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Cotton Picking Koreans!

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Joined: February 8th, 2010 8:55 am

Cotton Picking Koreans!

Postby trutherous » August 4th, 2010 8:40 am

:D Hi -- haha -- I hope the title caught your attention :D

I would like to share about "cotton" and Korea, and another hero of Korean history, 문익점 (Ik-jeom Moon 1329 ~ 1398)


Did you know that Korea did not always have cotton?

Until the late 1300s, at the latter part of the Koryo dynasty, the average Korean typically wore clothes made of loosely woven hemp fabric -not very warm in winter, and one can easily imagine how itchy and uncomfortable these clothes must have been. At that time China grew cotton in abundance but would not allow a single seed to be exported. Thorough searches of foreign nationals leaving the country were also conducted in order to protect China's cotton monopoly.

However, Ik-jeom Moon was determined to bring warm affordable clothing to the people, so he smuggled several cotton seeds out of China by hiding them in the caps of his calligraphy brushes. Some versions of the story say that only three of the seeds sprouted and only a single cotton plant survived to begin the entire cotton industry in Korea, whether or not those stories are exaggerations we do not know, but we do know that history records that 문익점 first brought cotton to Korea.

And once the cotton industry was established in Korea, cotton clothes became so common that for a time the Korean people were even known as "The white-clad people" or "The people wearing white" (백의민족).

I hope that was a fun slice of Korean history for you.

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Joined: November 5th, 2015 10:31 pm

Re: Cotton Picking Koreans!

Postby thyshm77_229725 » November 5th, 2015 10:38 pm

thank for information
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