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The study on the employment of cavalry troops by Wang Geon, the Founder of Goryeo Dynasty

Kim, Myeongjin 1

1경북대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

Through the effective employment of the cavalry units, Taejo(the founder of the country) Wangeon was able to complete the re-unification of the Korean peninsula and thus became the ultimate winner. The Research explored herein boils down to three key areas: First, the Goryeo dynasty secured horses with three procurement methods: purveying horses for themselves, looting horses in a battle, and bringing in horses from outside in a peaceful manner. Second, the Goryeo cavalry forces included mechanized horsemen, ordinary horsemen, strong and swift horsemen, horsemen only carrying simple individual weapons, and crack horsemen. Third, when it came to the readiness of the Goryeo cavalry units to engage in combat, they promptly dealt with the killing blow to a relatively small number of enemy cavalry, thus annihilating them. In addition, the Goryeo cavalry launched preemptive attacks against any enemies with formidable military capability, thereby defeating them. The Goryeo cavalry forces, though, faced two major obstacles. One was the mountainous terrain; the other was the battle against with the Hubaekje’s units armed with lance, long spear Accordingly, Wang Geon employed a tactic that allowed his army to overcome those obstacles in the Battle of Illicheon in September 936, the final battle that Goryeo engaged in on the road toward unification and that led to Wang Geon’s great victory over Hubaekje.

Citation status

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

This paper was written with support from the National Research Foundation of Korea.