Yun Posun

  (Redirected from Yun Bo-seon)

Yun Posun (Korean윤보선; Hanja尹潽善; Korean pronunciation: [junbosʌn] or [jun] [posʌn]; August 26, 1897 – July 18, 1990) was a South Korean politician and Korean independence activist, who served as President of South Korea from 1960 to 1962 before being replaced by the long-serving Park Chung-hee as a result of the May 16 coup in 1961.

Yun Posun
Yun Bo-seon.jpg
Official Portrait
2nd President of South Korea
In office
August 13, 1960 – March 24, 1962
Prime MinisterHo Chong
Chang Myon
Song Yo-chan
Preceded byRhee Syngman
Succeeded byPark Chung-hee
2nd Mayor of Seoul
In office
December 15, 1948 – June 5, 1949
Preceded byKim Hyong-min
Succeeded byLee Ki-poong
Personal details
Born(1897-08-26)August 26, 1897
Sinhang-ri, Dunpo-myeon, Asan County, South Chungcheong, Joseon
(present day South Korea)
DiedJuly 18, 1990(1990-07-18) (aged 92)
Anguk-dong, Jongno District, Seoul, South Korea
Resting placeYun Family Cemetery
Political partyDemocratic (1955)
New Democratic (1967)
(Liberalism in South Korea)
Spouse(s)Lady Min (1910s–1937), Gong Deok-gwi (1948–1990)
Alma materUniversity of Edinburgh (BA, MA)
Korean name
Revised RomanizationYun Boseon
McCune–ReischauerYun Posŏn
Pen name
Revised RomanizationHaewi
Courtesy name
Revised RomanizationGyeongcheon

Having entered politics after World War II, Yun served as Secretary to Korea's Chief of Staff in 1947; and was Mayor of Seoul in 1948. He served as Commerce Minister for the newly liberated Korea from 1949 to 1950. In 1955 Yun helped establish the South Korean Democratic Party.

Early lifeEdit

Yun Posun was born in Dunpo-myeon, Asan, South Chungcheong Province in 1897. He was a son of Yun Chiso (윤치소, 尹致昭, 1871–1944) and Lady Yi Beomsuk (이범숙, 李範淑, 1876–1969). Yun studied in the United Kingdom, graduating with a Master of Arts from the University of Edinburgh in 1930. He returned to Korea in 1932.

Political careerEdit

Yun entered politics in 1945 following Gwangbokjeol (Liberation Day). The first Doctor of Philosophy from Princeton University in Korea, as well as first President of South Korea, Dr. Syngman Rhee, was his mentor. By 1947, Yun was serving as Secretary to the Korean Chief of Staff. In 1948, Rhee appointed Yun to the position of mayor of Seoul. A year later, he was made Minister of Commerce and Industry. However, Yun soon began to disagree with Rhee's authoritarian policies.

While serving as president of the Red Cross Society, he was elected to the National Assembly in 1954. A year later, he co-founded the opposition South Korean Democratic Party. In 1959, he became a representative to the Supreme Council of the Democratic Party.

Short term presidencyEdit

Rhee's government was ousted by a student-led, pro-democracy uprising in 1960; and Yun was elected president on August 13, and appointed Chang Myon as First Minister. In response to the authoritarian excesses of Rhee's regime, South Korea had switched to a parliamentary system; so in fact Yun served merely as a figurehead.

Following Park Chung Hee's coup in 1961, Yun stayed in his post in order to provide some legitimacy to the new regime, but resigned on March 22, 1962. In the following years, Yun received suspended sentences several times for anti-government activities. He opposed Park's authoritarian rule[1] and ran for president twice, in 1963 and 1967, losing each time.

Yun retired from active politics in 1980 and focused his life on cultural activities until his death on July 18, 1990.[2]


See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Mobius, J. Mark (1966). "The Japan-Korea Normalization Process and Korean Anti-Americanism". Asian Survey. 6 (4): 241–248. doi:10.2307/2642122. JSTOR 2642122.
  2. ^ "Yun Po Sun, 92, Dies; Ex-President of Korea". The New York Times. July 19, 1990.
  3. ^ Note: The Kim Seong-su Memoriam

Further readingEdit

  • "Road of Thorns; The National Salvation"; autobiography; (구국의 가시밭길)》 (1967)
  • "Select the Days of Lonely"; (외로운 선택의 나날들)》 (1991)

External linksEdit

Political offices
Preceded by
Heo Jeong
President of South Korea
13 August 1960–22 March 1962
Succeeded by
Park Chung-hee
Preceded by
Kim Hyung-min
Mayor of Seoul City
Succeeded by
Lee Ki-poong
Preceded by
Lim Young-sin
Commerce Minister of South Korea
Succeeded by
Kim Hoon