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The [[Three Kingdoms of Korea|Three Kingdoms]] refer to [[Goguryeo]], [[Baekje]], and [[Silla]], although [[Buyeo (state)|Buyeo]] and the [[Gaya confederacy]] existed into 5th and 6th centuries respectively.
[[Image:Ddol-mangB.jpg|250px|right|thumb|Gold buckle of the Proto-Three Kingdoms period]]
The Proto-Three Kingdoms period, sometimes called the Several States Period (열국시대), is the time before the rise of the [[Three Kingdoms of Korea]], which included [[Goguryeo]], [[Silla]], and [[Baekje]], and occurred after the fall of [[Gojoseon]]. This time period consisted of numerous states that sprang up from the former territories of Gojoseon. Among these states, the largest and most influential were [[Dongbuyeo]] and [[Bukbuyeo]].
=== Buyeo ===
==== Bukbuyeo ====
After the fall of [[Gojoseon]], [[Hae Mosu]], a person of Gojoseon descent, gathered an army of Gojoseon people at Ungshin Mountain in order to establish a kingdom that would reassert the glories of Gojoseon. In [[2333 BC]], Hae Mosu established [[Bukbuyeo|Buyeo]], and was given the title of "Dangun," which was the title given to the rulers of Gojoseon. Hae Mosu and his descendants ruled over Buyeo through seven generations. Hae Mosu and his descendants constantly fought with [[Wiman Joseon]] and its many neighbors. Buyeo slowly began to conquer these neighboring states, reunifying much of Gojoseon's former territories. Buyeo split in [[86 BC]], after the death of its 4th Dangun, [[Go Uru of Buyeo|Hae Uru]]. With the death of Hae Uru, the throne of Buyeo was given to [[Hae Buru]], the brother of Hae Uru. Hae Buru was challenged by another contender to the throne, [[Go Dumak of Bukbuyeo|Go Dumak]], who was the descendant of [[Goyeolga of Gojoseon|Goyeolga Dangun]], who was the last ruler of Gojoseon. Hae Buru was defeated and fled to the east, where he reopened his kingdom, forming Dongbuyeo. After this event, Go Dumak combined the Dongmyeong kingdom with Buyeo, forming [[Jolbon Buyeo]]. Go Dumak continued on as the 5th ruler of Buyeo, and passed the throne to his son, [[Go Museo of Bukbuyeo|Go Museo Dangun]], upon his death in [[60 BC]]. Go Museo ruled over Jolbon Buyeo for two years before dying in [[38 BC]]. Go Museo Dangun had no sons, therefore, gave the throne to his son-in-law, who was [[Jumong]], the founder of [[Goguryeo]]. Jolbon Buyeo later became the foundation for establishing Goguryeo, which was the northernmost and grew to become the most powerful of the [[Three Kingdoms of Korea]].
==== Dongbuyeo ====
Dongbuyeo was founded in [[86 BC]], by [[Hae Buru|King Hae Buru]], who was the brother of [[Bukbuyeo|Buyeo]]'s 4th Dangun. Hae Buru was succeeded by [[Geumwa]], who is mentioned in the Goguryeo Founding Myth. Geumwa's son, [[Daeso]], becomes the third and last king of Dongbuyeo. He fights against [[Daemusin of Goguryeo|King Daemusin]], and is killed, bringing an end to Dongbuyeo.
=== Okjeo ===
The Kingdom of Okjeo was a tribal state that was located in the northern [[Korean Peninsula]], and was established after the fall of Gojoseon. Okjeo had been a part of Gojoseon before its fall. It never became a fully-developed kingdom due to the intervention of its neighboring kingdoms. Okjeo became a tributary of Goguryeo, and was eventually annexed into Goguryeo by [[Gwanggaeto the Great of Goguryeo|Gwanggaeto Taewang]] in the 5th century.
Dongye was another small kingdom that was situated in the northern [[Korean Peninsula]]. Dongye bordered [[Okjeo]], and the two kingdoms faced the same fate of becoming tributaries of the growing empire of [[Goguryeo]]. Dongye was also a former part of [[Gojoseon]] before its fall.
After the fall of [[Gojoseon]] in [[239 BC]], [[Choe Soong]], a former Gojoseon official, established a "new Gojoseon" in Liaoning, calling it Nangnang-guk or "Nangnang nation." After a few years, the Nangnang Nation moved south into the [[Korean peninsula]] near the [[Taedong River]], due to constant attacks by [[Wiman Joseon]]. Though its existence is in high dispute, certain passages in [[Samguk Sagi]] and several other ancient sources have provided proof. It coexisted with and paid tribute to [[Bukbuyeo|Buyeo]]. Though most of its rulers are unknown or unnamed in historical texts, the last ruler is named. [[Choe Ri]] was the last ruler of Nangnang Joseon and was the father of Princess Nangnang, who was one of the main characters in a historical Korean love story. She and Prince Hodong of Goguryeo were lovers that stayed with each other despite the war between [[Goguryeo]] and Nangnang Joseon. Nangnang Joseon was conquered by Goguryeo in [] CE.
=== Samhan ===
Samhan refers to the three confederacies of [[Mahan]], [[Jinhan]], and [[Byeonhan]]. The Samhan were located in the southern region of the [[Korean Peninsula]]. These three confederacies eventually become the foundations, at which [[Baekje]], [[Silla]], and [[Gaya]] were established. Mahan was the largest and consisted of 54 states. Byeonhan and Jinhan both consisted of 12 states, bringing a total of 78 states within the Samhan. The term "Samhan" is later used to describe the [[Three Kingdoms of Korea]].