Arirang News
  Updated : 2005-07-24 12:00:00 KST
Funeral Service Held for Korea's Last Heir to Royal Throne Prince Yi Gu
 
 
Korea's last direct heir to Joseon Dynasty's royal throne Prince Lee Gu has been laid to rest next to his parents at a royal tomb in the outskirts of Seoul.
Hundreds of guests attended Lee's funeral to pay their last respects.
Park Hyong-ki reports.

Prince Lee Gu the only-surviving son of the Korean Joseon Dynasty's last Crown Prince Yongchin was laid to rest on Sunday.
He was buried next to his parents at the Hongneung Royal Tomb in Namyangju, Gyeonggi Province.
Before Lee's burial. a funeral was held in Seoul's royal residence of Changdoek Palace.
Among some 600 guests Prime Minister Lee Hae-chan attended the funeral and expressed his deepest respect for the last heir to Korea's royal throne.
Prince Lee Gu died of a heart attack in Tokyo, Japan on July 16th at the age of 74.
The death of Lee signifies the end of Korea's direct royal lineage.
His body was brought from Japan on July 20th and placed at Nakseon Hall in Changdeok Palace for Koreans to pay their respects.
Lee Gu was born in 1931 in Japan the second son to his father and Japanese mother during the Japanese colonial rule over the Korean Peninsula.
His parent's marriage was arranged by the Japanese colonial government to end the Korean royal line.
His older brother, Prince Lee Jin died of poisoning just after his birth.
Growing up in Japan as a hostage Prince Lee Gu never learnt the Korean language and Korean customs.
After studying in the United States and marrying an American woman he came to Korea with his parents and stayed at Changdoek Palace in the 1960s.
But as Lee Gu had difficulties adjusting to life in Korea and experienced some business failures he left for Tokyo but continued to make occasional visits to Seoul.
He divorced his wife in the 1980s with no children to carry on his royal name.
In accordance with the late prince's wishes, his nephew, Lee Won will succeed Korea's royal line.
Park Hyong-ki, Arirang News.
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