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◈ 윤치호일기 (1903년) ◈

◇ 6월 ◇

해설목차  1권  2권  3권 윤치호

1. 6월 19일

1
19th.(24th of 5th Moon). Seoul, Jun-Dong.
 
2
Well, just a month since I came to Seoul―though out of this 12 days(June 1―12) were spent in a trip to and from wansan to bring my Darling here.
3
I am miserable in my father's house. My father has a set of ideas of comfort and of domestic economy so different from mine. In the first place he has three wives in the house. Nothing but the wonderful sagacity, patience and ability of my dear mother keeps this source of family disorder in check. Rooms, rooms, rooms―the house full of rooms―but all so located and used that I can hardly find a room where I may enjoy quiet and privacy. My Darling and children and I have to sleep in one room, two Kan by one and a half Kan. The house is practically surrounded by ( ) rather unsmellable一cesspools ( ) .
4
The air heavily charged with the malodorus vapor from the gutters, W.Cꡑs, sinks, etc. make me wish I could sincerely agree with my countrymen that filthy surroundings are not only the result but also the cause of wealth and happiness. The well, located in our "sa-rang" yard, gives a cool supply of brackish water which must hold in solution the sewer product of every description from the neighboring ditches, etc. When I wash in the water soap curdles into large flakes. To say that such air and such water are injurious to health is a nonsense―nay, an insult to a Korean; for has not he lived and moved in this very air, to say nothing about drinking the water unboiled―for the last fifty or seventy tears unhurt? Why, his father and grandfather, all did the same. What was good for them must be good for us. So I dare not suggest to father that the air and water of Jun-Dong are unfit for decent folks.
5
There is nice furniture in the house―beds, chairs, tables, a fine cooking range, with utensils, but they are rusting away in storerooms. Five girl servants and five men―enough to keep a palace clean―but dirt and dust rule everywhere except the rooms actually occupied. A Korean man is an incarnation of selfishness. Provided he is comfortable, he does not care a rap for the comfort or discomfort of even his wives and children. In fact wives are nothing but slaves whose whole duty is to minister unto their lord and master. My mother works cheerfully from the earliest to the latest in the day. As each person must have a separate table of food and as there is no common hour or place for meals, my mother and the maids are busy all the hours in preparing food and setting out tables for the numerous mouths. A fixed hours, a common table and a common dinning room will save much of the worry and trouble but father will not listen to such an outrageous scheme.
6
Nothing left in a Korean but fear. I must not ride the electric car, because the Emperor is in quarrel with the Electric Company. I must not go to Pai-Chai School, because the Emperor hates that institution. I must not go to the Japanese settlement, because the Emperor has detectives guarding the approaches of the settlement. I must not make public speeches, because the Emperor hates all sorts of public talks. I must not go to any resorts of recreation or amusement because the Emperor may hear of it.
7
I have to stay in my father's house in spite of all this inconvenience, because I dare not occupy my own house outside of the South Gate. The Emperor has been trying to rob me of it and I have to keep a foreigner in it to keep off the grabber.
8
Order, system, and neatness are considered in Korea as signs of poverty, littleness of minds and of vulgarity. Hence, a gentleman and scholar must be slovenly, careless and dirty in person and ( ) . Bedbugs(빈) are making nights hideous in every house in Seoul. Yet instead of trying to get rid of them by cleanliness, the people surrender themselves to the vermins with a sublime resignation, believing that it is fate (運數) ! Can a people go lower than this in degradation?
9
There are only three classes of people in Seoul:
10
1st the successful cheaters, 2nd the would-be cheaters, 3rd the cheater. Dishonesty pays, and pays so well and so long, that it is almost impossible to convince a Korean there is such a thing as honesty in this world at all.
11
I have been in the city some time, but no Korean who is in the government or who hunts after an office (and who does not?) comes to see me. Many prominent men are significantly absent when I call on them. That is, I am shunned as the ex-president of the Independence Club.
12
In Seoul, especially in the West and South sections of the city, no Korean dares own a good site or house. The Emperor simply orders the owner to get out and give the site or house to a foreign employee, as in the case of my father's house on Namsan, or to a favorite as in the case of Mr. Yi Yun Yong's house in Chung-Dong.
13
A Korean said to Dr. Underwood some time ago, "Our hearts are frostbitten." That is exactly it. We are like plants smitten by frost. Five centuries of oppression have reached the depth of winter. When will the spring come?
14
The Korean way of housekeeping drives me crazy.
15
Why not a large commodious kitchen with shelves, etc. for utensils and conveniences for cooking, preparing and storing things, instead of a small and ill-kept kitchen with no arrangement for putting away utensils etc. in order? As it is, the whole "Am-Chai," or woman's quarters are a kitchen with all its necessary and unnecessary smells and confusion and noise. Why not a few well paid and well instructed servants instead of ten or a dozen ill-clad beggars of servants who must be kept at their work only by perpetual scolding? It spoils my appetite completely when, at every meantime, I hear the mistress of the house scold the servants for a hundred and one mistakes and faults. As there is no division of labor every servant is supposed to do everything though in fact nobody does his or her's well. The noise and quarreling among the servants are a source of vexation to me. Why not a house with rooms so arranged as to give a room or two or three to each member of the family with a common dining room, a common wash room, etc. while the rest of the compound is given up to trees, flowers and gardens? But a Korean has a perfect mania for filling his compound, no matter how large it may be, with little useless boxlike houses, with no breathing space anywhere. No amount of argument seems to enable him to see the advantage of the more reasonable method of housekeeping.
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◈ 윤치호일기 (1903년) ◈

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