S. Korean royal books returned from France go on display

11:37, July 20, 2011      

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South Korea's ancient royal books, taken by French troops nearly 150 years ago, were put on display at a national museum in Seoul on Tuesday for the first time since their return to home.

The Oegyujanggak books, which detail protocol for royal funerals, weddings and other ceremonies during the Joseon Dynasty, were looted by French troops in 1866 when they raided a royal library on Ganghwa Island off South Korea's west coast.

The National Museum of Korea organized a special exhibition to present the country's retrieved treasures to the public. A total of 165 items of relics, including 71 books out of the 297-volume Oegyujanggak collection, are being displayed during the exhibition that runs from July 19 to Sept. 18.

The return of the Oegyujanggak books came after South Korean President Lee Myung-bak and his French counterpart, Nicolas Sarkozy, agreed in November last year to transfer the books to South Korea on a renewable lease.

Source: Xinhua
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