This study analyzes two related questions dealing with the early Korean state of Silla: What was the nature of councils of nobles in Silla? And how did these councils evolve as Silla adopted and adapted Chinese-style statecraft and bureaucratic systems? It separates Silla history into three periods: (1) 531 and before; (2) 531-647; and (3) 647-935. In the first period, nobles from regions the Silla capital, who were all “kings,” gathered to decide important matters. The rank-title taed？ng (grandee) emerged in the 520s or early 530s along with the expansion of Silla. In the second period, the Silla king instituted the position of sangdaed？ng (senior grandee) in 531 and entrusted him with the management of government affairs. Silla kings gradually organized Chinese-style regular offices and ministries to handle government affairs, which slowly decreased the need for councils of nobles. In the third period Silla kings instituted a Chinese-style board of grand councilors, an Administration Chamber, about 650. The senior grand councilor and this smaller assembly of high-ranking nobles, who were usually closely related to the royal family, dominated Silla government until the end of the dynasty.
Ⅱ. Review of Selected Literary Terms
Ⅲ. Period 1: Before 531, the Age of the Maripkan
Ⅳ. Period 2: 531-647, the Age of the Senior Grandee
Ⅴ. Period 3: 647-935, the Age of Selective Sinicization
Ⅵ. The Evolution of Councils of Nobles