[Q&A] 이에요 vs 있어요

Many of my students are confused 이에요 and 있어요, so I am writing this post to make sure you understand 이에요 and 있어요.
이에요means “something/someone is/are/am a noun”. For example,
저는 한국 사람이에요. I am Korean.
(이 분이) 제 선생님이에요. This person is my teacher.
한국어 책이에요. It is a Korean book.
여기가 도서관이에요. Here is the library.
이게 제 가방이에요. This is my bag.

On the other hand, 있어요 has two different meanings. The first meaning is “have(possession)“, and the other one is “is/am/are at/in/on somewhere(existence)“. It is not just ‘is’, it means ‘is at/in/on somewhere(existence)‘.

Let’s look at some examples.
(저는) 한국 친구가 있어요. I have Korean friends. (possession)
시간이 많이 있어요. I have a lot of time. (possession)
앤디 씨는 가방이 많이 있어요. Andy has a lot of bags. (possession)
앤디 씨 집 가방이 많이 있어요. At Andy’s house, there are lots of bags. (existence)
미나 씨가 집에 있어요. Mina is at home. (existence)
마이크 씨가 한국에 있어요. Mike is in Korea. (existence)
제 집이 도서관 앞에 있어요. My house is in front of the library. (existence)
책상 책이 있어요. There is a book on the desk.(existence)
교실 옆 화장실이 있어요. There is a bathroom next to the classroom. (existence)

As you can see, when 있어요 means “be at some place“, 있어요 follows after “-에” which is a place particle.

Let’s look at these two sentences.
1. 여기가 도서관이에요. Here is the library.
2. 제 집이 도서관 앞에 있어요. My house is in front of the library.

In these two sentences, 이에요 and 있어요 are used with a noun(place), however, 이에요 means “is a noun” while 있어요 means “is at a place

Do you know what the opposite word of 이에요? It is 아니에요(is not a noun). You can learn 아니에요 by clicking here.

How about the opposite word for 있어요? It is 없어요. For more examples of -에 있어요/없어요 by clicking here. For more examples of 있어요(possession) by clicking here.


[Grammar]-부터, -에서, -까지 / from, to

-부터 and -에서 are particles, they mean ‘from-‘. The difference of those two is that ‘-부터’ is often used for time, -에서 is often used for place. And -까지 means ‘to-‘ or ‘until-‘, you can use it for both time and place.

Noun + 부터(from- : time)


Noun + 까지(from- : place)

For example,

  • Noun+부터(from-)
1시부터 공부해요. I study from 1 o’clock.
언제부터 시작해요? When do we start?
아침부터 저녁까지 일해요. I work from morning to evening.
어제부터 오늘 아침까지 회의를 했어요. I have had a meeting from yesterday to this morning.
오늘부터 담배를 끊을 거예요. I am going to quit smoking from today.
  • Noun+에서(from)
에서 3시에 나왔어요. I left home at 3.
어느 나라에서 왔어요? Which country did you come from?
서울에서 부산까지 3시간 걸려요. It takes 3 hours from Seoul to Busan.
서울에서 몇 시에 출발할 거예요? What time are you departing from Seoul?
  • Noun+까지(to, until, by-)
1시까지 공부할 거예요. I will study until 1.
내일까지 끝낼 거예요. I will finish it by tomorrow.
부산까지 표가 얼마예요? How much is the ticket to Busan?
지하철 역까지 같이 걸어 가요. Let’s walk together to the subway station.

You can listen to the pronunciation here.

[Grammar] -으니까 Because, reason

-(으)니까 Because~, therefore/so~


-(으)니까 means ‘because’ which expresses ‘reason’.  Let’s see the conjugation.

When a verb stem ends with a consonant + 으니까
When a verb stem ends with a vowel + 니까

For example,

날씨가 으니까 공원에 같이 가요.
The weather is nice, (so) let’s go to the park.
비가 니까 우산을 가져 가세요.
It is raining, (so) you should bring an umbrella.

  • In formal sentences, we often omit 까 and just say -(으)니.

It is often compared ‘-아/어/여서’(click here), the difference between ‘-아/어/여서’ and ‘-(으)니까’ is

1) -아/어/여서 can’t be used for suggesting, requesting or ordering, whereas -(으)니까 can.   For example,

  • 날씨가 좋아서 공원에 같이 가요. (X) => 날씨가 좋으니까 공원에 같이 가요. (O)
    같이 가요 => suggestion ; therefore you can’t use -아서
  • 비가 와서 우산을 가져 가세요. (X)  => 비가 오니까 우산을 가져 가세요. (O)
    -(으)세요 is an imperative verb ending; therefore you can’t use -아서
    • verb endings for suggesting are ‘-는 게 어때요?‘, -(으)ㄹ까요?, ‘-(으)ㅂ시다‘, ‘-자‘, ‘같이 -아/어/여요‘ etc and verb endings for requesting or ordering are  ‘-(으)세요‘, ‘-(으)십시오‘ etc.


2) You can’t use the past tense in front of -아/어/여서, while you can put the past tense in front of -(으)니까.  For example,

  • 어제 공부 많이 했어서 피곤해요. (X)    => 어제 공부 많이 해서 피곤해요. (O)
  • 어제 제가 이 영화를 봤으니까 오늘은 다른 영화를 봅시다. (O)



3) often used for general statements or emotion verbs=> -아/어/여서. For example,

  • 만나서 반갑습니다.  Glad to meet you! ( I am happy because I meet you.)
  • 도와 주셔서 감사합니다.  Thanks for your help! (I appreciate because you helped me.)
  • 늦어서 죄송합니다.  Sorry for being late. ( I am sorry because I am late.)
  • 배가 아파서 학교에 안 갔어요. ( I didn’t go to school because my stomach hurt.)



여기 좀 시끄러우니까 다른 데로 가는 게 어때요?
It is loud here, how about going to another place?
민수 씨, 술을 많이 마셨으니까 운전 하지 마세요.
Minsu, You drank a lot, don’t drive!
여기는 도서관이니까 조용히 해야 돼요.
Because we are at the library, we should be quite.
제가 아직 집에 있으니까 조금만 기다려 주세요.
I am still at home, please wait for me a little bit more.
저도 아침을 안 먹었으니까 같이 밥 먹으러 가요.
I haven’t had breakfast yet, let’s go eat.
오늘은 제가 좀 피곤하니까 내일 갈까요?
I am a little bit tired today, can we go tomorrow?
이 우유는 상했으니까 먹지 마세요.
This milk has gone bad, don’t drink it!

You can listen to audio pronunciation on my Quizlet.com. (Click here) 

 If you want to learn more about -(으)니까, please click here.

[Grammar] -아/어/여서 ‘Because’, reasons

-아/어/여서 Because


-아/어/여서 means ‘because’ in English, it takes place after a verb or an adjective.  The conjugation is

1. When a verb/adjective stem ends with ‘아/오’ vowel  + 아서

i.e) – 비가 오(다) => 오(ㅗ vowel) +아서

– 잠을 못 자(다) => 자(ㅏ vowel) + 아서

2. When a verb/adjective stem ends with other vowels besides ‘아/오’ + 어서

– 밥을 안 먹(다) => 먹(ㅓ vowel) + 어서

– 술을 마시(다) => 마시(ㅣ vowel) + 어서

– 아직 안 배우(다) => 배우(ㅜ vowel) + 어서

3. When a verb or an adjective stem ends with ‘하’  + 여서 => 하여 =>

– 공부를 안 하(다) + 여서 => 공부를 안 해서

– 피곤하(다) + 여서 => 피곤해서


비가 와서 날씨가 시원해요.
Because it rains, it is cool.
어제 잠을 못 자서 피곤해요.
Because I didn’t sleep well yesterday, I am tired.
밥을 안 먹어서 배가 고파요.
Because I haven’t had a meal, I am hungry.
어제 술을 많이 마셔서 머리가 아파요.
Because I drank a lot yesterday, I have a headache.
아직 안 배워서 몰라요.
Because I haven’t learned yet, I don’t know.
공부를 안 해서 시험을 못 봤어요.
Because I didn’t study, I didn’t do well on my exam.
어제 피곤해서 잠을 많이 잤어요.
Because I was tired, I slept a lot.

You can listen to the pronunciation on my Quizlet.com (Click here).


As you can see on those sentences, you can’t add the tense in front of -아/어/여서 even though the event happened in the past.  If you want to express the tense, you can add the tense verb ending at the end of the sentence.


One more thing, you can’t use a suggestion sentence or an imperative sentence with -아/어/여서. For example,


Because the weather is nice, let’s go for a walk.  날씨가 좋아서 같이 산책해요.(X)
Because it rains, don’t go outside. 비가 와서 밖에 나가지 마세요.(X)
Because the tickets are sold out, can we see it tomorrow?  오늘 표가 없어서 내일 볼까요?(X)


If you want to use a suggestion or an imperative sentence, you should use -(으)니까.

Because the weather is nice, let’s go for a walk.  날씨가 좋으니까 같이 산책해요. (O)
Because it rains, don’t go outside. 비가 오니까 밖에 나가지 마세요.(O)
Because the tickets are sold out, can we see it tomorrow?   오늘 표가 없으니까 내일 볼까요?(O)


I will post more about -(으)니까 in the later post.


[Vocabulary] English words in Korean

핸드폰(Konglish) : hand+phone
cell phone
remote control

Konglish means Korean English 🙂
핸드폰 is also called 휴대전화(portable phone), however a lot of people use 핸드폰.

You can also listen to pronunciation here.

[Grammar] -아/어/여도 돼요/괜찮아요 : You can do~, Can I do~?

Verb+아/어/여도 돼요(되어요)
Verb+아/어/여도 괜찮아요

means ‘you can do~(permission)’ or ‘can I do~?(ask permission)”

A lot of Koreans write this ‘되요’ because the pronunciation of ‘되’ and ‘돼’ are the same!   However it is WRONG!!!!  You should write it ‘돼요’ instead of ‘되요’.

Verb(ends with 아 or 오vowel) + 아도 돼요/괜찮아요
Verb(ends with other vowels) + 어도 돼요/괜찮아요
Verb(ends with 하다) + 여도 돼요 => 해도 돼요/괜찮아요


가(다) go
아도 돼요
가도 돼요
You can go
보(다) watch
아도 돼요
봐도 돼요
You can watch
먹(다) eat
어도 돼요
먹어도 돼요
You can eat
마시(다) drink
어도 돼요
마셔도 돼요
You can drink
쓰(다) use, write
어도 돼요
써도 돼요(으 drop)
You can use
듣(다) listen
어도 돼요
들어도 돼요(ㄹ irregular)
You can listen
말하(다) speak
여도 돼요
말해도 돼요
You can say


Let’s make some sentences.

이제 집에 가도 돼요.
You can go home.
아이가 이 프로그램 봐도 돼요?
Can kids watch this program?
여기서 음식 먹어도 돼요?
Can I eat food here?
이 물 마셔도 돼요?
Can I drink this water?
이 컴퓨터 써도 돼요?(으 drop)
Can I use this computer?
여기에서 음악 들어도 돼요? ( irregular)
Can I listen to music here?
민수 씨한테 말해도 돼요?
Can I say this to Minsu?


If you add ‘안’ in front of this expression, it means ‘I(you) don’t need to do~’ or ‘I(you) don’t have to do~’.

오늘 학교 안 가도 돼요.
I(you) don’t need to go to school today.
몸이 안 좋으면 오늘 안 나와도 돼요.
You don’t need to come today if you don’t feel well.
배부르면 다 안 먹어도 돼요.
You don’t have to finish your food if you are full.
지금 이메일 안 보내도 돼요.
I(you) don’t need to send emails now.
지금 일 안 해도 돼요.
I(you) don’t need to do work now.

You can also listen to pronunciation here.

[Grammar] Verb-지 마세요 : Don’t ~

Verb-지 마세요

is a verb ending which means ‘Do not + verb’ in English.

It is originally ‘-지 말(다) +(으)세요’ (ㄹ drop).  


지 마세요
Do not eat
마시지 마세요
Do not drink
지 마세요
Do not go
지 마세요
Do not come
지 마세요
Do not watch
지 마세요
Do not do it
지 마세요
Do not cry
lean on
기대지 마세요
Do not lean on



Let’s make some sentences.

음식이 상했어요. 먹지 마세요.
The food has spoiled, do not eat it.
술 너무 많이 마시지 마세요.
Don’t drink too much.
그 음식점에 가지 마세요. 정말 불친절해요.
Don’t go that restaurant, their service is terrible.
들어오지 마세요.
Do not enter.
그 영화 보지 마세요. 재미없어요.
Don’t watch that movie, it is not funny.
걱정하지 마세요. 다 잘 될 거예요.
Don’t worry, everything will be fine.
유진 씨, 울지 마세요.
Don’t cry, Yujin.
문에 기대지 마세요.
Don’t lean on door.

You can listen to the pronunciation here.