Yeongjo of Joseon was the 21st king of the Korean Joseon Dynasty. He was the second son of King Sukjong. His mother was Consort Suk of the Choi clan. Before ascending to power, his name was Prince Yeoning. In 1720, a few months after the accession of his older brother, King Gyeongjong as the 20th King, Yeoning became the Royal Prince Successor Brother. This induced a large controversy between political factions. Nevertheless, four years later, at the death of Gyeongjong, Yeongjo ascended the throne.
Yeongjo's reign lasted 52 years and was marked by his persistent efforts to reform the taxation system of Joseon, rule by Confucian ethics, minimize and reconcile the factional fighting under his "Magnificent Harmony" Policy. His reign was also marked by the highly controversial execution of his son, Prince Sado, in 1762. In spite of the controversies, Yeongjo's reign has earned a positive reputation in Korean history due to his sincere efforts to rule by Confucian virtue.