S-Space Kyujanggak Institute for Korean Studies (규장각한국학연구원) Korean Culture (한국문화) Korean Culture (한국문화) vol.81-84(2018)
16세기 田稅 財政 운영의 재검토 : Reconsideration of the 16th century Jeonse(田稅) Jaejeong(財政) Operation
- Issue Date
- 서울대학교 규장각한국학연구원
- 한국문화, Vol.82, pp. 227-262
- 전세 ; 공안 ; 횡간 ; 전세 하향고정화 ; 재정 구조 ; Jeonse ; 田稅 ; Gongan ; 貢案 ; Hwenggan ; 橫看 ; downward fixation of Jeonse ; financial structure
- In the recent research on history, financial operation during the 16th century of Joseon Dynasty is described very negatively. One of the point significantly mentioned in such financial operation is downward fixation of Jeonse and decrease of Migok(米穀) income accordingly. During the 15th century, overall government system was established and the foundation of the nation was strengthened through abundant finance securement. On the contrary, in the 16th century, Younbun(年分) of Jeonse was gradually fixed downward(下下), and Jeonse income rapidly decreased accordingly, and national financial operation became poor.
However, such explanation cannot fully explain downward fixation of Jeonse in the 16th century. Above all, such questions as, was Jeonse of the 16 century actually fixed downward? If so, how much did Jeonse receipt amount decrease? How did such decrease of Jeonse receipt influence the central financial operation? What was the cause of such change?, etc. were not clearly determined or no solution based on causal relation was suggested.
According to the researchers review, national Jeonse income around the 15th century Gongbeob was 44~48Manseok(萬石), almost 50Manseok(萬石). During the 16th century, Jeonse receipt amount decreased to around 27Manseok(萬石). Receipt amount per 1 Gyeol also decreased from 6~7Du(斗) during mid and late 15th century to 4Du(斗) in thee 16th century. Such decrease of Jeonseo receipt amount was due to the national financial structure of mid 15th century. Financial structure based on Gongan(貢案)-Hwenggan(橫看), established during King Sejos reign, it was regulated to reduce expense rationally, also, pay(納入) tax to the central government with only necessary amount. Accordingly, tax pay to the central government was also minimized, and the amount of central tax payment was regulated based on the assumption of 4Du receipt per 1Gyeol, the poorest tax receipt condition.
Establishment of such financial structure noticeably reduced the necessity to maintain receipt per 1Gyeol over 4Du(斗). Accordingly, Jeonse receipt in each province was fixed to 4Du(斗) per 1Gyeol. However, since the financial source paid to the central government through 4Du(斗) receipt per 1Gyeol was favorable, therefore, downward fixation of Jeonse in the 16th century did not directly influence the central finance.
Nevertheless, downward fixation of Jeonse in the 16th century reduced the preliminary finances, that is, the reduction of Bichukgok. In case of Bichukgok of Seoul as an example, central Bichukgok, which had exceeded 1 million Seok during King Taejong, decresed to 50Manseok(萬石) during King Sejong. Later, during the late 15th century, it increased to around 1 million Seok(萬石), then decreased to 50~70Manseok(萬石) in the 16th century. National Bichukgok during King Myungjongs reign in mid 16 rapidly decreased to 30Manseok(萬石), which value seemed to have been maintained until the outbreak of Japanese invasions of Korea.
This way, downward fixation of Jeonse in the 16th century was derived out of the financial structure of the late 15th century, which did not directly influence central finance operation. However, national Bichukgok(備蓄穀) decreased to 30Manseok. Considering such result, the researcher thinks that current research on history, which describes financial operation of the 16th century negatively, should be reconsidered.