Korean Neo-Confucian Academies
a birthplace ofsarim’s public opinion outreach.
Located in Andong City of Gyeongsangbukdo Province and established in 1613, Byeongsan-seowon located on a steep slope, facing a vast expanse of Mt. Byeongsan and Nakdonggang River.
Byeongsan-seowonwas established with the support from the local sarim, students and descendants of the venerated scholar RyuSeongryong(1542-1607). Though started as an educational institute, the academy became the foothold of the local sarim’s activities to share their ideas and opinions. Printing woodblocks in Byeongsan-seowonare a part of “Confucian Printing Woodblocks in Korea,” which was included in the Memory of the World Register in 2015.
View from front
Byeongsan-seowon enshrines the spiritual tablet of RyuSeong-ryong. He served as a Chief State Councilor and supreme commander during the Japanese invasions of Korea in 1592. His critical role in the central government as a high-ranking official illustrates the expansion ofsarim activities into an important player of decision making in carrying out major policies of the royal court, thereby elevating the status of sarim. RyuSeong-ryong wrote several books on war strategies and tactics, including the Record of the Progress of War Situation (Jingbirok), after the battle against Japan that later were published at Byeongsan-seowon. His writings were also disseminated to Japan and shared by Japanese intellectuals. His son RyuJin (1582-1635) who was also a renowned Neo-Confucian scholar was additionally enshrined in 1662.
Ipgyodang name plaque
Ipgyodang lecture hall