Basic Sentences Explained:
나의 이름은 론다입니다. (Ne eerum un Ronda eebneeda.)– My name is Ronda, just replace your name where I wrote mine, 론다 is Ronda in Korean. 나의 means “my.” 나 means “I” in English, and when you add “의,” to anything, it makes it possessive. 입니다 is one of the many ways to say “is,” “are,” or “am.” This is the formal way to say “is,” and since you don’t know the person yet, you will want to use the formal way. 은 (un) is an article. This article is used after the subject, after time, and sometimes in other places. “My name” (나의 이름) is actually the complete subject of this sentence. There are other articles used for the subject. This is a common one, and the reason it begins with “ㅇ” is because 이름 ends in a consanant. If the subject ended in a vowel, you would want to use “는” which is the counterpart to this article. At times, the “나의” can be replaced by “제” or “네.” Those are other ways of saying “my.” “제” is the most formal.
만나서 반갑습니다. (mannaso bangabsubseeda.) – It is nice to meet you. 만나서 (mannaso) literally means “because I met you,” but the “I” and the “you” are left out. They often leave the pronouns out, and you guess from the context. 만나다 (manada) actually means “meet.” If it has “서” in place of “다,” it means “because.” 반갑다 means “joyful” or “happy.” -습니다 (subneeda) is a formal ending of the verb. If you see or hear “습니다” on the end of a word, they are being formal. Since this is the first time you met this person, you should be formal. Again, when you say “반갑늡니다” (I am happy,” the pronoun, “I” is left out.
이름은 뭐예요? (eerumun mo yeyo?)- What is your name? Again, “your” would be left out, and this could also mean “What is his name?” or “What is her name?” according to the context. 뭐 (mo) means “what.” “예요” (yeyo) is another way to say “is,” “am,” or “are.” Often, in Korean, there is no inflection in their voices, but their voices go up at the end of a question like English questions.
가다, 가요, 갑니다 ( kada, kayo, kabneeda) (all three of these words mean “go” in the present tense. The first one is how you would see it written on the page, and at times hear it that way. The second one is a polite form to say “go,” but not the most polite. The third way is the most polite way to say “go.” There is also a very rude way or a way that you only use with someone very close to you. It is simple “가” (Ka). If you say this, people will think you are rude and want them to go away.
가야한다 (kayahanda) –I must go. Again, “I” is not included in this word or sentence. Any time you see “야한다” on the end of a word, it means “must” or “have to.” When we use words to built a thought in English, often there is a construction to use in Korean.
지금 (jeegum) -now. 지금은…The 은 (un) after 지금 means you are talking about time.
Articles: All articles in Korean are post position articles. In English, our articles are preposition articles. Our articles are “the” and “a,” but they have more that mean something different.
After the subject in Korean, you may find “는,” (nun), “은” (un), “이” (ee), or “가” (ga). 이 and 가 can only be found after the subject. 은 and 는 can be found in other places also. The are just markers to make the meaning of the sentence more clear. In and of themselves, there is no meaning, but they point to the subject. As we go, you will learn more articles pointing to different parts of the sentence. We use word order in English to tell us what part of speech something is, but in Korean, they use these post position articles.
Basic First Conversation:
Person A: 안녕하세요. (anyong haseyo) (hello)
Person B: 안녕하세요. (anyong haseyo) (hello)
Person A: 잘 지내요? (chal chineyo?) (How are you?)
Person B: 네, 잘 지네요. (ne, chal cheeneyo.)
Person A: 이름이 뭐예요? (eerum ee moyeyo?) (What is your name?)
Person B: 내 이름은 김주영이예요. 이름이 뭐예요? (ne eerum ee Kim Joo Young eeyeyo. eerum ee mo yeyo?) (My name is Kim Joo Young, What is your name?)
Person A: 만나서 반갑습니다. 내 이름은 박영히입니다. (manaso bangabsubneeda. Ne eerum un Park Yong Hee eebneeda.) (I am please to meet you. My name is Park Yong Hee.)
Person B: 만나서 반갑습니다. 지금 가야한다. 안녕히 계세요. (manaso bangabsubneeda. jeegum kayahanda. anyonghee gyeseyo.) (I am pleased to meet you. I have to go now. Goodbye to the person staying.)
Person A: 안녕히 가세요. (anyonghee kaseyo.) (Goodbye to the person leaving.)
If you learn this, you have learned your first Korean conversation. If you go to church in Korea, you can use this conversation to talk to the people after church. Koreans don’t expect foreigners to speak Korean, and they study English like crazy over here. However, if you can say a few things in Korean, they are happy. Speaking to them in their language means that you really want to be friends, and many can’t speak English. If you don’t learn Korean, you can’t speak to everyone. If you ask someone who can speak English to translate for you, they will, but they will get tired and won’t do it forever, so it is good to learn a bit of Korean.