Admiral Yi Sun-shin Commemorative Festival Image

Festival Overview

  • Festival NameAdmiral Yi Sun-shin Commemorative Festival
  • Periodaround December 16 (biennial, solar calender date)
  • LocationGwaneumpo Admiral Yi's Burial Site and Noryang area
  • EventsAdmiral Yi Funeral Procession Reenactment, academic research symposium, performances, exhibits, experiential events, etc

The war that made even the king abandon his people. The Japanese invaders relentlessly advanced towards north. The kingdom was on the brink of falling into Japan's hands. but the sea of Joseon was still standing strong. Admiral Yi was still fighting to defend the people and the kingdom. Even when he was shot by an enemy and facing his death, he still worried about his country first before himself. "The battle is at its height. Do not announce my death." These last words that show Admiral Yi's love for his country were said on the east end of Noryang Strait in Namhae. This 'Battle of Noryang' was his last battle of the 7-year-long war.

In order to commemorate Admiral Yi's extraordinary love for the country and the spirit of self-sacrifice, in 2001, around April 28, the birthdate of Admiral Yi, the 'Admiral Yi Commemorative Festival' was held for 3 days. Also, in 2004, the '4th Admiral Yi's Great Battle of Noryang Festival' was held for 3 days around November 19 (lunar calender date), the date of Admiral Yi's death, to further commemorate Admiral Yi's loyalty and sacrifice.

Also, in 2010, after years of historical research, Admiral Yi's funeral procession was reenacted for the first time in 412 years under the title 'Reenactment of Admiral Yi's Funeral Procession' and also, to remember Admiral Yi's spirit of self-sacrifice and love for his country and to create a global festival utilizing Namhae's history of being the place where Admiral Yi sacrificed his life and the county's unique historical and cultural contents, a festival which includes the funeral precession reenactment was given the title, 'Admiral Yi Commemorative Festival'. The funeral procession which is the highlight of the 'Admiral Yi Commemorative Festival' involves 1,598 persons including the portrait carrier, bangsangsi (a group wearing masks that are meant to ward off evil spirits), sang-yeo (bier carriers) and flag carriers, marching from Gwaneumpo where Admiral Yi's remains are located at, to Chungnyulsa Shrine through the Admiral Yi Road which was opened in 2012. The road for this funeral procession is 5.3km long.