KOREAN HISTORY

The descriptions are of the sole responsibility of the Curator of this Section

105.
Pipa shaped bronze dagger
Period: Bronze Age
Overall length: 24.7 cm
Blade length : 21.5 cm
Handle length: 3.2 cm

Collection: The War Memorial
of Korea

Representative of the Bronze Age, excavated everywhere from the Northern Korean peninsula to Liaoning, China. The width of a dagger decreased at the end of the Bronze Age. Also, protrusions on the dagger disappeared in this period. These remains appear to have been manufactured in the latter period of the Bronze Age rather because the width of the blade significantly decreased compared to earlier in the Age. This dagger was also called a Liaoning style bronze dagger, Manchuria style bronze dagger, and Gokin, which presented a bent blade, bronze dagger.
    106.
Pipa shaped bronze dagger
Period: Bronze Age
Overall Length:
33.4 cm
Blade Length:
33 cm
Collection:
Kyung-in Museum of Fine Art

Representative of the Bronze Age, excavated everywhere from the Northern Korean peninsula to Liaoning, China. The width of a dagger decreased at the end of the Bronze Age. Also, protrusions on the dagger disappeared in this period. These remains appear to have been manufactured in the latter period of the Bronze Age rather because the width of the blade significantly decreased compared to earlier in the Age.
 
107.
Narrow Bronze Dagger
Period: Bronze Age
Overall Length:
28.9 cm
Collection: Kyung-in Museum of Fine Art

Fabricated during the period when the use of bronze daggers shifted from combat to ceremony (guard of honor). Referred to as the Korean style dagger, narrowed-end dagger, or bronze dagger. It can be found in Korea, Japan, and the Maritime Province of Siberia and had a 30cm long blade and 2~3cm short shaft with a specialized sheath. Polygonal strips were marked at the middle of the body. The middle front was narrowed to connect a strip. This dagger was fabricated using a cast and was polished to make a back with a sharpened blade. Although the hilt bosomed along with the back, it was narrow and sharp.
    108.
Narrow Bronze Dagger
Overall length:
30.3 cm
Blade length:
28.5 cm
Handle length:
1.8 cm
Collection:
Korea Army Museum

Fabricated during the period when the use of bronze daggers shifted from ceremony (guard of honor) to combat. A type of Narrow bronze dagger and is classified as a bronze dagger fabricated during a period shifting from the use of the Pipa-shaped bronze dagger to the Narrow bronze dagger.
 
    109.
Chinese style bronze dagger
Overall length:
41.5 cm
Blade length :
32.7 cm
Handle length:
8.8 cm
Collection: Korea Army Museum

Body and hilt of the sword was cast as a single piece and the hilt was fabricated as a pipe. This remain is a B type bronze dagger in which the body and hilt of the dagger was produced in a single cast. The hilt was fabricated in the shape of a pipe. The back was melded to the blade. Grains that produced a groove effect appeared on the blade. The width of the hilt increased from the tip of the blade to the end of the dagger.
 

    110.
Hwandodaedo
Period:
Three Kingdoms
Overall length:
72 cm
Blade length:
54.7 cm
Handle length:
17.3 cm
Collection:
The War Memorial of Korea

Used in close combat and equipped with a round-shaped ring at the end of the shaft. The Hwandodaedo was fabricated in the Three States age and used in close combat and equipped with a round-shaped ring at the end of the shaft. Decorations used on the ring symbolized the position of the owner. The Sohwandodaedo had no decorations on the ring. The body of the sword was straight. It is estimated to have been fabricated in the mid-Three States period or later due to a narrow and slender shape.
 
    111.
Iron sword

Period:
Three Kingdoms
Overall length: 83.5 cm
Blade length:
65.5 cm
Handle length:
18 cm
Collection:
The War Memorial of Korea

Used in close combat. It must have been used for a short time in that age because some iron daggers were excavated from an ancient tomb of the Three States Age. Also, it is evident that this dagger was used by members of the ruling class due to the use of specialized material for the sword guard. The sword guard was a kind of Neung in which there were no differences in the width of this guard compared to the Seokamli excavations. It is evident that the protection of the hand was largely not considered.
 

    112.
Saingeom
Period:
Joseon Dynasty
Overall length:
79.5 cm
Blade length:
59.5 cm
Handle length:
16 cm
Scabbard length:
65.8 cm
Collection:
Korea University Museum

Granted to a royal guard general by the King. A rare case of an Ingeom in perfect condition with no defects. The Phoenix and 28 astronomic symbols were carved on one side and 27 characters, which were written in a Chinese traditional calligraphic style, were carved on the other side. The sheath and hilt were fabricated using wood and fish skin. In general, typical Ingeom were difficult to use in actual combat due to their dimensions or weight. However, this sword was applicable as a real weapon.
 
    113.
Period:
Joseon Dynasty
Description:
Saingeom
Overall Length: 89.3 cm
Blade Length:
65.5 cm
Handle Length: 20.8 cm

Scabbard Length:
66.2 cm
Collection:
Korea Army Museum

Granted by the King to a royal guard general. The hilt and sheath were finished using black color and decorated using white copper. The sword guard was decorated using a ghost pattern. In addition, the head of the sword was decorated using a Yeouimun which is a type of Chinese Hwageom. A tiger pattern was carved on the body of the sword in which 27 letters were craved on one side and the Phoenix and 28 constellations were carved at the other side.
 
    114.
Period:
Joseon Dynasty
Overall Length: 134.6 cm
Blade Length:
96.8 cm
Handle Length:
33.7 cm

Scabbard Length:
101.5 cm
Collection:
Korea University Museum

Granted to a royal guard general by the King. The Phoenix was carved on one side of the body and certain words, which were written in a Chinese traditional calligraphic style, for the Samingeom were carved on the other side. Decoration of the hilt was fabricated using bronze. The sword guard was carved using a Yeonhwamun and the end of the hilt was a type of Wundu. The hilt was fabricated using silver on cast iron in which a geometrical-shaped Dangchomun was damascened using silver on one side and the word 'Samingeom' was finely damascened using silver for the swords name on the other side.
 
    115.
Saingeom

Period:
Joseon Dynasty
Overall Length:
74 cm
Blade Length:
62 cm
Handle Length: 12 cm

Scabbard Length:
64.5 cm
Collection: National Palace Museum of Korea.

Granted to a royal guard general by the King. The Phoenix and 28 astronomic symbols were carved on one side and 27 characters, which were written in a Chinese traditional calligraphic style, were carved on the other side. Instead of the Hoin, a 卍 shaped pattern was written on one side and lattice patterns were precisely carved on the other side.
 
    116.
Chilsungeom

Period:
Joseon Dynasty
Overall Length: 80.1 cm
Blade Length:
60.6 cm
Handle Length: 17 cm

Scabbard Length:
63.2 cm
Collection:
Korea Army Museum

Used as a weapon for combat or self-protection. Similar to the Hwageom which was a type of private-manufactured traditional swords in China. The sheath was covered with fish skin. The hilt was fabricated using a processed cow's horn. A Chilsungmun was damascened using gold on the body. It showed that prayer was done to produce special power in the sword.
 
117.
Samindo
Period:
Joseon dynasty (A.D.1932-A.D.1910)
Collection:
The War Memorial of Korea
Overall length:
90.0 cm
Blade length:
52.6 cm
Handle length:
17.4 cm
Scabbard length:
58.6 cm

Government manufactured. Granted to a royal guard general by the King. Used for the same purpose as the Samingeom. The word 'Samindo' was damascened using gold on the blade. The blade was sharp and had a blood chasm. Also, it was sharp in appearance. The hilt and sheath were fabricated using wood and covered using Korean paper. Then, it was finished with black paint. Decorations were fabricated using bronze.
118.
Wungeom
Overall length:
93.4 cm
Blade length:
67.5 cm
Handle length:
19.5 cm
Scabbard length:
73.3 cm
Collection:
Korea Army Museum

Used by an officer in charge of the royal guard and was called Wungeom. This is the only example of a Wungeom and is almost perfect in shape and parts. It also shows an important feature that reflects the swords use in the guard of honor during that age. The name Wungeom originated from the pattern of clouds painted on the sword. The pattern was the symbol of the royal guard in which a dragon riding clouds guards the King. The sheath of the sword was covered with shark skin and decorated with a Sipjangseng, which meant the 10 longevity symbols means temporal power and wealth and includes the sun, mountain, water, rock, pine tree, moon (or cloud), turtle, crane, deer, and legendary herb of eternal youth, pattern such as pine trees, cranes, and herbs that were thought to bring eternal youth in order to symbolize the honor of the guards.
    119.
Byeolungeom

Period:
Joseon Dynasty
Description:
Eodo (Sword used by King)
Overall Length:
72.3 cm
Blade Length:
48 cm
Handle Length: 12 cm

Scabbard Length:
55.3 cm
Collection:
Korea University Museum

Government manufactured. It was an Okgubodo that was worn as a ceremonial purpose in a royal palace and was similar to that of the Okgugeom used in China. The hilt and sheath were fabricated using wood and finished using a fish skin. The Tugak was decorated using black color coated bronze. Although the name was assigned as 'Aeodo', there are some arguments for the name. However, there were no arguments that this sword was exactly fabricated by following the specification and production process for the government manufactured sword and presented a high quality and dignity.
 
    120.
Byeolungeom

Period:
Joseon Dynasty
Description:
Byeolungeom (Sword used by King’s guard officials)
Overall Length:
85 cm
Blade Length:
65.7 cm
Handle Length: 18.3 cm
Scabbard Length:
67 cm
Collection:
Korea University Museum
 
    121.
Nokchiljang wungeom
Period:
Joseon dynasty (A.D.1932-A.D.1910)
Description: Nokchiljang wungeom
Collection:
Kyung-in Museum of Fine Art
Overall length:
81.5 cm
Blade length:
59.4 cm
Handle length:
18.0 cm
Scabbard length:
62.0 cm

Government manufactured. Used by the Wungeom and Beyolwungeom to guard the King as a guard of honor in a royal ceremony. The entire cover of the hilt and sheath was initially painted using lacquer, and then a fish skin was used to cover the hilt and sheath. Then, the hilt and sheath were finished using dark lacquer. The decoration used in the whole sword was bronze in which gold was used to increase the external grade.
 
    122.
Period:
Joseon dynasty (A.D.1932-A.D.1910)
Description:
Byeolwungeom
Collection:
Korea Army Museum
Overall length:
75.1 cm
Blade length:
53.7 cm
Handle length:
18.0 cm

Government manufactured. Used by an officer who was in charge of the royal guard and was called Byeolwungeom. The material for the hilt and sheath was wood. The hilt and sheath were painted using a soft orange color and gold powder was spread on the hilt and sheath in order to give a dimmed appearance. Lattice patterns that were made by copper and painted as certain lucky and auspicious signs were simplified decorations on this sword. In addition, a decorative wearing accessory was coated using metal to emphasize its brilliance.
 
    123.
Byeolwungeom

Period:
Joseon Dynasty
Description:
Byeolungeom (Sword used by King’s guard officials)
Overall Length:
70 cm
Blade Length:
38.5 cm
Handle Length: 16.8 cm

Scabbard Length:
51.8 cm
Collection:
Korea University Museum.

Government manufactured. It presented a peculiar appearance that didn't belong to the sword for a guard of honor, such as the Wungeom or Paedo that is recorded in the Joseonwangjosilok. Although this sword was named as the Byeolwungeom, it presented a different class compared to the average remains of the Byeolwungeom. It was fabricated by the government and used in the class of nobles. The hilt and sheath were fabricated using wood and coated light red lacquer. In addition, gold powders were used to finish the hilt and sheath to emphasize an elegant appearance.
 
    124.
Mungwando

Period:
Joseon Dynasty
Description:
Mungwando(Sword used by officials)
Overall Length:
55 cm
Blade Length:
36.7 cm
Handle Length:
15.5 cm
Scabbard Length:
40.7 cm
Collection:
Korea University Museum.

Privately manufactured. Used for a self-protection and ornament purposes for the Yangban. The hilt and sheath were decorated using various auspicious patterns, such as flower and dear patterns, with some decorative elements and finished using semi-transparent red lacquer.
 
125.
Yedo (Ceremonial Sword)
Period:
Joseon dynasty (A.D.1932-A.D.1910)
Collection:
Korea University Museum
Overall length:
75.5 cm
Blade length:
52.5 cm
Handle length:
19.5 cm
Scabbard length:
65.8 cm
Government manufactured. An Okgubodo worn for ceremonial purposes in a royal palace and similar to that of the Okgugeom used in China. A flower pattern was painted using gold on the base of the sheath and the hilt that was painted using red lacquer. Also, the external part including detailed metal accessories and wearing decorations were decorated using silver.
126.
Hwando
Period:
Joseon dynasty (A.D.1932-A.D.1910)
Collection:
Korea Army Museum
Overall length:
71.1 cm
Blade length:
53.5 cm
Handle length:
15.7 cm
Scabbard length:
54.8 cm

Government manufactured. Used for self-protection by military nobles. The hilt was finished using black lacquer and the sheath was wound using a cross knot of cotton string without any finishing materials. The sword guard was fabricated using bronze in a circular shape in which a tiger was carved in relief on the front and back sides. Various faces of luck were carved as decoration used on the hilt. A bamboo leaf pattern that symbolized a straight sword was carved on the wearing decoration. In addition, a crane that symbolized the eternal youth and dignity of a scholar were carved on the strip ring. The pattern '卍' was carved on the lower section of the hilt.
    127.
Gungdo
Period:
Early to mid Joseon dynasty (A.D.1932-A.D.1910)
Collection:
Korea University Museum
Overall length:
89 cm
Blade length:
35.8 cm
Handle length:
16.8 cm
Scabbard length:
72.8 cm

Government manufactured. A type of Bodos and was used by a general. This sword represented dignity and majesty in appearance and could be used as a strong sword in combat. The hilt and sheath were fabricated using wood and covered with fish skin in a Maehwa pattern. It was finished using red lacquer. The blade had a hexagonal-shaped cross-section and no blood chasms.
 
    128.

Period:
Joseon Dynasty
Description:
Hwando - Red lacquered decorated with Buddhist symbol 卍.
Overall Length:
69 cm
Blade Length:
52 cm
Handle Length: 17 cm

Scabbard Length:
57 cm
Collection:
National Palace Museum of Korea
 
    129.

Period:
Joseon Dynasty
Description:
Hwando - Sword with rounded pommel
Overall Length:
68.3 cm
Blade Length:
50.2 cm
Handle Length: 13.5 cm
Scabbard Length:
54 cm
Collection:
Kyung-in Museum of Fine Art
 
    130.
Dagger in shark skin

Period:
Joseon Dynasty
Description:
Dagger in shark skin
Overall Length:
45 cm
Blade Length:
29.2 cm
Handle Length: 12.8 cm
Scabbard Length:
33.3 cm
Collection:
Kyung-in Museum of Fine Art.

Privately manufactured. Used for self-protection of the noble and civil officers. The hilt and sheath were totally covered using a fish skin and finished using bronze. The horn of a rhino that symbolizes riches and honors as an auspicious pattern was carved on one side, and the letter of Boryonggeom was carved as an intaglio on the other side.
 
    131.
Hosindo (Dagger)

Period:
Joseon Dynasty
Description:
Hosindo - Dagger in wood and ivory.
Overall Length:
48.8 cm
Blade Length:
34.2 cm
Handle Length: 13.4 cm

Scabbard Length:
35.2 cm
Collection:
Korea Army Museum

Privately manufactured. Used for a self-protection for a Daewongun (it was granted to the father of the King who was not a member of a direct line of royal family). The sheath and hilt was fabricated using unpainted wood. An octagonal shape was applied to form the external structure. The Phoenix was carved on one side of the blade, and three penetrated holes were applied on the other side in order to symbolize a mystical power.

 
 
    132.
Jangdo Taegeuk Eui

Period:
Joseon Dynasty
Description:
Jangdo Taegeuk Eul. Concealed sword in Yin Yang shape
Overall Length:
75.5 cm
Blade Length:
30.8 cm
Handle Length:
38.2 cm
Scabbard Length:
37.1 cm
Collection:
Korea Army Museum.

Privately manufactured. Used for a self-protection in the Yangban. The hilt and sheath was finished using black lacquer and white copper. The decoration of the entrance of the sheath was a pattern that symbolizes the male and female principle and that was carved at the above and below of the flower pattern.
 
    133.
Hosindo Changpogeom

Period:
Joseon Dynasty
Description:
Hosindo Changpogeom Concealed sword
Overall Length:
112.5 cm
Blade Length:
89.5 cm
Handle Length: 18 cm

Scabbard Length:
94.1 cm
Collection:
Korea Army Museum.

Privately manufactured. Used for self-protection or in a state of emergency. The hilt was simply finished using wood. The cross-section of the body was a double-edged blade where one side was flat, and the other side was a raised triangle shape. A word that a treasure sword equaled to a thousand pieces of gold was damascened using gold on the body. It is easy to estimate the objective and propensity of this sword based on this word.
 
    134.
Jwajanggeom Concealed sword for self-protection

Period:
Joseon Dynasty
Description:
Jwajanggeom Concealed sword for self-protection
Overall Length:
89 cm
Blade Length:
35.8 cm
Handle Length:
16.8 cm
Scabbard Length:
72.8 cm
Collection:
Korea University Museum
Privately manufactured. Used as a walking stick in ordinary times but could also be used as a weapon. Was largely used for private purposes. The hilt and sheath were fabricated using wood and finished using black lacquer. The decoration was made of copper. The blade was a type of double-edged sword that was very thin and sharp like a Western fencing sword.
 
    135.
Wuwol chungryongdo

Period:
Joseon Dynasty
Description:
Eonwolcheongnyongdo - Half moon Halberd
Overall Length:
211 cm
Blade Length:
53 cm
Collection: National Palace Museum of Korea.

Government manufactured. Used for a guard of honor in a royal palace. It was fabricated by following the typical production process of Joseon's Weoldos that was written in the military text book of Muyaedobo-tongji in the later period of the Joseon dynasty. The starting point of the body presented as a shape where a dragon mouth shaped accessory, which was strongly and beautifully fabricated using bronze, bit a sword.
 
    136.
Eonwolcheongnyongdo- Half moon halberd

Period:
Joseon Dynasty
Description:
Hyeopdo - Halberd
Overall Length:
211.5 cm
Blade Length:
43.5 cm
Collection: National Palace Museum of Korea

Government manufactured. Used for a guard of honor in a royal palace. It was fabricated by following the typical production process of Joseon's Hyeopdodohae that was written in the military text book of Muyaedobo-tongji in the mid period of the Joseon dynasty. It presented a very small curvature at the blade and that can be considered as a straight sword.
 
 

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