Daemusin of Goguryeo

King Daemusin of Goguryeo (4–44, r. 18–44) was the third ruler of Goguryeo, the northernmost of the Three Kingdoms of Korea. Daemusin led early Goguryeo through a period of massive territorial expansion, conquering several smaller nations and the powerful kingdom of Dongbuyeo.

Daemusin of Goguryeo
Revised RomanizationDaemusin-wang, Daehaejuryu-wang
McCune–ReischauerTaemusin-wang, Taehaejuryu-wang
Birth name
Revised RomanizationHae Muhyul
McCune–ReischauerHae Muhyul


He was born as Prince Moo-hyul, the third son of King Yuri. At 11 years old he became the crown prince as the next in line of the throne had committed suicide and became king upon his father's death four years later.

Daemusin strengthened central rule of Goguryeo and expanded its territory. He annexed Dongbuyeo and killed its king Daeso in 22. In 26 he conquered Gaema-guk, along the Amnok River, and later conquered Guda-guk.

After fending off China's attack in 28, he sent his son, Prince Hodong, who was about 16 at the time, to attack the Nangnang Commandery. He also defeated the Nakrang Kingdom in northwestern Korea in 32. He destroyed Nangnang in 37,[1][2] but an Eastern Han army sent by Emperor Guangwu of Han, captured it in 44. He was buried in Daesuchonwon.

In the legend of Prince Hodong and the Princess of Nakrang Daemusin was said to have sent his son into deceiving the princess of Nakrang into destroying the drum that would have warned them for a coming invasion.[3]

Modern depictionEdit

Film and televisionEdit


In recent times, Daemusin served as a model for the famous Manhwa and video game Nexus: The Kingdom of the Winds.

Significance of titleEdit

King Muhyul was given the title Daemusin wang, which literally means "Great Holy Warrior King". As with most Goguryeo kings, little is known about Muhyul except for what is stated in some ancient Korean sources. Some historians have inferred that the giving of such an extreme title to this man must mean that he led Goguryeo through many outstanding military accomplishments, possibly more than he is given credit for in historical texts. Another school of thought declares that the destruction of East Buyeo in itself, was an almost unthinkable feat at the time, meaning East Buyeo was a powerful kingdom according to these select scholars.

Not all Goguryeo rulers were given special titles posthumously or in their lifetime. Most Goguryeo rulers were posthumously given titles based on the place of their burial. Only a select few, such as King Gwanggaeto the Great and King Dongmyeongseong, were given such "significant" posthumous names.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ New History of Korea. Written by Lee Hyun Hee, Park Sung Soo, Yoon Nae Hyung; published by Jimundang. Published in year 2005.
  2. ^ Yong-ho Ch'oe, Reinterpreting Traditional History in North Korea. The Journal of Asian Studies, 40, 503-523.
  3. ^ Samguk Sagi
Daemusin of Goguryeo
Born: 4 Died: 44
Regnal titles
Preceded by
King of Goguryeo
Succeeded by
Minjung of Goguryeo