Record of Special Bequeathal by Eophwa, Concubine of Choe Eungsam


Academy of Korean Studies

Academy of Korean Studies
Seongnam-si, South Korea

This record documents the special bequeathal of a slave and five majigi of rice paddy by Eophwa, who was Choe Eungsam’s concubine, to Lady Choe, who was the wife of Son Jongha, nephew of Choe Eungsam. It occurred sometime between 1602 and 1611. After consulting with her husband, Eophwa bequeathed the property originally purchased by Choe Eungsam to Lady Choe, wife of her husband’s nephew, who was raised by the childless Eophwa when he was young. The precise date of documentation for this document is almost impossible to identify, as there is no mention of any date later than “thirty … [th] year of Wanli era.” Due to her low social status, Eophwa signed this document by marking it with the middle finger of her right hand, rather than using a seal. At the time, it was customary for women to use the middle finger of the right hand to sign, while men did the same with their left hand. In contrast, women of noble birth were not recorded by name in such documents, and instead were recorded as the wife of their husband or simply “Lady...,” whereas Eophwa did have her name on the document due to her low social class.

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  • Title: Record of Special Bequeathal by Eophwa, Concubine of Choe Eungsam
  • Date Created: 1602/1611
  • Physical Dimensions: Single sheet
  • Original Language: Chinese