Before we go down too deeply down the Three Kingdoms, here’s a quick run down on even more ancient history as it will be referenced in several of dramas such as Jumong and Princess Ja Myung Go. The big budget fantasy drama, The Legend aka: Tae Wang Sa Shin Gi (태왕사신기) is based in part of the mythological stories that have been passed down for thousands of years of Korea’s first ancient kingdom known as: GoJoseon 고조선.
GoJoseon was founded in 2333 BC by Dangun Wanggum 단군왕검, but more commonly known simply as “Dungun” 단군, in what is present day North Korea and Manchuria. According to the founding myth, Dangun’s father, Hwanwoong was a god who wanted to live among humans. His mother was a bear, who wanted to become human. Attracted by this shared interest, they mated and had Dangun.
GoJoseon versus Joseon
GoJoseon is not to be confused with the Joseon (Chosun) 조선 Dynasty that lasted from 1388 -1897 (Tree With Deep Roots 뿌리깊은 나무, Princess’s Man 공주의 남자, Jang Ok Jung, Live in Love 장옥정, 사랑에 살다) .
The prefix “Go” (고, 古) in GoJoseon means “ancient” – in other words, “Ancient Joseon.” GoJoseon’s capital was located in Liandong Province inpresent day southern Manchuria. It eventually moved to Pyong’Yang in around 400 BC.
GoJoseon was made up of three different confederacies or states. Here’s a quick overview of each of these confederacies:
- Jinjoseon (진조선; 眞朝鮮): 2333 BC – 238 BC
- Mahjoseon (마조선; 馬朝鮮): 2333 BC – ?
- Beonjoseon (번조선; 番朝鮮): 2333 BC – 108 BC
Gojoseon lasted until 108 BC when it fell to the Han Empire (China).
List of Korean Dramas that tie into GoJoseon: