It Has Been Ages–I am Back!

I hibernated for so long. Honestly I have not been reading my book since the last post I made.  I have so many excuses — yes they are excuses because when you are determined to do something you will make time for it.   My other activities made me escape such determination to fully learn Hangul.

I was a bit disappointed with myself.  After reading Elementary Korean which is seriously thick and started with Continuing Korean (advance book), I had this thinking that I am advance as well but I wasn’t — and I figure it out in a little painful way.  Sometimes you really have to humble yourself.   It kinda distracted me in away. 

Anyway I am back with my senses and there are two key learnings that are too basic but I almost neglected, first, it’s best to apply what you learned by communicating to someone who is native either orally or written.  Second, make sure you review what you have learned. 

In this post let me share some points I have learned from my Language Exchange Partners (LEP).   I really did not stop from learning but took the time to see other venues to learn the language.  Thanks to my LEPs 🙂

One very important thing to know is the use of words.  In any language there are synonyms and it’s quite important to know when to use one from another.  It also allows you to understand better the meaning of the statement.

From my previous post on couting days, I have learned that  day is 일 (il) in Korean, which also means one (1) in Sino Korean or the verb ‘work’.   So there is a possiblity of hearing 일일 (iril) to day one day but a month is normally used with it such that 삼월 일일 (samwol il il) means 1st of March.

Still on the word day, I also encountered 하루 (haru) which also means day but is specifically one day.  I first encountered this word when another LEP wrote to me 하루 잘 보내요 (haru jal bonaeyo – have a good day).  According to my LEP this is more used to pertain to 1 day than 일일.  So this is how 하루 하루 (Haru Haru) song of 빅뱅 (Big Bang — a popular boy group in Korea) became known as ‘Day by Day’.   Likewise he said 하루하루 could also mean everyday which is similar to 매일 (maeil).

Another word in Korean which also means day is 날  (nal).  Well, I have no idea this word means day until that song 다음 날 (Daum nal) of Seungri from the same group Big Bang.  I like that song so I tried to find for the translation of the lyrics and in the course, I have learned it means  ‘the next day’ or ‘the day after’.   I also took the chance to clear this with my LEP and he said that this word normally cannot stand on its own.  It cannot be used to with a count word to count  days,  so it’s not normal to hear 두 날 (du nal) to say 2 days such that 일날 (il nal) cannot be used in the context of Sino Korean number 일 (means 1) and word 날 as day together.  Instead 일날 would simple mean day.   This explains why my LEP mentioned that this Korean word is commonly used together with the word 일.   I remember reading about this on Elementary Korean, that it is acceptable to use 날 along with 일 when counting days, seems to be redundant but acceptable.  Likewise, 날 is used to pertain to anniversaries  like 어버이날 (Eobeoinal) which means Parent’s Day.

This learning is really something basic but it worthwhile to know so you can effectively use word in its appropriate context. 

I hope to keep up with this, thanks to my LEPs for helping me to continuously learn despite my excuses.

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Difference Between (으)러 and 서

One of the first verb endings I learned is the purposive type (-으)러.  When i was starting to learn Korean I was so curious on how statements can be constructed because I am always reminded by the fact that verb is the most important part of it.  I was asking my self what if  i need to use two verbs?   The use of the purposive verb for that moment relieved me with such problem.  Now two verbs can exist in a sentence .  

The purposive verb (으)러 and the recent verb ending I learned which is -서 are almost the same in use.  This is how I found out the difference: 

  1. 친구를 만나러 상가에 갔어요. (Chingureul manareo sagange kasseoyo.)  I went to the mall with the purpose of meeting a friend.
  2. 상가에 가서 친구를 만났어요. (Sagange kaseo chingureul  mannasseoyo.) I went to the mall and met a frined or I went to the mall to meet a friend.

The two sentences seems to mean the same on the onset but if you carefully check on it you will notice that the first statement doesn’t tell you if the purpose has been done or accomplished.  Unlike the second sentence which emphasized more on meeting the friend than going to the mall.

I am beginning to love Continuing Korean more, i like it that the uses of these verb endings are given more details now.

Difference Between -고 and -서

Last week I learned two useful verb ending that will help connect phrases or thoughts. These are the verb endings -고 and -서 . These two verbs ending is almost the same in function but have difference in meaning. Difference can be noted in the example below:

  1. 약국에 가 약을 샀어요. (Yakkuke kago yakeul sasseoyo.) I went to the pharmacy and bought medicine.
  2. 약국에 가 약을 샀어요. (Yakkuke kaso yakeul sasseoyo.) I went to the pharmacy so as to buy medicine.

The first sentence where -고 is used, going to the pharmacy and buying of medicine is merely a declaration of two. The second sentence on the otherhand shows purpose/result sentence construction.

So in an English point of view -고 is used to connect phrases to resemble these thought pattern– ‘ and (then afterwards)‘ or  ‘and (also in addition). While -서 goes by the thought patterns ‘so‘ or ‘so as to’, it can also mean ‘and then afterwards’ but with emphasis on purpose-result sentence pattern.  This means the two phrases or ideas are more linked as sequence of events.