Humanities › History & Culture Rain Gauge Share Flipboard Email Print ZenShui/Sigrid Olsson / Getty Images History & Culture Inventions Famous Inventions Famous Inventors Patents & Trademarks Invention Timelines Computers & The Internet American History African American History African History Ancient History and Culture Asian History European History Genealogy Latin American History Medieval & Renaissance History Military History The 20th Century Women's History View More By Mary Bellis Inventions Expert Mary Bellis covered inventions and inventors for ThoughtCo for 18 years. She is known for her independent films and documentaries, including one about Alexander Graham Bell. our editorial process Mary Bellis Updated December 09, 2019 One source has is that the son of King Sejong the Great, a member of the Choson Dynasty who reigned from 1418 to 1450, invented the first rain gauge. King Sejong sought ways to improve agricultural technology to provide his subjects with adequate food and clothing. Korean Inventions In improving agricultural technology, Sejong contributed to the sciences of astronomy and meteorology. He invented an alphabet and calendar for the Korean people and ordered the development of accurate clocks. When droughts plagued the kingdom, King Sejong directed every village to measure the amount of rainfall. His son, the crown prince, later called King Munjong, inherited Sejon's innovation. Munjong invented a rain gauge while measuring rainfall at the palace. He decided that, instead of digging into the earth to check rain levels, it would be better to use a standardized container. King Sejong sent a rain gauge to every village, and they were used as an official tool to measure the farmer's potential harvest. Sejong also used these measurements to determine what the farmer's land taxes should be. The rain gauge was invented in the fourth month of 1441, two hundred years before inventor Christopher Wren created a rain gauge (tipping bucket rain gauge ca. 1662) in Europe.