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Sitting Ritual

Anjeungut, or sitting ritual, is a form of shamanic ritual that centers on the practice of dokgyeong, or scripture recitation, by sorceresses or sorcerers. In anjeungut, the sorcerer is in a seated position, reciting the scriptures to his own accompaniment of janggu (hourglass drum), jing (gong), or kkwaenggwari (small gong). This ritual has been preserved mainly in Chungcheong and North Jeolla provinces. In Chungcheong Province, anjeungut involves more than recitation, a complex procedure that

Korean Folk Beliefs

Buan Nongak

Nongak (farmers’ music) handed down in Buan, Jeollabuk-do Province. The history of Buan Nongak is traced back to Sodo (Kor. 소도, Chin. 蘇塗) in Jiban Country (Kor. 자반국, Chin. 支半國), which was one of the statelets of Mahan (a loose confederacy existing from around the 1st century BCE to the 5th century CE). Historical documents prove that durenongak (nongak accompanying work by communal farm labor groups called dure) gained wide popularity in the Buan region in the 19th century during the late Joseon

Korean Folk Arts


The term chibae literally means “a person who strikes something” and is used in reference to a person who performs in a nongak (farmers’ music) troupe. In the historical and traditional sense, chibae is similar to the term jaebi (Kor. 잽이, Chin. 尺). Etymologically, the origin of the word chibae can be found in the term jaebi, a person who holds a musical instrument. During the Three Kingdoms period, jaebi was used in the context of performing arts to refer to Silla specialists in music, song, dan

Korean Folk Arts

Gimje Nongak

Nongak (farmers’ music) handed down in the Gimje region ofJeollabukdo Province. During the Samhan Period, the Gimje area was the location of a state named Byeokbiri, the largest of the 54 states of Mahan, one of the three confederacies of Samhan. It was also the location of Korea’s largest ancient reservoir, named Byeokgolje, which is where early rice farming was carried out in Korea. It can be deduced that the area, being an old farming district, has a long history of nongak as well. “Joseon wa

Korean Folk Arts

Jeongeup Nongak

Nongak (farmers’ music) handed down in the Jeongeup region of Jeollabuk-do Province. The history of Jeongeup Nongak can be traced as far back as the festivals held in the fifth and tenth months of the year in the ancient Mahan Confederacy, which was located in the Jeongeup area in ancient times. “Akji” (Kor. 악지, Chin. 樂志), the chapter on music in “Goryeosa” (Kor. 고려사, Chin. 高麗史, lit, History of Goryeo, ) mentions “mugo” (Kor. 무고, Chin. 舞鼓, lit. dance drum), which refers to dancing and playing th

Korean Folk Arts

Iri Nongak

Nongak (farmers’ music) handed down mostly in Iksan, Jeollabuk-do Province. Iri Nongak largely has two lineages: one is the lineage of the Iri Nongak that has designated National Intangible Cultural Heritage No. 11-3, and the other is the native nongak passed down in the Iksan area. Iksan is geographically located in the middle of the Honam Udo Nongak and Honam Jwado Nongak regions, while having mutual influence with Chungcheong Nongak via the Geumgang River. For this reason, Iksan Nongak has a

Korean Folk Arts
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