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Heavenly Son Rock

This legend narrates the origins of Cheonjabawi (Heavenly Son Rock) in Ungcheon, in Changwon, South Gyeongsang Province. A geomancer was looking for a good location for his father’s grave and found an auspicious site (myeongdang) on the waters off Cheonjabong (Heavenly Son Peak). There he saw an otter, who was half-human-half-beast come in and out of a cave by the sea and followed it, to learn that the creature was the child of the daughter of a gentryman from Ungcheon, kidnapped by an otter. Th

Korean Folk Literature


Dokdo legends narrate the stories surrounding the eighty-nine islands in Dokdo-ri, part of the village of Ulleung, in Ulleung County, North Geyongsang Province. One of the legends related to Dokdo is“ Gumeongbawi (Hole Rock), ”about a rock located off the shore of Cheonbu Village, which was originally on the waters off Hyeonpo Village. An elderly villager with mighty powers tied up the rock to a boat and tried to take it to faraway waters. But the rock would not be pulled away, and the old man,

Korean Folk Literature

Yi Seong-gye

This legend narrates the story of Yi Seong-gye, founder of Joseon dynasty. Folk narratives about Yi Seong-gye justify his founding of a new dynasty through stories of the virtuous accomplishments of Yi’s ancestors; of divine signs like his reception of the golden ruler; of heroic acts like the defeat of the Japanese invader Ajibaldo; and of receiving help from a tiger, considered the guardian of the people. On the other hand, the public’s nostalgia for the myriad grassroots heroes from late Gory

Korean Folk Literature
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