Various stone cultural assets, such as stone pagoda, stone lantern, and monk stupa are located around the forest trail along the National Museum of Korea’s Open Garden themed on Korean traditional landscape. Also, Dragon Falls located on the deep side of the forest. With such stone cultural assets and Dragon Falls, the open garden serves as the urban rest area in harmony with arts and nature. Walk along the trail in the museum garden, find hidden traditional relic and attractions, and meet mysterious stories related to them.
Entering the south gate, a front gate of National Museum of Korea, a wide pond is located first. Geoul Pond reflects the whole museum on the water. At the edge of the pond, a pavilion named Cheongjajeong is placed with its pillars inside the pond. Cheongjajeong was made to celebrate the 100 anniversary of museum in Korea and the octagonal-shape pavilion has a beautiful blue roof.
Mir is an old Korean word meaning dragon. The name originated from the place named Yongsan, where the museum is located. The museum garden where Mir Falls, Mir Pond, and Mir Bridge are located is themed on traditional Korean landscape. Dragon Falls is hidden in the secret garden deep inside the forest.
Bosingak Bell is a Buddhist bell used at a Buddhist temple. This bell was made in 1468 (14th year of King Sejong). Bosingak Bell was located in Jeongneung Temple inside Queen Shinduk’s tomb named Jeongneung Royal Tomb. Queen Shinduk was the second queen of King Taejo during Joseon Dynasty. After Jeongneung Temple disappeared, Bosingak Bell was moved to Wongaksa Temple and kept at bell tower after Japanese invasion in 1592. Bosingak Bell was used at Bosingak Pavilion at Jongno, Seoul for watch-night bell until 1985. The period where Bosingak Bell was made is clear as an inscription remains on the bell.
Stone Buddha embodies the shape of Buddha. Stone Buddha didn’t exist for a while when Buddha was alive and even after he entered into Nirvana. This is because Buddha opposed Stone Buddha to prevent deification of him. As a result, Stone Buddha didn’t exist until 500 years after the death of Buddha. It is said that people in Gandhara and Mathura started making Stone Buddha around the same time in the first century. In Korea, Stone Buddha has been made continuously after Buddhism was introduced. In the museum’s garden, there are two stone statues made during Goryeo Dynasty.
In the broad term, pagoda is a sculpture made to celebrate certain event. In pagoda garden, there are numerous stone pagodas made from Unified Silla period to Goryeo Dynasty. There is also a stone lantern which was placed in front of Buddhist sanctuary in a temple. In Pagoda Garden, a stupa of Nawong who was a great Buddhist monk during the end of Goryeo Dynasty is placed, too.