House of Ki

From Roses, Tulips, & Liberty

The House of Ki, also known as the Hengdjoe Ki clan, was the royal family of Corea, Poeja, and Haboek during the 1883-1935 period. An accomplished nobleman from the clan, the future King Tedjo, founded the state of Sjakwang after overthrowing the 500-year reign of the House of Yi.


Ancient origins

The Hengdjoe Ki clan is one of the oldest continuous lineages in Corean history, and is one of three clans descendant of Emperor Kidja of Ko-tsjosan along with the Tewan San-oe and the Tsjangdju Han clans. The clan's ancestors moved south and founded a principality within the Mahan Confederacy before being expelled and settling in Hengdjoe District.

Korjo dynasty

During the reign of King Indjong of the House of Wang, Ki Soen-oe served as a Vice Prime Minister. Ki Taksang, a military official, took part in the Mushin Coup of 1170 and mentored the founder of the Cheu military regime. His descendants continued to play a large role in the military regime until its collapse in 1270. Empress Ki, daughter of military official Ki Ja-o, became the Empress of the Yuan dynasty and the first and only Corean to have served as Regent of China.

Tsjosan dynasty

Royal Consort Soekoei of the Ki clan was a favorite of King Jangdjong. Her brother, Ki Gan, was a contemporaneous politician. Several other members of the Ki clan were prominent in the early Tsjosan period.

Ki Tsjahan was a senior politician and Prime Minister who dissented against King Indjo. During the 1624 rebellion, he was executed by the State. He was posthumously honoured by King Sangdjong. The Hengdjoe Ki family remained in the good graces of the Tsjosan kings for centuries after, serving in various positions.

During the last century of Tsjosan rule, Ki Tsjangdjin was a scholar of the Kiho philosophical school and the founder of the controversial Nosa school. He was also anti-Dutch and strongly opposed Dutch ownership of Poesjan. After the Canton War, he moved from Tsjalla province to the capital of Hansjang to partake in national politics. For the next decade, he participated in public debates, advised the State on agricultural and foreign policy, and re-established dominance in the Hengdjoe District of Hansjang.

When King Hjodjang initiated the Oelhe Repression (1868-1883), Ki Tsangdjin sided with the Silhak movement and began to openly dissent against the Tsjosan dynasty and Dutch influence. His wife, the niece of prominent Catholic scholar Kwan Il-shik, influenced him to support the Corean Catholic resistance. Vocally rebellious members of the Hengdjoe Ki clan were expelled from government. Many young clan members took up arms in the countryside against the regime.

Overthrow of the Yi dynasty

Ki Tsjangdjin's son, Ki Ripbam [奇砬犯] participated in the Gyemi Coup of 1883. Due to the Hengdjoe Ki clan's influence and benevolent reputation in Hansjang, he was selected as the next monarch and the founder of the Sjakwang state. While the Ki family enjoyed their newfound royal status, many Ki scholars and politicians opposed the King and fought to maintain peace with the Qing dynasty and to expel the Dutch consul.

See also