[KS] Tokto

McCann, David dmccann at fas.harvard.edu
Thu Oct 11 14:44:39 EDT 2012

Saa.  That proves it!  But then if we go to <take> as <dake> meaning 'only,' which would be <take> in word-initial position, then equal linguistic claim is established, Korean and Japanese.

So back to Square One, namely--so to speak-- that lonely, non-bamboo-istic set of rocks out there in the waters.


On Oct 11, 2012, at 10:24 AM, King, Ross wrote:

It is indeed a 'Lone Island', but etymologically the "tok" is a native Korean dialect version of the word for 'rock' (tol)--the "tok" shape shows up in various Korean dialects.
So originally this was almost certainly just "toksŏm" "Rock Island" (which it also is), subsequently hanja-ified by translating sŏm to Sino-Korean TO and leaving "tok" as a phonogram with a hanja with suitable semantics.

Ross King

While they are at it, let's hope somebody thinks to point out the difference in the names for the place.  Korean Tokdo means "Lone Island," which it is.  Takeshima, which means "bamboo Island," and which it is not, would suggest no one had been there from Japan, or knew  what it looked like.

David McCann

Sent from my iPad

On Oct 10, 2012, at 8:42 PM, "gkl1 at columbia.edu<mailto:gkl1 at columbia.edu>" <gkl1 at columbia.edu<mailto:gkl1 at columbia.edu>> wrote:

Thanks to Yoo Kwang-On, we get frequent updates on the Tokto
situation. Seoul keeps hitting the issue, and in P'yongyang they've
also been pushing in their own famous style. A week or so ago the NY
Times (finally!) had a piece on the island squabble, but it wasn't
anywhere near as good as the one the Washington Post put out a day or
two ago.

Now wouldn't it be great for morale on both sides of the DMZ and/or
the East China Sea and for all us in the Korean and China fields if
they joined in giving a unified, world-wide plea on the issue? The
basic facts are held in common.

Today, the Republic of China (Taiwan) bought a full page add in the
New York Times on the Diaoyu problem, laying out a well produced and
documented statement with an excellent, convincing mix of historical
and legal facts. On Sept. 28, the PRC had bought a TWO-page add in the
Times with pretty much the same facts but without the sophistication
and clarity of the Taiwan presentation, which did not mention that
both Taiwan and the PRC claimed the island. It's great, because
whatever happens in the future between the two Chinese republics, the
Daiyu islands will end up in China.

Now, if the ROK and the DPRK could put together on Tokto a cogent
statement with the presentational excellence of the Taiwan display,
and  buy a Times page or two, wouldn't that wake up a lot of folks in
the Korean peninsula and around the world! The fact is, the USA was
involved in both the Diaoyutai and Tokto issues after the Pacific War
and are not without some responsibility for the tragic mis-allocation
of these islands. Americans in general should be made more aware of
the facts. And yet, the US government keeps hiding behind a so-called
neutral stance.

Gari Ledyard

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