(Translation) 鄭道傳 朝鮮經國典 序
|Korean(RR)||조선경국전 서(Joseongyeonggukjeon seo)|
|Key Concepts||Sets up the government|
|Translator(s)||Participants of 2018 Summer Hanmun Workshop (Advanced Translation Group)|
Jeong Dojeon (鄭道傳；1342-1398; Sambong 三峯) served as the Prime Minister (or First Chief State Councilor) of Joseon during the period from 1392 to 1398. He was killed in 1398 by Yi Bang-won (李芳遠,1367-1422) who would be King Taejong (r. 1400∼1418) of the Joseon dynasty. Jeong Dojeon was an adviser to Yi Seong-gye and also the principal architect of the Joseon state: he framed the Joseon dynasty's ideological, institutional, and legal frameworks which would endure for five centuries to come. Statutes of Governance for the Joseon State (Joseon Gyeong Gukjeon 朝鮮經國典), which was completed and presented to the king in 1394, reflects Jeong's visions of good government. As the systematic framework of the Joseon state, this book would influence Joseon politics for five centuries. This book states the way by which the king ought to rule the country and defines the roles and responsibilities of bureaucrats at all levels. It also served as an indispensable basis for statutes and ordinances promulgated throughout the Joseon dynasty.
The following document is the preface to Joseon Gyeong Gukjeon（朝鲜经国典), composed by the royal decree. Joseon Gyeong Gukjeon(朝鲜经国典) literally means the statutes of governing for the Joseon state. In the preface, the writer justifies their work by reference to the Confucian classics. At the beginning of this preface, he cites the preamble section of the Rituals of Zhou (Zhouli 周禮), to map out the constitutional framework of the new government. He refers to the Rituals of Zhou and discussed the Six Canons that are believed to be the standard ways of governing a polity, including the Canon of State（治典), the Canon of Education（教典）, the Canon of Ritual（礼典), the Canon of War（政典）, the Canon of Justice（刑典）, the Canon of Works（事典). In the preface, Jeong defines these Six Canons as to road to good government. This document shows that the Confucian Classics framed the very structures of the Joseon state and informed its fundamental political values.
宸心是悅。付諸有司藏之金樻。爰命臣揔。序其編端。臣揔竊伏惟念。一代之興。必有一代之制作。苟非明良相得。有同魚水。則何以臻此焉。今我 殿下推赤心。委任宰相。而三司公以天人之學。經濟之才。贊襄丕基。馳聘雄文。克成大典。非唯有補於 殿下乙夜之覽。且爲子孫萬世之龜鑑也。於戲。其至矣乎。若視爲文具。則書自書人自人矣。何益於治道哉。子思之作中庸也。論九經曰。其所以行之者一也。一者何謂。誠也。臣於是書。亦以此言焉。
Preface to the Statutes of the Governance of Joseon
“The six principles of administering a country have been created for a long time. If we look back on the Rituals of Zhou, the first is the Canon of State（治典）for administering [the regional states], managing the bureaucracy, and disciplining the people. The second is the Canon of Education（教典）for pacifying the regional states, instructing the bureaucracy, and soothing the people. The third is the Canon of Ritual (礼典) for harmonizing the regional states, unifying the bureaucracy, and coordinating the people. The fourth is the Canon of War（政典）for pacifying the regional states, rectifying hundreds of officials, and bringing equity to the people. The fifth is the Canon of Justice for interrogating the states, punishing the officials, and investigating the people. The sixth is the Canon of Works（事典） for enriching the regional states, appointing hundreds of officials, and letting the people live and flourish. Governing concerns bureaucracy. Education concerns rituals. War concerns the military. Work concerns construction.
- How could it be possible for the new dynasty to set up their government according to the principles from the The Rites of Zhou？
- How does the author justify the legitimacy of the the new dynasty and the compilation of Joseon Gyeong Gukjeon?