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Updated June 9, 2019

Family name origins & meanings

  • Korean : variant of Myŏng. In 1363, Myŏn Ok-jin established the Ha (Summer) Kingdom between Korea’s Koryŏ Kingdom and China’s Yuan Kingdom and declared himself emperor. This was a time of shifting political alliances between Korea and China, and several such small kingdoms appeared on the borderlands between the two nations. Myŏng Ok-jin died in 1366 and his son, Myŏng Sŏng, ascended the throne of the Ha Kingdom. At this time, however, China’s Yuan nation was falling and the new Ming Dynasty seized the Ha kingdom’s territory. Myŏng Sŏng returned to Koryŏ and was given the right by the Koryŏ king to live in Songdo, Korea. Later, when the Koryŏ kingdom fell to the Chosŏn kingdom, Myŏng Sŭng associated with the Yi Dynasty’s founding king, Yi Sŏng-gye. Most members of the present-day Myŏng family live in North Korea’s P’yŏnan North Province.

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