[Vol. 21 No. 1] EVALUATION OF KŪSHNĀMA AS A HISTORICAL SOURCE IN REGARD TO DESCRIPTIONS OF BASĪLĀ

Title
Title EVALUATION OF KŪSHNĀMA AS A HISTORICAL SOURCE IN REGARD TO DESCRIPTIONS OF BASĪLĀ
Author
Author

Lee Hee Soo

Volume

Vol. 21 No. 1

Pages

pp. 15~36 (all 22 pages) 

Publication Date

2018.06.15

Keyword

Kūshnāma, Basīlā, Silla, Abtin, Ancient Korea-Iran Relations, Sassanid

Abstract

This article examines the descriptions of Basīlā in the Kūshnāma ( كوش نامھ ) and determines the credibility of those descriptions as historical evidence. Kūshnāma is a Persian epic and part of a mythical history of Iran written by Hakim Irānshān b. Abī al-Khayr between 1108 and 1111 CE. Many scholars argue that Basīlā in Kūshnāma can be identified with the Silla Kingdom (57 BCE–935 CE) of ancient Korea for many reasons. First, the descriptions of Basīlā in Kūshnāma largely correspond to those of Sīlā/al-Sīlā in contemporary Islamic texts. Second, in some Muslim historical and geographical works such as Masālek wa Mamālek by Sāed bin Ali Jorjāni (1476 CE), and Ājāyib al-Makhlughāt by Muhammad bin Ahmad Tusi (1161–1178 CE), we find that Basīlā is used, together with Sīlā/al-Sīlā, to describe the same area of the Korean peninsula. With the advent of Islam, references to Korea found in twenty-three Islamic sources written between the ninth and sixteenth centuries by eighteen Muslim scholars, including Ibn Khurdādbih (d. 886 CE), Sulaiman al-Tajir (written around 850 CE), and al-Mas’udi (d.957 CE), suggest that Muslims’ influence had already reached the Korean peninsula by that time.

Before the discovery of Kūshnāma, however, no documents or epics had been found that describe ancient relations between Iran and Silla in such a detailed manner. In this sense, an in-depth study of Kūshnāma focusing on its descriptions of “Basīlā” will contribute to expanding our understanding of pre-modern relations between the Middle East and Korea. Because both historical events and mythological beliefs of ancient Persia are incorporated in Kūshnāma, this article will consider to what extent we can accept descriptions within Kūshnāma to be reliable historical evidence.

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461 [Vol. 21 No. 2] EDITOR'S NOTE ACTA KOREANA 2018.12.15 847
460 [Vol. 21 No. 2] GUEST EDITOR’S NOTE: THE INSIDERS AND OUTSIDERS OF KOREAN CULTURE OLGA FEDORENKO 2018.12.15 968
459 [Vol. 21 No. 2] WORSHIPING THE GODDESSES OF P’ALBONG MOUNTAIN: REGIONAL VARIATION, AUTHENTICITY, AND TRADITION CLARK W. SORENSEN 2018.12.15 827
458 [Vol. 21 No. 2] AT THE GATES OF BABEL: THE GLOBALIZATION OF KOREAN LITERATURE AS WORLD LITERATURE JENNY WANG MEDINA 2018.12.15 855
457 [Vol. 21 No. 2] EVERYWHERE AND NOWHERE: AN ETHNOMUSICOLOGIST LIVING AND WORKING IN KOREA HILARY VANESSA FINCHUM-SUNG 2018.12.15 816
456 [Vol. 21 No. 2] NO FRAME TO FIT IT ALL: AN AUTOETHNOGRAPHY ON TEACHING UNDERGRADUATE KOREAN STUDIES, ON AND OFF THE PENINSULA CEDARBOUGH T. SAEJI 2018.12.15 832
455 [Vol. 21 No. 2] TREE MOTIFS IN SEVENTH-CENTURY SILLA STELES KIM SUNKYUNG 2018.12.15 821
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453 [Vol. 21 No.2] NEW TRENDS IN COMMENTARY ON THE CONFUCIAN CLASSICS: CHARACTERISTICS, DIFFERENCES, AND SIGNIFICANCE OF RHETORICALLY ORIENTED EXEGESES OF THE MENGZI YOU MINJUNG 2018.12.15 864
452 [Vol. 21 No.2] RESEMBLING THE OPPONENT: NATIONALIST AND COLONIALIST HISTORIOGRAPHIES IN MODERN KOREA SHIN SEUNGYOP 2018.12.15 803
451 [Vol. 21 No. 2] THE GENEALOGY OF KOREAN MODERNISM IN POETRY: FOCUS ON TRANSLATIONS OF W. B. YEATS KIM HANSUNG AND CHOI JUNGA 2018.12.15 812
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