첨성대 수치와 역할에 대한 연구

  • Kim, Kwang-Tae (Department of Astronomy and Space Science, College of Natural Sciences, Chungnam National University)
  • Received : 2013.08.15
  • Accepted : 2013.08.28
  • Published : 2013.09.30


Chumsungdae is an ancient astronomical observatory whose main role was doing 'chunmoon'. It was administrate by a royal advisory agency on state affairs. The observers observed the heaven on the observatory platform, recorded peculiar events, and watched and interpreted the signs displayed in the heaven. Chumsungdae is an stonemasonry which represents almanac principles with its peculiar shapes and the numbers of strata and stones. The numbers were thoroughly invented to match exactly the almanac constants. Chumsungdae is comprised largely of three main parts, namely the square base, the stratified cylindrical body, and the top #-shaped stonework, and the total number of stones is 404. The number of the strata (27) and the height of the cylindrical body (27 尺) stand for the days in a sidereal month (27.3 days), which implies that the motion of the Moon with respect to the stars was given more priority than to the Sun at that time of geocentricism. And the cylindrical body was thoroughly designed to consist of 365 stones, which is of course the number of days in a solar year. In addition, there are 12 strata each under and above the south entrance and this in sum makes the 24 divisions of the year. Also there is 182 stones below the 13th stratum and this represents the number of days in the winter ~ summer solstice period, and the rest 183 stones the vice versa. The #-shaped top stonework was aligned in such a way that one of the diagonals points the direction of sunrise on the winter solstice. The square base also layed with the same manner. The south entrance was built 16 degrees SE, and the upright direction of the right pillar stone coincides with the meridian circle. This was a kind of built-in standard meridian circle facilitating the observations. In a symbolic sense, Chumsungdae was thought as the tunnel reaching the heaven, where the observers wished to be enlightened with the signs and inspirations in need. With the craftsmanship and skill, the builder reinforced the stratified cylindrical body with two sets of #-shaped beam stones, piercing at a right angle at 19th ~ 20th and 25th ~ 26th strata. Likewise, by placing the double #-shaped stonework with 8 beam stones on the platform of the observatory, both the stability of the stonemasonry and a guard rail for the nightly observers were securely provided.


  1. 국립문화재연구소, 2009, 경주첨성대 실측 훼손도 조사 보고서,
  2. 김기협, 1981, 첨성대(瞻星臺)의 천변관측(天變觀測) 기능, 한국과학사학회지 3, 143
  3. 김기홍, 2000, 천년의 왕국 신라, 창작과 비평사, pp.250-262
  4. 김용운, 1974a, Structure of Ch'omsongdae in the Light of the Choupei Suanchin, Korea Journal, 14, 4
  5. 김용운, 1974b, 瞻星臺小考, 歷史學報, 64, 95
  6. 나일성, 2000, 한국천문학사, 서울대출판부
  7. 남천우, 1974, 첨성대에 관한 제설의 검토-김용운, 이용범 양씨설을 중심으로, 歷史學報, 64, 115
  8. 박성래, 1980, 瞻星臺에 대하여, 韓國科學史學會志, 2, 136
  9. 박흥수, 1979, 첨성대의(瞻星臺) 천문측량, 한국과학사학회지, 1, 78
  10. 송민구, 1981, 瞻星臺 實測 및 復元圖에 依한 比例分析, 韓國科學史學會志, 3, 52
  11. 신영훈, 1981, 瞻星臺小考, 韓國科學史學會志, 3, 150
  12. 유경로, 1999, 한국천문학사 연구, 한국천문학사편찬위원회, 녹두출판사
  13. 유복모, 강인준, 양인태, 1981, 경주 첨성대의(瞻星臺) 위치해석에 대한 고찰, 한국과학사학회지, 3, 80
  14. 이문규, 2004, 첨성대를 어떻게 볼 것인가-첨성대의 해석의 역사와 신라시대의 천문관, 韓國科學史學會志, 26, 3
  15. 이은성, 1981, 瞻星臺에 대한 소감, 韓國科學史學會志, 3, 148
  16. 전상운, 1964, 삼국 및 통일신라시대의 천문의기, 고문화, 3, 21
  17. 전상운, 1998, 한국과학사의 새로운 이해, 연세대학교 출판부, pp.243-262
  18. 조세환, 1998, 瞻星臺의 조경인식론적 해석, 韓國造景學會志, 26, 178
  19. 홍사준, 1967, 첨성대, 연제고고논집, pp.103-137
  20. 홍이섭, 1949, 朝鮮科學史, 정음사
  21. 關野 貞, 1941, 조선의 건축과 예술, 동경
  22. 和田雄治, 1917, 경주 첨성대 일설, 朝鮮古代觀測記錄調査報告(조선총독부관측소), pp.144-151
  23. Needham, J., 1959, Science and Civilization in China, Vol 3, Cambridge University Press, pp.297-298
  24. Rufus, W. C., 1917a, The Korea Megagine I, 496
  25. Rufus, W. C., 1917b, Popular Astronomy, 24, 490
  26. Rufus, W. C., 1936, Korean Astronomy, Chosen Christian College, pp.13-14