Korean era name

Korean era names were used during the period of Silla, Goguryeo, Balhae, Taebong, Goryeo, Joseon, and the Korean Empire. Dangun-giwon, the era name originating from the foundation of Gojoseon is also widely used in Korea as an indication of long civilisation of Korea.[1]

Korean era name
Revised RomanizationYeonho

List of Korean era names


  1. Yeongnak (永樂, 영락 "Eternal Happiness" : 391–413, during the reign of King Gwanggaeto the Great.)
  • Note: The following era names are found on various Goguryeo artifacts, but the actual years of usage are unclear.
  1. Yeonsu (延壽, 연수 "Enduring Life" : 413 - 491 during the reign of King Jangsu or 270 - 292, during the reign of King Seocheon or 331 - 371, during the reign of King Gogugwon.)
  2. Yeon-ga (延嘉, 연가 "Enduring Excellence": 292 - 300, during the reign of King Bongsang or 531 - 545, during the reign of King Anwon.)
  3. Geonheung (建興, 건흥 "Establishment of Prosperity" : 413 - 491, during the reign of King Jangsu.)
  4. Yeonggang (永康, 영강 "Eternal Peace": 545 - 559, during the reign of King Yangwon.)


  1. Geon-won (건원, 建元 "First Establishment" : 536 - 551), during the reign of King Beopheung and King Jinheung)
  2. Gaeguk (개국, 開國 "Opening of the Country" : 551 - 567), during the reign of King Jinheung)
  3. Daechang (대창, 大昌 "Great Light": 568 - 572), during the reign of King Jinheung)
  4. Hongje (홍제, 鴻濟 "Vast Relief" : 572 - 583), during the reign of King Jinheung, King Jinji and King Jinpyeong)
  5. Geonbok (건복, 建福 "Establishment of Blessings" : 584 - 634), during the reign of King Jinpyeong and Queen Seondeok)
  6. Inpyeong (인평, 仁平 "Even Benevolence" : 634 - 647, during the reign of Queen Seondeok)
  7. Taehwa (태화, 太和 "Great Harmony": 647 - 650, during the reign of Queen Jindeok)
  • In 650, Silla stopped using its own era names and adopted those of Tang China.
  1. Gyeong-un (慶雲, 경운 "Clouds of Celebration": 822 during the reign of Kim Heonchang's Jang-an state.)


  1. Cheontong (天統, 천통 "Authority of Heaven": 699 - 718, during the reign of King Go.)
  2. Inan (仁安, 인안 "Benevolence and Good": 719 - 736, during the reign of King Mu.)
  3. Daeheung (大興, 대흥 "Great Prosperity": 737 - 793, during the reign of King Mun.)
  4. Boryeok (寶曆, 보력 "Precious Era": 774-?, at least until 781, during the reign of King Mun)
  5. Jungheung (中興, 중흥 "Middle Prosperity":794, during the reign of King Seong.)
  6. Jeongnyeok (正曆, 정력 "Justice Era": 795 - 808 during the reign of King Gang.)
  7. Yeongdeok (永德, 영덕 "Eternal Virtue": 809 - 812 during the reign of King Jeong.)
  8. Jujak (朱雀, 주작 "Sparrow Cinnabar": 813 - 817 during the reign of King Hui.)
  9. Taesi (太始, 태시 "Great Beginning": 817 - 818 during the reign of King Gan.)
  10. Geonheung (建興, 건흥 "Founding of Prosperity": 818 - 820 during the reign of King Seon.)
  11. Hamhwa (咸和, 함화 "United Peace": 830 - 858 during the reign of King Dae Ijin.)
  • Note : King Dae Ijin, posthumous names are unknown, so usually they're called by their personal names.

Jeong-an Kingdom

  1. Wonheung (元興, 원흥 "First Prosperity":976 - 986 during the reign of Oh Hyeon-myeong.)

Heung-Yo Kingdom

  1. Cheongyeong (天慶, 천경 ("Heavenly Celebration"): 1029 - 1030 during the reign of Dae Yeon-Rim.)

Daewon Kingdom

  1. Yeunggi (隆基, 융기 ("Prosperous Foundation") : 1116 during the reign of Go Yeong-Chang.)

Later Baekje

  1. Jeonggae (正開, 정개 ("Proper Opening"): 900 - 936 during the reign of Gyeon Hwon)


All these era names were used during the reign of King Gung-ye, who ruled Taebong from 901 to 918.

  1. Mutae (武泰, 무태 "Exalted Military" : 904 - 905 during the reign of Gung Ye)
  2. Seongchaek (聖冊, 성책 "Sacred Book" : 905 - 910 during the reign of Gung Ye)
  3. Sudeok Manse (水德萬歲, 수덕만세 "Ten Thousand Years of Flowing Power": 911 - 914 during the reign of Gung Ye)
  4. Jeonggae (政開, 정개 "Opening Rule" : 914 - 918 during the reign of Gung Ye)
  • Note : In 918, General Wang Geon led a revolution, became the new emperor, and changed the country's name to Goryeo.

Goryeo Dynasty

  1. Cheonsu (天授, 천수 "Transmission of Heaven" : 918 - 933 during the reign of King Taejo.)
  2. Gwangdeok (光德, 광덕 "Brilliant Power" : 950 - 951 during the reign of King Gwangjong.)
  3. Junpung (峻豊, 준풍 "Towering Plenty" : 960 - 963 during the reign of King Gwangjong.)
  • Cheongae (天開, 천개 "Opening of Heaven" : 1135 - 1136 during the reign of Myo Cheong's Daewi state.)

Joseon Dynasty (1392 ~ 1897)

The Joseon Dynasty of Korea integrated itself into the Chinese tributary sphere, and consequently used the era names of the Ming and Qing Dynasties of China for most of its existence.

Chinese era names are no longer used in modern Korean historiography.

Ming era names

Era name in KoreanMing emperorHangulHanjaMeaningPeriodJoseon kingsNotes
HongmuHongwu Emperor홍무洪武Vast martiality1392 - 1398Taejo, JeongjongFirst era name in use during the Joseon Dynasty
GeonmunJianwen Emperor건문建文Establishing civility1399 - 1402Jeongjong, Taejong
YeongrakYongle Emperor영락永樂Perpetual happiness1402 - 1424Taejong, Sejong
HonghuiHongxi Emperor홍희洪熙Vast brightness1425Sejong
SeondeokXuande Emperor선덕宣德Proclamation of virtue1426 - 1435Sejong
JeongtongEmperor Yingzong of Ming정통正統Rectification of governance1436 - 1449Sejong
GyeongtaeJingtai Emperor경태景泰Exalted view1450 - 1457Sejong, Munjong, Danjong, Sejo
CheonsunEmperor Yingzong of Ming천순天順Obedience to Heaven1457 - 1464Sejo
SeonghwaChenghua Emperor성화成化Accomplished Change1465 - 1487Sejo, Yejong, Seongjong
HongchiHongzhi Emperor홍치弘治Great government1488 - 1505Seongjong, Yeonsangun
JeongdeokZhengde Emperor정덕正德Rectification of virtue1506 - 1521Yeonsangun, Jungjong
GajeongJiajing Emperor가정嘉靖Admirable tranquility1522 - 1567Jungjong, Injong, Myeongjong, Seonjo
YunggyeongLongqing Emperor융경隆慶Great celebration1568 - 1572Seonjo
MallyeokWanli Emperor만력萬曆Ten thousand calendars1573 - 1620Seonjo, Gwanghaegun
CheongyeTianqi Emperor천계天啟Heavenly opening1621 - 1627Gwanghaegun, Injo
SungjeongChongzhen Emperor숭정崇禎Honorable and auspicious1627 - 1637InjoKorea was forced to officially use Qing era names after the second Manchu invasion of Korea in 1636 and 1637.[2] The era name Chongzhen, continued to be used informally after 1637 well into the nineteenth century, as the Manchu Qing Dynasty was often considered illegitimate by Korean scholars.[3]

Independent era names

  1. Gaeguk (개국; 開國; "Nation's Opening"): used for the reign of Gojong of Joseon 1894–1895
  2. Geonyang (건양; 建陽; "Adopting Solar Calendar"): used for the reign of Gojong of Joseon 1896–1897

Korean Empire

  1. Gwangmu (광무; 光武; "Bright Valour"): used for the reign of Gojong of Korea, 1897–1907
  2. Yunghui (융희; 隆熙; "Prosperous Brilliance"): used for the reign of Sunjong of Korea, 1907–1910

Republic of Korea

  1. Daehan minguk (대한민국, 大韓民國 "Great Korean Republic" : 1948)
  2. Dangun-giwon (단군기원, 檀君紀元 "First Age of Lord Dangun" : 1948-1961)
  3. Seoryeok-giwon (서력기원, 西曆紀元, 1962-)

Democratic People's Republic of Korea

  1. Juche (주체, 主體 : 1912-)

Usage of Non-Korean Era names

Chinese era names were widely used, especially in the Joseon dynasty. During the Japanese occupation, Imperial Japan enforced its own era system.

Juche Calendar

The North Korean government and associated organizations use a variation of the Gregorian calendar with a Juche year based on April 15, 1912 CE, the date of birth of Kim Il-sung, as year 1. There is no Juche year 0. The calendar was introduced in 1997. Months are unchanged from those in the standard Gregorian calendar. In many instances, the Juche year is given after the CE year, for example, 10 December 2019 Juche 108. But in North Korean publications, the Juche year is usually placed before the corresponding CE year, as in Juche 108 (2019).


  1. http://www.clickkorea.org/arts/search/vocabulary/html/eng_vocabulary_searchview.asp?FCode=2&pFCode=0&pageName=word&vnum=775&page=3&qt=k_title&qs=다
  2. "*Annals of the Joseon Dynasty,* third entry of February 28 1637". “自今以後, 大小文書, 皆用崇德年號, 以此意, 下諭于兩西及咸鏡監、兵使爲當。” 答曰: “知道。”
  3. Kim Haboush, JaHyun (2005), "Contesting Chinese Time, Nationalizing Temporal Space: Temporal Inscription in Late Chosǒn Korea", in Lynn A. Struve (ed.), Time, Temporality, and Imperial Transition, Honolulu: University of Hawai'i Press, pp. 115–141, ISBN 0-8248-2827-5.


See also

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