Page:Every-day life in Korea (1898).djvu/21

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WHERE IS KOREA?

country; viz., from abovit 34 to 43 degrees north latitude. But as the far north of the country is prodigiously mountainous and but little populated, it is well to associate the relative position of Korea on the map with the Ohio valley, plus Tennessee. Seoul (pronounced by many Sahoul), the capital, in every way the most important city of the peninsula, containing perhaps 200,000 people, is in the same latitude, as Mr. Gilmore suggests, as the city of Richmond, Virginia. So it will be seen that Korea and the tropics are a long way apart, if tigers do exist there. In the absence of statistical bureaus, such as are found in western lands, it is impossible to lay claim to scientific accuracy in speaking of the size of the country; but Korea with its islands has probably an area of ninety thousand square miles, equivalent to that of the states of New York and Pennsylvania combined.

Probably twelve million people are scattered through the valleys of the Hermit Kingdom.

The visitor to Korea journeys, as does almost everyone, by a Japanese steamer of the Nippon Yusen Kaishia line, from Nagasaki, Japan, which first touches at the southeastern port of Korea — Fusan. Thence to Chemulpo, the seaport of Seoul, half-way up the western coast, the steamer threads its way through a profusion of islands, washed by dangerous currents. Off the south and west coasts of Korea lie thousands of islands, whose waters teem with fish. Indeed, one of the