Sunday, July 8, 2007

Republic of Korea Goguryeo FDC

Republic of Korea FDC
Name: Goguryeo Series (3rd)
Issue date: 2007 July 2nd

What was daily life like in Goguryeo? Around the mid 5th century, Goguryeo occupied the largest territory in Korea’s history. The initial mural paintings in ancient tombs, drawn around this period, described the details of daily lives and customs, in the hope that an abundant life in this world will be renewed in the afterlife. The last segment of the Goguryeo series re-introduces the life of the people of Goguryeo seen through the murals in ancient Goguryeo tombs.

Goguryeo people, both men and women, wore the jeogori (jacket) and baji (trousers), with women usually wearing a chima (skirt) on top of the baji. A cloth of different color was attached to the parts of clothing that could get easily dirty and worn-out, such as the edge of the outerwear sleeve or the chima’s hem. This attached cloth also served a decorative purpose. As for their diet, they ground grains such as millet, bean, wheat, barley, African millet, Chinese millet and steamed them in an earthenware steamer. They raised cows, pigs, chickens and dogs, while hunting mountain pigs, roe deer, pheasants, etc. Maekjok, thought to be a Goguryeo meat dish, is the predecessor of today’s bulgogi. Also shown in the tomb murals are various architectural styles. A nobleman’s mansion was composed of sarangchae (men’s quarters) and anchae (women’s quarters). Around the anchae were a kitchen, butcher’s area, rice mill, stable, horse barn, carriage shed, etc. with a garden cultivated on the corner of the wide yard. A commoner’s house had a simple, one or two room structure, as shown by the ruins of house sites. In addition, the murals indicate that the Goguryeo people enjoyed archery, hunting and various arts such as dancing and playing musical instruments.

The new stamps feature the kitchen of the Anak Tomb No. 3 murals (South Hwanghae Province, North Korea) and the part of Muyongchong (Muyong Tomb, Jian, China) murals that describes a host welcoming his guest. The selvage of the stamp sheet features: the part of Deokheung-ri Mural Tomb (Nampo, N\orth Korea) that depicts a noblewoman going out on a visit; several parts of the Muyongchong murals that depict dancers, servants carrying small dining tables and people playing horns; the part of Susan-ri Mural Tomb (Nampo, North Korea) that describes people performing acrobatics; and a Saiho (four-eared pot), Goguryeo’s representative earthenware.

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