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Seong Sam-mun

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Seong Sammun

Seong Sammun
Pen Name:Maejukheon
  • Period :Early in Choseon Dynasty (1418 ~ 1456)
  • Field:Politics, Literature

He was one of the four vassals killed while trying to reinstate King Danjong to the throne, and is regarded as the most loyal subjects from the Joseon Dynasty.

His family clan was Changnyeong. His other names were Geunbo and Nurong, while he used a pen name, Maejukheon, and poet’s pen name, Chungmun. His father was Seung, who worked for the government under the Dochonggwan post. It's been said that when he was born at his maternal grandparents' home in Noeungol, Hongju, there was a sound coming from the heaven asking, “Is he born yet?” three times, and this was the reason he was named, Sam-mun, which literally means three inquiries.

He passed the Saengwon exam in 1435 (17th year of King Sejong's reign) and passed the Singnyeon test in 1438. After he was appointed a post in Jiphyeonjeon (Hall of Worthies in Joseon Dynasty), he worked with Jeong In-ji, Shin Suk-ju, Choi Hang, Park Paeng-nyeon, and Yi Gae among others to make Hunminjeongeum under the order of King Sejong. In particular, He greatly contributed to the proclamation of Humnimjeongeum in 1446, working with Shin Suk-ju on the precise phoneme by learning it from Hwang chan, a Hallim scholar from the Ming Dynasty, who had been exiled and was staying in Yodong. He also followed a Ming ambassador to the Ming Dynasty in order to perform research on the system of phoneme and Buddhism script.

When Suyangdaegun overtook the throne from his young nephew Danjong in 1455, Seong attempted to reinstate Danjong to the throne by assassinating Suyangdaegun working with his father Seong Seung as well as Yi Gae, Ha Wi-ji, Yu Eung-bu, Park Paeng-nyeon, Yu Seong-won, etc. However, his attempt ended in failure and he was ordered to be killed by dismemberment along with his entire family.

He was posthumously reinstated to his post in 1691, and was promoted to the position of Minister of Interior in 1758 (34th year of King Yeongjo's reign). He was also given a posthumous epithet of Chungmun. In 1676 (2nd of year of King Sukjong's reign), Confucian scholars from Iryang and Hoseo built a shrine close to his old house, and requested the government to dedicate it to the Four Loyal Subjects. The government named the shrine the Nogeun Seowon (Seowon meaning a memorial hall for Confucianist services to honor distinguished scholars and statesmen) and later renamed it as Noeun. It was then closed by Heungseondaewongun’s ordinance to close down seowons Afterward, Confucian scholars set up the tablets of the Four Loyal Subjects and named it Noeun-dan Altar, where memorial services were held.

In 1954, Gojeokhyeonchang Association in Hongseong repaired the altar. THe Noeundan Maintenance Committee holds an annual memorial service on October 15th on the lunar calendar.

Main Historical Site

Teacher Seong Sammum’s Tomb
Teacher Seong Sammum’s Tomb
  • Information of Cultural Properties:Designated Memorial No. 5 by Government of Chungcheongnamdo
  • Location:114-1 Noeunli Hongseonggun Hongbukmyeon Chungcheongnamdo It is the place where his mother’s family lived and where he was born.

Nokeun lecture hall was established in 1676 and was renamed as Noeun lecture hall later. After a while, it was closed in accordance with the closing ordinance by Heungseondaewongun, only left with the remains of the building.

Teacher Seong Sammum Memorial Stone
Teacher Seong Sammum Memorial Stone
  • Information of Cultural Properties:Cultural Property Mateirla No. 164
  • Location:104 Noeunli Hongseonggun Hongbukmyeon Chungcheongnamdo

‘Yuheobi’ is a memorial stone to pay a tribute to ancestors and to pass it down to future generations at the place where once ancestors lived. It was where Song Siyeol was born in 1668 but became an ominous place after that. So people erected the stone and recently built a monument house to preserve the stone. The stone was engraved with Song Siyeol’s writing and Kim Jinsang’s handwriting.

Noeundan
Noeundan
  • Location:Mountain 21-2 Noeunri Hongseonggun Hongbukmyeon Chungcheongnamdo

After Noeun lecture hall that had been established in 1676 was closed in accordance with the closing ordinance by Heunsundaewongun, local confucians built a podium with ancestral tablets of Seong Sammun, Park Paengnyeon, etc. Then they named it as Noeundan holding a memorial service on October 10th of the lunar calendar every year.

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