People of the Dragons
Territory of the Gyu Dynasty projected into Modern borders
and largest city
• Chief Councillor
Bak Jyong Gang (first)|
Kong Ji Song (last)
• Establishment of the Gyu Dynasty
• Annexation of Danguk by Japan
• 1753 estimate
During its reign the Gyu Dynasty ruled over the entirity of modern Danguk, and it sought the entrenchment of Confucian ideals in Dang society, and and saw the height of classical Dang culture, trade, science, literature, and technology. The Gyu Dynasty existed in a state of peace for several centuries, until its invasion and subsequent annexation by neighbouring Japan. The state had close relations with the Korean Kingdom of Joseon until its isolationist period in the 16th century.
The Gyu Dynasty existed as an absolute hereditary monarchy which pass down on patriarchical lines. The Dragon King had absolute power, however was bound by tradition and Confucian teachings. The king had several ranks of Officials underneath him. He commanded absolute loyalty from his officials and subjects, but the officials were also expected to persuade the king to the right path if the latter was thought to be mistaken.
The dynasty has left a considerable influence on modern Dang society and culture, influencing modern etiquette, language, cultural norms, societal attitudes, superstitions and mythology. The Dang Language evolved significantly during this period, and the Chio characters were adopted during the 15th and 16th centuries. Today, the flag of the Gyu Dynasty is still used by Dang republican supporters.
First Gyu Period
Second Gyu Period
Third Gyu Period
Fourth Gyu Period
Invasion and Annexation
Government and Politics
The Dragon King was the absolute monarch of the state of Danguk, woh was believed to be the mortal representative of the Hyogsa, and the embodiment of the spirit of the Dragon that protected Danguk. The position was hereditary, and the line of succession favoured male children. While the Dragon King held absolute power, he was bound by tradition and Confucian teachings, aswell as a series of laws set by the Officials. The king had several ranks of Officials underneath him. He commanded absolute loyalty from his officials and subjects, but the officials were also expected to persuade the king to the right path if the latter was thought to be mistaken.
Natural disasters were thought to be due to the king's failings, and therefore, the kings were very sensitive to their occurrences. When there was a disaster, be it natural or not, Kings would often appeal to the Hyogsa, the dragon that founded and protects the kingdom in order to protect his subjects.
Officials and Ministries
Below the absolute power of the Dragon King, the Gyu Dynasty had an extensive system of neo-confucian bureacracy which was codified by the Gyuduchig (龍規) a form of constitution which kept the powers of the King inline. The bureacracy existed from the early 15th century, when the Gyuduchig was signed and entrenched, despite the laws, the King still held absolute power and commanded absolute loyalty from his officials.
The officials were ranked in 10 levels underneath the King, ranging from the Chief Official, down to the Ninth Rank Official, based on seniority and promotion, which was achieved through the royal decree based on examination or recommendation. Officials were appointed usually by the King, and held a form of nobility, which was not hereditary.
In addition to the officials, there was also organisations known as Ministries. The Five Ministries made up the Council which consisted of the King, the Chief Official, and the Chiefs of the Five Ministries. It met as an advisory body to the King, and had no official power that couldn't be overidden by the King himself. Each Chief Minister of the Five Ministries was a First Rank Official.
The Ministries dealt with specific areas of advisory the King, and also carried out functions that the King himself had passed to them to handle. Underneath the Chief Minister, who was a First Rank Official, there were subsequently several Second Rank Officials who served as Junior Ministers. The Five Ministries were;
- Ministry of Commerce - industry, finance, manufacturing
- Ministry of Defence - military affairs
- Ministry of Diplomacy - diplomacy, foreign affairs
- Ministry of Rites - culture, rituals, education
- Ministry of Taxation - taxation, finances, census, land policies
The Gyu Dynasty for much of its history had close relations with other Asian Kingdoms, and was involved in diplomacy and commerce with its neighbours. The dynasty had its closest relationships with for most of its history Joseon, and the state of Ming, and later the state of Qing. Trade with successive Chinese states allowed technological and literary development to thrive in Gyu.
The relationship with Joseon existed from its foundation in 1392 until the declaration of the Empire of Korea in 1897. The Gyu Dynasty along with the Empire fought against the Japanese Empire when it invaded and subsequently annexed both Korea and Danguk in the early 20th century.
In 1863 the state of Gyu had its first official contact with a North American state, when Jean-Charles Scott, a diplomatic envoy representing Sierran King Smith I, traveled to the dynastic kingdom during a general tour of Asia and presented the Emperor several gifts including a young grizzly bear cub. Contact between the two remained low-profile as Sierra held stronger relations with Japan, the more politically relevant Asian nation at the time. Naturally, any contact with what would be considered the Dang state was absolved when the Empire of Japan annexed Gyu in 1911.
Eighth Rank Officials were those in charge of Gyu's highest level administrative divsions, known as Provinces (省). The Officials were placed in charge by the Ministry of Taxation, which coordinated land laws. Often, a Royal Inspector would be sent by the King to monitor Provincial Officials with the power to dismiss corrupt provincial officials, or those considered to be not loyal. Provinces were further subdivided into Districts (區) which were the responsibility of Ninth Rank Officials, who were appointed by the Provincial Officials.
During the 18th and 19th centuries, the Gyu Dynasty has a developed trade network, with close commercial with the Koreans, Chinese, Manchurians and the Japanese. Trade with Western powers had also began to emerge, with particularly strong ties to Sierra in North America, aswell as the Spain and Britain in Europe. Danguk offered rich products to trade, ranging from jewelries, silk, ginseng, teas and porcelain. Danguk was world renowned for luxury products during this period, aswell as other products such as silver and gold, and because silver was used as currency in China, it played an important role in Danguk-China trade.
Science and Technology
The Gyu Dynasty served as Danguk's greatest period of scientific and technological advancement. Many inventors and engineers were supported by the government throughout the dynasty's history, and trade with China and Japan meant the further advancements were making their way into Dang society. The construction of major public works such as aqueducts and canals continued throughout the Gyu period, which the government subsidised, however areas in the north saw very little of this new technology.
The highpoint of Danguk astronomy was during the Gyu period, where devices were created such as celestial globes which indicated the positions of the sun, moon, and the stars influenced by the Korean inventions by Jang Yeong-sil. Later celestial globes were attuned to the seasonal variations.
During the Gyu Period, the Danguk was ruled by a noble class of Confucian scholars known as the Hagpo who took up the positions of the Dragon King, and the Nine Ranks of Officials. The Hagpo formed the top 30% of society, and Hagpo status was hereditary, however its status could be taken away as a legal punishment. Members of the Hagpo also formed the scientific elite and intelligensia, those who were considered to be highly cultured.
The majority of the population were peasant farmers, labourers, craftsmen and merchants, those who worked the land, sold their ability to work, and their wares to make a living. Most of them were somewhat poor, however some of the more skilled labourers and craftsmen were able to make a decent living. This group largely made up around 65% of the population.
Finally, roughly 10% of the population of Gyu between 1367 and the early 1800's were slaves. Slavery was abolished in 1817, and many slaves went into the Peasant class. During the time of Slavery, it was a hereditary status, but was also given as a legal punishment. There was a slave class with both government- and privately owned slaves, and the government occasionally gave slaves to citizens of higher rank. During poor harvests, many peasants would voluntarily become slaves in order to survive.
However, during the 19th century, as technological and commercial development increased significantly, the old class system was challenged. Many people became richer merchants and commercial workers, as trade with the Western world increased. Some even travelled abroad, to work in Japan and Korea, aswell as significant number of merchants who crossed the Pacific Ocean to Sierra.