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Taebodan

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  • Korean: 大報壇 (Taebodan)

The Taebodan was a shrine erected by the Joseon Korean royal court in 1704, within the Changdeokgung Palace and dedicated to the spirits of the Emperors of the Ming Dynasty.

Originally, it was dedicated specifically to the Wanli Emperor, and was ostensibly erected as a show of gratitude for his intervention in the Imjin War. However, in 1749, the shrine was expanded to also honor the first and last emperors of the Ming, the Hongwu and Chongzhen Emperors. Through this shrine, the Court showed its undying loyalty to the fallen Ming, and at the same time, legitimated itself through identification of Joseon as the direct heir of Ming civilization, and thus of Chinese civilization, stretching back to the Zhou Dynasty, which survived now only in Korea (according to Joseon rhetoric), as China itself had fallen to "barbarians" (the Manchu Qing Dynasty).

References

  • Adam Bohnet, “Ruling Ideology and Marginal Subjects: Ming Loyalism and Foreign Lineages in Late Chosŏn Korea.” Journal of Early Modern History 15:6 (January 2011): 483.
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