Imjin Changch'o: Admiral Yi Sun-Sin's Memorials to Court
Product Descriptionby Admiral Sun-Sin Yi, Tae-hung Ha (translation), Chong-young Lee (editor)
size: 223*152mm; 276 pages. publisher: Yonsei University Press, 1981.
About this book
"On reaching Tangp'o at nightfall our men gathered wood and drew water, when Kim Ch'on-son, a cowherd on that island, came running toward our warships and reported." 'Over seventy enemy vessels - large, medium, and small - sailed out form the sea off Yongdungp'o today at 2: 00 p.m., and entered Kyonnaeryang, where they are riding at anchor now.'
First, I ordered out five or six board-roofed vanguard ships to make a chase, feigning a surprise attack. The enemy vessels under full sail pursued our ships, which barely escaped out of the bay and returned to their base. The enemy vessels kept pursuing ours until they came out to the open sea. Hereupon, I commanded my ships' captains to lineup in 'Crane-Wing' formation to surround the enemy vessels in a semi-circle, then I ordered 'Charge!' Our ships dashed forward with the boom of cannon marked 'Earth' 'Black', and 'Victory, breaking two of three of the enemy vessels into pieces. Then the enemy's other vessels, stricken with terror, scattered and fled in all directions in great confusion. Our officers and men, and local officials on board shouted 'Victory!' and darted at flying speed, vying with one another as they hailed down arrows and bullets like storm and thunder, burning the enemy vessels and slaughtering his warriors completely in a single battle."
Thus did Admiral Yi Sun-sin report to the throne on the Sea Battle of Hansando, (Memorial #9) sometimes called the Salamis of Korea, because that single action determined the balance of sea-power, frustrating Hideyoshi's plan for the conquest of Korea and China by cutting off the transportation of troops and supplies along the Korean coast. Although the war continued for several years, the outcome was determined on the sea.
These Memorials to the Court not only give the first-hand official accounts of the major sea battles but also shed important light on the problems of logistics and on the political and social organization of the day.
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