Korean dynasties

Historicity. Lists of early rulers in what is now Korea are given in medieval chronicles, principally Samguk sagi (History of the Three Kingdoms) written in the 12th century by Kim Pu-sik at the behest of the king. It draws on earlier, lost, histories. The legendary first ruler of Korea, Tan-gun, 2333 bce.  In addition, scholars differ on many of these dates.

Romanization. Unlike Chinese and Japanese, almost everything now written in Korean uses an alphabet, hangul, in which characters represent sounds, although, as in English, the sound varies with the context. The most widely used romanization, proposed by McCune and Reischauer in 1929, is based on the sound of the word, not its spelling–in other words, it is not a transliteration.  After extensive consideration, in 2000 the government of South Korea instituted a new romanization.  One goal was to eliminate characters not found on the standard computer keyboard (such as those with a breve accent).  Another was to eliminate the apostrophe, because in practice it was too often omitted.  The new romanization prevails on the internet.  Names spelled using older romanizations are provided in square brackets, as they will certainly be encountered in the literature, and are still used by, for example, the Library of Congress in the United States.

Goguryeo (Koguryŏ) Dynasty, 37 bce–668 ce
Date of Reign Ruler ? Relation to
Predecessor
Comment
37 bce–19bce Tongmyeong Wang      
19bce–18ce Yurimyeong Wang   son  
18–44 Taemusin Wang   son  
44–48 Minjung Wang   son of 
Yurimyeong Wang
 
48–53 Mobon Wang   son of 
Taemusin Wang
 
53–146 Taejo Wang   grandson of 
Yurimyeong Wang
 
146–165 Ch'adae Wang   grandson of 
Yurimyeong Wang
 
165–179 Sindae Wang   grandson of 
Yurimyeong Wang
 
179–196 Kogukcheon Wang   son  
196–227 Sansang Wang   son of Sindae  
227–248 Tongcheon Wang Wi-gung?? son  
248–270 Chungcheon Wang   son  
270–292 Seoch'eon Wang   son  
292–300 Pongsang Wang   son  
300–331 Micheon Wang Ŭl–bul?? grandson of 
Pongsang
 
331–371 Kogugwon Wang  Soe?? son  
371–384 Sosurim Wang   son  
384–391 Kogugyang Wang   son of
Kogugweon Wang
 
391–413 Kwanggaeto Wang   son  
100–122   Kung    
122–132 Su–sŏng    
132–190   Paekke    
    Nammu    
–230 Iimo or Yŏn–u son  
    Wi–gung son  
413–490 Changsu Wang   son  
491–519 Munjamyeong   grandson  
519–531 Anjang Wang   son  
531–545 Anwon Wang   son of
Munjamyeong Wang
 
545–559 Yangwon Wang   son  
559–590 Pyeongweon Wang
[P'yŏngwŏn]
  son  
590–618 Yeongyang Wang   son  
618–642 Yeongnyu Wang   son of
Pyeongweon Wang
 
642–668 Pojang Wang   grandson of
Pyeongweon Wang
 
668–670, part of Tang empire
670 Ansun Wang      
670–677 Pojang Wang   restoration  
677–755, part of Tang empire
755–901, part of Silla
901–908 Kung-ye      
918, conquered by Goryeo

 

Baekje (Paekche) Dynasty, 18 bce–660 ce
Dates of
Reign
Ruler Relation to
Predecessor
Comment
194 bce-255 bce Chi-chuan    
155 bce-125 bce An Wang    
125 bce-112 bce Hye Wang    
112 bce-82 bce Myeong Wang    
81 bce-41 bce Hyeo Wang    
41 bce-26 bce Siang Wang    
26 bce-19 bce Won Wang    
18 bce–29ce Onjo Wang    
28–77 Taru Wang son  
77–128 Kiru Wang son  
128–166 Kaeru Wang son  
166–214 Chogo Wang son  
214–234 Kusu Wang son  
234 Saban Wang son  
234–286 Koi Wang son of Kaeru Wang  
286–298 Chaekkye Wang son  
298–304 Punseo Wang son  
304–344 Piryu Wang son of Kusu Wang  
344–346 Gye Wang son of Punseo Wang  
346–375 Keun Ch'ogo Wang son of Piryu Wang  
375–384 Keun Kusu Wang son  
384–385 Ch'imnyu Wang son  
385–392 Chinsa Wang son of Kŭn Kusu Wang  
392–405 Asin (Ahwa) Wang son of Ch'imnyu Wang  
405–420 Jeonji Wang
[Chŏnji]
son  
420–427 Kuisin Wang son  
427–455 Piyu Wang son  
455–475 Kaero Wang son  
475–477 Munju Wang son  
477–479 Samgeun Wang son  
479–501 Dongseong Wang grandson of 
Kaero Wang
 
501–523 Muryŏng Wang son  
523–554 Sŏng Wang son  
554–598 Widŏk Wang son  
598–599 Hye Wang grandson of 
Seong Wang
 
599–600 Pŏp Wang son  
600–641 Mu Wang son  
641–660 Uija Wang son  
660–663 Pungjang Wang    
663–892, part of Tang empire
892–935 Chinhwon Wang    
935–936 Singŏm Wang    
936, conquered by Goryeo

 

Silla Dynasty, 57 bce–935
Dates of
Reign
Ruler Relation to
Predecessor
Comment
57 bce–4 Hyeokkeose Keoseogan    
4–24 Namhae Chachaung son  
24–57 Yuri Isagŭm son  
57–80 T'arhae Isagŭm son–in–law of Namhae Ch'ach'aung  
80–112 Pasa Isagŭm son of Yuri Isagŭm  
112–134 Chima Isagŭm son  
134–154 Ilsong Isagŭm son of Yuri Isagŭm  
154–184 Adalla Isagŭm son  
184–196 Porhyu Isagŭm grandson of 
T'arhae Isagŭm
 
196–230 Naehae Isagŭm    
230–247 Chobun Isagŭm grandson of 
Porhyu Isagŭm
 
247–261 Ch'ŏmhae Isagŭm grandson of 
Porhyu Isagŭm
 
262–284 Mich'u Isagŭm son-in-law of 
Chobun Isagŭm
 
284–298 Yurye Isagŭm son of Chobun Isagŭm  
298–310 Kirim Isagŭm grandson of 
Chobun Isagŭm
 
310–356 Hurhae Isagŭm grandson of 
Naehae Isagŭm
 
356–402 Naemul Marikpan    
402–417 Silseong Marikpan    
417–458 Nulchi Marikpan son of Naemul Marikpan  
458–479 Chabi Marikpan son  
479–500 Soji Marikpan son  
500–514 Chijŭng Wang descendent of 
Naemul Marikpan
 
514–540 Pŏphŭng Wang son  
540–576 Chinhŭng Wang grandson of 
Chijung Wang
 
576–579 Chinji Wang son  
579–632 Chinpyeong Wang grandson of Chijung Wang  
632–647 Seondeok Yeowang (queen) daughter  
647–654 Chindok Yeowang (queen) great-granddaughter
of Chinhung Wang
 
654–661 (T'aejong) Muyŏl Wang grandson of 
Chinji Wang
660-Silla & Tang defeat Baekje.
661–681 Munmu Wang son 668: Silla & Tang defeat Goguryeo.
676: Silla drive out Tang, creating a unified Korea.  
681–692 Sinmun Wang son  
692–702 Hyoso Wang son  
702–737 Seongdeok Wang son of 
Sinmun Wang
 
737–742 Hyoseong Wang son  
742–765 Gyeongdeok Wang
[Kyŏngdŏk]
son of 
Sŏngdŏk Wang
 
765–780 Hyegong Wang son  
780–785 Seondeok Wang descendent of 
Naemul Marikpan
 
785–798 Wonseong Wang    
798–800 Soseong Wang grandson of 
Weonseong Wang
 
900–809 Aejang Wang son  
809–826 Heondŏk Wang grandson of 
Weonseong Wang
 
826–836 Hungdeok Wang grandson of 
Weonseong Wang
 
836–838 Huigang Wang great-grandson of 
Weonseong Wang
 
838–839 Minae Wang great-grandson of 
Weonseong Wang
 
839 Sinmu Wang great-grandson of 
Weonseong Wang
 
839–857 Munseong Wang son  
857–861 Hŏnan Wang great-grandson of 
Weonseong Wang
 
861–875 Gyeogmun Wang
[Kyŏngmun]
grandson of 
Huigang Wang
 
875–886 Hon'gang Wang son  
886–887 Cheonggang Wang son of 
Gyeongmun Wang
 
887–897 Chinsong Yeowang (queen) daughter of 
Gyeongmun Wang
 
897–912 Hyogong Wang son of 
Hon'gang Wang
 
912–917 Sindŏk Wang son-in-law of 
Hon'gang Wang
 
917–924 Gyeongmyong Wang
[Kyŏngmyong]
son  
924–927 Gyeongae Wang
[Kyŏngae] 
son of 
Sindŏk Wang
 
927–935 Gyeongsun  Wang
[Kyŏngsun]
   

Parhae Dynasty, 698–926
Dates of
Reign
Ruler Relation to
Predecessor
Comment
698–719 Ko Wang    
719–737 Mu Wang son  
737–794 Mun Wang son  
794 Wang Wŏnŭi son  
794 Seong Wang
[Sŏng]
grandson of 
Mun Wang
 
794–809 Kang Wang son of 
Mun Wang
 
809–812 Jong Wang
[Chong]
son  
812–817 Hŭi Wang son of 
Kang Wang
 
817–818 Kan Wang son of 
Kang Wang
 
818–830 Seon Wang descendent of 
Ko Wang
 
830–857 Wang Ijin grandson of 
Seon Wang
 
857–871 Wang Keonhwang grandson of 
Seon Wang
 
871–893 Wang Hyeonseok 
[Hyŏnsŏk]
son  
893–906 Wang Wihae son  
906–926 Wang Inseon
[Insŏn]
son  

 

Goryeo (Koryŏ) period, 918–1392
Dates of
Reign
Ruler Relation to
Predecessor
Comment
918–943 Taejo    
943–945 Hyejong son  
945–949 Jeonjong
[Chŏngjong]
son of Taejo  
949–975 Kwangjong son of Taejo  
975–981 Gyeongjong
[Kyŏngjong]
son  
981–997 Seongjong grandson of
Taejo
 
997–1009 Mokchong son of
Gyeongjong
 
1009–1031 Hyeonjong grandson of
Taejo
 
1031–1034 Tŏkchong son  
1034–1046 Jeongjong
[Chŏngjong]
son of
Hyeonjong
 
1046–1083 Munjong son of
Hyeonjong
 
1083 Sunjong son  
1083–1094 Seonjong
[Sŏnjong]
son of
Munjong
 
1095–1105 Sukchong son of
Munjong
 
1105–1122 Yejong son  
1122–1146 Injong son  
1146–1170 Uijong son  
1170–1197 Myeongjong son of Injong  
1197–1204 Sinjong son of Injong  
1204–1211 Huijong son  
1211–1213 Kangjong son of 
Myeongjong
 
1213–1259 Kojong son  
1259–1274 Wonjong son  
1274–1308 Chungyeol Wang
[Ch'ungyŏl] 
son  
1308–1313 Chungseon Wang son  
1313–1330 Ch'ungsuk Wang son  
1330–1332 Junghye Wang
[Ch'unghye]
son  
1332–1339 Ch'ungsuk Wan Restored.  
1339–1344 Junghye Wang
[Ch'unghye]
Restored.  
1344–1348 Ch'ungmok Wang son  
1348–1351 Jungjeong Wang
[Ch'ungjŏng] 
son of 
Jungmok Wang
 
1351–1374 Kongmin Wang son of 
Jungsuk Wang
 
1374–1388 U Wang son  
1388–1389 Jang Wang
[Ch'ang]
son  
1389–1392 Kongyang Wang descendent of
Sinjong
 

 

Joseon (Choson) Dynasty*, 1392–1910
Dates of
Reign
Ruler Relation to
Predecessor
Comments
1392–1398 Taejo
or Yi Seong–gye,
[Yi Sŏnggye]
  Abdicated. Died 1408.
1398–1400 Jeongjong
[Chŏngjong]
son Abdicated. Died 1419.
1400–1418 Taejong brother Abdicated. Died 1422.
1418–1450 Sejong son  
1450–1452 Munjong son  
1452–1468 Danjong
[Tanjong]
son Deposed. Died 1457.
1455–1468 Sejo son of Sejong  
1468–1469 Yejong son  
1469–1494 Seongjong
[Sŏngjong]
nephew  
1494–1506 Yeonsangun
[Yŏnsan–gun]
son Deposed. Died 1506.
1506–1544 Jungjong
[Chungjong]
brother  
1544–1545 Injong son  
1545–1567 Myeongjong
(Myŏngjong)
brother  
1567–1608 Seonjo
(Sŏnjo)
nephew  
1608–1623 Gwanghaegun
(Kwanghae–gun)
son Deposed. Died 1641.
1623–1649 Injo nephew  
1649–1659 Hyojong son  
1659–1674 Hyeonjong
[Hyŏnjong]
son  
1674–1720 Sukjong
[Sukchong]
son  
1720–1724 Gyeongjong
[Kyŏngjong]
son  
1724–1776 Yeongjo
[Yŏngjo]
brother  
1776–1800 Jeongjo
[Chŏngjo]
grandson  
1800–1834 Sunjo
[Sonjo]
son  
1834–1849 Heonjong
[Hŏnjong]
grandson  
1849–1864 Cheoljong
[Ch'ŏlchong]
grandnephew
of Jeongjo
 
1864–1907 Gojong
[Kojong]
great–grandnephew
of Jeongjo
Deposed. Died 1919.
1907–1910 Sunjong son Deposed. Died 1926.

*It is also known informally as the Yi Dynasty.

Japanese occupation 1910–1945
U.S. and U.S.S.R. administration 1945–1948

Ki–baik Lee.
Edward W. Wagner, translator, with Edward J. Shultz.
A New History of Korea.
Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press for Harvard–Yenching Institute, 1984.

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