Hanja Lesson 5: 一, 二, 三, 四, 五, 六, 七, 八, 九, 十

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In this lesson, you will learn the Hanja characters for the numbers 1 to 10. You will learn how to read, write and recognize 일, 이, 삼, 사, 오, 육, 칠, 팔, 구 and 십.

Numbers in Hanja

I have some bad news.

In this lesson, one of the Hanja characters you will learn is “일.”

You might be thinking to yourself: “Oh! I know the Hanja character for “일.”

You know one of the characters for “일.” Just because you have learned a Hanja character that corresponds to a Korean syllable, does not mean that is the only character that represents that syllable. In fact, one Korean syllable can be represented by many different Hanja characters – each with a different meaning. For example:

日 is pronounced in Korean as “일.” It has the meaning of “day.”
一 is pronounced in Korean as “일.” It has the meaning of “one.”

The same can be said for many other Korean syllables. You do not need to know these characters yet, but I want to present them to you to explain my point further:

子 is pronounced in Korean as “자.” It means “son.” (자식 = children)
者 is pronounced in Korean as “자.” It means “person..” (환자 = patient)
字 is pronounced in Korean as “자.” It means “writing.” (한자 = Hanja)
自is pronounced in Korean as “자.” It means “automatic” or “oneself” (자유 = freedom)

In addition to the above, there are more Hanja characters that can represent “자.” Each with a different meaning.

You can see the same thing with many Korean syllables. For example, 동 can be represented by 洞, 東, 動, 同, etc. All with the same pronunciation in Korean, but each with a different meaning.

When I first learned of this fact, I thought it was terrible because it meant that there were going to be significantly more characters to learn than I originally thought. However, you don’t need to worry because you will be introduced to each character as they become important. For now, just sit back and enjoy the ride.

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= = One
(Korean name:
)

The easiest Hanja character. Takes no effort to learn or reproduce.

Lesson 5 pic1Common Words using this Character:
一부 = a part of something (one part)
제一 = superlative like “가장”

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.

= = Two
(Korean name:
)

Slightly more difficult than 一. But I don’t know if drawing two lines should be thought of as “difficult.”

Lesson 5 pic2

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.

= = Three
(Korean name:
)

Same as above. Draw three lines.

Lesson 5 pic3Common Words using this Character:
三촌 = uncle (your uncle is three steps away from you)
三각형 = triangle (three sided shape)

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.

= = Four
(Korean name:
)

Okay, now we are back to something that is a little bit more difficult. I always remembered this character because the box has four sides.

Lesson 5 pic4Common Words using this Character:
四계절 = four seasons
정四각형 = square
직四각형 = rectangle
四촌 = cousin (your cousin is four steps away from you)

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.

= = Five
(Korean name:
다섯 )

Lesson 5 pic5Common Words using this Character:
五감 = five senses
五각형 = pentagon

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.

= / = Six
(Korean name:
여섯 )

Don’t confuse this character with 大:

Lesson 5 pic6Common Words using this Character:
五六 = five or six

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.

= = Seven
(Korean name:
일곱 )

Lesson 5 pic7

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.

= = Eight
(Korean name:
여덟 )

Lesson 5 pic8Common Words using this Character:
八각형 = octagon
八방미人 = a Jack of all trades (somebody who is good in all directions)

.

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.

= = Nine
(Korean name:
아홉 )

Lesson 5 pic9

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.

= = Ten
(Korean name:
)

Lesson 5 pic10Common Words using this Character:
수十 = dozens of (tens of)

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That’s it for this lesson!

Okay, I got it! Take me to the next lesson! Or,
Click here for a PDF copy of all our Hanja lessons.