Happy New Year…2008 and Counting

The year 2008 is just around the corner.  Four days from now, 2007 is history.  With this I hope every people I love spend a very happy new year.  This greeting is so common that most language have their own translation of Happy New Year.  In tagalog this greeting is said as ‘Manigong Bagong Taon’.  ‘Manigo’ stands for happy while ‘Bago’ means new and taon is year.  I asked a friend how this greeting is said in Korean.  It’s kinda different:

 새해 복 많이 받으세요 (Saehae Bowk Manhi Paduseyo) 새해 means new year while 복 (book) means fortune and blessing. The translation is not as direct as how it is in Tagalog.  The last phrase means ‘to receive plentifully’, 많이 (manhi) means plentifully while  받으세요 (paduseyo) means to receive.

I have been trying hard to learn Hangul for almost four months now and yet I have not dwell on numbers. I know some but deifinitely knowing these basics are important.  One, two, three and four are simple… 하나 (hana), 둘 (tul), 셋 (set) and 넷 (net).  Of course the first number that I memorized is se7en 😛 which is 일곱 (ilgop).  There are two sets of numbers in Korea. One is the native Korean numbers and the other one is the Sino Korean (derived from Chinese).  For now I wanted to master the Korean way of counting.  Count words are usually in native Korean numbers as in one cup, three hours, four books etc.  The other set of numbers  (Sino Korean) are used for money, dates and foreign borrowed words. To tell time is a little different, for the hours, the Korean numbers are used but minutes and seconds are expressed in Sino Korean (so different right?).

These are the basic Korean numbers:

  • 하나 (hana) 1
  • 둘 (tul) 2
  • 셋 (set) 3
  • 넷 (net) 4
  • 다섯 (taseot) 5
  • 여삿 (yoseot) 6
  • 일곱 (ilgop) 7
  • 여덟 (yodeol –ㅂ is silent or swallowed) 8
  • 아홉 (ahop) 9
  • 열 (yol) 10
  • 스물 (sumul) 20
  • 서른 (seorun) 30
  • 마흔 (mahun) 40
  • 쉰 (shwin) 50
  • 예순 (yesun) 60
  • 일흔 (ilhup) 70
  • 여든 (yodul) 80
  • 아흔 (ahun) 90

To say 42, it is 마흔 (mahun) + 넷 (net) same goes for 31 or 95 which are 서른 하나  (seorun hana) and 아흔 다섯 (ahun taseot) respectively. There is no native Korean number for 100 and above, the Sino Korean numbers are used as such the last native Korean number that can be said is 아흔 아홉 (ahun ahop) for 99.  Special mention on the number 17 which is combination of 열 (yol)  and 이곱 (ilgop) instead of saying yolilgop the ㄹ character uses its r sound instead so it is pronounced as yorilgop.

Directional Particles To and From

Previously I learned that the particle 에 is used to mark location (whether inside, outside, front, back etc.).  This particle is versitile as it is also used to mark ‘TO’ direction like when you say going to Makati….or to Cubao.  The particle 에 (pronounced as eh) is also used to mark direction to for places or non living things while for living things 한테 (pronounced as han-te) is used.  Here are some examples:

  • 이본에 가요 (ilbone kayo) – goes to Japan
  • 식당에 가요 (shiktang kayo) – goes to restaurant or canteen
  • 내 어머니한테 줘요 (nae omonihante  jwoyo) – gives to my mother or can be
  • 내 어머니에게 줘요 (nae omoni-eke jwoyo)

To express ‘direction from’ 서  is added to the previous particle. So for living thins it will 한테서 (hanteso) or 에게서 (ekeso) while for non-living things or places it will be 에서.  These are some examples I can think of:

  • 내 친구한테서 (chingu hanteso) – from my friend
  • 진며 씨한태서 (JinMyungshi hanteso) – from Jinmyung or it can also be written as 진며 씨에게서 (JinMyungshi ekeso)
  • 식당에서 (shiktangeso) – from the restaurant or canteen

Since these are particles, there should not be any pause when pronouncing it along with the word it preceeds as if it’s just one word.

Christmas Greetings

I missed writing on this site as I was aways for couple of days for a vacation.   Since it is nearing Christmas, I asked my Korean friend how to extend greetings this holiday the Hanguk way.

At least from movies and dramas I watched, Koreans celebrates Christmas too. My friend said that they also use Merry Christmas and Happy New Year when greeting people but there is of course the Hanguk way.  Christmas is called 성탄절 (seong-tan-jeol) in Korea as such Merry Christmas can be said this way in Korea:

  • 성탄절 잘 보내 (seong-tan-jeol jal boe-nae) jal means to be good so i think this is wishing someone to have a good christmas.
  • 기쁜 성탄 (gi-ppeun seong-tan) since gippeun is happy in Korean I think this means happy christmas.
  • 크리스마스 잘 보내 (ku-ri-su-ma-su jal boe-nae) is a more common greetings.  One may find it funny its romanized that way but this is simply because of some hangul phoenetic rules but pronunciation is really not that far with the smooth Christmas in English.