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Tightrope Walking

Traditional Korean tightrope-walking performance is referred to as jultagi (Kor. 줄타기) and, in contrast with similar foreign genres, combines acrobatics with dancing, singing, and humor. The tightrope walker exchanges jokes with another member of the troupe who is standing on the ground. The accompanying music is played on string and wind instruments. Jultagi was one of the most popular forms of entertainment in traditional Korea. The performances attracted not only large crowds of common people,

Korean Seasonal Customs



An underskirt, or petticoat, of 3-5 layers attached to one waistband that was worn under ceremonial dress to prevent the skirt from sticking to the body and make it spread out wide. Mujigi is the name of a petticoat of 3-5 layers that was worn under ceremonial dress not to create a triangular silhouette but to make the skirt nice and full. It is similar to the garment called seongun (skirts of different lengths attached to the same waistband to make the outer skirt spread out wide), which was w

Korean Clothing



Depraved monk appearing in masked dance-dramas. A depraved monk who leads a vulgar life although he is a Buddhist monk and ridicules his teacher, Nojang. Meokjung introduces himself as a Buddhist monk, but his speech and behavior is vulgar. In addition, he enjoys singing and dancing and seduces women while playing the beopgo (Buddhist drum). And when Meokjung finds out the identity of Nojang (old monk), he makes fun of him by likening him to an animal or an object. Such features of the character

Korean Folk Arts


Boat Ritual

Baegosa is a worship ritual to pray for a big catch and safety on a boat. This ritual is held privately by boat owners to worship the boat guardian deity Baeseonang, or as part of communal rituals like pungeoje or dangje. As a private ritual, baegosa is observed on seasonal holidays, among which the biggest is held on Jeongwoldaeboreum (Great Full Moon) on the fifteenth day of the first lunar month. It is also held when a new boat has been purchased or constructed; when setting out for a catch;

Korean Folk Beliefs


Pyeongtaek Nongak

Nongak handed down in Pyeonggung-ri, Paengseong-eup in Pyeongtaek, which combines the nongak performed during farm work carried out by collective farm labor groups called dure in the Pyeongtaek region and the entertainment-based nongak performed in the southern part of Gyeonggi-do Province. Pyeongtaek Nongak was designated National Intangible Cultural Heritage No. 11-a in 1985. Thanks to the vast plains called Sosaetdeuri, agriculture thrived in the Pyeongtaek region and nongak likewise flourish

Korean Folk Arts


Gwangju Chilseok Gossaum Nori

A game clashing two gos, long structures made of logs and straw, to decide a winner. The origin of Gossaum Nori remains unknown due to the lack of any historical record, however, the tradition was passed down through word of mouth. According to the data, Chilseok Village has a strong, earthly energy, based on the principles of Feng-Shui, due to its characteristic of taking the form of an ox laying down. This resulted in the villagers being unable to raise dogs there, leading to their raising gee

Korean Folk Arts


Dukkeobijip Jitgi Nori

A game making cave-shaped houses by placing and patting wet dirt or sand over the back of one hand, and then slowly trying to remove it. Also called, Moraejip Jitgi Nori, this iconic folk game of Korea has children making houses with dirt or sand. First, the player places wet dirt or sand on the back of one hand, and then pats the dirt with the other hand to mold it into a solid structure. The patting takes patience and attention since the hand below dirt needs to be remain still throughout the

Korean Folk Arts