Various Methods Koreans Have Used to Survive the Winter대한민국청소년영어뉴스/KOREAN YOUTH ENGLISH NEWS
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  • 기사등록 2022-02-16 11:55:21
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Seoul experienced the coldest day after 35 years in January last year, with a temperature of negative 18.6 degrees Celsius. Some parts of the city such as Nowon-gu and Eunpyeong-gu had registered temperatures of negative 21.7 and 22.6 degrees Celsius respectively, according to the Korea Meteorological Administration. Today, we overcome this extreme cold with advanced technology, but our ancestors who lived in an era without technology overcame winter in a wise way.

People have used various kinds of ways to survive in extreme cold. At the beginning of winter, people used to make kimchi which is a typical winter food of South Korea. At this time, people prepare an amount of kimchi for one year. Not only food but also clothes were used to survive in winter. When making hanbok, a daily garment of the Joseon Dynasty, the warmth was strengthened by tightening the gap between the fabric and adding fur from animals such as rabbits and raccoons inside the fabric. The representative fur clothing is "gajot". It was made of various furs such as foxes and leopards. "Toshi", a winter item worn on the wrist, used silk and cotton on the outside. Also, it attached cotton and fur together to maintain the body temperature. However, instead of expensive cotton, the poor people wore raincoats "Dorongi" made of straw or wore neck shoes made by reversing straw.

▲ Korean traditional food, kimchi


Ondol is a Korean traditional heating method that will make hot smoke heat the entire room bypassing the gudeuljang, a flat stone used for the Korean floor heating system. People also used changhoji, traditional Korean paper made from mulberry to keep it warm. It is because if the oiled paper is attached to the doors and windows, it is the effects of warmth and insulation.

▲ Korean traditional heating system, ondol


We can get a glimpse of new wisdom in the lifestyle of our ancestors. Also, these records show the social aspects of the times as well as new wisdom.


By Wooin Gil

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