Historical BL Manhwa Recs like Painter of the Night

Historical BL manhwa lovers, rise up!

With the rise of Korean manhwa, it’s no surprise we also get historical manhwa based on Korean culture. Ever since Painter of the Night’s release, so many other different Historical manhwas have been slowly emerging, and I couldn’t be more thrilled!

Eager to know which ones have made it to this list?

1. Tale of the Yellow Dragon

Yooshin, the titular Yellow Dragon holding Dojin
"Tale of the Yellow Dragon" cover on Lezhin

Author: Brothers Without a Tomorrow
Status: Complete
Manga Rating: 8.2 / 10.0

In a jarring twist of fate, Dojin is ripped from the mortal realm and thrust into the enigmatic kingdom of Yooguk. Here, he is not merely a stranger but a revered emperor destined to serve the enigmatic deity known as the Yellow Dragon.

His mundane life is shattered, replaced with a divine mandate: to offer his life force as a bulwark against the encroaching darkness.

Yet, as Dojin finds himself increasingly entwined with the Yellow Dragon's chilling embrace, a desperate yearning for his former life gnaws at him. The pull of home, of his beloved sister and niece, tugs at his soul.

In this captivating tale of sacrifice and longing, we are left to wonder: how far will Dojin venture down this perilous path, and at what cost to his heart and spirit?

Review

The story is bittersweet and pretty unique from Brothers Without Tomorrow's other works. Sometimes, the plot gets a little confusing, and it's a bit sad to see Dojin and the Yellow Dragon separated.

In the end, it was all worth it. Their love spans multiple lifetimes, and even with all the heartache, it's beautiful. Plus, the art is gorgeous!

I'd recommend this to anyone who can handle a bit of angst and a whole lot of smut. And I'm talking about 70% of it too! Of course, it's not just about the steamy scenes. There are many romantic and funny scenes added into the mix as well!

Dojin and Yooshin's love story will really stick with you. Overall, the ending is worth it, even if it hurts.

2. Taming the Tiger

Geum-hoo holding a blade against his neck as Beom holds him in his arms
Taming the Tiger Lezhin cover

Author: Brothers Without a Tomorrow
Status: Complete
Manga Rating: 8.55 / 10.0

Ahn Geum-hoo, the eldest son of the Ahn household, needed the blood of livestock for his younger brother's medicine, and so he set out to find a pariah familiar with butchery.

In the process, he met a nameless pariah with a unique appearance.

He gave that man, who was already famous on the streets, the name 'Beom' and brought him into his house to use his ambiguous charisma.

However, at some point, even he was taken in by Beom's charm... The story of a noble who was captured by a tiger while trying to tame him.

Review

Brothers Without a Tomorrow have done it again!

Calling this manhwa "beautiful" doesn't even come close. If you've read "Tale of the Yellow Dragon," you know BWAT are masters of the tearjerker, but this one just hits differently. It's so heartbreaking, yet so damn beautiful.

The way their love is described, the way Geum-hoo calls Beom his "spring," is just absolutely pure. The art is amazing, too. You can appreciate even more with the smut scenes *wags eyebrows*

Fair warning: the ending will have you ugly crying, but the extra chapters bring the happy ending we all need. So, if you're looking for a rollercoaster of emotions with a satisfying ending, *Taming the Tiger* is a must-read.

Trust me, this is one of BWAT's greatest works. And that's saying something because all their work has been amazing!

3. Keeper of the Pearl

Keeper of the Pearl cover from Peanutoon
Keeper of the Pearl cover from Peanutoon

Keeper of the Pearl tells the tale of two star-crossed lovers, Jae Moon and Ji Yeon. Their bond is symbolized much like a dragon and its precious pearl because that's how inseparable they were in a past life.

Now, they've been reincarnated and find themselves face-to-face in the present day. But with all that past life baggage, can they reignite the love they once shared? This story is about second chances and the enduring power of love that transcends various lifetimes!

Review

The storyline is pretty solid. It's a classic tragic romance that turns into a happily ever after, which a lot of BL fans are always a sucker for. That, or you're probably traumatized by 10 Years I Loved You the Most and swore never to read angst again.

Fortunately for you, this manhwa isn't one of them!

For those who like their omegas strong and their alphas kind, *Keeper of the Pearl* ticks those boxes. Plus, you've got reincarnation, dragons, and ABO dynamics all rolled into one. And the art style is top-notch.

Overall, it is a good read that will leave you with smiles. Trust me, you won't regret it!

4. The Ghost's Nocturne

Jae-shin holding Lee Nok in his arms at a lake
The Ghost's Nocturne Lezhin cover

Author: ANANAS/C.R Jade Status: Ongoing Manga Rating: 9.0 / 10.0

Jae-shin, the prince of the underworld, is a huge troublemaker. He's got a party lifestyle with a revolving door of bed partners, and he thinks humans are the worst.

But karma's a b, and Jae-shin goes too far one day. His punishment? By day, he's a helpless puppy, and by night, he's human again. Talk about a 'ruff' life!

The only way to break this curse is to win over a human's heart. Easy, right? Nope! Lucky for Jae-shin, Prince Lee Nok takes this adorable puppy in, unaware of his true nature... until night fell.

Will Jae-shin's bad-boy charm work on the innocent prince? Or will Lee Nok melt Jae-shin's icy heart?

Review

"The Ghost's Nocturne" is a hidden gem in the BL world. And by that, I mean it's rarely discussed, but it deserves to be!

There's some non-con stuff early on, but it evolves into something more consensual. It's a common trope in BL, so it's pretty inevitable. If that's a hard no for you, then it's understandable.

However, you'll be missing out on a really good read. This manhwa is equal parts cute, funny, and angsty. Not to mention, the smut scenes are absolutely off the rails - I'm talking uncensored and all!

Plus, the art is divine. It looks like an actual historical painter drew it, and we mean it in a good way.

Oh, and if you're after the romance, then you may have to wait. The slow burn WILL slow burn. And second lead syndrome, who? Trust me, you'll be rotting for Jae-shin the entire time.

Do you have any recommendations to share? You can share more of your favorite historical Manhwa BL with the Otaku Community!

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