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Kin Genchin

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  • Other Names: Kim Wonjin

Kin Genchin, also known by the Korean reading of his name, Kim Wonjin, was a 15th century resident of Hizen province known for his cross-border maritime activities.

He first appears in Korean records in 1423 as an envoy of the Korean court to Shimazu Hisatoyo, seeking the repatriation of Koreans who had been sold into servitude. Genchin successfully returned to Korea with nine Koreans returned by Hisatoyo.

Genchin also served Hisatoyo, and the Matsura clan of Hizen at times as well.

He helped arrange for a group of Ryukyuans castaway in Korea in 1429 to return home, and in 1435 even lent his ship to a new group of Ryukyuan castaways for them to return home themselves from Korea. Two years later, Genchin traveled to Ryukyu himself to retrieve Korean castaways, to escort them home.

References

  • Gregory Smits, Maritime Ryukyu, University of Hawai'i Press (2019), 41.
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