Goryeo Period temple is a sanctuary of rare design

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Goryeo Period temple is a sanctuary of rare design


Songgwang Temple in South Jeolla, one of the top three temples in Korea, has an extensive history and is considered an important cultural property.

The temple’s Guksajeon Hall is a Buddhist sanctuary that pays tribute to the 16 great monks who have enhanced national prestige throughout Korea’s history.

The sanctuary was used for Zen Buddhist meditation. It was built in 1369 during King Gongmin’s reign in the Goryeo Dynasty and has been repaired twice.

The main single-story building has a wedge-shaped roof and seven rooms. This building is supported by pillars designed in the jusimpo style, meaning that the inner shafts are thicker than at both ends of the building.

The middle of the structure has pot-shaped shafts in which the beams supporting the roof are placed above the main pillars.

The ‘I’ shaped ceilings with their lotus flower design and the main pillar with its dragon painting were rare in those days.

The temple was built in the same era as the Hasadang Hall of Songgwang Temple in Suncheon.

Name: Guksajeon Shrine of Songgwang Temple

Period: Joseon Dynasty (1392-1910)

Location: Suncheon, South Jeolla

Status: National Treasure No. 56

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