I got a few South Korean bank notes at Incheon airport on Saturday. The won has been in use for thousands of years, but represented by different denominations and notes over the centuries, of course. Today South Korean paper money comes in 50,000 won (introduced only in 2009, equal to US$ 45), 10,000 won (US$ 9), 5,000 won (US$ 4.50) and and 1,000 won (US$ 0.90). So the $9 in exchange for the 10,000 won note is fine for adding it to my world money collection.
The front of the 10,000 won note shows Sejong the Great, the fourth king of the Joseon Dynasty of Korea (born May 7, 1397 – dec. May 18, 1450). The background contains a folding screen from this time, and text from the first work of literature written in Korean. The work is called ‘Songs of the Dragons Flying to Heaven’, and was also compiled during this time.