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Wednesday, 26 June 2013

Famous Queen of Joseon Dynasty, Part VII: Queen Jeongsun of Yeosan Song Clan

Queen Jeongsun of Yeosan Song Clan (Hangul/Hanja: 정순왕후 여산송씨/定順王后 礪山宋氏; Born: 1440 - Died: 1521) is the only consort of the young King Danjong, 6th Monarch of Joseon Dynasty. She is a daughter of Song Hyun-soo (송현수/宋玹壽), Internal Prince Yeoryang (Yeoryang Buwon-gun/여량부원군/礪良府院君) and coming from Yeosan Song Clan which is originated at Yeosan-myeon, Iksan City, Northern Jeolla Province. Her posthumous name is Queen Uideok Dallyang Jegyeong Jeongsun (의덕단량제경정순왕후/懿德端良齊敬定順王后). Perhaps, she was one of the most tragic royal consorts in Joseon Period.

In 1453, she was selected to be Queen out of many candidates and actually became the Queen a year later. However, when King Danjong was forced to abdicate from the throne by his uncle, Grand Prince Suyang, who later became King Sejo, and was exiled to Yeongwol County in Gangwon Province, Queen Jeongsun was deprived of her title as well. 

After King Danjong immolated by King Sejo's minions, she built a thatched-roof house outside Seoul’s Dongdaemun Gate (East Main Gate) and lived there for the rest of her life continuing to mourn her husband.

She died in 1521 when she was 81 years old and buried at 180-1 Sareung Avenue/Sareungno, Sareung-ri san 65-1 beonji, Jingeon-eup, Namyangju City, Gyeonggi Province. The tomb’s name, Sareung (사릉/思陵) came from the fact that she had missed her dead husband so much.

Unlike other royal tombs, Sareung looks very simple. Its size is relatively small, and it does not have the “Byeongpungseok” stone border. There is only a “Muninseok” statue of a civil officer and “Seokma”, a statue carved in the shape of a horse.

However, Sareung is not open to public; it can only be visited for the purposes of scientific research, fieldwork, reports, education, and worship. In these cases reservations should be made in advance. Her tomb is accessible by using KORAIL-Gyeongchun Line to Station P126: Sareung Station (사릉역/思陵驛).