Here is a quick review of the different syllable constructions used in Korean.

ㅈ+ㅣ+ㅂ = 집

ㄱ+ㅗ+ㅇ = 공

ㅇ+ㅜ+ㅓ+ㄴ = 원

In addition to these constructions there is one more. This construction is made with two consonants at the end of a syllable in the 받침. ex. 닭, 긁다, 앉다, 없다, 읽다

ㄷ+ㅏ+ㄹ+ㄱ = 닭

ㄱ+ㅡ+ㄹ+ㄱ+ㄷ+ㅏ = 긁다

Only one of the two ending consonants in the 받침 is pronounced in these words. There is an exception to this rule which will be explained in part 8 of How to Read Korean Hangul.

Which consonant that is pronounced must be memorized on a word by word basis.

Thankfully there are not many four letter Korean syllables in the Korean language. The following table will display common four letter Korean syllables and their pronunciations.

Four Letter Korean Syllables

(Words when the first of the two final consonants is pronounced)

Word Pronunciation Romanization English Translation
없다 [업따] eopda to not have, to not exist, be gone, none
[갑] kap value, price
앉다 [안따] anda sit
여덟 [여덜] yeodul eight

Four Letter Korean Syllables

(Words when the second of the two final consonants is pronounced)

Word Pronunciation Romanization English Translation
 닭 [닥] tak chicken
긁다 [극따] keukda scratch
읽다 [익따] ikda read
젊다 [점따] cheomda young
맑다 [막따] makda clear

Korean Study Tips

♦   These are the most common four letter Korean syllable words so they are good to memorize.

♦   Remember, ㄲ, ㄸ, ㅃ, ㅆ, and ㅉ are each considered to be a single letter.

♦   Remember, ㅘ, ㅢ, ㅝ, ㅟ, ㅞ, ㅙ, and ㅚ are each considered to be a single letter.

Go to Part 8 – The ㅇ Pronunciation Rule

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