The Minneapolis Institute of Arts - Museum Home Page
The Art of Asia
History & Maps
Explore the Collection
Guide To Korean Historical Periods

Neolithic and Bronze Age

Korea Timeline Chosun Dynasty Koryo Dynasty United Silla Three Kingdoms

From This Period

Jar with Horn Shaped Handles

Neolithic and Bronze Age Korea

7000 - 1st century B.C.

Archaeologists believe the Koreans descended from the nomadic Mongolian tribes that lived in North and Central Asia. Early Korean pottery from the third millennium B.C. closely resembles Neolithic ceramics from Manchuria. Early bronze technology, too, was probably first introduced to Korea by Manchurians between 2000 and 1000 B.C. Shamanism, a pervasive religion throughout much of Korea's history, probably also began at this time. After the Han emperor Wu Di established a colony at Lolang (near present-day P'yongyang) in A.D. 108, Korea felt the impact of China more strongly. With the introduction of iron technology, the potter's wheel, Chinese writing, Buddhism, Confucianism, Chinese culture became firmly embedded on the Korean peninsula.