Myth and culture


These are the illuminated displays that greeted visitors to the Myth and Culture expo in Jungman’s ICC (International Convention Centre) today. The placid looking characters in the top photo look as if they represent the dol harubang that are so common on the island, the stone figures that act as guardians, often placed on either side of a gateway or entrance.

The expo booklet describes the idea that Jeju is a kingdom of 18,000 gods, and that Jeju’s myths contain the local living culture, values and language. I guess the images below show the local creation myths. There’s a story of three brothers appearing out of the ground (the site is still there to see in Jeju city), each firing an arrow and going to live where the arrow landed, and of three princesses (isn’t it lucky there were three?) arriving in a boat and marrying the brothers.

I might have fitted the wrong story to these displays; there must be other stories with arrows and boats amongst that many gods and I don’t know where the one-eyed creature with earrings comes in.



One thought on “Myth and culture

  1. I think he is Oenunbaegi, a Cyclopean character who tears the goddess of the wind into pieces. I don’t know how it fits together but I think she sets a shop afloat so that is an alternative explanation for the ship.

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