A Study on the Perception of Korean Intellectuals on Botanical Gardens during the Open Port Period

식물원에 대한 개항기 한국 지식인의 인식 고찰

Kim, Jung-Hwa;Zoh, Kyung-Jin

  • Received : 2016.03.24
  • Accepted : 2016.04.19
  • Published : 2016.04.30


This study is an attempt to trace the origins of Korean botanical gardens prior to the construction of the botanical garden in Changgyeonggung Palace. We trace the time period during which Korean intellectuals first understood and appropriated botanical gardens based on accounts found in travel journals. These were written by members of delegations sent to Japan, Russia, and Great Britain and by students who had studied abroad, such as Tchi-Ho Yun and Kil-Chun Yu, during the open port period from 1876 to 1910. This study shows that the term "botanical garden" did not appear in any of the travel journals and the delegations did not show much interest in them until the 1880s. Japan had planned to introduce the different types of botanical gardens to the delegations from the Joseon Dynasty, but the delegations left no official records or related accounts regarding their visits. In contrast, members of delegations who were sent to Russia, Europe, and America after the 1890s began to pay attention to botanical gardens. They considered botanical gardens as a representative and essential part of Western culture and attempted to introduce them in Korea as essential tools for academic development as well as for enlightenment. Although many Korean intellectuals' opinions about the necessity of a botanical garden did not actually lead to its construction during the open port period, such a movement was significant in that it strengthened the botanical garden's image as a symbol of civilization. Apart from tracing the origins of the botanical gardens in Korea, this study serves as fundamental research material for understanding the establishment of the Changgyeongwon Botanical Garden in 1909.


Soosinsa;Haecheonchubeom;Sagusokcho;Yun Tchi Ho's Diary;Seoyugyeonmun


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Grant : BK21플러스

Supported by : 서울대학교