The Info List - Treaty Of Ganghwa

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The Japan–Korea Treaty of 1876, also known as the Japan-Korea Treaty of Amity in Japanese or Treaty of Ganghwa Island
Ganghwa Island
in Korean, was made between representatives of the Empire of Japan
Empire of Japan
and the Korean Kingdom of Joseon
in 1876.[1] Negotiations were concluded on February 26, 1876.[2]


1 Background

1.1 Ascendancy of the Daewongun 1.2 Encroachment

2 Ganghwa incident 3 Treaty provisions 4 Aftermath 5 See also 6 Notes 7 References 8 Further reading

Background[edit] Ascendancy of the Daewongun[edit] In January 1864, King Cheoljong died without an heir and Gojong ascended the throne at the age of 12. However, King Gojong was too young and the new king's father, Yi Ha-ŭng, became the Daewongun or lord of the great court, and ruled Korea in his son's name.[3] Originally the term Daewongun referred to any person who was not actually the king but whose son took the throne.[3] The Daewongun initiated reforms to strengthen the monarchy at the expense of the Yangban
class. Even before the nineteenth century, the Koreans had only maintained diplomatic relations with its suzerain, China, and with neighboring Japan. Foreign trade was mainly limited to China, conducted at designated locations along the Korean-Manchurian border[4] and with Japan, through the Waegwan in Pusan.[5] By the mid-nineteenth century Westerners had come to refer to Korea as the Hermit Kingdom.[6] The Daewongun was determined to continue Korea's traditional isolationist policy and to purge the kingdom of any foreign ideas that had infiltrated into the nation.[4] The disastrous events occurring in China, including the First (1840–1842) and Second Opium wars (1856–1860), reinforced his determination to separate Korea from the rest of the world.[4] Encroachment[edit] After the Industrial Revolution
Industrial Revolution
in the 19th century, European nations began to colonize many other nations in Africa
and Asia
under the political ideology known as imperialism. Almost all of Africa
was colonized by European Powers; most of Central, South and Southeast Asia
including India were taken over by various European nations. East Asia
also was invaded by foreign powers, beginning with the (1839–1842) Opium War
Opium War
against China provoked by the British Empire and other western powers. Meanwhile, the American Asiatic Squadron under the leadership of Matthew C. Perry
Matthew C. Perry
pressured Japan to open its ports to western trade in 1854.[7] Humiliated by unequal treaties and confident that it can become a powerful imperial power, Japan embarked on a rapid transformation, successfully turning itself from a feudal society into a modern industrialized state. Ganghwa incident[edit] Main article: Ganghwa Island
Ganghwa Island

The Japanese gunboat Un'yō

In Korea, the strong dictatorship of Heungseon Daewongun
Heungseon Daewongun
was overthrown by Queen Min, who instituted a policy of closing doors to European powers. France and the United States
United States
had already made several unsuccessful attempts to begin commerce with the Joseon
dynasty, all of them happening during Heungseon Daewongun's era. However, after he was removed from power, many new officials who supported the idea of opening commerce with foreigners took power. While there was political instability, Japan developed a plan to open and exert influence on Korea before a European power could. In 1875, their plan was put into action: the Un'yō, a small Japanese warship under the command of Inoue Yoshika, was dispatched to survey coastal waters without Korean permission. On September 20, the ship reached Ganghwa Island, which had been a site of violent confrontations between Korean forces and foreign forces in the previous decade. In 1866, the island was briefly occupied by the French, and also in 1871 subject to American intervention. The memories of those confrontations were very fresh, and there was little question that the Korean garrison would shoot at any approaching foreign ship. Nonetheless, Commander Inoue ordered a small boat launched – allegedly in search of drinkable water. The Korean forts opened fire. The Un'yō brought its superior firepower to bear and silenced the Korean guns. Then it attacked another Korean port and withdrew back to Japan. Treaty provisions[edit]

Japan-Korea Treaty of Amity, February 26, 1876, Diplomatic Record Office of the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Japan employed gunboat diplomacy to press Korea to sign this unequal treaty. The pact opened up Korea, as Commodore Matthew Perry's fleet of Black Ships
Black Ships
had opened up Japan in 1853. According to the treaty, it ended Joseon's status as a tributary state of the Qing dynasty
Qing dynasty
and opened three ports to Japanese trade. The Treaty also granted the Japanese people many of the same rights in Korea that Westerners enjoyed in Japan, such as extraterritoriality. The chief treaty negotiators were Kuroda Kiyotaka, Governor of Hokkaidō, and Shin Heon, General/Minister of Joseon-dynasty Korea. The articles of the treaty were as follows:

Article 1 stated that Korea was a free nation, "an independent state enjoying the same sovereign rights as does Japan". The Japanese statement is in an attempt to detach Korea once and for all from its traditional tributary relationship with China. Article 2 stipulated that Japan and Korea would exchange envoys within fifteen months and permanently maintain diplomatic missions in each country. The Japanese would confer with the Ministry of Rites; the Korean envoy would be received by the Foreign Office. Under Article 3, Japan would use the Japanese and Chinese languages in diplomatic communiques, while Korea would use only Chinese. Article 4 terminated Tsushima's centuries-old role as a diplomatic intermediary by abolishing all agreements then existing between Korea and Tsushima. In addition to the open port of Pusan, Article 5 authorized the search in Kyongsang, Kyonggi, Chungcheong, Cholla, and Hamgyong
provinces for two more suitable seaports for Japanese trade to be opened in October 1877. Article 6 secured aid and support for ships stranded or wrecked along the Korea or Japanese coasts. Article 7 permitted any Japanese mariner to conduct surveys and mapping operations at will in the seas off the Korean Peninsula's coastline. Article 8 permitted Japanese merchants residence, unhindered trade, and the right to lease land and buildings for those purposes in the open ports. Article 9 guaranteed the freedom to conduct business without interference from either government and to trade without restrictions or prohibitions. Article 10 granted Japan the right of extraterritoriality, the one feature of previous Western treaties that was most widely resented in Asia. It not only gave foreigners a free rein to commit crimes with relative impunity, but its inclusion implied the grantor nation's system of law was either primitive, unjust, or both.


The Imperial Japanese Navy, in Pusan, on its way to Ganghwa Island, Korea, January 16th, 1876. There were 2 warships (Nisshin, Moshun), 3 troop transports, and one liner for the embassy led by Kuroda Kiyotaka.

Four Gatling guns set up in Ganghwa by Japanese troops, 1876 Kuroda mission

The following year saw a Japanese fleet led by Special
Envoy Kuroda Kiyotaka coming over to Joseon, demanding an apology from the Korean government and a commercial treaty between the two nations. The Korean government decided to accept the demand, in hope of importing some technologies to defend the country from any future invasions. However, the treaty would eventually turn out to be the first of many unequal treaties signed by Korea; It gave extraterritorial rights to Japanese citizens in Korea, and forced the Korean government to open 3 ports to Japan, specifically Busan, Incheon
and Wonsan. With the signing of its first unequal treaty, Korea became vulnerable to the influence of imperialistic powers; and later the treaty led Korea to be annexed by Japan. See also[edit]

Index of Korea-related articles History of Korea Japan–Korea disputes General Sherman incident
General Sherman incident
(1866) French campaign against Korea (1866) United States
United States
expedition to Korea (1871) Ganghwa Island incident
Ganghwa Island incident
(1875) Capitulation (treaty)


^ Chung, Young-lob. (2005). Korea Under Siege, 1876–1945: Capital Formation and Economic Transformation, p. 42., p. 42, at Google Books; excerpt, "... the initial opening of Korea's borders to the outside world came in the form of the Korea-Japan Treaty of Amity (the so-called Ganghwa Treaty)." ^ Korean Mission to the Conference on the Limitation of Armament, Washington, D.C., 1921–1922. (1922). Korea's Appeal, p. 33., p. 33, at Google Books; excerpt, "Treaty between Japan and Korea, dated February 26, 1876." ^ a b Kim 2012, p. 279. ^ a b c Kim 2012, p. 281. ^ Seth 2011, p. 193. ^ Kim, 2002 & p-279. ^ Bauer, Susan Wise; Park, Sarah (2005). The Modern Age: From Victoria's Empire to the End of the USSR. Peace Hill Press. p. 17. ISBN 9780972860338. 


Duus, Peter (1998). The Abacus and the Sword: The Japanese Penetration of Korea. University of California Press. ISBN 0-52092-090-2.  Keene, Donald (2002). Emperor of Japan: Meiji and His World, 1852–1912. New York: Columbia University Press. ISBN 0-231-12341-8.  Kim, Jinwung (2012). A History of Korea: From "Land of the Morning Calm" to States in Conflict. New York: Indiana University Press. ISBN 0-253-00024-6.  Jansen, Marius B. (2002). The Making of Modern Japan. Harvard University Press. ISBN 0-6740-0334-9.  Jansen, Marius B. (1995). The Emergence of Meiji Japan. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 0-5214-8405-7.  Seth, Michael J. (2011). A History of Korea: From Antiquity to the Present. Rowman & Littlefield. ISBN 0-742-56715-X.  Sims, Richard (1998). French Policy Towards the Bakufu and Meiji Japan 1854–95. Psychology Press. ISBN 1-87341-061-1.  Chung, Young-lob. (2005). Korea Under Siege, 1876-1945: Capital Formation and Economic Transformation. New York: Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-517830-2; OCLC 156412277 Korean Mission to the Conference on the Limitation of Armament, Washington, D.C., 1921-1922. (1922). Korea's Appeal to the Conference on Limitation of Armament. Washington: U.S. Government Printing Office. OCLC 12923609 United States. Dept. of State. (1919). Catalogue of treaties: 1814-1918. Washington: Government Printing Office. OCLC 3830508

Further reading[edit]

McDougall, Walter (1993). Let the Sea Make a Noise: Four Hundred Years of Cataclysm, Conquest, War and Folly in the North Pacific. New York: Avon Books. ISBN 9780380724673; OCLC 152400671

v t e

Treaties of Japan

period (1854–68)

Japan-US Treaty of Peace and Amity (1854) Anglo-Japanese Friendship Treaty (1854) Treaty of Commerce and Navigation between Japan and Russia (1855) Dutch-Japan Treaty of Peace and Amity (1856) (ja) Japan-US Additional Treaty (1857) Japan-Netherlands Additional Treaty (1857) (ja) Japan-Russia Additional Treaty (1857) Treaty of Amity and Commerce ( United States
United States
– Japan) (1858) Treaty of Amity and Commerce between the Netherlands and Japan (1858) (ja) Treaty of Amity and Commerce between Russia and Japan (1858) Anglo-Japanese Treaty of Amity and Commerce
Anglo-Japanese Treaty of Amity and Commerce
(1858) Treaty of Amity and Commerce between France and Japan
Treaty of Amity and Commerce between France and Japan
(1858) Treaty of Amity and Commerce between Portugal and Japan (1860) Treaty of Amity and Commerce between Prussia and Japan (1861) London Protocol (1862) Agreement of Paris (1864) (ja) Treaty of Amity and Commerce between Belgium and Japan (1866) Treaty of Amity and Commerce between Italy and Japan (1866)

Meiji period (1868–1912)

Treaty of Friendship, Commerce and Navigation between Spain and Japan (1868) Treaty of Friendship, Commerce and Navigation Austria-Hungary and Japan (1869) Sino-Japanese Friendship and Trade Treaty
Sino-Japanese Friendship and Trade Treaty
(1871) Treaty of Amity and Commerce between Hawaii and Japan (1871) Treaty of Friendship, Commerce and Navigation between Peru and Japan (1873) Engagement between Japan and China respecting Formosa of 1874 Treaty of Saint Petersburg (1875) Japan–Korea Treaty of 1876 Japan–Korea Treaty of 1882 Japan-Hawaii Labor Immigration Treaty (1884) Japan–Korea Treaty of 1885 Convention of Tientsin (1885) Declaration of Amity and Commerce between Thailand and Japan (1887) Treaty of Friendship and Commerce between Mexico and Japan (1888) Anglo-Japanese Treaty of Commerce and Navigation
Anglo-Japanese Treaty of Commerce and Navigation
(1894) Treaty of Commerce and Navigation between Japan and the USA (1894) Italo–Japanese Treaty of Commerce and Navigation (1894) Japan-China Peace Treaty (1895) Treaty of Friendship, Commerce and Navigation between Brazil and Japan (1895) Treaty for returning Fengtian Peninsula (1895) (ja) German–Japanese Treaty of Commerce and Navigation (1896) Komura-Weber Memorandum (1896) Yamagata–Lobanov Agreement (1896) Japan–China Treaty of Commerce and Navigation (1896) (ja) Franco–Japanese Treaty of Commerce and Navigation (1896) Japan–Netherlands Treaty of Commerce and Navigation (1896) Treaty of Friendship, Commerce and Navigation between Chile and Japan (1897) Treaty of Friendship, Commerce and Navigation between Argentina and Japan (1898) Nishi–Rosen Agreement (1898) Japan-Thailand Friendship, Commerce and Navigation Treaty (1898) Boxer Protocol
Boxer Protocol
(1901) Anglo-Japanese Alliance
Anglo-Japanese Alliance
(1902) Japan-China Additional Treaty of Commerce and Navigation (1903) (ja) Japan–Korea Treaty of 1904 Japan–Korea Agreement of August 1904 Japan-Russia Treaty of Peace (1905) Taft–Katsura agreement (1905) Japan–Korea Treaty of 1905 Additional Agreement of the Japan-China Treaty relating to Manchuria (1905) (ja) Franco-Japanese Treaty of 1907 Japan–Korea Treaty of 1907 Russo-Japanese Agreement of 1907 Gentlemen's Agreement of 1907 Root–Takahira Agreement (1908) Japan-China Agreement relating to Manchuria and Jiandao (1909) (ja) Russo-Japanese Agreement of 1910 Japan–Korea Treaty of 1910 Treaty of Commerce and Navigation between Japan and the USA (1911) Anglo-Japanese Treaty of Commerce and Navigation
Anglo-Japanese Treaty of Commerce and Navigation
(1911) North Pacific Fur Seal Convention of 1911 Russo-Japanese Agreement of 1912

World War I–II (1912–45)

Japan-China Treaty of 1915 Russo-Japanese Agreement of 1916 Lansing–Ishii Agreement
Lansing–Ishii Agreement
(1917) Japan-China Co-defense Military Pact (1918) (ja) Treaty of Versailles
Treaty of Versailles
(1919) Covenant of the League of Nations
Covenant of the League of Nations
(1919) Treaty of Saint-Germain-en-Laye (1919) Treaty of Neuilly-sur-Seine
Treaty of Neuilly-sur-Seine
(1919) Svalbard Treaty
Svalbard Treaty
(1920) Gongota Agreement of 1920 Treaty of Sèvres
Treaty of Sèvres
(1920) Treaty of Trianon
Treaty of Trianon
(1921) Four-Power Treaty (1921) Nine-Power Treaty
Nine-Power Treaty
(1922) Treaty concerning solution of Shandong issues (1922) (ja) Washington Naval Treaty
Washington Naval Treaty
(1922) Treaty of Lausanne
Treaty of Lausanne
(1923) Klaipėda Convention
Klaipėda Convention
(1924) Soviet–Japanese Basic Convention (1925) German–Japanese Treaty of Commerce and Navigation (1927) Kellogg–Briand Pact
Kellogg–Briand Pact
(1928) Japan-China Customs Agreement (1930) London Naval Treaty
London Naval Treaty
(1930) Cease Fire Agreement in Shanghai (1932) (ja) Japan-Manchukuo Protocol (1932) Tanggu Truce
Tanggu Truce
(1933) India-Japan Agreement of 1934 Japan-Manchukuo-Soviet Protocol for Cession of North Manchuria Railway (1935) (ja) He–Umezu Agreement (1935) Chin-Doihara Agreement (1935) Canada-Japan New Trade Agreement (1935) Japan-Netherlands Shipping Agreement (1936) Anti-Comintern Pact
Anti-Comintern Pact
(1936) Hart-Ishizawa Agreement (1937) India-Japan Agreement of 1937 Van Mook-Kotani Agreement (1938) Tripartite Pact
Tripartite Pact
(1940) Japan-China Basic Relations Treaty (1940) Japan-Manchukuo-China Joint Declaration (1940) (ja) Soviet–Japanese Neutrality Pact
Soviet–Japanese Neutrality Pact
(1941) Japan-Thailand Attack/Defence Alliance Treaty (1941) (ja) Japanese Instrument of Surrender
Japanese Instrument of Surrender

During Cold War (1945–89)

Security Treaty between the United States
United States
and Japan (1951) Treaty of San Francisco
Treaty of San Francisco
(1951) Sino-Japanese Peace Treaty (1952) Treaty of Peace between Japan and India (1952) Treaty of Peace between Japan and Burma (1954) Japan–Philippines Reparations Agreement (1956) Soviet–Japanese Joint Declaration of 1956 Treaty of Peace between Japan and Indonesia (1958) Japan–South Vietnam Reparations Agreement (1959) Japan–US Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security (1960) Tokyo Convention (1963) Japan–South Korea Treaty (1965) Ogasawara Reversion Agreement (1968) Okinawa Reversion Agreement (1971) Japan–China Joint Communiqué (1972) Japan–North Vietnam Agreement (1973) Japan–China Trade Agreement (1974) Basic Treaty between Japan and Australia (1976) Sino–Japanese Peace and Friendship Treaty (1978)

v t e

dynasty of Korea

List of monarchs House of Yi


Tsushima expedition Japanese invasions of Korea (1592–98) Manchu invasions of Korea (First, Second) Treaty of Ganghwa Imo Incident Gapsin Coup Donghak Peasant Revolution Gabo Reform Eulmi Incident Korean Empire


Political factions in Joseon
Dynasty Korean literati purges


State Council of Joseon Six Ministries of Joseon Three offices of Joseon Border Defense Council of Joseon Secret royal inspector


Neo-Confucianism yangban seonbi chungin sangmin cheonmin kisaeng


Education in the Joseon
Dynasty Five Grand Palaces Hanbok Hangul Buncheong
ware Joseon
white porcelain Korean tea ceremony Korean garden Sungkyunkwan Styles and titles

Cultural heritages

Changdeokgung Jongmyo Shrine Namhansanseong Royal Tombs of the Joseon
Dynasty Villages of Hahoe and Yangdong Annals of the Joseon
Dynasty Hunminjeongeum Ilseongnok Nanjung Ilgi Seungjeongwon ilgi Uigwe

See also

Navy Joseon
missions to Imperial China Joseon