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What is documentary cultural heritage?

What is documentary cultural heritage?

  • Documentary cultural heritage is categorized as movable cultural properties under the Cultural Heritage Protection Act. In a broad sense, they refer to all the records passed on through letters or symbols, and in a narrow sense, recorded materials of academic or artistic value in each field of study. 
  • Various types of documentary cultural properties have been passed on in Korea since the period of the Three Kingdoms. They are divided into three categories: classical books, ancient documents and calligraphic works. 
  • Classical books are divided into two types: handwritten manuscripts collected in one book and books printed with woodcut or metal type. Generally, handwritten manuscripts include codices, transcribed copies, Buddhist scriptures and diaries. Printed books are divided into woodcut editions and metal-type ones. 
  • Ancient documents refer to records containing: a piece of writing for a specific purpose, a seal and signature, and have cultural value as primary historical materials. Official, private and diplomatic documents are included in this category.
  • Calligraphic works refer to artistic pieces in which the author expressed his/her ideas and views. They include calligraphy and paintings, poetry and prose, and correspondence.

Royal Certificate of Meritorious Subject (Joseon, 1395) / Eulmmyo Wonhaeng Jeongni Uigwe (King Jeongjo’s Visit to the Tomb of Crown Prince Sado) (Joseon, 1795)