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A Study on the Topography and the Criteria of Choosing the Location-Allocation of Palaces - Focusing on Gyeongbokgung Palace and Changdeokgung Palace -

조선 궁궐 입지 선정의 기준과 지형에 대한 연구 - 경복궁과 창덕궁을 중심으로 -

  • Kim, Kyoosoon (Department of Geography Education, Kangwon National University)
  • 김규순 (강원대학교 지리교육과)
  • Received : 2019.03.26
  • Accepted : 2019.07.20
  • Published : 2019.09.30

Abstract

The palaces in South Korea are largely divided into primary palaces (法宮) and secondary palaces (離宮). In the early Joseon period, the primary palace was Gyeongbokgung Palace, and the secondary palace was Changdeokgung Palace. Additionally, there is the concept of imperial palaces (正宮). Gyeongbokgung Palace was the primary palace and the imperial palace. The topography of Gyeongbokgung is based on Mt. Baegak, which is the symbol of royal authority. The location of the palaces was chosen to highlight the king's dignity and authority. The three gates and three courts (三門三朝) were positioned on a straight line based on one axis along the ridge of Mt. Baegak to establish the legitimacy, hierarchy, and unity of the kingship. The secondary palace was built according to the demands of the king and the royal family or the political situation. It was created as a royal living space; thus, creating independent and diverse spaces along multiple axes. The primary palace was chosen to be built on the terrain of Yang, and the secondary palace was chosen to be built on the terrain of Yin; the criteria for laying buildings in the palace areas had to be different. The most important point in the formation of Joseon palaces was that the secret vital energy for the king (王氣) originated from the sacred mountain. Important elements of the palace were the secret vital energy chain of feng shui (風水氣脈) and the forbidden stream (禁川). The secret vital energy chain of feng shui was the gateway to the secret vital energy for the king, and the forbidden stream was a method of preventing the king from leaving the palace grounds. Gyeongbokgung Palace, which is on typical feng shui terrain, faithfully reflects the principles of feng shui. On the other hand, the secondary palace was built on incomplete and irregular feng shui terrain. Feng shui was part of the nature and the geography of the ruling classes in the Joseon Dynasty. By examining their geography, I believe that the perfection of traditional culture inheritance and restoration can be improved.

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