Mishil (c. 546/548 – c. 612) was a Silla aristocrat whose historicity is debated. According to the Hwarang Segi, she was concubine to several kings and, along with his mother Queen Sado, played an instrumental role in dethroning King Jinji.[1]

Mishil
Bornc. 546/548
Diedc. 612
Spouse(s)Lord Sejong, 6th Pungwolju
Issue
  • Lord Hajong (564–? CE)
  • Lord Bojong (580–621 CE)
  • Lord Okjong
  • Prince Sujong
  • Princess Banya
  • Princess Nanya
  • Princess Aesong
  • Princess Bohwa
FatherMijinbu
MotherLady Myodo
Mishil
Hangul
미실
Hanja
美室
Revised RomanizationMisil
McCune–ReischauerMishil

BiographyEdit

According to the Hwarang Segi, Mishil was the daughter of Lord Mijinbu and Lady Myodo and sister of Queen Mother Sado, the consort of Jinheung of Silla. Her paternal grandmother was Princess Samyeop, daughter of King Beopheung. Due to her lineage, Mishil was a member of the jingol (진골, 眞骨), or the noble true bone caste. Matrilineally, she belonged to the Matrilineal clan of Daewon Shintong (대원신통, 大元神統) or directly translated as the divine succession of the great prime. The divine succession of the great prime is believed to be descent from Bomi, however, the records in the reigns of Soji of Silla, that Bomi, the Lady Daewon (大元夫人),passed away at age 82 and buried at the age of 82. Lady Daewon has given birth to 12 children from several different fathers. Because of her nobility, her descedents were known as Daewon or great prime tribe. (大元族).[2]

She was the wife of Lord Sejong (the sixth Pungwolju), the lover of General Seolwon (the seventh pungwolju) and the older sister of Lord Misaeng (the tenth Pungwolju). She was concubine to three successive Silla kings: King Jinheung, King Jinji, and King Jinpyeong. Legend states that she was in love with Crown Prince Dongnyeon. Her sons became the 11th and 16th pungwoljus, Bojong (through Seolwon) and Hajong (through Sejong), respectively.

According to Hwarang Segi: Mishil became King Jinji's concubine after his father, King Jinheung died. However, he lost interest on her after falling in love with another woman. His mother, Queen Sado, was angered about his sudden change of heart and failing to keep his promise on making her sister, Mishil into his Queen. As a result, Queen Sado, with the help of Mishil's lovers; Lord Sejong and General Seolwon, managed to get the support of the court to dethrone King Jinji. They gained people's support after blaming him for the starvation and defeat that Silla has suffered by spreading the rumor that heavens has forsaken Silla for having an immoral king. Jinji's removal resulted in the installation of his nephew, King Jinpyeong, to the throne. Jinji's grandson, Kim Chunchu, would later succeed to the throne as King Muyeol.

HistoricityEdit

It has been questioned whether Misil was truly a historical figure, as she is only mentioned in the Hwarang Segi,[3] and not in the historical texts Samguk sagi or Samguk yusa.[4] Additionally, her role as mother to her various sons and daughters is not acknowledged by either of these historical texts, only the Hwarang Segi.[5][1]

In popular cultureEdit

GenealogyEdit

AncestorsEdit

FamilyEdit

  • For the lineage from Mishil's parents upwards, refer to the ancestry chart above
  • Younger Brother: Misaeng Rang (美生郞 미생랑), 10th Pungwolju
  • Husbands and Lovers, and their Respective Issue:
  1. Lord Sejong[6] (世宗公 세종공, ?–588),[7][8] 6th Pungwolju (561-568, 572)
    1. Lord Hajong (夏宗公 하종공, 564–?), 1st son, 11th Pungwolju (588–591)
    2. Lord Okjong (玉宗公 옥종공), 2nd son by Lord Sejong
  2. Lord Sadaham (斯多含公 사다함공, 546–564), 5th Pungwolju (562-564) – No issue.
  3. Seolwon Rang (薛原郞 설원랑, 549–606), 7th Pungwolju (572–579)
    1. Lord Bojong (寶宗公 보종공, 580–621), Only son, 16th Pungwolju (616–621)
  4. King Jinheung (眞興王 진흥왕), 24th King of Silla
    1. Prince Sujong (壽宗殿君 수종전군), Only son
    2. Princess Banya (般若公主 반야공주), 1st daughter
    3. Princess Nanya (蘭若公主 난야공주), 2nd daughter
  5. Crown Prince Dongryun (銅輪太子 동륜태자, ?–572), son of King Jinheung
    1. Princess Aesong (艾松公主 애송공주), Only daughter
  6. King Jinji (眞智王 진지왕), 25th King of Silla – No issue.
  7. King Jinpyeong (眞平王 진평왕), 26th King of Silla
    1. Princess Bohwa (寶華公主 보화공주), Only daughter

NotesEdit

  1. ^ a b Kim Dae-mun; Gakhun 각훈 (2012). 화랑세기/해동고승전 천줄읽기 [Hwarang segi/Haedong Goseungjeon (in a thousand lines)] (in Korean). Translated by Yeo Seonggu 여성구. CommunicationBooks.
  2. ^ https://books.google.com.sg/books?id=52Q-AwAAQBAJ&pg=PA71&lpg=PA71&dq=大元神統&source=bl&ots=oYy8eVErbf&sig=ACfU3U26iuCzHOIO9wRlxSLMqGC2bqZG5A&hl=en&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwij4OedgtbmAhVYWX0KHU-mATkQ6AEwA3oECAgQAQ#v=onepage&q=大元神統&f=false
  3. ^ Sohn, Byung Woo (2011). "The Historical Drama Queen Seondeok: Imaginary Memory of an Ancient Heroine". The Review of Korean Studies. 14 (2): 67. Retrieved 17 June 2019.
  4. ^ Kim Jongseong 김종성 (7 July 2009). "'절대권력자' 미실에게도 한계는 있었다" [There were limits on even the 'authoritarian' Misil] (in Korean). OhmyNews. Retrieved 17 June 2019.
  5. ^ Kim Jongseong 김종성 (10 June 2009). "미실에겐 몇 명의 남자들이 있었을까?" [How many men did Misil have?] (in Korean). OhmyNews. Retrieved 17 June 2019.
  6. ^ His other name is Noribu (弩里夫 노리부); variations including Nojong (奴宗 노종), Nobu (奴夫 노부), Naebu (內夫 내부), and Naeryebu (內禮夫 내례부)
  7. ^ The official husband of Mishil.
  8. ^ One of the sons of Empress Dowager Jiso (지소태후).