Munjong of Joseon
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Munjong of Joseon (15 November 1414 – 1 June 1452) was the fifth King of the Joseon Dynasty, who ruled Korea from 1450 to 1452. He was the eldest son of King Sejong and succeeded him in 1450, but died of disease two years later. He was succeeded by his son, Danjong of Joseon.
|Munjong of Joseon|
|King of Joseon|
|Reign||18 May 1450 – 14 May 1452|
|Predecessor||Sejong of Joseon|
|Successor||Danjong of Joseon|
|Born||November 15, 1414|
|Died||June 1, 1452 (aged 37)|
Danjong of Joseon
|Father||Sejong of Joseon|
|Revised Romanization||I Hyang|
Yi Hyang was the longest holder of the position of Crown Prince during the Joseon Dynasty, holding the position from 1421 to 1450, a record 29 years. In January 1421, Sejong instructed that the eight-year-old Yi Hyang be educated by ministers from the Hall of Worthies, then in October the same year, he was made crown prince and sent to study at the Sungkyunkwan. From 1442 until his own accession to the throne in 1450, he served as regent to King Sejong.
Most of Yi Hyang's achievements were performed during his life as crown prince. Although credit is primarily given to Jang Yeong-sil for inventing the water gauge, the Annals of the Joseon Dynasty state that it was the crown prince who found measures of water levels in the ground. Yi Hyang also contributed to the development of Korean vernacular script by his father. He improved Hwacha as well-known type for nowadays, by himself and younger brother Yi Gu, Grand Prince Imyeong (임영대군 이구). Also, it was Munjong who took care of state affairs late during King Sejong's reign, as Sejong developed various illnesses and disorders.
Yi Hyang ascended the Joseon throne as King Munjong in 1450, and his reign marked the beginning of an imbalance of power at court. Kim Bi-hwan describes the, "interaction of the royal authority, administrative power, remonstrative power, and the collective authority of scholars outside the office," before Munjong as contributing to a situation that allowed the Joseon to function constitutionally. During Munjong's reign, however, the power balance collapsed, setting the stage for his brother to lead a coup d'etat in 1452, and was not corrected until the reign of Yeonsangun of Joseon.
Munjong was first married to Crown Princess Hwi of the Andong Kim clan. She reportedly used witchcraft to gain Munjong's love. She burned the shoes of Munjong's mistress, and made her drink the ashes with alcohol. When King Sejong found out about this, he deposed her from her position.
Secondly, Munjong married Crown Princess Sun of the Haeum Bong clan (순빈 봉씨). She was deposed from her position when it was discovered that she drank alcohol, which was not accepted for a woman, and because she had a homosexual love affair with one of her maids named So-ssang (소쌍).
Lastly, Queen Hyeondeok became the third wife of Munjong. She was reportedly the only wife that Munjong loved, and she gave birth to Princess Gyeonghye and Danjong, but died in childbed. Danjong was the next king of Joseon after Munjong died.
- Father: King Sejong of Joseon (15 May 1397 – 8 April 1450) (세종)
- Mother: Queen Soheon of the Cheongsong Shim clan (12 October 1395 – 19 April 1446) (소헌왕후 심씨)
- Grandfather: Shim On (1375 – 18 January 1419) (심온)
- Grandmother: Lady Ahn of the Sunheung Ahn clan (? – 1444) (순흥 안씨)
- Consorts and their Respective Issue(s):
- Crown Princess Hwi of the Andong Kim clan (1410–1429) (휘빈 김씨) — No issue.
- Crown Princess Sun of the Haeum Bong clan (1414–1436) (순빈 봉씨) — No issue.
- Queen Hyeondeok of the Andong Kwon clan (17 April 1418 – 10 August 1441) (현덕왕후 권씨)
- Royal Noble Consort Suk of the Namyang Hong clan (1418 – ?) (숙빈 홍씨)
- An unnamed daughter (1441 - 1444)
- Royal Consort Suk-ui of the Nampyeong Mun clan (1426 – 1508) (숙의 문씨)
- Royal Consort So-yong of the Munhwa Yu clan (소용 유씨)
- Royal Consort So-yong of the Andong Kwon clan (소용 권씨)
- Royal Consort So-yong of the Dongrae Jeong clan (소용 정씨)
- An unnamed son (died in childhood)
- Consort So-yong of the Paepyeong Yun clan (소용 윤씨)
- Consort Sa-chik of the Yang clan (사칙 양씨)
- Court Lady Jang (상궁 장씨)
- An unnamed son (died in childhood)
His full posthumous nameEdit
- King Munjong Gongsun Heummyung Insuk Gwangmun Seonghyo the Great of Korea
- Portrayed by Hwang Chi-hoon in the 1983 MBC TV series The King of Chudong Palace.
- Portrayed by Jeon Moo-song in the 1998 KBS TV series King and Queen.
- Portrayed by Oh Eun-chan and Lee Sang-yeob in the 2008 KBS TV series The Great King, Sejong.
- Portrayed by Park Jung-chul in the 2008 film The Divine Weapon.
- Portrayed by Jung Dong-hwan in the 2011 KBS2 TV series The Princess' Man.
- Portrayed by Sunwoo Jae-duk in the 2011 JTBC TV series Insu, The Queen Mother.
- Portrayed by Kim Tae-woo in 2013 film The Face Reader.
- Portrayed by Han Jeong-woo and Choi Seung-hun in the 2016 KBS1 TV series Jang Yeong-sil.
- Jung (2006), p. 139.
- Jung (2006), p. 141.
- Yeon (2010), p. 13.
- Kim (2014), p. 253-254.
- Given as a temple name upon her death in 1429
- Daughter of Kim O-mun (김오문), Lord Anjeong (안정공), Magistrate Pandon-ryeong (판돈령부사); and Lady Yi (이씨 부인). Granddaughter of Kim Gu-deok (김구덕). Niece of Royal Noble Consort Myeong (명빈 김씨), thru her relationship as Kim Oh-mun's elder sister
- First Princess Consort to the Royal Prince Successor, married in 1427. Formally separated in August 18, 1429, then later committed suicide
- Second Princess Consort to the Royal Prince Successor, married in October 15, 1429. Formally separated in October 26, 1436 (instigated by Sejong himself), due to a series of scandals, involving her lie of her pregnancy, and her being caught in a lesbian act (sleeping with one of her palace maids) by Sejong himself, in 1435
- One of Munjong's former concubines; Seung-hwi rank. Became Lady Hyeondeok, the Princess Consort to the Royal Prince Successor (현덕빈) upon her marriage
- Was demoted in June 26, 1457, as Lady Hyeondeok, following her son's deposition and demotion as Deposed Prince Nosan (노산군) in June 21, 1457. Was posthumously restored back in March 12, 1513, and finally in July 15, 1699
- Daughter of Kwon Jeon (권전), Internal Prince Hwasan (화산부원군); and Lady Haeju, Princess Consort to the Internal Prince, of the Choi clan (해주부부인 최씨)
- Eldest offspring
- Later married Jeong Jong (정종, ?–1461), son of Jeong Chung-gyeong (정충경); created Military Officer Yeongyang (영양위)
- Firstly ranked as "Royal Prince Successor Descendant" (왕세손), when Munjong was still "Royal Prince Successor" (왕세자) during Sejong's reign. Became the Royal Crown Prince when his father became King
- Daughter of Mun Min-ji (문민지)
- Married in 1442
- Later married (April 16, 1454) Kang Ja-sun (강자순), created Military Officer Banseong (반성위); which she later killed upon learning of his affair with Lee Gil-sang (이길상)'s daughter.
- Her daughter, Lady Kang of the Jinju Kang clan, married Yi Chong, Prince Songseon (이총 숭선군, 嵩善君) (a half-grandson of King Sejo)
- Kim, Bi-Hwan (2014). Kang, Jung In (ed.). A Constitutionalist Interpretation of Confucian Politics in the Early Joseon Dynasty. London: Lexington Books. pp. 243–266.
- Jung, Jae-Hoon (2006). "Royal Education of Princes in the Reign of King Sejong". The Review of Korean Studies. 9 (3): 133–152.
- Yeon, Jaehoon (2010). "Was the Korean alphabet a sole invention of King Sejong?". Journal of Korean Culture. 14: 1–20.
Munjong of JoseonBorn: 15 November 1414 Died: 1 June 1452
Sejong the Great
| King of Joseon
May 18, 1450 – May 14, 1452