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Sunday, 9 February 2014

Hyeonchungsa Shrine, Asan, Southern Chungcheong: Another tribute to Admiral Yi Sunshin

Hyeonchungsa (Hanja: 顯忠祠) is a shrine for the Admiral Chungmugong Yi Sunshin, which is located in the edge of Mount Banghwa, Beagam-ri, Yeomchi-eup, Asan City, Southern Chungcheong Province, 4km away from Onyang Hot Springs and that's where he grew up till he passed the military service examination. One hundred and eight years after his demise for the country in the final naval battle of Noryang Point in 1598, this shrine was built in the period of King Sukjong of Joseon (1706) to pay a tribute to the memory of Admiral Yi Sunshin and King Sukjong, himself kindly named it as Hyeonchungsa in 1707. 

The heritage preservation society for Admiral Yi Sunshin was organized in 1932 during the Japanese imperial period and the shine was rebuilt. A celebration of Admiral Yi Sunshin's Birthday Memorial has been held on the 28th April every year for the memory of his accomplishment from the whole nation since 1945 Liberation Day. In 1966, this place has become a sanctuary in 1966 for admiring his entire faithful life, his goodness of saving the country and his loyalty. Hyeonchungsa was rebuilt and the overall construction of landscaping was carried out in 1974 so that the current site of scenes was furnished. 

This place was appointed as a historical remain number 155 and has been cared by the government. And also, his cemetery in Mount Eora, Eumbong-myeon was appointed as a historical remain number 112 and has been cared by the government. Admiral Yi Sunshin 's portrait is served in the main temple and Sipgyeongdo, a record of his entire life, Nanjung Ilgi (Admiral's Diary), national treasure number 76 and Janggeom (Long sword), treasure number 326 are displayed in the hall of relics. And his old house, archery field and Jeongryeo are in the precinct.

In the final scene of Heaven's Soldiers a.k.a Cheon-gun, Dr. Kim visits a local memorial to the still-venerated Admiral Yi in Asan, and the scene switches to the opening sequence of the Battle of Myeongnyang Strait, the legendary sea battle where Yi and only remaining 13 Panokseons from Chilcheollyang successfully destroyed an over 300-strong Japanese Atakebune-class battleships. Yi makes a rousing speech of encouragement to his men and then gives the order to charge into battle, with Park and Choi by his side as his staff officers.

When you enter the of Hyeonchungsa Shrine, Chungmu gate, you will see another gate called Hongsal Gate. Go past Hongsal Gate and you can see Yi Sunshin’s portrait, which was made with Korean Cheonggiwa tiles and iron-reinforced concrete. Inside the Gotaek Building is the Chungmujeong House, where Yi Sunshin spent his life until he was a young man. The newly added pond, Yeonji Pond, in Hyeonchungsa Shrine is also worth exploring.

Recommended by blogmaster: You will be surprised on how this admiral becomes from zero to hero.