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The Historical Significance of the myth of Silla's SeondoSeongmo

  • The Review of Korean History
  • 2010, (99), pp.1-33
  • Publisher : The Historical Society Of Korea
  • Research Area : Humanities > History

Kim, Sun Joo 1

1다산학술문화재단

Accredited

ABSTRACT

In this study, I examine the historical significance of the myth of SeondoSeongmo (the Holy Mother) in Silla, which was appeared in "Samguksagi(Officail History of the Three Kingdoms)" and "Samgungnyusa(Memoirs of Three Kingdoms)". The myth of SeondoSeongmo showed that Silla had the another founding myth in which dynastic founder was born by his mother, adding to widespread founding myth of Hyeok-geo-se which was myth of human birth from Egg. This myth of the mother of dynastic founder which was established in the name of SeondoSeongmo had the meaning as Silla founding myth. In this myth, the dynastic founder relating to SeondoSeongmo was Aryeong, known to us as the spouse of the dynastic founder Hyeok-geo-se. The myth of SeondoSeongmo had background in the area of mountain Seondo (or Seo-ak). The original name of mountain Seondo was "Soo-ri", which meant the top, or high. Also, the area of mountain Seondo had many cultural rermed mains of Silla since pre-historical period. It meant this area had great significance in the history of Silla. I think that mountain Seondo was related to Dolsan goheochon which was one of the six villages, formed Saroguk which was ancient Silla. Dolsan goheochon was leading village in Gyeongju area before the power leaded by Hyeok-geo-se was gathering strength. Mountain Seondo was the Holy mountain of Dolsan goheochon and worshiped as the Holy mountain of Saroguk in early days when Dolsan goheochon kept a hold of Gyeongju area. However, Dolsan goheochon lost the initiative when the power leaded by Hyeok-geo-se was gathering strength. Consequently, the status of mountain Seondo was changing. With this change, the founding myth of Silla was organized with Hyeok-geo-se as the central figure.

Citation status

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