Goguryo was a country of the Korean Peninsula

The Chinese History Encyclopedia, published in 2000, and the most authoritative Chinese dictionary published in 1999 both describe Goguryo as a country on the Korean Peninsula, it was confirmed on Aug. 15.

The Chinese History Encyclopedia is a vast book of 3,502 pages in two volumes using the basic records of Chinese history and written by 780 historians belonging to the Social and Science Institute under the Chinese State Administrative Council and other institutions. Maps in Volume II indicates Goguryo as a nation outside Chinese territory on no fewer than seven occasions.

In particular, in a map of the Song-Wei era (A.D. 449), when China was divided into the Wei dynasty in the North and the Song dynasty in the south, the Wei dynasty’s territory stops at the Liaohe of Liaodong peninsula with Goguryo being identified as a separate country beyond the border and comprising the entire Liaodong peninsula as well as the northern half of the Korean peninsula.

The Goryo section on page 2505 of Volume II also states: It (Goryo) also goes by the name of Goguryo. It was founded by Jumong with Pyongyang as its capital and its territory comprising the northern part of the present Korean peninsula. It became powerful after 4th century A.D., vying for supremacy with Shilla and Paekche. During the late Sui dynasty and the early Tang dynasty, China and Goguryo fought with each other on several occasions, while also lived peacefully together at other times.

In China’s most authoritative dictionary, too, Goguryo is clearly described as an ancient country of Chosun. In the Goguryo section on page 5788 in Volume III of the three-volume dictionary, published in 1999 by 554 scholars, it states: It is called Goguryo, Guryo or Goryo. As an ancient country of Chosun, it conquered the land of the Nakrang Army in the south.

Later Paekche and Shilla rose producing the period called the three-kingdom era in the history of Chosun. In the King Gwanggaeto section on page 2399 of Volume II, the book describes the king as the king of Goguryo of Chosun (392-413). His penname was Great King of Youngrak.

By Choi Gang (ckang@news.go.kr)