Historical Relic—Sungjondaebi

Date: 09/06/2019 | Source: Uriminzokkiri (En) | Read original version at source

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Sungjondaebi (grand monument to war victory) is a historical relic which conveys the history of the Korean people who fought against foreign aggressors to defend their country.

This monument stands in Josan-dong, about 12 km away from the Tuman River in the Sonbong area, Rason Municipality in the northeastern part of the DPRK.

It was set up on a granite foundation in 1882 in order to hand down to posterity the feats of patriotic General Ri Sun Sin (1545-1598) in the 16th century who beat back foreign aggressors and safeguarded the northern tip of Korea.

Inscribed in bold relief on its façade is the letter “Grand monument to war victory”, and on its back are the contents that tell the story about Ri Sun Sin who commanded a small number of Korean soldiers to lay an ambush in a strategic point to deal a crushing blow to superior foreign invaders in 1587 and that the locals called the place Sungjondae.

At the age of 42, Ri was appointed manho (commanding officer) of jin (low-level local military and administrative unit in the period of the feudal Joson dynasty) in Hamgyong Province and performed distinguished services to consolidating the northern frontier of the country into an impregnable fortress in a little over one year.

Since then, he began to establish his fame as a patriot among the locals.

During the Imjin Patriotic War (1592-1598) he led the naval forces to destroy the Japanese aggressors and rendered great services to winning victory.

Later, the locals named the peak in the northeastern part of their village Sungjonbong (peak dedicated to war victory) in praise of his distinguished feats he had performed when he was the commander of the Josan region. They, irrespective of age and sex, turned out as one to carry stones to the peak and erected a tower, which was about 2.5 metres high.

Later, a senior commanding officer in Hamgyong Province happened to see the tower during his inspection tours. Noting that it was too small compared to the feats of Ri Sun Sin, he instructed to build a grand monument, the present monument.

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