Julia Mullock

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Julia Mullock
Empress consort of Korea (titular)
Tenure 1 May 1970 - 1982
Predecessor Crown Princess Euimin
Spouse Prince Imperial Hoeun
Born (1928-03-18) 18 March 1928 (age 86)
Pennsylvania, United States

Julia Mullock (born 18 March 1928) became a disputed member of the Korean Imperial Household with the title Her Imperial Highness Princess Julia Lee of Korea when she became the de facto wife of Gu, Prince of Korea. The two were never legally married[1] by Korean custom, in that Mullock was not included in the Yi family registry, and because of this Mullock later had trouble processing a divorce application in the United States from Prince Gu.[1]

Born in the U.S. state of Pennsylvania, Julia came from a Ukrainian American family. She was working in the architectural practice of IM Pei when Prince Gu, fresh out of MIT with architecture degree, joined the New York firm. Tired of the work, she made a decision to move to Spain, and taped a sales ad on the firm's notice board for her apartment. Gu saw the notice, visited the apartment, and instead of purchasing it, he persuaded Julia to stay. Julia, whose parents were from Ukraine, was deeply moved when Gu uttered a few words in clumsy Russian he was taught by Ukrainian college roommates.[citation needed]

In 1958 she met his parents, Prince Eun and Princess Bangja. In May 1958, Julia and Gu were engaged; they were married at St George's Church in New York on 25 October 1959. The happiest time of their marriage was when the newly-weds lived in Hawaii near her parents-in-law.

On 15 June 1963, Julia visited Korea with her husband, arriving at Gimpo Airport on 22 November 1963. She lived in a new building in Nakseon Hall, Changdeok Palace, Seoul with her husband, and with her mother-in-law, Princess Bangja, she worked for many charities. Her husband divorced her in 1982 under pressure from the imperial family, as she had produced no heir.

In 1995 she left for Hawaii. On 1 May 2005 she attended religious ceremonies at the Royal Ancestors' Shrine (Jomngmyo Jerye) with Mrs Gwon Heesun, her lady-in-waiting, and Princess Lee Haewon, a daughter of Prince Gang of Korea.

Prince Gu, her former husband, who spent his time travelling back and forth between Japan and Korea, died of a heart attack at the age of seventy-four.

She currently lives in an apartment in Gangnam-gu, Seoul, South Korea.

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Titles in pretence
Preceded by
Ri Masako
— TITULAR —
Empress consort of Korea
1 May 1970 - 1982
Reason for succession failure:
Empire abolished by Japanese annexation 1910
Vacant
Title next held by
Unknown