The Korea Review 1906


Index for 1906.


A Chequered career  386            

A Foolish Tale   180

A Korean Cyclopaedia  217, 244            

A Visit to Seoul in 1975 John Mikson 131

Ainu and Korean            223

American Enterprise J. Hunter Wells 23, 83  

American Hospital in Pyeng-yang J. H. Wells 251

Appeal, The Emperor's   192

At Kija's Grave (poem) Stirling  81


Bible Committee's Report 1905 67, 101

Bible Women 140

Bible Translation 165

Biographical Notes on Ancient Korea E B. Landis               412, 441

Brass ware 188

Brown, J. McLeavy        115


Census of Japanese in Korea 196

Chequered Career, A  386

Chun do-kyo 418

Cinderella: A Korean L. H. Underwood 10

Conundrums, Korean  Chas F. Bernheisel 59

Correspondence  188,  254

Council, The General, Holofernes             99

Criticisms by The Japan Mail 312

Cyclopaedia, A Korean 217, 244


Dagelet Island    281

Douglas Story on Korea  389


Editorial Comment          35, 73, 110, 152, 190, 228, 266, 303, 346, 389 428, 463   .

Education                       74

Emigration Laws             256

Emperor's Appeal, The   192

Enterprise in Korea, American  J. H. Wells           23, 83

Etiquette, Filial  C. T. Collyer 292

Eui-wha. Prince  333

Export Duties 259


Fillial Etiquette, C. T.Collyer 292

Finances, Korean            112, 325

Folk-lore, New Year F. M. Brockman 47

Foolish Tale, A, Ko Hiung-ik 180

Friends of Korea.            256


Gambling in Korea         415

General Council, The, Holofernes  99

Gleaning by the Wayside W. E. Smith  161

Government Loan 112, 152


Hawaii, Koreans in  401

Hayashi, G.  36

Hospital in Pyeng-Yangg J. H. Wells  251

Hospital, Severance. O. R. Avison             62

Hulbert 's Mission to America  35

Hymn, National M. C. Fenwick  320


Immigration, Japanese  341

Increase of Population J. R. Moose 41, 121

Internal Affairs, Korean  300

Ito, Marquis, in Korea  37


Japanese administration of Korea 300

Japanese in Korea           229

''     census in Korea 196

''    in Korean Finance 325  

''      Immigration 341

"      Morphine vendors 248

"      in the North 290

''      in N. E. Korea 338

''      Problem in Korea 190

''     Seizure of land 255

"     tamper with Customs 259

''      Torture of Koreans 239, 269, 303

Japan Mail’s attitude  346

''        ''  Criticisms  212

Kennan on Korea  74, 197, 201

Kija's Grave, At (poem) Stirling 81

King's Property, The  Yi Chong-wun  94

Korean Cinderella, A  L. H. Underwood. 10

Korean and Ainu  223

''     Conundrums Chas F. Bernheisel 59

''      Cyclopaedia, A  117, 244

''     Emigration Laws 256

''      Finances            325

''      Internal Affairs 300

''      Mining Laws      241

''      Sketches (poems)            201

''      Writing               285

''      Prefecture, The 378

Koreans in America        376

Korea’s Friends               266


Land Case, The Pyeng-yang 261

Land Seizure in Wonsan  255

Loan, Government  112, 152

Marquis Ito In Korea      37

Marquis Ito in Palace      110

Min Yongg-whan             1, 406

Mining Laws, Korean     241

Missionary Work in Korea 113, 361

Missionary Journey W. E Smith 161

Mudang practices  188


National Hymn M. C. Fenwick    320

News Calendar 38, 77, 116, 158, 195, 235, 272, 313, 352, 393, 435, 475

New Year Folk lore  F. M. Brockman       47

North East Korea, Japanese in   338

Obituary, Rev. R. A. Sharp 148

Obituary, L. Pelly, Esq. 151

Opium in Korea 248


Palace, Marquis Ito in 110

Pelly L., Obituary of 151

Plagiarist, The Gentle 258

Poems 1, 81, 201

Population of Korea J. R. Moose  41, 121

Prefecture, The Korean 378

Prince Eui-wha  333

Prophets of Seoul. The 294

Pyeng-yang, Land case  261

Pyeng-yang, What to see  321


Religion of the Heavenly Way 418

Report of Bible Committee 1905              67, 101

Retribution, Swift           383

Review, Shintoism H. G. Underwood  87

Rights in Korea, Women  C. F. Berheisel  51


Seasons, The (poem) John Mikson  1

Seoul in 1975 John Mikseon  131

Seoul Press, The New  430

Severance Hospital O. R. Avison 62

Sharp, Obituary of Robt. A  148

Shintoism (a review) H. G. Underwood 87

Skeleton in the closet, The 452

Sketches, Korean (poem) 201

Sorai Beach, a Trip to J. W. Hirst 27

Story, Douglas, on Korea 389

Swift Retribution 383


Tax Collection in Korea 366

The Gentle Plagiarist 258

The Japanese in the North 290

The King’s Property 94

The Koreans in Hawaii 401

The Korean Prefecture 378

The New Seoul Press  430

The Prophets of Seoul 294

The Pyeng-yang Land case  261

The Religion of the Heavenly Way 418

The Seasons (poem) John Mikson  1

The Skeleton in the Closet  452

The Three wise Sayings L. H. U. 124

The Tiger and the Babies L. H. U. 182

Tiger and the Babies, The             L. H. U.  182

Timber Concession, The 397

Times, The 345

Torture of Koreans 239, 269, 303

Translatiou of Bible W. D. Reynolds 16

Trip to Sorai Beach  J. W. Hirst  27


Ul-leung-do 281

Visit to Seoul in 1975 John Mikson 131

What to see in Pyeng-yang 321

Wise Sayings, The Three L. H. U. 124

Women’s Rights in Korea  Chas F. Bernheisel 51

Writing, Korean 285


Vol 6 (1906)


No. 1 (January)

The Seasons   1

Min Yong-Whan  1

A Korean Cinderella   10

American Enterprise in Korea       23

A Trip to Sorai Beach   27

Editorial Comment   35

News Calendar   38




JANUARY. 1906.


[page 1]


The Seasons.




The rivulets of spring o’erflow with sudden showers,

In the distant summer cloud a magic mountain towers,

Above the autumn night the frosty moon shines clear,

Lone on a wintry hill a pine-tree standeth drear .

                                                                  “John Mikson”


Min Yong Whan.


Following almost immediately on the extinction of the nation. with whose political existence and welfare he was during his whole life most closely identified, departed one of Korea’s noblest men.

Min Yong Whan was the son of Min Kium Ho, who was a former member of the Cabinet, as Minister of Finance; and a member of the Min family to which Her Imperial Majesty, the late Empress belonged.

In accordance with a very common custom in the East, he was adopted by his uncle Min Tai Ho, who had no son, so that be might possess an heir to carry on the ancestral ceremonies of the ancient family. This uncle in observance of another Korean custom, received posthumous rank, that of Minister of Home Affairs. Although [2] belonging to the powerful family of the late Empress, General Min was more closely related to the Emperor, his first cousin in fact: his maternal aunt being the Emperor’s mother, wife of the late Tai Won Koon: so that Min Yong Whan was of Princely blood of first rank on both sides.

His lady mother combines dignity and simplicity, in her appearance and manners; bearing all the marks of the old nobility and displaying, in the harrowing experiences of the past months, the qualifies of a Spartan heroine. When a few days after the tragic death of General Min, the writer called to condole with the ladies of his family, Lady Min said that, it was well that her son had died since it was for the sake of his country, and that though her heart ached, her mind was at peace with regard to him. A few weeks later she repeated and emphasized this statement. When reminded of the beautiful children he had left to take up his name and work, she sent for the little ones for my sake; but all her pleasure, all her glory, as well as her sorrow, was in him who had loved his country too well, to live to see her shame. The younger ladies, General Min’s widow, and his brother’s wife, remained standing in her presence, and were both as tenderly and quickly responsive to sympathy, as are all of this singularly warm hearted, sensitive and gentle people.

General Min was born in 1861 at Yong In, in the Province of Kyung Ki, 140 li, or 46 miles, from Seoul. Min Yong Chan, Korea’s Minister to Paris, is General Min’s only brother. His only sister became the wife of Kim Yong Chuck.

Like all Koreans of good family, he studied the Korean and Chinese classics under a tutor, with few holidays, and close application, many hours each day. This continued until he had reached the age of seventeen, when at the Kwaka or national examinations, he received the highest diploma. The same year he became Seung Jee or Imperial secretary, and at twenty-five was made Commander of the Royal Guards. He speedily rose in rank and office and at the age of twenty-eight became a [3] member of the Cabinet, as Minister of War. From 1886 to 1891 he held the highest power in the state, occupying that position of overwhelming influence with the rulers and officials, which is known in Korea by the term “Saydo.” This while really not an office is a somewhat unique position, the holder of which is often called court favorite, and practically wields supreme power.

In 1890, when General Min had just reached the age of thirty, his father died, and according to Korean custom he went into mourning for three years, and resigned all official and social duties. It was thought by many that he had served so well and possessed such favor, that His Majesty would exercise his prerogative and issue an Imperial edict by which on certain occasions of state necessity he should lay aside his mourning and appear at the Palace in the continued exercise of his functions. Owing to court intrigues, however, this did not occur, and Min Yong Jun succeeded to the position where he served so satisfactorily that on Min Yong Whan’s return to political life at the end of the usual three years of mourning, he was not reinstated to his old power, but was simply given the portfolio of the Home Office. During this year however, due to Japanese interference, the existing government was overthrown, and Min Yong Whan, with all other Royalists and patriots, retired from office. and went to the country. After the defeat of the pro-Japanese party, and at the beginning of the Russian ascendency, he returned,—in the fall of 1894,—and became a member of a newly organized and somewhat peculiar Military Council, which had supervision of both state and military affairs.

He became Minister of War in 1896, and was sent as special Ambassador to Russia, to the Czar’s Coronation, when he was presented with the highest kind of decoration given on that occasion. In 1897 he was sent on a similar embassy to Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee, and was again decorated with the highest class of order.

When the term of service as Ambassador to England had expired, he was ordered to return to Russia and negotiate a treaty which would practically have handed Korea [4] over to that power. He flatly refused to do this, and in consequence was deprived of his office and fell into great disfavor: He therefore went from England to America., where he remained about a year, spending his time in the study of English and the civilization and conditions in general, of western nations.

In 1898 he returned to Korea with broadened vision and large plans and hopes for the advancement of his country, with full determination to devote himself more than ever to her welfare. Almost immediately after his return he founded the Hung Wha School which is fast becoming one of the best private high schools, retaining the Presidency of this until his death. He was always ready to give either time or money, to any object which promised the good of the country and the people. He raised the money to found a strong independent newspaper devoted to education and progress, but after all was ready, and he was just on the point of putting his plans into action, an Imperial interdict was issued, and his hopes and efforts in this direction were blighted. General Min was always of the progressive spirit, and was one of the firmest supporters of the Independence Club which took so active and stirring a part in Korean politics after the China-Japan War, and during the period of Russian supremacy. From 1897 till the time of his death, General Min held at various intervals different offices, as Minister in one or other of the state departments, at one time also Generalissimo, at another Paymaster General, and in 1899 Vice Premier. The office is practically the same as Prime Minister in other lands, for in Korea the Prime Minister is appointed for and exercises his office only on special occasions. He held also the office of Grand Master of Ceremonies, and during the same year received the first rank and highest order of Tai Keuk and also the title of Po Gook which is the highest rank and grade in office.

It might be as well right here, to note with regard to Korean rank and titles, that they never descend from father to son, or belong to any family as such. While pride of birth and clan are as great, and carry as many [5] obligations as anywhere in Europe, socially, yet no one is born a prince, earl, duke, etc., (unless the child of the reigning sovereign), but such titles are conferred, either as a favor from the Emperor, or accompanying the office with which the individual is invested—like its insignia—and pass away with it. So while Min. Yong Whan was a prince of the highest rank, he only possessed such titles as were conferred upon him from time to time, and could not pass them down to his sons.

In the spring of 1905, he again took up the now exceedingly difficult and problematical duties of Korea’s Prime Minister, but while holding this position, two propositions came from the Japanese, both of which he most determinedly and persistently refused to sign. One of these was the bill conferring on the Japanese, Internal Navigation Rights, giving that nation all rights in Korean waters. The other provided that all Korean foreign Ministers be withdrawn from foreign countries and that Korea’s future diplomatic relations abroad be conducted by the foreign Ministers of Japan. His attitude in opposition to these measures made it necessary for him to resign his post, and although appointed Minister of the Foreign Office in the fall, he declined; not that anything was too difficult or unpalatable for him to do for Korea, but because official position had now become practically an empty name, which no Korean patriot could occupy with honor to himself or credit to his country.

At the time of his death he held only the office of General Aid de Camps to His Majesty.

When the treaty of subjugation was forced upon Korea in the fall of 1905, he undertook the practically hopeless task of trying to bring about some strong action on the part of the leaders of the Government, which should render it void. But everything was against him, the pitiful weakness, and short sighted self-interest, in those on whom he and other patriots should have been able to depend, rendering every effort futile. Forty times in succession, he sent in memorial after memorial to the Throne, but to no avail: he could not even obtain an [6] audience, and was ordered to leave the Palace. It must of course be remembered, that at this time it was exceedingly difficult to know what communications sent to the palace really reached the one for whom they were intended or what messages and orders purporting to come from the sovereign were genuine, as all avenues were guarded, and those who were interested to do so, controlled all these matters.

Min Yong Whan therefore refused to obey, but persisted in his efforts and entreaties, until the Imperial order was issued for his arrest, in common with all the other nobility and former Cabinet officers, the noblest and most honored in the land, who had gathered there with him, for the same purpose, and to protest against what had been done.

The plea made in the rejected memorials was, that His Majesty should order the five traitors who signed the forced treaty to be beheaded and that His Majesty should continue to refuse to ratify the same.

Finding his efforts useless, and seeing no way to prevent the disaster, after his release from prison, he decided to end his life. All was calmly planned and prepared for, his mother was sent for to take charge of his household, his young wife and little children, and letters were written to the Ministers of Foreign Powers, and to influential friends in America.                          

The following is a copy of one of these, and throws a pathetic light on his attitude at this sad time:

             “To............... .

“I, Min Yong Whan have been unable to do my duty as a true subject of my country, and not having served her well, she and her people are brought to this present hopeless condition. Foreseeing the coming death of my country, I am now offering my humble farewell to His Majesty, my Emperor, and to the twenty millions of my fellow countrymen, in an excess of despair and utter hopelessness. I I know that my death will accomplish nothing and that my people will all be lost in the coming life and death struggle, but seeing that I can do nothing to prevent this by living, I have taken my decision.

             [7] “You must know the aim and actions of the Japanese at the present day, I therefore beseech you to use your good offices, in making known to the world whatever injustice my people may suffer, and may you use your magnanimous efforts in trying to uphold our independence. If you can do this for my land, even my dying soul can rest happily. Do not misunderstand the good intentions of my people. I trust you will not forget our first treaty (with America) made between your republic and my country. May there be practical proof of your sympathy from your Government and your people; then even the dead shall know, and be thankful to you.

             “Yours in despair,           .

( Signed and Sealed), Min Yong Whan.”

Thus passed away one of Korea’s best officials, one of the golden order of true nobility,—and there are such—who loved his country and his duty as he knew it, better than himself, better than gain or rank or fame. He was too true a patriot to be always in favor, or to escape loss and punishment at times. Repeatedly when the trial came and the choice lay between his own personal interest and his nation’s welfare, he invariably and inflexibly stood for the latter, irrespective of the consequences to himself. With no light or hopeful belief in a holy overruling Power, with nothing but his inborn probity and uprightness on which to lean, trained in the midst of a class of timeserving, money loving, conscienceless officials, with everything to tempt towards self-indulgence and practically nothing to restrain, he yet in a marvellous way ever held to the right.

To serve the people, to live for his country’s good, was his first aim, everything was sacrificed to this.

I seem to see written in bold characters between the lines of his last letter, and confirmed by other evidence, that even in his death, while declaring its uselessness, he yet hoped faintly, that through it sympathy would be awakened, attention would be aroused, efforts might be called forth on the part of influential persons in high office, which might yet save his beloved country.

At the time of his death, he had much to live for. [8] Immense wealth, high position (which might have been almost anything, and for his life time had he been willing to sacrifice his country and his honor), a great following of friends and admirers both in Korea and abroad, and among all classes, a young wife, three sons and two daughters, and an old mother whose pride he was.

Yet the things which move most men, seemed to exercise no power over his actions. A high and noble patriotism, mistaken, sadly, pathetically mistaken in its last instance, overpowered every other motive. He was a man who lived with a lofty purpose before him, and never swerved from its pursuit; even unto death. He counted not his life dear unto him.

Of late it has been the fashion—and with a plain purpose—to belie and underrate Korea and Koreans. They have been called a degenerate race, they are sneered at and caricatured—and by some who might be in better business—, but I venture to assert, after nearly twenty years of patient study of their character, that Min Yong Whan, in his magnificent unselfishness, in his faithful devotion, in his love of his country, was only a representative of thousands of his countrymen, and only one of the vanguard of the great mass of those, whom Christianity and civilization will develop.

Shut in for thousands of years, too suddenly brought into the full blaze of twentieth century life and methods. without the education. and experience which years of intercourse with other countries would have given, Korea may not in some respects bear a contrast with all the showy attainments of her conquerors; but those who have learned to love and respect the kindly, whole hearted generosity of her people, the sturdy character of her farmers and fisher folk, the faithful friendship, the long suffering forbearance, the endurance, the perseverance, the uncomplaining patience, and the scholarly and philosophical qualities, which are continually manifested, will be slow to listen to the slanderous reports of her enemies. or to believe the magazine articles of foreigners who have spent a month or two at the most in her confines.

             [9] Min Yong Whan’s first wife died some years ago, and his children are those of a second marriage with a high class young lady. For years he has abandoned the common eastern custom of keeping secondary wives, and has conducted his household on the most approved principles of civilized peoples.

While unable to profess a personal faith in Christ, he publicly stated in the presence of several members of the Cabinet. that in Christianity lay Korea’s only hope, and that only through the principles of Christianity had other nations grown strong. Scarcely a month before his death, and at the table of the writer, he expressed a strong desire for a school for Korean peeresses, under the care of missionaries, and stated that “if such a one were established, his own wife should attend. and that he and other Koreans would gladly help to found such a school, could the foreign missionaries lend their aid and provide a suitable principal and teachers. In. fact, plans for such a school were .in process of formation at the time of his death. The exciting events attending the visit of Marquis Ito, of course delayed all further action at that time. He was also one of the strongest supporters, and most generous subscribers, to the Korean Young Men’s Christian Association.

After his death, the highest rank was conferred, namely that of Tai Kwang Po Gook; the office of Prime Minister, and the highest order of decoration, the “Golden Rule or Measure,” Keum Chuck, only one of which has, ever been given, namely to the Emperor of Japan last year.

His funeral was ordered to take place with the ceremonies and honors due to a member of the Imperial household, his casket was carried to the grave by friends instead of hired coolies, and he was followed by an immense procession, consisting of members of guilds, schools, political societies and a host of friends, while the walls and streets through which the funeral passed were packed by a dense mass of silent mourning citizens. For days after his death the shops were closed, and signs of mourning exhibited throughout the city.

[10] So a true man has passed away, one who lived up to his best light, and set his heel on the flesh, for the best and the purest Cause he knew. How many readers of this article can rank themselves with him, or how many can afford to despise his last act of self-denial?

L. H. U.



A Korean Cinderella (* All rights reserved by writer)


Once upon a time a certain widower, with only one child, took for his second wife a widow who also had a daughter, about the same age as his own little girl. One didn’t need even a straw after this new mistress came into the family to see which way the wind blew, or that my lady would rule things with a high hand. The poor man dared .not say his soul was his own and kept out of the anpang as much as possible, when in the house at all, and made as many excuses as he could to be away altogether, which suited his wife to a T.

But these were hard times for poor little Kong Choo the man’s daughter, who was ordered about from pillar to post, and when she did her best got nothing but sour looks, and when in fault or through some misfortune things went wrong, received hard blows and ill words more than one cares to think about.

Only one person ever got a smile and that was the woman’s cross-grained daughter Pat Choo or Donkey Bean. You may be surprised that her doting mother gave her such an ugly name, but as Koreans are much fonder of Beans than Peas, I suppose she thought it a very choice one, while for my part I think it was quite too good for her. Poor Kong Choo’s garments were too small, patched, old and faded, but nothing could spoil her modest sweet looks, which an old-fashioned book says are a woman’s best ornaments, while all the fine new clothes in which Pat Choo was dressed, with so much care and [11] labor, never could make her look even passable, or hide the sly cruel expression that disfigured her face.

Thus things went on in the ordinary way for some time in this family, but bye and bye many surprising events happened, and this is how they began.

One day the step mother sent both the girls out to weed, as is the custom in the country, but Kong Choo. was assigned a very hard and stony piece of ground. and was given an old wooden homie; while Pat Choo was sent to a well ploughed field with no stones and given a good strong iron homie, so of course though she didn’t work very hard, she was soon through and went home to her mother as proud as a peacock, while poor little Sweet Pea struggled over the big stones and the hard ground, till her pretty little hands were all blistered, then a dreadful thing happened, for in tugging at an especially obstinate stone the wooden homie broke, and that was a disaster, it meant a terrible beating, and no end of abuse and scolding. Poor Kong Choo dared not face her taskmistress either with the broken homie or without it. What to do she did not know, or where to go.

Not a friend or protector had she as far as she knew in the whole wide world, so the forlorn little thing just buried her head in her old apron, and cried and cried.

It sounded most pitiful, all the dumb things were as sorry as they could be, and soon a great black cow came out of the woods on the mountain behind her father’s house, and asked her what was the matter.

It was very strange, still she didn’t seem at all surprised or frightened at being spoken to in this unusual way by a cow, but instead, it seemed perfectly natural and proper, and she felt at once on quite a familiar footing with the animal just as though she had known and talked to her always.

So having nobody else to sympathize with her, she told Mrs. Cow all her troubles. As for her she stood listening, breathing softly and musically a breath full of the fragrance of cowslips and meadow grass, her great soft eyes resting on Peas Blossom in a loving tenderness that alone was sweet consolation, “Don’t cry,’’ said she in a [12] calm even voice, and. then she told the girl of two wells, just on the edge of the forest. “Go, child,” said she, “and wash your face and hands in the first well, and your feet in the second, and then come to me, hold out your apron, and I will give you some goodies!” So Kong Choo who was an obedient girl, did just as she was told, washed her face in the first well, her feet in the second, and then with her apron outspread went into the wood a little way. There was the cow who at once filled it with chestnuts and dates. Now those were fairy wells, and when she washed her face and hands the water which even when only common every day water always makes pretty girls prettier, made Kong Choo a thousand times prettier, and when she had washed her feet, she came under the fairies’ protection, and when she spread out her apron, lo, it and all her garments were nice new ones. Her skirt was a beautiful cherry red newly dyed and pounded into glistening smoothness and softness, and her dainty little ‘jacket was of pale yellow silk. She now felt quite happy and comforted, as any good child does who is clean, tidy, well-clothed, with plenty of good things to eat, and best of all a kind protecting friend close at hand.

But the cow went back to the recesses of the mountains, and bye and bye it began to grow dark, and poor Kong Choo was afraid, so she went to the house and begged to be let in, but as Pat Choo had told about the broken homie, and her field was not done, although she knocked and called a long time, no one answered and the gate was barred.

The dog, who was only treated a little better than she, and who knew he was soon to be killed and eaten, pitied. her, and came out from his little door under the gate, and licked her hand. But her fears grew with the darkness. The trees seemed great ogres waving their arms at her. In fancy she saw terrible forms stealing toward her in the shadows, the moaning wind made her shudder with its threatenings of mysterious disaster, and in the distance she thought she caught a glimpse of a glaring tiger’s eyes. She surely heard something panting quite near and felt a hot breath on her cheek.

[13] Her poor little heart almost stood still, her flesh crept and something cold as ice slid down her spinal chord. Then she suddenly cried out in anguish, “O Mother, oh kind Pat Choo let me in, let me in and I will give you many chestnuts and dates.” “Chestnuts and dates indeed,” said Pat Choo from behind the gate, “where are you to get them I should like to know? However I will open the gate on a crack and yon can put some in my hand if you really have them.” So the gate was opened just the stingiest little crack and Peas Blossom gave her sister a handful. They were indeed surprised. Many were the whisperings and then they planned a low trick to get the goodies all away. They kept promising to let her in for a few more and a few more, and when all were gone, they laughed cruelly, and left the poor frightened thing out there in the great world, that was after all much kinder and safer, than that house containing wicked hearts of enemies.

But she had been told so many stories of tokgabies, kweeshins and tigers, she was very much afraid of the dark. instead of loving it, for the blessing it is to poor tired overburdened care laden humanity, and after all, evil things do hide in it. When her father came back quite late, they let him in, but shut the gate so quickly, that poor Peas Blossom who had hoped to slip in behind him was left out. As for him, he had been drinking so much sul—a habit he had acquired since his marriage, he never saw her at all. Of course he wasn’t a proper father, I would like to shake him for my part, and I hope his cross wife gave him a longer curtain lecture than usual.

Peas Blossom was so scared, she threw her apron over her head, so she couldn’t see or hear, and crouched down trembling in a little angle of the wall, without daring to stir or scarcely to breathe, waiting in quivering gasping expectation of some awful unspeakable horror about to befall her. Soon she heard a little movement, and there the kind great black cow came again. Lying down, she made Kong Choo cuddle up close to her warm heart, where the poor child slept quietly; soothed by the rhythmic breathing of her friend.

[14] In the morning, when the hard hearted step-mother came out there she was quite fresh and rosy. Things now went on much as usual again, for some time, but at length a great feast was to be given in a township some miles away, to which this whole family was invited, and Kong Choo had to work very hard, helping to iron and sew new clothes for Pat Choo and her mother to wear. Oddly enough they iron the garments first and sew them afterwards. Sweet Pea begged to go too, but they laughed at the idea, so she was left to take care of the house. Her step-mother, however, jeeringly promised her, that if she would fill with water a great jar in the yard, which had a hole in the bottom, and would husk and clean five measures of rice, she might follow them to the feast, well knowing that the task set was less impossible, than for a timid young girl to go alone so far.

Seeing how hopeless it was, she sat down and cried just softly, crystal drops trickled down between her rosy fingers, and great sobs shook her slender frame. Then, can you believe it, in came a beautiful great green toad, as cool as you please, as though he’d lived there always, and hopping up to her, looked so lugubrious and dismal, Kong-Choo had hard work not to laugh. “Dear Kong Choo, what is the matter?” croaked he. So the poor lonely thing told him, with more tears, for they always come when one is sorry for you, though that kind are soothing, and bring relief. “O-ho,’’ said the toad, “if that is all don’t cry my Dearie, I will stand under the tok and press my broad back up into the hole, so that not one drop shall leak out.” So now Peas Blossom trotted back and forth to the spring many times with a jar of water on her head, some of which, of course, splashed over and helped wash away her tears, for she was in such a hurry, she brought too much at a time, and walked less steadily than usual. But the great tok was soon filled.

So far so good, but alas the rice was a very different. business, no matter how faithfully she worked. However down she sat and began, kernel by kernel, fresh tears falling as she toiled, when in came the great black [15] cow and asked, “What is the matter my child, why do you cry?” So she told all she had to do and how much she longed to go to the party. “Don’t, cry, my child,” said the cow, and then going to the door she called gently, when suddenly in came a great flock of birds, sparrows, wrens, larks, bobolinks, orioles, kingfishers, magpies and robins, with such a chattering and whirring of wings as you never heard. They began cleaning the rice with their neat little bills, and before you knew it there it was all done in a jiffy! But though she thanked the birds very pretti1y, she suddenly remembered she had no clothes fit to wear and so after all it was no use.

How could she help crying again, and how could the cow help coming to her to see what was the matter? Now as a rule, we don’t expect cows to help much in matters of dress, they could never be so placid and calm as they are, if they did, but this one, having proved herself truly extraordinary, Sweet Pea ventured to tell her that she couldn’t go to the party in old clothes and that was why she wept. “Don’t cry then, but run to the inner room, and look in the great brass bound chest which stands there against the wall,” said the good creature. So away ran the girl in a hurry and there she found the prettiest and daintiest outfit all made of Korean silk as soft and fine and sheer as a delicate cambric handkerchief, dyed in the brightest and softest hues that even a Sweet Pea could wish to wear.

But alas! After she had put them all on, she found that there were no shoes, and how could she go without them? This was worse than ever, so in spite of her glossy new skirts down she sank and cried as before .

I’m more than half inclined to suspect she peeped between her fingers this time to see what would happen. Evidently the cow had no proper ideas of discipline, for we all know it spoils people to give them the things they want whenever they cry for them, especially children and young folks, but be that as it may in she came again in a great hurry, saying “Why do you cry Kong Choo?” “Alas Adjimonie though you have graciously [16] given me these beautiful clothes, I am much ashamed, and blush to own l weep for I have no shoes.” “Foolish child, look on the maru where they should be,” was the answer. So sure enough Kong Choo found a most beautiful pair of little new shoes made of white and pink kid, sewed with gold thread, waiting for her shapely little feet. She slipped them on standing, with a little shake of each foot as Korean girls do, and with a low gleeful laugh, was just about to start forth, when she remembered the long lonely road, and that besides her fears, it would be considered shocking for a young girl to go alone along the public road. There was no end of difficulties it seemed, and it was certain her friend and helper would not come again, after what she had already done. And so Kong Choo who was in a fair way to develope into a perfect little Niobe melted into grief again. Well of course the cow came running to find out what was the matter, and on hearing told her to go look in the quang and there to her amazement was a pokyo of the finest kind, but even while she examined it with great delight she remembered she had no coolies. Alas, like all the rest of us, her faith was small. It didn’t occur to her, that the kind power which had so often befriended her, was just as ready to do more. So instead of looking for the coolies where she would surely have found them, had she trusted perfectly, she simply and weakly began to weep again.

I feel quite out of patience with her by this time, don’t you ? I don’t care if she was pretty and lonely and badly treated, she cried far too much and I should have been inclined had I been that old cow to scold her well. But dear old Bossy possessed the real milk of human or superhuman kindness, and so she came again, and told the girl if she would peep outside the gate, she would find the coolies waiting; and there they were sure enough where they bad been ever since the rice was cleaned, patiently smoking their pipes; for coolies never object to waiting any length of time, when they are well paid and have plenty of tobacco.

So off she went at last, smiles gleaming through her [17] tears, looking quite like an April Pea-Blossom, and no doubt the prettiest little creature in all the eight provinces.

Of course she had a delightful time, though the story, aggravatingly enough, forgets to say anything about it, but hurries on to what followed.

Now you must know, that somehow on the return, one of the shoes was lost, out of the chair, but was not missed till she reached home, and then no matter how much she searched and cried it couldn’t be found, nor did the old cow come to the rescue, so all she had was the odd shoe—the pokyo and the rest having disappeared as mysteriously as they came—which she kept and treasured, and when alone, as she often was, she would hold it in her hand, and think over all the wonderful events of that night. Indeed if it had not been for the shoe, I dare say. she would have come to believe it was all a mere dream.

Now the very next morning after the feast, it happened that the Governor of the province came riding along that self same road, which Sweet Pea had travelled, and chancing to glance out of his chair, saw the exquisite little shoe lying in the road. It was so extraordinarily pretty, no one could help noticing it. The coolies set down the chair at once, and it was respectfully handed to the Governor by his keup changie, and wondered over by them all. It was quite new, so very small and richly ornamented, and of truly beautiful workmanship. The Governor wondered more and more to whom it could belong, and became possessed of an unconquerable desire to behold the owner. In fact he gave orders that the whole province should be searched and the owner of the shoe brought to him. You see he was young and romantic, youth being the same all over the. world, and he became quite infatuated with the dear little shoe, and its imagined owner. It goes without saying, that that owner was hard to find. They searched far and they searched wide, but at length began to grow warmer and warmer, fairly hot in fact, but for all that they nearly missed her after all. She was out in the stony field far [18] at the back of the house at work with the old broken wooden homi, crying as likely as not, no good cow to comfort her, and probably feeling life was very hard, with no one in all the world, but poor old Werlie the dog to care for her. The story doesn’t say so, but you can’t help thinking that would he the way most. of us would feel. We would be sure to go forgetting past blessings, and be all ready to despond, and doubt as soon as the sun was overcast and a few dark days came. The Governor’s agents asked the stepsister to try on the shoe, and she tried so hard it would surely have been ruined had it been a common one. She did manage to crowd her fat toes into it, and then vowed it fitted, but everybody laughed who saw her great heel away out at the back. “Isn’t there another young maid in this house?” said the officer. “No, no other,” said the wicked stepmother. “No, none,’’ said the envious sister. But as fate would have it, who should come in just then, but sweet Kong Choo, with a soft color in her oval cheeks, dimples there too, and in her pretty little saucy chin, and in her round elbows and wrists, and a dewy lustre in her beautiful eyes, that tears which are not very bitter or very salt always make. Of course she was at once requested to try on the shoe, which of course fitted perfectly, and of course she straightway produced the other, and likewise of course was carried off with all proper formalities and festivities as the Governor’s wife.

But that is not the end. The strangest is yet to come. The Governor loved this little wife more and more and they lived in bliss for a year and a day, and I know not how many hours, minutes and seconds, when into Kong Choo’s foolish little head, came an extremely foolish wish, to go back and visit her old home. I’m a little afraid she wanted to show them all her fine clothes and ornaments. I’m sorry she was so silly, not to mention the bad taste of it, but nobody is perfect, no matter what story tellers say, and she paid well for her folly as we all do, alas! Of course her husband let her go—for between you and me and the lamp post, most Korean husbands aren’t very different from Americans in these [19] matters of household discipline—so off she went in a fine chair with four coolies, a stout woman servant to run by the side of the chair and a guard. Of course the women pretended to be very glad to see her, but her father, and the dog, the only two who really cared, were gone, the former to the Capital to attend a Quaga, and as for the poor dog he had been eaten six moons ago.            

Imagine then, what cruel jealousy grew in those cruel hearts, when they saw how beautiful she looked, beheld her costly dress and ornaments, and heard of all her good fortune. And now a dreadful thing happened. The mother and the daughter who were as like as two peas, or rather two beans out of the same pod, whispered and whispered a long time together that night after Kong Choo was asleep, and next day proposed that they should all go out to bathe in the stream that ran thro’ the woods I have spoken of before. Kong Choo liked that well enough. She loved those woods. There she had talked with the dear old cow, the birds and her friend the frog. She felt more at home there than anywhere. The stream was very clear and ran over white pebbles, there were little glancing bits of sunshine playing on its breast, soft shy shadows here and there, and it made a cool splashing sound, that is just the sweetest music in the world—except your mother’s voice. Here and there it reflected a little piece of the fair blue sky, but mostly the green boughs of the trees that hung over it lovingly, looking at, and listening to, their darling. In one place it lay very quiet and was quite deep. The trees grew very close here. The lights that filtered down through the leaves were a lovely green, and everything was so divinely still, just a bird note now and then, or the sleepy hum of insects. You always felt in there, that it was like a cathedral, only holier, one ought to worship and not. laugh a1oud or say silly things, but one could sit there by oneself for hours, and never be lonely, or sad, or tired of it. That is Sweet Pea could, but Bean and her mother were always rather afraid and uncomfortable.

They believed there were any number of tokgabies [20] and queeshins hiding there and never would even venture alone. But now with their minds full of one black resolve, I wonder they dared set foot in such a sacred spot, but go they did, and led Kong-Choo straight to the beautiful pool, and when she had reached the deepest part, they pushed her over on her face under the water ! The woods shuddered ! A snake hissed A little shiver ran through the pool. Something sighed, a long deep drawn sigh, then there was a low musical moan away up in the tree tops, but Peas Blossom lay white and still at the bottom of the pool, her long, dark hair floating out on the water.

Then these two guilty creatures, cold with fright, not daring to look at each other, ran quickly away. Donkey Bean dressed in her sister’s clothes, which were a little tight and short for her, she powdered her face, painted her cheeks and shaved and penciled her eyebrows, and went back in the chair to pass herself off on the Governor as his wife. So bold and cool! l cannot think for my part how she dared to do it.

The Governor of course was quite startled, and first of all, enquired about the ugly scars on her face, for she was badly pock-marked. “O,’’ said she glibly, for she had the story all ready like any old hand in wickedness, “I was badly bitten by some insects in the woods. That will all pass away in time.” “I see,” said the Governor pensively, “and are you not taller than my little Kong Choo?” “O I’ve been growing all the time, only yon haven’t noticed it till now,”‘ said the false girl. “Ah,” said the Governor. He made no more remarks, but he was not at all satisfied and was very quiet and watchful, without seeming to take much notice. This suited Bean very well. All she wanted was plenty of servants and fine clothes, and a feast every day. But she scolded and beat the servants and slaves a great deal, and was so entirely different from gentle Peas Blossom, not one of them believed she was the same, and although they dared say nothing openly, there were loud whispers that she was an imposter and that there had been same foul play.

[21] Now just at this time, the Governor had some business in the neighborhood of Kong Choo’s old home, and as he was walking one day in the woods, his attention was attracted by a cluster of exquisite and strange flowers, on the surface of the pool. He sent a servant to bring them, but they darted out of reach before they could be touched, only to reappear in the same spot a moment later. One after another, all the Governor’s attendants tried in vain, the strange flowers eluded them all, while they seemed every moment to grow more temptingly beautiful So at length, curiosity and desire overcoming dignity, the Governor himself went after them. Wonderful to relate, no sooner had he stepped into the water than a strange thing happened, the flowers floated toward him and rested in his hands! So he took them home and fastened them up over the door, where other objects of reverence were placed. Here they hung, but when Pat Choo passed through the door, the stems and leaves became entangled in her hair and pulled and disarranged it. This thing happened not once nor twice but many rimes, so Pat Choo, whose temper was uncertain at best, grew very angry, and one day when the Governor was not there, pulled them down and threw them in the fire. “There! spiteful things,” said she, “Now we will see whether you will pull my hair any more.”

Next morning, the old man whose duty was to build the fires, found among the ashes some magnificent jewels. He was frightened and dazzled at their splendor, and making sure no one saw him, gathered them up and hid them away down at the bottom of a great tok in his puok. Next day when he awoke, though at a very early hour, he found a delicious meal of the finest dainties, most skillfully prepared, and placed on a tray on top of the tok. He was startled but said nothing, and each day the same thing occurred, so the old man, who was living better than ever before in his life, could not rest content, of course, but must spy out the cause: Anybody would. Who wouldn’t rather ferret out a mystery than eat, ever since the days of Eve? Not that we hate it, want to drag it out of its lair and prove it is only a [22] common thing, but because we love it, and want to make sure it is a really truly honest wonder, and no cheating pretense, so that we may be quite justified in worshiping as much as we desire. Whatever his reason, the man rose in the night and hiding behind a big jar, waited, peeped and listened. Soon he saw a beautiful girl with a sad look rise out of the tok where the jewels were, and go to work preparing the food, so out he jumped, caught her dress before she could get away, and asked her who she was. Then she told him she was Kong Choo, and relating all that had happened her, asked him to invite the Governor to a feast next day.

This was a very unusual proceeding, but Kim was an old servant, and as he evidently had something of importance to communicate, the Governor consented to go.

Now at a Korean feast the little Korean tables on which it is served must all be of the same style, the chopsticks the same length, and the other utensils match in material and workmanship, a beautiful order ruling the whole. But now nothing matched. The Governor had one long and one short chopstick, a large rice bowl of brass, and very poor pancheon dishes of earthenware, and so it was all round, no two things of the same pattern!

“How is this that nothing matches?” said his Excellency. “Alas!” replied a plaintive and sweet voice, “Who would suppose your Excellency would have noted a small thing like the difference in a couple of chopsticks or two kinds of table service, and be blind to the difference between a tall wife and a short one, a pock marked girl and an unblemished one, not distinguishing between your own wife and an imposter.”

No sooner had the Governor heard the first tones of that familiar voice, than he grew deathly pale, and striding to the spot whence it came beheld just behind the door his own Kong Choo fairer and sweeter than ever.

So then he wouldn’t let her out of his sight for a moment; and took her back to their home, from whence [23] the wicked Pat Choo fled at once in disgrace and terror. From that time on they lived happily till the end of their lives. Whether Sweet Pea had not been drowned past resuscitation, or whether the fairies had worked their powerful charms in her behalf, the story does not say, but one thing at least is plain, those who try to do right need never despair, but on the contrary should always trust and hope, but as for the designs of the evil, their plans no matter how well made, only bring disaster on their own heads in the end.




American Enterprise in Korea


I recently saw a statement of foreign commercial interests in Chefoo, Newchwang, Canton and a few other places and the order of importance of trade was something like this: England, Germany, Japan; England, Japan, Germany, etc., but never a mention of America. She was not even “in it.” It reminds me of the story about the first race for the now noted America Cup. Queen Victoria was very much interested in the race and at about the time the yachts should have reached the line she called in some of the attendants and asked about it. “What boat is first?” asked the Queen. “The sloop ‘America’” replied the messenger. “And what is second?” said the Queen. “Alas your Majesty there is no second!” said the man. That is the way it seems from some standpoints, as to American interests in Asia. She is not only not in it with England, Germany and Japan but is not even mentioned in the order of importance. This is really not as bad as it seems. Enormous quantities of merchandise which passes as under English and other banns are frequently sold, in the first place, to them from America. Moreover if Americans in Asia did not buy English, German and Japanese merchandise, the profits of some of the big firms would be so small that the “statistics” would not look so glowing.

[24] Korea is not Asia but it is part of it and what shows here. is, in some measure, somewhat of a criterion of what the case is in China. In the first place all who know anything about the “Shining East” will admit that the most potent, the most powerful and the most sincere effort of not only the American Anglo-Saxon but of all Anglo-Saxons is in missionary effort. “It is unnecessary to enter into an academic discussion of this matter. It is condition and not theory that confronts us as has been said of other matters mostly political, so we can go on to the next step, The missionaries, good—none really bad—but many indifferent, constitute a mighty factor in all the questions in Asia. One thing which makes their influence less felt is that you may depend upon their not uniting. No not even for the general good. The isms and ists, and ins and ics and tants, are too strongly entrenched in narrow minds for them to see the general good, and so a scattered effort will for years be as in the past. And I am an optimist, too !

This letter however is not to take up missionary enterprise. I hope to later on. This is to mention, without details, some of the commercial enterprises of Americans in Korea. These, as is well known, are mainly four and are: The Oriental Consolidated Mining Company, Collbran & Bostwick Railway and General Contractors, The Deshler Steamship Co, Emigration Co. etc and W. D. Townsend & Co. There are others, and quite a number, who dabble in real estate. The largest and doubtless the most lucrative financial enterprise in Korea is the Oriental Consolidated Mining Co. The main office is in New York city and the mines and works are in northern Korea. The exact location is the Wunsan District or county and the main mills and camp is some 50 miles north. of Anju. The officers in Korea are H. F. Meserve, General Manager; J. W. Bunt, Assistant General Manager; Lancelot Pelly, Auditor; Capt. E. S. Barstow, Supt. transportation; Joseph Thorn, Supt.. Tabowie and. Taracol; Chas L. D. Kaeding, Supt. Chittabalbie, Kuk San Dong and Maibong; E. W. Mills, Assist. Supt. Taracol; J. N. Fletcher, Assist. Supt. Chittabalbie, Maibong; Alf. [25] Welhaven, Assist. Supt. Kuk San Dong; W. D. Townsend & Co., Agents, Chemulpo.

These several mines have been in operation about ten years. At present the main mills and cyanide plants are at Tabowie, Taracol, Kuk San Dong and Maibong. Taracol and Tabowie are about a mile apart, Kuk San Dong is 70 li from these to the southeast and Maibong is about 80 li south. It is a fact of general knowledge that the Company is capitalized at $5,000,000 U. S. and that the stock is above par. I have heard, but do not know for certain, that the stock, which is par value of $10 or 20 yen per share, is selling at Shanghai—what little of it there is for sale—for $19 or 38 yen per share. I know, for it is a matter of public knowledge, that the Company is in good shape, is paying dividends, and has a lot of ore in sight. As much perhaps, as the capitalization of the company.

There are about 60 foreigners, nearly all Americans, on the Concession. There are several families and a number of children. The number of Koreans employed are 2,000 more or less according to the development work in progress. It has been found that the Korean makes as good a miner as almost any other national and averages up well with the Welshman. There are a number of Chinamen employed but mostly in charge of the big wagons with sometimes 26 mules to a wagon which take the heavy freight from Anju overland to the mines.

The Company, it should have been stated, is at present engaged exclusively in mining gold. And so far it has been all quartz mining. Blasting the ore out of the mines, crushing it in the stamp mills and treating what is not secured on the copper plates and in the concentrates by the newly perfected cyanide process. These operations are very interesting and a brief description may be in order.

First, like any other pie; you must get your rabbit. Having found the ore it is assayed to find the value per ton and ascertained whether, as far as possible, it is free milling or not. Free milling meaning that the free gold in the ore combines with the copper and quicksilver [26] making an amalgam which is gathered off the big copper plates over which flows the crushed ore and water. In any event the ore must be crushed. Blasted out of the mines—and the way to dig a mine is a most interesting business or profession in itself—the ore is taken to the top of a mill. Here the big chunks of ore are crushed in a “grizzly” to pieces about the size of walnuts or larger. This mass is run between stamps which are heavy steel bars about a foot in diameter and several feet long. They drop, drop, drop, crushing the ore by their weight to an almost impalpable powder but water is added all the time and the mass is so small that it all comes out through a wire gauze so fine that a darning needle would not go through. This is the first puzzling thing. To think that all the stone from the mine must go through those little holes! The stream comes out of the stamp box on a copper plate about six feet long by two or three wide and what free gold is not caught on the copper in the box sticks to the copper plates outside. Quicksilver is thrown or brushed on the plates and in the stamp box every few hours. This requires “know how” and the professor in charge is called an Amalgamator. By no means does all the gold get caught in these two places and the dirty black slimy fluid is still precious. It is carefully led into tanks—in one process—and agitated in solution of cyanide of potassium and forced here and there until you see a perfectly clear liquid running over into many little tabs or buckets full of zinc shavings. More gold is precipitated here and it with that caught on the plates is melted, impurities removed and made into bricks and there you are! I have left out details of the cyaniding process for there are several processes and they are all complicated. The British Mine at Gwendoline has one of the finest and most perfect cyanide systems anywhere. It is a most remarkable mill and gets practically all the gold to the last grain.

Of the enterprise under the firm name of Collbran &. Bostwick, the reading public is informed through the advertisements of the Electric Light and Railway Company. This firm engages also in banking, mining, [27] water works, etc. It is an aggressive, enthusiastic and enterprising firm, has a splendid personnel, and is bound to count more in the coming years than it has in the past.

The firm of Townsend & Co. is the oldest American enterprise in Korea. With banking, brokerage, rice, and Standard Oil as some of the interests, with fire and marine insurance and with wholesale merchandise agencies its capacity is limited only by the firm’s force. The firm, or head of the firm, Mr. W. D. Townsend, is one of the most genial and best liked men in Asia.

Although the main offices of the Deshler Steamship Co are located at Kobe, Japan, the Company may properly be called a Korean enterprise. The Korean Hawaiian Emigration Co. is in charge of this firm and is strictly Korean. A review of the good work it has done appeared in a recent number of the Review. The firm has other commercial interests in Korea.

From advertisements in the public press and other general information it is known that these four firms do a large business in Korea. I hope, in a subsequent letter, to give more information concerning them and also to write a general review of missionary work. The facts I already have for this show a most interesting situation.




A Trip to Sorai Beach.


I left Seoul near the end of July, when the rainy season was in full possession of its prey. For days the summits of Pook Han and Qua Nak San had been hidden. The clouds had been dropping their fulness without much intermission, and this moisture added to the summer heat; resulted in a condition which must be experienced to be comprehended. Any country which can produce this combination can lay claim to a real “rainy season.” The rain however ceased late in the day, and at Chemulpo on board the Keung Po I watched a [28 ] brilliant sunset. During the night we weighed anchor and dropped down the bay.

The next morning we were afloat on a calm glassy sea under a cloudless sky. There was scarcely a breath of air blowing. But the motion of our vessel tempered the sun’s heat. An occasional sail or steam boat was sighted as we ploughed our course northwestward. The shoreline and islands with distant mountains were visible on our right; an island from time to time broke our left horizon line.

By eleven o’clock we rounded an imaginary point, and then changed our course to due north towards a mountainous shoreline, at an unknown distance. About twelve o’clock we passed a headland on our right, with a large island to the left, and saw before us two more, one on either hand, each of them high and rocky.

An hour later the distant shore became clear. The glasses enabled us to distinguish some of the variation in coast line and elevation and we noticed that the waves were not beating directly upon the base of the mountains as we had at first thought. Soon a bold headland was descried directly before us and there, sure enough, was the “Stars and Stripes” flying from a staff which seemed to rise from one of the several piles on the headland. These latter turned out to be houses—all except one, which was a great pile of rocks, the remains of an old beacon tower. Having come fairly close to land we found the promontory about half a mile long on the sea front. The elevation possibly seventy-five feet, and nearly equal in height along its entire front. It thus presented a bold rocky cliff with a fringe of turf along its upper edge, but devoid of trees, while the base was fringed by a pebbly shore. We skirted along this eastward, but no haven appeared until we rounded the eastern angle or heel of the point. There we found our friends awaiting us in a sampan. They had heard our steamer’s whistle, and watched through the glasses our approach. A good breeze from the southwest had sprung up so that we saw the advantages of this location for landing, which was on the leeward side of the point, and [29] therefore protected from the swell which came in from the open sea. By the time we were on shore, at the little fishing hamlet of Koo Me Po, it was nearly two o’clock. My friends were berating me for the delay I had caused in their noon day meal, for they were suffering from seaside appetites. We accordingly hastened up the hill path leading to the cliff and along that to the western end of the promontory where the houses were situated, which I had seen while approaching. The path lay along the brow of the cliff, and l had a good chance to see how high the land was above the sea-level. A hearty dinner succeeded a royal welcome and then I was at liberty to go out and take my bearings. l climbed to the top of the Pong Wha Toh, and there discovered that I was on a narrow headland shaped in miniature something like the southern end of the Italian Peninsula. Its long axis lay nearly east and west. Where I sat corresponded to the toe of the boot, while the landing place was in the hollow behind the heel. Between these two places lay an almost level table land half a mile long and a few hundred feet wide. My perch was seventy-five feet above high water mark; and there, spreading out around me. was a panorama of surpassing loveliness.

Directly southward ten miles away lay Sweet Clam island, a few miles further the high point which forms the southern cape of Chang Yun Bay. Southeastward lay a range of mountains flanking the shore of the bay. Eastward the view extended up the bay twenty miles to where the mountains rose to shield the rising sun. A perfect cone-like peak served to mark the east point. From there started a range of mountains which ran a course roughly east and west, and when it reached a point nearly north of my station the peaks were 1,000 to 1,500 feet high. At the foot of this range; instead of the surf beating directly upon it, there sloped a beautiful plain three to five miles wide, dotted here and there by villages, each of them almost hidden by its Kam (persimmon) and Nutu trees. The range of mountains fell away suddenly at a point northwest from where I sat, thus forming a natural pass which held the main road to the county [30] seat. Beyond this gap the range became high again and even more irregular in summit outline. This was made very evident later when I discovered that the sunsets took place directly behind them. On they went some twenty miles or more to the far western point of Whang Hai Do. From that promontory southward through an arc of probably sixty degrees the view was out to the open sea, except where the islands broke the horizon line;—Great Blue, Little Blue, White Wings and Rameses, thus in turn varying the prospect.

The sea was of the deep blue color which has come to be known as marine except near the shore where some cross current set, and there it showed a grey or brownish tint. Nowhere did I see any evidence of the color which has given its name to this sea.

East of the promontory lay a small and somewhat rectangular bay. Fringing the northwest angle of this bay lay the thirty or more houses which comprise the village of Koo Me Po. Extending westward from there the land is lower than on the point, and forms a broad isthmus joining the latter to the mainland. This would represent the side of a low broad ankle joining the foot or point to the leg and then to the body. From the angle where the western side of the isthmus meets the foot there begins a white sand beach, in a great sweeping curve nearly three miles long, its direction at first almost northward, then west, until at the point it runs a little southwestward. The tide was only part way in, so that there was a wide fringe of gleaming sand along the shore line, which together with the foaming white lines of the constantly breaking surf made a fitting frame for the beautiful bay thus enclosed. From my vantage-point this bay was seen in its entirety, and presented its beauties lavishly as it sparkled under the afternoon sun. At the end of the beach a sand bar ran out to a small island which has earned the cognomen of “Mysterious,” by reason of the optical illusions which it sometimes displays owing to atmospheric and sea effects. In consequence of these it seems at times but a stone’s throw away, while at other times it appears many miles removed.

[31] Beyond the point and bar the shore takes another long curving dip of several miles in extent, and the mountain range comes down to keep it closer company. These wide bays with the mountains beyond, were very effective aids to the gorgeous sunsets with which we were favored throughout our stay.

The long beach was, at it nearer end, flanked by sand dunes. These were piled in irregular hillocks, while the further parts were backed by a low ridge which resembled somewhat a seawall or breakwater. Threading its way seaward behind the sand dunes was a fresh water stream, the one which gives its name to the village past which it glides and the sand of the beach through which it has striven for centuries to maintain an outlet for itself to the sea. Its mouth has apparently been blocked by sea sand, and turned aside so often and so persistently, that now it must travel fully a mile behind the sand dunes, and parallel with the beach, before it finds an outlet to the sea just at the angle of junction between the promontory where I sat and its isthmus.

Upon the beach the surf was falling in regular incessant curling ribbons, four, five, or six at a time according to the slope of the .beach, more where it was slowly shelving, and less where it was steeper. Against the rocks on the point it was beating with ceaseless roar and piling its spray and foam high above them. Thus it fretted as the tide advanced, until it beat directly upon the cliffs. There it was stayed and soon began to recede, only to repeat the manoeuvre, as doubtless it had done through countless ages,

And so my eye roved again in circle from sea to island, from island to far headland, from headland to mountains, thence to deep bay, and so to mountains, again. From there to plain, to green bowered village, long white beach and ocean once again with its far blue islands. Beauties were on every hand, and I fell to wondering where such another location could possibly be found. I ran over in mind the various seaside resorts I had seen in America.

Old Orchard, with its bold shoreline, beach and ocean [32] view, no cliffs, no fresh water connection, no combination of sea view and land view, no mountains and only a tiny excuse for a single island. Nantasket;--A long reach of sandy beach and the ocean; nothing more. Cottage City;--a bold shore and the wide ocean view. No mountains, nor even a hill. No bays or island. Newport has cliffs and an occasional small beach but no mountains or islands. Narragansett;--Only beach. The Long Island Resorts;--Far reaches of low sandy shore; no more, Jersey Coast;--At times a fairly bold coast, but usually nothing but sand beaches with mosquito bearing lagoons. The Southern Shore Resorts;--Fine beaches, shell drives, moss-hung trees. No headland, no rocks, no mountains. The Lake Shores;--Plain as usual. Great Salt Lake;--Good swimming but not surf bathing. Mountains in the distance, but brown and arid with parched deserts intervening. California Shore;--More nearly parallel this one. They have mountains and wooded shores, but usually lack the fine island-dotted outlook.

The flora discovered in the vicinity suggested that of the middle Atlantic states of America. Scrub oaks and pines are the chief trees, wild fruits like the raspberry are plentiful. The variety of flowers both in shape and color was most remarkable. Over sixty varieties were picked in a single walk from the. village one Sunday morning in August. The soil on the promontory is rich            and deep.

Fish are taken in large quantity along the coast. We were very agreeably surprised to get fresh cod. Oysters abound and other shell fish. Wild lavender scents the air wherever you go, being crushed as you walk. The mountains furnish game. Elder Saw brought in a deer for us one day as a sample of what we might find if we cared to seek. Moreover these mountains furnish some beautiful canyons and passes. We visited one of the latter, and it was the steepest highway I have ever seen. The cliffs and formations at various points in the canon are superbly beautiful. The approach was along a rushing torrent which sang for us its free mountain song.

But by far the most remarkable part of our vacation [33] was the comparative freedom from the rains so prevalent at that season. It may be due to the peculiar situation of that bit of coast, or to the protecting influence of the mountains, north, east, south and west. However it is secured, the result was quite evident. Out of the sixteen days at the end of July and the beginning of August, which is the very centre of the rainy season, we had only four wet days and only two of those were continuously rainy. This was true in spite of the fact that the inland locations were deluged with rain. Frequently we could see the heavy clouds gather on the east and north, but as they arrived at or near our protecting range of mountains they would be rolled back or dissipated into thin air.                

It is this peculiarity of the location, which recommends it as a summer resort for Korea, for if rain is at-. the minimum, sunshine will be at the maximum, The latter is a condition to be desired when sojourning where the sea almost surrounds you.

The prevailing wind was from the south west directly off the open sea. The surface of the water was a constant study. It changed with every tide, current, and cloud condition; by conflicting winds and counter air currents, by varying depths and tide changes. These by the way are not so troublesome at this point on the coast as they are, for example, at Chemulpo. For here the tide is not confined to narrow bounds as there. Its movement therefore is only the normal rise and fall usually found on the open coast.

The rocks around the point furnish homes for an endless variety of aquatic life. And many were the hours we spent as interested students of the wonders there revealed. The sandy shore provides a field for still another class of phenomena owing to the different species which inhabit it.

The temperature conditions were eminently satisfactory. Perhaps we were too cool more often than we had expected. We even found the evening fire a positive comfort at times. One thing we were especially thankful for—we could sleep without mosquito nets. An [34] occasional mosquito was seen, but so rarely that we were not alarmed in the least. This admirable condition is probably due to a combination of circumstances. The absence of trees on the point, its height above and distance from the adjoining land, and the prevailing breeze from the open sea. Whether from one or all of these causes, the fact itself was a matter of general remark.

The coast line steamers pass and repass inside the further island, leaving their trail of blue smoke to mingle with the distant haze. Daily the native fishing fleet works out and in with the tide. Chinese junks with queer sails of many colors and hulks that seem unfloatable ride slowly by. At one time a fleet of thirty or more swept the bay in search of a jelly fish, which seemed to. have been “epidemic’’ about that time. It was rare sport to watch them land the wriggling masses by means of a net at the far end of a long pole. Each junk had a crew of five men who fished from its deck and from a little dory. Three on the former and two in the latter.

So the days went by in quiet succession. The mornings neath the shade of the “Pergola,” swinging in a hammock, reading, dreaming, or talking; anon writing or studying. Afternoons in tramping, boating and bathing. The days drifted into weeks, their quiet passage disturbed at intervals by the arrival of the boat and the mail she brought.

All too soon it was time to set our faces homeward to the chosen fields of our living and loving service. But we had added such a gallery of beautiful pictures upon the walls of memory, that the long winter months are yet brightened by them, and life has become more dear by reason of our sojourn at this ‘Home by the Sea.”

                       .            J. W. HIRST


[35] Editorial Comment.

We much regret that the January issue of the REVIEW is so late, but we are in hopes that we shall soon be able to make up for lost time and that the February number will be out shortly. Although perhaps a little behind time we wish all our friends the best wishes of the season, and trust that the new year may be rich with good things right up to the last day of next December. We bespeak for the REVIEW your continued support, not simply in the taking and reading of the Magazine (for we intend to make it of so much interest to those who desire to know about the Far East, that they will feel obliged to read it,) but especially, in the jotting down of notes concerning the many things of interest in this and adjacent lands, and sending them to the REVIEW so that others may reap the benefits of your investigations. As heretofore the pages of the REVIEW are open to all. Every phase of every question vital to the interests of this land can be discussed in these pages, and we will in the future, as in the past, endeavor to give a true and just statement of conditions as they exist ..




As is well known, the editor of the REVIEW, Prof. Homer B. Hulbert. is now absent from Korea on a special mission for His Majesty, the Emperor.      .

The present management of the REVIEW regret exceedingly to note the persistent rumors circulated by certain parties concerning the terms under which Mr. Hulbert has made his trip, and the large financial remuneration that he has received for the same.

Of course there are those who could not conceive of any one undertaking any work except for personal benefit mainly in the shape of financial remuneration; but it is positively known to the present management of the REVIEW and might be well surmised by all those who are personally acquainted with Mr. Hulbert and know his impulsive generosity, that in this enterprise Mr. Hulbert  [36] has barely received his expenses, and in fact, has undertaken the work at a financial loss. Of course the class of people referred to above will refuse to believe this statement, but it is due to the editor of this magazine and to the public genera1ly to make this announcement, although in doing this we have not even asked Mr. Hulbert’s permission.




After a long term of service in Korea, formerly as Consul at Chemulpo, and latterly as His Imperial Japanese Majesty’s Minister to Korea, His Excellency G. Hayashi is about to leave us. His many friends, including all the foreigners of every nationality, most sincerely regret his departure, and believe that it will be hard to find a more genial person and a more straightforward gentleman among his nationals.




In our News Column attention is called to the newly organized firm known as the Collbran-Bostwick Development Company. This is not a new firm, but a reorganization and enlargement of the old firm of Collbran & Bostwick that has been so successful and prominent in business affairs for many years past.

Dr. Wells’ article on “American Enterprise in Korea.” will help to show the prestige of Americans in this land. We hope to have subsequent articles showing the various enterprises of the different nationalities engaged in business here; but we are pleased to be able to mention the Americans first, as up to the present .time they have held the first place among the western nations along these lines in Korea.

We trust that there will be continual development in this direction, and that all will tend to unite the interests of the East and the West.




The most important event in the history of Korea for the new year is the establishment of the Japanese Residence in this land. His Excellency G. Hayashi leaves Korea, and practically takes the Legation with him to [37] make wav for the establishment of the new Residency.

Various rumors have been heard concerning the Residency’s abode, and what it will undertake; but none of these at the present time concern us, and we surmise the better way would be to wait for facts.            

In the appointment of Marquis Ito to this position, it is generally stated that Japan has appointed the best man at her disposal; and that with Marquis Ito here, if he is given a free hand, we may expect to see decided progress and marked developments following his arrival.

It has been our experience after long residence in Korea. that the Koreans are remarkably amenable to reason and to fair treatment. Let the Korean see that you are desirous of his welfare, and you have won him as a friend. Marquis Ito in his addresses is stated to realize fully that the great thing for Japan to do is to cement the union already effected, by the upbuilding of mutual trust and friendship between the people of the two countries, and the making of it evident to all and that the interests of one are the interests of the other. Certainly, if Marquis Ito succeeds in this, Korea and Japan will not simply be neighboring nations who ought to have but one purpose, but will be sister nations knit together by the closest of ties.

Our contemporary, the “Korea Daily News,” is attempting to prove conclusively, that the establishment of any Residency in this land by the Japanese Government is illegal, contrary to treaty and international law. As far as this is concerned, we hardly think it is necessary to say much. We have to deal rather with the fact that the Residency is here, and to consider therefore how best the mutual interests of the two countries could be maintained.

From newspaper statements of Marquis Ito’s speeches, we are led to believe that he realizes how much of the present feeling toward. the Japanese has been brought about by the presence in this land of hordes of unscrupulous Japanese, who, deeming themselves amenable to no law, have cheated. robbed and brow-beaten the Koreans.

This is a difficult problem to tackle, but we are glad [38] to learn that it is one of the first that the Resident expects to undertake and straighten out. Let it be once seen in Korea, that before Japanese officials right is right and that the poor weak Korean farmer or even coolie can obtain redress even from the Japanese; and half the battle will be won. Of course the Korean courts of justice and the magistracies will also have to be regulated and brought into conformity with modern ideas of justice and equity; but if the Resident could once win the confidence of the Korean officials and people by solving the first problem, the balance will be an easy matter.

In his arduous undertaking, the Marquis will have the sympathy of all the foreign residents in Korea, and the world will watch with interest, to see whether Japan will be as successful in her management of an alien power as she has been in the war .



News Calendar.

On December 30th of last year there was a big fire at Chang Tong and a two story Japanese building and several adjoining Korean and Japanese houses were burnt down.    .

On New Year’s day all the foreign envoys and representatives were received in audience by His Majesty. General Hasegawa, the Commander of the Japanese army in Korea, was also received in audience, accompanied by twelve officers of the infantry, thirty of the cavalry, and eight of the gendarmerie.

The Educational Department has requested the Home Department to send the new ca1endars and almanacs to each District and Province.

On the 10th of January, there was a special meeting of the Debating Club of the Seoul Y.M.C.A., and they had a lively debate on the question, Resolved that in order to bring about the highest advancement of a nation and the best welfare of a government, education is better than the establishment of laws.

It must be interesting to know that there was talk about changing the seal of the office of the Mayor of Seoul. This is the seal that requires to be surcharged on all deeds of houses and property and in around Seoul.

Song Biung Choon, the root of the Il Chin Hoi, has recently had several warm discussions with Ye Che Yong. the present Minister of Home Affairs, trying to force the latter to effect the readjustment of the division of the Districts and Provinces,

             [39] We regret very much to state that Mr. Bagiwara, the Secretary of His Imperial Japanese Majesty’s Legation here, has returned to Japan but we hope that we shall see him back in Korea in some other capacity ere long, as we have known him long, and he has left many friends behind.

We are glad to hear that the Young Men’s Society have started the publication of a Scientific Magazine.

The Magistrate of Eung Joo, Major Shin Woo Kyun, having put to death some of the people in his District without giving them any trial, the Law Department has degraded him from office and ordered his arrest.

People coming from the District of Suh Chun, South Choong Chung Province, have nothing but praise and good report of Mr. Min Kenn Sic, the Magistrate of that District, saying that he is a wise and loving official, and that there are consequently no robbers or peace disturbing bandits that are prevalent in other places and everything is quiet, and the people are happy.

On the 20th inst. M. Colin de Plancy, the French Minister to this court bade farewell to his numerous friends in Seoul, and left for France. We all regretted to see him depart, as he had been here so long.

Mr. Gordon Paddock sent a letter to the Home Office requesting them to let him know the population of Kiang Kui, Whang Hai, and Pyeong An Provinces.            

In the District of Kai Sung. around Song Do City. the robbers have been trespassing on the royal tombs of the “Korea” dynasty. At many places they had dug holes for shelter five to seven cubic feet. When the keeper of the tombs reported the fact to the Imperial Bureau of Ceremonies, they removed him from office, and ordered a company of the Song Do regiment to be dispatched against the law-breakers, and sent down officials to sacrifice for the neglect.

Mr. Hyun Chai, the foremost and most up-to-date of Korea’s literary men, who has been in the Educational Department for more than ten years translating and compiling books, and who has been most active along the line of producing text books and general literature for the Koreans, has now started a publishing house and a sort of public library, with joint Japanese and Korean capital.

Prince Ye Chai. Wan arrived in Tokio on the 15th, had an audience with the Mikado on the 24th, was decorated by the Mikado, and has returned to Korea.

Mr. Han Chi Yu, formerly secretary of the Korean Legation at Tokio and who has now charge of the Korean students in Japan, has been appointed attaché to the Korean Ambassador.

Han Chang Soo, the late Superintendent of Trade of Mokpo, has been appointed chief of the Diplomatic Bureau.

Mr. Kim Yu Sic, chief of the Palace Bureau of Police, bas been transferred to the Prefecture of Eui Ju; and Mr. Yu Sung Jan, brother of Yu Kil Jun, has been appointed in his place at the Palace.

[40] On the 16th January, a band of robbers broke into the house of the late Pak Chung Yang, and got away with a considerable booty. It seems incredible that in the heart of the most popular section of a city like Seoul, with a police sentry box close to the house, such a thing could be possible, and how the robbers succeeded in getting away without arousing the police is a marvel.

The members of the Il Chin Hoi continue to besiege the home Col Yun Chul Kiu, demanding him to resign his present office of Commissioner of Police, but His Majesty refuses to allow him to resign.

Mr. Kim Eung Yang, the Superintendent of Trade for Pyeng Yang, has reported to the Home Department that a Japanese named Fukushima has built a bridge across the Tai Tong River, receiving toll from those that use it, and that he has received a permit for this purpose from the Japanese Consulate down there, but that he has no permit from the Korean authorities.

The business people of the city of Pyeng Yang by mutual agreement closed their doors and refused to do business for several days, alleging that the court had arrested and thrown in jail Mr. An Tai Keuk, President of the Chamber of Commerce, without any charge.

It is announced in the native papers, that Gen. Min Young Whui has made a donation to a newly organized scientific school.

It is rumored that Ye Yong Koo, the Chief of the Seoul Branch of the Il Chin Hoi, is desirous of changing all the officials in the Government, and has already named 188 people.

Messrs. Colleran and Bostwick announce the transfer of their properties and interests to “The Collbran-Bostwick Development Company;” a corporation in process of organization and registration in Hartford, Conn, U. S. A. The directory of the Company will be an active one, composed of the following, persons:- Henry Collbran, Harry Rice Bostwick, Stephen Loper Selden, Eugene Aylmer Elliott, Heiichiro Maki. The Company will act as Agents in Korea, China, Japan and Eastern Asia for The American Korean Electric Co., of Connecticut, U. S. A.; The American Korean Mining Co., of Connecticut, U. S. A.; The Korean Syndicate, Limited. of 503 Salisbury  House, London; The International Syndicate, Limited, of 31 Coptball Ave London; The Manchu Syndicate, Limited, of 10 and 11 Austin Friars London; Opportunities are desired for investment. Engineers will be sent to examine mines and other properties without expense to the owners. Correspondence should be addressed to The Collbran-Bostwick Development Company, Seoul,

It would appear that the scholars (Confucians of South Hamkyeng Province are attempting to stir up a movement against the new treaty. They have circulated a manifesto, the principal points of which are:--The abolition of the new treaty; The customs to be again put in charge of a British subject; The return of the Communications De . . .

No. 2 (February)

Are the Koreans Increasing in Numbers ?   41

Korean New Year Folklore           47

Women's Rights in Korea    51

Korean Conundrums    59

Severance Hospital   62

Report of Bible Committee of Korea for 1905  67

Editorial Comment     73

News Calendar   77








[page 41]


Are the Koreans Increasing in Numbers?


To answer the above question with a plain yes or no would be easy. But neither one would be. accepted as final by people who want a reason for what they accept as truth. To any one taking either answer it would be no easy task to prove that his conclusion was correct; but from all the facts that I have been able to gather on the subject I am forced to take the answer no, which answer I shall try to give facts to sustain. To get facts in this as in nearly all kindred subjects in Korea is very difficult. It would be desirable to know what the facts and figures were ten years ago, or for some other given period of time. But there are absolutely no reliable statistics to which one may appeal for information on the subject. After nearly seven years in Korea; much of which time has been spent in the homes of the people, I am convinced that the people are not increasing in numbers. If one asks what is the population of Korea, the answer is likely to be most any thing from seven or eight millions up to fifteen or sixteen millions. But it is all very largely guess work, from the. lack of facts on which to base any calculations. Some one may say “Take the figures as they are found in the official tax reports.” Such figures ae made up from the reports of the elders of the villages and are supposed to give the number of houses in each and every village; but as a matter of fact they do not give the correct numbers and therefore are misleading in [42] nearly every case. I have been told by the people of a village, that while there are more than twenty-five houses in their village, they report only five. And so they say it is with all the other villages, none of them report the full number of houses. This is all done of course for the purpose of making the taxes as light as possible on each village. But some one may say “What has all this to do with the statement that the population is not increasing?” Nothing at all except it shows how impossible it is from present data to tell what the population is, or how much it is increasing or decreasing during any given period of time.

If the population is not increasing we may well enquire why? It certainly is not because the people do not desire to have posterity. The chief desire of nearly all Koreans is that they may have sons to perpetuate their names after they are gone. This desire, which is far more intense than any one who has not observed it can well imagine, leads to many foolish practices, of which child marriage is by no means the least among them. This desire on the part of parents to see their children’s children leads to the marriage of their boys at the age of ten or twelve years and some times even younger. Some time ago I was talking with an old man who was very much troubled because his grandson was twenty years old and was not married. He said: “When I was seventeen years old I had a son and here is this big boy twenty years old and not yet married.” On more than one occasion I have had mothers come to me and beg that I find a wife for their “big sons;” the boys perhaps not more than seventeen or eighteen years old at the time. I have thus gone into detail for the purpose of showing that Koreans are not averse to having children born to them—that is provided the children born are sons. The desire for children, both on the part of men and women, is for sons and not for daughters ; this is because only sons can offer the sacrifices to the spirits of the departed parents.

Let it be remembered that it is always polite to enquire, of one whom you have just met for the first time, [43] how many sons he has; and you will .see that it is easy to get some idea of the number of children that are born in many of the homes. In making this enquiry wed o not say how many children have you; but only how many sons have you? If you want to know about the number of daughters you must enquire after that. It is no unusual thing to learn that a man has had born unto him a large family of from six to twelve children. The numbers born in most cases would satisfy even Mr. Roosevelt’s desires for large families. There is always some thing sad in the fact when you learn that more than half of the children born died before they passed from the age of childhood. This would be a very interesting subject for some one to take up and classify the facts as they could be gathered and see at what age these children die. My experience in trying to gather facts on the subject is that nearly all the men who have reached the age of forty or fifty years have more children dead than living. I would say that most of them never reach the age of five years. Some time since an old gentleman told me that he had no family except his wife; on enquiry I learned that there had been ten children born unto him, all of whom were dead.

The death rate among Koreans who have reached the years of maturity does not seem to me to be very much higher than it is in other countries. When a baby has once run the gauntlet of the numerous “pestilences that walk in darkness” and the various kinds of “destructions that waste at noonday,” which beset the period of childhood in Korea., the chances for reaching “three score and ten” are about as good as in other countries.

Since the facts of the high death rate among children cannot be denied it is the most natural thing to enquire what is the trouble and why it is that so many children die in Korea? To those of us who have lived here some time and observed things somewhat as they really are, the question is not why so many children die; but rather why is it that they do not all die before they reach the state of maturity? Some one has said that it is one of the wonders of the world that any child lives to maturity, [44] If this be true of the children in Christian land s it is doubly true of those in heathen countries. You may take nearly all the things that mothers in Christian countries count as necessary for the health of their children, and they arc not even known to the Korean mother and her baby. Take the bath for instance; would mothers in Christian countries get on without water and soap? And yet the Korean mother has been getting on—in some sort of a way—for all these centuries without even knowing that there was a cake of toilet soap in all the world; and as for water, of course she knows that it is good to drink, but as for being good to bathe m, she has never thought of that. In fact she considers it absolutely dangerous to bathe the baby; since to remove the dirt from the top of its head would only let the wind enter and kill it. Some one will think that this cannot be true of the higher classes. It is true of all who have not learned directly from the foreigners that it will not kill the baby to wash its head. Nearly all the babies one sees in Korea have the tops of their heads covered with dirt so thick that you cannot see the skin at all. How the poor little things survive with such a scale of dirt on their heads I do not know. Thousands of them never had a good bath from the day they were born to the present.

There is no such thing as a cradle or a nice soft bed for a baby in Korea. It sleeps on a stone floor with nothing better than an old quilt for its bed. The floor may be so hot that it will nearly roast, or it may be so cold that it will nearly freeze the baby, but it must lie on it just the same. It depends largely on what time of day it is as to how hot or how cold the floor will be. The fires are kindled for the purpose of cooking the meals and are rarely kindled at any other time. I heard a foreign lady say some time since that she thought many of the children die from the effects of being roasted on these hot floors. Let it be remembered that the floor will he quite as hot in August as it is in December, since the cooking must go on whether it be hot or cold, and this is the purpose for which the fires are made.

When the baby is not lying on the floor it is strapped           [45] on to somebody’s back. It may be the mother’s or the father’s back; but it will more than likely be the brother’s or the sister’s back, when there are older children in the family. They do not have to be very old either before they are pressed. into this business of carrying baby on their back. Many times I have seen little girls not more than five or six years old with the baby strapped hard and fast to her back, while she ran around the yard or out into the street, taking her part. in the play with the other children of the village. So the baby passes its time either lying on a stone floor or strapped to somebody’s back. As to baby’s clothes: neither baby nor its mother ever heard of a bit of flannel. It has on one suit made of cotton cloth, in style not unlike its father’s or mother’s, except that it has more open .space through which the wind may find its way direct to baby’s skin. If the weather is warm it often has not one thread of clothes upon it. This is not only true while it is an infant but holds good up to the age of eight or ten years. This is true of both rich and poor alike, since it is custom that governs it and not money. It is no unusual thing to see children playing about the streets with only a short jacket on, while the mercury is at or below the freezing’ point.

The Korean mother knows but two ways of feeding her baby. The first of course is the natural way and as long as all is well the baby may be well fed. But in case this supply of natural food fails, as it often does, the only other thing that the mother knows to do is to feed the baby on rice. The rice may be cooked and the water given to baby but it will also be well stuffed with rice as soon as it can swallow it, although there are plenty of cows in Korea and goats too, the Koreans know nothing whatever of the use of milk. And what seems strange to me is that they do not care to learn the use of it even in feeding their children. The baby is allowed to eat any and every thing that it can get its hand on and cares to try. No one ever stops to question whether it is digestible or indigestible, baby wants it and that is enough .

From what I have already said it will be seen that [46] every .child born in Korea is compelled to make an unequal fight for its life from the lack of helps that it so much needs, But when we take into consideration all that it has to meet in the way of disease and the remedies which are employed to cure the diseases, it is indeed marvelous that any one ever lives to tell the story. Smallpox, measles, scarlet fever, typhus and other various kinds of fevers, colds and so on to the end of the catalogue of diseases; with a seven or ten years periodical scourge of cholera thrown in for good measure; these all give us some little idea of what must be the way of diseases by every child that is born 1n Korea. Let it be understood too that in all these contagious diseases there is no sort of effort made to keep the disease from house to house, till the whole community has been infected. Children with small-pox, or scarlet fever are allowed to play in the village streets as long as they .are able to do so, without any one ever raising the question as to whether it would be well to have them remain in doors till they are well.

As to the remedies that are employed to cure these various diseases I can say only a few words. The child is taken sick and the doctor is called. He comes, examines the patient and says: “The child has inside sickness but I think that the use of the needle will make it all right.” So he draws from his pouch a rusty needle six inches long and proceeds to perforate the child’s stomach till it has the appearance of a pepper box lid. Next day he calls again only to find that the treatment for some UNKNOWN CAUSE has for once FAILED to do its work, so the patient is no better. He then enquires of the mother whether the child has been able to eat the full amount of half cooked rice and raw turnips that he prescribed; and also whether it ate all of the roasted rat that he prescribed for it to take at bed time last night. Then he lays aside his large colored spectacles and looks wise while he says: “‘We shall have to try another remedy.” At the same time he produces from his pouch a certain kind of dry powder which he places on the pit of the child’s stomach and calls for a live coal of fire which [47] he applies to the powder, with the result that a spot as large as a dime is burnt right into the flesh. This remedy is often applied to other parts of the body, especially to the soft spot in the top of baby’s head. Every where in Korea these scars are seen on top of the heads of many of the boys and girls.

My answer to the question at the top of this article is : Koreans are not increasing in numbers. The reason for it is the high death rate among the children.




Korean New Year Folklore.


Just how much the superstitions of the East have to do with its national and religious life would be hard to determine. Their value taken into consideration certainly aids in a true interpretation of the national mind and religious life of any nation. The mythology of the Greeks is closely associated with their religious life. The Ship Yu has been called the Pilgrim Progress of Buddhism and it has been shown that Lio Tsai was written by collecting that peculiar mass of folk lore known as the fox myths and made unforgettable by that brilliant star of superstitious literature.          

The folk lore of the Korean new year is rich with these myths. The first twelve days have the names, snake, horse, sheep, monkey, chicken, dog, pig, rat, ox, tiger, rabbit and dragon. Doubtless at one time there was a myth connected. with each of these days. So far I have discovered only those. connected with the rabbit and dragon days.

According to my teacher’s reasoning the rabbit is an animal very easy to be frightened, therefore upon their day it is very easy for anyone to be frightened. It follows then that only the brave must venture forth. The man of the house must be the first to arise to show his wife that there is no danger in her house. She remains at home the entire day so there is no reason for her [48] nerves to be unstrung. In order that the man may do his part in keeping this day the superstition has it that if he is the first to rise the year win be full of peace—and who wouldn’t be willing to rise first one day in the year to keep peace in the family? If upon the dragon day the hair is combed it is said that it grows very long during the year, the reason being that the dragon is a long reptile. Even today some of the women save all their hair that comes out during the year and bum it outside their main gate for there is a superstition that it will drive the devil away, his majesty not liking the smell of burning hair. At one time it was quite universally believed by the Koreans that upon this first day of the first moon the devil came to each house and tried on the shoes that they leave outside of their houses. This superstition has such a hold upon the ignorant class that even now they hide their shoes upon this night, for he leaves sickness in his track and the person to whom the shoes belong will be very ill during the year. It is believed that he has power only till midnight. Some houses take advantage of this by putting a sifter in the top of their house, it being believed that the devil will become so interested in counting the holes that he will forget how quickly twelve o’clock comes.

The moon has always played an important part in imaginative literature. Before there were books she was admired and worshiped by the people of the East. The moon is still eagerly watched by a few men upon the night of the fifteenth of the first month, there being a superstition that he who is the first to see the moon rise will have his desire fulfilled and during the year a child will be born into the home—best of all this child wilt be a son.

The farmer watches the moon upon this same night for a different reason; it indicates what his crop will be. When he first sees it, one portion shines out more clearly to the eye; that particular part, be it north, south, east or west, indicates the part of the country that will be most prosperous during the year. If he sees the thick side as he first looks upon it, it will be a year of plenty. If he sees the thin side first it will be a year of famine—if upon [49 ] the next night the moon is red there will be a drought, otherwise there will be abundance of rain, -, 

Upon this same night on the hills can be seen those who by worshiping the moon with fire-brands made of rice straw believe that they will find peace and will have no sickness du ring the year.      An interesting superstition as to how to get rid of misfortune comes to us upon this fourteenth day of the first moon. It is thought that the spirit of misfortune and especially the spirit of sickness can be passed on to one’s neighbor. The question is, how can they get anyone to take the spirit? It is solved in this way. A doll, or in some sections of the country when there is small pox in the family a horse, is made of rice straw and in its chest some money with prayers to the evil spirit is placed and it is thrown out upon the street. The thought is that the boy to whom the money appeals more than the superstition will take up the doll and carry it away and in doing so will take with him the ill luck of the house. The boy however has a superstition of his own, for he has heard if he throws away, upon this same evening, the wooden ornament fastened to the strings of his purse ill luck will have no power over him during the new year.

The fifteenth day of the first moon has more superstitions connected with it than any other day in the Korean calendar. To begin with if early in the morning a cool drink of sul (Korean wine) is taken it is said that one’s hearing will he perfect during the year. This day is also a feast day, it being believed that if one eats vegetables in the homes of three of his friends upon this day there will be no danger of their making him sick when he eats them in the summer. If upon this day or the day preceding, all five of the grains, namely hemp, millet, rice, wheat and pulse are eaten by the people the year will be a year of plenty. The children are given all the nuts they want to eat upon this day, the superstition being that if they eat them they will not be troubled with skin disease during the year. The dog is the only one of the family that is not permitted to join in the festivities, as it [50] is said if he is fed early upon this day more flies than usual will pester the home. This day is the Korea groundhog day, it being believed if the day is clear, good weather for the year is prophesied; if it is cloudy stormy days may be expected.

On the evening of the fifteenth the house is well lighted, there being a superstition that if the houses are well lighted upon this night sickness will be absent during the entire year. Upon this same night it was at one time believed that the stone bridges possessed the power to give up their strength so that it a person walked over a certain number of them his limbs during the year would not become tired. Another story has it that if as they walk along upon this night the first words they hear are pleasant words their business will prosper throughout the entire year. The priests must have at one time taken advantage of this superstition for there is a story current that if upon this day rice and money are given them their blessings will mean success through the year.

It is easy to see the force of the superstition that is connected with the first day of the second moon. It is if the house is well dusted upon this day there will be no worry in the home during the year.           The birds have their part in the superstitions of Korea as well as in other countries. Good luck is brought to the home if the birds begin to build their nests in the roof upon the third day of the third moon, and if upon the ninth day of the ninth moon just as they are beginning to go south for the winter they are fed with a red bean they will come back in the Spring bringing good fortune with them. The most interesting story that I have found is that the magpie goes to heaven on the seventh. day of the seventh moon to assist in making the star bridge over which the heavenly lovers Ching Yuh and Kyain Oo cross and spend their one short night in each other’s company. A superstition held among many of the people today is that sickness can be prevented by the eating of bird flesh during the winter sacrifice to all the spirits, which takes place during the twelfth moon.





[51] Women’s Rights in Korea.


A few weeks ago a Korean woman called upon the writer, and presented an invitation to the opening meeting of a native women’s club. She said they wished to receive Bible instruction every Sabbath evening, while on other days secular studies would engage their school hours. My caller was evidently not one of the usual order of Korean women. She was attired in foreign clothes, the colors of which were on distressingly bad terms with each other. Although it was winter her garments were such as were suitable for summer, and she carried a feather fan. This was compensated for by a bright red silk underskirt, kept much in evidence, and a well padded Korean long coat. Added to this were a large pair of round Korean goggles and a great deal of badly selected jewelry. There is no desire to ridicule, but the transition stage in the dress of Eastern peoples is sad to a degree, to the foreigner who loves them and holds their dignity and respectability dear as his own. The more he cares for the people the more bitterly does he resent the harrowing and pitiful variety of incongruities evolved by the natives, in their zealous efforts to imitate the foreigner.

But thus far, among Koreans at least, the madness seems to have been mainly confined to the men, so my mercury fell to the bottom of the thermometer when I beheld this woman, especially as it seemed likely that her dress was in a measure the exponent of the principles and ideas of the aforesaid club.

However I gladly accepted her invitation, and the following Sunday evening found me at the appointed place.

The house was well filled with women who seemed of the upper middle class, mostly over thirty, excepting a few syaxies the first mem hers of the school.

These girls were dressed in purplish black cotton cloth, made in one garment, waist and skirt in one piece—something like the dress worn by foreign girls. I learned [52] later that to prove their escape from the trammels of Eastern superstition into the broad free path of modern progress, these little girls were being taught to go back and forth to school through the streets in broad daylight with no sheltering apron over their heads. To anyone familiar with Korean custom, the extreme care with which the young daughters even of the poorest are sheltered, and the light in which Korean women are regarded, who go abroad uncovered, such a change is appalling. Women, not to mention young girls, are too delicate and frail a moiety of the social body to be set in the vanguard of those who trample down the most firmly established customs and the conservatism of centuries. Fearing that in this I had seen another exponent of the principles of the new club, I became still less hopeful.

I found it was to be finally organized that evening; and the following prospectus was offered to us all to be signed, and publicly approved by each;





“When this world was being made, Heaven and Earth were first created, and after this man. Thus man can not live without the Earth. Mankind was then classified into two sexes; and without the existence of women, mankind could not have had its growth. This fact needs no proof, and shows that the position of women is by no means inferior to that of man. Therefore should we inquire more deeply into the real cause of growth in power and wealth of a nation it is the woman behind who knows how to take care of the household, teach her children, and has education enough to do good to her country and judgment enough to make her undertakings benefit the world. This is the reason why the women of some of the Western nations have an equal standing with men, and are independent to say and act what they think to be the right thing.

“The women of our country are the most pitiable of all civilized humanity. They do not have a voice in the affairs of the household, much less can they hear a word about the State or the public, and are enclosed like prisoners or bottled up fish; not even allowed to breathe aloud, and are continually under the oppression of men. A woman is not allowed to talk back at her father-in-law, or her husband, or any of the male members of the househo1d. At the present time the Korean people are the most degraded people on earth; and to be cast in the lowest lot of such people is certainly a pitiable condition.

[53] “Therefore, in order to recover the rights and independence of the women of our country, we must first see that the women are in a position to do their duty in governing the household; and secondly that they become well educated and made capable of doing good to their nation and the world. In all the enlightened countries of the Western world, one can hardly find a woman who has not been through some kind of school, and the ladies of the nobility and the wealthy have their different organizations for social, literary or commercial purposes.

“In these Ladies Commercial Organizations, they import valuable foreign goods, and having put them before the best market, they find themselves with a goodly amount of well and honestly earned profit. With the money thus gained they help the household, the schools that need such help, and give away to different kinds of charity. In doing these things they act independently.

“In unity there is strength. Though a bamboo rod may bend, a bunch of them will make a post for the beam of a house to rest upon, and though the stream may be small, many of them can make the vast ocean. So if we Korean women likewise follow the footsteps of the women of other enlightened countries, and unite our inferior knowledge, strength, wealth and judgment, and form such a society, and see that trade is advanced and thus the public benefit be promoted; then the true theory of mankind will be permanently established in our land. Then, we shall be in the same position as the ladies of other countries, and our rights shall be equal to those of men.

“We must remember that. ‘After the cock-crow, tbe dawn comes.’ and ‘After work, there is reward’ and we must make haste in doing even one thing. So, may all the ladies of the land consider the present state of our country and the present necessity of such a thing, and quickly organize such a commercial society and import and export goods from and to China, Japan and other countries in the East. as well as Europe and America. Should we put forth together our feeble efforts, there will be a way of accomplishing our object to the benefit and welfare of our nation, and not only this; should such a thing be started, ladies will also gradually be able to stand in the shining light of the sun and breathe the sweet heavenly air freely and happily.

“Now, it is our earnest desire that all shall join us in this true and noble aim.

(Signed). Founder


Ninth Year of Kwang Moo.

Tenth Month,    Day.”


It is quite evident from the tone of the first paragraph that some at least of our Eastern sisters are not inclined to discount women’s importance, and have made long strides—”strides” sounds unwomanly, yet it has a sort [54] of fitness here in the march of so called progress, and that they have begun with the delusion that, in the “right (?) to do and say whatever one thinks best” lies the secret of power, greatness and liberty.

They have caught a glimpse of a great truth when they have learned that “it is the woman behind who knows how to train her children; who is the real cause of growth in power and wealth of a nation;” but they have apparently made a fatal mistake as to what sort of women, with what sort of training of children, are to perform the enormous task.

The following paragraph develops their ideas on this point. We are told that Korean women are pitiable, most of all the world, because they are not allowed a voice in household government, or to hear anything of public affairs, are shut up, physically and metaphorically, and—”sorrows crown of sorrow”—are not allowed to “talk back at their father-in-law, husband, or any male member of the family.” Women it seems must be made fit to govern their household and children, and be a blessing to the nation and the world, through schools, commercial organizations, and by banding themselves in “women ‘s rights societies.

It is far from the purpose of the writer to make public the views expressed in this little document-which indeed seems to bear the ear marks of some enterprising commercial firm—for the purpose of entertainment or curiosity, far less to cast ridicule upon these poor women “groping blindly above them for light,” but because it contains points worthy of the consideration of every foreigner interested in Koreans, and especially every foreign woman interested in Korean women.

It is quite true that the condition of the native women is “pitiable,” not so much because they can not rule and talk back, as because they are shut in mentally, have no outlook, no training, no light.

The pitiful cry of McDonald’s old laird, “I dinna ken whar I cam frae,” ‘‘I dinna ken whar I’m gaen till,” seems to be always ringing in our ears among the native women.

[55] This is a time of national crisis, they know not whom or what to trust, they are stirring and reaching out in every direction for truth, help, light; in their eagerness they are only too likely to go wrong and follow some will o’ the wisp into quagmires or pitfalls.

There are two radical misconceptions in the document under review, which were they limited to its writers and the few women represented by it, would not be worthy of a second thought, but they arc extremely general in Korea, if not in the whole East, are fundamental, and if followed out are sure to lead to ruin.

The first, is wrong ideas of the great majority of Western women, whom they take as patterns, and wrong ideas of woman’s sphere and ideals. 

As we all know well, the great body of Anglo-Saxon women are never heard of on platform or stage, or in newspapers. From the cradle to the grave they are unknown outside of their own little circle of connections and friends. Many would consider publicity as misfortune. They never seek, or dream of seeking, political power, they have a quiet scorn or pity for those who do. They make our home lands the happy and powerful countries they are. But in the novels, the plays, the police gazettes, on the world’s great globe trotting highways, the other class, the “new women,” the women who ‘‘talk back, who govern, who make a noise, who parade on platforms, are the ones who are in evidence, and who are supposed to represent “the free, independent, ruling western woman” with “rights equal to those of men.” It is probable too that far from seeing foreign women go about everywhere with uncovered faces natives gain exaggerated and mistaken ideas of them. Given this woman for a model, they proceed to form their theories of women’s sphere and women’s ideal—as we have seen, to govern, to belong to commercial and social clubs, to be educated, to do and say what one likes, to go abroad freely and often, to answer back one’s mankind, to obtain power and money, the one through the other, to be on an equality with men; all this is the ideal they seem to have put. before themselves, We all know what a mistake this is, [56] but they in their present condition are really unhappy, and they do not know what is the trouble, or where lies the remedy. They can not go abroad, and study foreign women as we study them, they can not read Ruskin’s beautiful essay on women’s sphere. We must try to set before them right ideals to show them the truth, that the happy women are not the ones of whom one hears most, who belong to the greatest number of clubs, or meddle most in the world’s noisy matters but the quiet mothers and daughters, the fireside priestesses, hallowed, beloved, sacred, sheltered in the holy temple of Home, making a quiet, peaceful spot of cheer and comfort in a great troubled world. We must show them that woman’s sphere is in making a home, woman’s ideal is to love and be loved. How shall we do this, what authority shall we quote, what text book or tract shall we place in their hands? Thank God, we have one which speaks very definitely, clearly. with no uncertain sound, which inculcates from cover to cover every soundest principle for the guidance of women and .also, thank God, there are thousands of native Christian women who are reading and eagerly studying this book, and teaching their neighbors. The Bible is Korea’s hope as the hope of the world, in the question of what is to become of woman.

The second important misconception in this women’s prospectus which also is fatally wide spread, and not among Koreans only, is in regard to the nature of true progress, liberty, and civilization.

The fundamental error of most of the anarchists, socialists and other revolutionary societies is that enunciated in the paper before us, that liberty consists in the power “to do and say whatever one likes.” From tyranny and oppression the mind swings back across the arc to license; and tyranny of a new kind, and a terrible, begins. The hydra-headed supplants the one man power. They must be taught what true liberty is and on what it rests, by looking into the True Law of Liberty.

Again, one would judge from laws recently enacted by both our people and their usurpers, and the changes on which they seem to lay most stress, that progress consists [57] largely in altering the cut and color of a man’s coat and the length of his hair. Civilization, one would think, was a matter of tramways, wide streets, gunboats, well drilled armies, factories, arts, luxuries, hideous European clothes, etc. Most Eastern countries, Turkey, India, Japan, China, Egypt, even Korea, have all or many or some of these things, but even where they are most, one feels that something is wanting. It is Hamlet, but Hamlet is left out. It is as like true civilization, as a gramophone is like the true voice of your friend. There is a hollow brassy ring about it. It does not come from a warm living heart, but is only a poor caricature out of an empty shell.

True civilization is not a veneer; it is the solid ringed growth of centuries, rooted in the earth, reaching its leaves and blossoms unto Heaven. Some of its outgrowths are the things these people copy so marvelously in paper and wax, that even we can scarcely tell the difference.

At a great fete given in an Eastern city, they built out of boards and canvas a grand old forest monarch, they painted it with wonderful skill, and covered it with paper leaves and blossoms. It was a marvel of art, a beautiful tree whereat the world stood open mouthed for a day, but the rain descended and the floods came, and the wind blew and beat upon the tree, and it fell, for it had no roots.

I have been hunting the dictionaries for a definition of this later, nobler—higher civilization—and have, among many, found only two that come at all near it; First;--”The humanization of man in society; the satisfaction for him in society of the true law of human nature.” Second; -- “The lifting up of men mentally, morally, and socially,”

This never was, never will be done, by tramways and new clothes, it can never be brought about by armies and men of war, it will not follow in the train of art, and of luxuries tho’ they follow it. Men may be well dressed, well informed (for we all know true education does not consist in the attainment of mere knowledge), and after all be no better than the ‘manufactured tree, [58] without the vital principle of life, that is in Christianity, to lift them up “mentally, morally and socially,” above the material and sensual, and hold them there, unshakenly rooted in the rock.

All that is best in Western civilization. the motor power that stirs the energies of men, and brings out the choicest results is Christian faith and love—Christian principle.

“The true law of human nature” is growth in the sunshine of mutual faith and love.

The children of the Covenanters, the Puritans, the Huguenots, the Waldenses, the Pilgrim. Fathers, the martyrs, have infused new life into the world’s old effete civilizations and the principles implanted, the spirit breathed, has made, is making, a new civilization, for the choice things of which, heathenism has often not even a word by which they can be expressed. Test them by their definition of such words, as God, Heaven, Home, Love, Faith, Hope, or Sin. Take the evidence of their great poets and writers on such terms as these, and where do they stand ? 

Unless their ideals are ennobled and purified, they can never rise beyond a certain limit, never gain more than a varnish, never send a root down to the rock.

Therefore to-day Korean statesmen are saying that in Christianity is found the only hope for Korea’s national salvation, the one key to unlock the door to freedom and greatness.

And, therefore, in view of the deeply rooted and far reaching misconceptions, of which the women’s rights society’s little document was only one obscure example, must we the more zealously teach the people to study the Bible and practice its precepts. Then we shall indeed have a new Korean people, happier, enlightened, civilized, not indeed with the superficial veneer of civilization which is satisfied with imitating the unessential and the effeminating results of the true, but the real, the Christian civilization, which begins from within in a new life in the heart of the people. A life whose motive [59] power is unselfish love, which works out in fair blossoms and sound fruit of “nobler modes of life, sweeter manners, purer laws”:

“And they no longer half akin to brute,

For all we thought and loved and did;

And hoped and suffered, is but seed

Of what in them is flower and fruit.’’



Korean Conundrums.


In last year’s March number of the Korea Review was printed an article on Korean Conundrums by the writer. Herewith is submitted another lot, with the hope that they will not be unprofitable to those who are interested in things pertaining to Korean life and thought.                                 .. ,


[For the Korean text see the PDF file]

What kind of a “teul” (frame) will not weave linen?

A “non-teul” (rice plain).


[For the Korean text see the PDF file]

What is it that wears a cangue day and night? The Korean lamp stand. These are the wooden frames which support the lights, which the Koreans use at night. An upright piece is supported by a base, while near the top it pierces .and supports a transverse section, somewhat in the same manner as a cangue is supported by a criminal.


[For the Korean text see the PDF file]

What is it that both eats and vents with the mouth?

A bag.


[For the Korean text see the PDF file]

What has but one leg?  A hinge. This is a peculiar shaped iron used to fasten doors.


[For the Korean text see the PDF file]

What is it that on going out beats a new tom-tom and on coming in beats a drum? A water-pot—as used by the Korean women who carry them on their heads. [60] On going out for water the gourd dipper in the empty vessel beats one kind of a noise, and when returning the dipper floats on top of the water and striking against the sides of the vessel beats another kind of a noise.


[For the Korean text see the PDF file]

What are twelve things lying on one pillow? Rafters.

In Korean houses there are about twelve rafters in each “Kan” supported on one cross beam.


[For the Korean text see the PDF file]

What requires two days to see one day’s sight? A one-eyed man.


[For the Korean text see the PDF file]

What is it that strips off its skin in cold water? An avalanche or land-slide.

The heavy fall of rain -in the wet-season causes landslides on the mountain sides. 


[For the Korean text see the PDF file]

What kind of clothing cannot be worn? Rock clothing, the moss that covers the rocks being so called.


[For the Korean text see the PDF file]

What is it that is carried under the arm when going out and on the head when coming in?. Water-pot.


[For the Korean text see the PDF file]

What is a flower blossoming on dead wood ? The lamp stand.          

The Koreans call the flame of a lamp a “fire-flower.”


[For the Korean text see the PDF file]

What kind of “chang” (bran sauce) cannot be eaten? A “song-chang’” (a corpse).


[For the Korean text see the PDF file]

What is it that burns its mouth morning and night but never gets anything to eat? A poker.

The Koreans generally use wooden pokers.


[For the Korean text see the PDF file]

What is a white stone embedded beyond three elevations ? The finger-nail.

The three passes are the three joints of the finger beyond which is the nail.


[61] [For the Korean text see the PDF file]

What is it that is a handful in warm weather but an armful in cold weather? A cane.

When warm the cane is carried in the hand, but when cold it is carried in the folded arms; the Korean thus folding his arms in order to keep his hands warm by inserting each in the opposite long open sleeve,


[For the Korean text see the PDF file]

What is it that wears a green apron when young and a red one when old ? Pepper.     


[For the Korean text see the PDF file]

What is it that has four legs and four wings and yet can neither walk nor fly? A watch-tent in a melon patch.

Every farmer who raises melons builds a booth in the midst of his melon field where he sits guarding over his crop. It is built high off the ground, resting on four legs. The sides are made of mats which hinge at the top and are raised or lowered at pleasure. The swinging sides are the “wings.”


[For the Korean text see the PDF file]

What is it whose front is like its back, its back like its front; its right hand like its left, and its left like its right? The Korean comb.

The Korean comb is double, having teeth on both sides.


[For the Korean text see the PDF file]

What is it that has its stomach behind and its back in front? The “calf” of the leg.


[For the Korean text see the PDF file]

What is it that stands with its hair disheveled in the field? Corn.

The silk of the corn protruding from the end of the ear is compared with a Korean with his long hair disheveled. 


[For the Korean text see the PDF file]

[62] What is it that goes in a wooden door, comes out an iron door, takes a hot bath, then a cold bath. and then goes to sleep on a reed mat? Cooksoo” (Vermicelli]. This is a favorite dish with Koreans. It is made out of buckwheat and is pressed through a sieve-like arrangement in a hole in a wooden beam. The upper part of the hole is of wood (the wooden door) and the lower of iron (the iron door). It comes out in long strings, and falls into a hot bath. Then it is placed in cold water and finally is piled up on a reed mat, whence it is served to the customer in a bowl.


[For the Korean text see the PDF file]

What is like a golden brand in an azure field? A star.


[For the Korean text see the PDF file]

What is a thread snake in a small pond ? A wick.

The Korean wick is a long thread-like affair. The pond is the oil-vessel.


[For the Korean text see the PDF file]

What is a red silk purse that contains hundreds of gold coins? A red pepper.


[For the Korean text see the PDF file]

What is it that carries a load day and night? A shelf.


[For the Korean text see the PDF file]

What is like a big kettle without a cover? A well.


[For the Korean text see the PDF file]

What is it that wears a green apron and stands upside down? An evergreen tree.


[For the Korean text see the PDF file]

What is a golden cushion under water? The sun.



Severance Hospital.


This institution, which was opened in its new buildings in September 1904, has been carrying on its beneficent work without interruption ever since. Other institutions may close their doors at certain seasons but a general hospital must go on under all circumstances.

The seventeen months that have elapsed have proven [63] the great need of this hospital in its present form. 16,000 patients have been treated in the daily dispensary clinic and 490 have been admitted to the wards, while a large number of visits to homes have been made by the physicians and their assistants. A considerable number of persons other than Koreans have patronized the wards of the hospital, the list including American, English, French, Japanese, and Chinese, and the adaptation of the institution to this use is likely, in the future, to prove one of its most valuable features, more especially as the nursing department is to be strengthened by the addition of trained Japanese nurses, who will serve as head nurses under the direction of an American trained nurse, a sufficiently large staff of Korean women being under the guidance of the above to ensure the thorough care of every patient. Up to this time it has not been thought proper to place Korean women as nurses in the male wards, but the rapid changes in the ideas and customs of the Korean people and more especially the development of Christian principles and practices in such a large number have prepared the way for the introduction of this most desirable feature and many Christian women are now offering themselves for training as nurses, so that it is expected that ere long all the male nurses will have been replaced by women.

Those in charge feel that this will not only mark a new epoch in hospital practice in Korea but will enhance in a most material way the efficiency of the ward work. A definite course of study and training is being laid out for them, and the experience of the physicians lead them to believe that Korean women are capable of becoming very excellent nurses.

Many people ask what kind of cases are treated in the hospital, and while quite unwishful to say anything that would have even the appearance of boasting we feel it only right that the question should be answered. And it can be answered in a general way by saying that practically all kinds of diseases are met with and treated with a measure of success which will compare quite favorably with that attained elsewhere.      

[64] In particular we may give a list of some of the cases which have passed through the wards during the last seventeen months.

Malaria, Typhoid Fever, Typhus Fever, Scarlet Fever, Pneumonia, Small Pox, Whooping Cough, Nephritis (Bright’s disease), Trachoma, Ankylostomiasis, Filaria in the blood, Syphilis, Acute Rheumatism, Dysentery, Diarrhoea. Neurasthenia, Endemic Haemoptysis, Pulmonary Tuberculosis, Tubercular affections of glands, bones and joints, Bronchitis, Pleurisy, Scabies, Erysipelas, Hemiplegia, Paraplegia, Jaundice; Insanity, Delirium Tremens, Noma, Membranous Croup, Paralysis of bladder, Orchitis, Neuralgia, Conjunctivitis, Corneitis, Pysemia, Broncho-Pneumonia, Asthma, Purpura Hemorrhazica, Concussion of Brain, Fracture of Skull, Fracture of Spine, Fracture of leg and arm, Otrtis, Beriberi, Anaemia, Pelvic inflamation, Neuritis, Tonsillitis, etc.

Operations have been performed every day and often many times a day, both minor and major, some of the more important being as follows:

Eye—Cataract, Iridectomy, Extirpation of Eyeball, Pterygium, Entropion and Ectropion.

Ear—Paracentesis of drum, Repair of pinna, Removal of polypi and other tumors.

Nose—Straightening of septum, Removal of polypi, Extirpation of adenoids.

Throat—Amputation of uvula, Extirpation of tonsils.

Abdomen—Ovariotomy, Herniotomy, Extra-uterine pregnancy, Gastrostomy, Hepatic Abscess, Paracentesis.

Amputations—Fingers, hand, arm, toes, foot, leg, thigh.

Excision of bones—Hand, wrist, foot, ankle, hip, jaw, skull, spinal processes, spinal laminae, ribs.

Curetting of bones—Hand, wrist, arm, foot, ankle, leg, hip, pelvis, ribs, sternum, scapula, skull.

Miscellaneous--Removal of tumors, Amputation of breast, Paracentesis of Chest for pleurisy and Empyema, Opening of abscesses, Cutting open of fistulae, Various operations on the uterus and other pelvic organs, Hemorrhoids, etc.

[65] Another very important department of the hospital’s activities is its medical school. Already several young men have had considerable instruction and training both in the foundation branches of Anatomy, Physiology, Chemistry, Bacteriology and Pathology and in the practical side of medical and surgical work, so that all minor operations and some major ones such as amputations, etc., are done by the Korean assistants under the supervision of one of the physicians, and it is expected that within three years or so from now it will be possible to graduate as regular physicians at least three or four of these young men who will he fitted to go out, if they so desire, to make their own way amongst their own people and extend more widely than could otherwise be done the beneficent influence of the hospital.

This is one of the greatest benefits which the hospital can confer on Korea, but it means an amount of labor on the part of the physicians which cannot be easily estimated, because text books in the native language must be prepared and all the teaching given in the native tongue—a performance the difficulty of which can scarcely be conceived by those who have not tried to do it.

However, these difficulties are being overcome and already textbooks have been prepared on Anatomy, Physiology, Chemistry, Materia Medica, and Bacteriology, while others on Pathology, Diagnosis of Disease and kindred topics are underway..                                .             

The financial status will be of interest to many who want to know how the necessarily large expenses of such an institution are met, so we give the following items of expenditure and receipts.



From Ward Patients      1,878.00

 Dispensary             1,011.00

 outside Korean

Practice      85.00

 Sundries           327.00











Y 3,301.00


Food              2,768.00

Fuel               2,218.00

Light              635.00

Furnishing          492.00

Travel              135.00


and nurses  1,049.00

Student Assts.       600.00

Literary Asst.        372 00

Medicines             2,863.00

Repairs                          150.00

Preparation of

Text Books        355.00

Sundries             440.00


Y 12,077.00


Deficit in 17 months  Y 8, 776.00

This has been met as follows:

Receipts from practice of the two physicians

amongst foreign residents            Y 3,414.00

Donations of friends                                 Y 3,260.00

Y 6,674.00


Balance of deficit Y 2,102. 00, accruing during 17 months.

An analysis of. the above financial summary reveals the following facts:     ,             

The expenses of the hospital outside of the salaries of the foreign staff has been 12,017.00 Yen for 17 months, equal to 8,520.00 Yen per year; but the imperative need of improving the nursing staff and the increase of the work amongst Koreans will certainly make the cost during the coming year 10,000 Yen.

Of this sum we may expect to obtain 2,500 Yen from the hospital patients, most of whom are too poor to pay even for the food which is supplied them, so that we may look for a deficit of 7,500 Yen which will be partly covered by special donations and the outside earnings of the physicians. 

As stated above, however, one of the greatest needs of Korea is a medical school where students can be given both theoretical instruction and practical training in the diagnosis and treatment of disease and this can be better done in connection with such a hospital as this than in any other way, so it is proposed to extend the [67] present teaching of a few students and provide further facilities for a thorough course in medicine arid surgery. This will of course mean an increase in expenditure, and so provision should be made for a total income of 15,000 Yen, at least 10,000 of which ought to be definitely provided for by endowment or otherwise.



Report of Bible Committee of Korea for 1905.


Many changes have taken place in the ‘‘Hermit Nation” during the year that has just closed. What was prophesied at the beginning of the year has come to pass, and Japan’s Protectorate over Korea is an accomplished fact, Her foreign policy has been changed. Her own countrymen no longer represent her at the courts of other nations; her ministers have been recalled; the representatives from other Powers to her court have been withdrawn, and the Resident-General, Japan’s representative, is the power behind Korea’s throne.

It is hoped that under the influence and guidance of this aggressive Power, Korea will forge ahead in her national life; that an honest and progressive government will be installed, and that justice shall be meted out to every man, whether he be rich or poor; that offenders against life, property and law shall be punished, whether they be Korean or Japanese. In a word, that injustice, bribery and corruption, that have held sway for ages, in all forms and in all stations of life, shall be replaced by justice, honesty and uprightness.

The past year cannot be called a prosperous one in any respect for the Koreans. Crops have only been fair and in some districts, it is said, they have been a failure. Business in the Capital has been severely hampered by the wretched monetary system, and the financial reform inaugurated last July by the Japanese has failed so far to put the finance of the country on a more settled and satisfactory basis. Merchants have been obliged to close [68] their doors, unable to do business under the “reform” conditions; and on all sides is heard the complaint that things arc worse than ever t:hey were before. It may always be expected that during the introduction of a reform, inconvenience and even hardship may be met, and we trust that the present troubles are only of a transitory character.

The railways are now running from Pusan, in the south, to Weiju, in the north, and in their course, have run through ancestral graves, ruthlessly disturbing or ignoring the guardian spirits, who have faithfu1ly watched over them for long years; they have tunnelled through hills where the dragon . has held undisputed possession for centuries; they have tickled his tail, they have run over his back, and have even ploughed through his stomach to the great horror and dread of the native; who feared lest some terrible calamity would befall them for permitting such a desecration, and the wild barbarians who perpetrated it. As time passed. and the ancestral spirit of the native gave him no trouble, neither did the angry mountain dragon wreak vengeance on him, he began to see that the railways were a boon to the country at large and to the districts through which they passed, in particular. Already the railways are so popular that every train is taxed to its utmost carrying capacity. And now instead of reckoning distance by the number of “pipes of tobacco he can smoke” between two places, the white-coated, straw-sandalled Korean finds that almost before his second pipe is lit, he is at his journey’s end. Instead of measuring time by cock-crow or day-break in the morning; he must now reckon it by the tick of the clock, hanging in the railway station, which indicates to him the departure of the first train, which in ten short hours will have brought him to a point, which only a year ago it would have taken him ten days to reach,.

With the upsetting of hoary superstitions, the introduction of reforms of one kind and another, the cause of Christ has not been put in the back-ground and today there is a turning to the things of the Kingdom such as was not expected by the most sanguine.

[69] In the Spring there was a remarkable awakening in the north and the accessions to the Pyengyang city church alone could not have been less than two thousand. Seoul, the hardened city that it is, has supplied more enquirers than ever before, and some meeting-places have had to be enlarged twice during the year. From the south comes the same glad news, of people turning their attention to divine things, and as I write this, a letter from the Rev. D. M. McRae, of the Canadian Presbyterian Mission, Ham Heung, in the north, on the eastern coast, contains the tidings of a wonderful awakening there. He has been besieged from early morning till late at night with enquirers, and a special series of meetings in which he had the assistance of the Rev. J. L. Gerdine of Wonsan, has been blessed beyond their expectation in bringing souls out of darkness into light and in the quickening of those who already professed the name of Christ.

In the same letter he speaks of the existing conditions in his field of labor and as it seems to me descriptive of the present conditions throughout the whole country, I quote at length:

“The late war has left its effect upon Korea. In the crisis, she finds herself crushed, humbled; and out of her humiliation comes the cry, we have lost our power, our name, our life; we have all become as dead men. The demons have betrayed us, and the spirits of our ancestors where are they? England and America will not come to our assistance. To whom shall we look for life and light? To China? No. We have had her Confucianism and letters for thousands of years and in them there is no hope. Japan offers us her schools, if we pay for them, for the study of her language. From whence did the ‘Cut-your-hair, progressive party’ take its rise? And the ‘Don’t-cut-your-hair, get power, wear-a-medal-and-your-future-is-assured party’ spring from? During the past year those societies have spread throughout this part of the country with the result that the Koreans see in them the embodiment of all their own craft, and falsehood. and they say, all these in character are no better than what we already possess.

“Side by side with these, the colporteurs have been presenting to the people the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and telling them that God will give light to those in darkness, life to the dead and pardon to the vilest sinner, and that [70] the King of kings and Lord of lords invites all that are heavy laden to come unto him and he will forgive and receive them and to those who believe He will give a new heart, a new life, a new name, a new light, a new King and Kingdom, with the result that in the markets, where only a few books could be sold in former years, now it is the colporteurs’ joy to see his sales increase a hundred fold. Daily the hearts of the people are turning Zionward. Several Korean officials have said to me, that the sentiment among their class was now set on the Christian doctrine. They are buying books and much interest is being manifested by them all.”

During the year, the work of the Bible Societies has been fraught with “up and down” experiences, but thank God there have been more “ups” than “downs.” The bitter disappointment over a faulty edition of the Korean New Testament began, and has continued throughout the year, as it has been impossible to replace the edition yet. Never has there been such a cry for the Word of Life in Korea and owing to the circumstances which have made it impossible for us to fully satisfy the demands made upon us, the year’s work has been crippled and less satisfactory than it would otherwise have been.

Then too, in April, the nervous breakdown of the Agent, .Mr. Kenmare, necessitated his return to the home-land, at a time when the work in all its branches needed the benefit of his rare ability and his many years of experience. His friends here and elsewhere will be g1ad to know that he is recovering in health, and their best wishes will follow him wherever his lot many be cast.

The many notes of appreciation of our efforts to do what we could to meet the unprecedented demands have encouraged us many times when the worries and disappointments seemed most, and this, with the assurance that we were doing the best we could and believing in Him who shapes our destinies, we have been carried through the year to its close and can say from the bottom of the heart “Hitherto hath the Lord helped us.” Very humbly do we offer to Him the year’s work as we ask Him to establish all that has been done in the right spirit in His name and to forgive and annul whatever has been amiss .

[71] From the above-mentioned notes let me quote a few sentences:

“We have been grateful for .the unfailing supply of gospels furnished at such a low rate. We find it a great blessing and comfort to be able to furnish these priceless books to all who ask, even though they possess only two chun (1sen, ¼d, ½c). The Bible Societies are not only our friends but the heathen’s hope.”

Another writes thus: “We are surely in a position to thank God from our hearts for consecrated, Spirit-filled native Biblewomeu and colporteurs. Whatever the Bible Societies may mean to others, they are a necessity to us, especially now that Korea is turning to Christ in her time of trouble.”

Another expresses himself: “The Bible Societies in thus sending out men to preach and sell the Word is doing a great work. I know of no other way in which the seed sowing can be done so effectively.”    .             

A missionary who has been identified with the work for years, writes : “I shall never feel thankful enough to the Societies for the way they have aided me in the past.” .

Publication and Issues :--It is a matter: of deep regret that during the year we have been unable to publish an edition of the Korean New Testament. However, work is being pushed on it in Japan at present and the printer is trying to give us the book in less than contract time, and before this report reaches the home-land; we hope to be able to supply the Korean Christian with the much needed revised edition of the New Testament in his own language.                            

During the year we published 90,000 Gospel and Acts but as 3,000 of each were taken and bound is one volume with the title “The Gospels and Acts,” we had only 78,000 volumes.              

The issues have been very heavy compared with former years, the total number being 156,690 volumes, more than twice the number issued last year, and is made up as follows :






and OT’s

New Tests.



































Circulation. This year again, we have to say, that it was impossible to supply colporteurs with all the books they could sell, and there are few of our colporteurs’ sales that have not suffered from the lack of the Korean New Testament. Had it been possible to meet the demand for books our circulation would be much higher than it is. Notwithstanding this unfortunate state of affairs, our circulation shows a marked and healthy growth and has almost doubled that of the previous year,








New Tests


Totals, 1905.

Totals, 1904.

Totals, 1903.

Colportage Sales.














Depot Sales







Free Grants

















This year again, through the kindness of Mr. Parrott of the British Societies, Kobe; we were given the use of. the Japanese colporteur, Mr. Katsumata, who proved so efficient last year. He visited Pusan, Masampo, Taiku, Chemulpo, Seoul and Pyeng Yang. He did good work, but reports that it is much harder to sell to the Japanese in Korea than in Japan, and considers that the majority of the Japanese in Korea in no way represent the Japanese in Japan.

Colportage for the Koreans and by the Koreans has met with signal success during the year and from all sides come the encouraging reports of the blessings that have followed the work of the colporteurs. The increase in their sales is not only the result of the low price of the [73] Scriptures but the changed attitude of the Korean towards these things. Where before there was a stolid indifference to the message of the colporteur and his books there is now a welcome for them both. The Korean is awakening out of the sleep of ages and is buying Christian books as never before. There is a dissatisfaction with the past and the outlook into the future is drear indeed, but with a hungering for better things there is a willingness to, at least, buy the books and investigate the truths therein contained. The colporteur has often found people asking for books where in previous. years they scornfully refused to look at them or listen to his message.

We are glad that the time seems to be here when the colporteur is to meet with more encouragements in his work than he has ever done before. He deserves it. For years he has had hard-up-hill work in every way, and even today his position is by no means a sinecure. He is often obliged to travel in all kinds of weather with his pack of books on his back, forced to eat badly cooked food and sleep in dirty, vermin invested inns. Add to these the scorn of the scornful, the insults of the rough, and the hundreds of annoyances that are put in his way by the thoughtless and careless, and it will be seen that not only must the colporteur be a man with a strong body but with a strong character before he is willing to endure such hardships for Christ’s sake.

(To be continued}. 



Editorial Comment.


An interesting question is started by Mr. Moose in his article, “Are the Koreans Increasing in Numbers?”; and as be says, it is a question to which a categorical answer is not easy of proof.

We regret however, that Mr. Moose was unable to give us any facts in figures to prove his point. He has certainly given us a few facts. that may lead us to agree [74] that no children can survive in Korea; but it is well known that in surroundings where it would be certain death to Occidental children, those of the Orient survive and flourish, The conditions mentioned by Mr. Moose concerning Korean childhood are almost all of them not only duplicated but are apparently in a much aggravated form in the cities and villages in China; and yet it must be acknowledged that the population in China is increasing. There is certainly a very high death rate among the children in Korea, but we must acknowledge also that there is a very high birth rate; and the question is, ‘‘Which is in the excess?” This as yet Mr. Moose has not answered. It is our experience that with the exception of the magisterial towns (which owing to political changes. and dismissal of great numbers of unnecessary officials, have suffered considerably), in general the villages, towns and market places have been increasing in size, an almost certain sign of increase in population.

We certainly trust that Mr. Moose will continue his investigations, and in a subsequent number will provide us with facts and. figures, though we feel that further investigation may persuade him, despite the array of probabilities so interestingly set forth by him, that the Koreans are increasing in population.




We are glad to know that Mr. Sidehara, Adviser in the Educational Department, has brought back some capable assistants with him from Japan; and we trust that this means a vigorous pushing of a more general education for the whole of Korea.

Mr. Geo. Kennan is entirely mistaken in his statement concerning the few schools in Korea for, from personal observations, we know that there are schools in almost every village in the land. Mr. Kennan when here made his inquiries of the Educational Department, and took their figures which recorded the small number of schools which had been started in the interior by the Government, and inquiring no further he failed to learn of the tens of thousands of private schools throughout the land .

[75] If the object of schools is, as has been well said, “The training of men so that they may be fitted to acquire knowledge,” certainly the mental drill that is acquired in the study of the Chinese classics in the Korean schools must not be ignored.

Koreans who have gone to schools in China, Japan, America and England and other countries have in every way held their own, and have shown ability and aptitude for the acquirement of knowledge that has been phenomenal.

Before Mr. Sidehara left here on his trip to Japan, it was rumored that he was planning for a system of education similar to that which Japan was giving the Loochoo Islanders. This however we cannot credit, as we believe that Mr. Sidehara has been in Korea too long to underestimate the ability. of the people among whom he is working, and we certainly trust that he will see to it that such a system is planned for Korea as will speedily give her her true standing among the nations of the world, Thousands of young men with the mental drill from constant study of the Chinese classics are ready to enter normal schools, and within a few years could be equipped for teachers for primary schools throughout the land. These at the start with a good middle school in each of the provincial centres and a first class university in Seoul is the very least that can he planned for at the present.




In this issue we have been able to give a few of the items that illustrate Korean New Year’s Folklore. While many of the doings may seem foolish to Westerners, they have a hold upon the people in much the same way as similar things have upon people of more enlightened countries. While the present condition of education in Korea has as yet failed to clear up many of their superstitions, it will hardly behoove foreigners, who will not start on a journey on Friday, will not walk under a ladder, will tap wood to avoid misfortunes, and hang horse shoes over the door to bring good luck, to ridicule their Eastern neighbors.

[76] The article in question gives another glimpse in the life and habits of thought of this interesting people. and therefore finds a place in our columns, and will be welcomed by our readers.




For a similar reason we are glad to be able to present in this issue another collection of Korean conundrums. It has been prepared by Mr. Bernheisel of Pyeng Yang. It will be extremely interesting to all who understand Korean, but it is to be regretted that so many tum upon the similar sound of Korean words. Humor of a nation and people is well worth study, and it is hard for the people of one nation to always appreciate a humor of another. Not a few of Mark Twain’s best jokes lose almost all point when translated into Korean, and in fact have absolutely nothing left when done into Chinese. In a similar way the Korean conundrums given here will appeal more strongly to those who understand both Korean and English.

We regret exceedingly that the article could not have been made of a more general interest, but this was hardly a reason for withholding it.

We are also glad to be able in this issue to give to our readers a statement of what is being done for the Koreans by the Westerners.

We have been fortunate in securing the Annual Report of the Agent of the Bible Society. Mr., Hugh Miller, perusal of which will show that a large number of the Koreans are reading the Bible, and that the Book of books is being widely circulated in this land. An extremely gratifying fact of the same is that, the people themselves are paying for the books they get; not simply a nominal sum which would represent a bare moiety of the cost of the book, but a little more than the actual cost of the book.

Dr. Avison’s report of the Severance Hospital will be of interest to all our readers, and show a little of what foreign medicine and surgery are doing for this [77] people. A careful study of the report will at once show several problems that confront Western physicians in this land, and with Mr. Moose’ article showing the need, all our readers will be glad to read Dr. Avison’s report as an illustration of what is now being done in many places in Korea by Dr. Weir in Chemulpo, Dr. Irvin in Pusan, Dr. Wells in Pyeng Yang, Dr. Sharrocks in Syen Chun, where hospitals are running; and in many other places where, without the help of a foreign hospital, Western physicians are striving to alleviate suffering.



News Calendar.


The renowned scholar Mr. Song Biung Soon committed suicide at his residence in Ok Hah, North Chung Chong Province.  He claimed to have been driven to this, because when be desired to memorialize the Emperor about the recent treaty he was driven away from the Palace by the Japanese gendarmes. This Mr. Song was one of the chief scholars among the Korean Confucianists and was a direct descendant of Song Si Ryull, the famous minister and celebrated scholar during the reign of Sook Jong.  

Mr. Tsurubara, the Vice-Resident-General, and party arrived in Seoul on the 30th of January. On the first of February, the office of the Resident-General was opened in the building lately occupied by the Foreign Office and the new Diplomatic Bureau was removed to the old Korean Imperial Cabinet House in front of the old palace.

The Minister of the Law Department Mr. Yi Ha Young has secured the assistance of A. Nozawa, LLD., for the purpose of revising and codifying the laws of Korea.

The Educational Department has engaged fifteen more Japanese teachers for the primary (native) schools in Seoul.

There was recently some talk of appointing a Japanese Adviser to the Department of Agriculture, Commerce and Industry but it has now been decided that these affairs shall be directly controlled from the office of the Resident-General.

It is stated that the Japanese living in Chinnampo are at the present time buying land between Pyeng Yang and Chinnampo along which they expect to build a branch railway to that port.

The Department of Finance has lately imported Yen 5000 worth of copper sen.

The Japanese Government will in a few days lay two proposals before the Diet. One is for the purchase of the Seoul-Fusan Railway and the other is for the amalgamation of all the railways in Korea. The [78] cost of purchasing the Seoul-Pusan Railway is estimated at about Y 30, 000,000, including Y 15,000,000 capital of the Company; and Y 10,000,000, advanced by the Government from special funds.

It is reported from Gensan that as the water in the neighborhood of Ham-heung is of bad quality the Japanese garrison will be withdrawn from that place toward Gensan.

Mr. and Mrs. Hewlett arrived in Seoul at the British Legation on January the 25th inst to the delight of the whole foreign community, who have already learned to value Mr. Hewlett’s genial qualities.

The foreign children who had been at school at Chefoo spent two months holidays in Seoul, every body combining to make the time pass pleasantly. On their return a short time since, their number was augmented by one, Bowling Reynolds. Korea now possesses quite an interest in these Chefoo schools with six of our missionaries’ boys there.

News arrived on March 4th of the birth of a daughter to Mr. and Mrs. Harold Porter on February 27th.

Mrs. Dr. Scranton is soon leaving for Switzerland where she is taking her little daughter to be educated. We are glad to learn that Mrs. Scranton plans to return in a few months.

Mr. and Mrs. Edgar Le Mot Stryker announced to their friends the birth of a son, Peter Van Zant, on January the 22nd 1900 at the American mines.

Dr. D. E. Hahn , an American dentist of long practice and high standing, arrived in Seoul January the 18th. Dr. Hahn has received an enthusiastic welcome from the foreign residents who hope that be will long continue to make this his home.

Mr. and Mrs. Hugh Miller announced the birth of their son William Ralph on January the 12th.

The Chosen Nichi Nichi published a report that the Japanese government has decided to build a light .railway connecting Songchin with Hesanjin. This latter place is in the (Pook-kwando). This is the district over which the Chinese and Korean governments have had in the past so many disputes as to boundaries. The railway will run via Kilchow and Kapsan and will, it is said, pass through very thickly wooded country. In this connection the correspondent makes the astounding assertion that as soon as the spring comes and the snow melts one thousand Japanese wood-cutters will be imported into this district and that the enterprise is expected to be a very profitable one.

Until now the Korean policeman has only been paid 3½ yen monthly so that he could hardly be expected to maintain an attitude of undeviating rectitude. With the increase of his salary to 9 yen per month and a corresponding increase in the yearly bonus, matters should improve.

It is pretty generally suspected that the beggar children of Seoul make a good thing out of their profession and the following confirms the suspicion. Two philanthropists, Messrs. Pai Tong-hun and Son Euisan have reported to the police that a1thougb they established a free school and lodging house for juvenile beggars, the youngsters invariably [79 ] run away after a day or two and the police are therefore asked to bring all male mendicants between the ages of 8 and 14 to the asylum which has been provided for them.

The Japanese census returns for December give the following particulars of Japanese residents in Pyeng-Yang.

             Male ..... 1283   Female ..... 1781             Houses .... 539

The extraordinary preponderance of female “emigrants” is noteworthy,

A belated report from South Chulla Province. says that a mob, headed by some minor officials, attacked the local office of the Il-chin-hoi with the result that several people were seriously wounded and a great deal of property destroyed                         

The Il-chin-hoi people are at least energetic. They are now about to start a school for Korean ladies. Henceforth each member of the Il-chin-hoi will receive a salary of 50 sen per day.

The Japanese have a funny way of asking for Korean decorations. The Educational Department received an official letter from the Japanese Minister asking that the teachers and officers of the Tokio Middle School should be decorated in recognition of their work in educating Korean young men.

Mr. Sidehara, the Educational Adviser, accompanied by his father, arrived in Seoul on the evening of the 18th inst.

A farewell reception was given by the Belgian Consul-General in honour of Mr. Hayashi, on the 17th inst. at which the Foreign Representatives, General Aasegawa, Viscount Hamagata, and many other officials were present

General Yi Keun Tak who was attacked by assassins and wounded very severely, for having been one of the parties that effected the new treaty, has been in the Han Sung Hospital for sometime, and it is said that he is recovering very rapidly, and will soon be out.

From now on all passports demanded either by Koreans who wish to leave their country, or by foreigners for the purpose of travelling in the interior of Korea, will be issued at the office of the Resident General instead of at the Korean Foreign Office as heretofore.

General Yi Choong Koo, the former Commissioner of Police, and others who have been in banishment in the islands south of Chulla province, have lately been released by a special edict from  His Majesty. It is also said that the former Minister of Foreign Affairs, Kim Yun Sic and Hon Kim Kiung Ha and others will also soon be released.

On the evening of the 22nd inst a social gathering was held at the Seoul Union Reading Rooms. Owing to the inclement weather the attendance was not large, but the assembled company nevertheless spent a very pleasant evening, enlivened by music, singing, recitations, and charades. Several of the ladies were in 18th century costume, the effect of which was extremely pretty. Refreshments were dispensed by Mts. Scranton, and the company broke up about 10.30 after singing the “Star Spangled Banner. -Seoul Press.

[80] London telegrams received in Japan announce that the new Liberal newspaper, the Tribune, has published a telegram forwarded from Chefoo by its specia1 correspondent, Mr. Douglas Story; in which Mr. Story says that he has the written authority of the Emperor of Korea to publicly deny the authenticity of the “Treaty” of November 17-18th and to assert that His Majesty has not consented to the establishment of a Residency-General or the removal of Korean diplomatic affairs to Japan.

The Japanese newspaper said that her government desires to abolish the export taxes in Korea. Korea’s export trade has been yearly prevented from expanding as much as it might, by these taxes. Their abolition will benefit Korea as well as Japan, for Korea’s exports are chiefly to Japan. The Korean government’s receipts from the export taxes represent quite insignificant sums, as shown by the following table:



1900 yen 384,525

1901 yen 387,181

1902 yen 554,969

1903 yen 413,215.

1904 yen 292,010.


The Japanese steamer Taianmaru reports having discovered a round black mechanical mine on the high seas about 40 miles from Clifford Island.

Mr. Pak Won-Kio, prefect of Whang Ju has sent in a report to the Home Department complaining that all the official buildings have been occupied by Japanese and that he also has been. ejected from his quarters and was forced to repair a small broken-down shanty and use it as his dwelling house as well as his office. He further states that all his subordinates are now without any kind of accommodation whatsoever and winds up by requesting that a sum of yen 3775.80 be sent him so as to enable him to defray the expenses be has incurred in building up his new quarters.

We have been informed that rather serious trouble took place at Koksan, Whanghai Province, just before the Korean new year. It appears that certain Japanese military officials demanded coolies from the magistrate of the district who said he was unable to procure the required number owing to the near approach of the new year. A Japanese without warning drew his sword and struck the magistrate across the shoulder with it. The servants in attendance on the magistrate at once pounced upon the Japanese and a general fight ensued the result of which was that several parties on both sides were killed and wounded. It was only when the Japanese were reinforced from Pyeng Yang that peace was restored.

Mr. Hayashi left Seoul for Japan about the 20th of February.

From 1st day of February General Hasegawa has been acting Resident-General until such time as Marquis Ito arrives in Seoul.

Mr. Hayashi has been appointed Minister to Peking to take the place of Mr. Uchita who has we believe been appointed Minister at Vienna.


No. 3 (March)

At Kija’s Grave   81

American Enterprise in Korea  83

Shintoism   87

The King's Property  94

Missionary Work of the General Council  99

Report of Bible Committee of Korea For 1905   101

Editorial Comment  110

News Calendar  116




MARCH, 1906



At Kija’s Grave.


Where solemn pine trees stately stand, upon a hill top fair,

O’er looking far the fruitful land, old Kija sleepeth there.

He calmly sleeps, nor dreams of ill, beneath his grassy tent,

Nor wots his Kingdom slips away, its days of glory spent.

The invader tramples o’er his fields and fells his fairest trees,

They snatch the sceptre from his throne from over alien seas,

His people ‘neath the foreign yoke, lift hopeless hands of prayer,

Their idol altars vainly smoke, with none to see or care.

Above him sings the oriole; the sunlight filters down,

He little recks of world control, or mourns his ancient crown.

He dreams of other things then these upon his hilltop fair;

[82] He waits on vast eternities, in awed expectance there.

The spirits of their worshipped sires know not the nation’s woe, 

Her prayers, her groans, her altar fires, unrecked, unanswered go.

They cry for a deliverer, and is there none to bless?

Their ancient heroes all are dead: they cannot bring redress.

Where tall old pine trees stately stand, old Kija sleepeth still,

Nor shall awake to save the land, or cross the oppressor’ s will.

Yet One there is Who marks it all, Who hears the people’s cry.

Yea, not the veriest sparrow’s fall escapes that watchful eye.

He waits to bless the feeble folk, to heal the wounded soul,

To lighten every bondsman’s yoke, and make the stricken whole.     

No cry escapes his loving ear; no grief he doth not heed,

He notes the fall of every tear, and feels the sufferer’s need,

For, over all the wrong, we know He sits and rules above,

And works through all our strife and woe, his purposes of love.



Kija was originally a Minister of the wicked Emperor Kuljoo, the Nero of Ancient China, and the last ruler of the Sang Dynasty.

Being desirous to deliver his countrymen from the tyrant and cruel ruler, he gave valuable assistance in dethroning the latter.

Emperor Moo of the Joo Dynasty, who succeeded to the throne by overthrowing the wicked king, was reorganizing [83] the Government, and in recognition of the valuable service rendered, he offered to General Kija a seat in the Cabinet. However, Kija firmly refused the honored position, in the belief that “no true patriot should serve two kings.”

In consequence, Emperor Moo told Kija that he could come over to Korea, and there have his own dominion to rule. This latter offer he accepted, and with five thousand of his followers came to this land, and founded the Kija Dynasty which reigned for a thousand years.

The Kija Dynasty was the second that ruled the people of the Land of the Morning Calm, and Kija’s reign began about the year 1232 B. C. Moreover, Kija is looked upon by the people of this land as the founder of Historical Korea.

His tomb is near Pyeng Yang City, on a hill covered with old pine trees and overlooks a large tract of the surrounding country.

It was at this place that the preceding lines were suggested, the sunny calm and peace on the beautiful hilltop seeming to the writer to bring out by contrast very vividly the distracted and unhappy condition of the land over which he once ruled and over which his guardian spirit is still supposed to watch. –Ed.



American Enterprise in Korea.


In a recent number, under this head, there were a few pages about the Oriental Consolidated Mining Company and its lucrative concession in northern Korea.

This paper has to do with the firm of Collbran and Bostwick, which until recently was an American enterprise but has been reorganized and is now participated in by capitalists of England and Japan tho the company is incorporated in the U. S. A.

Collbran and Bostwick introduced themselves first to Korea in a large way in building the Seoul-Chemulpo railway. After this came the Electric-railway in Seoul and it was opened in 1899. It was one of the very first electric railways in the Orient and by its success attracted other like ventures in other places in Asia.

             [84] In connection with the street car company is the electric light interests which now furnish 55,000 candle power throughout the city. It is one company and the Korean Emperor is half owner. There are over ten miles of track including the branches to the Imperial Tombs and to Yong San. The latter is a passenger and freight line and does considerable freight business.

Half a million yen in new bonds have recently been issued and the money is to be used in making more tracks, building a new power station at Yong San, and providing more power for electric lighting.

The railway and electric company has had the vicissitudes incident to Asia, but it is appreciated by the Koreans now as the increasing business of the company attest. A company which provides light and transportation, however large their profits may be, are public benefactors. When to these essentials are added the proposed water works giving the city a fine and sufficient supply of good water the least that a grateful government ought to do would be to decorate the men who do it with the highest orders of merit given by the Government.

There is no more philanthropic and praiseworthy venture than providing pure water for a large city. Those who study hygiene and are acquainted with the facts of Hamburg, Portland, Oregon, Chicago and other places and on the wrong side, with Philadelphia, Pittsburg, and so forth, will have to admit that between a hospital and a system of water works for a municipality the water works are times and times over, the more beneficial. Not that missionary societies should furnish or instigate water works but no one will deny that the most loving expression of missionary enterprise is the branch which has to do with. hygiene—in raising the standard of living, in ministering to the sick, the sorrowing and the very poor. And because this firm is engaged in this worthy enterprise I gladly write this meed of praise.

The water will be taken from the Han River near the village of Duke Sum. The river at this point has a width of about 1,300 feet and a depth of eight feet at the low water stage.

[85] With the exception of the rainy season when the river is in flood, the water is perfectly clear and contains almost no sediment. Analysis of the water shows it to be a safe drinking water.

There are no large towns on the river above Seoul, which drain into the river, so that it is practically uncontaminated by sewage.

ln order to be absolutely certain as to the safety of using the water for domestic purposes during times of epidemic and to clarify the water during the rainy season, a system of settling basins and English sand filters will be installed.

The water will first be raised by centrifugal pumps to two concrete settling basins 158 ft. square and 10 ft. deep. All the heavier particles in suspension will be deposited in these basins. The water will flow by gravity to the sand filters where it is made perfectly pure and practically all bacteria and sediment removed. There are to be five concrete filter beds, each 70.ft. by 116 ft., four being in use constantly while the plant is working at full capacity and one spare basin for cleaning purposes.

After being purified the water will flow by gravity to the clear water basin, 64 ft. sq. by 10 ft. deep. Both the filters and the clear water basin are to be protected from freezing and contamination by reinforced concrete arches covered with earth.

The high duty pumping engines then raise the water through 20 inch steel main pipe to the. service reservoir. This reservoir will be of concrete with a capacity of 1,200, 000 U.S. gallons. It will act as an equalizer, storing the excess of water raised by the pumps when the consumption in the city is below the average and assisting the pumps when the consumption is above the average. The pumps are thus enabled to run at a constant velocity throughout the day.

The water is then to be delivered from the service reservoir to the distribution system through a 20 inch steel pipe. The length of this 20 inch pipe is from the Pumping Station to the city, nearly 4 miles.

The water is to be distributed throughout the city [86] by a network of pipe varying from 16 inch to 3 inch in diameter. The 16 inch pipe is of steel but all the smaller sizes of cast iron. There is a total length of about forty miles of pipe line.

Fire hydrants will be located at convenient and desirable places throughout the city. Service hydrants for domestic supply will be located from 100 to 300 feet apart along the pipe lines.

House connections will also be laid for the convenience of those who wish water in their own house or compound, the water being sold by meter measurement.

The capacity of the plant is to be 3,000,000 U. S. gallons per 24 hours. The arrangement is such however that it can easily be enlarged whenever the necessity arises.

The works are expected to be in operation sometime during the latter part of 1907. Are being constructed by Messrs. Collbran & Bostwick, under charge of Mr. B. C. Donham, Chief Engineer.

Another important line of business which the Collbran & Bostwick Company are working is Mining. With Mr. A. B. Wallace. an expert cyanide chemist and assayist in charge of the laboratory at Seoul they are prepared to examine and give opinions on any kind of ore.

The Collbran & Bostwick Development Company as agents and part owners of the new English Mining Concession at Suan are already in mining. The General Manager of this Concession is Mr. Andre P. Griffiths. Mr. Arthur H. Collbran is in charge at the mines, and development work is steadily going forward.

The Company have lately opened a copper mine of great value in Siberia and other prospects are in view.

One of their assistants in the Mining Dept. is Mr. W. W. Taylor, one of the most practical miners in Korea. His father was one of the pioneers of mining in California and has had to do with most of the great successes like the Treadwell in Alaska and noted South American mines. The son has inherited the father’s mining ability and so makes a valuable addition to the mining force of the firm.

[87] With the tripodal influence the firm wields with its personnel composed of Mr. H. Collbran, Mr. H. R. Bostwick, Mr. E. A. Elliott and Mr. Heiichiro Maki, and Mr. S. L. Selden; with the capital ensured by this combination it is seen that they can undertake and carry out big things.

While this is a tripodal company in its personnel it is incorporated under the laws of Conn., U.S.A., and so comes under the head of American enterprises.




Shintoism. (A REVIEW)*


*SHINTO (The Way of the Gods); By W. G. Aston, C.M.G. D. Lit. Author of “A Grammar of the Japanese Spoken Language,” “A Grammar of the Japanese Written Language,” “The Nihongi” (translation), “A History of Japanese Literature,” etc.

Longman. Green & Co. London, England. 6 shillings net.


The study of Shintoism, “the old Kami cult of Japan” is fascinating in the extreme and up to the present has been tantalizing for while the student found most tempting vistas on all sides and every added discovery only tended to whet his appetite for more, so little had been collated and arranged systematically, so much of this little was as yet only to be had in Japanese that most foreigners who could be called Japanese scholars soon gave the task up as hopeless and to those who were striving to arrive at the knowledge without the medium of the Japanese language it was an impossibility.

To represent Japanese Shintoism to the western world, therefore, a man of peculiar gifts was needed. He must be a thorough student of the Japanese language; not simply of the common everyday spoken language but one thoroughly acquainted with all the intricacies and neat distinctions of their more difficult book language. He must be a man of indefatigable energy. who knows no impossibilities, who stops at no difficulties, but who once [88] started on a course plods steadily onward, overcoming all obstacles until his end is attained. Still further he must be a man who by intimate acquaintance knows Japan and the Japanese, who has been long enough with them to be able to appreciate their point of view and able when necessity arises to put himself in their place. Just such a man was found in Hon. W. G. Aston, C.M.G., D. Litt. who was for years a member of the British Consular Service in Japan and at one time the British representative in Seoul.

China. Korea and Japan are so closely knit together and have for centuries had so many things in common that we might naturally be led to expect that such a system of “nature-worship,” as Mr. Aston concedes Shintoism to be, might find many points of contact in the beliefs of Korea and China, and such doubtless is the case, but the student in either of these two countries when he takes up Mr. Aston’s book finds one cause of great disappointment which makes a comparison very difficult if not, as far as this book in its present form is concerned, almost impossible. The names of the various deities and myths and the terms used are all given in the pure Japanese without the accompanying equivalent Chinese ideograph. These would almost invariably be present in a native book and are seen in almost all the pictorial reproductions that illustrate the present volume, and it is certainly to be hoped that Mr. Aston will be able to make the additions in subsequent editions. As it is, for comparative purposes, the work does not come up to one’s expectations.

All the more will this omission be felt by the students in Korea as they read this book and see how Mr. Aston upholds his contention as to the intimate relations between Japan and Korea. As one proceeds however one is soon forced to forget this and become absorbed in the book. Mr. Aston has almost nothing but dry bones to begin with and yet he has given us a book that is as interesting as the best written works on the Mythology of Greece and Rome.

[89] Referring to the influence or’ Korea he says:

Ethnologists are agreed that the predominant element of the Japanese race came to Japan by way of Korea, probably by a succession of immigrations which extended over many centuries. It is useless to speculate as to what rudiments of religious belief the ancestors of the Japanese race may have brought with them from their continental home. Sun-worship has long been a central feature of Tartar religions, as it is of Shinto; but such a coincidence proves nothing, as this cult is universal among nations in the barbaric stage of civilization. It is impossible to say whether or not an acquaintance with the old State religion of China—essentially a nature-worship—had an influence on the prehistoric development of Shinto. The circumstance that the Sun is the chief deity of the latter and Heaven of the former is adverse to the supposition,

There are definite traces of a Korean element in Shinto. A Kara no Kami (God of Kara in Korea) was worshipped in the Imperial Palace. There were numerous shrines in honour of Kara-Kuni Ida te no Kami. Susa no wo and Futsunushi have Korean associations.

This is sufficient to make every student of Korea and Koreans desire to study the book carefully but at the very start he is greatly hampered in his desire for exactness in his comparisons by the absence of the Chinese equivalents as has been mentioned above. The fact that the followers of what has been termed “Korea’s Shamanism” call their religion quite commonly “Shinto” adds not a little to the interest but we see at once that the Shintoism of Korea has not been developed as far as that of Japan and has no order of priesthood and that the various shrines and temples are as a rule independent of each other. As far as we have been able thus far to ascertain there seems to be no system in Korea’s Shintoism and the Sun does not stand out as the chief deity for it seems to some that there is no recognised chief deity at all. The question then naturally arises, Are the forms of Shintoism found in Japan and Korea related, or are the points of similarity simply due to the fact that both forms are essentially nature worship?

In seeking an answer to these questions let us note one or two important facts. [90] First we must not forget that Buddhism was introduced into Korea about the middle of the fourth century, found a good soil for the propagation of its tenets, and was soon established and flourishing, at least in the southwest part of Korea ..

Second we must bear in mind that Buddhism did not reach Japan till two centuries later and that it was almost another half century before it secured a hold upon the life and habits of the people.

Thirdly we note that Mr. Aston in his last chapter on the “Decay of Shinto” ascribes it largely to the entrance. of Buddhism. Continuing he says

When Buddhism, after Christianity the great religion of the world, had once gained a foothold in Japan, its ultimate victory was certain. There was nothing in Shinto which could rival in attraction the sculpture, architecture, painting, costumes, and ritual of the foreign faith. Its organization was more complete and effective.           

At first the two religions held aloof from one another. But while Buddhism flourished more and more, Shinto was gradual1y weakened by the diversion into another channel of material resources and religious thought which might otherwise have been bestowed upon itself.

Other minor reasons also are acknowledged to have existed but this is the main reason offered by Mr. Aston. In view then of these facts in connection with the statement in our first quotation from Mr. Aston’s book are we not justified in assuming that Korean “Shamanism” or as they prefer to call it Shinto, and Japanese Shinto were originally identical? The differences that we find to-day are all easily accounted for by the environment of the two forms in their early stages. In Korea, early in the course of its developement, before it had been really systematized it was met and superseded by Buddhism. As has been said “the new faith from India made thorough conquest of the southern half of the peninsula” and as Mr. Aston says of Japan so of Korea

here began a process of pacific penetration of the weaker by the stronger cult, which yielded some curious and important results,

[91] and left to Korea a Shintoism which thus nipped early in its development is simply Shamanism.

In Japan, on the other hand, the circumstances were different and the result also differed. The stronger, more virile of the inhabitants of southern Korea were energetic enough to emigrate. They took their Shinto with them, they systematized and developed the same unhindered by any outside force, so that when Buddhism some two centuries after it had gained a foothold in Korea entered Japan it found a fully developed and systematized Shinto with an established hierarchy, and an elaborate ritual.

Mr. Aston in his excellent and exhaustive treatise claims to have two objects in view and ably has he attained them.               

It is intended primarily and chiefly, as a repertory of the more significant facts of Shinto for the use of scientific students of religion. It also comprises an outline theory of the origin and earlier stages of the development of religion prepared with special reference to the Shinto evidence. The subject is treated from a positive not from a negative or agnostic standpoint, Religion being regarded as the normal function, not a disease, of humanity.

He has given us a work thorough enough for the scientific student and yet so clothed as to be intensely interesting to the casual reader.

The general happiness of the Japanese as a people is proverbial, how much of this is due to their religion, or is this feature of their faith a product of their naturally happy and joyous temperament? Which is cause and which is effect we will not attempt to decide but we early learn that

the emotional basis of religion is gratitude love and hope rather than fear. Shinto is essentially a religion of gratitude and love. The great Gods such as the Sun-Goddess and Deity of Food, are beneficent beings. They are addressed as parents and dear ancestors and their festivals have a joyous character. An eighth-century poet says ‘Every living man may feast his eyes with tokens of their love.’ They (the people) stretched forth their hands and danced and sang together, [92] exclaiming ‘Oh! how delightful! how pleasant! how clear!’ Even the boisterous Rain-Storm God has his good points. The demons of disease. and calamity are for the most part obscure and nameless personages.

Two great sources of religious thought are acknowledged as the means by which the Shinto Pantheon was peopled, personification and deification. The personifying of superhuman elemental powers which are daily witnessed or the ascribing unto men these superhuman powers and elevating them to the godhead.

In Shinto it, is the first of the two great currents of thought with which we are chiefly concerned. It is based much more on the conception—fragmentary, shallow and imperfect as it is—of the universe as sentient than on the recognition of pre-eminent qualities in human beings. alive or dead. It springs primarily from gratitude to—and, though in a less degree, fear of—the great natural powers on which our existence depends. The desire to commemorate the virtues and services of great men takes a secondary place.

The Deities are then classified and with their subdivisions form two interesting chapters, which are followed by an instructive account of the general features of this religion including ‘the functions of Gods,’ ‘the polytheistic character of Shinto,’ ‘Shintai,’ ‘the absence of idols,’ ‘the Infinite,’ etc.

The chapters on Myths and Mythical Narrative are absorbingly interesting. It is evidently the thought of the writer of the book that with real first beginnings Shinto pure and simple had not attempted to deal and that the first passages in both the Nihongji and Kyujiki are spurious as he claims that they are repudiated by the modern school of Shinto theologians and belong to the materialistic philosophy of China. He says .

Are not such speculations later accretions on the original myth? In Japan at any rate formation out of chaos is undoubtedly an afterthought.

First Gods.—We have next what is called “The seven generations of Gods, ending with the Creator Deities Izanagi and Izanami. Of the first six of these generations the most confused and contradictory accounts are given in the various authorities. There is no agreement as to the name of the first God on the list.

[93] The seventh generation consisted of two Deities, Izanagi and Iaanami. It is with them that. Japanese myth really begins, all that precedes being merely introductory and for the most part of comparatively recent origin.

The Nihongji tells us that

“Izanagi and Izanami stood on the floating bridge of heaven and held counsel together saying Is there not “a country beneath?’ Thereupon they. thrust down the jewel spear of Heaven and groping about with it found the ocean. The brine which dripped from the point of the spear coagulated and formed an island which received the name of Onogoro-jima. The two deities thereupon descended and dwelt there. They wished to be united as husband and wife and to produce countries.”  

Account then follows of their marriage and creating the islands of Japan and a number of deities.

The last Deity to be produced was the God of Fire. ln giving birth to him Izanami was burnt so that she sickened and lay down. From her vomit, etc., were born deities which personify the elements of metal, water and clay. In his rage and grief, Izanagi drew his sword and cut the Fire-God to pieces, generating thereby a number of deities.

An interesting account is then given of her death and descent to Yomi the land of darkness, Izanagi’s pursuit even into the land of Yomi, his bare escape therefrom through the rugged pass.

On returning from Yomi, Izanagi’s first care was to bathe in the sea to purify himself from pollutions. A number of deities were generated in the process among whom were the Gods of Good and Ill Luck. The Sun-Goddess was born from the washings of the left eye and the Moon-God from that of his right, while a third deity named Susa No Wo (referred to in the earlier chapters as having Korean associations) was generated from the washing of the nose. To the Sun-Goddess Izanagi gave charge of the ‘Plain of High. Heaven’ and to the Moon-God was allotted the realm of night.

Of the dissentions that arose among the Gods and of all their varied doings space will not allow us to go further but we have said enough to show what an interesting field is opened up by this book.

While Mr. Aston rightly says his ‘business is with the past and not with the future’ we must in closing [94] notice one or two passages that look to the future. On page 68 he says

Monotheism was an impossibility in ancient Japan. But we may trace certain tendencies in this direction which are not without interest. A nation may pass from polytheism to monotheism in three ways; Firstly by singling out one deity and causing him to absorb the functions and worship of the rest; secondly, by a fresh deification of a wider conception of the universe; and thirdly, by the dethroning of the native deities in favor of a single God of foreign origin. It is this last the most usual fate of polytheisms which threatens the old Gods of Japan.

At the close of the last chapter he also says

The official cult of the present day is substantially the “Pure Shinto” of Motoori and Hirata. But it has little vitality. A rudimentary religion of this kind is quite inadequate for the spiritual sustenance of a nation which in these latter days has raised itself to so high a pitch of enlightenment and civilization. The main stream of Japanese piety has cut out for itself new channels. It has turned to Buddhism, at the time of the restoration in a languishing state, is now showing signs of renewed life and activity. Another and still more formidable rival has appeared, to whose progress, daily increasing in momentum, what limit shall be prescribed ?                                  .

Let us in closing this review quote once more from the sixty-eighth page where Mr. Aston says

Weakened by the encroachments of Buddhism and the paralyzing influence of Chinese sceptical philosophy, they (the ancient Gods of Japan) already begin to feel

The rays of Bethlehem blind their dusky eyne. 




The King’s Property


A farmer, who lived very long ago in one of the mountainous villages of the Kang Won Province, was in a miserable condition, owing to the failure of his farm.

His farming life started from his very childhood. He was an expert and had good land as well, but, as [95] fortune would have it, he struggled for a mere fruitless harvest in the fall. He and his family were at the point of starving and he determined to put an end to his life and not to see tender ones dying from want of food. But was it possible for him to die without doing anything to prevent this ?

He called upon his kindest neighbour and laid down a hearty complaint. “Well, Kim, if you would be so kind as to lend me one year’s expenses, I shall repay you with thanks. I am determined to try one year more and, if I fail again, I will kill my family and die myself.”

“What are you talking about, my boy,” He exclaimed, “Do you think I am so cruel as to be glad to see you doing such a thing? I had rather not lend you any sum, for then 1 shall not be the cause of your death and that of your family.”

“Well, Kim, it is the same thing whether you see me dying now or later. And don’t talk or think so scornfully. How do you know that I shall be unable to get a good harvest this year?” “Oh no, I don’t mean that, but you told me that you were determined to die! However, you may be sure that I will not hesitate to lend to you. Do your best only.” This business being successfully accomplished, he went home and started from the next day to work with increased energy.

Strange, very strange, that he always sang “King.” Whatever he did, he said “It is King’s work and I am doing it for him.” If his cow pulled the plow lazily, he scolded her, “Why, you senseless beast; you do not understand how great the King is!”

Every time he worked in the field he repeated the word “King.” As the autumn set in, he reaped a good rich harvest; so good that he was able to pay all the debts he owed during the past 12 years, and enough to provide his family with plenty of food. Now be knew really the King was the greatest man in. the world. The news of this reached the villagers and they came in numbers to offer congratulations.

One evening he proposed to his wife to repay the King to whom he owed so much. His wife readily [96] declared that this was a good idea, but only feared that nothing would be suitable for so great a man. He said, “Have we not various kinds of grain? We have of course, and now if you have them cleansed and prepare some bread of this mixture it will taste very nice.” Ordering this done he himself went to make a straw bag with the finest straw he had.

When all was prepared, he set out to find the King though he did not know where he was. His wife said that he was quite foolish to go because he had hardly been beyond his village except when he went to market about 10 li away. But he replied testily that she was talking without proper respect for her husband, and so bade her farewell.

At the end of his journey about a month later he smelled the air of Seoul. His first sight was the stone arch inside which he saw numbers of people who were running hither and thither. He greatly wondered to see so many people crowded together. At twilight he made his way to an inn but was refused because the inn keeper judging from his queer appearance, thought him a thief or beggar. (His hair seemed to have never known a comb, his face had never been washed and he was in old fashioned dirty clothes.)

Thus he left the inn with the precious straw bag thinking the inn keeper was a man of a different nature from the rest of mankind; however he did not care much because he bad found a snug place under the Bridge of “Supiokio.”

He lay down but could hardly sleep, because he was so cold. At midnight a light glanced in, after which followed a gentlemanly looking person. The servant with the lantern stopped with surprise exclaiming,

“There’s a human being underneath there on such a cold night,” whereupon the gentleman behind rushed out saying, “Take him up, if he is a human being.” The servant then called to him and be was soon in front of the gentleman who first of all asked him “What are you, ghost or man?” “A man,” he said. “Why are you here?”

[97] Instead of replying he told him he was impertinent to ask a stranger what was his secret. “But,” he said, “1 am anxious to know why . Excuse me.”

“I am a farmer in Kang Won Do’’ was all he said. The King waited long laughingly but the man would not speak any more. So both the King and servants advised him not to be too determined to keep his secret because they knew a part of it. “‘l owed too much to the King of our country so I am going to offer him an humble present which I have in this bag,” he at length replied showing the rough straw bag. Then he told why he was going to sleep there. The King told him that be would show him a good place to sleep and lead him to the “King” the next day. “Are you really sure you can?” said he. “Yes, I can; come along,” was the answer. The servants were ordered to take good care of him and the King returned to his palace. The next morning all the officials and servants from the rank of minister down to gateman were ordered to come to see the King in the palace.

They were all present at once but did not know what was to happen. The King descended from the throne and calling to the servant, said “Bring him in.” After a while to the great surprise of all, a monster with a straw bag carne into the beautiful palace.             

Everyone laughed in his sleeve and anxiously listened. “Now,” the King began, “Now you are in the King’s residence. Therefore do not conceal why you came up here.” The farmer from the compound looking shame-facedly around said, “Are you the King, then?” “Yes, I am.” “Oh! I am glad to see Your Majesty! How are you, Sire? l have struggled out of many difficulties and last night I met a kind gentleman on the Big Bridge.” “Very well,” the King said , “as l am the real King, what have you to give me?”

“Tru1y, your Majesty, your kindness is unforgettable. I have brought you a bag of cakes and I give them to you now,” he said, taking off the bag from his back. The King said “Thank you. I want to take your cake in the company of officials so just look around and see [98] how many are here. Distribute them yourself. Will you not?”

First then he gave the King a big piece, and then small pieces to the officials and so on. The King remarked that he ate the cake with great relish, and said he was fortunate to have such a good man in his dominion.

He was proud of talking about him as a simple hearted man.

“Now my officials, as the cakes tasted well you must pay for them.” All gladly opened their purses and soon a large sum was collected for the simple hearted man. But the farmer said, “No I do not want money; I have plenty at home. Now I go home happy because I have repaid you, my King. I don’t want money. My wife must be anxious to know how the King enjoyed our present. I am in a hurry to go, so good bye, King.”

The King and officials heartily advised him to take the money with him. But he strictly refused.

The King was sorry arid asked him what he wanted beside. To this also he replied that nothing was wanted.

After the many tiresome inquiries, the farmer thought within himself, “As the head man of our village is so great, I will say I would like to take that place.” So he did and all the court broke into laughter, issuing an order to the Magistrate of the district the farmer lived in to appoint him as the head man of the village.

The head man of this village was therefore honoured specially and highly different from others, because of the Imperial order.

During his management of the village, everything went on well and now be has become a very able and efficient man.

The King at last sent for him and finding that he was no longer so very ignorant and simple appointed him the head man.

He was ordered to leave his position and come to Seoul.

His rise was rapid until he became the prime minister next to the King.




Missionary Work of the General Council.


That missionary work in Korea is very successful is well known to students of missions. That the center of the largest development is in the northwest is also known but not in any detail. Feeling that a little resume of the facts, as presented to the various missions, would be helpful, espeeially at this time when we are seeking to economize force and effort by common sense applications of united effort, and so serve to help along the general cause, I have collated the following facts.

There are about 170 men and women missionaries from American churches working in Korea. Canada has about 10 in northeast Korea; Australia eight in the south with Fusan as a center. The English Mission has some 12 men and women There is a Y. M. C. A. organization at Seoul and one Baptist at Gensan. There may be and perhaps are others but the above constitute the Anglo-Saxon missionary force in this peninsula. The organization and enterprise of the Roman Catholic church in Korea can only be mentioned here in commendation of their general purpose.

What follows is mainly concerning the Presbyterian and Methodist churches. These two muster about 170 missionaries and had some 53,000 adherents and following in June 1905. It is interesting to note the development of the work in relation to the distribution of missionaries if only to note that they seem to have no relation. Missionary enterprise does not follow up its successes by properly equipping developed work but scatters the missionaries either at “strategic” (?) points or to big centers where big hospital buildings or other institutional work overwhelms the evangelistic phase. This fact will come out quite clearly by a study of the table herewith.

The 200 odd men and women missionaries of the Presbyterian and Methodist churches, north, south, east and west, Canadian and Australian, occupy some 18 cities [100] and centers. These figures include only those of the missions in the General Council and do not take in those of the English Mission, the Baptist, the Y. M. C. A. and one or two other Christian organizations. Nor does it include the Roman Catholic work which is the oldest and by far the largest single Christian organization in Korea.

The table herewith, taken from the official reports of the various missions, shows the development and localities of the work of the Council.





men & women

Baptized converts

Adherent or following

Native contributions

Presb. N.

Meth. N.

Presb. N.

Meth. N.

Presb. N.

Meth. N.

Presb S.




Presb Aus.


Presb Can



Presb N.

Presb N.

Meth S.


Pyeng Yang

Pyeng Yang




Syen Chun



Mokpo & Kwang-ju




Song Chin

Ham Heung




Song- do
























































































Educational and hospital work is not given but is larger in the northwest than in any other section. It is also more self supporting up to the last reports. The medical classes in the stations of Syenchun and Pyeng Yang are especially noteworthy.

The table shows what is generally known and that is, that the largest developed work is in the northwest. With 39 men and women missionaries, which is about one fourth of the total number in Korea, the baptisms, adherents and contributions are about half of all in all Korea. Statistics were ever deceiving so no inferences are to be drawn from the table. It is merely interesting to know where the developed work is and how it is being [101] taken care of. The past year has shown one of the best plans ever carried out in the visiting of missionaries to other stations and helping in the work. Of course some urgent conditions were overlooked but the plan is in operation and bids fair to work such splendid results that it will become a fixed scheme. With railway from Weju to Pusan, and branch lines under construction, there is no reason why when conditions call for it there should not be all the skilled help necessary at certain centers where conditions call for urgent aid.             

The splendid work done last. year and the promise for the coming, on this plan, for the Theological School at Pyeng Yang, is especially note-worthy.

In studying this table one cannot but be struck with the fact that there is now in this little country of Korea a fine and well equipped force of missionaries. I doubt if any other country in the world, with as small a population, has so comparatively large a force. This means that if the general work is carried out in unison the whole country may be powerfully influenced. I have at this writing not heard from many places where the revival services were carried on, but in those from which I have a wonderful revival took place. There is no reason why. if the missionaries now in Korea work together, that this should not in our lifetime become essentially a Christian country.




Report of Bible Committee of Korea for 1905


The Rev. A. Adamson, of the Australian. Presbyterian Mission, Pusan, writes of the experiences of his colporteurs and as it is a description of the native colporteur at work in Korea, l quote:

“There is necessarily a limited variety in the experiences that befall the colporteur in the pursuit of his calling. Let me give you in a word the gist of these as reported to me. He soon becomes accustomed to the daily gentle rebuffs he must receive with good grace unless indeed he be content to carry on his work in a purely [102] business manner and like the travelling merchant, expose his goods in the thoroughfare and wait without word or comment, for some chance purchaser to come along. Sometimes he will travel a whole day without being able to sell a single copy, but, he is never without opportunities, which he seizes, for telling the Gospel story. He knows therefore that even without sales his efforts are not necessarily in vain. Now and then he arrives at some obscure, dilapidated hamlet, whose few inhabitants have never before heard of a Saviour, and give him an earnest hearing as he out of his own experience tells of the power of the gospel to deliver and keep from sin and to change and heal broken lives. And thus having aroused their interest in the most important of all things, and prayed with and for them that their hearts may be influenced by the Spirit of God and brought to a saving knowledge of the truth, he will come away rejoicing that the copies of the written word have been sold and that undoubtedly they will be read in part. Again as he prosecutes his efforts in some town where the inhabitants are numerous but apparently indifferent to him and his message, some one will come and ask for a quiet talk about the doctrine. This stranger professes a devout regard for God but is perplexed that in the darkness of his mind he does not know how to worship him. He has also heard of Jesus and has in his possession a gospel which he reads and tries to understand, but cannot. He is convinced that the doctrine is good but how can he, being ignorant and slow to learn, understand it. Could the colporteur please help him, for his mind is ill at ease and he wants to have peace. Occasionally a different type of enquirer presents himself to the colporteur and sincerely requests to know what material advantages would accrue to him were he to buy a book and do the doctrine. And he is somewhat surprised to have the unambiguous reply, none. The Gospel is primarily for the saving of the soul and not for the enrichment of the body. True, says the colporteur, I receive so much for my labours, but when I have paid for my food and clothing, how much think you is left for the. support of my family? Again he meets a man to whom he sold a gospel on a former visit who has been reading it and telling the story to his neighbors. He is now praying to God and wants to believe firmly in Jesus who alone can save.”

The Rev. J. L. Gerdine, of the Methodist Episcopal Mission, South, Wonsan, who often accompanies his colporteurs on their trips writes:

[103] “A method I have used with success has been to load a donkey and, accompanied by one or two colporteurs, go from village to village off the main road. where after preaching at some central place, the Scriptures were offered for sale. At such times there would be an eager demand for them, the difficulty being to provide books to meet the demand.            

“On one trip in new territory, we offered gospels for sale m a large magistracy, where the story of life bad never. been heard. Our remnant of about one hundred copies were sold in about an hour. I have since visited that place and found a congregation of about sixty, with their own church building and as earnest and enthusiastic a group as I have seen in Korea. The eagerness with which they bought the Word on our first visit, seemed an index to the way in which they received the truth when they understood its meaning.”

The Rev. F. S . Miller, of the Presbyterian Mission, Chungju, finds that his colporteur is not tied to any hard and fast rules in introducing his books, but has various ways of persuading men to take his leaflets and buy his books. On one trip when I accompanied him, he had a donkey named Skylark, which was given him by a consecrated American school teacher. Skylark liked paper. So when a man refused one of Yo’s leaflets, Yo pulled a spoiled and crumpled one out of his pocket and handed it to Skylark. Skylark ate it like a goat and Yo, turning to the man said: ‘See the donkey has more sense than you, he takes what is offered him.’ The chances are that the ice was broken and the man bought a book before he said ‘Go in peace.’ ‘‘

Never before have so many words of appreciation reached us in any one year as to the worth of the colporteur as an evangelistic agency. It seems as if he had to work for some time in a territory before his worth is realised and before the people have gained confidence in him and his message. As Mr. Adamson expresses it:

“We know in part but shall never know fully how much the success of our missionary enterprise owes. to the grace of God manifested through and in connection with, the labors of those patient toilers by whom the word of deliverance is put into the hands of those who have lost their way in the wilderness of life.”

The Rey. W.R. Foote, of the Canadian Presbyterian Mission, Wonsan, says:                

“The great testimony to the genuineness of the [103] colporteurs’ work is the large number of people becoming Christians in each of the fields occupied by them. In each field a church has been built (and in some fields more than one), a school has been started, the people conform to the discipline of the church, and there are no factions.”

Mr. Foote adds to the above testimony by giving:

“One instance of the opinion the heathen hold of Christianity. A man of good family and some wealth had been for a long time given to drink, and with the years the habit grew until his family were alarmed lest he would waste all he had. Finally some men of the village met and told him to become a Christian—that nothing else could reform him. They had seen bad men become good and he could be saved too—but only by becoming a Christian. It was decided that he should go to church the following Wednesday evening. His friends went with him and he decided to believe and continues to live a life consistent with his profession. I visited his home recently and am well pleased with the progress he and his family are making in the Christian life.”              

The same writer in speaking of one of his colporteurs says:

“When he entered the employ of the Bible Societies there were only five Christians in his field—a field in which he continues to be the only colporteur while there are now 250 Christians and two churches.”  

And of another man he writes: ‘“Last year there were only twenty Christians in his territory and this year there are one hundred which are cared for and developed by the colporteur.”

In the South, in Kyeng Sang Province. the same good work is being done by our colporteur. The Rev. R. H. Sidebotham, of the Presbyterian Mission, Pusan, gives the following account of the man under his supervision :

“Mr. Chang, our colporteur, was at the market in Chogei City. A man came forward and bought two gospels, and entered into conversation. It appeared that ten months before he bad bought two gospels and after reading them became convinced that they were a good message to him. He believed in secret. Twice as the colporteur had come to Chogei he had bought more books, but this time he wanted to get the whole story correctly. So he said, ‘Please come to my house tonight [105] and bring your friend along, for Mr. Yi was helping Mr. Chang proclaim the gospel, although Mr. Yi was not drawing any salary. So going to the house that night, they were surprised to find the man knew quite a good deal of the Scripture story. On the wall were some funny papers. ‘What are these?’ they asked. ‘Those are prayers. The gospel said I must pray, and I supposed that was the way to pray. Do not the people who do this doctrine pray by these papers on the wall?” And they taught him the real inwardness of prayer from the heart. They urged him to let his light shine, for as yet he was only a secret believer.  After some persuasion he went out and brought in some friends. They too, heard gladly. For ten days, Mr. Chang and Mr. Yi preached in that house when they were not out in the villages nearby, and they left five men definitely promised for Christ.

“Hearing that there was a man in the village of Oktu, three miles away, who was interested, they sought him out. He proved to be a gentleman, but his interest had been exaggerated. However, they proceeded to interest him, and soon his sarang (guestroom) was overflowing with other gentlemen, real yangbans (high class) who wanted to meet the two guests. And, they poured out the truths of salvation so well, that the Spirit came down in power, and in a few days thirteen men were pledged for Christ, all yangbans, several of them scholars. Such an ingathering was never known in South Kyeng Sang Province. And this in a county where there was not one believer.

“I went out there six weeks after the first entrance of light, going into this latter place first. There were only fifteen houses in the village and twelve of them were already Christian, The other three began to feel lonely. A site was being laid out for a church, for it was impossible for all the worshippers to meet together. They bought liberally of books, sang the untried hymns together, and studied with a will. They praised Colporteur Chang highly as their spiritual father. We went into other villages nearby into which this work was spreading, and found an ardour and zeal and knowledge. which caused us to be truly thankful. Chogei City had lost none of its would-be believers but was adding others. From a county without a known believer in six weeks, to one with one hundred disciples of Christ! And Colporteur Chang was the instrument the Spirit had used to lay the first foundation.”              

[106] Similar good work is mentioned by t:he Rev. W. L. Swallen, of the same mission, whose work is on the northwestern coast. He writes in sending his somewhat belated. report of his colporteurs :

“It had not been forgotten or neglected; but owing to the immense work which I have to do by reason of their energies.” And this in spite of the statement: “They nearly worried the life out of me begging for Testaments which I was unable to get for them. Just one year ago, at Kang-ga-kol there was one lone Christian woman. I made it a point for my colporteur to go there at regular stated intervals. Today there are 40 believers worshiping regularly every Sabbath.

Other similar cases might be mentioned if I had the time. But this is sufficient for a testimony to the practical efficiency of the colporteur in my circuit.”

The Rev. W. G. Cram, of the Methodist Episcopal Mission, South; Songdo, gives a like testimony to the effectiveness of his colporteurs :

“The colporteur has been. the instrument by which the church has been established and preserved. He is the one who has brought the church out of heathenism. incident will suffice to illustrate the kind of work which has characterized the work of the colporteur as I have seen him. In the northern county of the province of Kang Won there is a Korean village, numbering at least 800 houses. Some colporteurs, accompanied by the Rev, C. T. Collyer and Mr. Hugh Miller, about five years ago, in making a tour of the country, went into the village and preached and sold quite a number of gospels. The people received the word gladly but for five years the village was left uncultivated because of work as needy nearer home. This large village was called to my attention and I decided to send a colporteur there to live. Just four months after he went into the village there sprang up a church which numbered at least fifty. Now after on1y nine months there is a list of probationers in this village numbering two-hundred. This is the work of the colporteur and this is only one incident of many. He is a necessary adjunct to our work not only in the matter of spreading the gospel itself, but he is also the factor in the establishment of the Church. God bless the colporteur and the people who enable us to keep him at work by their unstinted contributions.”

The Rev. J. R.. Moose, of the same mission, Seoul, writes us in the same happy strain, at the same time [107] bearing testimony to the fact that if we cast our bread upon the waters it shall return unto us after many days :

“It is now only a few days since I returned from a most interesting visit to part of our work in Kang Won Province. For the past seven or eight years we have had one or more men at work in this province without being permitted to see much fruit as the result of out efforts. I am glad to be able to report a great change so that now we are beginning to see results of the seed sowing which has been going on all these years. During my last visit I met scores of new believers, who have been brought to make a confession of faith in Christ, as the result of the faithful work of our colporteurs. On enquiring several of them told me that they had bought gospels from one of our men, one, two or three years ago; had been reading them and thus had been brought to believe in Jesus. This only showed again how the Word will bring forth fruit, though we may sometimes have to wait a long time before we see it.

I met one old gentleman who had recently come out as a believer in Jesus and I asked him to tell me how he came to believe the doctrine. He said that some time ago two pastors came by his house and he had bought a gospel which he had been reading; since then one of our colporteurs came along and he heard the good news from him and decided to believe. I at once recognized him as one who had bought a gospel from me when Brother Gerdine and I passed that way more than two years before. I had not since been over this road and now I was delighted to find this proof that the Lord’s Word is doing its work in a quiet unknown way while we are busy somewhere else.”

The Seoul railway stations have been visited by our colporteurs but they labored under the disadvantage of not having the permission of the railway authorities. Now however, in conjunction with the Korean Religious Tract Society, we have received permission to put stalls in the chief stations of the Seoul-Fusan-Chemulpo railways and in this way we hope to be able to supply the travelling public with the Word of life ..

“Rev. C. Engel, of the Australian Presbyterian Mission, Pusan, writes that his “Colporteur Yi has done a great deal of work on the railway stations too. When he was travelling last summer on the Masanpo railway, which is a military line and at that time was not open [108] to general traffic, but could only be used by special permit, Yi was arrested by the guard for selling books which the guard said was against the regulat1ons. He was going to hand him over to the police, when Yi explained the nature of the books he had for sale. Thereupon the guard offered to get him special permission from the military authorities, after obtaining which Yi had no more difficulties.”

So far we have confined our remarks to the work of the colporteurs on the mainland, but the islands of the sea are not neglected and there, too, blessing is following the efforts of the men who are bringing the good news of a God reconciled to these isolated people. The Rev. E. M . Cable, of the M. B. Mission, Chemulpo, who has many islands under his care, writes of the work of the colporteur as follows:

“I consider the work of my colporteurs as very necessary to opening up new territory, and in this they have been very successful during the past year. Mr. Yun Chung-il, one of the colporteurs who is travelling on the islands, has been instrumental in raising up Christians and work on twelve large islands and has made it possible for me to go in and reap a bountiful harvest. He reports many interesting conversations with the heathen and numbers of conversations among those with whom he has worked. On the island where he lives, he chanced one day to enter a large Buddhist temple where a number of priests with shorn hair were doing their daily round of prayers and sacrifice to the image of the sacred Buddha, which adorned the temple. Singling out a bright looking young priest, he fell in conversation with him and tried to convince him of the folly and wrong of such service as he was offering to this false god. In the course of the conversation he succeeded in getting the priest to buy a copy of John’s gospel, which he read with much interest. In a few days afterwards he walked all the way down from the temple to where Mr. Yun lived, to tell him that he had decided to give up his worship of Buddha and become a follower of the true God and that he was going to attend Mr. Yun’s church every Sunday. The entrance of the truth gave light and this earnest priest of Buddha soon became a follower of the true and living God.”

“The work of my colporteur on Kang Wha (another. island) has been fraught with good success during the [109] past year and he reports many conversions from the sale of the gospels. He told me of two men who on one occasion, when asked to buy gospels and read them, made fun of him, deriding both the books he was selling and the Christian Church to which he belonged, saying, ‘We don’t want anything to do with the Westerners’ books or religion.’ The colporteur reasoned and argued with them many long hours and finally succeeded in getting them to buy some of the gospels. Out of curiosity, these men, who had made fun of him and his books, read the copies of the gospels. The word of the Lord ‘My word shall not return unto me void’ was verified in their cases, for upon reading the gospels they became troubled because of their sins and both came to the church, confessed their sins, and asked to be enrolled as enquirers. One of these men is now a class-leader in the church at Kang Wha and the other an earnest Christian.

“Many other interesting incidents in connection with the colporteur’s work might be cited but the above will suffice to show that these men supported by the Bible Societies are doing good and faithful work for the spread of the gospel in Korea.”

It is very gratifying to be able to mention the fact that considerable interest is taken by the native church in colportage. In several churches, in various parts of the country, colporteurs are at work, who are supported in part by the natives and in part by us; The Wonsan M. E. Church, South, and the Mokpo Presbyterian Church have each supported a colporteur during the year, and strange to say these men’s sales were far better than those of any other colporteur working in their respective provinces. The Eul Yul church, under the Rev. C. E. Sharp’s care, has a small stock of books left in the church and its members take some of these to sell when they go to the market or nearby villages to preach. While these beginnings are small, they show a trend in the right direction, the Korean church undertaking the dissemination of the Korean Scriptures for the Korean people.                      ..

(To be continued.)



[110]  Editorial Comment


Our contemporary The Korea Daily News in its issue          of March 10th said :        

“With regard to the audience granted by the Emperor to Marquis Ito yesterday we have received a report, which we believe to be trust worthy, which confirms our oft-expressed opinion that there is some obstacle to the full exercise, by Marquis Ito, of the powers conferred upon the Resident-General by the Japanese Government,

“We are informed that after delivering a complimentary letter from the Emperor of Japan and having given a sketch of the steps that must be taken to accomplish the reformation of Korea, Marquis Ito went on to say that he did not expect the Emperor to treat with him in his official capacity of Resident-General but wished to be regarded as Marquis Ito—a foreigner having the welfare of Korea at heart. The Japanese representative further said that. he would consult with the Cabinet Ministers before making any innovations and would in no case act in opposition to the wishes of His Majesty. Marquis Ito added that he hoped that in any difficulty, however trivial, the Emperor would at once send for and consult with him.                           

“After this the hall was cleared of all except the Emperor, the Prime Minister, the Master of Ceremonies and Marquis Ito and his interpreter, when a conversation took place the text of which has not transpired.

“Marquis Ito, accompanied by a numerous and brilliant suite, left the palace at about 5.30 having had an audience of about two hours duration.”

and on March 15th

“It will be remembered that in referring to this audience some days ago we stated that Marquis Ito, on the termination of the official part of the proceedings had a private conversation with the Emperor the nature of which had not then transpired. Rumour, supported by some of our vernacular contemporaries, says that Marquis Ito asked for the recall of Prince Eui Wha and a number of Korean political offenders who have from time to time taken refuge in Japan. As some of these refugees were concerned in the murder of the Queen eleven years ago, we find it hard to credit this story in its entirety.”

[111] As to the accuracy of the information obtained by our contemporary in its details we cannot be assured, but it suffices to show, what the REVIEW” has always maintained, that Marquis Ito will assume a conciliating policy in his dealings with Korea and the Koreans.

All acknowledge that reform is needed in Korea, All enlightened Koreans agree in this. Many believe that had Korea been left to herself she would long ere this have wrought out her own political salvation. But this is largely a matter of speculation now and we must consider conditions as they are and the crying need of reform in the internal management of affairs is patent to all. If Marquis Ito can bring this reform about, all will rejoice: but most certainly it can only be done by a conciliatory policy; and we believe that the Marquis has marked this out as the line that he has to follow. As we have said before, he has a hard task before him. He seems to realize this himself, and it is the part of all good wishers of Korea to take him at his word until his actions should prove that he will not carry out his promises.

As to the suggestions regarding the return of the political offenders in Japan, it must be acknowledged that there are gradations in their offences, and that many of them would at the present time be of no little service in the reforms that may be instituted, but we can hardly believe that Marquis Ito would suggest the return of any of those who were immediately concerned in the murder of the Queen and the disgraceful scenes that followed. There are certain crimes that can never be forgiven by the nation, and those who had a hand in the planning and carrying out of the plot and crime of 1895 have forever ruined their chances to serve their country acceptably. Unless we should be confronted with indisputable proof we could not believe that Marquis Ito would suggest to the Emperor the pardon and recall of those who so cruelly murdered his beloved Consort.




All who take an interest in this land, especially those who have been resident here for some years, cannot at [112] least but feel disappointed at her loss of entire autonomy and long for the time when as Marquis Ito predicts the flags of Korea and Japan shall float side by side with equal lustre. Some however seem to see no prospect of better things, and it is to be regretted that the writer of “At Kija’s Grave,” looking only on the dark side, did not get a glimpse of the bright prospect of another “Kija” of to-day. Among Korea’s young men there are many of much promise and we believe that somewhere there stands one who at the right time will step forth and lead this people to take their true place among the nations of the world. In part at least it must he acknowledged that it is to herself that Korea to-day owes her degradation. When she had the opportunity she did not profit by it, and when she received her warnings she refused to heed them; and yet it was not so much her people as the ruling classes. Among the people of Korea there may be another “Kija.”  




             Another loan, and this time of ten millions! What does it mean? For what is it to be used? Is it to meet a deficit in the budget? Some years ago there was to be a deficit and a large loan was to be negotiated with a foreign power, but a change came in the political complexion, and another was put in charge of Korea’s finances. Instead of looking around for loans he started to stop up some of the leaks, and as a result was able to pay all the expenses of the year and, we are told, to pay off at the end of the year one million of Korea’s indebtedness. Korea is not a poor country. Its resources are sufficient for its needs, and with proper husbanding there will be a good balance each year. If the above could be accomplished by an Englishman, the equal ought to be shown by those in power now. We are not told for what this large loan is to be used. If it is for permanent improvements that will in the. end add to Korea’s revenue, there may he some excuse for it; but would it not be well to mend the holes in the purse and see that the leaks are well stopped before another ten millions are [113] put in? Improvements are the order of the day and we welcome them but the old Latin proverb festina lente, make haste slowly, should not be forgotten if the best results are to be obtained. Let Baron Megata arrange for the proper collection of the taxes, stop up the leaks, economize as he well knows how in all the departments and after he has learned what balances he has over, take up the matter of possible advantage from loans, etc.




In seeking accounts of the progress of Mission work in Korea it was not the REVIEW’S intention to institute comparisons; but believing that the missionary body is one of the strong forces for the regeneration of this land, and that the progress of missionary work would therefore show to a large extent how far Korea was open to influences from the West, and that therefore even those of our readers who take but little or no interest in Mission work per se would be glad to know the facts, we have opened our columns for these articles. An anonymous writer has contributed a few words of these facts apparently with a view to bringing out a comparison between the work in the northwest and other sections of the land. While we deprecate such comparisons, yet our columns are open, and we agree with the writer when he says, “Statistics were ever deceiving, so no inferences are to be drawn.” Those in the furthest south will rejoice most heartily in all the success in the furthest north, and need feel no discouragement if in their section they have not yet seen similar results. For the encouragement of the workers in the south, we would note that the first work that was done by Messrs. Ross and Mcintire from China was almost entirely in the north. west. That when the first Protestant missionary arrived in Korea the result of the seed-sowing from China was such that, (with the exception of work in the Capital and its immediate vicinity) almost the entire attention of the missionary body working in Korea for the first decade and more, was directed toward the northwest .

Naturally where we have largest work and most liberal sums we must expect the largest results. The larger [114] force of missionaries in Seoul may to a great extent be accounted for by the fact that here necessarily have been established the centres of the Mission machinery for the whole body. Here to a large extent centres the translating and literary work; publication and distribution of literature throughout the whole land must be done from Seoul, so that some of the extra force here are working for and with those who are scattered over the land.

Therefore in Korea in no place do “Big hospital buildings or institutional work overwhelm the evangelistic phase.” With these few notes we leave the paper with its interesting figures to our readers, simply calling attention to the writer’s error in concluding that Korea has a comparatively larger force of missionaries than any other country of its population. Any Encylodpaedia of Missions would give him the figures and show his mistake.




It is with much sympathy for the suffering people that the world has heard and continues to hear of the famine in northern Japan. At such times the sympathies of all are enlisted and the difficulty of properly coping with such a condition is apparent to everybody. The readers of the REVIEW are doubtless conversant with the main facts. The “Japan Herald” reports that about. two hundred villagers of Shindono-mura, Adachigori, in Fukushima prefecture, one of the famine-stricken provinces in the north, recently held a demonstration to ventilate their dissatisfaction regarding the dilatoriness of the Mayor in connection with the relief works. The mob was, however, dispersed by the police before any serious breach of the peace had occurred. The villagers have succeeded, through a deputation, in obtaining a promise from the Mayor that the public works in connection with the relief of the sufferers will be speedily commenced.                                 

This grievance seems to have been shared by the villagers’ of Nagaoka-mura, Dategori, of the same prefecture, where some fifty peasants, armed with spades and [115] other tools, proceeded to attack the Village Office. After some difficulty the police succeeded in quieting the infuriated peasants.

In Senouye-machi, Shinobugori and some other villages in the same prefecture disputes have arisen between the landowners and the tenants, presumably in connection with the matter of rent. In some cases, the suffering tenants sought the intervention of the police, having been unable to bring the landowners to terms. A serious disturbance is anticipated if the present state of things continues.

All nations are striving to help at this time and as heretofore in the Indian famine and the Irish famine and the Armenian massacres the well known and energetic proprietor of the New York “Christian Herald” has come to the front not only in liberal and princely donations but in collecting for this object. The fund has already reached to more than a fourth of a million of dollars (American money) and as before his agents are already on the field assisting in the distribution of this much needed relief. Such times as this bring out most plainly the great fact of the brotherhood of man.




If the report as quoted by our contemporary the Korea Daily News is true all the friends of Dr. ]. McLeavy Brown will be rejoiced. We have watched with much interest the Press notices of his journeyings and of the cordial reception that he has everywhere received. He well deserves all the honors that have been tendered him and we hope soon to see him back in the East serving both his own country and these Eastern peoples whom he understands so well. Our contemporary says

“There is a report about, says the ‘L. & C. Express,’ that on his return to England Mr. J. McLeavy Brown, who has just resigned from the direction of the Korean Customs, will be offered an important post in the British diplomatic service. ‘‘



[116]  News Calendar.


At 4 o’clock on the afternoon of March the 2nd Marquis Ito and suite reached Seoul. Mr. Tsurahara, the Vice-Resident General had proceeded to Fusan to meet the Marquis. The arrival was greeted with a salute of eleven guns and General Hasegawa with a large guard and several companies of soldiers and lancers met the Marquis and escorted him to what was formerly the Japanese Legation. On March the 9th the Marquis was received in audience by the Emperor.

Count Inouye, the Aide-de-Camp to the Emperor of Japan, who accompanied Marquis Ito, called on General Hasegawa on the 3rd inst, and presented to the General a gold watch and chain and a sum of money as gift from His Majesty, the Japanese Emperor.

It is reported that the Educational Department has submitted an application for a grant of one million yen for the establishment and improvement of schools.

His Majesty the Korean Emperor who has the welfare of his people at heart is said to have issued an Imperial Edict on the 11th inst. expressing his sympathy with them in their need. The Cabinet Ministers were to issue instructions to the local Governors and district officials prohibiting any acts of coercion towards the people. Miscellaneous taxes in various districts which were actually being collected without recognition by the Government should be strictly forbidden.

The Korean Minister to Berlin, having been recalled, informs the Government that he cannot leave Germany until be bas received sufficient money to pay his debts and passage money.

It is reported that Yi Yong lk has arrived in Shanghai from Europe but we have not been able to confirm the news except that it is generally agreed that he has left Europe.

There is a rumour afloat that the grandson of the late Tai-Ouen Koun who has been residing in Japan for a considerable time will shortly receive advice to return to his native country.

Prince Eui Wha’s return is now assured. One of our contemporaries says “It is said that the sum of Yen 30,000 has been bestowed upon Prince Eui Wha, who is now in Japan, by the Korean Emperor, in order to defray the expenses of education and travelling incurred whilst the prince was residing in America, and which have been standing for some considerable period. It is also announced that he was received in audience by the Mikado on the 18th inst and that his return is now simply a matter of days.

It is with regret that we announce the sudden death of the Auditor of the American mines, Mr. Pelley. The cause and exact date of his death are not yet known to us.

Dr. Whiting and Dr. Moffett both paid a short visit to Seoul. The former staid only one day and the latter paid a short visit both going and returning from Chong Ju.             

[117] Mr. Kim Yun Choong, late Korean Minister to Washington, reached Seoul on March the 4th.

Mr. and Mrs. Megata gave an “At Home” at their residence, the former German Legation, Thursday, March 8th to which a host of friends both native and foreign, were invited. Mr. and Mrs. Megata and their family will be a welcome addition to the social circle here.

As a consequence of a riot which occurred in Si Hung district last autumn three Japanese were injured, and the Korean, government has now been presented with a hill for £3.250.00 for medical expenses, etc.

A rumour is current, that in order to relieve the financial stringency at present existing Marquis Ito is in favour of once more putting into circulation the old nickels collected at such cost by Mt. Megata, the Financial Adviser.          .               

The many friends of Mr. Hagiwara, the ex-secretary of the former Japanese Legation will be interested to learn that he has been. appointed Secretary of the Japanese Embassy in Washington, and will leave Japan for that post at the end of April.

It is stated that if, in future, any Korean bas a grievance against a foreign subject and wishes to obtain redress, the complaint must be lodged at the offices of the Resident-General.

A telegram dated Tokio, March 5th indicates that the proposal for the unification of the Korean and. Japanese Customs will receive the support of the principal political organizations in Japan and will not be opposed by any organization of consequence .

1t is rumored that on the retirement of Sir Earnest Satow from the post of British Minister to China in the coming spring, Sir John Jordan stands a good chance of receiving the appointment to this Important post.

On the 28th instant. the opening ceremony of the Residency General was held at the Japanese Army Headquarters and on the fo1lowing five days Marquis Ito instructed the various Residents in their duties. At this occasion nearly all the prominent officials of both the Korean and the Japanese Government were present, as well as almost all of the foreign representatives and residents of Seoul and Chemulpo. Quite a number of the Japanese and foreign residents of Chemulpo came up to Seoul by the 1:30 p.m. train.

It is reported that General Hasegawa and his staff will pay a visit to Japan about the middle of next month, in order to be present at the military review which is to be held in Tokyo on the 30th of April.

The piece of corner property which the Y.M.C.A. has been trying to buy for over a year has at last been secured. In an unofficial capacity some of the leading Government Officials assisted in bringing about an agreement between the owners and the Y.M.C.A. Board of Directors. A rate of yen 200.00 per kan and the privilege of removing the houses, worth about yen 25.00 or yen 30.00 per kan was the final ‘price agreed upon.

Rev. D. M.. McRae of Ham Heung has arrived in Seoul and is making a short stay here.

[118] We congratulate Rev. and Mrs. Eugene Bell of Kwangju on the birth of a son on Wednesday March the 7th.

Mrs. Dr. J. Bunter Wells of Pyeng Yang and daughter have been visiting Seoul.

Rev, Dr. J.. S. Gale leaves Seoul on furlough on March the 10th. He will visit Switzerland where he will meet his family and expects to arrive in New York in August. After a year at home he expects to return, and it is hoped that he will bring his family with him.

The police force in Korea has recently been under the control of three separate authorities--ie:-- the Japanese gendarmes, the Korean Police Department, and the Police Advisor. These three divisions are now to be united and placed under one control.

The members of the Central Police station have been going through a course of drill from the 4th Instant, and are also being taught the Japanese language.

Mr. Suh O Soon. the President of a Korean Railway Company (the South Chung Chong RR Company) requested of the Department of Agriculture & Commerce permission to build a railway in that province.

The Commissioner of Customs for Chemulpo was acting chief Commissioner for Korea until the arrival of the Chief Commissioner with Baron .Megata from Japan.

The Governor of Kyeng Ki province informs the Home Office that in spite of his prohibition a number of Japanese propose to build houses in Ansang district.

Trials of those suspected of complicity in the attack on Mr. Yi Keun Taik are being held daily. The authorities believe that a conspiracy against all the cabinet ministers will eventually be brought to light.

The epidemic of small-pox in the city has assumed serious dimensions and we are told that many of the victims are Japanese.

A landslide near the South Gate railway station on the 4th instant resulted in the death of two Korean coolies.

It is stated that the Educational Department has asked the mayor of the City of Seoul to plan for the setting aside of some of the vacant land outside the East Gate and near the Han river for the establishment of an experimental agricultural station and school.

The Koreans in San Francisco have started a newspaper which they have called 공립신보 and which is devoted to Korean interests in America and Korea. At the present time the management is in the hands of Mr. Song Sok Jun of this city who is temporarily staying in San Francisco.

It is rumored that the Japanese Military authorities have found an easy route for a railroad from Ham Heung to the sea and that the railroad will be begun at once and finished in a few months.

On March 10th Mr. Pak Chai Soon laid before the Emperor certain proposals for improvement in the internal administration of Korea.

Commencing from the 11th instant the Nippon Yusen Kaisha will resume its service between Japan and Vladivostok.

[119] Percy M. Beesley, Esq., Architect, formerly of the firm of Alger and Beesley, Shanghai, recently spent a ten days sojourn in Seoul. He is working on plans for the new Y.M.C.A. building and will later take them to America for the approval of the Hon. John Wanamaker who has agreed to furnish funds for its erection. The property upon which this structure is to be built has been purchased near Chong No, a little East of the Central square. It measures 120 by 144 feet and was purchased with money donated by residents of Korea. Colonel Hyun Hung Taik gave yen 5000.00, Hon. E. V. Morgan yen 5000.00; and Dr. Brown, Mr. Hayashi, Dr. Takaki, Sir John Jordan and others have been most generous in affording substantial aid.

In the Osaka Chiho Saibansbo yesterday, says the Japan Chronicle of Wednesday last, judgment was delivered in the action brought by the family of the late Rev. H. G. Appenzeller of Lancaster, Pennsylvania, U.S.A., against the Osaka Shosen Kaisha, for damages amounting to Y 10,850. The defendant company was ordered to pay Y 8,000 to each member of the family, Mrs. Appenzeller and her four children, costs to be borne equally by the two parties. As will be remembered, the ground of claim was that the Rev. H. G. Appenzeller left Chemulpo on June 11th , 1902, by the O.S.K. steamer “Kumagawa-maru’’ for Mokpo. On the voyage, at 10 o’clock on the evening of the same day, the steamer came into collision with the “Kisogawa-maru,” also belonging to the Osaka Shosen Kaisha, when the “Kumagawa-marn” was sunk. Mr. Appenzeller was drowned and his body was not recovered.-K. D. N.

It is understood that Minister Sim Sang Hoon, who was arrested under suspicion of knowing something with regard to the attack on the War Minister, is to be released from the Supreme Court within the next day or two as no evidence can been produced to implicate him in the matter.

The agitation against paying taxes to Mr. Megata’s nominees in the provinces seems to be gaining ground and disturbances on this account are of daily occurrence. The Koreans object to paying taxes to Japanese.

From the Seoul Press we learn that Mr. Soeda, the President of the Japanese Industrial Bank (Nippon Kogyo Ginko) paid a visit to Seoul with a purpose of ascertaining business and commercial prospects in Korea. We hear that his investigations being satisfactory he has decided to establish a Branch Office here with a capital of Yen 7,500,000. It is said that in conjunction with the Dai Ichi Ginko the new bank will act as a central financial organ of Korea; that is, the Dai Ichi Ginko having the right of issuing bank notes does not advance money for long periods on the securities of immovables, while the Nippon Kogyo Ginko will advance money principally to public bodies on the securities of Immovables, and if required to the Korean Government. It is thought by this cooperation the two batiks will conduce to the lessening of the financial strain which is now prevailing throughout the country.

[120] It is rumoured that some Japanese capitalists in Seoul, in conjunction with a company in Tokyo, intend to establish a Motor Car Company in this city, for the purpose chiefly, we understand, of transporting goods.

It is with great pleasure that we welcome the return to Seoul of Mr. Rehrberg, formerly secretary of the Russian Legation here. We understand that he is now occupying the Russian Legation premises.

We are glad to note that Rev. F. R. and Mrs. Hillary, of the English Church Mission, arrived safely in Seoul by train from Fusan, Monday March the 3rd. They both look none the worse for their well-earned furlough in England.

We have much pleasure in extending our heartiest congratulations to Mr. and Mrs. E. Martel on the birth. of their daughter (Marie-Louise, Francoise Antoinette) which took place on Sunday March, the 4th.

We are glad to report that the Minister for War, Mr. Yi Keun Taik, has practically recovered from the wounds that were recently inflicted on him and there is a likelihood of his early discharge from the hospital.

We understand that a Mr. Yamaguchi, an engineer of the Japanese Department of Agriculture, has been appointed to superintend the erection of the iron foundry that is shortly to be established here.

As the tax payers of Syon-san (North Kyong Sang) have assumed a threatening attitude Japanese gendarmes have been despatched thither.

Work has again begun on the Seoul-Gensan railway and considerable progress is being made in levelling the road-bed, cutting down hills, raising embankments, etc. It is not yet stated when the road will be completed but it looks as though the road will be put through with the usual despatch shown by the Japanese. It is hoped that as there is no war urging extraordinary haste the road will be put through with more care and thoroughness than was shown in some of the other railroad work completed by them.

Messrs. Yi Mun Wha and Pak Yong Sung who were arrested for expressing their views, in a memorial to the Emperor, relative to the treaty of November 17th were released from prison on March the 27th. As to the reasons for their long detention nothing is said, but certainly the allowing of freedom of speech will tend to the benefit of Japan in the end and such lengthy detentions ought for her own good to be explained.

According to reports from North Korea Chinese bandits are doing practically as they like in Ham-kyeng and North Pyeng Yang provinces.

The personal friends of Bishop Corfe will be interested to learn that he is now on a return journey to the Far East. He will probably proceed to Peking and, for some time, assist Bishop Scott in the work of his Diocese.

No. 4 (April)

Are the Koreans Increasing in Numbers?   121

The Three Wise Sayings  124

A Visit to Seoul in 1975  131

Biblewomen  140

The Carnduff-Wilson Wedding  147

Robert Arthur Sharp  148

Mr. Launcelot Pelly  151

Editorial Comment  152

News Calendar  158




APRIL, 1906.



Are the Koreans Increasing in Numbers?


It will be remembered that I wrote on this subject some weeks since expressing the belief that the Koreans are not increasing in numbers. The editor of the REVIEW thought that my statements were lacking in facts sufficient to prove my conclusion. This I admit without argument, since it was not my purpose in writing the article to try to prove beyond question the views I hold, but to bring the subject up for thought on the part of those who are interested in the Koreans, so that some one will be led to investigate the facts and give us all the light that it is possible to have on this very interesting subject.  

As I said before it is very difficult to get facts in Korea. The people are so superstitious that I found it impossible in many instances to get even the age of men and the number of their children. I have found no difficulty in getting these figures from Christians but the unbelievers in many cases were afraid to give their age and the number of children which had been born to them. This only goes to prove what I said in the former article that it is difficult to get at the facts on the subject. However I have been able to get answers from one hundred and fifty-two men which will I think afford sufficient evidence to reach the conclusion that the Koreans are not increasing in numbers.

In trying to get at the facts I always asked the [122] following questions: ‘‘What is your age? How many children have been born to you? How many are living? How many are dead?” The youngest man among the one hundred and fifty-two interviewed is thirty-three years and the oldest seventy-six, making an average of a little more than fifty years. To these one hundred and fifty-two men have been born six hundred and thirty-six children, two hundred and eighty-seven of whom are living while three hundred and forty-seven are dead. It will be seen from the above figures that far more than half of the children born die before the father reaches the age of fifty-one years. This in itself does not prove that. the population is not increasing; but when you take into consideration the fact that the number of living children does not equal the number of parents that gave them birth it is proof positive that the population is decreasing instead of increasing.

As I said above, I interviewed one hundred and fifty-two men. It goes without saying that all these men have at least one wife, hence we must multiply one hundred and fifty-two by two which gives us three hundred and four. There being only two hundred and eighty-nine living children to take the place of these three hundred and four parents we have a decrease of fifteen. Certainly if the parents do not leave two children to take their places the population cannot be on the increase.

In my search for these facts I was very much surprised to find so many men of the above mentioned average age who have no children. Out of the one hundred and fifty-two interviewed eighteen of them have had. no children. This impressed me as being an unusually large per cent of married men to be without children, but as I have not made a study of the subject among other people I will not say that it is really larger than usual; I only raise the question here in the hope that some one who is informed will answer it for us. Just in this connection the thought occurs to me that this may be one of the evil results of child marriage. This however is not within the sphere of my present investigation and I only mention it here with the hope that some one will [123] find time to look into the facts and give us the results of their investigation.

Some who may not agree with my conclusions on this subject will likely raise the cry of “hasty induction” and say that one hundred and fifty-two cases are not sufficient to prove my position. I am willing that the case shall be investigated to the utmost limit and if it can be proven that I am wrong and that the Koreans are actually increasing in numbers no one will rejoice more in the fact than I. It is only with a desire to better the condition of the people and help them to increase that I have raised the question at all. In gathering the above figures I have had the one thought in view of learning the truth, with no effort on my part to prove the position taken in my previous article. Some one may wish to know where I got my figures, whether they are local or somewhat distributed over a wide range of territory. To this I will answer that they have been collected mostly from country people living in four counties in Kyeng-keui and Kang-won Provinces. My figures have been gathered from the village people in one of the most healthful parts of the country. I doubt not that like investigation in Seoul and in other cities of the country would reveal a much worse state of the case than is shown in the above figures.

If these articles will lead to a study of the whole subject and cause the missionaries and teachers in Korea to take the matter up and instruct the Koreans so that they may rear more of their children I shall feel well repaid for all the time that 1 have given to it.

Ever since I came to Korea I have been impressed with the lack of any thing like real parental and family love as it is understood in Christian countries. This is seen no where more clearly than in the subject of the death of the children. Often when I was collecting statistics and some one reported a large number of children born and most of them dead, the whole crowd would laugh as though it were the biggest joke of the season. Often when I asked for the number of children born the answer was the number now living: “What use are the [124] dead ones” the father. would say with no more apparent concern than most men would speak of so many pigs that died last winter.

Among the one hundred and fifty-two men interviewed the largest number of children reported .by any one man, was fifteen, thirteen of whom were dead; the next largest number reported by any one was fourteen with twelve of them dead. There were two or three others reporting as many as twelve born but in all the one hundred and fifty-two there is but one reporting as many as six living children.




The Three Wise Sayings.


Once upon a time—a long, long while ago of course, for nothing wonderful happens now-a-days, or next door, when people of faith are few, and prophets are only honored afar—a merchant who by one fortunate transaction after another had made quite a little fortune, decided to take a. journey to China to buy rare silks and brocades and other foreign goods with which to enlarge his stock and so increase his business.

Of course he was rather anxious about the success of his ventures, and so on his arrival in Pekin he went to consult the soothsayers just as anybody would in an important matter like that. He soon found that wisdom was a pretty expensive commodity, and that if he wanted the best he must pay high. Youn, for that was his name, understood that well enough. He never sold good silks at 1ow rates. and he could not expect the wise men to sell their wares for less, and besides he knew quite well that whatever one buys whether silks or wisdom it is always good policy to buy the best which may be depended on to wear better and be the cheaper in the end. But for all that he opened his eyes very wide, and drew a long breath at the price they demanded. Ten thousand Yang! The third of all he had, But his faith [125] was strong, arid so though with many a qualm he laid down his hard earned money to receive not a pony load of documents, or even a Chinese manuscript full of prophecies, advice and directions, but was told simply this: “Take the narrow path and not the broad road.”

“Now what is the use of that in buying silks? quoth he, “How is a poor man to find his way to fortune with such a sign board?’’ Turn it over and over in his mind as he might he could make nothing of it and what is more he became so confused and worried, that at length the harmless sentence seemed to him full of dark shadowings of evil, and he found he could get no rest, no peace of mind without going again to the soothsayers for more light. Needless to say, they demanded a second ten thousand Yang. His heart sank as he saw his little fortune melting away like snow in the hot rays of the spring sun, but what at first had seemed to him as a wise precaution, appeared now as an absolute necessity, and so with sighs and regrets, but none the less the second ten thousand Yang was passed over into the fat purse of the mutangs. Alas to what profit? The second answer no better than the first, only added to his difficulty. He was merely told that all the animals were his friends. Of what use was that, pray, to cost a poor fellow the third of his fortune? Who cares for the friendship of animals, what are they more than chattels, how can they help a man on to long life and good health, plenty of sons, or success in business? “Friends indeed: Who ever heard of such a friendship?”      ·

The poor fellow was clearly more in a muddle than ever and the only light he had merely served to show him how much in the dark he was. But after all that is often the case with people who go seeking light, its first gleam only makes them realize their darkness more distressingly than ever, and sometimes this frightens them so they extinguish the taper and prefer not to see, for it is only when light begins to search it that darkness of all sorts begins to look most hideous. Poor Youn was more troubled than ever, he could make nothing of the oracular sentences that had cost him so much, and he now felt [126] more and more strongly that no matter at what price he must learn what the oracles were darkly trying to teach. The purchase of silk and the making of a fortune now seemed to him a very inferior affair. “No matter how poor I may become,” thought he, “though I may not add a single roll of silk to my stock, if I can only learn how to avoid misfortune, or to attain happiness.” So the simple fellow actually went again to the soothsayers and begging them to give him a clear teaching he paid down his last cash. But though he had given so much the reply this time was even more enigmatical than before. He was bidden to stoop low when he entered his own gate. And now he had not even a cash to pay his way back to his own country, and he must either beg or starve as he had learned no trade or handicraft, and had not the strength for coolie work. “What a fool,” said everybody. He became more and more miserable, and was at length reduced to the last extremes of distress, when one day while pondering over his ill fortune it occurred to him to try to put literally into practice the words of the wise men which having cost him all had hitherto availed no-thing. So choosing the first narrow path he followed it till he found a narrower, and so on and on far beyond the city and its surrounding fields. At the end of three days be found himself in a desolate place among the mountains where bare gigantic rocks stood threateningly around him and seemed to shut him in. A gruesome silence lay like a wizard’s spell on everything. The only sound, the wailing of the wind, or the harsh call of a bird of prey. There was certainly nothing on which hope could be nourished in a scene like this. He was now extremely hungry, having been unable to beg anything on such a narrow and unfrequented road, and as he stood there looking about, very doubtful what to do, he heard the heavy rumble of thunder. This and the blackness of the sky portended a storm so he looked about for shelter and saw a narrow crevice in the face of the mountain, which proved to be the entrance to a cave. Entering· he found quite a large chamber. but with this discovery another was forced upon him. Nothing more nor less than [127] that this was a tiger’s den, for there were low snarling and hustling sounds in the dark recesses of the cave and he was soon able to see the forms of tiger cubs rolling about in playful struggles. The poor man now gave up all hope. To escape alive would be impossible, for he would certainly be tracked and destroyed before he had gone more than a few miles after the parent beast, now away, should return. Such was his despair combined with the exhaustion of hunger and fatigue that he gave up all thought of escape, and sank down on the floor of the cave reckless of what might happen. Just then the second saying of the mutangs flashed in his mind, “Remember that the animals are your friends.” “Let us see,” thought he bitterly, “how friendly these tiger’s dam will be when she returns to her den.” Now as he sat there he spied some remnants of antelopes flesh which he greedily devoured, before he was noticed by the cubs, but at length in a short pause in their play they spied their strange visitor, and though at first quite as much startled and frightened as he, after a little when they found that he meant them no harm they gradually came nearer and nearer and were soon gambolling at his feet. Such was his apathy as to his own condition that he soon found himself laughing at their antics, admiring their graceful movements, their beautiful fur, and their soft round little bodies. At this point who but the old mother tiger stole up to the entrance with rage and fear smelling the bated scent of a man, and sure some hunter had entered her den and killed her brood. But no, there were the cubs at play, and though she spied the man, he was quite unarmed, and looked so poor, wretched and harmless sitting there in apparent friendship and confidence actually playing with her babies, that she apparently gave up her suspicions and all hostile intentions. Who can tell what cerebrations took place in her tigerish brain; but whatever they were, she entered with a gentle purr and when be expected to be instantly torn to pieces, she only nosed him over, rubbed up against him according to the most approved modes of friendly expression among felines, and then proceeded to fondle her cubs who forthwith fell to [128] squabbling over their mother. When be found himself really treated as one of the family the poor man’s astonishment was great indeed, and he began to think the wise men had told the truth and that he was in the right way. ‘‘Alas/’ said he, “my own kind have behaved to me little better than wild animals, and I should soon have died had not these kind tigers befriended me. Daily they brought him flesh, and he gradually came to enjoy his life in the mountains with the wild creatures who seemed to look upon him as one of themselves. He was dressed in skins, drank only water from the spring, fed upon wild honey, nuts, berries, the game brought by his hosts; and slept in a perfumed bed of dry leaves. He learned the speech. of the beasts and birds, the properties of the herbs. and the plants growing in that wild place, and spent whole nights under the solemn heavens studying the stars and communing with the Unseen. A beautiful quietness came more and more upon him. In the holy calm of the desert apart from the busy little hordes of men agitated with a thousand trifles, he learned patience and peace, and to weigh by just standards the comparative importance of the things of time and eternity, of soul and sense, and among the things of sense he learned to value what man had made, least, and those that make for uplift more than those that stimulate pride and passion. So there alone the man learned daily.

One day the tigers came back from a hunt and dropped at his feet a great ruby of wonderful lustre, a jewel worth many fortunes, fit for the great Emperor himself.

The man being a merchant was able to guess somewhere near its true value. The habit of years made his pulses leap. With this he could return home, live in luxury to the end of his days, and feed all his poor relations and friends. Yet he had now been so long alone that he shrank with a sort of fear from the society of men, their envy, malice, spite, greed and jealousy, the sickening routine of forms and ceremonies that had outlived their use, which he had cast off in his free life. So he put the stone in his bosom only plucking it out now and then to enjoy its noble color, deep, warm, generous, constant [129] like the love of a great true heart, and its brilliant light that seemed to bubble up and overflow, shining brighter the darker the spot in which it lay. He often thought of his wife; but that thought was full of pain. Had she remained constant, was she still alive? He dreaded the changes he must surely find. He was no doubt very cowardly and weak. At length one night as he sat on a cliff, the wind wailing round him, his mind in state of conflict and storm quite in harmony with it, a voice close at his ear seemed to bid him return and take his place among his fellows, the children of labor and sorrow. “Do thy share in the world’s work,” it seemed to say, “Nor weakly shirk thy part, go, thou art needed now!” It is good to know one is needed, there is nothing that so braces a man’s heart to resolve on his arm to action as that. So he set out forthwith and always choosing the narrow paths, avoided tramps and robbers who followed the crowds for purposes of plunder. He disposed of his jewel for a great price at the capital and made his way to the little town where his home was.

Things there indeed had reached a crisis. His pretty young wife had repulsed the suitors who one after another coveted the tidy hard working little woman, so cheerful, modest and quiet, and the snug little house and field which he had left. For a long time she put them off with stories of his speedy return till her own heart failed. At length however in the third year came a man with a will who would marry her off-hand whether she liked or no. She was quite discouraged and who could tell whether her husband might not then be living with some other woman, spending his fortune on her at the capital. But the faithful little thing still put off her importunate lover with one excuse or another till at length the wedding day must be set. But on the very day she managed to fall sick for a month, and then came harvesting when all were too busy, but at last there were no more delays to be invented, the kuksu was made, the guests invited; the people assembled, when word was brought by a wild-eyed boy that Youn was coming, would be there at the gate in a moment. Without a word to a soul the [130] would-be bridegroom slipped a long sharp knife up his sleeve and unseen by anyone in the general confusion, hid under the maru or wooden floor which forms a sort of veranda for the house, upon which those who enter must step. Here he intended to wait and stab the unarmed man at his threshold. Youn came eagerly hurrying up to his gate, his heart beating fast as all the old familiar landmarks came to view. There was the gourd vine climbing over the wall, the persimmon tree that stood in the matang, the white honeysuckle and hawthorn in the hedge. As he neared the gate, the third injunction of the soothsayers flashed across his mind, “Bend low as you enter your own gate.” “I paid dear for those words, let us see what profit there is in them,” said he; so as he entered while the wedding guests stood breathless to see if it were really Youn, and all ago agog to behold what would happen (the poor little wife trembling between joy and fear) he stooped almost to the ground, and there under the maru was the skulking form of the assassin, his glittering knife ready, and cruel murder lowering on his brow. Youn pointed him out, a hundred hands were ready to grasp and hold him; he was carried off at once to the magistrate and securely caged as was meet.

For the rest it can be better imagined than told. For the joy of the long parted, the home coming of the wanderer are not to be described by words. The happy wife was all tears and smiles, and the wedding party was changed to a feast of welcome. Youn’s following years were spent in practising and teaching the moderation, unworldliness and simplicity he had learned in the wilderness. So after all the man had more than his money’s worth and made a good choice when he counted wisdom better than merchandise.

When the story was told one of the listeners said, “To take the narrow and not the broad road, the narrow path of duty rather than the wide well beaten track of ease and pleasure, to dare to work alone, rather than follow the crowd in the popular way is the depth of all wisdom. To learn that animals are our brothers and friends is a long stride on toward the Kingdom of God. [131] And the man who bows at his own door step and reverences his own home is a good well as a good householder, for in the sanctity of the home lies the safeguard of the nation.”

L. H. U.



A Visit to Seoul in 1975.


On a beautiful warm June morning I picked up my valise and followed my trunk to the Seoul-Fusan Railroad Station. There after waiting about ten minutes, a man in a bright brass buttoned uniform with a megaphone in his hand suddenly appeared at the head of the great marble staircase, and made. the building roar with, “All aboard for the 10:30 express to Seoul—only stops at Taikoo, Taichun, Suwon, and Yontongpo.” Of course this was uttered in Korean, but I concluded that that was the meaning of it.

Toward sunset I found myself at Southgate Station in Seoul. Getting off here from the train I was soon comfortably seated. in a pretty little rubber tired coupe and up the beautiful Willow Avenue we went, and finally I got off in front of a large eight story building which I was told to be the Grand Hotel. Two porters in neat uniforms hurried out and took charge of my luggage, and a few minutes· later I was led up to the clerk’s counter.

The clerk asked me in well accentuated English, “Mr. James B. Smith, of New York, I suppose ?”

“You’re right, Sir,” was all I could say.

“What kind of a room would you like, Sir?” was his next question.

“Oh, I am not particular,” I said, “as long as I have a suite of two rooms with a private bath, and the rooms bright and sunny.”

“All right, Sir.” Then turning to the porter, “This gentlemen up No. 37.”

The elevator stopped at the third story, and I soon stepped into a beautifully furnished room, second to none of the best at Waldorf. Hard wood floor with Turkish designed rugs here and there to match a unique and Oriental ceiling and wall. About the middle of the ceiling hung a large green chandelier with pink electric bulbs, the whole representing a leaf and flower of a lotus. A bookcase, shelved cabinet, a desk and few small tables, (all of native black teakwood, some carved and some inlaid with mother of pearl), several comfortable chairs, a sofa, and a few paintings on the wall and other articles of decoration, all in beautiful harmony of color and proportion, gave a rich and magnificent and yet neat and unique appearance, pleasing to the eye as well as to the inner sense of esthetic beauty. My bed room was likewise rich and artistically fitted up to meet every convenience, comfort and taste a person could wish for.

All this made me soon feel at home, which means much for a tourist of the world to say, 1 was more especially struck with the polite and accommodating tone and manner of every one in general.

That evening as I walked into the dining room, my steps were guided by the strains of Il Troubador that issued forth from the string orchestra behind the palms at the farther end of the room. I was almost dumbfounded for a second on seeing at the table next to mine, old Phil, our Captain of ‘65 and with whom I took my “dip” at U. C. in ‘66. He saw me coming in, stared at me for a moment, then suddenly rose and dived at me as if for a “five yard gain” with an outstretched hand, and hurriedly saying, “I’ll be hanged if this isn’t Jim, what in the world are you doing out here?”

”Hallo, Phil, old boy, nothing at all, except that I am taking an around the world tour ‘in the world.’ But what brought you here? I thought you were in Australia fishing pearls?” ·           ·

“Well, I am on my way .home on leave of absence, and thought I would pay a short visit here. But come on over here, and let’s get rid of our .dinner first,” leading me to his table.

After dinner we went up together into my new quarters, and made the night short in recalling old times.

[133] Breakfast over the next morning, as had been suggested the night before, and as Mr. Ye, the proprietor of the Hotel, was condescending enough to let us have his little runabout auto, we started out to take in some of the city together.

And a city well worth taking in it was. Perhaps not so large and crowded as London or New York, but certainly more beautiful than Paris. The streets all paved with asphalt and cleanly swept, wide stone sidewalks, clear-cut rows of buildings, the noiseless electric cars, and the different avenues some with double rows of trees and some intersected with a beautiful square or circle, seemed more artistically arranged in their Oriental charm than those we had been accustomed to seeing in the Occident.

Phil and I coasted down Park Avenue where the mansions of the rich and tony stood on either side of a long row of flower beds. Here it seemed as if beauty and nature had been reproduced in their minor details and splendor. This avenue, I was told, was originally the great ditch, but now the modern sewerage system made way for this outer adornment.

We rode to the end of this avenue where it terminated at the east wall. The six century old wall and the eight city gates with some of the arches enlarged and restored presented another feature of the city. The wall at most parts was clothed green with ivy and at some places with honeysuckle and a peculiar specie of pink and cream colored climbing wild rose. This wall forming a perfect ring seemed to link in the North and South mountains as protection to the seat of the nation’s ruler. And it appeared but natural to us that within this wall was what they termed the inner city, and without the outer, just as much as we have been accustomed to saying, “Up-and-down-town New York.” The Inner represented the artistic uniformity, and the Outer was more adapted to the purer charms of natural scenery and beauty.

On the following day we went up the South Mountain and took a bird’s eye view of the Inner and Outer Seoul. [134] The great new Palace built of renaissance style; the Gothic Cathedrals and the church buildings; the Imperial, The Seoul, and the Great Eastern Universities; the Public Library; the Y.M.C.A. building; and the Government edifices; and the business sky-scrapers; all stood out like a high-relief decoration of this modern Rome.

Coming down we stopped at the various resorts, and watched the crowd, some at different games and some getting a glass of lemonade or some other refreshments. Then Phil led the way to one of the coolest and handsomest pavilions, and there we sat down for a light luncheon.

Below, the rush .and bustle of city life; here the cool mountain shades, the silvery falls of water, the singing of birds in all their woodland melody, and the students of poetry clustered here and there in the different nooks: all made a happy contrast of the two phases of life, the active and the beautiful.

We lingered at this point during the whole afternoon; and at about six o’clock while watching the glorious sunset over Lone Tree Hill, we made our way slowly down to the foot of the mountain where our auto was waiting to take us back to our hotel. Here it might be well for me to say that the Lone Tree Hill above mentioned is no longer a “Lone Tree Hill” in fact, as this name was given when at one time there was only one lone tree on top of the hill; and now the whole hill is covered green with pines and oaks.

We returned to our hotel feeling quite satisfied with our day’s experience, and after a hearty dinner, were ready to see and learn more. .So Phil and I decided to go to the opera.

The Opera de l’Orient was a great rectangular building of polished Kang Wha stone in the doric style of architecture, and was situated near Bell Street. We were quite struck with its exterior magnificence and the interior decorations. Parsifal was on for the night; and after the opera was over I felt that I was in a stranger land than I had first thought. Everything seemed to have that intensely moral tone and highly refined air. [135 ] The people that came to the opera were not the same as one would find in an Occidental audience. There were no ladies in sight, as they were seated in the boxes on either side. The men were dressed in white (as it was summer), and their white silk turumakis and bamboo bats made quite a uniform appearance. They did not have the mark of wealth stamped upon them, but their dress showed refined simplicity. Another noticeable fact was that there was no talking and chatting during curtains. They seemed to have come to get the full benefit of the performance, and not merely for the fashion of coming. As to the opera itself, the singing, acting, music and scenery were all superb.

Before I go further, I might mention here, that I found this to be strictly a temperance city. I· remarked to Phil, that I could not see any saloons, bars or wine shops, any where, in the streets, near the stations or theatres, and at the pleasure resorts or hotels. Phil told me that there were almost no liquor, wine or any other intoxicants sold in Seoul, and very little any where else in the whole land. Some thirty years ago special reforms were instituted in this line by the people themselves. The Protestant form of Christianity having become the national religion, the Government and the people put forth their mutual efforts in trying to bring about national reforms. As a result, they say, that in each town and village there is a church or chapel and a school house, and in the large places a number of them .

A person seldom hears any rough language, and in the newspapers one hardly ever hears of any gambling, robbery, murder, or any other crimes. I myself did not see a drunkard on the street while I was there and almost all the people I met were professing Christians.

After the opera was over we came back and laid our program for the next day, and decided to visit some of the Government buildings.

Next morning promised us another fine day, although we thought it would be rather warm. The proprietor of the hotel had made arrangements for us to visit all the government department buildings and what other [136] places of interest we might have time to see. We set out right after breakfast and walked up to Department Street. I could easily see why this street was so called, for there were on either side of this street, that looked to be fully a hundred yards wide and about five hundred long, magnificent buildings from one end to the other. The entrance to each of these department buildings was of the old Korean structure, having three gates, one in the centre larger than the two on either side. At the north end of this street was the Palace entrance formed of three archways of granite, with stone bulwarks above the arches, and a double roof covering the arches. This entrance was the most magnificent and imposing structure I had yet seen anywhere. The high tower built up with roughly dressed huge blocks of stones, and the great archways with their carved bronze gate represented a work of art and mechanical skill. The departmental buildings themselves were of the modified combination of Korean, Gothic, and Grecian architecture; but everything was brought into such harmony with each other, that the structures were perfect even to the most critical eye. One could see in the architecture of these people that they had a keen insight to everything.

We went through the different buildings rather hurriedly; but there were two things that called our special attention. Firstly, just without the Palace entrance, on the right was the State Chapel built of grey stone in the Gothic style, and on the left was the Council Building of brownish red stone in the Roman style. In the former the Emperor himself attends the devotional exercises every morning with all the officials of the land before entering upon any State duties; and in the latter affairs of State are first discussed by the members of the Privy Council (which is elected by the people) and decided by the members of the Cabinet or State Council, Secondly, the Department of Education showed us something new.

There was a side room where one could go in, and by going to a box and holding a tube to his ear and the glasses to his eyes, he could see and hear all that was going in any of the class rooms of any school throughout [137] the whole country. Thus the head department always knew what was going on at all the different branch seats of learning.

Here I shall not attempt to relate all of our experience of that day, but will simply say, that as we went through each of these government departments, we did not find a single clerk that was loafing or conversing idly with another. Everyone seemed to be occupied with his own assigned duty, and yet it seemed that they were not rushing or being rushed through life, and that everything was being systematically and carefully done, and nothing neglected or in arrears.

On the following day we visited the two Libraries, the Imperial and the National. At each of these places they said that there were over a million volumes. I wish I had more time to speak of the works of art displayed and other details at all these different places.

The next day we visited the three great Universities, the names of which I have mentioned here before, The Imperial, The Seoul, and the Great Eastern. Each of these schools boasts an enrollment of ten thousand students. These three great institutions work a great and far reaching influence throughout the land, not only in scientific training and education in the liberal arts, but also in moulding the character of the whole nation. They have had no small share in Christianizing the whole land, they having been the few first to lay down their principal foundation with those sacred words, “Seek. ye first the Kingdom of Heaven,” and thus became not only the three greatest institutions in the Far East, but model institutions.

Sunday came, and there was not a sign, one could say almost, of work or toil any where. Not even a drug store was open. In the morning everyone was at church, and you could not even hire a cab during Church service hour. Even the hard working coolies were dressed up in their best, and were sitting in one of the back pews to receive their weekly spiritual food. One would find a few people enjoying their Sunday afternoon in the  parks and other places in and around the city; and even [138] nature itself seemed to join in this sacred Sabbath day of rest.

Phil and I were advised to go to the Park Avenue church. The style of architecture of this church was very much similar to that of Notre Dame. This church was erected by the wealthy people of Seoul. The whole church was built of marble, each block of stone having a sculptural relief so that the outside walls of the church told the story of the life of Christ. The arch of the facade of this church was a single mass of moulten bronze and gold. The Gothic windows were of Venetian colored glass and gave the pictures of the Crucifixion. The subject of the sermon that morning was, “Whatever we do, ‘Abide in Christ.’” In this sermon, I realized that all the outward and material things were only for the sake of showing our material mind the greatness and power of God manifested through the workings of man and nature, His agent and product, and thus for preparing the way to the spiritual enlightenment and perfection. Perhaps one will think it strange how I understood the sermon when I could not speak the language. It is simple when it is explained. When strange people come to the church, they are asked what language they can understand most easily. I said that English was the only language that I could understand freely, so the usher took me to one of the side pews and handed me a phono-graphic tube that was attached to the seat to put to my ear. Thus as the man in the pulpit preached in Korean, the sermon came to my ear already translated into English—easier than getting ready made clothes. I was told that they had this arrangement for five different languages—Chinese, Japanese, English, French and German.

As I have said heretofore, I found these Koreans profoundly religious—not in the outward form and fashion only, but earnest in their devotion and true to their faith whatever they do. With them, true Christian character holds first place in everything. They are a people faithful in their duties, loving among themselves and kind and hospitable to strangers. [139]

During my short stay there I made many friends among Korean gentlemen, either by meeting them at the hotel, or by calling at their homes with some of Phil’s friends. They are so cordial, and always make you feel that you are really their friend; and I am told that this is not a mere fashion with them. They are the most friendly people,—not just for the time you meet them, but even after you have turned around. Even the very coolies on the streets have no loud rowdy way about them. Every one seemed to have a quiet, polite and gentlemanly manner.

Well this is all I shall have time to speak about now. Should I go into further details or tell of the other parts of the. city, I may not know where to stop;—and as you know time and space is limited.

I am afraid that I have related my first visit to this city in a very irregular, rough and· rambling way, but I have attempted (though not succeeded) to give simply a general impression of Seoul; and my purpose is to show you that, we know not what changes can be wrought through His power, and that nothing is impossible through Him.

In the year 1906 these people had almost lost their independence; but after they had learnt their bitter lesson, they set to work, and depending on no one—no America, no England, no Russia, no Germany, no France, no China, no Japan—but solely depending on their own selves, and on God alone for help, they finally threw off their yoke about forty years ago.               .

That is the secret of this nation’s success; and in my opinion there is no other country more enlightened, and no other people more advanced in spiritual as well as . material development than the few tens of million of this              Land· of the Morning Calm.

May God’s blessing ever continue to be upon her, and keep her always firm in her faith of Him, ad infinitum.

Pardon my making any personal statement, before bidding you “Good-bye,” but Phil and I have decided to take our families out there to reside permanently. My grandfather was originally. a Korean who had been [140] forced to leave that land on account of political difficulties; and I am now happy to go back to Korea, and I have invited Phil to come and join me in my business.







While this important branch of our work is not as satisfactory as we would like to have it, progress has been made during the year. The difficulty of procuring able-bodied, efficient women is great, because of the custom that prohibits young women, or even women in the prime of life, from travelling, and also the fact, that few, comparatively few, can read before they come in contact . with the truths of Christianity and enter the church. Often do we hear that women, who have become Christians, when urged to read, declare that it is a hopeless task to try to do it for “it cannot be done.” If this spirit is still true of those who have come under the influence of the foreign teacher and who have felt the claims of Christ, it is not to be wondered that the Biblewoman finds it difficult to sell her books to those who have not felt those influences. For why should they buy the books if they cannot read them? Then when the offer is made to teach them to read, comes the reply ‘‘We are too busy to learn. We have no time to study: We have no sense.” In spite of the untoward conditions from which the Biblewomen must be taken and taught ; of the difficulties in their wav; they have done not a little towards the hastening of the coming of Christ’s Kingdom in this land. When we remember from whence the Biblewoman comes and to whom she goes, we can have nothing but good to say for them. They are the best that can be had at the present time to serve their generation, but is it ungrateful to look forward to the time when we will be able to employ as Biblewomen, women who have grown [141] up in the church from childhood and who have been educated in our girls’ schools? Consecrated our women are, full of simple child-like faith, they wander over this land telling to the poor women into whose lives there enters little of love and light, of a God who loves them and of a Christ who is the light of the world; doing the very best they can to bring the joy of life into the joyless lives of their sisters.

I cannot do better than allow the superintendents of these women to speak of them and their work. And I will begin with the loving tribute Mrs. McRae, Ham Heung, pays to her Bible woman.

“I wonder if one does not need to be alone in a heathen city almost a hundred miles from the nearest foreign woman, fully to appreciate native Bible women! What their help and companionship has meant to me under these circumstances, it is impossible for me to express.

“Martha Pak was as truly my dear friend and fellow worker as if her skin had been white and. her language my native tongue. The Lord called her home early in August after only half a year of almost perfect· service. Like Paul ‘I thank God on every remembrance’ of her. and tears, more of joy than of pain, come as I think of her earnestness, her charming personality, and untiring zeal in the Master’s service.

“In two months she sold about four hundred gospels which used to be considered a good year’s sale in this province.

“Back and forward among crowded markets .and country villages she went with willing feet often blistered and raw from the rough straw shoes, After a day in the woman’s market I have found her prostrated with weariness, yet never once did 1 hear a word of complaint. She was surely ripe for the kingdom, But you will ask, ‘Have you seen any fruit of her labors?’ Not many days ago Hanna (Miss Robb’s Biblewoman ) returned from a country village which Martha had previously visited selling seventy or more books in two days. There was then one Christian and his family, now, twenty meet together for worship and of these, several told Hanna that Martha’ s gospels had been the means of bringing them to Christ.

“I thank the Bible Societies for one of the best friendships [142] and sweetest memories that can ever form a link in the chain that binds me to Korea.”

We can only wonder at the amount of work done by Mrs. Moose’s Biblewoman. She has been in our employ for five years and from the very first made us marvel at the number of books she sold. As the years go on she seems to develop so that Mrs. Moose is able to write:

“This closes what seems to me the best year’s work that Mrs. Kim has ever done. She has been very faithful in teaching and explaining the gospel as well as in selling it, and the many pieces of fetish she has brought to me from time to time, prove that oftentimes her seed-sowing has been upon good ground. She sells Gospels and does evangelistic work during the day and at night she often walks about two miles to teach some one to read. This I can testify is done in the spirit of joy and not in that of self-sacrifice. Women who consider themselves too old to learn to read sometimes memorise Bible verses and hymns by having Mrs. Kim read these verses to them. She is now teaching, mostly at night, a family of four to read.

“Recently a boy called at my door and enquired for Mrs. Kim. When told that she was out at her work he requested a pen and paper and wrote a note urging Mrs. Kim to come and see his mother soon. Of course, she took the first opportunity to comply with this request. The woman met her at the door saying, ‘When you were here some months ago, I did not care to hear the story you tried to tell me; but since I’ve read the Gospels you sold me, I am so much interested that I want to know more; so please sit down and tell me all about what this book teaches. So it has been in other places, the Gospel was sold or heard months or perhaps years ago and the seeds are just now bringing forth the good fruit.

“When compared with last year Mrs. Kim’s report does not show so large a number of gospels sold if counted by the bindings; but this is more than counter-balanced by the number of “Combined Gospels and Acts” sold. So the proceeds of her sales are much greater than they were last.

“She is deeply interested and often expresses herself as finding a great deal of pleasure in her work. A few days ago she came in bubbling over with joy as she told me of how that day as she sat reading and explaining the Bible a sorceress came in and after hearing the word decided to give up her life of sin and become a Christian. As a [143] proof of her sincerity I have since received a lot of this ‘mootang’s’ outfit .”

The story of Mrs. C. D. Morris’ Biblewoman shows the determination of the woman fired with a thirst for knowledge.        ·

“My Biblewoman in Yeng Byen was telling me her experience and as it shows how one woman learned to read it may be of interest. She said that she was living in the city of Anju and running an inn, where the missionary used to stop as he passed through and where also the Korean helpers often stopped, As she prepared and set before them their food she overheard their conversations, and little by little became interested in this doctrine of which they talked and finally she was convinced that their belief was a true one. She was noted among the Koreans for her devotion to the devil worship and her constancy in her worship. She now turned to the new belief with the same energy and devotion. Although she was busy all day long getting meal after meal for the many travellers as they stopped for a dinner on the way through that busy city, besides taking care of her little child and aged parents she decided that she must learn to read so that she might study for herself this wonderful good news. Where most other Korean women would have said it was impossible and never attempted to learn, she went to work and little by little, between times, she glanced at her book and learned to read. She says, ‘It was by prayer I learned to read. I wanted to know so badly but I had almost no time so the Lord taught me.’ She then began the study of the Gospel of Matthew and she is so enthusiastic in her belief that that is the place for new believers to begin. She has kept on studying between times as she could and has now taken up the women’s work in the wicked city of Yeng Byeng where she is teaching others to read and doing house to house work constantly.

“One of our greatest difficulties is to get the women to learn to read. They make all sorts of excuses to keep from getting down to study so as to be able to read for themselves. It does our hearts good when we do find one so deeply in earnest that though her difficulties are many she does learn to read and urges others to follow the same way. In our far northern work as yet, all so new, only a very small number of the women can read a single word but in a few years we know that this will all be changed and many will read and learn and know. Then we can teach with pleasure and profit. Now it seems [144] that their brains are stiff and useless. Although they understand our words they cannot catch the ideas. Learning to read, even very poorly awakens the intellect and makes them creatures of new minds.”

The story that Mrs. A. F. Robb, Wonsan, tells of her Biblewoman shows that the spirit of the old martyrs is not dead but lives in some of the hearts of the Christian women of Korea. If all our Christian women had the spirit such as Dorcas showed, even while yet young in the faith, what might we not expect in the development of the Church ? Mrs. Robb says:

“When she had been a Christian about five months she felt that it was not right to sell liquor as she had been doing, so she gave up her business and went to another place to escape persecution, as she thought. Here she bought timber and proceeded to build a house. When the people learned she was a Christian they gathered and tore the house down leaving her nothing but the foundation.. During the past summer she has had the joy of seeing three people in this place decide for Christ, through her preaching and the influence of her life.

“Puk Chun county has long been very hard and bitterly opposed to the Gospel, and the lot of a Bib1ewoman there is by no means an easy one. She never complains but is full of anxiety to see more labourers in the field so that all shall have the Gospel. Of late, the people seem more ready to listen than formerly and we trust that the time of harvest is near for this northern part of the country.

“I hope Dorcas may be continued in her work, and that ·with as many books as she can sell and renewed enthusiasm from the last month, which has been largely given to the study of God’s Word, she may do better work than ever.”

Kosi continues to give the same satisfaction as she has in other years as will be seen from the report of her superintendent, Mrs. Wells, Pyeng Yang:

“Mrs. Pak or Kosi has served the past year with the same satisfaction as heretofore. Her work has been mainly at the hospital where for six months she visited daily and taught the Bible mostly to unconverted women. These women come from all over northern Korea and one, whose jaw was removed for cancer, walked 900 li or about 300 miles on foot to be treated. She became a convert in the hospital and it is thought due to the efforts [145] of the Biblewoman. How many others were taught to read and revere the Book of books by her efforts it is          impossible for us to say.

“She made five trips into the country taking about two months of time for them. The details of these trips read like visitation among groups of Apostolic times.

“While in the city she had part in the large classes for women, teaching the Bible to 140 women every day.”

Miss Brown, of the Australian Presbyterian Mission, Fusan, reports that her Biblewomen “Have during the past year been faithful stewardesses of the trust committed to them. Both report a deeper interest on the part of the Korean women in listening to what they had to say, but when these were urged to take a decided stand for Christ and to observe his day, they, as of old, began to make excuse,’ ‘when we get a daughter-in-law in the house, we should believe.’ ‘We should like very much to become Christians but dare not do so for fear of our husbands or sons.’ ‘It is very well for you to preach having nothing else to do; by and by when we have done all our work, we too, shall attach ourselves to a foreigner, and then it will be easy for us to believe.’ These and many others of similar kind are the excuses our Biblewomen daily met, but they are not discouraged, knowing that the Lord is with them. They have told me that were it not for this assurance they simply could not do the work.

“Pak Kyung and Yusil have been helpers together with me in a weekly class for women begun two years ago in a walled city twenty li (seven miles), and a fortnight since we had the pleasure of seeing two members baptized.

“Without the aid of the Biblewomen this work could not have been carried on regular1y, ofttimes when the missionary was unable to visit the city, they have gone out, and their labors have been greatly appreciated by the women.”

Mrs. Adamson of the same mission and station in reporting the work of the two women under her charge says:

“The younger of these Son Mong-hi has been busily at work practically throughout the whole year during which she has told the gospel story to a large number of people, read Scriptures to 555, sold 212 portions and given regular instruction in the native character to a class of women. Most of her time has been devoted to [146] effort around Masanpo where she has won the esteem of the women for whom she labours. The railway facilities have brought Masanpo within easy reach of Fusan and I am hoping in future to be able to keep in close touch with that neighborhood.

“My other Biblewoman, Son-hipaik, who was off duty for three months in the summer, has during her nine months of service lost no opportunity of making known the ‘good news.’ She has read it to 554 women in their own homes, helped to teach un-moon to those desirous of learning to read and sold gospels to the number of 131 copies.    .

“Both Biblewomen have been. conscientious and faithful in the discharge of their duties. It is impossible to estimate fully the value of such work as they are doing. Statistics can at most give but an imperfect idea of the extent and worth of such labours as theirs, without which many lives that are being brightened and lifted up would remain sad and hopeless.”



No. of women employed. l5

Average No. of women read to per week. 528

No. of women taught to read. 145

Scriptures sold.

Bibles --

New Tests; 37

Portions 6212



Our Bible-work has prospered side by side with the regular church work and a report of our common work might be summed up in the words of a report sent to the Rev. Thomas Spurgeon. by one of his churches a few years ago; ”Work going on. Blessing coming down. Converts coming in. Praises going up.”

Progress has been· made but it seems as if we were but on the outskirts of the work and that which has come to pass, is but an earnest of things to come.

One can hardly close a report of Christian work in Korea for the year 1905, without making mention of the movement during the year, towards the uniting of all Protestant mission work in one native church in Korea. At mass meetings held in September, committees representing the various mission bodies and phases of work were appointed to consider plans for the practical working out of the proposed union. . Already newspapers and [147] Sunday school literature have been united, a committee has been appointed to prepare a union hymnal, and some. of the schools and hospital work have been united. We pray that the Master’s mind may be clearly revealed to his servants here and that those servants may have grace. and strength given to do the Master’s bidding in this matter that means so much to the Church of Christ in Korea.

With this spirit of union binding us in our common work, what may we not expect in the way of progress -during the coming year?



The Carnduff-Wilson Wedding.


On the morning of April the 14th Mr. James B. Carnduff of Fusan and Miss Edith Margaret Wilson of Nagasaki were married in Seoul first at the British Consulate and afterwards at the English Church of the Advent.

The bridal party entered the church at eleven o’clock. Miss Wilson who wore a beautiful white satin gown with veil and wreath and carried a lovely shower bouquet entered first bearing on the arm of her father and was followed by her two bridesmaids Miss Gladys Wilson her sister, and Edith Bennett of Chemulpo, both of whom were dressed in pale blue voile. The bridegroom and his brother of Chemulpo had already arrived and were awaiting them at the church, where the husband received his bride from her father’s hands.

Friends had made the church beautiful with floral decorations, and nothing seemed wanting to make the happy day all that could be wished, Seoul may indeed consider itself fortunate to have been selected for such an .auspicious event, and her citizens will think themselves happy to welcome all the young couples in China and Japan, to benefit by her superior advantages, and tie the happy knots in the most fascinating city of the East.





Robert Arthur Sharp.


Probably many would say that his life should be represented by a broken shaft; that it was untimely ended; that his work was only just begun, and not finished. And yet the truer view is that a time arrives in the life of each one of us, when the mark has been reached, or the goal touched, the character finished in the rough, and the probation no longer necessary. Though we study the mystery through our tears, let us not permit them to blind us to the consolation of our Creed, “the resurrection of the body and the life everlasting,” for which this life is only the preparatory stage; and if possible, let us lay hold, with comfort, of the larger hope expressed by St. Paul, in the words, “to die is gain.’’

It will be granted by all who knew our Brother Sharp, that he was a man of “kindliness” or “godliness,” either and both. His was a persistent and eager life, filled to the full with effort, tireless and unremitting. He was gentleness itself to all others, but merciless to himself. Although our acquaintance with him in the Mission has been short,—just under three years,—yet it would be vain for us to imagine that such a character as his had been but recently attained, and only lately arrived at its fullness. His origin, his parents, his brothers and sisters, the whole trend of his life, and his various occupations up to the time of his acceptance by our Missionary Society, all betoken a man in the making, whose course and end should be devoutly marked by us.

Brother Sharp was born in Caistorille, Ontario, March 18th 1872. His parents were both God-fearing in heart and practice; His father was a Local Preacher in the Methodist Church, and held an office in the local government of the town, Brother Sharp himself was brought up on the farm with five brothers, and three sisters . One of his brothers is in the direct ministry of the Church, [149] and the occupations and life work of all the family, speak of sterling native endowments. Our brother was active in Christian work, under whatever phase it presented itself to him, eager to take his stand unmistakably on the side of Christ, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord, winning souls, and especially attracted toward and at tractive to the young whether in the home land, or in Korea.

Later in life he evidently felt a call for larger service, and began to prepare himself for it in the Brooklyn Union Missionary Training Institute, from whence he went to Oberlin College, spending three years there in solid work. While he was in Oberlin he had charge of a church in Penfield, Ohio. His thoughts. prayers, and missionary addresses for a number of years showed that South America would probably be his future field of service, and yet all missionary work and phases were keenly interesting to him. At last he was chosen and commissioned by the Methodist Episcopal Church for her work in Korea. He came among us not quite three years ago, and was married to his fiancée, Miss Alice Hammond, who had preceded him to the field as a missionary of the Woman’s Foreign Missionary Society of the same Church. Then fol1owed almost three years of quiet but strenuous effort, during the first year, devoting- himself to the study of the language, the pastorate of the First Methodist Episcopal Church of Seoul, and teaching in the Boy’s School. During the last two years, he and his wife have stood up bravely under a burden all too great to be asked of anyone, a circuit several hundred miles in breadth, dotted with Christian groups, numbering over one hundred churches, and a membership of over two thousand.

They had their new home to build, classes of helpers to superintend and train. They were isolated and alone, away from fellow missionaries and worked, ‘“not with eye-service, as men pleasers, but as the servants of Christ doing the will of God from the heart.” In spite of all this loneliness and weight of care, we ever found him cheerful, and though pressed on every side yet not cast [150] down, never irritable under stress of work, or perplexity, not impatient, but equipped, “strengthened with all might in the inner man” by a Power not his own. Nearly one year ago his life was in great danger from a Japanese mob. and Japanese sympathizing. Koreans, necessitating the sending of gendarmes from Seoul to his rescue. He lived in a section of Korea where popular uprisings are frequent.

It is quite notable the amount of work one so recently on the field was able to turn off. This can in great part be accounted for by an unusually methodical and orderly mind. He had a system of wall maps and charts which were patent to all, to his helpers as well as to himself, and his journal which was kept with unusual neatness and care is now found to be so complete that it is invaluable as a reference to his successor in enabling him to grasp the work Brother Sharp was called upon to lay down so suddenly and unexpectedly. His last illness with which he was taken down while in the interior and alone can now be studied in his Journal, and his last tired footsteps can be traced over the mountain passes, and among the hamlets of the plains where his groups were located. He with his servant and one helper were all taken. ill together with Typhus fever. He reached his home in Kongchu on a Tuesday, on the fifth day of the illness, after a long ride, burning with fever, tied into the saddle of his faithful ‘‘Dick,” who had shared in the itinerancy with him. Mrs. Sharp was also in the far interior, but in another region, engaged in teaching the women, and did not know of his illness, and could not reach him until summoned home, where she arrived on Thursday. The nearest doctor was in Seoul and saw him for the first time on Saturday, the eighth day of the fever. After a painful struggle for life, and a wearying delirium with which he seemed to be worn out, and in which he went over again the weary labors of the months past, he passed away from our companionship in the flesh on the seventeenth day of his illness. A new appointment was read off for him by the Bishop of souls, and he rested from his labors, though [151] verily his seed sowing and works will follow him and widen in their effect. His life will bear study and imitation.

“Peace to the just man’s memory; let it grow

Greener with years, and blossom through the flight

Of ages; let the mimic canvass show

His calm benevolent features; let the light

Stream on his deeds of love, that shunned the sight

Of all but heaven; and in the book of fame,

The glorious record of his virtues write,

And hold it up to men, and bid them claim

A palm like his, and catch from him the hallo wed flame.”



Mr. Launcelot Pelly.


Universal regret and sorrow both at the American Mines and in the Foreign Communities where he was known is expressed over the sudden and unexpected death of Mr. Launcelot Pelly.

He retired at night in apparently good health and good spirits and did not wake again. His death is ascribed to heart failure.

He was an Englishman that did credit to his country and brought honor to her name by his uprightness and integrity. He held the important position’ of Auditor at the American Mines.

His life here had made him much loved even by the Korean and Chinese miners as well as by all his associates.              ·           ·

His remains were committed to the earth at the Chemulpo Cemetery, and the funeral service was conducted by Bishop Turner who delivered an impressive address to the many people who followed the coffin.

He has left behind him a mother and several brothers and sisters.

The Pyeng Yang correspondent of the Seoul Press says, [152]

“The writer of these lines wishes to put on record his testimony of the high character, gentle life, splendid example and thorough service of Mr. Pelly. His native country—Great Britain—can well be proud of such a man as Launcelot Pelly, and his life has been lived to a good purpose.”



Editorial Comment.


In our last issue we had .occasion to comment on the new loan of ten million yen that has been obtained from Japan. It is asserted by some that this is desired simply by the Korean Government and that they and they alone are responsible. Under present circumstances such a statement is absolutely farcical and will not be accepted by anyone. The Japanese themselves have not offered any such suggestion and most assuredly if they thought that it would be given any credence at all they would be among the first to deny it after having assumed guidance of this people.

In our last issue we asserted that it was a pity that the uses to which this loan was to be put had not been made public.

Since then the Seoul Press Weekly, which is published from one of the Customs buildings, seems to voice the sentiment of the Japanese and must be looked upon at least as a semi-official organ, says:

“The most important subject, which, in the political world of Korea, has of late occupied the public mind, is the advance of a loan of yen 1,0,000,000 to the Korean Government by the Nippon Kogyo Ginko, which by the advice, and intervention of the Resident-General and the Financial Advisor, has been obtained upon favourable conditions. Therefore with this fact, and the prospective and increasing welfare of the Korean nation in view, both parties to the negotiations are to be congratulated upon their success.

“Of this loan, five million yen is to be paid to the Korean Financial Department within this month. This fact is causing a keen interest among the Powers, and the [153] first question that is naturally asked is ‘How and for what purpose is this sum to be employed ?’

“It is a large item in Korea’s finance, and requires strict probity on the part of those to whom it is entrusted. It is of course a foregone conclusion that the authorities concerned had already formed their plans and line of policy before the conclusion of the New Contract advancing the loan. Perhaps our opinion on this subject may appeal to those who are interested in Korean affairs.

“As its name (the Loan for New Undertakings) implies, we are informed that this money shall be used solely for agricultural and commercial extension and improvements. The next point that asserts itself is ‘Will the Government voluntarily undertake such public works as will be conducive to agricultural and commercial developments, or will it advance capital to individuals for productive schemes to be extended throughout the country, in accordance with the above named limitations?’

“‘In the present straitened financial condition of Korea, it is highly desirable that the Government should promote, as far as is consistent with prudence, circulating capital in the money market generally, and yet this is an impossibility for the Government to undertake the responsibility by itself.

“Under these circumstances therefore, and with a view to facilitating such a circulation, which would naturally follow in the wake of enterprise, it would appear that the wisest and most profitable line of policy to be pursued, would be to use some of the loan for public undertakings · under a decided limitation.

“If we pass in review the many and various projects which could thus be carried out, the openings are so numerous, that it would be impossible to define them all, for out of one would spring further undertakings which however good in the abstract would, notwithstanding, be capable of postponement to some future time which would be more favourable to their development.

“The most pressing needs at present appear to be (in agricultural matters) as follows:

“(a), That all arable land, bordering on rivers, and which suffers annually from disastrous floods should be protected by a system of dams and drainage;

“(b) That in fertile and promising districts the land should be rendered more so by an irrigation system, and that promising waste and uncultivated tracts of land should be brought under cultivation; [154 ]

“(c), That experimental farms should be established, in the proportion of at least, one to each province;

“(d), That suitable mountains and hills should be selected for the planting of young trees.

“lf such projects could be carried out the country would soon reap the benefit, and Korean farmers would be able to make a much better livelihood than is now possible under the present primitive methods of agriculture.

“As regards commercial undertakings we should suggest;   .            ·

.            “(a), That in the various ports reclaiming and dredging works should be undertaken. such as those proposed to be carried out at Chemulpo;         ·

“(b), That on the coast of Northern Korea, which has but few ports in comparison with the southern, trading ports should be established;

“(c), That the roads leading to the chief agricultural districts and principal cities should be repaired, and if necessary, new roads should be constructed, thus giving greater facilities for transport of goods and communications.

“The foregoing is but an outline of what might be undertaken by the authorities with a part of the capital just obtained, and should such schemes be wisely and carefully carried out; Korea would make great progress in agriculture and commerce, thus developing the real strength of the country.’

“As the Nippon Kogyo Ginko intends to open a branch office in Korea and will advance money for long periods upon the securities of immovables this will, in conjunction with the Government undertakings, greatly facilitate the circulation. of money.”

The terms of the loan as given by the same paper in a previous issue are

“1, That a loan of yen 10 000,000, of which yen 5,000,000 will be delivered at the end of March to the imperial Korean Central Treasury, and the remainder will be delivered as required. -2, ·That this capital be expended on the improvement and extension of Industry and Agriculture in Korea.-3, That the interest of the Loan is to be 6 1/2 per cent per annum, payable in two half-yearly instalments, viz in May and October. -4, That the whole of the loan shall be repaid within ten years, but in order to ease the strain of refunding such a large sum at one time at the end of five years repayment shall be commenced in instalments. -5, That the security is the Customs Revenue.” [155]

As the Korea Daily News said in commenting on this statement, that the Seoul Press Weekly has omitted to say that the loan was issued at 90 per 100 yen. 6 1/2 % per annum payable half yearly is a fair rate but with the Customs Revenue as security we believe that the bonds might have been sold at par. Whatever may be said about Korea’s internal finances and of which we may speak later, her Customs Department has been so well systematized and conducted that there is no doubt as to the security. Perhaps better terms could not have been obtained but with all the talk about the “Open Door” made by Japan and with all the criticisms that are now being made in regard to Japan’s selfishness of interest, had Japan, though in control, thrown the whole matter open and seen what was the best that Korea could get, nothing but praise would have been awarded her. Korea now gets nine millions, hypothecates her Customs for and pays interest on ten millions, and by many Japan is blamed. Such blame would have been removed had the course suggested been followed. Now as to its uses; we are told that it is a “Loan for New Undertakings” and the Press outlines two classes of uses namely agricultural and commercial. In regard to the former, it is well known to those who have been long in the land that if the Korean farmer is given the assurance that he will be protected in securing the results of his labors the items a. and b. would all be undertaken by the Koreans without intervention of the Government. This people are an enterprising people but as long as they knew that any such improvements would but make them the prey to the official class they could not be expected to undertake them. Give to Korea officials that will see that JUSTICE is meted out and no public funds need be used for these purposes.

The experimental farms are a good thing, but we doubt the advisability of running the country into debt for this and for tree planting. As we said in our last issue a careful husbanding of Korea’s present resources would show a balance over and above necessary expenditure and this balance could be used in part for this. [156]

In regard to the “Commercial undertakings” let ‘the improvement of the existing ports and the opening of new ones be all under the able Customs management and no loan need to be effected. This plan has answered admirably thus far and we see no reason for a change. As to the “roads leading to the chief agricultural districts” and their repair; the Korean system and custom in vogue throughout the land is an admirable one and can be easily enforced. The farmers and citizens of a district are supposed to keep the roads in repair and while those who have travel1ed in Korea may laugh at the suggestion that Korea’s paths and byways should be called roads yet the present laws can be enforced and the farmers will welcome their enforcement for then all unite and all get the benefit. Notably when H. E. Kim Ka Chin was Governor of Whang Hai Do he ordered the enforcement of the existing law and from the Keum Chun river to Haiju you could have driven in a carriage.

Considering these facts we trust that there are other uses, not yet divulged, to which this money is to be put and that if there are not Marquis Ito will use his power. of veto in such a matter as this and at least postpone the final negotiation of such a loan till Korean internal affairs are on a better footing, some of the “leaks” stopped up, and a definite NEED is shown for the money.

Since writing the above we learn that it has been determined to use of this ten millions, Y1,200,000 on water works for Chemulpo, Y800,000 for loans to enable the establishment of Agricultural and Industrial Banks, Y500,000 for the advancement of education, Y1,000,000 for the repairing and construction of roads, Y274,000 for the extension of the Police service, and Y500,000 for agricultural and experimental stations at Suwon.

Even the Seoul Press which is to say the least slow to criticise the works of the Japanese says:

“lf it is true that a large portion of the new loan is to be diverted into the construction of waterworks for Chemulpo and of military roads, we fail to see what benefit can accrue to the Korean people from such waste of money, and we should [157] heartily approve of opposition to such schemes as will only benefit a small municipality or the army department of Japan in a future war with Russia. But we can hard1y believe that Marquis Ito would favour such a one-sided policy.”

In the very next issue of the Seoul Press, however, we see a change of front, and apparently hearty approval is given to those very things condemned in the previous issue. We extremely regret to see this, and we cannot but believe that better judgment of the Press will hold to its criticisms quoted above. Omitting the subsidy of the Bank, the establishing of schools, the other three items for which these funds are to be used are certainly open to serious criticism. The municipality of Chemulpo is certainly able to look for its own water works and could have issued bonds, and then the people of that locality who get the benefit of the water works would have been those who would have paid for them. As has been mentioned above, good roads are needed in Korea, but the Korean people are ready and would provide them without the use of this million or million and a half. We therefore feel that we must deprecate not simply the loan, but the uses to which it is to be put. As we have said before, close up the leaks, and there will be a balance over from Korea’s expenses. During the year referred to in our last issue, when the finances were managed by an Englishman, the expenses of the Department of War were on the old scale and the amount saved from this Department alone, since the Japanese have cut down the Army, would be more than sufficient to cover many of these proposed improvements .



We are glad to give Mr. Moose’s second article on “Decrease in Population,” so that the data can be before students of Korea’s economic conditions.

Mr. Moose makes a very strong point in his last article, but we would simply note that some of those whom he asked may yet have more children, that in our experience of one or two villages we have ascertained that the annual birth rate exceeds the death rate. It [158] may be that these villages being Christian, hygienic rules are more carefully followed. But whatever the decision concerning Mr. Moose’s articles may be, they certainly show the need of very careful instruction and training in order that the appalling death rate among the children mentioned by him may be diminished.



News Calendar.


The Foreign Communities of Seoul and Chemulpo will be pleased to welcome the return of Mr. and Mrs. A. Lay (of H B.M’s Vice-Consulate, Chemulpo) who arrived in Chemulpo on S. S. Ohio 11 on Friday April 6th,. after a year’s furlough in England. Mr. T. Harrington. who has been in charge of the Vice-Consulate during Mr. Lay’s absence, will probably leave for Japan shortly and his departure will be greatly regretted by his numerous friends in the port.

It is stated that Lieutenant-General Inouye, Aide de Camp to the Emperor of Japan, who accompanied the Resident General to Korea, left Seoul for Japan on the 1st inst. On his arrival in Tokyo be will be received in audience by the Japanese Emperor to give a report of matters in Korea.         We hear that the Japanese military authorities intend to establish iron works on a large scale at Yong-San, for military and railway purposes.

Mr. Yun Hio-chiung who has been in durance vile on some charge of sedition has been released and now proposes, with the assistance of the Editor of the Whang Sung newspaper and a Japanese gentleman of considerable note, a Mr. Ogaki, to found a society for self-help. The society is, to be called the Cha Kang-hoi, or society for self-help. Of this society and of this Japanese gentleman the Korea Daily News says “The Japanese promoter is a gentleman named Mr. Ogaki. He is we believe well known in Japan,. where he has a considerable following. The objects of this society are fairly clearly indicated by its title. It is intended to substitute the improvement of the individual Korean for sweeping reforms. Behind all this there lies of course the idea that the present anomalous state of affairs may be done away with and Korea become once more independent, And in this connection the fact that a patriotic Japanese subject is interesting himself in the movement calls for  explanation. We have had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Ogaki and believe him to be a sincere and far sighted man. He contends that by assuming a protectorate over Korea Japan is antagonizing the Korean people without gaining for herself any legitimate advantages. He believes that reforms imposed upon a country by a dictator cannot be permanent or real. He thinks—and we do not believe his ideas are Utopian [159] –that the reforms so necessary to Korea can be effected by the Korean people themselves, and that such reforms would be of far greater value and permanency than those forced upon the country by an alien power. Mr. Ogaki, and the many influential Koreans who are co-operating with him, believe that the interests of the nations of the Far East lie in the encouragement of a spirit of amity between them, and it is foreseen that the policy of coercion now being adopted here will only defeat this object. The society is yet only in its infancy but we are sure that its aims will receive the sympathy of all well-wishers of Korea. Japan’s attempts to dominate the Far East only saddle her with enormous expense and responsibilities, while a spirit of conciliation and friendly guidance will inevitably cement the friendship between kindred Powers and strengthen the friendship which should of course exist between such countries as Japan, Korea and China. In order to disseminate its views, the society intends to issue a newspaper, and we believe that the consent of the authorities concerned has already been obtained for its organization.”

Sir John Jordan had the honor of being received by the King on February 13 upon his return home from Seoul, and upon relinquishing his appointment as His Majesty’s Minister-Resident and Consul-General in Korea. He has had 30 years’ experience in the East. He went out to China in 1876 as a student interpreter, and a dozen years later be was appointed Assistant Chinese Secretary to the British Legation in Peking, becoming Secretary shortly afterwards. He came to Korea in 1896, and during the whole of the recent troubles he had charge of British interests in this country.

Marquis Ito is reported to have decided to retain Mr. Stevens’ services for the Residency General exclusively.

A ceremony in connection with the inauguration of a small section of The Seoul-Wiju Railway at which General Hasegawa and his staff were present was held on April the third.

It is now reported that amnesty has not yet been granted to the refugees now in Japan. The Minister for Law is reported to be opposing the scheme.

We regret to record the injustice exhibited in the following. In connection with the investigation into the attack on Mr. Yi Keun-Taik it does not appear that Mr. Sim Sang-Hoon has been convicted of complicity. He is, however, to be banished for three years. We had hoped that now that Japan controls the courts such actions were impossible. However we are glad to say that we hear that his fate is still in abeyance and that several of the Cabinet Ministers are insisting upon his exoneration and release.

It is reported that the railways which are to connect Gensan with Seoul and Ping-Yang will not be completed this year as the Japanese are suffering for want of capital. Certain Japanese are said to have a scheme on foot for the construction of a railway between Kunsan and Chunchin.

Prince Eui Wha reached South Gate station by special train at 4 [160] o’clock on the afternoon of April the 6th. His arrival was made the occasion for a demonstration greater than anything Seoul has witnessed for many years. The Prince was driven off in Marquis Ito’s carriage to the Palace where he was received in formal audience by the Emperor and the other Princes after which he was taken by Marquis Ito to a house in the Japanese quarter of the city where His Highness will for the time being reside, while his Palace is being put in readiness.

At the request of the Korean Government the Residency General agreed that the Japanese District Post Offices in various districts in the interior should have control of the payment and the receiving of money to and from the national treasury; the Japanese Diet passed a Bill granting Yen 25,000 to meet the necessary expenses. The Korean and Japanese authorities are now making arrangements for putting the plan into effect, which will probably be next month.

It is announced that Prince Eui-Wha was received in audience by the Emperor on the 8th inst, and on that occasion His Majesty bestowed upon the Prince two decorations viz that of the Grand Cordon o{ the Golden Measure, and that of the Grander Order of Merit. Prince Eui-Wha having spent most of his early life abroad had not as yet received any decoration from the Emperor.

The Seoul Press of April 14th says “Tokio Telegram, April 9th, 11 30 p. m. “According to a Peking telegram the Manchurian Steamship Company has been organized with a capital of Yen 500.000 as a joint undertaking of China and Japan; the object of this company is to navigate the rivers Yon-Ha, Tai-Tong. and Song-Wha in Manchuria. and in Korea the Yalu. The Company will · commence operations in May.”             .

Mr. Megata has left Korea for a short visit to the Japanese Capital.

Mr. Ko Hei-Kiung, who is exceedingly popular with all foreign residents in Seoul, is to be congratulated on his recent appointment as Vice- President of the Ceremonial Bureau.

We are informed that the number of Japanese holding official positions in Korea now amounts to 1700. They are divided roughly into three classes, as follows:

                           Employees of the Residency General and Residencies        500

                           Gendarmes                                                                           600

                           Police                                                                                   900

There can be little doubt that Korea will ultimately be compelled to pay for the support of these unwelcome and uninvited lodgers.

A very slight shock of earthquake was felt in Seoul at about 1.30 p. m. yesterday.

Mr. A. F. Laws of the English Church Mission to Korea, who has for the last nine years been doing moat excellent medical work in connection with the Mission on Kanghoa Island, left Seoul on the morning of April 7th for Chemulpo en route for England, on furlough. He will be much missed and all who know him will wish him bon voyage and a speedy return.

On the 21st inst Marquis Ito left Korea for Japan to witness the Military Review. How prolonged the stay will be is not known. During Marquis Ito’s absence the work of the Residency-General. will of course be under the care of H.E. Mr. Tsuribara the Director General.

Mr. Song Pyung-Hee announces that he will build a large temple in Seoul to cost about 800,000 Yen to be collected from the members of the Il-Chin-Hoi all over the land.

We are glad to note that Dr. Hahn is now at the American Mines, but will return to Pyeng Yang early in May and will arrive at Seoul on May 28th.


No. 5 (May)

Gleanings by the Wayside  161

Translation of the Scriptures into Korean  165

A Foolish Tale   180

The Tiger and The Babies  182

Correspondence   188

Editorial Comment   190

News Calendar   195





May, 1906.



Gleanings by the Wayside.


Upon a former trip to some new groups leading through the Hay-in-sa mountains of Hapchun county in the northwest of South Kyung Sang province much was heard of a famous Buddhist temple founded many hundreds of years ago and reputed to have in residence some thousands of priests; so recently. when again in that region I determined to spend a night there, if possible, and have a look at so famous an old place. Fortunately the development of the native church in that region made a visit not only possible, but quite in the line of my travels.

Though the route at this time pursued was more devious, a comparatively direct and easy road is from Tai-ku westwardly 80 li to Koryung Upnai, and from there some 25 li over a narrow but not difficult mountain pass will bring one in front of Hapchun Upnai, or what at least has been such a number of times, though just now the officials have their residence at what is commonly known as the old magistracy. Leaving here the road broad and smooth follows in general the course of the mountain stream, which flows down from the dividing heights of Hay-in-sa; a gay, carefree child, singing as it goes its cheery way to sport with its reunited sister in the broad lap of mother Ocean. Some 30 li further on it passes under a high decorated beam laid upon pillars, not like that which so often delights the eye at the entrance to temples in Japan, but similar to those [162] commonly found in the market place of country towns; and in front of embellished obolisques, or stone pagodas, called by the Korean “taps.” These “taps'' mark the site of temples, and are often seen standing solitary in the midst of productive fields bearing sad and silent testimony to the decadence of that form of religion, or at least the disappearance of its fane from that spot. At length the road leads to the temple itself deep in the recesses of the mountains whose streams in the constant sh! sh! of falling water seem to bid all be silent and adore the grandeur of creation.

It was beside one of these streams that I saw for the first time the manufacturing of Korean paper. There are usually two common lines of appeal to the beholder of a process of manufacture: the quantative or modern, an illustration of which is a new cotton mill in New England, one of whose buildings measures 1,900 feet long by 150 feet broad with 8 stories; the other is primitiveness.

Paper making as observed at this place can hardly be said to have impressed me in the former way, for here there were neither buildings, machinery, nor finished stock in hand. As we approached we saw a number of small fields in barley in the midst of which were numerous roots of the paper mulberry from which all the saplings had been cut to make the paper which was then in process of manufacture. These are put in a kiln not unlike that used for the burning of lime, or for preparing the hemp stalk before extracting the fiber. They are treated there till the bark can be easily removed, which is then allowed to soak a long time in the running stream, till the inner layer or fiber can be detached. This is then beaten into a shreddy pulp and washed, afterwards to be boiled or steamed for a day in an iron pot, much like that in which they boil their rice. It is taken from there and again thoroughly washed and worked up into a more completely disintegrated state, when it is finally dissolved in a vat of water in which the roots of certain mountain bushes have long soaked, and also the ashes of bean bushes and pods have been dissolved. This composition being worked into proper solution it is ready to [163] be made into paper. From a cross beam a frame is suspended upon which a piece of matting the size of 2 sheets of paper is laid. This matting is made by fastening a layer of fine weed stalks together, retaining the film of paper, but permitting the excess of water to drain through. This is dipped into the vat upon the suspended frame 7 times, varying no doubt with the thinness of the paper required. The motion is once to right, and once to left then 5 times forward, thus uniting the fiber and giving strength to the paper. The mat is then placed on a flat stone the film side down and rolled with a wooden roller, expressing the water and separating the sheet from the mat. Each sheet is kept separate from the other by inserting a slender reed along the edge. After some hundred of sheets have thus been deposited they are taken and hung separately in an oven, where when the drying process bas been completed the paper is ready for the market; and though for us only a matter of idle thought it has its fluctuations which the manufacturer is no more slow to take advantage of.

From there we continued on the road which ran sometimes beneath sheer precipices upon the bare sur face of which large Chinese characters had been engraved, the engraver having evidently been let down from above as the remains of thick ropes seemed to indicate, showing the Koreans too to be sharers in that almost universal desire for fame that writes its name in public places and in all languages; and sometimes in the grateful shade and fragrant atmosphere of pine leading up a narrow valley broadening as we ascended at last opening upon a broad basin near the top of the mountains, where the ordinary pine gave place to spruce, chestnut, birch and other deciduous trees besides many parasitic vines and bushes. The season being early only the violet, azalias, and one or two other small flowers were in bloom, though they are reputed to grow in great variety and profusion. Animal life of all kinds seemed to be scarce, tho in proximity to a community of people one of whose great characteristics is regard for animal life. Even the spring song of a bird was rarely heard. Here, [164] sequestered from the world, but 1acking that spirit of gaiety so characteristic of the pictures of the monks of the Middle Ages, lives a community of celibate priests of Buddha, lonely in their celibacy as a number confessed, and not knowing why celibacy should be required in Korea when not in Japan, but accepting it as they do other parts of the system without understanding and without protest. The fame had far outstripped the fact in this case as in many another, and to my surprise hardly 200 persons belonged to the community, and the buildings were neither many nor worthy of special mention.

Two buildings standing side by side and similar in size and appearance, sheltered thousands of wood plates, all arranged in thorough order, from which their book had been printed for ages, truly a strange sight aside from the statement of our guide—the leader of the community—that no bird had ever entered these sacred precincts, and whoever in the course of his engraving made a mistake was suddenly and mysteriously visited by death, himself having been once witness to such retribution upon the careless. In the temple itself, more interesting than the idols—though these were of goodly size and number, were a series of paintings illustrating scenes in the life of Buddha, as we would say “from the cradle to the grave,” save there was neither cradle nor grave as I recall. Though wrought upon principles not obtaining in modern art they are nevertheless finely conceived, well executed, and worth careful study. Another building shelters the sacred image of an old man with a punctured breast like a wound from a modern army rifle, reputed to have been re-born in the adjoining county of . Kŭchang, a stray visitor from a country all whose inhabitants he reported to have this defect—or perhaps more correctly representing their view, virtue. Whether less self-sacrificing or of less migratory spirit, no representative of the land of one-eyed citizens had come to bless this community, though in common with the ordinary Korean, they have firm belief in the existence of such a nation. Yet even there the light of the new day is breaking [165] in, and while it is in painful contrast with the darkness that has served for their light, the young men at least seem not loathe to welcome and profit by its presence. But whatever else they are ignorant of they seemed to have learned to be humble and hospitable. We were kindly received, and the same pleasant room then vacated especially for us, was said to be at our disposal anytime we were minded to accept their meagre hospitality.

Leaving there in the dew of early morning and ascending by an embowered path to the height dividing the two counties we early came upon a party of gold diggers, who if their losses belied them not, had scarcely realized the fortune that lures so many from mildly profitable if not romantic occupations, to hardship, danger, and death. They were then just beginning to dig a channel and prepare a sluice for the washing of the dirt, an operation covering several days. Whether from fear of having it known that they possessed gold, or whether as they declared they had eaten all their savings during their enforced idleness on account of the cold of winter, or not, We were unable by dint of persuasion to buy even enough to adorn a cravat. The next day, which was the Sabbath, was spent with the last group of Christians, from whence we returned home tired from the frequent crossing of high mountain passes, but with pleasant memories of all that we had seen.





Translation of the Scriptures into Korean.


1,237 Bibles and Old Testaments in Chinese Script,

l 6,967 New Testaments, (15,000 in Native Script) and 138,486 Portions; or a total output of 156,690 Scriptures from the Bible House in Seoul in 1905. And this, too, in a land where a score of years ago there was not a single convert, and a dozen years ago barely two hundred evangelical church members ! [166]

The Korea-American Treaty was signed in 1882. The first Protestant missionary, Dr. H. N. Allen, entered the country in 1884, followed by Revs. H. G. Underwood and H. G. Appenzeller, and Drs. W. B. Scranton and J. W. Heron in 1885. These five missionaries appointed two of their number, Messrs. Underwood and Appenzeller, to translate the Scriptures; Mark's Gospel was prepared in 1886, and published by the National Bible Society of Scotland at Yokohama in 1887. Acting upon the sage advice of Dr. Hepburn, the veteran translator of the Bible in Japan, Bible work in Korea was put upon a definite, authoritative basis by the organization of The Permanent Bible Committee and the adoption of a Constitution and Bye-laws April 11, 1887. So early and so important a place was assigned to Bible Translation in the programme of missions in Korea. And God has honored his Word. Korea ranks next to Uganda as a "marvel of modern missions." The first convert was baptized in Seoul, July, 1886; twenty more were added in 1887. During the last ten years the work has grown by leaps and bounds, so that in 1905 statistics showed, in round numbers, 600 meeting places with a total average attendance of 36,000, and a total following of over 50,000. Of these, 14,000 were full members, 16,000 catechumens or probationers, and the rest favorably disposed and more or less regular attendants.

These 600 congregations contributed a total of over $20,000, U. S. gold. Furthermore, not to speak of other places, in Seoul, Pyeng Yang and Sunchun, classes for Bible Study were held for ten days or two weeks in January and February 1906 with daily attendance of 400, 800 and 1,050 respectively. During two weeks of special revival services in Pyeng Yang City 1,500 professed faith and promised to keep the Sabbath.

To supply the great and growing demand for Scriptures the Bible Committee at its regular annual meeting February 1906, voted to print 25,000 large type and 25,000 small type New Testaments, and 125,000 Gospels and Acts. Adding 50,000 G. & A. received from the Press in February we have a grand total of 225,000 [167] scriptures in the vernacular in the first half of 1906. Genesis, Psalms, Proverbs and perhaps other Old Testament portions will be published in the latter part of the year.

The following historical sketch aims to give, as briefly as may be consistent with clearness and accuracy, the various steps that have led up to the above results. It is highly fitting that some such sketch should appear at this time, for the Spring of 1906 marks an epoch in the history of Bible Translation in Korea. It marks the completion of a round dozen years of Board's work. The Board of Official Translators was organized in the Fall of 1893, but began joint work at irregular intervals upon the New Testament April 4, 1894. It furnishes the third milestone in the progress of New Testament publication. The first edition of the whole New Testament published by the Bible committee appeared in 1900; the second, revised, in 1904; and the third, emended, in 1906. With the appearance of this “Authorized Version” of the New Testament, the Board is now set free to devote its undivided attention to the Old Testament, upon which considerable individual work has already been done in addition to the Board's version of  Genesis and Psalms mentioned above.

Before entering upon a detailed account of Translation Work in Korea, a few words about the country and language are in order. Since the Chino-Japanese and Russo-Japanese wars, both of which were fought over Korea, everyone knows something about the location, climate and characteristics of this once “Hermit Nation.” Our present purpose is merely to indicate the great antiquity of the country and record the changes, historical and political, that have taken place.        

Korea’s reply to America's proposal to enter into treaty relations in 1871 was the bombardment of Admiral Rogers' fleet and the arrogant declaration: "Korea is satisfied with her civilization of four thousand years, and wants no other." The first king, Tangun, 2200 B. C., antedates Abraham 400 years. He is said to have lived 1048 years, thus outclassing Methuselah ! History [168] proper begins with Kija, who came over from China 1122 B. C. with five thousand followers, and introduced Chinese customs and civilization. His well and grave and traces of his ancient capital are still shown at Pyeng Yang. His dynasty lasted about 1000 years, and was succeeded by the period of the Sam Han or Three Rival Kingdoms; which in the course of another one thousand years were fused into one kingdom called Koryu (Korea ). Koryu lasted from 936 to 1392 A. D., at which latter date the founder of the reigning dynasty ascended the throne and changed the name of the country back to Cho-sun, the ancient name in vogue under Tangun and Kija. So the name by which Westerners know the country, Korea, went out of fashion with the natives one hundred years before Columbus discovered America! Korea means the ''Land of high mountains and sparkling streams;" Cho-sun, the “Land of Morning Freshness," or as the native puts it, “Fair as the morning"—both beautiful names for a beautiful country!

Partly out of superstitous regard for an old prophecy that the dynasty would only last 500 years, and partly as a "declaration of independence" after the Japan-China war, the reigning monarch exchanged his robes of royal red for imperial yellow, and selected a new name for his country, Tai Han, or “Great Han.” Ten years of nominal independence characterized by court intrigues, official corruption, and alternate coquetting with Russia and Japan, were followed by the Russo-Japanese war; and in December, 1905, "Great Han" became a Protectorate of Japan!

The Korean language is polysyllabic and highly inflected; being equipped with nine cases and about a thousand verb endings. As spoken it has neither the exaggerated tones of Chinese, nor the staccato, metallic click of Japanese. Although mutually unintelligible in speech, a Japanese, a Chinaman, and a Korean can carry on a perfectly intelligible conversation by writing, the use of the Chinese characters being common to the three countries.

There are three kinds of script in daily use; Han-mun, [169] or pure Chinese; Kuk-mun, or native characters, and Kuk-Han-mun or Mixed Script, a combination of the other too. The first has been used by court, gentry and scholars for ages; but because of the endless number of characters that must be committed to memory, the involved construction and inverted order of the sentence, and the lack of noun and verb endings, the pure Chinese script is exceedingly difficult and lacking in precision. Yet thousands of Chinese Bibles and tracts are imported every year, and the large majority of church leaders and native helpers still cling to their Chinese New Testaments in preference to the vernacular.

The Kuk-mun, or native alphabet, invented about 1450 A.D. is said to be one of the most perfect alphabets in existence. Its eleven vowels and fourteen consonants are always written syllabically, in groups of two, three or four letters. As compared with the Chinese, the chief merits of the native script are simplicity, ease of acquisition, great variety and precision of inflections, and natural order of words in the sentence. Its defects are, firstly, uncertainty as to the meaning of Sino-Korean words without the Chinese character; e.g. Shin may mean God, devil, shoe, faith, new, etc.—46 different Chinese characters represented by one syllable! In the case of new terms or unfamiliar expressions, it is always necessary to give the Chinese etymology. Secondly, the native custom of printing with large type in vertical columns and spacing syllables instead of words makes it difficult for the eye to catch a word at a glance—especially of eight or ten syllables in length—and gives a monotonous, unattractive appearance to the page. The native scholar complains of great difficulty in remembering what he reads in Kuk-mun. It does not catch the eye nor stick in the memory like Chinese characters. Hence the delight with which the better educated among the Christians hail the appearance of the Mixed Script edition of the Board's New Testament version, 20,000 copies of which have just been issued from the Fukuin Press, Yokohama. This is simply the Board's version with all the word-stems, except proper nouns, put in the [170 ] Chinese character, and all inflections, etc., in the native script, thus remedying the two chief defects of the other systems of writing; viz. indefiniteness of words in native script, and lack of endings in the Chinese.              .

With Mixed Script editions of the Scriptures for readers of Chinese, and word-spaced varied type, attractively bound editions in the vernacular for the great mass of the people, the .Bible Societies are now well equipped for their great work of supplying all classes with the Word of God. In order to give a clear view of the various stages through which the work of Bible Translation has passed the following outline has been followed :-


1. Ross in Manchuria, 1875-1889.

             2. Rijutei in Japan, 1883-1885.


1. Preparation, 1887-1893. (Individual and Committee work.)

2. Board Work

1. Over-organization, 1893-1896.

2. Simplification, 1897-1902.

3. Re-organization, 1902-1906.



1. The Ross Version. In 1875 the Revs. John Ross and John Macintyre of the U. P. Church of Scotland mission in Manchuria came into contact with Koreans on the border and began to study their language. Saw Sang Yun, the oldest convert in Korea, was baptized by Mr. Ross in Mukden and has been so prominently connected with Presbyterian Mission work in Seoul as to have won the unofficial title "Saw the evangelist."

Finding that an educated Korean could render the Chinese version of the Scriptures into vernacular Korean, Mr. Ross and his colleague, Rev. John Mcintyre, undertook the translation of the New Testament with this first draft as a basis. In 1879 the National Bible Society of Scotland agreed to refund past expenses and to provide type for a tentative edition of the Gospels of St. Luke and St. John “in order to see whether the translation was satisfactory." Three thousand of each of these [171] two gospels were published early in 1882. These books were in northwestern Korean; but with the help of a native recently arrived from Seoul an attempt was made to remove provincialisms, and to print 1000 copies of St. John "in the dialect of the capital—with but moderate success." At this point it was arranged that the B. F. B. S. should take over the work. Acts and revised St. Luke were printed in 1883, Matthew, Mark and revised John followed in 1884, and the whole New Testament seems to have been completed in 1889.

2. Rijutei's Versions. During 1882, a Korean named Ye Suchon (Rijutei in Japanese) while on a visit to Japan carne into contact with Christianity, and professed conversion. In 1883, at the instance of Rev. H. Loomis, Agent of the American Bible Society, Japan, he began to translate Mark from the Chinese. This gospel was published at Yokohama in 1885. Another edition of the Gospels and Acts in Chino-Korean (simply the Chinese with Korean ending indicated by certain arbitrary Chinese characters along side) was prepared by this man Rijutei and published by the B. F. B. S. in Yokohama in 1884.

By a comparison of dates it will appear that the Ross and Rijutei versions had a special part to play in the providence of God in the inauguration of mission work in Korea. The Ross editions of the various Gospels and Acts were sent across the border into north-western Korea and doubtless helped to prepare the soil for what has developed into the most fruitful work of grace in the whole field. This first Seed-sowing by colporteurs preceded the first arrival of missionaries by several years. Furthermore, when Messrs. Underwood and Appenzeller arrived in Japan en route to open mission work in Korea, they found Rijutei’s version of Mark, just published, ready to hand. In fact, they stepped ashore at Chemulpo with copies of this gospel in their hands.

Unfortunately however, these "Extra Korean versions" proved to be extraordinary Korean, in the literal sense of the word. That is, instead of approaching as near as possible to the colloquial so that all might understand, [172] these versions retained the stilted literary style of the Chinese, many passages and expressions being simply Chinese dressed in native script. It is due Mr. Ross to say that he made an effort to "remove all the Chinese expressions which had disfigured the first edition" but he was handicapped by having to work from the Chinese instead of the Korean side. When the attempt to correct the Ross version was made from the Korean side by the appointment of a committee of Seoul missionaries in 1889, they were handicapped and two years time practically thrown away by being definitely limited to corrections of spelling. The trouble was not with the spelling, but with the words themselves and the whole style of the book. Hence, after thus correcting Luke and Romans and republishing them in 1896, the task was abandoned and the Ross version laid on the shelf. But these extra Korean versions had filled an otherwise totally vacant place in the inauguration of mission work, and the names of Ross, McIntyre and Rijutei will be held in grateful remembrance by all Korean missionaries.



1. The Preliminary Stage of many committees and individual preparation; 1887-1893. First, as noted in the beginning of this article, a committee of two missionaries prepared and published a translation of Mark in the winter of '86-'87 before they had been on the field two years! This edition was republished at Seoul by the Bible Committee in 1893. Early in 1887, three Committees were organized: the Permanent Bible Committee, the Translating Committee, and the General Revising Committee, the personnel of each being the same four missionaries. In 1889, at the request of the B. F. B. R. a committee of two was appointed to correct the Ross Version, as noted above, Again, in June, 1890, the Permanent Bible Committee “Appointed a committee of two to prepare within two years from date a tentative edition of the whole New Testament.” Easier said than done! The Revs, H. G. Underwood and W. B. Scranton, M. D., entered upon their appointed task with great [173] enthusiasm; but before they could do more than lay plans and for