A Study on the Simcho of Wooden Pagodas in Baekjae

백제의 심초 및 사리봉안

  • Jung, Ja Young (Buyeo National Research Institute of Cultural Heritage)
  • Received : 2008.08.25
  • Accepted : 2008.10.10
  • Published : 2008.10.30


Recently, there has been an increase in excavation studies of wood pagodas from the Three Kingdoms and Unified Shilla periods and new data related to wood pagoda erection are being found bringing about progress in research on this field. In other words, studies on wooden pagodas in Korea were composed mainly of flat, axis construction techniques and sarijangeomgu, but by acquiring new data, it has now become possible to study not only the stylobate construction procedure and transition, but also studies on restoring wooden pagodas. Furthermore, pagoda sites similar to this were found in China and Japan as well, making it possible to make comparative studies among ancient wooden pagodas possible. In this paper, the main remains were set as Baekjae wooden pagodas, which were the most frequently studied and among the wooden pagodas, the simcho (central base stone) and sarira housing locations. In result, simcho can be found changing its position from underground ${\rightarrow}$ halfway underground ${\rightarrow}$ above ground. Baekjae wooden pagodas up until the mid sixth century located at Neungsan-ri saji (AD 567) and Wangheungsaji (AD 577) had its simcho located underground and later it was constructed halfway underground and then above ground. It was confirmed that in the 7th century, it became customary to place above ground as seen in the Jaeseoksaji (AD639) and Hwangnyongsaji (AD645) wooden pagoda sites. The sarira was usually located on the south side of the simcho, but gradually changed to the center. In particular, sarira were combined in the simcho in the mid sixth century at the Wangheungsaji. This is approximately 11 years earlier than the Bijosa (AD 588) simcho found in Japan and this was not found even in the simcho of wooden pagodas in Yeongnyeongsa (AD 516) and Jopaengseong temple (AD 535~561) of China showing that the Wangheungsaji simcho was the earliest of its kind.