Korean Shopping and out to Eat

We are Americans who live in Korea.  Living in Korea, is not hard for Americans.  In this blog, I plan to write and put pictures so that Americans or others who are interested in Korea can see how we live.  We have been here for 12 years, so we have learned a lot that will help people who are interested in coming here.  We will take the readers with us as we move about in Korea and teach them how to do it if they want to do it.  Today, we went grocery shopping and out to eat, so I will tell you about our trip out.

To begin with, we live on the 9th floor of a very tall apartment building.  When we lived in Romania, we lived on the 9th floor for a while, and we thought we were very high up, and the building was 10 floors high, but the 9th floor is nothing here in Korea.  The first year we came here, we lived on the 24th floor of an apartment building in a small town, and we were not at the top.  Koreans build the tallest buildings in the world.  When they need a tall building in a place like Dubai, they bring Korean builders in because they know how to build tall buildings safely.  They have such tall buildings because the peninsula is small.  Everything is crowded in Korea, and the land space is limited.  All the apartment buildings have elevators, and it is common as in our building to have two elevators. One elevator only goes to the even numbered floors, and the other elevator only goes to the odd numbered floors.  As we get on the elevator on our floor, we notice a suit case sitting by the elevator we don’t use.  Someone has stored it there because no one will come out that door, and it isn’t in the way.  In America, we would never just leave a suitcase in the hallway like that, but it is okay in Korea.  No one will take it. If someone took it, they would consider it stealing. Children in America have a saying about things just left around, “Finders keepers, losers weepers,” but that is not a saying here. You just don’t mess with or touch anything that isn’t yours even if the owner is not there.

After we go down our elevator, you can see the signs by the elevators telling you which elevator to take from the bottom floor. You can also see advertisements written in Korean on those signs. Those are advertisements put there by real estate people who handle the apartments. You can see it below the signs telling which elevator to ride as well as under the mirror, two different real estate agents. You also see a sign that says CCTV. That means that you are on closed circuit TV. You are being watched.  These TVs are everywhere in Korea.  About 80% of your life in Korea is on film.  As we walk out, there is an office with windows. The man inside is a guard.  He stays there watching everyone coming and going. He knows what is going on. If you have trouble, you ask him for help. If you park your car wrong, he will call you up and tell you he doesn’t like how you parked your car, and you must come and park it again.  He also helps you with another problem in the parking lot I will discuss in the next paragraph.


If the parking lot is full when you come, but you must park, you may park your car in front of other people’s cars.  If you do this, a couple of things are required.  First, all cars in Korea must have the driver’s telephone number displayed on the dashboard for people to see. If your car is causing trouble where it is, they will call you to move your car.  You just have to be patient.  If you are in bed, you jump up, throw your clothes on, and run out and move your car. Whatever you are doing, you must move because if you don’t, they become irate and mean with you if you don’t move right away.  You have the right to expect them to move right away if they are in front of your car too. You just have to learn to have patience and do it their way.  If you park it the way it is in my picture, then, you must leave your car in neutral and leave the parking brake off. In the picture, you can see a broken brick.  In this particular apartment building, the parking lot slopes, so they will put these broken bricks under their tires to keep the cars from rolling.  If you come out and someone has parked in front of you like that, all you do is move the brick and push the car out of the way.  If it is too hard to push, this is when you can go back and ask the guard to help you push the car.


Now that we are outside, I decided to take a picture for you to show you just how big our apartment building is.  I kept backing off and backing off in the parking lot to get a good shot of it from the bottom to the top, but I just didn’t have the space to back up and get the top and bottom at the same time. This tells you these buildings are huge.  They don’t have earthquakes like in Japan. Japan doesn’t have much land space, but they can’t build buildings like this because of their earth quakes. Here in Korea, the biggest natural problem they have is the typhoon, and it is good to be in one of these buildings during a typhoon.  The wind can’t touch these buildings because they are made of concrete, and they are huge.  If it floods, and you live up on the second or higher floor, you are in business. No water will get in your house.  However, we had to learn something about living on the first floor the hard way because in the last apartment we lived in, we wanted the bottom floor.  The bottom floor is cheaper, and not many people want to live there.  When it floods, the water comes in.  When the snow begins melting, the water comes in.  When it is hot and rainy outside, the apartment on the bottom floor may start getting black mold on the walls.  The drainage system is not good in these apartments, and if you are on the bottom floor, you may have water standing in your bathroom floor. It is normal to spray the bathroom floors in Korea to clean them because they are completely tiled with a drain in the middle of the floor. In fact, if there is no bathtub, often, there is just a shower nozzle coming out of the sink for your to shower with, and you flood your bathroom when you shower.  Water in Korean bathroom floors is normal.  However, when we lived in Romania, living on the bottom floor of the apartment building was good because it meant that you would never have water problems, but here in Korea, living on the bottom floor says you will have too much water that will give you problems.

If you look at the outside of the building, you will see that every apartment has an enclosed balcony.  The balcony is not heated like the rest of the house, but it will be enclosed, and Koreans use these either to grow plants, to hang clothes to dry, or for storage.  In many apartments, they put the washing machine on the balcony.  If you also look on the outside of the building, you will see metal units attached to the outside of the balconies.  Those are air conditioners.  They don’t have central air in Korea, but they do have wall air conditioners, and in some cases, free standing air conditioners that stand in the corner of a room. They call these “air con.”  If you use the whole word, they will have no idea what you are talking about.  Many Koreans have air conditioning, but not everyone uses it because the air conditioners are electric.  If your electric bill gets too high, the electric company doubles it to discourage you from using so much electricity, so many people who have air conditioners will hardly use them even though it can get very steamy here in summer.


As we get in our car to go, you will see that I have an SM3.  An SM3 is a Renault built by Samsung. In the beginning, I didn’t drive a car.  Many Koreans and foreigners use public transportation which is really good here. Public transportation is cheap and efficient in Korea.  In America, only the poorest people ride a bus to work, but it is not that way here. Often, even people who have cars opt out to use public transportation on a daily basis and save their cars just for family outings and things like that because the public transportation here is really good.  There are buses, subways, and taxis.  They are all cheap, and I will do another blog teaching you how to use them.  I used them in the beginning, and they are healthy.  Everyone usually loses weight when they first come to Korea because they are used to going everywhere in a car, but when you are walking to the bus stop or the subway station, you lose weight.  At one point, an American called me and sold me his second hand car. I was thinking like an American back then. The car was cheap, it ran, and it would make our lives more convenient, so I bought it.

It was better to have a car, but I ran into some problems. First, Korea is complicated to get around in with a car.  When we were going with the subways and buses, it was easy to know where to go, but I was always lost with my car. I was always calling my friends, telling them where I was and asking how to get home or to where I was going.  I had to learn that everyone who drives in Korea needs a GPS, a navigation system or they will get lost.  I bought a GPS from the same guy who sold me the car that was in English. That was a mistake.  The way the Koreans spell things in English makes no sense to Americans in the beginning until we get used to it, and I was always confused about where I was with that GPS.  Finally, the transmission went out on that old car, and a Korean friend of mine decided she was going to take over and teach me how it should be done in Korea.  Koreans don’t buy second hand cars. They buy new ones. They also buy the newest technology.  Everything must be up to date in Korea. I told her I wanted something cheap, and she told me she could get me a good new car that was cheap on gas with cheap car payments. I told her I also wanted a small car because there are many very crowded roads in Korea, and a smaller car would be easier to get around in. She wouldn’t even consider showing me a car as small as I wanted because she said they were dangerous.  She took me to a new car show room and insisted I had to buy one of those cars, and she wasn’t going to help me find anything else.  She actually guided me in a good way,  I now have a car that is cheap on gas, has cheap car payments, has a good GPS, and has a backup camera.  A backup camera is a must in Korea. The parking spots are smaller in Korea than in America, and having a backup camera helps you park.  Trying to go into a parking space frontwards at times is just impossible, but you can back up into it with a back up camera easily.  With the new car, I had a special service that I could call whenever I had car trouble. I will explain the car services in another blog, but she guided me right.  Now, we head out shopping in our SM3.


The place we are going is EMart, the Korean WalMart.  It is like a super WalMart with everything available in one store. There are other stores like it in Korea, but usually EMart is the cheapest.  At times, we go to Home Plus or Lotte Mart. They are comparable to EMart, but not quite as cheap, but you can find things there that are not at EMart.  Home Plus has a lot of imports from England because it is actually owned by a British company.  WalMart was in Korea the first year we came, but EMart bought them out.  Like our apartment building, EMart is several stories high.  Instead of a big parking lot, there is a parking garage.  These stores and parking garages are not just in Seoul, but in every small town too.  We end up on the fourth floor of the parking garage because everything before that is crowded. Today is actually Saturday, so the store is more crowded. If we come through the week, there are less cars and less people because everyone is as work through the week, but today, everyone is out.

Like in our apartment building, we must start at the elevators.  I took a picture of something for you to see that is on every elevator in Korea.  They are warning signs not to touch the door of the elevator or lean on the door because you could fall and get hurt.  As we get in the elevator, you will here either nerocabnida or olacabnida in a sweet Korean lady’s voice.  “nerocabnida” means “going down,” and “olacabnida” means “going up.”  We actually begin by going down to the third floor.  There is usually a food court on the third floor of this particular EMart, but they have blocked most of it off.  This is something normal in Korea. Usually, in this food court, you get the choice of Burger King, Baskin Robbins, and any number of traditional Korean restaurants, but they have blocked the Korean restaurants off. I took a picture of the sign explaining it will be open again in June.  We are often disappointed when they do this. They just randomly close off a place you have been going for a long time and enjoying.  The business isn’t bad, but they like to upgrade everything in Korea.  As with my car, they like everything new.  Over at the mall, there was a wonderful restaurant called “Burger Hunter” where they had big luscious burgers and homemade potato chips, and we often when there with our Korean friends, but one day, they blocked it off. We had no idea what would be there or why they would block off such a popular restaurant. When they were done, they replaced it with a corn dog restaurant and a Mexican restaurant.  We go to those restaurants occasionally, but we miss our hamburger restaurant.  As for this food court, they still have Baskin Robbins because Baskin Robbins is very, very popular everywhere, all over Korea. It is is every little town, and sometimes on every street corner.  Koreans love ice cream. We also find Burger King.  Burger King and McDonalds both are popular in Korea.

We decided to eat at Burger King.  When you order at Burger King or McDonalds, you have a choice of how to order now.  You can either talk to the person at the cash register who speaks just enough English to take your order if you can’t speak Korean (However, we have been here for 12 years, so we speak to them in Korean), or you can use one of the new machines. I took a picture of the ordering machines for you, but I haven’t messed with them and never use them to order although many people do.  After you have ordered, they give you a piece of paper with a number, and they have a board where you wait for your number to come up, and then your order is ready.


After you eat, you are expected to recycle.  There is a trash can, but there are also places to dump your ice, put your cups, and put your lids and straws.  Recycling in a really big thing in Korea. This culture thinks that if you are a good person, you will recycle.  My son in law recycles in front of our apartment building once a week. I did it in the beginning when we first came because they encouraged me to do it, bu my son in law has taken over, and I let him. In one of my blogs, I will show you the way they recycle at the apartment buildings.


As we leave the food court, we pass an Italian restaurant.  It has a display case with models of the food. This is normal both in Korea and Japan. When the food court was open, they had models of the food with prices.  You chose which one you wanted, then went to the lady and told her which one you wanted. You paid for it, then she gave you a number, and you sat down and waited, looking at all the Korean restaurants knowing your number would come up on the sign board on top of one of them, and then when your number came up, you would go to that restaurant to get your food. It works the same in all the food courts here, but if there is Burger King, McDonalds, Baskin Robbins, or something like that, they are separate even though they are part of the food court.

We keep walking and go past clothing and jewelry.  As I said, this place is like a super WalMart and has everything. To get to the food because we are grocery shopping, we must go to another floor, so we take a moving sidewalk down.  At the bottom, we see the pharmacy, the “yakgook.” Yakgooks are everywhere, and it is very convenient to get Tylenol, band aids, etc., and to fill prescriptions in Korea. Next to the Yakgook, you also see a place where you can buy glasses, like a super WalMart. However, there is something I took a picture of for you that you can find here that you can’t find in American WalMarts that is very convenient.  If you lose weight or someone gives you clothes that just don’t fit, or just whatever reason, your clothes don’t fit, you can bring them to a place like this. They are all over the place.  They fix your clothes for you, and it is cheaper than buying new clothes.

We go on toward the place where the food is with our shopping cart on the next moving sidewalk.  There are many, many things available.  I took a picture of the candy isle. There is also soda pop. There is a bakery where you can buy all kinds of nice bread, cakes, pizza, muffins, bagels, croissants, etc.  We continue. You can buy already cooked, dried rice in small plastic bowls. When you take these home, all you have to do is open them up, add a few drops of water, cover them again, and put them in the microwave for a little, and you will have a nice hot bowl of rice.  My son in law says he doesn’t even add water to his.  To go along with these, there are several other things that you could just heat and eat to make your busy life easier.  These are just many packages of different dishes. My son especially liked me to buy the curry rice packages for him when he was here. My son in law likes the meat ball packages, the steak packages, etc.  On the opposite side from all this, there is cereal, all kinds like in America. We also recently got toaster pop ups, and that makes my daughter happy.

We go on through the store. We go past the coffee and tea isle where they have all kinds.  We come to the isle where they sell peanut butter, jelly, and even marshmallow cream.  On this isle, we can usually find imported canned goods of all kinds like canned fruit or pinto beans.  We can also find lots and lots of cans of tuna.  We don’t continue to the next isles because we really don’t need what is there, but in case you are wondering, there is sugar, flour, mayonnaise, ketchup, pancake syrup, cooking oil, etc. There is no shortening, but if we want solid shortening, we use butter.  We are headed for the butter and cheese isle where there are all kinds of cheeses from all over the world as well as all kinds of butter.  Next, we pick up milk, and you can get low fat milk. You don’t have to drink it with the fat in it if you don’t want to.

We continue on and see all kinds of exotic things. They have meat prepared for you to buy and cook yourself, but I have no idea what it is. When we get to the regular meat isle, we always look for chicken, pork, and hamburger. These are always much cheaper at EMart than in a place like Home Plus. Chicken is always there. Pork is always there, but hamburger is not always there. Even if hamburger is there, it may be so expensive that we won’t touch it.  If it is Korean beef, they price it off the charts crazy.  If they import it from Australia, it is half the price of Korean beef.  We never buy the Korean beef, but always the Australian beef.  At times, the beef is so expensive, but we still want the kinds of dishes that take ground meat. I have used ground pork in those circumstances. When you make spaghetti and meatballs for example, you really can’t tell a big difference between beef or pork because you have put your condiments, bread crumbs, and eggs in the meatballs and then covered them with spaghetti sauce.  The taste isn’t so different that it isn’t doable.  By the way, you can buy already made spaghetti sauce in jars.  We have tried the Korean brands as well as the imported brands, and we like the imported brands best, but we can’t get them in EMart. We have to go to Home Plus to get them. You can also use the ground pork for taco meat.  You can buy tortillas here as well as long horn or cheddar cheese which means you can make tacos, but usually, they will have to be made with flour tortillas instead of corn because corn tortillas are only found in import shops here, but you can find flour tortillas in EMart and Home Plus. Sometimes at Home Plus, you can buy packages of spices already mixed together for tacos or fajitas. If you want refried beans in your fajitas, you will have to learn to make them from scratch before you come.

After we leave the meat isle, we go on and see all kids of exotic things the Koreans eat.  We took some pictures for you to see.  We don’t know how to fix any of this stuff.  We go on to the vegetable and fruits.  There are all kinds of things to see here.  There are things we would consider normal, and some you may have never seen.  My daughter begins snapping pictures.  In one of the pictures, you can see plantains, cooking bananas.  When we lived in Nigeria, we used to buy these.  You slice them up and fry them in butter and put salt on them, and they are a great snack.  She also takes a picture of chamwee, or as some Koreans say chamway.  These are just two pronunciations we have heard for the same thing. They are small yellow melons.  I have never seen them in any other country, but they are good.  There is also a picture here of the Korean pears. They are big and round unlike American pears. They also keep for weeks on end in the fridge like apples unlike American pears.  They don’t bruise or go bad and soft quickly like American pears, and they are delicious.  There is also a shot of what Americans would call tangerines, but the Koreans call them kyul.  They are extremely popular here. They come from Jeju Island, the Korean Hawaii, an island to the complete south of the peninsula.  Many Koreans go there on vacation, and they bring these back with them.  These little tangerines are everywhere. Everyone has them. Everyone eats them.  When I get on a bus with other professors or with students to go somewhere, someone is always passing out kyul, their small tangerines. After class, often, students bring me a kyul as a gift like they bring apples to American teachers.  Kyul are just extremely, extremely popular in Korea.


Across from the fruits and vegetables, there is a special section.  These are supposed to be fruits and vegetables grown in a healthier way than the regular fruits and vegetables, organic, and they are more expensive.

After we leave the fruits and vegetables, we go past some more Korean delicacies. There is a picture here of ginseng. Koreans love ginseng.  They even put it in candy.  You can get on a bus and smell ginseng products around you, especially if there are old people.  Korea is the ginseng capital of the world.  They believe it is extremely healthy.  They were pushing it on me so much when I first got here, that I looked it up on the internet, and it doesn’t have as many special things about it that the Koreans think it does according to what I read, but it doesn’t stop them from propagating it, believing in it, and using a lot of it.  There are also pictures here of dried fish.  From what I understand,  you are supposed fry these, but I haven’t ever seen it done or know how to do it myself.


We also go past the paper products and the soap isles. We stop and take a picture of the soft plastic bag like laundry soap containers.  You can buy the regular packages here like in the States, but they also make these packages for you to use as refills for your heavy plastic bottle of detergent to make it cheaper.

Next, we head back upstairs on the moving sidewalk.  We check out at the checkout stand.  The store is crowded, so many people are checking out.  At the checkout stand, the woman will say to you “punktul dirilkayo?”  She is asking if you want a shopping bag.  You can answer in English if you say, “yeah” because that means “yes” in Korean.  If you want more than one, you will have to tell her, but she won’t speak English at all, so this is the first place you will probably have no choice but learn the Korean numbers.  In many situations, you won’t need Korean, but to check out, it is much easier if you learn just a little.  As for us, on this day, we don’t need shopping bags because we bought some with us. We have to pay for shopping bags in Korea.  I took a picture of our shopping bags.  The strawberry has a shopping bag inside, and many people carry these with them.  If you look at the blue ones, there are pictures on them.  They show you can shop and use them for trash bags.  You can only buy trash bags at the cash registers in Korea.  They have separate trash bags also that can’t be used as shopping bags, but they can’t be bought at EMart. You can buy bigger trash bags if you go to a local “super” which is what they call a small shop close to your house, but you will have to know how to ask for them.  You say “tsuregi punctul juseyo” which means please give me a trash bag.  They come in all different sizes, and you can either buy one or a package, and in the beginning, you will think they are expensive.  However, you won’t have to pay for a trash service. We actually use our bags that double as shopping bags for our trash bags. You have to buy the bags in your neighborhood or they won’t like it.  Every apartment building has a place where you deposit your trash in these special bags, and it is picked up once a week like the recycling.

Now, we are back in our car and leaving the parking garage. There are so many cars, there is a traffic jam coming out of the parking garage, and we just have to be patient. We are all waiting perched on a slope. It is hard to perch your car on a slope during a traffic jam. One false move, and you have hit another car.  Finally, we get to the bottom, and there is a little booth.  Luckily, at EMart, they don’t charge you to park, although, when they first put these booths in, they did, but now, they just count how long you were there and how many cars have been in the parking lot. However, if you go to a big fancy department store like Hyundai Department Store in Mokdong, you will have to collect every receipt you receive.  You must prove to them you have been shopping and not just using their parking garage for something else because parking can become a really big deal in Korea. If you have bought enough, you will not have to pay to get out of the parking garage at Hyundai Department Store, but if you have not bought enough for the amount of time you have been inside, then you must pay to get out.  I have actually found a way around all this nonsense.  When we go over there, the first temptation is to park on the pink floor of the parking garage because it has flowers, statues, etc., and everything is painted in pink for women to park there, but I don’t.  I go all the way to the bottom of the parking garage, in the deepest basement.  Very few cars go down there, so when it is time to leave, they may not have posted anyone at the gate and won’t have anyone there to charge you anything as you go out if you are lucky.

Our shopping trip is finished, and we head back for our apartment building.  When I get home, I plan on blogging before I forget what we did. On the way home, we talk about all the other things we do or can do in Korea that foreigners will enjoy reading about, so this isn’t the end of my blogging, just one blog.










Oh Thou Fount of Every Blessing (Oh, Fuente de Todas Las Benediciones)

Buenos Dias. (Good Morning.) Como estas en ‘esta manana? (How are you this morning?) A nuestra casa, somos alegres. (At of our house, we are happy.) Dios tiene cuidado de nosotrso. (God takes care of us.) Nos esforsamos hacer que Dios quiere. (We try to do what God wants.) Jesus nos dio mucho consejo bueno acerca de como nos llevamos bien y como vivir vidas nuestras en el Nuevo Testamento, y escuchamos. (Jesus gave us a lot of advice about how to get along and how to live our lives in the New Testament, and we listen.) Si’ gente escuchan a Jesus, vidas de ellas pueden ser mas facil. (If people listen to Jesus, their lives can be easier.) Jesus es el fuente de todas las benediciones porque y si’ escuchamos, podemos ir en Cielo tambien. (Jesus is the fount of every blession because if we listen to him, we can also go to Heaven.)

Oh Thou Fount of Every Blessing

Oh Fuente de Todas Las Benediciones

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Oh thou fount of every blessing,

Oh, fuente de todas benediciones,

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Tune our hearts to sing thy grace.

Afina nuestros corazones a cantar tu gracia.

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Streams of mercy, never ceasing,

Rios de misericoridia, nunca cesando,

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Call for songs of loudest praise.

Llaman para canciones de elogios mas fuertes.

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Teach me ever to adore thee,

Me ensena siempre a te adorar,

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May I still thy goodness prove.

Me deja aunque tu bondad mostro.

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Here’s my heart, oh take and seal it,

Aqui esta’ mi corazon, oh tomalo y sellelo,

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Seal it for thy courts above.

Sellelo para tus cortes sobre,

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Here I raise my Ebenezer

Aqui levanto mi piedra de ayuda

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Hither by thy help I’ve come,

Vine aqui desde tu ayudar,

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And I hope by thy good pleasure

Y espero de tu placer bueno

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Safely to arrive at home.

Llegar acasa en forma segura.

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Jesus sought me when a stranger

Jesus me busco’ cuando fui un extrano

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Wandering from the fold of God,

Vagando desde el regil de Dios.

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He to rescue me from danger,

Queria rescatarme de peligrio,

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Interposed his precious love.

Interpuso su amor precioso.


Explaining Spanish Grammar Using the Love Chapter

I have been explaining Korean grammar using the love chapter, 1 Corinthians 13, and I have wanted to also explain Spanish grammar, but I have been extremely busy lately. However, I know that Spanish, next to English, is one of the most popular languages around. Lots of Americans had high school Spanish, and if an American has a second language, it is probably Spanish. When I was in college, in a Linguistics class I took, the professor showed us a list of the most widely spoken languages on the earth, and of course, English was right up at the top, and right under it was Spanish. I understand that many people are interested in Spanish, so I want to continue explaining Spanish grammar for you with the love chapter.

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Verse 1: Si yo hablase lenguas humanas y angelicas, y no tengo amor, vengo a ser como metal que resuena o cimbalo que retifie.

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Si yo hablase lenguas humanas y angelicas, – “If I spoke human and angelic languages.” “Si” here means “if.” Everyone knows that “si'” means “yes,” but without that accent mark, “si” becomes “if.” “Yo” is the first person singular pronoun, “I.” “Hablase” is a verb tense most of us didn’t study in school. It comes from “hablar,” “to speak.” “Hablase” is the imperfect subjunctive, first person singular form of “hablar.””imperfect subjunctive” is the form that needs to be used with “if” for past tense. If imperfect subjunctive form is used, it often refers to something in the past, but can also refer to unlikely events or possibilities. It is unlikely that we speak the languages of angels, and the verb shows that. “Humanas” and “angelicas” are both adjective forms of “humans” and “angels.” And, most anyone who has studied Spanish at all know that “y” means “and.”

y no tengo amor – “and I don’t have love.” Again, this clause begins with “y” (and). “Tengo” comes from “tener.” It is in first person present tense. Like in English, the present tense means “everyday” or “all the time.” “Tener” is an irregular verb, so not all the verbs are conjugated like this one, but all of first person present tense verbs end with an “o.” A “first person” verb means a verb that has “I” as the subject imbedded into it. With the “no” before it, it is negated, and in English, “no” means “don’t” in this case. “Amor” (love) is the direct object. If you answer the question “what?” you will know what the direct object is. The direct object received the direct action of the verb. “What do I not have?” The answer according to this clause is “amor” (love).

vengo a ser como metal – “I come to be like metal.” “Vengo” is the first person singular present tense of the verb “venir,” to come. I have explained what present tense entails and first person entails above. “A ser” means “to be.” Just “ser” alone can mean “to be,” but this “a” connects “ser” to the verb before it. There is more than one type of verb that can mean “to be” in Spanish, and they are both used in different places with different meanings. This “to be” verb, ser, identifies things. “Ser” talks about something that is permanent or describes a essential conditions of something. In essence, “vengo a ser” basically means “I become.” As a question word, “como” means “how,” but “como” is also used inside the sentence as “like” or “as.” In this case, it is used as “like.” “Como metal” would be called a simile because it is a comparison, a type of figurative language like is used in poetry. The way the person becomes is compared to “metal.”

que resuena – “that echoes.” This is a relative clause. “Que” can be used as the interrogative pronoun “what,” but here, it is used as the relative pronoun “that.” A relative clause is actually an adjective clause, and this relative or adjective clause tells about “metal.” A clause must have a subject and a verb, and the subject here is “it.” “It” is embedded into “resuena” because “resuena” is the third person singular form of “resonar” that means “to echo.” The pronouns that go with third person singular verbs are “he, she, and it” in English. In Spanish, there is no “it,” so “‘el’ (he) or “ella” (she) is used for “it.” In English, we don’t actually put this into a relative clause that is used as an adjective, but we make an adjective out of it and say “echoing metal,” or “resounding brass.”

o cimbalo que retifie – “or a cymbal that clangs.” “O” means “or” in Spanish. The two suggestions here are “metal” or “cimbalo.” “Cimbalo” means “cymbal.” “Que retifie” is another relative clause that is used as an adjective clause telling about “cimbalo.” Again, “que” is a relative pronoun, and in English, it is “that.” “Retifie” is a present tense, third person singular form of “retifir” which means “to make a metal noise,” so “it” or in Spanish “‘el” or “ella” is imbedded into “retifie.”

Photo by Kristina Paukshtite on

If you put this all together, you have: ” If I spoke human and angelic languages, and don’t have love, I become like metal that echoes or a cymbal that clangs.”

Photo by Julius Silver on

Verse 2: Y si’ tuviese profecia, y intendiese todos los misterios y toda ciencia, y si’ tuviese toda la fe, de tal manera que trasladase los montes. y no tengo amor, nada soy.

Photo by Oladimeji Ajegbile on

Y si’ tuviese profecia – “And, if I had prophecy.” Again, “y” means “and,” and “si'” with that accent mark means “if.” “Tuviese” comes from “tener.” “Tuviese” is first person perfect subjunctive tense, a kind of past tense used when you use “if,” for hypothetical situations. “Profecia” means “prophecy.”

y intendiese todos los misterios y toda ciencia – “and understood all mysteries and all knowledge.” “Y,” again, means “and.” “Intendiese” comes from “intender” which means “to understand.” Many of us learned in high school to use “comprender” for “to understand.” However, this is actually a better verb to use. “Intendiese” is first person perfect subjunctive tense, which means it is in a past tense used for hypothetical situations and used with “if.” “misteros” means “mysteries.” Like English, “misteros” has an “s” at the end making it plural. It also has an “o” before that “s” which makes it masculine. This means that it needs “los” and not “las.” “Los” is plural, masculine “the.” The gender and number must match in Spanish. The noun tells you which gender and number you need in the articles like “los,” “las”, “el” and “la” which all mean “the” in English. “todos” means “all.” “Todos” is also connected to “misterios,” so it must be plural and masculine. “Todos” has the “o” to tell you it is masculine, and the “s” to tell you it is plural. After that, we have another “y” meaning “and.” Lastly here, we have “toda ciencia.” “Ciencia” looks like it means “Science,” but it means “knowledge.” “Ciencia” is singular and feminine. The “a” tells you it is feminine. “Ciencia” matches “toda.” “Toda” means “all” and is singular and feminine to match “ciencia.”

si’ tuviese toda la fe – “If I had all the faith.” Again, “si'” with that accent mark over it means “if.” And again, “tuviese” comes from “tener” which means “to have.” “Tuviese” is, again, in first person perfect subjunctive tense which means it is used with “if,” past tense, used in hypothetical situations, and has “I” imbedded into it. “Toda,” again, means “all” and is singular and feminine. “Toda” matches “la fe” which is also in singular feminine. “La” means “the,” and “fe” means “faith.”

de tal manera que trasladase los montes – “of such manner that I moved mountains.” “De,” as I have said in other blogs, means “from” or “of,” and in this case, it means “of.” “Tal” means “such.” “Manera” means “manner.” “Que trasladase los montes” is a relative clause that is used as an adjective clause describing the manner of or kind of faith, “fe.” “Que,” as I have said before, can be used as an interrogative pronoun, but in this case, it is a relative pronoun beginning the relative clause. “Trasladase” comes from “trasladar” which means “to transfer” or “to move.” “Trasladase” is in first person singular perfect subjunctive tense meaning that it is a past tense used with “if” for hypothetical situations. A “first person singular” verb means “I” is imbedded into it. “Los montes” meaning “the mountains” has both a plural, masculine “the” and a plural masculine noun, “montes” (mountains.)

y no tengo amor – “and I don’t have love.” “Y,” again, means “and.” “Tengo” comes from “tener” which means “to have.” “Tengo” is in present tense, first person singular, as I said above. “Tengo” means “I have.” “Amor” (love) is the direct object which means that it receives the direct action of the verb and answers “what?”. “What do I have?” “love.” However, this is a negative verb because “no” comes before “tengo.” “No tengo” means “I don’t have.”

nada soy – “I am nothing.” “Nada” means “nothing.” “Soy” comes from “ser.” “Ser” is the verb that means “to be” that only identifies things that don’t change or conditions about something that don’t change. “Soy” is the first person singular present tense form. That means that “I” is embedded into it and that it is talking about everyday or all the time. If you want to tell someone your name, use this verb to introduce yourself saying “Soy________,” putting your name in the blank. In Spanish, the word order is the opposite of English. In English, “I am” comes first, and then “nothing” comes second. However, in Spanish, here, they have put “nada’ (nothing) first and “soy” (I am) second. You could say “Soy nada” instead of “nada soy.” However, the translator put “nada” first because they considered the fact that you are “nothing” or “nada” is more important that the subject and verb.

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If we put this all together, it becomes:And if I had prophecy and understood all mysteries and knowledge, and had all the faith of such manner that I moved mountains, and I don’t have love, I am nothing.”

Photo by John-Mark Smith on

Here we found some verb tenses that we don’t have in English. For many years, when I have studied my Bible, if there was a verse that was giving me trouble, I looked it up also in other languages I speak because there are different grammatical concepts, different translators, and different word choices. I don’t speak Greek, the original language of the New Testament nor Hebrew, the original language of the Old Testament, but I can check my understanding of scriptures with grammar. The nice part is that I understand grammar in several languages, and I can compare how the different languages have translated something. If I am checking in three different languages, and two of the translations agree, but one doesn’t, then I know if someone made a mistake, and I the meaning from the two that agree. In this case, you can see that several of the verbs here are hypothetical. In English, we don’t get that they are hypothetical. We all know that none of us can understand the languages of angels. We have never even heard any angelic language. They are only hypothetical which means we only guess they exist, but we don’t really know. It causes the imagery here to become stronger. The meaning is that it doesn’t matter what language you speak, even languages that we don’t know exist, and we don’t treat others with love, then we are just a bunch of noise. “Moving mountains” is also hypothetical because we know no one does that, but it is imagery again trying to describe how big of a faith the Apostle Paul is talking about. Not one of us can move a mountain with our faith, so it is faith that is bigger than we have. If we have a faith that is bigger than any person has, but we don’t treat others with love, then we are nothing. The Apostle Paul is really letting us know how important it is to treat others right, with love. Okay, there you have it, the grammar from the first two verses of the love chapter, 1 Corinthians 13. I will add to this as I have time until I finish the chapter.


Explaining Korean Grammar Using the Love Chapter, Part 2

The more Korean grammar I explain to you, I think you can see that it is pretty complicated for English speakers. However, it is not in insurmountable task to learn to understand Korean even though it feels like it sometimes. Even for me, just when I think I am getting a handle on it, someone says something else that completely confuses me. This is a language I really need to know because it is in my family now, so I can’t give up, so I just keep trying. Being able to carry on a conversation with a Korean in Korean and understanding everything any Korean says is two different things. The Koreans who can speak English have come to the conclusion that once you get into English, it is much easier than Korean, but it is even hard for them to bridge the gap because the two languages are so different. Many of them who speak English say they would much rather study the Bible in English than in Korean because English is easier to understand. A lot of that is because we don’t complicate it in ways Korean does and because we are very specific when we speak. Let’s continue forward with Korean grammar of 1 Corinthians 13 because everyone you meet if you go to Korea speaks Korean, only a few speak English even though they try hard.

산을 옮길 만한 맏음 이 거대한 믿음 이예요! (Mountain moving faith is huge faith!) Photo by eberhard grossgasteiger on

Verse 2: 내가 예언 하는 능력이 있어 모든 비밀과 모은 지식을 알고 또 산을 옮길 만한 모든 믿음이 있을지라도 사랑이 없으면 내가 아무 것도 아니요.

내가 예언 하는 능격이 있어 – “I have ability to prophesy, and” 내가 = I, 내 can be either “I” or “my,” but with 가 after it, it becomes the subject, so it is “I.’ 예언 하다 = to prophesy. In Korean, though, this becomes an adjective because 예언 means prophet, and 하다 (to do) has become 하는. It is another one of those nouns that can become a verb by putting 하다 on the end, and you can take those nouns and make them adjectives by taking of the 다 and putting 는. 능력 = ability, and 이 when you already have a subject means that this noun is connected to the verb: 있어 which means “is or are located,” “have or has,” or “to exist.” This is the main verb of this clause, but not of the sentence because it is not at the end of the sentence, and also because it ends in 어. You can think of 어 and a form of “and.”

모든 비밀과 – “all secrets and..” 모든 means “all” or “every.” 비밀 means “secret.” 비밀 is plural because of 모든, but they didn’t use 들 which is the equivalent of “s” in Korean because they consider it irrelevant and usually leave it out. However, because of 머들, you can tell it needs the “s” after it in English. Like I said, we are much more specific in English. (Don’t forget the word 비밀 if you are going to Korea. The password for your account at the bank will be 비밀 번호, and if they give you an apartment with an electronic lock, you will also have a 비밀 번호 for that. 비밀 번호 means “secret number.” ) 과 at the end of the phrase above means “and” that is used between nouns. 과 is used and not 와 because 비밀 ends with a consonant.

모든 지식을 알고 또 – “also know all knowledge and..” Again, 모든 means “all.” 지식 means “knowledge,” and there is 을 after 지식. This 을 means that 모들 비밀 과 모든 지식 is a compound direct object. “Compound” simply means there are two nouns connected by “and: (과), so they share the same verb that makes them into a direct object. they boy receive the action of the verb: 알 which means “know.” there is a “고” after 알 meaning “and” for a verb, and after that, there is a 또. The 또 means “also” or “too.”

산을 – “mountain,” and “mountain” is a direct object because of 을. 을 is used and not 를 because ㄴ on the end of 산 is a consonant.

옮길 만한 – ” to move.” This “to move” in Korean, becomes an adjective because of the 한 that comes from 하다 on the end of it. As I said before, 하다 is a verb meaning “to do,” and you can change that last 다 into 는 in some cases to make the noun attached to the front of this verb into an adjective rather than a verb. When we had 예언 하다 becoming 예언 한, it is the same concept, but a bit different rules because of the 만 in 만한. The whole verb that becomes an adjective in this case is 옮길 만하다. Just 옮 means “move on,” but if you put 길 with it, 길 means “road” or “way.” That 만 means “only.” 옮기 만하다 seems literally mean “to only move on the way,” and then after that, the 하다 becomes 한 and makes it into an adjective. As I said, Korean can be complicated. This adjective is describing 모든 믿음 which means “all faith.” It is the kind of faith that can move mountains (산).

모든 믿음이 있을지라도 – “Even if you have all faith.” As I said before, 모든 means “all.” 맏음 means “faith.” You can ell 맏음 is a noun because it ends with ㅁ. The verb is 믿다 or 밍어요 which both mean the same thing, but are just different levels of speech. 믿 means “faith,” so 믿다 or 믿어요 mean to have faith or to believe. That 이 after 믿음 connects that noun to 있 which means in this case “have.” 있 is the same as 있어요 , 있다, or 있습니다 which all mean one of the following “have, has, is or are located, exist or exists.” I have told you before that 지라도 means “even if,” so “even if you know all secrets and all knowledge and have mountain moving faith” seem to all need to be together here.

사랑 없어먼 재가 아무 것 도 아나요. (If I don’t have love, I am nothing.) Photo by Kristina Paukshtite on

사랑 없어면 – “If there is no love” or “if I or you have not love.” 사랑 means “love.” 없어요 or 없다 or 없습니다 all mean “there is none,” “(pronoun) doesn’t have,” “doesn’t exist.” If you want to make it conditional and add “if,” then you take off the last 다 or 요 or 습니다 and add 면. 면 is a very basic way of saying “if,” and you put it at the end of the clause instead of at the beginning in English. This is the ending of a very long clause that began with the beginning of the sentence, so this sentence is going to begin with “if”

내가 아무 것 도 아니다. = “I am nothing.” Again, 내가 means “I.” 것 means “thing.” 아무것 도 means “nothing.” 아니다 is a negative state of being verb. It must be used with 아무 것 도. Yes, they use double negative in Korean, so literally, this could mean “I am not nothing,” but that means something completely different in English than “I am nothing” which is the meaning conveyed here.

If you put this all together, this is what you have: “If I have the ability to prophesy and know all secrets and knowledge, and even have mountain moving faith, if I have no love, I am nothing.”

이것을 알아요: 사람들이 천사의 말을 모라요. (We know that people don’t know angel’s languages.)Photo by Pixabay on

These verses in this chapter are so complicated that I have decided that unless I get more time or the verses get shorter, I should only do one verse at a time. It is a beautiful chapter, and it also has a lot of complicated grammar. This chapter reads like poetry in many languages because of the type of imagery used to get the ideas across. I am a retired English professor, and I can easily recognize the imagery. In the first verse in this chapter, it talked about being able to speak in the languages of angels, and none of us know the languages of angels, so Paul was really trying to get across the point of being really good with language. In this verse, no one knows all knowledge and secrets except God, so there is an exaggeration. When it talks about “mountain moving faith” it means that faith is really huge! The Apostle Paul wrote this, and he was a very educated and eloquent man. In some ways, you could say he wrote poetry, and it came out beautiful.


오늘 모여 찬송함은 (We Gather in Praise Today)

안녕하세요. Hello 잘지내요? How are you? 오늘은 기쁨에댜하여 노래를 보낼거예요. Today, I will send you a song about joy. 우리는 하나님에서 기쁨 있어요. We are happy because of God. 기도교인이 함께 있어면 행복 해요. If Christians are together, they are happy. 교회에 갈때 우리의 줄거음 이예요. When we go to church, it is our pleasure. 우리 하나님을 함께 찬송 할 수 있어요. We can praise our God together. 우리의 기도교인 친구를 만날 수 있어요. We can meet our Christian friends.

오늘 모여 찬송함은

We Gather in Praise Today

Photo by Luis Quintero on

오늘 모여 찬송 함은 형제자 매 즐거움

We gather in praise today, enjoying the brother hood

Photo by Pixabay on

거룩 하신 주 뜻대로 흔인예식 합니다

We have communion with a holy meaning

신랑 (the groom) Photo by Pixabay on
교회는 예수의 시부 이예요. (The church is the bride of Jesus.) 교회도 예수의 몸 이예요. (The church is also the body of Jesus.) 예수닌 교회의 머리 이예요. (Jesus is the head of the church, his body.)Photo by Rodolfo Quiru00f3s on

신랑 신부 이두 사람 한 몸 되 게 하시고은

The groom and the bride become one body and

Photo by Xiaoyu Chen on

–집안이 하나되고 한뜻 되게 하소셔

Being one in the house means we have become one.


I Stand Amazed (Stau Iumit)

Buna Ziua. Ce mai faci? (How are you?) E timpul din noua pentru mine sa te trimesc un cantec spiritual. (It is time for me to send you a spiritual song again.) Nu conteaza cat de mult de cantecele te trimesc, noi tot trebuie sa fie iumit la Iesu. (It doesn’t matter how many spiritual songs I send you, we all must be amazed at Jesus.) Cat de mult dintre noi avem atat de mult de intelepciunea ca el? (How many of us have as much wisdom as he has?) Cat de mult de noi avem atat de mult de iubirea ca noi vom muri pentru cele alte. (How many of us have so much love that we would die for someone else?) Iesu, cu adevarat, face niste lucru iumitoare! (Jesus, truly, does some amazing things!) Astazi, am gasit un cantec despre cat de iumitoare Iesu e. (Today, I found a song about just how amazing Jesus is.)

I Stand Amazed

Sunt Iumit

Photo by Juhasz Imre on

I stand amazed in the presence of Jesus the Nazarene.

Stau uimit in prezenta de Iesu din Nazaret

Photo by Kaboompics .com on

And wonder how he could love me, a sinner, condemned, unclean.

Si ma gandest cum el poate sa ma iubeste, un pacatosi, condemnat, necurat.

Photo by Luis Quintero on

How marvelous! How wonderful! And my song shall ever be,

Ce minunat! Ce iumitor! Si cantecul meu va fie in vesnicie,

Photo by Kristina Paukshtite on

How marvelous! How wonderful is my savior’s love for me.

Ce minunat! Ce iumitor e iubirea lui mantuitorul meu pentru mine.

Photo by Pixabay on

He took my sins and my sorrows

El a luat pacatele mele si tristele mele

Photo by Alem Su00e1nchez on

He made them his very own

Si le a facut al lui

Photo by Francesco Paggiaro on

He bore the burdens to Calvary

El sa se dus povarele la Calvar

Photo by Mike on

And suffered and died alone.

si a suferit si a murit singur.

Photo by Xiaoyu Chen on

And when with the ransomed in glory

Si cand cu cel rascuparat in gloria

Photo by Pixabay on

His face I at last shall see

Fata lui, in sfarsit, va vedea

Photo by Darwis Alwan on

It will be my joy through the ages

Va fie bucurie mea prin tot timpule

Photo by Luis Quintero on

To sing of his love for me.

Sa cant despre iubirea lui pentru mine.


Above All (Sobre Todas)

Buenos dias. (Hello.) Espero que te sientes bien hoy. (I hope you feel well today.) Hoy estoy piensando acerca de Jesus. (Today, I am thinking about Jesus.) En cierto modo, Jesus fue mas pobre de todos de nosotros. (In a way, Jesus was poorer than all of us.) ‘El no tuvo’ una casa. (He didn’t have a house.) Muchas veces, ‘el enseno’ a la gente afuera como el sermon del munte. (Many times, he taught the people outside like in the sermon on the Mount.) Pienso que si Jesus vivo’ hoy, que la gente piensan acerca de el. (I think, if jesus lived today, what would people think about him?) En dia de hoy, la gente se juzgan con dinero. (Now a days, people judge one another with money.) Si aluna persona no tiene mucho dinero o no tiene una casa grande y muy bonita, la gente piensan que hay una problema. (If some person doesn’t have a lot of money or if they don’t have a big, beautiful house, the people think that there is a problem.) Si tienen una casa grande y fuerte, ellos juzgan a alti gente que no tienene. (If they have a big, pretty house, they judge the other people that don’t have a house like theirs.)Jesus no tuvo’ una casa grande y bonita porque ‘el supo que es mas importante en ‘esta tierra. (Jesus didn’t have a big pretty house because he knew what was more important on this earth.) Como una rosa pisoteado en suelo, ‘el tomo’ el caida para nosotros a entender. (Like a rose tramples on the ground, he took the fall for us to understand.) Si queremos ir en Cielo, temenos que convitirse como ‘el. (If we want to go to Heaven, we have to become like him.) Tenemos que pensar que la gente son mas importante de dinero. (We have to think that people are more important than money.) Jesus vivo’ en el camino. (Jesus lived in the street.) ‘El no tuvo’ una casa. (He didn’t have a house.) Para ‘el, la gente fueron mas importante. (To him, the people were more important.) ‘El viajo’ de un lugar al otro lugar ensenando. (He traveled from one place to another teaching.) ‘El nos enseno’ como amor los otros. (He taught us how to love the others.) ‘El nos dio’ paz entre la gente y entre la gente y Dios. (He gave us peace between people and between people and God.) Pero, si ‘el vive hoy, que pensamos acerca de ‘el. (But, if he lived today, what would we think of him?) No temenos que no temenos una casa, pero si nuestra casa es mas importante de Jesus o mas importante de otros, necesitamos pensamos. (We don’t have to not have a house, but if your house is more important than Jesus or more important than others, we need to think.) Jesus no tuvo’ una casa, pero ahora esta’ sentado al lado de Dios. (Jesus didn’t have a house, but now he is sitting next to God.)

Above All

Sobre Todas

Photo by Binyamin Mellish on

Above all powers,

Sobre todas poderas,

Photo by Mike on

Above all kings,

Sobre todos reyes,

Photo by on

Above all nature,

Sobre todas naturaleza,

Photo by Pixabay on

And all created things,

Y todas las cosas creadas,

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Above all wisdom

Sobre toda sabidura

Photo by Aleksandar Pasaric on

And all the ways of man,

Y todos caminos de homres,

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You were here before the world began.

Fuiste aqui antes tierra empiezo’.

Photo by Pixabay on

Above all kingdoms,

Sobre todos reinos,

Photo by R. Fera on

Above all thrones,

Sobre todos tronos,

Photo by Trace Hudson on

Above all wonders

Sobre todas maravillas

Photo by Sudipta Mondal on

The world has ever known.

El mundo ha conocido una vez,

Photo by Pixabay on

Above all wealth

Sobre todas requezas

Photo by Pixabay on

And treasures of the earth

Y tesoros de la tierra

Photo by Pixabay on

There’s no way to measure

No hay calle para medir

Photo by Engin Akyurt on

What you’re worth.

Lo que vales.

Photo by Pixabay on



Photo by Mike on

Laid behind a stone,

Puesto detras de la Piedra,

Photo by Juhasz Imre on

You lived to die,

Viviste para morir,

Photo by Alem Sánchez on

Rejected and alone,

Rechazado y solo,

Photo by Pixabay on

Like a rose,

Como una rosa,

Photo by samer daboul on

Trampled on the ground,

Pisoteado en el suelo,

Photo by Francesco Paggiaro on

You took the fall

usted tomo’ el caida

Photo by Pixabay on

And thought of me

Y piensaste de mine

Above all.

Sobre todos.


Explaining Korean Grammar Using the Love Chapter

A lot of people seem to be interested in the Korean language, so I decided to continue explaining Korean grammar. I thought I would choose something else from the Bible that most people have heard of, and if you haven’t heard of it, you will like it. It is in the New Testament. It is 1 Corinthians 13. It is a beautiful chapter. It has 13 verses, and lets take it a step at a time. As I did the first verse, I realized the grammar was very complicated, so I will just give you the one verse this time.

사랑 없어면 소음 만 있어요. (Without love, there is only noise.)Photo by Pixabay on

Verse 1: 내가 사람의 방언과 천사의 말을 힐지라도 사랑이 없으면 소리 나는 놋쉬와 꽹과리에 지나지 않숩니다.

내가 – ” I.” 가 is the subject marker, and 내 means the first person singular pronoun, “I.”

사람의 – “people’s.” 사람 can mean only “person” or “people,” but in this case, we know it is “people.” That 의 is the apostrophe “s” that makes 의 a possessive.

방온 과 – “dialects and..” 과 means “and” and so does 와. You use 과 after a consonant (in this case “ㄴ”), and you use 와 after a vowel. Again, 방온 can be singular or plural. They don’t have to add anything in Korean to make it plural even though they have 들 that is equivalent to our “s” that makes our words plural. Even if a word doesn’t have 들, it may still be plural, and this word is.

촌사 의 – “angel’s.” Again, that 의 is the apostrophe “s.” 의 is used instead of 과 because “아” is a vowel. 촌사 means “angel.”

말을 – “language.” bit om other places it can mean “word.” The 을 after it tells you that, 말 is a direct object. That means that it answers the question “what?,” and the verb acts directly on it. 을 is used instead of 를 because 말 ends in a consonant.

할지가도 – “even if ( subject pronoun) do.” The “할” comes from ” 하다” which means “to do.” The rest of it is a phrase meaning “even if.” this is one of those things I didn’t find I a grammar book, but just learned from singing spiritual songs in Korean chapel. “you” is not actually in Korean here, so it could be “I” because the subject of the sentence is “I.” This “do” is the verb for the first clause of the sentence.

사랑이 없으면 – “If there is no love.” 사랑 means “love.” 이 means it is the subject of this clause. 이 is used and not 가 because 사랑 ends in a consonant. 없어요 means several things: “there isn’t,” “aren’t or isn’t here (with any number of subjects),” and “don’t or doesn’t have (with any number of subjects).” With something like 없어요, they usually make you guess the subject. 면 meand “if.” The verb for that particular clause is always attached to the front of 면. If you put 없어요 before “if,” you have to change 없어요 to attach it because 없어요 is a conjugated form. Take the 어요 off. 어요 is the conjugation that puts it into simple present tense, and with a very kind level of speech. You can’t push a consonant right up next to another consonant in Korean unless a word it already spelled that way. That means something has to come between 없 and 면. They use 으 to help the two words glide together.

소리 나는 놋쉬와 – “a sounding brass and..,” with 나는 meaning “I.” 소리 can mean “voice” or “sound.” 놋쉬 means “brass.” 와, again, is “and.”

꽹과리에 지나지 않습니다 “It is nothing more than noise.” 지나지 means “nothing more.” 않습니다 is the negative respectful ending for a verb. You use this ending if you are a student talking to a teacher or someone making an announcement to the public. The 지 just before it means that a negative ending is coming. 않습니다 means it is not. You can use it on other verbs or as a verb alone. For example, If you wanted to say “This is not a book,” say, “이것은 책 않숩니다.” means “It isn’t a book.” That “isn’t” is 않습니다. If it is used on the end of a verb, here is an example: 사랑 하지 않습니다 which means “doesn’t or don’t love.”하지 않습니다 means “doesn’t or don’t do.” I actually have had a lot of trouble figuring out 꽹과리에 means. I have never found a good Korean dictionary, and my daughter who is much better in Korean than I am has never heard this word.꽹리 is actually in the place where “cymbals” should go, but my daughter says “cymbals” in Korean in 상진. Event that word is not in any dictionary I have access to. I keep thinking that 꽹리may be a kind of Korean traditional instrument because they have a lot of traditional instruments that are just like clanging to pans together and just flat noisy.

이새성에 사람들이 존사의 말을 모라요. (On this earth, people don’t know angel’s languages.) Photo by Pixabay on

Basically, this is what we have in the long run with this verse: “Even if I do people’s dialects and angel’s languages, if I don’t love, I am nothing more than a sounding brass and a cymbal.”

I actually began using my Korean Bible when I copied the verse in Korean at the top onto my blog. However, half way through, I was really working on that crazy word: 꽝과리, and I found another translation of the verse online in Korean that had grammar at the end I thought was more useful to you, so the end of the verse is from the online translation. This is what I thought was useful to you: 않습니다. On a day to day basis, most adults won’t have to use this conjugation, but they need to understand it. If you want to understand when kids talk to you in Korean, they will use this. If you want to understand public announcements, they will use this conjugation. Here are some examples of verb levels that will help you:

나는 려기에 있어요. Photo by bruce mars on

The State of Being Verb Used for Location:

I am here. = 나는 여기에 있어요. (Adults will want to use this conjugation most of the time.)

나는 여기에 있다. (This is the conjugation you will see in books, and if you write in Korean, you should use this conjugation.

나는 여기에 있어. (This is called “bang mal.” You only use this conjugation with family members or friends you are very close to. It is extremely informal.)

재가 여기에 있습니다. (Yes, even the formal “I” is different. Students will speak to teachers like this. Children speak to adults like this. Public announcements are made with this. If you don’t know people, but you want to talk to them, you might use this.)



He is not here. = 그는 여기에 없어요 (This is the conjugation you will want to use all the time if you are an adult.)

그는 여기에 없어습니다 (This is the conjugation you will hear from students or children. You will also hear this in public announcements. It is very formal.)

그는 여기에 없어 ( This is “bang mal,” the conjugation people use with family members or others who are very close to them.)

그는 역기에 없다 (This is the conjugation you will read in books. It is also the conjugation you will use if you want to write anything.)


내 이름이 ____________이예요. Photo by fauxels on

The State of Being Verb Used for Identification:

My name is ___________. = 내 이름이__________이예요. (This is the conjugation you will want to use if you are an adult, as long as you aren’t talking to your boss. It is considered kind.)

재 이름이 ______________이습니다. (This is the most formal level of speech. Children use it talking to adults. Students use it with teachers. If you introduce yourself for the first time to a group, it keeps it formal. This form is also used for public announcements.)

나의 이름 이 _________________이다. (This is the form you will see in the books. If you write, you want to use this form. I used 나의 instead of 내, but they mean exactly the same thing, and there is no difference in their level.)

내 이름이 _______________야. (This is bang mal again, the form used with family and people closest to you. If you use it with anyone else, it is considered rude.)



His name isn’t __________________. =그의 이름이 _______________않니예요. (This is the form you should use if you are an adult with everyone. Especially, if you use this form with children as an adult, you will be considered kind.) 그의 이름이 _________________않이야 (This is bang mal again. They would only use this form with their family and close friends. If you use it and don’t know the person very well, you will be considered rude.)

그의 이름이 _________________않숩니다(This is the most formal conjugation. Students use it with teachers. Children use it with adults. It is used in public announcements. If you go to Korea to teach, don’t use it on other adults, and don’t use it on your students. Your students will use it on you.)

그위 이름이 ________________않다. (This is the form that is used in books. If you write something in Korean, they will expect you to use this form.)