Today I would like to tell you about the most important Korean beast, about the Korean Tigre.
As you know, a Ussuri Tiger is found in Korea, the one that meets in the Russian Far East, as well as in Chinese Manchuria. Over the centuries, the tiger is considered to be a national symbol in Korea, performing here about the same role here, which in Russia belongs to the bear. Tiger is a favorite hero of Korean fairy tales, the king of animals, wise, mighty, strong, sometimes – fierce, and sometimes – naive and kind. It is not by chance that it was Tigrenok Khodori who became a symbol of the 1988 Seoul Olympiad.
Oh neither sad, in modern South Korea tigers in the will no longer meet. One of the most populated countries of the planet leaves large predators not so much space for the usual existence, because the tiger in search of food takes place 80-100 kilometers a day.
However, just a few centuries ago Tigers were found in Korea everywhere. Hunting for tigers is depicted on the frescoes of gravestone mounds, which belongs to the middle of the first millennium. Professional tigers always caused considerable respect in Korea, and during the wars they gained special detachments, which were entrusted by the most dangerous tasks. Of course, it was necessary to have a lot of courage in order to go on a huge beast with a spear, but just so hunted on tigers in centuries. Only from the XVII century, the hunters appeared and flint rifles, but they were not very reliable, so heavy rhothe near a hundred years ago was the main weapon of the hunter.
Now it is difficult to believe it, but only a hundred fifty years ago, Tigers not only wandered around Seoul’s neighborhood, but also represented a considerable danger for a lonely traveler! In some areas in the north of the country, people at night tried not to leave their homes, so as not to fall the victim of the tige. However, new times, which came to Korea at the end of the XIX century, determined the fate of the Tiger. A rifling rifle came to a shift of flint rifle and horns. The hunt for tigers turned into a fairly safe and prestigious sport, which the officials of the Japanese colonial administration were engaged in enthusiastically (this seemed so romantic – to kill a tiger), and just rich people. As a result, for some few decades, the tiger was exterminated throughout the southern part of the Korean Peninsula. The last tiger on the territory of the present South Korea was killed in 1922. In the province of North Kensen, which is in the southern part of the country. In 1946. There was a last reliably confirmed meeting with a tiger (this time on the east coast, in the mountains of Saraksan). What is happening in
North Korea – not clear. It is possible that in the extreme north, several tigers survived to this day, but it cannot be approved with complete confidence it is impossible.
Although Koreans are usually called "His" Tiger "Korean", His scientific name "Ussuriysky", And he meets not only in Korea, but also in China and Russia. Now about 200 Ussuri tigers left in the wild. In addition, about 150 tigers are in zoos. A few years ago, a couple of tigers arrived in the Seoul Zoo, which is located in Kwachon, the suburbs of the Korean capital. These tigers were transferred to the Chinese Government. What kind of attention is paid to them is evidenced by the fact that the issue of tigers was discussed at the highest level during the visit of the Korean President in the PRC!
So now in South Korea tigers only in the zoo. However, the memory of those, not so long, times, when the tigers met right behind the rustic outcrolisher, and so much alive in numerous fairy tales and beliefs. And among these legends there are rather curious.
For example, in the old days, when a woman went to the long road, she sewed a piece of tigrine skins to the skirt. It was believed that in this case the spirit of the tiger will provide it with safety. The ruler of the county during the solemn ceremonies also recresented on the skin of the tiger, which symbolized his power and authority. Finally, it was believed that the images of a tiger in the house will scare out an unclean force, because these devices also do not want to contact the Lord of the Korean Forest. Therefore, the pictures with the image of Tigers often hung in the house itself, and at his gate. It was believed that claws tiger were also distilled off home. It is curious that this is a legend of alone and now, and now, many successful businessmen and their wives (in Korea, this public is distinguished by considerable superstitiousness) are ready to pay huge money for imported from South Asia tiger claws to then keep their homes.
Well, in the meantime, the children go to the Seoul zoo simply to see with their own eyes to see the legendary tiger, about which they heard so much in fairy tales. For them now, the tiger himself is part of the fairy tale, part of long history.