Korean Particles

Korean has particles that do not exist in English. These particles allow the listener or reader to know exactly what the subject, object, and topic of a Korean sentence are.

This is done in English with word order. ex. The monkey(subject) eats a banana(object).

This is also done in Korean as you learned in part 9 of How to Read Korean Hangul. ex. The monkey(subject) a banana(object) eats.

Korean sentences can become very long or confusing which is true of any language. When this happens, Korean particles are used to organize and make sentence meaning clear. The particles are not used when it is clear who or what the topic, subject, and object are in spoken Korean sentences.

In formal written Korean, the particles are always used.

Korean Subject Particles 이 and 가

and are subject particles. Their function is to indicate the subject in a Korean sentence.

Particles are attached directly to nouns.

 

When to attach to a noun:

Words that end with a consonant use . ex. 달+ = 달 = moon

It is very important to remember the ㅇ pronunciation rule from part 8.

♦   “The final consonant(받침) that comes before a syllable starting with the letter ㅇ is pronounced in place of the letter ㅇ.”

Therefore the pronunciation of 달 = [다리]

When to attach 가 to a noun:

Words that end with a vowel use .ex. 비+ = 비 = rain

Korean Particles 이 and 가 Examples

Word Particle Word+Particle Pronunciation English Translation
[다리] moon
사람 사람 [사라미] person
머리 머리 [머리가] head
[차가] car

 

Korean Topic Particles 은 and 는

and are topic particles. Their function is to indicate the topic in a Korean sentence.

Particles are attached directly to nouns.

 

When to attach 은 to a noun:

Words that end with a consonant use . ex. 달+ = 달 = moon

It is very important to remember the ㅇ pronunciation rule from part 8.

♦   “The final consonant(받침) that comes before a syllable starting with the letter ㅇ is pronounced in place of the letter ㅇ.”

Therefore the pronunciation of 달 = [다른]

When to attach to a noun:

Words that end with a vowel use .ex. 비+ = 비 = rain

Korean Particles 은 and 는 Examples

Word Particle Word+Particle Pronunciation English Translation
[다른] moon
사람 사람 [사라믄] person
머리 머리 [머리는] head
[차는] car

Korean Topic Particles and

and mark the topic of a sentence which usually is also the subject of a sentence. For this reason and often replace and in sentences.

and simply indicate the subject of a sentence.

So why use or in place of or ?

and are used for emphasis and comparison.

 

Uses of and :

  • “as for”

ex. 남자 as for the man

ex. sentence 남자 행복해요. =  As for this man, he is happy.

 

  • “opposed to other”

ex. 남자 Opposed to other men, this man

ex. sentence 남자 행복해요. =  Opposed to other men, this man is happy.

 

  • “different from other”

ex. 남자 Different from other men, this man   

ex. sentence 남자 행복해요. =  Different from other men, this man is happy.

 

  • “compared to other”

ex. 남자 Compared to other men, this man   

ex. sentence 남자 행복해요. =  Compared to other men, this man is happy.

 

  • “about”

ex. 남자 About this man   

ex. sentence 남자 행복해요. =  About this man, he is happy.

Korean Object Particles 을 and 를

and are subject particles. Their function is to indicate the object in a Korean sentence.

Particles are attached directly to nouns.

 

When to attach to a noun:

Words that end with a consonant use . ex. 달+ = 달 = moon

It is very important to remember the ㅇ pronunciation rule from part 8.

♦   “The final consonant(받침) that comes before a syllable starting with the letter ㅇ is pronounced in place of the letter ㅇ.”

Therefore the pronunciation of 달 = [다를]

When to attach 를 to a noun:

Words that end with a vowel use .ex. 비+ = 비 = rain

Korean Particles 을 and 를 Examples

Word Particle Word+Particle Pronunciation English Translation
[다를] moon
사람 사람 [사라믈] person
머리 머리 [머리를] head
[차를] car

Congratulations! 축하합니다!

You have finished the Hello In Korean Guide for How to Read Korean Hangul.

You should now be able to pick up any level 1 Korean learning resource and jump right in.

There are exceptions to rules in every language and Korean is no different.

Thank you so much for learning to read Korean Hangul at www.helloinkorean.com and good luck on your journey to becoming fluent in Korean.

Try out your new skills with this 99 cent Bilingual Kindle Book in English and Korean: Monkey

or Bilingual Book in English and Korean: Chameleon.

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