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Re-exploration on the Meaning of Hongsan Battle in 1376 and its Battlefield

Lim, Hyung-soo 1

1고려대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

Hongsan (鴻山) battle was a combat in which General Choi Young (崔瑩) defeated Japanese pirates (倭寇) at the Hongsan region who invaded Geum River (錦江) basin in July 1376 (2nd year of King Woo, 禑王), which is considered as one of great military victories over the course of 40-year fight against Japanese Pirates worthy of special mention and is assessed as a 'Sweeping Victory (大捷).' This study briefly summarizes the background and development process of Hongsan Battle and reviewes if there is no problem regarding the existing assessment of it as a 'Sweeping Victory' and if the recognition that Taebong Mountain Fortress (胎峰山城) was its battlefield is valid. This study pointed out that Hongsan Battle somewhat falls short to be assessed as a Sweeping Victory (大捷) in that not only the scale of military force mobilized and military accomplishments gained by the battle are unclear but also the battle did not have significant effect on the conditions of the war even after the battle. And yet, study evaluated that Hongsan Battle still holds significant historical meaning of its own in that it lived up to desperate requirements of the time to a certain degree even though it did not make accomplishments enough to satisfy expectations. Study then examined if the recognition that the battlefield of Hongsan was Taebong Mountain Fortress is correct. This recognition was the result of establishment of Hongsan Memorial Stone (鴻山大捷碑) in the process of designating Taebong Mountain Fortress as one of the remains of historical national protection in the late 1970s, which was a hasty outcome without the support of documentary records or excavation survey. Thus, careful comparison of geographical conditions with historical records of Hongsan Battle reveals considerable discrepancies. Although it is very difficult to assert any specific region as the battlefield of Hongsan Battle given the lack of related data available, as the result of assumption based on geographical characteristics which appeared in the historical data, there is high possibility that the battlefield was actually valleys around Hongyang-ri (鴻良里).

Citation status

* References for papers published after 2022 are currently being built.