1   2   3
 
 
  
In such a circumstance where languages and writngs were doing different job from each other, somehow it contributed to maintaining power of the ruling class of those days even though they also felt uneasy on this circumstance. Only persons belonging to the ruling class were allowed to learn Chinese writing and take a test for selecting officials, which was the entrance to the higher society and the chance to grap political power and/or economical benefits.

From the viewpoint of majority, the appearance of new letters, which was easy for ordinary people to learn, was hardly considered or even unwelcomed because they enjoyed various kinds of vested rights based on that structure. Considering this, it was a very striking event in its political aspect that King Sejong invented Han-geul to contribute to a better life for the sake of ordinary people. Sejong crrectly predicted that the ruling class would dislike and resisted new letters, so that he progressed it very secretely.



Since Sejong had to do this job in secret, it was not easy to borrow hands of his ministers. Many people assumed that Sejong and scholars of Jiphyunjeon() cooperated to invent Han-geul or Sejong let the scholars create Han-geul. But, those assumptions do not have any factual grounds. The records of those days such as Sejong Sillok or Preface of Jung In Jee altogether emphasize that Sejong created Han-geul by himself.

Some people can say, because a work done by ministers could be passed to the achievement of King according to customs in those days, such records were left. But it is a prejudice without evidence as well. Throughout the authentic record of Sejong (Sejong Sillok), the expression "By himself()" was used in only Hunmin-Chong?m among many works accomplished in the period of Sejong.

If the work was done by ministers under the order of Sejong, then it was clearly addressed that it was the work of ministers without exceptions. As the facts that Sejong invented Hunmin-Chongum by himself were addressed clearly several times in authentic records and other records, there should be proper evidences.

If we want to find people who assisted Sejong, they were not ministers but the Crown Prince(, later Munjong) and Suyang-Daegun(, later Sejo). The records in preface of written by Sin Suk-Ju, 㧡 in witten by Song Sam-Mun say that Munjong assisted Sejong to produce Han-gul.

And afrer invention of Han-gul, Sejong mobilized lower class officials of Jiphyonjon related to Han-gul for translation of , which was the first work in public, then he made the Crown Prince, Suyang-Daegun and Anpyong-Daegun supervise the work. Because the princes knew Han-g?l well, the work could be assigned to them.

However, as soon as lower class officials of Jiphyonjon were mobilized, Choi Man-Ri the head (Bujehak, ) of Jiphyonjon and other ministers presented a petition(Sangsomun, ߾) to the king on 20th day of February, and tried to stop the project related to Han-gul.

If the invention of Han-gul had been publicly processed with mobilization of the scholars of Jiphyonjon prior to December 1443, Choi Man-Ri and the fellows didn't need to wait to present a petition until February 1444. Therefore the scholars of Jiphyonjon involved in Han-gul project in February 1444 after Han-gul had been invented already.

Choi Man-Ri says in his petition, "It is not right that the King is taking care of Han-gul project that is not so urgent, even when you needed medical treatment for recuperation." Against this, Sejong showed significant scholastic self-confidence through saying "Do you know Unso()? and Do you know Four tones(Sasong,)", Seven sounds(Chilum,) and how many Jamo(ٽ) are there? If I don't correct the Unso(), who will correct it?".

According to these records, we can see that Sejong was an outstanding scholar as he had deep scholarship of Chinese phonology, based on this, had ability to analyze our language precisely and to invent scientific characters suitable to write our language. And also he had a strong love to Han-gul, as he kept studied even being in journey for medical treatment.

Sejong can be considered as the first one if we were looking for someone who had scholastic ability to make Han-gul in those days. Also we can consider what the reason was for him to have strong love for Han-gul business. Was it probably because he invented it by himself?
1   2   3