So we know that nouns can act as verb in a sentece, well this happens both in English and Korean language. For the purpose of this post, verbal nouns (or nouns that acts as verb in sentence) can be further categorized as Processive or Descriptive. This somehow clears some of the questions I have on verbs and nouns in Korean.
Let’s deal with Processive Verbal Nouns first. These are the type where the verbal noun can be separated from the versatile verb 하 (ha which means does/ performs action or says/speak. So literally its verbal noun + verb 하 (infinitive form is 해 for intimate conversation or 해요 as polite verb ending).
Let’s use the example 구경 (kukyong which means watches or views). This is an example of a processive noun and can be expressed in these ways:
- 구경해요 – kukyeonghaeyo or
- 구경을 해요 – kukyeongeul haeyo, where 구경을 becomes an object of the verb 해.
The same pattern will be true for verbal nouns such as 일 (il or work), 청소 (cheongso or clean), 확인 (hwag.in or check) etc.
- 일(을) 해 – ireul hae or ilhae
- 청소(를) 해 – cheongsoreul hae or cheongsohae
- 확인(을) 해 – hwakineul hae or hwakinhae
I used to think 해 is something optional and wasn’t really clear on when to use it and when not. This lesson in the book explains it. Got to read Descriptive Verbal Nouns now.