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Folding Screen of Sinbeop cheonmundo (Celestial Charts) at Beopjusa Temple, Boeun

보은 법주사 신법 천문도 병풍 ( 報恩 法住寺 新法 天文圖 屛風 )

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Classification Treasure
Name of Cultural Properties Folding Screen of Sinbeop cheonmundo (Celestial Charts) at Beopjusa Temple, Boeun
Quantity 8
Designated Date 1985.08.09
Age Joseon
Address Beopjusa Temple 405, Beopjusa-ro, Songnisan-myeon, Boeun-gun, Chungcheongbuk-do

These charts of the stars to the north and south of the ecliptic were made by Gwansanggam (Bureau of Astronomy) in 1742, the 18th year of the reign of King Yeongjo (1724-76) of the Joseon Dynasty. They were based on charts made by Kim Tae-seo and An Guk-bin. These scholars had learned astronomy from Koegler, a Western astronomer who had earlier made charts of 3,083 stars and some 300 constellations while visiting China in 1723, the third year of King Gyeongjong’s reign. This planisphere is composed of eight discs. On the first disc there is a depiction of then-known astronomic information with 510 letters, and pictures in size order of five planets, Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, Venus and Mercury. On the second, third and fourth discs, there are threefold 165 cm diameter circles. One of the discs is a chart of the stars around the ecliptic north pole and the other is a chart of those around the ecliptic south pole. They are two of the best and most extensive star charts made under the influence of western astronomy. The names of the government officials who participated in making this planisphere are recorded on the eighth disc. It is not certain why or when this planisphere was placed in Beopjusa Temple, but it has been deemed a valuable heritage since it is known to be the largest and most excellent manuscript of Koegler's extant.