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Treasure 252

Stele for State Preceptor Wonjin at Bogyeongsa Temple, Pohang
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Classification Treasure 252
Name of Cultural Properties Stele for State Preceptor Wonjin at Bogyeongsa Temple, Pohang
Quantity 1 stele
Designated Date 1963.01.21
Age Goryeo Period
Address Gyeongsangbuk-do Pohang-si
This memorial stone dedicated to a great Buddhist monk named Wonjin (secular name: Shin Seung-hyeong) of the Goryeo Dynasty stands in the precinct of the Bogyeongsa Temple.

Born in 1171 (the first year of King Myeongjong), Wonjin became a monk at the age of 13 and made the head monk of the temple by the king's command.

When he died at the age of 51, King Gojong of Goryeo gave him the posthumous title of Wonjin as well as the rank of State Preceptor, one of the highest honors a monk could achieve.

In lieu of a capstone, the top corners of the memorial stone have been rounded off, the style that became popular in the Goryeo Dynasty.

The base is carved into the shape of a tortoise whose head looks like a dragon with the dragon ball in its mouth.

The Chinese character of "王" meaning ‘king’ is inscribed in each of the shell of the tortoise.

The support for the memorial stone sets on the back of the tortoise, which is decorated with lotus petals.

The sides of the memorial stone are decorated with an arabesque design and it is another characteristic of stonework during the Goryeo Dynasty.

Erected to the memory of Wonjin, the epigraph inscribed on this memorial stone was composed by a civil minister and scholar named Yi Gong-ro and written by the famous calligrapher Kim Hyo-in.

The calligraphy, done in Quyang Xun style, shows free and powerful strokes.

According to the epigraph, the memorial stone was made in 1224 (11th year of King Gojong), 3 years after Wonjin died.