무덕관 · 武德館
Mudeok-kwan is one of the nine schools of martial arts that contributed
to the foundation of Taekwondo, opened by
황기 (Hwang Ki) in 1945 CE.
After travelling, and training with a number of different instructors, Hwang Ki
developed a martial art which he initially named 화수도 花手道 (Hwasudo). This was the name of the art when he
opened Mudeok-kwan on 9 November 1945 CE. Later, though, in order to reflect
changes in the art, he renamed it to 당수도 唐手道
(Dangsudo, Tangsudo), and later again, on 30 June 1960 CE, to
수박도 手搏道 (Subakdo).
In 1961, the government of Korea endeavoured to unify the numerous martial arts
schools within the country as part of one association, and with one name (initially
Taesudo and later Taekwondo), with the aim of allowing all to
develop rapidly. Hwang Ki did not like this arrangement, and remained independent.
However, in 1965, three of his higher-grade students, 김영택
(Kim Yeong-taek), 홍종수 (Hong Jong-su), and
이강익 (Yi Gang-ik), led a significant number of practitioners
from Mudeok-kwan to join Taekwondo.
The school was divided. Mudeok-kwan led by Hwang Ki continued
to flourish independently, and exists today as an international martial arts association,
which officially practises Mudeok-kwan Subakdo (and so is officialy separate
from Taekwondo). Mudeok-kwan led by Yi Gang-ik now only
exists in the form of a society, which officially supports the style of Taekwondo
taught by 국기원 國技院 (Gukgiwon,
무 武 (mu) refers to martial
arts, 덕 德 (deok) refers to
morality, and 관 館 (gwan,
kwan) refers to a training hall, so 무덕관
武德館 (mudeokgwan) means 'Morality Martial Arts School'.
Hwang Ki initially named his martial art Hwasudo.
화 花 (hwa) means 'flower' or 'petal',
수 手 (su) means 'hand', and
도 道 (do) means 'way'. Thus
화수도 花手道 (hwasudo) means 'The
Way of the Flowering Hand'. Also, 화 花
(hwa) is probably a reference to the 화랑
花郞 (hwarang), an elite class of warriors from the Silla
당수도 唐手道 (Dangsudo, Tangsudo)
is simply the Korean pronunciation of the Japanese word Karate-dō.
수박도 手搏道 (Subakdo) is a reference
to the ancient martial art 수박 手搏 (Subak),
which was practised during the time of the Three Kingdoms.
The name 'Mudeok-kwan' follows the traditional naming scheme for martial
arts styles. This would therefore mean that the style of martial arts practised
at Mudeok-kwan led by Yi Gang-ik is called 'Mudeok-kwan Taekwondo'.
(The martial arts practised at Mudeok-kwan led by Hwang Ki is
called 'Mudeok-kwan Hwasudo', 'Mudeok-kwan Tangsudo', or 'Mudeok-kwan
Subakdo', depending on the time that is referred to.)