After having a summit with Korean President Park Geun-hye and other Korean and United States Government in Cheong Wa Dae on April 25, US President Obama continued with a restoration ceremony of lost Korean treasures.
The returned artifacts were looted by American soldiers during the Korean War, and include the Hwangjae Jibo and nine other seals that were used in the Joseon Dynasty for both documental and ceremonial use. In November of 2013, US customs authorities got hold of these Korean antiquities through a family of a US naval lieutenant who served in the Korean War.
Now, the public will be given a chance to visit the artifacts at The National Palace museum in Seoul.
The Hwangjae Jibo, designed in 1897 by King Gojong, holds the highest cultural significance for its symbolization of the spirit of independence of Korea. Thus, the seal represents the nation’s dignity and pride.
Korean citizens, including students, consider the return of the Korean treasures as one of the most valuable outcomes from the meeting of the two governments.
“I am truly glad that these relics were repatriated through President Obama’s visit” said Sue Kim, a high school student in Korea, in an interview with JSR.
She added, “I believe that every single one of the artifacts that have been returned to the country have immense historical values and are worthwhile assets.”
Some also think that the repatriation ceremony has great importance in terms of the relationship between Korea and the United States.
“I think this event will promote the amity between the two countries,” said Y. Moon.
“The American government has showed their respect towards our traditions and history. This will help Koreans to construct a better future and have a moment to rethink about the values of our historical properties,” he said.