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Thursday, July 5, 2012

장승 Jangseung The Guardian

장승 Jangseung is a large post of rock, or wood set up at the entrance of the village. It is the carved face is humanlike and has glaring eyes with the eyeballs swollen out, a round flat nose and open mouth. There are usually two of them. one, appearing as man wearing a hat like a crown and the other one is a woman look-alike appereance a bride wearing jokduri or another expressions.

Pic credit : snucm61.org

According to the folk beliefs, the function of Jangseung is devided into where they will be placed. If the Jangseung were placed at the enterance of the village, it was believed as a guardian to keep out the evil spirits and to protect the village.
If they were put between two villages, it is as a demarcate the boundary between the two villages and if they were put on  a roadside, they function as a gurdian and a guide-post for travellers.

References :
An Illustrated Guide to Korean Culture

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