RASKB Online Library

 

An Online Library

There are a number of online sites providing free access to files in varying formats of  old books about Korea

Myongji - LG Korean Studies Library
This is a database containing "full-text images of 638 old books related to Korea and its neighbors in western languages along with their indexes, tables of contents in Korean and full bibliographic information. Users can also access to the digital database with indexed terms retrieval system. Now the library on-line system provides full-text images of about 30% of the major collection. In addition, mobile web service is possible for some full-text images of about 70 illustrations and 120 photographs."
The complete list, titles in alphabetical order for search by category; books published in the US; books published in the UK. etc etc

Project Gutenberg
This site only offers a handful of books related to Korea

Internet Archive
Most of the titles below are from this site. To start a new search for other online texts, go to the Internet archive then click on "Texts" at the top of the page. Enter a search term (eg Korea). Some books are available as PDF images of the original, all can be read in a streaming form, raw OCR files of all can be downloaded.

The University of Oregon Digital Library
The Library offers titles of books and articles in a variety of formats, requiring other readers, mostly the Microsoft Reader. It seems impossible to view a straight list of what is available, you have to use Search functions.

The Hathi Trust
A number of texts about Korea can be viewed (not downloaded) through this site, while many others can be searched but not viewed.

Google books
An increasing number of older books that are out of copyright are available to read for free through Play Google.

Old books about Korea freely available on the Internet

The list below is in alphabetical order of the author's family name. Indented titles are from sites other than the Internet Archive.

Horace Newton Allen, Things Korean (1908)
     Horace N. Allen,  A Chronological Index; Some of the Chief Events in the Foreign Intercourse of Korea from the Beginning of the Christian Era to the Twentieth Century. Seoul: N.n., 1901.
     Horace Newton Allen, Korean tales.  (1889)
Henry Gerhard Appenzeller, The Korea Mission of the Methodist Episcopal Church (1905)
Annie Laurie Adams Baird, Daybreak in Korea : a tale of transformation in the Far East (1909)
Frederick Henry Balfour, Leaves from my Chinese Scrapbook (1887)
William Richard Carles, Life in Corea (1888)
     Carles, W.R. Life in Corea. New York: Macmillan, 1888.
     Carles, W.R. Life in Corea. New York: MacMillan,1894.
Cavendish, A. E. J. (Alfred Edward John); Goold-Adams, H. E. (Henry Edward Pane), Korea and the sacred White Mountain : being a brief account of a journey in Korea in 1891 (1894)
Charles Allen Clark, First Fruits in Korea (1921)
James Hyde Clark, The Story of China and Japan . . . . together with a sketch of Corea, and the Coreans (1894)
Everard Cotes, Signs and Portents in the Far East (1907)
Constance J. D. Coulson, Korea (1910)
      O. N. Denny, China and Korea. Shanghai: Kelly & Walsh, 1888
M. Eissler, My Voyage in Korea (1918)
James Scarth Gale, A Korean-English Dictionary (1898)
James Scarth Gale, Korean Sketches (1898) 
James Scarth Gale, The Vanguard, a Tale of Korea (1904)
     James S. Gale, The Vanguard: A Tale of Korea. New York: Fleming H. Revell, 1904.
James Scarth Gale, Korea in Transition (1909)
James Scarth Gale, Im Bang & Yi Ryuk,  Korean Folk Tales (1913)
     James Scarth Gale: Im Bang and Yi Ryuk. Korean Folk Tales: Imps, Ghosts, and Fairies. Trans. by James S. Gale. London: Dent, 1913.
     James S. Gale  The Cloud Dream of the Nine, a 17th-century novel by Kim Man-jung (1922)
Daniel L. Gifford, Everyday Life in Korea (1898)
George W. Gilmore, Corea of Today (1894)
     George William Gilmore, Korea from its capital: with a chapter on missions. (1892)
C. Gottsche, Land und Leute in Korea (1886)
William Elliot Griffis, Corea, the Hermit Nation (4th edition, 1894) (See also 1st edition with PDF file)
William Elliot Griffis, A modern Pioneer in Korea: The life-story of Henry G. Appenzeller (1912)
     Griffis, William Elliot. Corea: the Hermit Nation. New York: Scribner's, 1894.
     Griffis, William Elliot. A Modern Pioneer in Korea: the Life Story of Henry G. Appenzeller. New York: Fleming H. Revell, 1912
Basil Hall, Voyage to Loo-Choo . . . (1826)
Basil Hall  Account of a Voyage of Discovery to the West Coast of Corea, and the Great Loo-Choo Island (1818) (Project Gutenberg)
Hendrik Hamel  Verhaal van het vergaan van het jacht de Sperwer En van het wedervaren der schipbreukelingen op het eiland Quelpaert en het vasteland van Korea (1653-1666) met eene beschrijving van dat rijk, (1920 edition)
Angus Hamilton, Korea (1904)
Angus Hamilton, Korea: its history, its people, and its commerce (1910)
     Hodge, John W. Corean Words and Phrase, Being a Handbook and Pocket Dictionary for Visitors to Corea and New Arrivals in the Country. Seoul: The Seoul Press --- Hodge & Co.,1902.
Homer B. Hulbert, The Passing of Korea (1906)
Homer B. Hulbert, The History of Korea, Volume 1 (1905)
Homer B. Hulbert, The History of Korea, Volume 2 (1905)
      H.B. Hulbert, The History of Korea [vol. 1]. Seoul: The Methodist Publishing House, 1905.
      H.B. Hulbert,  The History of Korea [vol. 2]. Seoul: The Methodist Publishing House, 1905.
      H.B. Hulbert,  Passing of Korea. New York: Doubleday, 1906.
Homer B. Hulbert (editor) The Korea Review, Volume 1 (1901)
Homer B. Hulbert (editor) The Korea Review, Volume 2 (1902)
Homer B. Hulbert (editor) The Korea Review, Volume 3 (1903)
Homer B. Hulbert (editor) The Korea Review, Volume 4 (1904) 
Homer B. Hulbert (editor) The Korea Review, Volume 5 (1905) 
George Heber Jones, Korea, the land, people, and customs (1907)
George Heber Jones, The Bible in Korea (1916)
Emily Georgiana Kemp,  The Face of Manchuria, Korea and Russian Turkestan (1911)
     Carlton Waldo Kendall, The truth about Korea (1919)
F. H. King. Farmers of Forty Centuries; Or, Permanent Agriculture in China, Korea, and Japan (1911) (Project Gutenberg)
     Kiriyama Sainosuke. Chosen of To-day: Illustrated. Keijo: Chikasawa Printing House, 1929
George Trumbull Ladd, In Korea with Marquis Ito (1908)
Arnold Henry Savage Landor, Corea, or Cho-sen: the land of the morning calm (1895)
A. Henry Savage Landor Corea or Cho-sen (1895) - An HTML version with fully scanned pictures is available here. (Project Gutenberg)
     Joseph H. Longford, The Story of Korea. London: T. Fisher Unwin, 1911.
     Percival Lowell, Choson: The Land of the Morning Calm. Boston: Tickner, 1886.
     Percival Lowell,  Chosön, the land of the morning calm; a sketch of Korea by  1855-1916. Published 1888
Elizabeth A. McCully, A Corn of Wheat: The Life of W. J. McKenzie of Korea (1904)
Fred Arthur McKenzie, The colonial policy of Japan in Korea (1906)
F. A. McKenzie, The Tragedy of Korea (1908)
Fred Arthur McKenzie, Korea’s Fight for Freedom (1920)
F. A. McKenzie  Korea’s Fight for Freedom  (1920) (on another site a PDF file) (Project Gutenberg)
Louise Jordan Miln, Quaint Korea (1895)
John M'Leod, Narrative of a voyage in His Majesty's late ship Alceste . . . (1817)
William Arthur Noble, Ewa, A Tale of Korea (1906)
      W. Arthur Noble,  Ewa: a Tale of Korea. New York: Eaton & Mains, 1906.
Henry Davenport Northrop & John Russell Young, The Flowery Kingdom and the Land of the Mikado, or China Japan and Corea . . (1894)
      Ernest Oppert,  A Forbidden Land ; Voyages to the Corea. London: Sampson, Low, Marston, Searle, and Rivington, 1880.
      Pictorial Chosen and Manchuria. Seoul: The Bank of Chosen, 1919.
Henry Lee Mitchell Pike, Our Little Korean Cousin  (1905) - Online version complete with the original pictures here. (Project Gutenberg)
Arthur Loton Ridger, A Wanderer's Trail: being a faithful record of travels in many lands (1914) esp. chapters 12-14 about Korea.
William Woodville Rockhill, Korea's Intercourse with China (1905)
John Ross, Corean Primer (1877)
James Scott, A Korean Manual or Phrase Book (1893)
Frederick Starr, Korean Buddhism (1918)  
Anna M. Stoddart, The life of Isabella Bishop (1906)
Mark Napier Trollope, The Church in Corea (1915)
Horace Grant Underwood, The Call of Korea: political, social, religious (1908)
Horace Grant Underwood. An Introduction to the Korean Spoken Language. (1914)
     Horace Horton Underwood, Modern education in Korea
Lillias H. Underwood, With Tommy Tompkins in Korea (1905)
Lillias H. Underwood, Fifteen Years among the Topknots or Life in Korea (1904)
      L. H. Underwood,  Fifteen Years Among the Top-Knots or Life in Korea. Boston: American Tract Society, 1904.
Lillias H. Underwood, Underwood of Korea (1918) 
Peter Vay, Empires and Emperors of Russia, China, Korea and Japan (1906)
      Wagner, Ellasue Canter. Kim Su Bang and Other Stories of Korea. Nashville: M.E. Church, South, 1909.
Henry James Whigham, Manchuria and Korea (1904) PDF download
Francis Edward Younghusband, The heart of a continent : a narrative of travels in Manchuria, across the Gobi Desert, through the Himalayas, the Pamirs, and Chitral, 1884-1894 (1896)

Internet Archive Books about Korea in French

Charles Dallet, Histoire de l'Eglise de Coree (1874)
Dictionnaire coreen-francais (1880)
(Félix Clair Ridel) : Grammaire coréenne: précédée d'un introduction sur le caractère de la langue coréenne, sa comparaison avec le chinois, etc., suivie d'un appendice sur la division du temps, les poids et mesures, la boussole, la généalogie, avec un cours d'exercices gradués pour faciliter l'étude pratique de la langue. 1881.
R. Villetard de Laguérie,  La Coree, independante, russe, ou japonaise: ouvrage contenant cinquante illustrations d'apres des photographies 1898
Maurice Jametel,  La Corée avant les Traités: souvenirs de voyages. 1885
Georges Ducrocq, Pauvre et Douce Corée. 1904 5eme edition.
Camille Auguste Jean Sainson trad., Les Origines de la Corée: (extrait du Tong-kouo-thong-kienn), 1895
Fernand Scherzer trad, Journal d’une Mission en Coréé par Kuei-ling (ambassadeur de S.M. l’Empereur de la Chine, 1866)  1877
Maurice Courant, Bibliographie Coréenne Tableau Littéraire De La Coree Contenant la nomenclature des ouvrages publiés dans ce pays jusqu'en 1890 ainsi que la description et l'analyse détaillées des principaux d'entre ces ouvrages.
Arthur Piacentini, Mgr Ridel, évêque de Philippolis, vicaire apostolique de Corée : d'après sa correspondance. 1890.
Vie de Michel Alexandre Petitnicolas : prêtre de la Société des Missions-Étrangères décapité pour la foi en Corée le 12 mars 1866 . 1891
M. Le Colonel Chaille-Long-Bey, La Corée ou Tchösen (la terre du calme matinal) 1894.
Jean-Baptiste Du Halde S.J., (1674-1743), Description géographique, historique, chronologique, politique, et physique de l'empire de la Chine et de la Tartarie chinoise, enrichie des cartes générales et particulieres de ces pays, de la carte générale et des cartes particulieres du Thibet, & de la Corée; & ornée d'un grand nombre de figures & de vignettes gravées en tailledouce (revised edition 1736)   Volume 1Volume 2Volume 3; Volume 4 [observations geographiques + historiques etc sur la Corée à partir de page 529 – 560 du volume 4]
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Journal Articles from the University of Oregon Digital Library

Attack on the Top Knot. The Korean Repository, Vol. III (July, 1896), pp. 263-272.
Avison, O.R. Cholera in Seoul. The Korean Repository, Vol. II (September, 1895), pp 339-344.
Avison, O.R. Disease in Korea. The Korean Repository, Vol. IV (March, 1897), pp. 207-211
Boots, J.L. Korean Musical Instruments and An Introduction to Korean Music. Transactions of the Korea Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society, Vol. XXX, (1940), pp. 1-32.
Bowman, N.H. History of Korean Medicine. Transactions of the Korea Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society, Vol. VI, Part I (1915), pp. 1-34.
Gale, Jas. S. Korean Coolie. The Korean Repository, Vol.III (December, 1896), pp. 475-481.
Gale, Jas. S. Trip Across Northern Korea. The Korean Repository, Vol.IV (March,1897), pp. 81-89
Gale, Jas. S. Hanyang (Seoul). Transactions of the Korea Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society, Vol. II, Part II (1902), pp. 1-43.
Gale, Jas. S. "The Korean Alphabet". Transactions of the Korea Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society, Vol. IV, Part I (1912), pp. 13-61.
Gale, Jas. S. Selection and Divorce. Transactions of the Korea Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society, Vol. IV, Part III (1913), pp. 17-22.
Gale, Jas. S. Shipwreck (Korean) in 1636 A.D., Transactions of the Korea Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society, Vol. XV (1924), pp. 1-22.
Gifford, Daniel L. "Ancestral Worship as Practiced in Korea". The Korean Repository, Vol. I (June, 1892), pp. 169-176.
Goodrich, L. Carrington. Sino-Korean Relations at the End of the XIV Century. Transactions of the Korea Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society, Vol. XXX, (1940), pp. 33-46.
His Majesty, the King of Korea. The Korean Repository, Vol. III (November, 1896), pp. 424-431
Hulbert, Homer B. Korean Vocal Music. The Korean Repository, Vol. III (February, 1896), pp. 45-53.
Hulbert, H.B. The Geomancer. The Korean Repository, Vol.III (October, 1896), pp. 387-391.
Hulbert, H.B. Itu. The Korean Repository, Vol.V (February, 1898), pp.47-54.
Hulbert, Homer B. Japan in Korea. Journal of Race Development, Vol.10, No.3 (January, 1920), pp. 270-277.
Hunt, Charles. Some Pictures and Painters of Corea. Transactions of the Korea Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society, Vol. XIX (1930), pp. 1-34.
Jones, George Heber. The Japanese Invasion. The Korean Repository (January, 1892), pp. 10-16; (February, 1892), pp. 46-50: (April, 1892), pp. 116-121; (May, 1892), pp. 147-152; (June, 1892), pp. 182-188; (July, 1892), pp. 217-222; (October, 1892), pp. 308-311.
Jones, George Heber. Some Aspects of Reform in Korea. The Journal of Race Development, Vol. 1 (July, 1910), pp. 18-35.
Junkin, William M. Tong Hak. The Korean Repository, Vol. II (February, 1895), pp. 56-61.
Koons, E.W. Afforestation in Korea. Transactions of the Korea Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society, Vol. VI --- Part I (1915), pp. 35-42.
Korean Ginseng. The Korean Repository, Vol. V (May, 1898), pp. 161-170.
Ladd, George Trumbull "Economic and Social Change in Korea". The Journal of Race Development, Vol. 1 (July, 1910), pp. 248-253.
Landis, E.B. Geomancy in Korea. The Korean Repository, Vol.V (February, 1898), pp.41-46.
Lay, Arthur Hyde. "Marriage Customs of Korea". Transactions of the Korea Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society, Vol. IV, Part III (1913), pp. 1-15.
MacNair, Harley Farnsworth. Pilgrimage to the Diamond Mountains. China Journal of Science and Arts, Vol. 1, No. 6 (November, 1923), pp 573-579.
Miura, C. The Problem of Korean Assimilation. The Japan Magazine, Vol. XII, no.I-III ( July-August, 1921) pp. 130-134.
Moffett, S.A. Suggestions on Travelling in Korea. The Korean Repository (November, 1892), pp. 325-330.
Nocentini, Ludovico. "Names of the Sovereigns of the Old Corean States, and Chronological Table of the Present Dynasty". Journal of the China Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society, Vol. XXII, New Series (1887), pp. 90-99.
Paske, J. The Corean School System. East of Asia Magazine, Vol. II (1903), pp. 24-30.
Rufus, W. Carl. "The Celestial Planisphere of King Yi Tai-jo". Transactions of the Korea Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society, Vol. IV, Part III (1913), pp. 23-72.
Scherzer, F. "Corea". Journal of the North China Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society, Vol. XVIII, New Series (1883), pp. 25-36.
Seven Months Among the Tong Haks. The Korean Repository, Vol. II (June, 1895), pp. 201-208
Starr, Frederick. Korean Buddhism. The Journal of Race Development, Vol. 11, No. 1 (July, 1918), pp. 71-84.
Trumbull, George. The Development of Korea in Most Recent Times. The Journal of Race Development, Vol. 8, No.4 (April, 1918), pp. 431-438.
Underwood, Horace H. Occidental Literature on Korea. Transactions of the Korea Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society, Vol. XX (1931), pp. 1-186,i-xvi.
Van Buskirk, J.D. Some Common Korean Foods. Transactions of the Korea Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society, Vol. XIV (1923), pp. 1-8.
Wilkinson, W.H. Korean Chess. The Korean Repository, Vol. II (March,1895), pp. 88-95.
 
See also:
The Korean Repository Volume 1 (1892) from the Hathi Trust   
The Korean Repository Volume 3 (1896) from Internet Archive

In 1913, Sekino Tadashi began work on the first volume of the "Chosen koseki zufu" (朝鮮古蹟圖譜 조선고적도보 Joseon Gojeok Dobo)  series (Album of ancient sites and monuments of Joseon), fifteen magnificent volumes of photos and drawings of ancient Korean objects and sites published 1915-1935. This and other publications by him were the origin of the present list of Korean National Treasures. A complete set of images from every volume can be seen here (change the final number to view each volume 1 - 15) or complete PDF files of each volume are available, linked to the volume titles below:
Volume 1    Goguryeo etc 낙랑대방군· 고구려 樂浪帶方郡 ·高句麗
Volume 2   Goguryeo 고구려성지급고분 高句麗城址及古墳
Volume 3   Baekje etc. 백제,임나,옥저,예,고신라 百濟,任那,沃沮,濊·,古新羅
Volume 4   Unified Silla (Buddhist relics) 신라통일시대(불교유적) 新羅統一時代(佛敎遺蹟)
Volume 5   Unified Silla 신라통일시대(왕릉,불상,탑내발견품) 新羅統一時代(王陵,佛像,塔內發見品)
Volume 6   Goryeo 고려(성지,궁지,석탑,기타석조물) 高麗(城址,宮址,石塔,基他石造物)
Volume 7   Goryeo 고려(석탑,불상,능묘,석관,묘지,탑지) 高麗(石塔,佛像,陵墓,石棺,墓誌,塔誌)
Volume 8   Goryeo 고려(도자기) 高麗(陶磁器)
Volume 9   Goryeo 고려(분묘내발견공예품) 高麗(墳墓內發見工藝品)
Volume 10   Joseon (palaces) 조선시대(궁전건축) 朝鮮時代(宮殿建築)
Volume 11   Joseon (public buildings) 조선시대(성곽,학교,문묘,객사,사고,서원등건조물)朝鮮時代(城郭,學校,文廟,客舍,史庫,書院等建造物)
Volume 12   Joseon (Buddhist)  조선시대(불사건축기1) 朝鮮時代(佛寺建築基1)
Volume 13   Joseon (Buddhist) 조선시대(불사건축기2,탑파,묘탑,석비,교량) 朝鮮時代(佛寺建築基2,塔婆,墓塔,石碑,橋梁)
Volume 14   Joseon (paintings) 조선시대(회화) 朝鮮時代(繪畵)
Volume 15   Joseon (ceramics) 조선시대(도자기) 朝鮮時代(陶磁器)

Old accounts of Korea online in Brother Anthony's home page

In separate pages you will find commented links
1. To texts mentioning or describing Korea published in the 16th and 17th centuries.
2.  To texts mentioning or describing Korea published in the 18th and early 19th centuries.
3. To texts of later 19th- and early 20th-century accounts of Korea

An expanded page with the text of and the photos from Isabella Bird's Korea and her Neighbors (1898), with additional photos of Korea taken by her.
An expanded page with the text of and the illustrations from Constance Tayler's Koreans at Home (1904).

 

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Royal Asiatic Society Korea Branch
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왕립아세아학회한국지부
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