7. and non-aristocratic status, Yi was born into

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7.       On March 8, 1545, the 1st
year of King Injong’s reign, Yi was born into the Duksu Yi clan, a fairly poor
middle-class family. Despite their fairly poor and non-aristocratic status, Yi
was born into a well-educated family clan that emphasized and valued learning
and philosophic thought processes. Yi’s forefathers had served in fairly
high-ranking in government position. Yi’s grandfather were a member of the
reformist faction headed by statesman Jo Kwang-Jo, which was heavily repressed
by the ruler at that time, King Myungjong. Because of this connection, that
grandfather’s line of the Duksu Yi clan fell out of favor from the government
and Yi’s father, Yi Jung, could not obtain any favorable official position
within the government. Thus, his family suffered in poverty.


8.       Due to ease the living cost. Yi and his
family moved down to Ahsan, his mother’s hometown which is out from the capital
city. During the children time, Yi was a very active and have a very outstanding
intelligence. He prone towards on military inclination and he enjoyed playing
war games and always took as a commanding role. At the age of 21 in the year
1564, Yi married Miss Bang, who was the only daughter of Bang Jin, a renowned
master archer who used to be a local governor. The following year, Yi began the study of traditional Korean military
arts in archery, horse riding, and swordsmanship. This was a somewhat unusual
interest for a son of the Korean elite, who towards more on military
perspective and choose a military occupation as a future career.


9.       At the age of 28 Yi applied to take
the Kwago National Military Exam, the highest military exam in the country. He
failed the exam when he fell off of his horse while being tested for his
ability to shoot arrows while riding on horse. Even though he broke his leg
when he fell off of his horse, Yi himself got up on one leg, gathered some
willow tree branches from nearby and tied up his own broken leg. Yi took the exam
once again at the age of 32 and He passed.

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10.     After passing his examinations, he served
in various staff and command from lower to the highest position. The 1st
unit that he had been deployed was at Dongkubibo Fortress
allocated at northern side of Korea. There he has been appointed as defends
officer of Dongkubibo and had been ordered to defend the northern side from the
barbarian tribe of Yeojin. Yi worked hard and bravely by defeating there enemy
with a successful of glory. Unfortunately, instead of being praised and
rewarded for his dedication and success, Yi, adversely, was demoted and
punished to Baekuijongkun due to his uncompromising integrity and honesty that
often put him in conflict with his direct supervising officers. This demotion
was quite a severe punishment as it meant that Yi had to serve with no rank in
plain white clothing alongside common soldiers. Yi repeatedly suffered many
discharges and objections to his promotions throughout his carrier. However
time after time, he manage to pursuit and hasten up his carrier and had attempt
several of war during the Imjin War since 1592 to 1598 with a splendid victory.


11.     Yi
died during the final battle at Noryang Strait where the Korean join force with
Chinese to attack the Japanese fleet of 500 ships that was en route to the Chosun
town of Soonchon. Towards the end, after almost destroying about 200 enemy
ships, Yi was shot in the chest under his left arm. Concerned about his
soldiers’ morale, Yi told his son and his nephew, “Cover my body with shields.
The battle is in full swing. Do not reveal my death.” Soon after breathe those
words, Yi died with his shield covered on him.

Categories: Career


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