The Ancient Koreans

By Kaeffer_L

The Koryo Dynasty

After the Silla Kingdom fell by rebels in 935, the same rebels founded a new Dynasty to take its place, The Koryo Dynasty. The term Koryo was the basis for the word Korea, which titles the country they stood in. It lasted until 1392, when the Koreans rebelled against Mongolian rule. Koryo's rulers did adopt Chinese ideas, but kept distinct Korean aspects, as one Koryo ruler announced,"We have always had a deep adoration for Tang-style culture . . . But our country is a separate land and our people's character is different." (Human Legacy). Multiple ideas came from China, including the civil service exam, changed so only nobles could take it. Government systems were inherited, rather than needing to be elected again. the Korean society was mainly divided between nobility and the common people, similarly to the Japanese. Korea also made multiple improvements on Chinese technology, including metal movable type, which was more durable and more precise, a new blue-green pottery glaze called celadon, that rivaled Chinese porcelain. In the 1200s CE, the Mongols came to Korea, invaded, then occupied Korea, in doing so they forced the Koreans to pay heavy tributes and enslaved many Koreans. In addition, they took Korean artisans to China and Korean men to fight in the Yuan army. This incited vengeance when the Yuan dynasty was weakened, and caused the Koreans to rebel in their downed state, the rebellion coming as a success in expelling the Mongols from Korean lands and eventually resulted in a new dynasty in 1392.

Celadon Pottery

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