Spreading excellence of oriental swords to the world

임승민 기자l승인2018.05.15






▲ La Yeon-hee, CEO of Goryeo Swords

Located in Yuseong District, Daejeon City, Goryeo Swords has exerted great efforts to spread excellence of traditional Korean swords to the world for many years. The five master sword makers at Goryeo Swords are producing high quality Korean and Japanese swords. Master Moon Jun-ki especially learned the skills from a Japanese master and a Korean master Lee Seung-ho who has 35 years of experience. La Yeon-hee, CEO of Goryeo Swords, says “Japanese swords have been received as the best in the world. But the expensive price has turned many manias to alternatives. Chinese swords are cheaper than the Japanese but have quality issues. So, I focused on the quality that can compare with the Japanese while securing the rational price.” For this, La is actively engaged in market research, exhibitions and marketing especially in the U.S. market where the demand for oriental swords are very high. “I take a sword as an ‘art’ not a ‘weapon’. In Japan, for example, collecting swords is received as a culture. You might be surprised that there is sword department in some of art colleges in Japan” says Moon who studied sword making in Japan. Korean’s interest in swords resumed from 1990 after a long period of lost years during the colonial era and the Korean War. It is notable that Japan went back to their home island with the Korean sword making technique on which they built excellence of Japanese swords. To make a Japanese sword, 10 masters of blade, sheath, ornaments and knots normally work together; only 4 to 5 masters engage in the same level of the work in Korea. “If you know about swords, you might know the moment you grab a sword whether it is well made or not. Some can even recognize the quality by the sound of the sword splitting the wind. It is our job to bring back the glory and the excellence of the traditional Korean swords and spread the beauty to the world.”  

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Jon Kim powerkorea_j@naver.com

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