Nation celebrates Korean alphabet's creation on 567th Hangul DayUpdated: 2013-10-09 22:51:14 (KST)
Some 3-thousand citizens, cultural leaders. and Prime Minister Chung Hong-won gathered in central Seoul for a national ceremony, marking the 567th anniversary of the invention and proclamation of Hangul, the Korean alphabet.
"Hangul is the world's only writing system that has been proclaimed with a clear purpose and created with scientific principles. Its scientific superiority is globally acknowledged and it is a piece of world heritage for humankind."
At the ceremony, six individuals and two groups were given national awards of merit for their contributions to research and promotion of the Korean language, followed by performances celebrating the event.
This year's Hangul Day is even more special, because it is the first time in 23 years that it is being celebrated as a national holiday, after having been stripped of its designation back in 1991.
"That's good news for most people here in Korea, who get a day off to mark the occasion."
Citizens and visitors enjoyed the perfect autumn weather with their loved ones, while reflecting on the meaning of the day.
"I came out to Gwanghwamun Plaza with my family to celebrate Hangul Day. I have great appreciation for our unique Korean writing system."
"Korean is actually really easy and fun, and I came Gwanghwamun for Hagul Day because of course we have a class off, and I wanted to see the King Sejong statue because he invented Hangul."
Hangul was invented by King Sejong the Great in the 15th century to make it easier for ordinary people to read and write and it replaced the Chinese characters that were used to express the Korean language at the time.
With just 24 consonants and vowels, Hangul can express a wide range of phonetic sounds using simple letters.
It has often been praised by linguists as one of the most scientific, easy-to-learn alphabets in the world.
A series of events will be held around the nation throughout the week in celebration of the creation of Hangul.
Park Ji-won, Arirang News.
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