Korea's Greatest
Seowon
Historic Joseon-Dynasty
Neo-Confucian Academies with Shrines

sacred sites associated with famous mountains and rivers
Seowon are privately-run Neo-Confucian Academies with a Shrine for a Sage-teacher.  Toegye
originated these important institutions, building the
Sosu-seowon (the first one in Korea) to honor
An Hyang (who brought Neo-Confucianism to Korea in the early 1300s) in the early 1500s.  After
that
seowon were usually established by the Yangban aristocratic clans to honor a sage of their
clan, and maintained by the subsequent generations of disciples (teachers & students) who served
there.  They would regularly hold memorial-ceremonies for the principal enshrined sage, and other
masters of his and their lineage(s).  There were hundreds of seowon by the early 1800s, but then
most of them were suppressed / destroyed around 1870.  Some of the best have been rebuilt, or
survived and have been refurbished as tourist-sites and focuses of local pride.   They are national-
historic sacred sites of Neo-Confucian culture, associated with famous mountains and rivers.
Dosan-seowon of Andong Chengnyang-san
Location                                               Mountain / River                       Name

Andong City  near Bonghwa         Cheongryang-san                     Dosan Seowon
                                                      Nakdong-gang River

Yeongju City Punggi Town             
Sobaek-san                               Sosu Seowon
                                                      Jukgye-cheon Stream

Gyeongju City  Angang District     Dodeok-san                               
Oksan Seowon
                                                       Hyeongsan-gang River

Andong City  Hahoe Village           Hakka-san Hwasan-bong        
Byeongsan Seowon
                                                       Nakdong-gang River

Chilbo-san-myeon of Jeongeup County     Near Naejang-san              Museong Seowon
North Jeolla Province                                 Dongjin-gang River


Hamyang
County, Gyeongnam                                                              Namgye Seowon

Jangseong                                                                                             Pilam Seowon

Dalseong-gun of Daegu City                                                              
Dodong Seowon

Nonsan City of South Chungcheong Province
                              Donam Seowon


The Cultural Heritage Administration (CHA) is
proposing that these nine seowon
be registered as a group on the UNESCO World Heritage Site list in 2015.
The Nine Greatest Seowon remaining in Korea today:
(in rough order of significance; five are located in North Gyeongsang Province)
the Sosu Seowon of Yeongju Sobaek-san