Myeongjong of Goryeo

Myeongjong of Goryeo (8 November 1131 – 3 December 1202) (r. 1170–1197) was 19th monarch of the Goryeo dynasty of Korea. He was the third son of King Injong.

Myeongjong of Goryeo
고려 명종
高麗 明宗
Duke of Ikyang
(익양공, 翼陽公)
Marquess of Ikyang
(익양후, 翼陽侯)
King of Goryeo
PredecessorUijong of Goryeo
SuccessorSinjong of Goryeo
RegentYi Uibang
Jeong Jungbu
Gyeong Daeseung
Yi Uimin
Choe Chungheon
BornWang Heun
8 November 1131
Yeondeok Palace?, Gaegyeong, Kingdom of Goryeo
Died3 December 1202 (aged 71)
Disputed between: Changrak Palace or Yanghwa Palace, Gaegyeong, Kingdom of Goryeo
Jireung tomb
(before 1152)
ConcubineLady Myeongchun
Lady Sunju
Posthumous name
King Hwangmyeong Gwanghyo the Great
Temple name
Myeongjong (명종, 明宗)
HouseHouse of Wang
FatherInjong of Goryeo
MotherQueen Gongye
Korean name
Revised RomanizationMyeongjong
Birth name
, later
, later
Revised RomanizationWang Heun, later Wang Ho
McCune–ReischauerWang Hŭn, later Wang Ho
Courtesy name
Revised RomanizationJidan
Posthumous name
Revised RomanizationGwanghyo Daewang
McCune–ReischauerK'wangh'yo Taewang

Although it was intended that Injong's second son should succeed his father,[1] he was assassinated because Jeong Jung-bu feared that he might become a threat to him in the future. Myeongjong was a weak king, and was merely on the throne to show the general populace they still had a king, as the true rulers were the military leaders. His reign saw constant bloodshed as well as the deaths of the rebels Chung Jung-bu, Yi Ui-bang, and Yi Ui-min (not related to Yi Ui-Bang) but also the hero, Gyeong Dae-seung (General Gyeong was in fact the most loyal of the military leaders. Yet Myeongjong hated and mistrusted him because of his popularity with the populace).

After twenty-seven years on the throne, he was sent into exile by the military ruler of the time, Choe Chung-heon, and Injong's fifth son, King Sinjong, was placed on the throne.


  • Father: Injong of Goryeo (고려 인종)
  • Mother: Queen Gongye (공예왕후)
    • Grandfather: Im Won-hu (임원후)
    • Grandmother: Grand Lady of Jinhan State of the Bupyeong Yi clan (진한국대부인 부평 이씨)
  • Consort and their Respective issue(s):
  1. Queen Uijeong of the Gim clan (의정왕후 김씨); half second cousin once removed.
    1. Crown Prince Wang Yeong (태자 왕영)
    2. Princess Yeonhui (연희궁주)
    3. Princess Suan (수안궁주)
  2. Concubine Myeong-Chun (명춘; d. 1180)
  3. Concubine Sun-Ju (순주; d. 1179)
  4. Unknown
    1. Little Prince Wang Seon-sa (소군 왕선사)
    2. Little Prince Wang Hong-gi (소군 왕홍기)
    3. Little Prince Wang Hong-chu (소군 왕홍추)
    4. Little Prince Wang Hong-gyu (소군 왕홍규)
    5. Little Prince Wang Hong-gyun (소군 왕홍균)
    6. Little Prince Wang Hong-gak (소군 왕홍각)
    7. Little Prince Wang Hong-yi (소군 왕홍이)
    8. Royal Lady Wang (왕녀 왕씨) – married Yi Hwa-ryong (이화룡)

Popular cultureEdit

Notes and referencesEdit

  1. ^ It was said that when Injong was choosing an heir, he preferred his second son for his keen insight and wisdom; however, his older brother came to power, and banished him out of jeolousy.
  • 명종 (in Korean). Doosan Encyclopedia.

See alsoEdit

Preceded by King of Goryeo
Succeeded by