An account of the life of the first westerners in Korea (1653-1666).
The Dutch Come to Korea is the absorbing story of the shipwreck of a Dutch ship, the Sparrow Hawk, in Korea in the mid-17th century, and of the adventures of the Dutch crew during their thirteen years of captivity in the “Hermit Kingdom.” The result was the first book on Korea to be published in Europe. Hendrick Hamel’s fascinating account of the shipwreck on Cheju Island, and the life of the Dutchmen among the Koreans in Korea ovr 300 years ago. Professor Ledyard’s book draws upon the extensive documentation of Hamel’s account to be found in Korean Yi Dynasty source materials, as well as on Dutch and Japanese materials.
The book, in nine chapters, narrates the adventures of the Dutch sailors, beginning with the shipwreck on Cheju; their meeting with another Dutch compatriot, a sailor who had lived in Korea for years and knew some Korean; their trip to Seoul and their life in the Korean capitol; the abortive attempt to escape, involving the Manchu Envoy; their life in Cholla Province, and their final escape from Korea tot the Dutch settlement in Nagasaki, Japan.The book also include an abundance of comprehensive notes on the text, as well as a bibliography, and Churchill’s full text of Hamel’s Narrative. Two appendices include bibliographic notes on Hamel’s Narrative and the text of the interrogation of Hamel by the Japanese authorities in Nagasaki. There are eight full-page illustrations from a Dutch edition of Hamel’s Narrative, and a map showing the travels of the Dutch sailors while in Korea.
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