• Koguryo and Balhae
  • Susahn-ri Tomb
Eastern Wall of the Main Chamber - Women
TitleEastern Wall of the Main Chamber - Women
Eastern Wall of the Main Chamber - Women

This is a detailed view of the two women depicted at the end of the procession on the eastern wall of the main chamber in Susahn-ri Tomb. They can be seen following the procession with their hands placed together in a gesture of respect. The women are wearing hairstyles and clothing similar to the maids on the northern wall of the main chamber.
Both women have their hair tied up in buns and their attire consists of long Jeogoris (traditional Korean upper garment) and creased skirts. The basic attire for women during the Koguryo era consisted of a Jeogori (traditional Korean upper garment) and skirt. Not all women of the time wore skirts as some maids that required a certain amount of mobility wore pants instead. Koguryo era skirts featured crimped fabric similar to the modern tennis skirt. Although all Koguryo women wore skirts regardless of class, the differences in status can be verified through the different fabrics, patterns, and colors depicted in murals. Skirts from the period were relatively varied with hemlines that reached the shins, ankles, or feet.
The Jeogoris’ necklines, sleeves, and bottom hemlines feature Seons (accents on garments mimicking the black feathers on a crane’s neck or wingtips, influenced by Siberian shamanism). Seons were a common feature in garments worn by northern nomadic tribes. In addition to the decorative effect, the Seon also has a practical purpose of preventing wear. As the necklines, sleeves, and hemlines of garments are prone to wear, these robes were reinforced with different color fabric in each of these areas, thereby enhancing practicality and decoration. The front panels of Jeogoris (traditional Korean upper garment) were worn left to right in a style known as U-im (Korean style for wearing traditional Hanbok; literally "panel right"). Although the opposite Jwa-im (literally "panel left") style was traditionally worn in Koguryo, both styles gained wide acceptance after U-im was introduced in the region by the Han Chinese.