Meaning and Uses of -고

The -고 (-ko) verb is mainly used to connect to sentences just the way English uses ‘and’ to connect phrases that may or may not stand alone as a phrase.  Unlike the English ‘and’ the -고 verb is used with these two meanings:

  • does this and also…
  • having done or been [so and so] and then…

When -고 is used to break a long sentence into parts, the actions linked by the -고 verb normally happens alongside each other. Below are some samples of its use:

  • [and also] 나한테는 가방을 주고, 언니한테는 꽃을 드렸어요 (Nahanteneun jugo, eonnihanteneun kkocheul deuryeosseoyo)  He gave me a bag and gave my sister flowers.  Note that the past tense is apply only in the verb at the end, this is because verbs in -고 form does not take tenses.
  • [and then] 나는 아침을 먹고 도서관에 갔어요 (Naneun achimeul mokko doseogwane kasseoyo) I ate lunch and then went to the library.