[Grammar] -으러/-으려고 and 으려고 하다


-(으)러 and -(으)려고  occurs after verbs(not adjective); they mean ‘purpose’ or ‘in order to~’. Although they have the same meaning, there is a difference.  -(으)러 can only be with 가다/오다/다니다(go/come/go frequent).  If you want to use other verbs, you should use ‘-(으)려고’.  However -(으)려고 can’t be used with suggestive and imperative(order) sentence.  I made a table to show you the difference between -(으)러 and -(으)려고.

And -(으)려고 can be with 하다 : -(으)려고 하다 it means ‘be about to do’.

only with 가다,오다, 다니다
statement, question, suggestive, command sentences
with all verb,
-으려고 하다
can’t use with suggestive, command sentences


verbs(consonant ending)
먹으러(으려고), 읽으러(으려고), 받으러(으려고), 찾으러(으려고)
vebs(vowel ending or ㄹending)
만나러(려고), 마시러(려고),  배우러(려고), 만들러(려고),

You can also put a destination into this phrase, like

-(으)러/-(으)려고   —에   verb

Let’s practice with some sentences.

먹으러 식당에 가요.
I am going to a restaurant to eat.
월급 받으러 회사에 갔어요.
 (somebody) went to the office to get his paycheck.
돈을 찾으러 은행에 왔어요.
 I came to the bank to take out some money. 
친구를 만나러 명동에 가요.
 I am going to Myeongdong to meet my friend.
유진 씨, 술 마시러 호프집에 가요?
Yujin, are you going to a bar to drink?
폴 씨, 우리 같이 한국어 배우러 학원에 가요. 배우려고(X)
 Paul, let’s go to a school to learn Korean together. 
빼려고 헬스장에 다녀요.
 I am going to a gym to reduce my fat.
도자기 만들려고 왔어요.
 I came to make ceramics. 
만나러 다음 달에 서울에 오세요.
Come meet me in Seoul next month.
내년에 결혼하려고 돈을 모아요.
 I am depositing money for my wedding next year. 
지금 나가려고 해요.
 I am about to go out. 

You can also listen to the pronunciation here.


[Grammar] Means, way particle -으로/로

Means, way, method particle -으로/로

-(으)로 is a noun particle which means ‘means’, ‘way’ or ‘method’, it can be translated ‘by’ or ‘with’ in English.  You can use this for transportation, a tool, a way that you use.


 Nouns(consonants ending)
손으로, 핸드폰으로, 인터넷으로,
 Nouns(vowel or ㄹ ending)
차로, 자전거로, 기차로, 지하철로, 이메일로


consonants ending
으로 먹어요.
Eat with hands.
으로 만들었어요.
Made this with flowers.
인터넷으로 찾았어요.
Found this on the Internet. (method)
vowel or
ㄹ ending
자전거 가요.
Go by bicycle.
기차 가요.
Go by train.
지하철로 가요.
Go by subway.
이메일로 보내요.
Send it via Email.

When you say ‘go by foot’, we don’t use this particle. ‘Go by foot’ in Korean is ‘걸어서 가요’, ‘come by foot’ is ‘걸어서 와요.’

You can also listen to the pronunciation here.

[Grammar] 왜? Question words

Question words for Beginners


You can also listen to the pronunciation here.

어느 나라 사람이에요?
Where are you from?
어느 학교 다녀요?
Which school are you attending?
whom, whose
누구 거예요?
Whose thing is it?
누가 안 왔어요?
Who didn’t come?
뭐 해요?
What are you doing?
formal word of ‘뭐’
무엇을 합니까?
What are you doing?
무슨+ N
what kind of N
무슨 음식을 좋아해요?
What food do you like?
무슨 책을 읽어요?
What book do you read?
왜 안 왔어요?
Why didn’t you come?
전화 왜 안 받아요?
Why didn’t you answer my phone?
어디에 가요?
Where are you going?
어디에서 왔어요?
Where are you (coming) from?
언제 한국에 왔어요?
When did you come to Korea?
언제 집에 와요?
When are you coming home?
부산에 어떻게 가요?
How do I get to Busan.
이거 어떻게 해요?
How do I do this?
how many, what
몇 개예요?
How many is this?
몇 월이에요?
What month is it?
what date, how many days
오늘 며칠이에요?
What date is today?
며칠 동안 여행해요?
How many days are you going to travel?


A lot of Koreans write ‘며칠’ as ‘몇일’, but ‘몇일’ is wrong.  If you see anyone(Korean) write it wrong, please correct them!

[Grammar] Verb/adjective endings

Verb/adjective endings


In Korean, there are three types of verb ending for a conversation.

(1) Formal verb ending  -(스)ㅂ니다 : This is used for formal situation such as a report, a test, a meeting, a writing or in the army etc.
e.g) 학교에 갑니다 (go)
집에 옵니다(come)
밥을 먹었습니다(ate)
이 옷을 입을 겁니다(will wear)

You can also listen to the pronunciation here.


(2) Friendly verb ending -아/어/요 : This is used for normal situation such as talking to family, co-workers, classmates or a teacher etc. How ever you use this to a person who is older than you or higher position.
e.g) 학교에 가요(go)
집에 와요(come)
밥 먹었어요(ate)
이 옷 입을 거예요(will wear)

You can also listen to the pronunciation here.


(3) Informal verb ending  -아/어 : This is very similar to the friendly verb ending, but there is no ‘-요’.  You use this to your friends(the same as you) or a person who is younger than you and very close to you.  You will hear this a lot from Korean songs or TV shows.  They use this verb ending because they already know each other, and they are older than others who are listening to them.
e.g) 학교 가(go)
집에 와(come)
밥 먹었어(ate)
이 옷 입을 거야(will wear)

You can also listen to the pronunciation here.



From now on, when you watch a TV show, think about their relationship carefully. Then, you will know the difference. 🙂


[Grammar] Honorific verb particle -(으)시

Honorific verb particle (으)시


When you talk to Koreans, you should consider two things which are (1)”Who are you talking to?” and (2)”Who are you talking about(subject)?”.  In situation (1), you have to consider if you should use “polite ending” or “informal ending”.  On the other hand, in situation (2), you should think about if you should add the honorific verb particles “-(으)시” in the verb or adjective.

Let me show you what is the polite ending and what is honorific ending.

Verb/Adjective Honorific particle Polite ending Actual speech
가다 어요 가세요
보다 ㅂ니다 보십니다
예쁘다 었어요 예쁘셨어요
많다 으시 었습니다 많으셨습니다
읽다 으시 ㄹ 거예요 읽으실 거예요
받다 으시 ㄹ 겁니다 받으실 겁니다

You already know the polite endings which are -요 or -(스)ㅂ니다.  If you don’t know you can review the polite endings here.


Let’s get back to the honorific particle. If you are talking about a person(subject) who is older than you, you should use the honorific particle.

★ How to use?
 Verb/Adjective(vowel ending)        +     시   + verb ending
 Verb/Adjective(consonant ending) + 으시   + verb ending


Honorific particle verb ending(friendly) Actual speech


어요 가셔요(old) 가세요(now)


었어요 오셨어요


ㄹ 거예요 주실거예요
읽다 으시 어요 읽으셔요(old)


받다 으시 었어요


닫다 으시 ㄹ 거예요


You can see there is ★ symbol in the table and it says “old”.  If -(으)시 combine with  어요, it should be -(으)셔요; however, it is in the 50’s or 60’s expression.  We use -(으)세요 these days.

Let’s put the honorific particle and the polite ending together.

-(으)시+어요 => -(으)세요
-(으)시+었어요=> -(으)셨어요
-(으)시+ㄹ 거예요=> -(으)실 거예요

e.g) 아버지가 내일 부산에 가세요.           My father is going to Busan tomorrow.
할머니가 집에 오셨어요.                    My grandmother came home.
할아버지가 선물을 주실 거예요.        My grandfather will give me a gift.
선생님이 책을 읽으세요.                    The teacher is reading a book.
어머니가 편지를 받으셨어요.             My mother got a letter.
아주머니가 창문을 닫으실 거예요.     The lady will close the window.

You can listen to the pronunciation here.

You can also put the formal verb ending like this.


Honorific particle Verb ending(formal) Actual speech

ㅂ니다 가십니다


ㄹ겁니다 주실겁니다
으시 ㅂ니다


으시 었습니다


으시 ㄹ겁니다


Put the honorific particle and the verb ending together!

-(으)시 + ㅂ니다 => -(으)십니다
-(으)시 + 었습니다 => -(으)셨습니다
-(으)시 + ㄹ 겁니다 => -(으)실 겁니다

I hope this is the end of the honorific particle, but unfortunately, there are more. I will post it more in the next one.  If you have any questions, please reply here.



How to say “You” in Korean


I saw a lot of mistakes from my students’ conversations and writings about ‘you in Korean.
I normally tell my students not to use ‘you’ if you are a beginner because ‘you‘ in Korean is very complicated.

Before I tell you how to say ‘you‘ in Korean, I want to tell you how Koreans become friends. Because it is very important for you to understand Koreans’ relationships.

When Koreans meet someone and we want to get to know more(personal relationship) about that person, we normally ask their age. It is very rude in a lot of cultures, but it is very normal thing in Korea.
After we figure it out, then we talk about what we should call each other. If someone is older than me, we don’t call them ‘a friend’, we call them “오빠/언니(if you are a woman)” or “형/누나(if you are a man)“, even if they are “one year” older than me. If someone is the same age as me, then we can call that person ‘a friend’ after we discuss “Let’s be friends!”

I know it is very complicated, but it is the KEY to know when you use ‘You’ in Korean. Now I can tell you the use of ‘You’ in Korean.

If you search for “you” in a dictionary, you can find ‘너’, ‘당신’, ‘그대’ .

1. : You might hear this word in TV shows or songs. We use this to a person who is very close friend(the same age) or a person who is younger than you. You should not use this to your parents, teacher, boss, a person who you meet for the first time or you don’t know well.
If you use this, you also can use casual ending(반말 e.g: 먹어, 해, 가) instead of -요or -습니다.

2. 당신 : We use this to our spouse. Sometimes we also use this to someone you are fighting against 🙂 or in a song or poem that is very formal ‘you’.

3. 그대 : You can hear this only from a song or a poem. This is a poetic word, we don’t use it in normal conversations.

For all those reasons, Koreans usually DROP ‘subject’. For example,

1) A: 오늘 뭐 해요? What are (you) doing today?
B: 영화 봐요. (I) am going to watch a movie.

2) A: 사랑해.   (I) love (you).

As you can see, there are no subjects in this conversation, but we know who is the subject and the object.

So, the good way to avoid making mistakes about ‘You’ is “DO NOT SAY IT” until you totally understand, and use ‘their names‘ or ‘their occupation names like 선생님(teacher), ㅇㅇ 씨(polite name part)’.

[Grammar] -에 particle

-에 is a particle that has many meanings. (It has 16 different meanings!!) In this post, I am going to explain three main uses.

1. Place (existence) : -에 often with 있어요/없어요 and 살아요, it means something/someone is at/on/in a place.
선생님이 학교에 있어요.  The teacher is at the school.
민수 씨가 도서관에 있어요.  Minsu is at the library.
동생이 집에 있어요.  My younger sister(brother) is at home.
오빠가 집에 없어요.  My older brother is not at home.

2. Place (destination) : -에 often with 가요(go)/와요(come)/다녀요(attend), it indicates a destination.
저는 지금 집에 가요. I am going home.
화장실에 가요. I am going to the restroom.
어디에 가요? Where are you going?
미나 씨가 도서관에 가요. Mina is going to the library.
언제 한국에 와요? When are you coming to Korea?
저는 A대학교에 다녀요. I am attending at A University.

3. Time : -에 also means verb/adjective happens at/in/on the time.
내년 한국 가요. I am going to Korea next year.
월요일 친구 집 가요. I am going to my friend’s house on Monday.
아침 학교 있어요. I am at school in the morning.
9시 아침 먹어요. I eat the breakfast at 9 o’clock.
As you can see, you can use two 에 in one sentence which are different meanings.

You should add 에 after most time nouns, but some time nouns don’t need 에 such as 오늘, 어제, 내일, 매일/매주/매달/매년, 언제, 지금.
오늘 백화점에 가요.  I am going to a department store today.
매일 공부해요. I study every day.
지금 뭐 해요? What are you doing now?

And if there are more than two time nouns, you can just add 에 for the last time noun. For example,
오늘 오후 영화를 봐요. I am going to watch a movie this afternoon.
이번 주 월요일 시간이 없어요. I don’t have time this Monday.
다음 주 금요일 4시 만나요. Let’s meet at 4 next Friday.
내년 9월 10일 5시 결혼해요. I am going to get married at 5 o’clock on September 10th next year.

  • Many students get confused by -에(place) and -에서(place), if you want to learn more about this please click here.

[Grammar] Sports 운동


무슨 운동을 좋아해요? What is your favorite sport? Mine is 야구(baseball). Practice these and tell me about your favorite sport! Let’s go A’s!!!!!

You can also listen to the pronunciation here.

table tennis

[Expression] At a restaurant 식당에서

Are you going to eat out tonight at a restaurant? How can you order food in Korea?

You can listen to the pronunciation here.

몇 분이세요?
How many people?
두 명이요.
Two people.
지금 자리가 없어요.
It is full right now.
Do you want to wait?
얼마나 기다려야 돼요?
How long should I wait?
20분쯤 기다려야 돼요. (‘한’is not 1, it means ‘about’)
It will take about 20 minutes.
그럼 기다릴게요.
Then, I will wait.
Excuse me.
반찬 좀 더주세요.
Please give me more side dishes.
김치 좀 더 주실 수 있어요?
Can you give me more Kimchi?
소금 좀 주시겠어요?
Can you give me some salt?
저는 고기를 안 먹어요.
I don’t eat meat.
저는 채식 주의자예요.
I am a vegetarian.
고기 빼고 주세요.
Please don’t put meat in my food.
비빔밥 하나하고 김밥 하나 주세요.
I will have Bibimbap and Kimbap.