VIRTUAL COLLECTION OF ASIAN MASTERPIECES

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Hwanghu Hwangwonsam, Wedding Dress
seosejo 3
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Why this is a
Masterpiece

It is a very beautiful gold-color wedding dress belonging to a queen.

History of the Object
This is a princess's formal dress, however less formal than the flower dress. This dress was also used by ordinary brides. Since the wedding day is supposed to be the happiest day in a woman's life, the dress is only worn while travelling to the bridegroom's house in a sedan chair. The bride also wore a colorful outer garment. After the first brief informal greeting, she changes into a flower dress and wears her hair in the O-yo style, forming a topknot with a lock. She arranges three artificial flowers in her hair; one on the top and two on the sides. Won-Sam was imported from the Tang age at Tong-il Silla and it was used as a full dress, a wedding dress worn in Korea during the Joseon period. It is still used as a wedding dress. Depending on status, there are some differences in colour and pattern. For instance, an empress wore a yellow Won-sam, a queen wore a red Won-sam, the crown princess wore a purple Won-sam and a princess wore green. Won-sam had been used as a wedding dress between 1897 and 1926 and it had a special pattern on the shoulders. There are four Bo called Oh Jo Ryong Bo on the shoulders, front and back and it was embroidered with blue, green, yellow and red cotton thread.

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Type
Costume and Jewelry 
Materials
silk 
Measurements
Width 195 cm. Length 145 cm. ; sleeve 51 cm.  
Creator name
Unknown 
Creator date
Unknown 
Where it was made
Korea 
Geography
Korea 
Time period
AD 19th century ~ AD 19th century 
Creation date
19th Century 
Function
wedding dress 
Acquisition
bought from imperial in 1973 
Copyright
 
Acknowledgements
 
Owner
Sejong University Museum 
Museum
Sejong University Museum 
Credit line
 

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