Daebak Episode 22: In Jwa’s Revolution Begins
The excitement really begins now as In-jwa escaped capture and King Gyeongjong died. First, it should be noted that when Gyeongjong died, Yeoninggun was accused by the Soron faction of poisoning his brother, the king. The official record does not provided a clear conclusion. It’s probable that Gyeongjong died of food poisoning from eating tainted shrimp. The shrimp had been transported 30 miles from the ocean to the palace in fairly hot weather and the shrimp were not keep cold and fresh. No ice was packed around the shrimp so by the time they reached the palace, they were really not fit to eat.
The Sorons refused to accept that Gyeonjong died from simple food poisoning, and even if they did accept it, they refused to tell anyone as keeping the murder rumor alive was one sure way of defeating Yeongjo. They couldn’t stop him from ascending the throne, but they could use the rumor against him in other ways. And that is exactly what they did.
As the Mu-shin revolt moved north towards Hanyang, the armies were clad in mourning clothing and carrying flags for Gyeongjong. They claimed they were revolting against the murderer of King Gyeongjong who usurped the throne.They roused the people by spreading the rumor far and wide. Some governors and military commanders along the way simply handed over the keys and supplies to the revolutionaries because either they were Sorons or they believed the rumor. Others tried to fight and were slaughtered. Once In-jwa’s army captured a city or garrison, he put one of his people in charge.
From Korea Review, Vol 3:
This conspiracy was headed by the son of the executed Kim Il-gyung, by Mok si-rung the brother of Mok Ho-ryung and by the sons and other relatives of the killed and banished leaders of the Soron party. A large force was collected in Kyung-sang Province and Yi In-jwa was Chong Heui-ryang [Jeong Hee-ryang] were put in command. The conspiracy honeycombed the whole country, for we are told that in Pyung-an Province Yi Sa-sung took charge of an insurrectionary force, while at the capital Kim Chung-Geri and Nam T’a-jung worked in its interests. It was agreed that on the twentieth of the third moon Seoul should be entered and that Prince Mil-wha be put on the throne.
Further south, Jeong Hee-ryung lead another army while Park Pil Mong lead a third. Unfortunately for Park, his army was defeated early in the Jeolla area where the local commanders and governor stopped them early. Jeong’s army too was eventually defeated and he was killed. In-jwa’s army marched further north, to nearly reach Hanyang before they were stopped. More on that later.
So, first in this episode, we have In-jwa recruit Prince Mil-wha. Now, how he was related to Yeongjo, I don’t know. I cannot find his lineage, but it has to back a couple of, or even several, generations to the kings’ prior to Sukjong.
A second note to be aware of is the introduction in this episode of Yeongjo’s son. This son is not Sado. Sado was Yeongjo’s second son. The son shown is Crown Prince Hyojang (효장세자, 1719–1728).
The child was born to Royal Noble Consort Jeong of the Lee clan as both of Yeongjo’s Queens remained childless. It’s fairly obvious that this young prince, in the episode, will be a victim of In-jwa’s Mu-shin Rebellion. So, we can expect him to die in the next episode. My suspicion is that Gyeongjong’s widowed queen, Queen Seonui, will play a part in the child’s death. She dies 2 years later in 1730.