The Distributional Patterns of Silla Burial Grounds and the Character of Outer Coffin Tombs in Jjoksaem Site, Gyeongju

쪽샘유적 신라고분 분포양상과 목곽묘의 성격

  • Yun, Hyoung-Jun (Gyeongju National Research Institute of Cultural Heritage)
  • Received : 2017.12.08
  • Published : 2017.12.30


The Jjoksaem site is the eastern sector of Daereungwon Ancient Tomb Complex, Gyeongju(the 512th Historic site) called Wolseong North Burial Ground in academic community. The excavation and research of this site was conducted from 2007 to 2015, with the purpose of basic data offering for the restoration of Silla tumuli and development of ancient tomb park. As a result of the investigation, more than 700 new tombs were discovered except the 155 tumuli founded in the Japanese colonial era. Moreover, more than 70 percent of the smaller tombs, such as outer coffin tombs, were discovered here. There are four characteristics of outer coffin tombs in Jjoksaem site. First, it is recognized the Gyeongju-styled outer coffin tombs have a long rectangular shape, distinct from Gimhae-styled outer coffin tombs in a rectangular shape. Second, they are divided into three groups by the size of the grave area. This is indirectly related to the rank and the status of the buried person. Third, these tombs began to be constructed at the end of the 3rd century before the time of wooden chamber tombs covered by stone and earthen mound. They were ruined because of the new tombs constructed at the period of Maripgan. This reflects that the identity of the former tombs was not respected by the communities in the later generations. Outer coffin tombs were consistently made to the end of the era of wooden chamber tombs covered by stone and earthen mound. Lastly, the area of burial ground of outer coffin tombs is limited by wooden chamber tombs covered by stone and wooden mounds. Otherwise, the location of the burial ground for the deceased is limited by the status of the deceased. The idea that wooden chamber tombs covered by stone and earthen mound are located on the above ground turns out to be incorrect. In Jjoksaem site, there is little difference between the height of the circular burial protection stone and the height of the digging lines of the other tombs. In the case of No.44 tumulus, the lowest step of the circular burial protection stones is lower than those of the other tombs and tumuli. Research of outer coffin tombs at Jjoksaem site will be to suggest important academic data about the changing period from Saroguk, as the head of chiefdom union, to Silla, as state.


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