Korean History Studies in Japan

The 2006 Shigaku Zasshi Historiography Review: Korean Ancient History

Hashimoto Shigeru


Although there were not many specialist publications on Korean ancient history in 2006, there were numerous related articles, especially on archaeology. Several books also appeared.

Solid studies of wooden strips, inscriptions in metal, paper documents, and other primary sources were conducted. Among these, the study of wooden strips has entered a new stage. First, in South Korea too several symposia were held, and the establishment of the Hanguk Mokkan Hakhoe is to be celebrated. Further, the basic source that is Hanguk ŭi kodae mokkan , edited and published by the Changwon National Research Institute of Cultural Heritage (Kungnip Ch'angwŏn Munhwajae Yŏnguso), has been revised and published again, and high resolution digital photographs of the Sŏngsan fortress wooden strips have been placed on the Institute's homepage. I hope that such sharing of information will develop further in the future.

The study of wooden strips has been advancing widely within the perspective of East Asian history. Yi Sŏngsi suggests based upon stelae texts and wooden strips that Silla already had institutionalized the governance of people through its distinct writing culture from the first years of the sixth century, and that the systemization of administration had been influenced by Koguryŏ. (1) Hirakawa Minami considers the phallus-shaped wooden strips excavated at Nŭngsan-ni, Puyŏ, to have been displayed near the east gate of Nasŏng for the purpose of purifying and protecting the Paekche royal capital. Moreover, he believes that these religious ceremonies were transmitted to ancient Japan and today are part of the Dōsojin, or the guardians of the roads, faith. (2) Mikami Yoshitaka points to similarities in the style of calligraphy and the use of Chinese characters in wooden strips found in Japan and in South Korea . In particular, he argues that such trends are strong in wooden strips that have been found outside the capitals. (3) In another article Mikami suggests that this influence upon ancient Japan 's writing culture came primarily from Paekche. (4) Fukatsu Yukinori focuses on the styles of calligraphy on each excavated text bearing writing, and argues that the styles of calligraphy were related to the purposes for which the writing was used. (5) In this way, writing cultures in the Korean peninsula and aspects of their transmission to the Japanese archipelago are becoming gradually clearer through studies of wooden strips. In the future, building upon such research results, furthering the re-examination of inscriptions in metal and paper sources will be necessary.

Regarding Silla history are articles by Kimura Makoto, Hirasawa Kanako, and Kondō Kōichi. Kimura pursues the meaning of each Chinese character written in the section titles in the Silla village document, and he clarifies facts written in that document. He argues that each section title in this document was written for the purpose of collecting physical labor and land taxes, and the Silla state administered villages through such means. (6) Hirasawa believes that Silla's embassy to Japan in 779, its last official dispatch to that country, had features of a tribute embassy because Kim Yangsang sought to improve diplomatic relations with Japan in order to break the instability in domestic politics. (7) Kondō sees the royal territory thought in Ch'oe Ch'iwŏn's Sasan pimyŏng as a political thought adopted in order to reconstruct the state rule that had weakened in the late Silla period. (8)

On Koguryŏ history are publications by Sŏ Kŏnsin, Furuhata Tōru, O Kirhwan, Hamada Kōsaku, and Monta Seiichi. There was much research on the King Kwanggaet'o stele, and Sŏ Kŏnsin, through an examination of newly discovered sources in China , discusses the production and circulation of the Haraishi rubbing by focusing upon detailed particulars of its production. Combining the examination of new sources and his analysis of the Haraishi rubbing, he offers a new chronology of the lime rubbings. (9) Regarding the King Kwanggaet'o stele text, Furuhata speculates that deeply reflected in the text is the foreign policy strategy established by King Changsu and that the stele text was written with an eye toward Koguryŏ people and the envoys of neighboring states of that time. (10) O educes a pattern in the activities of King Kwanggaet'o as seen in the stele text in which if King Kwanggaet'o departs for the front, his return to the royal capital is specified. He speculates that the king was away from the capital for nine years and during that time made P'yŏngyang his base of activity. (11) In another publication O believes that the requisition of guards from areas that had been newly absorbed into Koguryŏ territory by King Kwanggaet'o to protect royal family tombs extended also to the southern area of Paekche south of Hansŏng. (12) Hamada outlines the reign of King Changsu, who succeeded to the throne after King Kwanggaet'o. He believes that King Changsu implemented the requisitioning of guards for the royal family tombs and moved the capital to P'yŏngyang in order to govern Koguryŏ's greatly expanded territory in the Korean peninsula, and also writes that the monarch conducted foreign policy using a Koguryŏ reign name and other procedures for protecting the country's autonomy. (13) Monta discusses wall paintings in which horses clad in armor are depicted. In some cases the entombed man is the leader of the retinue accompanied by horses clad in armor, and in other cases the entombed man is riding a horse clad in armor. Monta suggests that these individuals were in a class-like hierarchical relationship. (14)

On Paekche history are publications by Kameda Shūichi, Tanaka Toshiaki, Nishimoto Masahiro, and Yoshii Hideo. Kameda treats changes in Paekche roof tiles from the Hansŏng period to after Paekche's collapse. Further, he believes that in the transmission of roof tiles to the Japanese archipelago not only the states of Paekche and Japan but also local elite families at various levels of society in Japan were involved. (15) Regarding genealogies of which there are many for the Ungjin period, Tanaka focuses his attention on the unexpected succession of King Munju. He reproduces the political process through a reexamination of related sources. (16) Nishimoto argues that the information in the Nihon shoki regarding the “great disturbance in Paekche” during the reign of Kōgyoku was false information provided by Paekche and that P'ungjang though a royal prince was not the heir to the throne and that his position in the order of succession was low. (17) Yoshii clarifies the changes in the culture of the central political powers in Paekche and the process by which those changes were received by various groups in peripheral areas. He believes that this culture came to be shared throughout Paekche after the late sixth century. (18)

On Parhae history are publications by Kawakami Hiroshi and Cho Pyŏngsun. Kawakami believes that the view of the Yilou, the Wuji, and the Malgal as being descendants of the Sushen was not related to the actual conditions of ethnic groups, but rather was manufactured due to Chinese government demands. Even if Parhae made known its relationship with the Sushen, it was not for domestic purposes and rather took notice of Parhae's relations with Tang China . (19) Regarding the location of Namgyŏng Namhae-bu, Cho suggests that Namgyŏng Namhae-bu was Hamhŭng from such geographic factors as, first, that T'oho-p'o, a place name seen in the Shoku Nihongi , is an error for T'oryŏng-p'o, which is the same place as Toryŏn-p'o, which is found in later historical texts, and, second, that honp'o was presented as a local gift. (20)

On the history of Japanese-Korean relations are publications by Azuma Ushio, Takata Kanta, and Suzuki Hideo. Azuma adds several new papers to already published research in his book Wa to Kaya no kokusai kankyō . While founding the research in document sources he treats interaction from the first century to the sixth century. (21) Takata indicates that the Wa foreign policy of Tae Kaya and of Silla was undertaken with strategic intentions and that, on the other hand, local society became the main actors on the Japanese archipelago side and those relations were conducted through wide-ranging networks. (22) Regarding the meaning of “Imna Nihon-fu,” Suzuki traced and examined the term's usage in the Nihon shoki . He believes that “ fu ” did not mean an organization of officials such as a military administration office, rather it was used to mean “subjects,” and that it could only mean officials who served the king of Wa. (23)

Lastly, regarding historiography, Inoue Naoki believes that Mansenshi consistently had a close connection with the advance into the continent and greatly emphasized the history of Koguryŏ. (24) Yoshii Hideo organized the documents of the investigations of ancient remains conducted by the Government-General of Chōsen and, further, clarified the activities of amateur archaeologists during the colonial period. (25) The symposium report “Colonialism and ‘Korean Culture'” ( Koroniarizumu to ‘Chōsen bunka' ), edited by the Waseda University Institute for Korean Studies ( Waseda Daigaku Chōsen Bunka Kenkyūjo ), clarifies colonialistic features of the Government-General of Chōsen's archaeological investigations and museum policies, and how these were advanced through relationships with Korean society. (26) Through such examinations self-reflection on where the study of Korean ancient history stands is indispensable for drawing a new image of ancient history.



(1) 李成市「漢字受容と文字文化からみた楽浪地域文化 - 六世紀新羅の漢字文化を中心に」早稲田大学アジア地域文化エンシング研究センター編『アジア地域文化学の構築』雄山閣、2006年3月、53-74頁。

(2) 平川南「道祖神信仰の源流 -  古代の道の祭祀と陽物形木製品から 」『国立歴史民俗博物館研究報告』第133号、2006年12月、317-350頁。

(3) 三上喜孝「 日韓木簡学の現状とその整理状況 」『唐代史研究』第九号、2006年7月、38-55頁。

(4) 三上喜孝「 習書木簡からみた文字文化受容の問題 」『歴史評論』第680号、2006年12月、53-63頁。

(5) 深津行徳「東アジアの書体・書風」平川南・沖森卓也・栄原永遠男・山中章編『文字と古代文化5 文字表現の獲得』吉川弘文館、2006年2月、234-260頁。

(6) 木村誠「 統一期新羅村落支配の諸相 」『(首都大学東京都市教養学部人文・社会系)人文学報』第368号、2006年3月、1-42頁。

(7) 平澤加奈子「 八世紀後半の日羅関係 - 宝亀 10 年新羅使を中心に 」『白山史学』第42号、2006年4月、42-73頁。

(8) 近藤浩一「 新羅末期の王土思想と社会変動 - 崔致遠の『四山碑銘』の検討を中心に 」『(東京大学)日本史学研究室紀要』第10号、2006年3月、1-18頁。

(9) 徐 建新『好太王碑拓本の研究』東京堂出版、2006年2月。

(10) 古畑徹「 広開土王碑から東アジア国際情勢を読む - 碑文の ( 読者 ) についての一考察 」『アジア遊学』第91号、2006年9月、26-35頁。

(11) 呉吉煥「 『広開土王碑文』紀年記事にみえる広開土王の軍事行動 」『古代文化』第57巻第12号、2005年12月、634-643頁。

(12) 呉吉煥「 『広開土王碑文』「守墓人 烟 戸」条の再検討 - 「新来韓穢」三六地域を中心に 」『(首都大学東京都市教養学部人文・社会系)メトロポリタン史学』弟2号、2006年12月、110-133頁。

(13) 浜田耕策「高句麗長寿王という時代 - 父王広開土王の治績を継いで」『朝鮮学報』弟199-200輯、2006年7月、231-263頁。

(14) 門田誠一「 高句麗古墳壁画における鎧馬図考 - 鎧馬騎乗人士の階層的位置づけをめぐって 」『鷹陵史学』弟32号、2006年9月、27-52頁。

(15) 亀田修一『日韓古代瓦の研究』吉川弘文館、2006年2月。

(16) 田中俊明「 百済文周王系の登場と武寧王 」『高麗美術館研究紀要』第5号、2006年、155-171頁。

(17) 西本昌弘「 豊璋再論 」『日本歴史』第696号、2006年5月、1-14頁。

(18) 吉井秀夫「考古学から見た百済の国家形成とアイデンティティ」田中良之・川本芳昭編『東アジア古代国家論 - プロセス・モデル・アイデンティティ』すいれん舎、2006年4月、166-186頁。

(19) 河上洋「 東北アジア諸民族の民族的系譜について - 粛慎から渤海へ 」『(河合文化教育研究所)研究論集』第2号、2006年6月、49-55頁。

(20) 趙炳舜「渤海南京南海府の位置推定についての考察 - 『続日本紀』写本の「 吐 号浦」をめぐって」田島公編『禁裏・公家文庫研究』弟二輯、思文閣出版、2006年3月、129-138頁。

(21) 東潮『倭と加耶の国際環境』吉川弘文館、2006年8月。

(22) 高田貫太「五、六世紀の日朝交渉と地域社会」『考古学研究』弟53巻弟二号、2006年9月、24-39頁。

(23) 鈴木英夫「 「任那日本府」と「諸倭臣」 - 語義の分析を中心に 」『国学院大学紀要』第44号、2006年、111-129頁。

(24) 井上直樹「 日露戦争後の日本の大陸政策と「満鮮史」― 高句麗史研究のための基礎的考察 」『洛北史学』第八号、2006年、55-84頁。

(25) 吉井秀夫『植民地朝鮮における考古学的調査の再検討』(平成一五―一七年度科学研究費報告書)。

(26) 早稲田大学朝鮮文化研究所編『コロニアリズムと「朝鮮文化」』(早稲田大学COEプログラムシンポジウム報告書)。


Translated by Kenneth R. Robinson

( Shigaku zasshi vol. 116 no. 5 (2007:5), 246-249. Translated and uploaded with the permission of the Shigakkai.)