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Mayor Meets Confucian Scholars from South Korea

On January 18, Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je met with a visiting delegation of Korean scholars of Confucianism. After his word of welcome to his guests from South Korea, he recalled that in 2017, a Taipei City Government delegation visited Andong in North Gyeongsang Province, a capital of spiritual culture and the center of Confucianism in Korea.


Ko thanked Director Lee Yukwon of the Korean Confucius Institute for bringing foreign delegations to attend Confucian rites at Taipei’s Confucius Temple over the past ten years, and for the deep ties of friendship with Taipei that have developed. Director Lee gifted the mayor with a copy of the Dosan Seowon Confucian Academy Literary Papers, which the mayor reciprocated with an artistic lamp inspired by the Book of Studying and Practicing, Analects of Confucius.

Ko noted that the Sungkyunkwan Confucius Society enjoys a prominent position in South Korea, and its delegation to Taiwan is headed by Director Ye Jeong-su from headquarters. The only Confucian group in Korea, theSungkyunkwan Confucius Society represents at least 10 million Korean Confucian scholars. The existence of the Confucian Cultural Center and the Confucius Research Institute is a testament to South Korea’s continued respect for Confucianism. The Dosan Seowon Confucian Academy Literary Papers brought by the delegation dates from after the founding of the Republic of China, and contains correspondence between the prominent Confucian Scholar Yi Teogye and Confucius’ descendants, the oldest document being a letter from 1920. The collection also contains correspondences with Chinese scholar and reformer Kang Youwei, Duke Yi Jong-ho, and Duke Heng Sheng (67th-generation descendant of Confucius Kong Ling-yi, father of Kong Decheng). These letters are of great historical significance, the mayor said, adding that he greatly admires Koreans’ respect for and preservation of their heritage, setting an example worth emulating.

Towards the end of the meeting, Ko expressed his hope that continued exchanges between Taiwan and South Korea in the realm of Confucian culture would contribute to a deeper exchange between the two countries, and wished the delegation an enjoyable and fruitful visit to Taiwan.