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National Treasure

Geungnakjeon Hall of Bongjeongsa Temple, Andong

안동 봉정사 극락전 ( 安東 鳳停寺 極樂殿 )

Heritage Search Detail
Classification National Treasure
Name of Cultural Properties Geungnakjeon Hall of Bongjeongsa Temple, Andong
Quantity 1 Building
Designated Date 1962.12.20
Age Late Goryeo
Address Bongjeongsa Temple, 222, Bongjeongsa-gil, Seohu-myeon, Andong, Gyeongsangbuk-do

According to a sangnyangmun (message concerning a ridge beam raising ceremony) of Geungnakjeon Hall, Bongjeongsa Temple appears to have been built by Great Monk Neungin in the late 7th century while legend has it that the temple was built in 672. Geungnakjeon Hall, originally called Daejangjeon Hall, was the main hall of Bongjeongsa Temple. The sangnyangmun discovered during its reconstruction in 1972 states that the roof of this hall was repaired in 1363 (the 12th year of King Gongmin's reign in Goryeo Dynasty). Considering the roofs of traditional Korean structures were usually repaired some 100-150 years after their construction, this hall dates back to the early 1200s and thus, is presumed to be the oldest wooden building remaining in Korea.
The hall measures three kan (a unit of measurement referring to the distance between two columns) at the front and four kan at the sides, and has a gabled roof supported by column brackets. It has a door in the front middle compartment and windows on both sides. The interior of the hall, in which the Buddhist statue is placed, is decorated with an ornamental canopy, while the Buddhist altar is carved with a scroll design. Though built during the Goryeo Period, the hall displays the influence of the architectural style of the early Unified Silla Period.