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1. 2월 13일

13th. (25th of 12th Moon). Wednesday. Windy and very cold.Samwha
The last two weeks have been, on the whole, as cold as one may desire. The 14th and the 15th as well as yesterday and today―the coldest we have had. A big snow―over a foot―on the 20th inst.
Wandering notes:
There are four "Chusas" in the Kamni Yamen where two would be one too many. One of them, a Min Chun Sik, has no fitness whatsoever for the position unless it be his clan name―Min―which the Korean Government seems to regard as the eternal fitness for all official appointments. Like most Mins, he is arrogant and corrupt. In spite of his utter uselessness, all the Kamnis have tolerated him largely out of consideration for his aged mother. I hate the very sight of this wretch. A month or so ago, he asked for a leave to go to Pyong Yang―which I was too glad to give, simply to get rid of his abominable presence, if for a few weeks. While he was in Pyong Yang, Min had the audacity to forge a telegram, in my name, for extorting some money from certain villagers in the district of Ryong Chun (龍川) . When this came to light, by pure accident, I had to wire him at once to return. For over ten days not a word of answer. Only when he heard of my intention to report his conduct to the Foreign Minister that he come back, in tears, he begged me to forgive him and drop the matter. But for my pity for his mother, I would have reported the whole matter to the Foreign Office without mincing it. Yet my heart got the better of my head and I sent to the Foreign Minister only a modified statement of Min's offenses.
This Min is a most bare-faced, hardened sinner I have ever seen. He glories in his wickedness and thinks it the height of manliness to be destitute of the sense of shame.
Yi Yong Yung, the Director of the Telegraph Office of the port, is a lively little fellow as vicious and hardy as a Korean pony. He is quick and sharp, thoroughly selfish and highly unscrupulous. He stole about400.00 which the magistrate of Yong Kang had sent to the Telegraph Office to be forwarded to Seoul. Yet in Korea a man of this type thrives.
The variety of money used here with shades in the scale of exchange is quite bewildering. (1) The Korean cash. (2) Korean nickels. (3) Korean copper cents. (4) The Japanese silver dollar (say―650 cash) . (5) The Japanese chopped silver (say―625 cash) (6) The Japanese half-dollar pieces, two of which don't make up the value of a whole dollar, thanks to the trickery of the Japanese merchants. (7) The Japanese bank notes.
A few weeks ago my septuagenarian friend celebrated the marriage of his grandson, now 13 years old. The bride is 17. This is the universal custom in the north and west Korea. Only the poor people marry girls younger than they. I saw in Wonsan a little bit of a fellow only 12 years old whose wife was 19.

2. 2월 14일

14th. Thursday. Lovely.
This being the anniversary of my birthday, friends from Chinnampo came to see me. Very kind of them, though I attach no importance to such an unimportant event. In fact I have not, so far, discovered any shadow of a simple reason for being grateful for my birth. Among the guests, were 金永澯, the Post Master, 李鍾瀅, the Director of the Telegraph Office, 金敎行 and 李鍾振, the chusas of Kamni Yamen and H.S. Ah, pleasure sweet as sin―a stolen fruit!
When I begged my Darling to stay in Seoul during the Winter with my parents I was actuated by the purest motives of filial piety. Whoever thought that this self denying-act of mine should have been the principal cause of much physical discomforts, more mental disquietude and even of sin? My wife is my guardian Angel and she alone can keep me from the slavery of that absorbing and overpowering passion of mine with which I have such an unequal struggle and against which reason and religion are practically helpless.
Spent the day pleasantly by playing the game of Yut or 윳.
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페이지 최종 수정일: 2004년 1월 1일