Friday, November 18, 2022

National Folk Museum in Seoul

The National Folk Museum of Korea is located within the grounds of the Gyeongbokgung Palace and contains replicas of historical objects to illustrate the history and traditional life of the Korean people

Outside the museum, statues of the twelve zodiac signs are reconstructed based on guardian stones of a royal tomb.  Animal signs are located in a circle to show the direction and time of day that each animal represents.  These guardian figures have appeared on the surface of pagodas, as guardian stones in tombs, in Buddhist paintings, and in everyday life items.

Zodiac guardian stones

Inside the museum, an exhibition on Korean traditional daily life presents scenes from everyday life from seventeenth to the twentieth century Korea.

Daily life

Life in winter

Life in summer and hunting

The next section of the museum features life in a hanok, the traditional Korean house first designed and built in the 14th century during the Joseon dynasty

Life in a hanok

The next section of the museum presents the passage of life, from birth to coming-of-age to marriage and, ultimately, to death.

Stages of life

Outside the museum, the Ochon house demonstrates the house of a typical middle-income family in the Joseon period.  This house was originally built in 1848 in a square shape with four rooms and a yard in the center.

Joseon house

Outside the house, along the path, Guardian Posts demonstrate statues that were placed at the entrance to towns or temples to serve as guardian spirits for the location.

Guardian posts

Leaving the grounds of the museum and the Gyeongbokgung Palace, we think back on what a great introduction to life in Korea that these locations have provided to us.

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