"Jongmyo - the Joseon Royal Shrines - Part I" Jongmyo Shrine Tip by mke1963

Jongmyo Shrine, Seoul: 17 reviews and 49 photos


Jongmyo has a sacred air about it, and when looking at the two shrine halls, no buildings intrude on the skyline. Above their roofs is a fringe of trees along the ridge that runs behind. The whole complex has been carefully laid out and even though the entrance opens on to one of Seoul?s busiest streets, the landscaping and the thick forest keep Jongmyo tranquil and solemn.
Many visitors are likely to approach Jongmyo from Changgyeonggung, so I, too, start at the back of the complex at the top of the hill. The path runs down to the Yeongnyeongjeon (and you thought that the Changgyeonggung names were difficult!), the second shrine complex to be built, in 1421, as they had run out of cubicles at the original Chongjeon complex, built in 1395 by King Taejo, founder of the Joseon dynasty. On the death of each monarch in the Joseon dynasty, a memorial tablet was created and solemnly laid in a cubicle in the long building. Each cubicle is separated from the next by a blind, rather than a solid wall, so keeping the spirit of the Joseon dynasty connected to each other. The inhabitant of each cubicle is listed in Korean at the entrance.There are 49 monarchs memorialized in the Chongjeon and 33 in the Yeongnyeongjeon, with a further 83 memorial tablets for meritorious individuals elsewhere.

Address: 157 Jong-ro, Jongno 1(il).2(i).3, (sam).4(sa), Jongno-gu, Seoul
Directions: The front entrance is east of Jongno Station. The back entrance is via Changgyeongung.
Phone: +82 2-765-0195
Website: http://jikimi.cha.go.kr/english/world_heritage_new/culture_treasure_03.jsp?mc=EN_04_01

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  • Written Apr 10, 2005
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