We’ve covered basic introductions so far in Korean Corner, but we haven’t spoken about the grammar behind these phrases. Have a peek below:
1. 이에요/예요 (Am/are/is)
Using 이에요/여요 (ee-eh-yoh/yeh-yoh) is a polite informal verb. It’s used in the same way as 니다(ni-dah), but is easier to use. Simply use it after a noun.
Noun that ends in a vowel (a, e, i, o, u) are followed by 예요. Examples include 이름이뭐예요? (E-room-E-mwoh-yeh-yoh) from our first lesson!
Nouns ending with consonants are followed by 이에요. 폴이에요 (Paul-e-eh-oh) is an example that answers the earlier question. This means “I’m Paul”!
2. Topic Markers 은/는 가/이
These designate the topic of a sentence and stress a new topic. Therefore, not every sentence needs one.
Noun ending in a vowel is followed by either 는/가 (noon/gah) such as “I” 저는 (joe-nun)
Noun ending in a consonant is followed by either 은/이. (Oon/E) “I am a teacher” 선생님이에요(sun-seng-nim e-eh-oh) follows this pattern.
Note that subjects can be left out of sentences if they are clear. No need to keep repeating 저는!
3. Question Word 뭐 (mwho), What
Simply add this before a noun to ask what a thing is. Or, as 뭐예요? (mwoh-yeh-yoh) for “what is this?”.
This month is a short but sweet Korean Corner, but it covers some basic principles in grammar! Can you spot them in earlier posts?
Is there anything else you’d like to see?
Next month, we wave goodbye to pronunciation, and go over reading hangul!