KING SEJONG the Great felt bad that his subjects could not convey their thoughts through written expression due to widespread illiteracy. Taking practicality, creativity, his love for the people, and autonomy of the country into consideration, he created the writing system Hangeul.
Oct. 9 is Hangeul Proclamation Day, a day to look back and recall our great leader King Sejong. Though his achievement of creating Hangeul is widely known, his leadership and his love for the country are not recognized as much. However, the creation of Hangeul itself was a way of showing affection to his people. He once said, “A country finds peace only when it has a sturdy foundation, which is formed by people themselves; therefore, love for the people is essential to the country’s welfare.” Though he was a king who ruled several hundred years ago, his thoughts and leadership fit the modern people’s image of an ideal leader. The traits and nature of an ideal ruler do not seem to change that much over time.