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Republic of Korea
South Korea has been
recognized as an
economy country with
some of the world's leading
corporations such as
Samsung and LG. In recent
years, a phenomenon
known as the "Korean
Wave" (or Hallyu) in which
the popularity of South
Korean film, television,
music, food and other
culture aspects has swept
most of Asia and many
other parts of the world has
brought increased attention
to the country.
Having been under the cultural sphere of China for much of its
history, substantial Chinese influences are evident in traditional
Korean culture. Koreans believe that the things that set them the most
apart from other Asian cultures are their cuisine, their language and
their hangeul script. Korea has a significant number of Christians (26%)
and Buddhists (26%). And some 46% of the country profess to follow
no particular religion.
Baseball was brought to Korea by American
missionaries in 1905. The Korean national baseball team
is regarded as one of the strongest in the world. Korean
martial arts such as taekwondo are also popular.
Korea's traditional holidays follow the lunar calendar, so
they fall on different days each year. The two biggest,
Seollal and Chuseok, are family holidays.
Seollal (설날), on the 1st day of the 1st month in the lunar
calendar, is also known as "Korean New Year". Families
gather together, eat traditional foods-especially Ddugguk
Chuseok (추석), often dubbed "Korean Thanksgiving", is
celebrated on the 15th day of the 8th lunar month of the
year (usually September-October). Koreans celebrate it by
eating traditional foods, notably a rice cake called
songpyeon (송편) and playing folk games.
Buchonnim osinnal or sawolchopa-il : means Buddha's
birthday, 8th, 4th month in the lunar calendar.
Korean cuisine is becoming
outside of Korea, especially
in other parts of East Asia.
A Korean meal is centered
around rice and soup and
likely a fish or meat dish,
invariably served with a
vast assortment of side
dishes known as banchan
The kimchi (김치
gimchi), made from
fermented cabbage and
nearly every meal. Many
different dishes are
made using kimchi for
flavoring, and kimchi is
served as a side dish
KOREANS USE CHOPSTICKS WITH A TWIST:THEY
PREFER CHOPSTICKS OF METAL.
Some etiquette pointers:
Do not leave chopsticks sticking
upright in a dish, especially rice.
Do not start eating unless the eldest at
the table has begun to eat.
Do not lift any plates or bowls off the
table while eating, because Koreans
consider that it is rude.
Kyongbokkung is also
Palace, because it is
located in the northern
part of Seoul, South
was the main
residence of the Joseon
Dinasty and it was
built in 1394,
following the design
of the Korean architect