Hangeul Day in South Korea in 2024

Hangeul Day in South Korea in 2024
Hangeul, the most scientific and logical alphabet. Image by Republic of Korea , via Flickr
  How long until Hangeul Day?
Hangeul Day
  Dates of Hangeul Day in South Korea
2025 South Korea Thu, Oct 9 National Holiday
2024 South Korea Wed, Oct 9 National Holiday
2023 South Korea Mon, Oct 9 National Holiday
2022 South Korea Sun, Oct 9 National Holiday
2021 Oct 9, Oct 11
South KoreaMon, Oct 11National Holiday (in lieu)
South KoreaSat, Oct 9National Holiday

Marks the proclamation of the Korean alphabet in 1446. Reinstated as a holiday in 2013

When is Hangeul Day?

Hangeul Day is a public holiday in South Korea, observed on October 9th each year.

The holiday marks the invention and proclamation of the Korean alphabet in 1446.

History of Hangeul Day

King Sejong the Great who was the fourth monarch of the Joseon Dynasty, along with fellow scholars invented the Korean alphabet in 1443. The promulgation of the system came afterwards with a commentary guide "Haeryebon" in 1446. The original name of the language was "Hunminjeongeum," which translates to "a set of proper sounds for the education of the entire nation."

The aim of the new alphabet was to improve literacy among the general population, who struggled to learn the complicated writing system used at that time which was based on Chinese characters.

Originally Hangeul consisted of 28 letters. This was later reduced to 24 (14 consonants and 10 vowels) and the language is regarded as so logical and phonetic that linguists worldwide consider it to be one of the most remarkable writing systems in the world. 

King Sejong himself famously said of Hanguel, "A wise man can acquaint himself with Hangeul before the morning is over; a stupid man can learn it in the space of 10 days."

Did you know?

The 14 consonants in Hanguel are grouped to represent how your mouth is shaped as you voice them.

The celebration of the proclamation as a holiday began in the mid-1920s as an attempt to preserve the Korean alphabet while under Japanese colonial rule of Korea (1910-1945), during which time Japanese was the country's official language.

Originally the day was celebrated according to the Lunar calendar, then on October 28th following some discussion about using the Gregorian or Julian (in use in 1446) calendar. In 1946 the Hangeullal(Hangeul Day in Korean) was finally specified as October 9th in 1946.

Following liberation from Japanese rule after the end of the Second World war, Hangeul Day was designated an official holiday in 1949.

Hangeul Day was excluded from the list of public holidays in 1990 for practical and economic reasons. It regained some of its status in 2005 when it was designated as a national day of celebration. It reinstated as a public holiday in 2013.

North Korea

In North Korea, the day is called Chosun-gul Day and celebrated on January 15th, which is the date in 1444 which refers to the date of the creation of the new alphabet, not its proclamation.

Sources: Korean Culture and Information Service

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