Buyeo, an ancient precursor of Goguryeo and the Three Kingdoms of Korea, sits in the area of North Korea and Manchuria. Buyeo constitutes a possible link between the ancient, mythical and legendary kingdoms in Manchuria and northern Korea, Gojoseon and Gija Joseon, and the historical kingdom of Goguryeo. The origin of the Korean people lies buried in the myth of Dangun and the legend of Gija. That the kingdoms of Gojoseon and Gija Joseon existed is hotly debated. Few argue the myth of Dangun constitutes an actual story about the origin of the Korean people, although Chinese scholars and some Korean scholars argue that the myth conveys the reality that migrating Chinese people established both Gojoseon and Gija Joseon.
Historians and archaeologists have found little evidence of the existence of Gojoseon or Gija Joseon other than accounts in ancient Chinese histories. That makes the kingdom of Buyeo more significant to understanding the origin of the Korean people. Legend has that Buyeo grew out of the collapsed Gojoseon kingdom. Few historians doubt the historical existence of Buyeo. And the existence of the kingdom of Goguryeo, one of the Three Kingdoms of Korea, lay well beyond the realm of doubt.
Just as the ancient Gaya confederacy played a key role in the creation of the Silla and Baekje kingdoms, and consequently in the creation of the Unified Silla dynasty, Buyeo played a key role in the creation of Goguryeo and, thus, in the Unified Silla dynasty. Silla defeated Goguryeo, incorporating much of the fallen kingdom into Unified Silla. Balhae emerged out of the northern Goguryeo kingdom, co-existing with Unified Silla until they both fell around 930 C.E.
Although the origin of the Korean people and nation has been hotly debated by Chinese, North Korean, and South Korean scholars of late, none will dispute that northern Korean in the current region of Manchuria arose out of heavy influence from China. Archaeological evidence points to a direct link between of Manchuria, northern Korea, and China. Apparently the Koreans in Manchuria and northern Korean had no link with the Neolithic people who lived in Manchuria and northern Korea. The south, with less ancient roots, has dubious connections with China. Even the south's culture had profound influence from India. Actually, ancient Korea blended two distinctly different cultures; south and north. Buyeo served as the dynamic to convey Chinese ethnic and cultural heritage to Goguryeo, hence Unified Silla, Goryeo, and Joseon dynasties.