Item ID: 9425 Pak Ssi ch’irhyŏn kŏŭi rok [or] Pak Ssi chirhyeon geoeui rok 朴氏七賢舉義錄 [Record of the Righteous Resistance of Seven Worthies of the Pak Lineage (of Chinwŏn 珍原)]. Chae-hwan 朴在煥 PAK, attributed author, Je-hwan or PAK.
Pak Ssi ch’irhyŏn kŏŭi rok [or] Pak Ssi chirhyeon geoeui rok 朴氏七賢舉義錄 [Record of the Righteous Resistance of Seven Worthies of the Pak Lineage (of Chinwŏn 珍原)]

Records of the Anti-Japanese & Anti-Manchu Resistance

Pak Ssi ch’irhyŏn kŏŭi rok [or] Pak Ssi chirhyeon geoeui rok 朴氏七賢舉義錄 [Record of the Righteous Resistance of Seven Worthies of the Pak Lineage (of Chinwŏn 珍原)]

52 folding leaves. Large 8vo (298 x 190 mm.), orig. patterned semi-stiff wrappers (wrappers a little soiled), old stitching (stitching partially defective). [Korea]: Preface dated 1801, Afterword dated 1816.

A very rare edition of this collection of documents relating to seven men and their actions during the Imjin War and the Manchu invasion of Korea in 1636. The invasions of Korea, first by the Japanese in the 1590s and then by the Manchus in the 1620s and 1630s, were important moments in the course of events that led to the rise of the Manchu Qing empire in continental East Asia. The large-scale fighting and movement of troops from Japan and China into the Korean peninsula in the late 16th century mark a watershed in Korean history. The cost of the wars also severely weakened the Chinese Ming dynasty, which eventually collapsed in 1644, ushering in an entirely new balance of power in the region.

The “seven worthies” of the title include Pak Kwang-jŏn 朴光前 (1526-97, style name Chuk-ch’ŏn or Juk-cheon 竹川), and his sons Kŭn-hyo 朴根孝 (1550-1607) and Kŭn-je 根悌, all of whom distinguished themselves during the Japanese invasion in the 1590s, and grandsons and great-grandsons who resisted the Manchus in 1636 as commanders of irregulars.

Our copy has a Preface dated 1801 by Song Hwan-gi 宋煥箕 (1728-1807), a Chosŏn scholar-official. Song writes that, “in the history of armed invasions of our dynasty, none were more brutal than the two disorders of the imjin (1592) and pyŏngja (1636) years.” Four generations of the Pak family — “fathers and sons, ancestor and descendants, older and younger brothers, uncles and nephews” — had distinguished themselves during those trying times. Song ends the Preface by saying that “the person who now came to ask me for my text is Chae-hwan, an eighth-generation descendant of Chuk-ch’ŏn.” The wording suggests that Pak Chae-hwan edited the work, hence our attribution of authorship.

We find no matches to our copy in either WorldCat or the Korean Old and Rare Collection Information System (KORCIS). In addition to the Preface dated 1801, our copy has a colophon (pal 跋) by Yi 李鶴來 (also known as Yi Ch’ŏng 李𤲟, 1792-1861) dated 1816. Some copies described in KORCIS have 20 characters per column, while our copy has 19 on some pages and 18 on others. Some catalogues ascribe authorship of the book to Pak Chung-hong 朴重洪 (1802-72), probably because one edition of the present work was published in 1856 along with a collection of Pak Kwang-jŏn’s works that Pak Chung-hong edited. This is the case with the Harvard-Yenching copy (K 5568.2 4398 [4], WorldCat 40280697), which has a Preface dated 1856 (byŏngjin 丙辰).

References

Encyclopedia of Korean Culture 한국민족문화대백과사전. https://encykorea.aks.ac.kr/

Korean Old and Rare Collection Information System 한국고문헌종합목록. https://www.nl.go.kr/korcis/index.do.

Price: $5,500.00

Item ID: 9425