Gold Seal of King Taejo

9th year of King Sukjong

National Palace Museum of Korea

National Palace Museum of Korea

This is a royal seal made upon the bestowal of an additional posthumous title, “the Righteous and Luminous Benevolence”to King Taejo, the founder of Joseon dynasty in 1683, in the 9th year of King Sukjong’s reign. The engraved surface of the seal reads “康獻 至仁啓運 聖文神武 正義光德 大王之寶”meaning “The Sage with Valor, Benevolent Founder, Master in Literary and Martial Arts, Righteous and Luminous Benevolence, Seal of the Great King”. Royal seals of Joseon royal household were the personal seals of the king’s immediate family members, including the queen, crown prince, and consort of the crown prince, as well as the king himself. The seals were offered during state rites such as royal entitlement and bestowal of honorific titles, including posthumous or honorary titles. They represented the power and legitimacy of the royal household. Unlike state seals for diplomatic and administrative documents, Royal seals were made for ceremonial use, not for practical use. The seals were kept in the royal palace and permanently enshrined with its owner in the spirit chamber of the Royal Ancestral Shrine upon the owner’s death.

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  • Title: Gold Seal of King Taejo
  • Date Created: 9th year of King Sukjong
  • Rights: National palace museum of Korea
  • Medium: Jongmyo