Dr. Iuchi Isao (井內功, 1911~1992), a Japanese dentist, became interested in Korean roof tiles as a child, when his uncle gave him an animal-patterned roof tile from Unified Silla. Later, he created the Iuchi Isao Ancient Culture Study Room in his house, where he studied Korean roof tiles and bricks and published numerous papers.

In 1987, Dr. Iuchi donated 1,082 roof tiles and bricks from his collection to the National Museum of Korea, with the goal of promoting friendly relations between Korea and Japan. The roof tiles and bricks encompass the entire history of Korean tiles, throughout Nangnang, the Three Kingdoms period, Unified Silla, Goryeo, and Joseon. Thus, the items in Dr. Iuchi’s collection are indispensable resources for studying the development of Korean roof tiles and bricks.

A large number of the donated items are from the Unified Silla period, but the collection also includes many rare roof tiles and bricks from Goguryeo and Nangnang which have been difficult to find in South Korea.