Korean Confucius descendants trace back to ancestor of family tree

( Xinhua ) Updated: 2016-03-11 16:53:59

Descendants of ancient Chinese philosopher Confucius are trying to join efforts for research on which generation of the family brought the bloodline from China to the Korean Peninsula.

Eight Korean descendants of Confucius, on behalf of all their kin living in the Republic of Korea (ROK), presented new evidences to suggest that the first generation of the family might have traveled from China to settle on the Korean Peninsula at least 200 years earlier than it was previously thought.

It is generally believed that descendants of Confucius (551 BC-479 BC) flourished on the Korean Peninsula after the 54th-generation descendant Kong Shao arrived there at the end of the Yuan Dynasty (1279-1368).

The ROK representatives presented photocopied documents to the Confucius Genealogy Constant Compilation Committee based in Qufu of East China's Shandong province on Thursday indicating that the time of the first descendant might date back to Song Dynasty (960-1279), 200 earlier than the Yuan Dynasty.

Confucius descendants from China and ROK held a ritual commemorating their ancestors at the Confucius temple on Thursday, burning incense and kowtowing to a statue of their shared ancestor, a must before discussing major family affairs such as updating family trees.

ROK delegation member Kong Daihick, also head of the Korean Confucius Descendants Association, said that their research showed that the first Confucius descendant to set foot in the Korean Peninsula was Kong Deshou, a 47th-generation rather than Kong Shao.

The committee members from the China side decided the current verifying materials were inadequate.

The descendants agreed that both sides would cooperate to continue research into the first generation to leave China as it serves as a linking point for the whole Korean branch of the family tree.

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