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National Folklore Cultural Heritage

Stone Guardian Posts of Silsangsa Temple, Namwon

남원 실상사 석장승 ( 南原 實相寺 石장승 )

Heritage Search Detail
Classification National Folklore Cultural Heritage
Name of Cultural Properties Stone Guardian Posts of Silsangsa Temple, Namwon
Quantity 3 posts
Designated Date 1969.12.17
Age The first year of the reign of King Yeongjo of Joseon (1725)
Address 33-1, Ipseok-ri, Sannae-myeon, Namwon, Jeollabuk-do

Stone Guardian Posts were a form of folk religion and were placed at the entrance of villages or temples to mark boundaries or to ward off evil spirits, serving as a guardian god. Three stone guardian posts standing at the entrance of Silsangsa Temple seem to have been placed there to mark boundaries or to prevent evil spirits from entering the temple.
A stone guardian post on the village side before crossing Haetalgyo Bridge over the Mansucheon Stream has the name Ongho Geumsa Chukgwi Janggun (General Ongho Geumsa Chukgwi) inscribed on its body. Immediately crossing the bridge, there are two stone guardian posts on each side of the stream, facing each other. The one on the right, located on the bank of a rice paddy, is Sangwonju Janggun (General Sangwonju); the other one on the right, located under a huge tree, is Dae Janggun (Great General).
The three posts look almost identical, wearing a hat with big round eyes and stubby nose. The two protruding upper canine teeth make them look scary, but a smile reveals their gentle nature. They have long goatees, but the Sangwonju Janggun and Dae Janggun posts have their goatee in the opposite direction to each other; this seems to imply that the two were intended to be a symmetrical pair. On their bodies, the names Sangwonju Janggun (General Sangwon) and Dae Janggun (Great General) are inscribed. The inscription on the foundation stone of the Daejanggun post and the one on the back side of the Sangwonju Janggun post tell us that they were made in the first year of King Yeongjo’s reign (1725) and the 7th year of King Yeongjo’s reign (1731), respectively.