Lesson 38: Because: ~기 때문에

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Vocabulary
Introduction

Because of: 때문
Because/Therefore: ~기 때문에
Past Tense: ~했기 때문에fLess
Future Tense: ~ㄹ 것이기 때문에
Other Uses of 때문

 

 

Vocabulary

Click on the English word to see information and examples of that word in use. You might not be able to understand all of the grammar within the example sentences, but most of the grammar used will be introduced by the end of Unit 2. Use these sentences to give yourself a feel for how each word can be used, and maybe even to expose yourself to the grammar that you will be learning shortly.

A PDF file neatly presenting these words and extra information can be found here.

Nouns:
투자자 = investor

Common Usages:
주식투자자 = stock investor
개미투자자 = a person who only invests a small amount of money on stocks
투자자를 모집하다 = to recruit investors
해외투자자 = foreign investors

Examples:
주식에 투자하는 많은 사람들이 돈을 잃어요 = Many people lose money investing in stocks

투자자가 없기 때문에 우리는 다른 방법으로 할 거예요
= We will do it another way because there are no investors

주식투자자는 항상 세계 금융 상황에 관심을 가져야 해요
= Stock market investors always need to be aware/interested in the global financial situation

주식 = stocks

Common Usages:
주식시장 = stock market
주식을 매매하다 = to buy and sell stocks
주식을 사다 / 매수하다 = to buy stocks
주식을 팔다 / 매도하다 = to sell stocks
세계주식시장 = world stock market
한국주식시장 = Korean stock market
주식이 오르다 = for stock (prices) to go up
주식이 떨어지다 = for stock (prices) to go down

Examples: 제가 산 주식은 좀 비쌌어요 = The stocks I bought were a bit expensive
주식을 많이 샀기 때문에 돈이 없어요 = I don’t have any money because I bought a lot of stocks
주식에 투자하는 많은 사람들이 돈을 잃어요 = Many people lose money investing in stocks
주식투자자는 항상 세계 금융 상황에 관심을 가져야 해요 = Stock market investors always need to be aware/interested in the global financial situation

주식시장 = stock market

Common Usages:
세계주식시장 = world stock market
한국주식시장 = Korean stock market

Examples:
주식시장 때문에 요즘에 스트레스를 많이 받아요
= I am very stressed these days because of the stock market

세계주식시장은 경제 상황에 따라 좋을 수도 있고 나쁠 수도 있어요
= The world stock market can get better or get worse depending on the economic situation

한국주식시장은 작년에 상황이 좋지 않아서 많은 투자자들이 돈을 잃었어요
= Many investors lost money last year because the (situation of the) Korean stock market wasn’t good

교복 = school uniform

Examples:
교복 때문에 아주 더워요 = I’m really hot because of my school uniform
저는 매일 교복 차림으로 학교에 갔어요 = I went to school every day wearing my uniform
학생들이 교복을 입기 때문에 다 똑같은 옷을 입었어요 = All the students wore exactly the same clothes because they wear uniforms

여신 = goddess

Examples:
그 여자가 여신 같기 때문에 남자들은 그녀를 다 좋아해요 = She’s like a goddess, so all the boys like her

저 여학생은 우리대학교에서 가장 유명한 여신이야
= That (female) student is the most popular girl (“goddess”) at our university

이 연예인은 한때 모든 남자들이 여신이라고 생각한 연예인이에요
= At one time, this celebrity was a celebrity that all men thought was a goddess

별명 = nickname

Common Usages:
별명을 짓다 = to nickname (to make/give somebody a nickname)

Examples:
별명 때문에 너의 진짜 이름을 깜빡했어 = I forgot your real name because of your nickname
저는 초등학교 때 많은 별명이 있었어요 = In elementary school, I had a lot of nicknames
슬기는 사람들에게 어울리는 별명을 잘 지어줘요 = Seulgi gives people nicknames that suit them well

기업 = enterprise

Common Usages:
대기업 = big company (like Samsung, LG, Kia, etc…)
중소기업 = small and medium enterprises
기업문화 = “company culture” – the idea of always working late and going to staff dinners in Korea
기업에 입사하다 = to join a company

Examples:
제가 처음부터 그 기업에 투자하지 않았기 때문에 돈을 많이 못 벌어요
= I don’t earn that much money because I didn’t invest in that company from the beginning

많은 사람들이 대기업에 입사하기 위해 열심히 준비해요
= Many people prepare a lot (hard) to enter/get hired by a big company

전세계에는 무수한 수의 기업이 있지만 사람들이 가고 싶은 기업은 한정되어 있어요
= There are countless companies in the world, but there are a limited number of companies that people want to go into

현실 = reality

Common Usages:
현실 세계 = real world
현실적이다 = realistic
현실을 부정하다 = to deny reality
현실을 부인하다 = to deny reality
현실을 외면하다 = to turn one’s head from reality (to put one’s head in the sand)
현실을 직시하다 = to face the reality

Examples:
우울증에 걸린 사람들은 보통 현실을 부인해요 = People who have depression often deny reality

현실을 직시하고 앞으로 나아가는 것은 중요해요
= It is important to face reality and to keep moving forward

엄마가 현실을 그냥 부정할 것 같기 때문에 말을 안 할 거예요
= I’m not going to say anything (to mom) because she’s probably just going to deny the reality

= posture

Notes: When exercising, you can talk about one’s “form” or “posture” using 폼 or 자세.

Common Usages:
폼을 잡다 = to pose
폼이 나다 = to look cool, to look nice

Examples:
폼이 좋네! = Your form is good!

십대 남자아이들은 여자아이들 앞에서 멋진 폼을 잡는 것을 좋아해요
= Teenage boys like to make cool poses in-front of girls

선글라스를 쓰면 멋있어 보이고 폼이 나기 때문에 저는 자주 선글라스를 써요
= When I wear sunglasses, I look cool so I wear them often

제사 = praying to ancestors on a holiday

Notes: 제사 is a tradition in Korea where family members gather and pay respect to ancestors who passed away (usually one’s father or grandfather). Families usually gather and prepare a bunch of food and it is typically performed on the anniversary of the ancestor’s death and the two major Korean holidays추석 and 설날.

Common Usages:
제사상 = the table that the prepared food is placed on during 제사
제사를 지내다  = to do 제사 (지내다 is the verb that is used with 제사)
제사상을 준비하다 = to prepare the table for 제사

Examples:
한국에서는 매년 2번씩 제사를 지내요 = In Korea, 제사 is observed twice every year
우리는 제사 때문에 할아버지 집에 갔어요 = We went to our grandfather’s house because of 제사
추석에 제사상을 준비하기 위해 친척들이 모두 아침 일찍 큰집으로 모여요 = During Chuseok, in order to prepare the table for 제사, family members (relatives) all meet at the “big house” (the house of the oldest son) early in the morning

Verbs:
떨어뜨리다 = to drop

Notes: Words ending in ~아/어지다 are often passive words that have an active ~아/어뜨리다 equivalent. (Note that this is not the grammatical principle ~아/어지다 that gets added to adjectives). For more words like this, you can see Lesson 105.

Words ending in ~아/어지다, just like any passive verb cannot act on an object. Rather, it describes that something occurs – usually without indicating who/what caused the action to occur. For example:

병이 탁자에서 떨어졌다 = The bottle fell from the table

However, words ending in ~아/어뜨리다 have a subject (which is usually a human, but not always) that cause something to happen to an object/person.  For example:

나는 병을 떨어뜨렸다 = I dropped the bottle

Examples:
깜짝 놀라서 들고 있던 접시를 거의 떨어뜨릴 뻔 했어요
= I was very surprised, so I almost dropped the plate that I was holding

저는 어제 핸드폰을 떨어뜨려서 이제 통화가 안돼요
= I dropped my phone yesterday so I can’t talk on the phone now (because it is broken)

유리병을 떨어뜨려서 바닥에 유리조각이 많으므로 걸을 때 조심하세요
= Be careful when you are walking, as I dropped a bottle, so there are lots of glass pieces on the ground

제안하다 = to propose, to suggest

The noun form of this word (“제안”) translates to “a proposal.”

Common Usages:
아이디어를 제안하다 = to propose/suggest an idea
의견을 제안하다 = to propose /suggest an idea/opinion

Examples:
오늘 공원에 가고 싶지 않았기 때문에 저는 다른 것을 제안했어요
= I didn’t want to go to the park today so I suggested something different (a different thing)

오늘 회의에서는 새로운 프로젝트에 대한 의견을 제안해 주세요
= In today’s meeting, please suggest an opinion about the new project

많은 사람들이 좋은 아이디어를 제안했지만 채택된 아이디어는 없었어요
Many people suggested good ideas, but there was no idea that was chosen/selected

투자하다 = to invest

The noun form of this word (“투자”) translates to “an investment.”

Common Usages:
주식 투자를 하다 = to invest in stocks
미래를 위해 투자하다 = to invest for the future

Examples:
투자를 할 때 모아 놓은 돈이 있으면 좋아요
= When you invest, it is good if you have money saved up

학생들이 할 수 있는 가장 큰 미래를 위한 투자는 지금 공부를 열심히 하는 거예요
= The biggest investment students can make for their future is studying hard now

제가 처음부터 그 기업에 투자하지 않았기 때문에 돈을 많이 못 벌어요
= I don’t earn that much money because I didn’t invest in that company from the beginning

부정하다 = to deny

The noun form of this word (“부정”) translates to “denial.”

Common Usages:
현실을 부정하다 = to deny reality
사실을 부정하다 = to deny facts
부정적이다 = negative, pessimistic

Examples:
그 남자는 자기가 한 일을 부정했어요 = That man denied what he did

엄마가 현실을 그냥 부정할 것 같기 때문에 말을 안 할 거예요
= I’m not going to say anything (to mom) because she’s probably just going to deny the reality

경제 상황이 좋지 않을수록 더욱 많은 사람들이 현실을 부정해요
= As the economic situation gets worse and worse, more and more people reject reality

되짚다 = to look back (in the past), to go back

The pronunciation of this word is closer to “되집따”

Common Usages:
기억을 되짚다 = to look back on old memories

Examples:
우리가 과거를 되짚어 볼 것이기 때문에 사진을 가져왔어요
= We are going to be looking back at old times, so I brought some pictures

기억을 되짚어 어젯밤에 일에 대해 생각해 봤지만 기억이 잘 나지 않았어요
= I reviewed my memory of last night’s events, but it’s not coming back to me well

망설이다 = to hesitate

Common Usages:
결정을 망설이다 = to hesitate a decision
말을 망설이다 = to hesitate one’s speech

Examples:
많은 사람들이 어느 대학교에 갈지를 망설여요 = Many people hesitate about which university to go to

하지만 민호는 내가 자기에게 관심이 없다고 생각했기 때문에 망설이고 있었다고 했다.
But, because Minho thought that I would not be interested in him he was hesitating

대학교에 갈지 안 갈지 많이 망설였기 때문에 대학교에 갈 기회를 놓쳤어요
= Because I hesitated a lot about going to university or not, I missed the opportunity to go to university

세수하다 = to clean one’s face

Common Usages:
꼼꼼히 세수하다 = to clean up/freshen up thoroughly

Examples:
세수를 하는 것이 귀찮기 때문에 안 했어요 = I didn’t wash my face because it is annoying
제가 세수를 하지 않았기 때문에 얼굴이 더러워 보여요 = My face looks dirty because I didn’t wash it
꼭 저녁에 잠을 자기 전에 세수를 해야 해요 = Before you go to sleep at night, you must wash your face

세수를 아직 못 했기 때문에 잠깐 화장실에 갈 거예요
= I haven’t washed my face yet, so I’m going to go to the washroom for a second

세수를 꼼꼼히 하지 않으면 얼굴에 여드름이 생길 수도 있어요
= If you don’t wash your face thoroughly, you could have pimples come up

통화하다 = to talk on the phone

Common Usages:
긴급통화 = emergency phone call

Examples:
지금 공부를 하고 있기 때문에 너랑 통화하고 싶지 않아
= I don’t want to talk with you on the phone because I’m studying now

엄마가 전화를 갑자기 끊었어요. 즉 저랑 통화하기 싫어하는 것 같아요
= Mom suddenly hung up the phone. In other words, it seems that she doesn’t want to talk with me (on the phone)

요즘에는 사람들이 컴퓨터로도 통화할 수 있어요
= These days, people can also talk over (using) computers

Passive Verbs:
떨어지다 = to be dropped

Notes: Words ending in ~아/어지다 are often passive words that have an active ~아/어뜨리다 equivalent. For more words like this, you can see Lesson 105.

Words ending in ~아/어지다, just like any passive verb cannot act on an object. Rather, they describe that something occurs – usually without indicating who/what caused the action to occur. For example:

병이 탁자에서 떨어졌다 = The bottle fell from the table

Common Usages:
시험에 떨어지다 = to fail a test
체온이 떨어지다 = for one’s body temperature to drop
인기가 떨어지다 = for the popularity of something to drop
(some sort of item)이 떨어지다 = to run out of something

Examples:
병이 탁자에서 떨어졌다 = The bottle fell from the table
애기는 높은 소파에서 떨어졌어요 = The baby fell from the high sofa
가을에는 낙엽이 많이 떨어져요 = In the fall, a lot of leaves fall to the ground
그녀가 시험에 떨어졌다는 소문을 들었어요 = I heard a rumor that she failed the test

2월이기 때문에 비행기표 가격이 떨어졌어요
= The prices of flights dropped because it is February

우리가 만든 드라마의 시청률이 떨어졌다니 너무 실망스러워요
= I’m very disappointed that the ratings for the drama we made dropped

날개가 위로 움직이면 비행기가 떨어져요
= When/if the wings move up, the plane drops

추운 곳에 오랫동안 있으면 체온이 떨어져요
= If you stay in a cold place for a long time, your body temperature drops

Adjectives:
북적거리다 = to be crowded, to be packed, to be busy

The pronunciation of this word is closer to “북쩍꺼리다”

Common Usages:
사람들로 북적거리다 = to be crowded with people

Examples:
명동은 항상 관광객들로 북적거려요 = Myeong-dong is always packed with tourists

거리가 아주 북적거리기 때문에 우리는 밖에 나가고 싶지 않아요
= We don’t want to go out because the streets are very crowded

북적거리는 곳에 가면 소지품을 잃어버리지 않게 주의해야 해요
= You need to be careful that you don’t lose your personal belongings when you go to a crowded place

귀찮다 = to be annoying

The pronunciation of this word is closer to “귀찬타”

Notes: It’s hard to translate 귀찮다 perfectly to English. It refers to the feeling that one gets when doing something annoying, cumbersome or tedious.

Common Usages:
만사가 귀찮다 = to be annoyed generally at life and to not want to do anything

Examples:
세수를 하는 것이 귀찮기 때문에 안 했어요
= I didn’t wash my face because it is annoying

가끔씩은 밥을 먹는 것도 귀찮을 때가 있어요
= Sometimes even eating (rice) is annoying

자꾸 말을 거는 남동생 때문에 집에 오면 너무 귀찮아요
= It is annoying coming home because of my brother who keeps talking to me

Adverbs and Other Words:
고르게 = evenly, flatly

Notes: The word 고르다 is actually an adjective, but it is very commonly used as an adverb as 고르게.

Common Usages:
고르게 나눠주다 = to divide evenly
고르게 배분하다 = to distribute evenly
고르게 바르다 = to spread evenly (like a lotion or sauce)

Examples:
식빵에 잼을 고르게 발라야 더욱 맛있어요 = Only if you spread jam evenly on bread is it delicious
밥을 고르게 나눠 주지 않으면 애들이 싸워요 = If you don’t divide the food evenly, the kids will fight

애기들에게 과자를 고르게 안 줬기 때문에 많이 받지 못한 애기들은 울었어요
= I didn’t give the candy to the babies evenly, so the babies that didn’t get a lot cried

어제 번 돈을 친구들과 고르게 배분하기 위해 정확하게 계산을 했어요
= In order to distribute the money that we earned yesterday with friends evenly, I calculated it precisely

For help memorizing these words, try using our Memrise tool.

 

Introduction

In the previous lesson, you learned about how to use ~아/어서 to create the meaning of “because” in Korean sentences. There are actually many ways you can create the meaning of ‘because’ in Korean – the most common of those being by connecting two clauses with ~아/어서.

In this lesson however, you will learn another very common way to say “because” in Korean, which is pretty much interchangeable with ~아/어서. Let’s get started.

 

 

Because of: 때문

By placing ‘때문’ after a noun, you can create the meaning of “because of (that noun).” For example:

일 때문에 = Because of work
남자 친구 때문에 = Because of (my) boyfriend

The rest of the clause will indicate some event/action that occurred as a result of the noun preceding 때문에. For example:

일 때문에 나는 너를 못 만날 것 같아
= Because of work, I probably won’t be able to meet you

남자 친구 때문에 새로운 남자를 못 만나
= Because of my boyfriend, I can’t meet another(/new) man

Notice that this is not the same as adding ~아/어서 to 이다, which you learned about in the previous lesson. For example, these constructions:

일이라서… = Because it is work
남자 친구라서… Because he is my boyfriend

When these constructions are created ~아/어서 is added to 이다. The inclusion of 이다 in these constructions/sentences means that their meanings/translations will have the word am/is/are. When using 때문에 you are simply saying “because of that noun” and are not mentioning the word “to be.” For example, notice the difference between these two sentences

남자 친구 때문에 새로운 남자를 못 만나
= Because of my boyfriend, I can’t meet another(/new) man

남자 친구라서 새로운 남자를 못 만나
= Because he is my boyfriend, I can’t meet another(/new) man
(I can’t think of any situation where this sentence in English or Korean would be appropriate)

That being said, sometimes this difference is irrelevant. Notice how both of these sentences effectively have the same meaning:

우리는 제사 때문에 할아버지 집에 갔어요
= We went to our grandfather’s house because of 제사

우리는 제사라서 할아버지 집에 갔어요
= We went to our grandfather’s house because it is 제사

Many other examples:

별명 때문에 너의 진짜 이름을 깜빡했어
= I forgot your real name because of your nickname

등록금 때문에 저는 그 대학교에 못 가요
= I won’t be able to go to university because of the admission/registration fees

교복 때문에 아주 더워요
= I’m really hot because of my school uniform

주식시장 때문에 요즘에 스트레스를 많이 받아요
= I am very stressed these days because of the stock market

 

 

Because/Therefore: ~때문에

It is also possible to place an entire clause before 때문에 instead of just a noun to indicate that some event/action occurred as a result of the clause preceding 때문에. The clause before 때문에 must be in the form of a noun, and this is done by adding ~기 to the stem of the word immediately preceding 때문에. For example:

저는 배고프기 때문에 밥을 먹고 싶어요 = I want to eat because I am hungry

Note that this is identical to adding ~아/어서 to the same word (which you learned about in the previous lesson). For example:

저는 배고파서 밥을 먹고 싶어요 = I want to eat because I am hungry

Just like ~아/어서, you can add ~기 때문에 to verbs, adjectives and 이다. Below are many examples:

저는 행복하기 때문에 죽고 싶지 않아요
= I don’t want to die because I am happy

지금 공부를 하고 있기 때문에 너랑 통화하고 싶지 않아
= I don’t want to talk with you on the phone because I’m studying now

투자자가 없기 때문에 우리는 다른 방법으로 할 거예요
= We will do it another way because there are no investors

무릎이 아프기 때문에 저는 걸어가기 싫어요
= I don’t want to walk because my knee is sore

이 셔츠에 가격표가 없기 때문에 얼마인지 몰라요
= I don’t know how much this shirt costs because there is no price tag

학생들이 교복을 입기 때문에 다 똑같은 옷을 입었어요
= All the students wore exactly the same clothes because they wear uniforms

내가 남자이기 때문에 그런 영화를 좋아해
= I like those kinds of movies because I am a man

입구가 멀기 때문에 다른 곳으로 갈 거예요
= I’m going to go to another place because the entrance is too far

그 여자가 여신 같기 때문에 남자들은 그녀를 다 좋아해요
= She’s like a goddess, so all the boys like her

거리가 아주 북적거리기 때문에 우리는 밖에 나가고 싶지 않아요
= We don’t want to go out because the streets are very crowded

세수를 하는 것이 귀찮기 때문에 안 했어요
= I didn’t wash my face because it is annoying

2월이기 때문에 비행기표 가격이 떨어졌어요
= The prices of flights dropped because it is February

엄마가 현실을 그냥 부정할 것 같기 때문에 말을 안 할 거예요
= I’m not going to say anything (to mom) because she’s probably just going to deny the reality

Let’s look at how this can be added to clauses conjugated in the past and future tenses.

 

 

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Past Tense: ~했기 때문에

When connecting two clauses with ~아/어서, you should always remember that you do not conjugate the verb/adjective that ~아/어서 is being added to in the past tense. For example, you should never do this:

내가 밥을 벌써 먹었어서 지금 먹고 싶지 않아

Instead, you know that you should say this

내가 밥을 벌써 먹어서 지금 먹고 싶지 않아 = Because I already ate, I don’t want to eat now

However, the clause before ~기 때문에 can be conjugated to the past tense. In these cases, ~기 should be added directly to the addition of ~았/었. For example:

내가 밥을 벌써 먹었기 때문에 지금 먹고 싶지 않아
= Because I already ate, I don’t want to eat now

Many more examples:

저는 시험을 못 봤기 때문에 대학교에 못 가요
= Because I did bad on the test, I won’t be able to go to university

주식을 많이 샀기 때문에 돈이 없어요
= I don’t have any money because I bought a lot of stocks

대학교에 갈지 안 갈지 많이 망설였기 때문에 대학교에 갈 기회를 놓쳤어요
= Because I hesitated a lot about going to university or not, I missed the opportunity to go to university

제가 처음부터 그 기업에 투자하지 않았기 때문에 돈을 많이 못 벌어요
= I don’t earn that much money because I didn’t invest in that company from the beginning

애기들에게 과자를 고르게 안 줬기 때문에 많이 받지 못한 애기들은 울었어요
= I didn’t give the candy to the babies evenly, so the babies that didn’t get a lot cried

세수를 아직 못 했기 때문에 잠깐 화장실에 갈 거예요
= I haven’t washed my face yet, so I’m going to go to the washroom for a second

오늘 공원에 가고 싶지 않았기 때문에 저는 다른 것을 제안했어요
= I didn’t want to go to the park today so I suggested something different (a different thing)

핸드폰이 없었기 때문에 연락하지 못했어요
= Because I didn’t have my phone, I couldn’t contact you

Now let’s look at how you can add ~기 때문에 to the future tense.

 

 

 

 Future Tense: ~것이기 때문에

As you know, you can conjugate a word into the future by connecting ~ㄹ/을 것이다 to it. For example:

내가 나중에 먹을 것이다 = I will eat later

Adding ~기 때문에 to a word conjugated in the future tense is simply a matter of attaching ~기 때문에 to the 이다 at the end of this future tense conjugation. For example:

내가 나중에 먹을 것이기 때문에 지금 먹고 싶지 않아
= Because I am going to eat later, I don’t want to eat now
Notice how there is a noun () followed by 이다 followed by ~기 때문에

More examples:

Also notice how can be shortened to . In these cases, “” can merge with “” and you can see the construction ~ㄹ/을 거기 때문에.

나는 내년에 대학교에 갈 것이기 때문에 지금 열심히 공부하고 있어
= Because I will be going to university next year, I am studying hard now

그녀가 그 셔츠가 거기에 없는 것을 깨닫지 못할 거기 때문에 저는 그냥 가져갈 거예요
= She won’t notice that shirt is gone (not here) so I’m just going to take it

우리가 과거를 되짚어 볼 것이기 때문에 사진을 가져왔어요
= We are going to be looking back at old times, so I brought some pictures

 

 

 

Other Uses of 때문

In Lesson 23, you learned that the meaning of the word ‘그렇다’ is close to the meaning of ‘like that.’ By adding ~아/어서 to 그렇다 you can create “그렇기 때문에.” The common translation for “그렇기 때문에” is “therefore” or “because of that.” For example:

Person 1: 요즘에 사람들은 그 제품을 안 사요 = These days, people aren’t buying that product
Person 2: 네, 그렇기 때문에 그 회사의 주식이 떨어지고 있어요 = Yes, because of that, that company’s stocks are falling

Another good usage of the word 때문 is putting it at the end of a sentence as a noun. If I were to write this:

사람들이 너무 많이 있었기 때문…

You would think that would mean “because there were too many people…”… but that is an incomplete sentence because you cannot end a sentence with a noun like that.

Instead, you must add 이다 to 때문 to make it a full sentence. For example:

사람들이 너무 많이 있었기 때문이야 = Because there were too many people

The best part about that sentence (and this is where this lesson starts to get really hard/confusing) is that “때문” turns into a noun of “[because there were too many people].” I put that “noun” into [brackets] because I’m going to show you what you can do with it. Look at the following example:

내가 방에 들어가지 않은 이유 = translates to “the reason I didn’t go in the room”

Because “이유” is a noun (being described by 내가 방에 들어가지 않은) we can make this the subject of our sentence:

내가 방에 들어가지 않은 이유는 = The reason I didn’t go into the room…

Now if I wanted to say what the reason is, I would need to say:

The reason I didn’t go into the room is …:

내가 방에 들어가지 않은 이유는 ______ 이다
(Notice that I purposely colored the words “is” and “이다” red)

What could I put in the place of that blank? I need to put a noun in there. How about the noun we made before:  “[because there were too many people]”:

The reason I didn’t go into the room is [because there were too many people].

In Korean:

내가 방에 들어가지 않은 이유는 [사람들이 너무 많이 있었기 때문]이야

Without the brackets:
내가 방에 들어가지 않은 이유는 사람들이 너무 많이 있었기 때문이야
= The reason I didn’t go into the room is because there is too many people

Which would make more sense if it said:
The reason I didn’t go into the room is because there were too many people.
To fix this, we need to change 이다 from the present tense to the past tense:

내가 방에 들어가지 않은 이유는 사람들이 너무 많이 있었기 때문이었어
= The reason I didn’t go into the room was because there were too many people

More examples:

내가 한국에 간 이유는 한국어를 배우고 싶기 때문이었어
= The reason I went to Korea was because I wanted to learn Korean

내가 여기서 일하고 싶은 이유는 새로운 경험을 하고 싶기 때문이야
= The reason I want to work here is because I want to have a new experience

All of which are technically the same as these:

사람들이 너무 많이 있어서 나는 방에 들어가지 않았어
= Because there were too many people, I didn’t go into the room

한국어를 배우고 싶어서 한국에 갔어
= Because I wanted to learn Korean, I went to Korea

새로운 경험을 하고 싶어서 여기서 일하고 싶어
= Because I want to have a new experience, I want to work here

You might be comfortable using ~기 때문에 in sentences by now, but you are probably still a little bit confused about how to use “~하는 이유는 ____~기 때문이다” right now. Don’t worry about that. When you become more and more comfortable not only with 때문에 but also with Korean grammar in general, using sentences like that will become more and more natural. In the meantime, keep studying and get ready for our next lesson!

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