Hansan Island

Hansan Island 閑山島, known to Koreans as "Hansando" or 한산도, is in South Gyeongsang Province across a relatively narrow strait from Chungmu on the Tongyeong Peninsula.

The area around the island was the site of a great battle during the Imjin War where Admiral Yi Sun-Sin decisively defeated the main Japanese war fleet led by Wakizaka Yasuharu. Following the battle, Admiral Yi moved his main naval base from Yosu to Hansan Island, as it was strategically advantageous for conducting surveillance and reconnaissance of the nearby Gyeonnaeryang Strait 見乃梁 , which was an inland route leading directly to the main Japanese base located at Busan.

After King Seonjo ordered Admiral Yi Sun-Sin's arrest, imprisonment, and torture Admiral Won-Kyun was assigned to lead the Korean navy. However, Won-Kyun attacked the Japanese base at Busan, ignoring the tides, and was forced to retreat owing to shelling from the shore. The Japanese navy pursued him relentlessly and sank all but thirteen of the Korean war-galleons in the process. Won-Kyun was killed during this disastrous retreat, and Hansan Island, and its evacuated naval base, was exposed to the Japanese forces, who eventually burned it down.


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