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Lesson 68: Only: 유일하다/유일하게

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Vocabulary
Introduction

Only: 유일하다

 

Vocabulary

Nouns:
단골 = regular costumer

Common Usages:
단골고객 = regular customer
단골손님 = regular customer

Examples:
우리가 그 식당 단골이라서 갈 때마다 서비스를 받아요
= We are regular customers of that restaurant, so every time we go, we get free food

저는 그 식당에서 먹는 사람 중에 유일한 단골고객이에요
= Of all people who eat at that restaurant, I am the only regular customer

동물원 = zoo

Examples:
동물원에 돼지가 많았어요 = There was a lot of pigs at the zoo
동물원에 카메라를 갖고 입장해도 돼요? = Am I allowed to enter the zoo with a camera?

저는 서울에서 있는 유일한 동물원에 가서 기린과 사자를 봤어요
= I went to the only zoo in Seoul and saw the giraffes and lions

하지만 펭귄이 있는 곳은 동물원 입구에서 멀다고 하니 아빠와 나는 우선 다른 동물들을 먼저 봤다
= But (because) the place the penguins are was said to be far from the zoo entrance, so Dad and I saw other animals first

토끼 = rabbit

Notes: The first line of a very common children’s song in Korean goes “산토끼 토끼야 어디를 가느냐?”

Common Usages:
산토끼 = wild rabbit

Examples:
토끼는 큰 귀가 있어요 = Rabbits have big ears
토끼가 어두운 숲으로 사라졌어요 = The rabbit disappeared into the dark forest
그 토끼의 서식지가 다 없어졌다니 안됐다 = It is too bad that that rabbit’s habitat disappeared
강아지가 울타리를 뛰어 넘고 토끼를 뒤따라갔어요 = The puppy jumped over the fence and chased after the rabbit

장갑 = gloves

Common Usages:
목장갑 = cotton gloves (usually worn by people when doing manual labor)
고무장갑 = rubber gloves
일회용장갑 = disposable (one-time use) gloves
장갑을 끼다 = to put on gloves

Examples:
날씨가 쌀쌀해서 장갑을 끼고 나갔어요
= The weather is a little bit chilly, so I put gloves on and went out

사람들이 보통 헬스를 할 때 장갑을 끼고 해요
= When people workout (in a gym), they usually wear gloves (put gloves on and do it)

당나귀 = donkey

Examples:
저는 동물원에서 자지 않은 유일한 당나귀를 탔어요
= At the zoo, I rode the only donkey that wasn’t sleeping

당나귀는 말과 비슷하지만 힘이 말처럼 그렇게 세진 않아요
= Donkeys are similar to horses, but they’re not as strong/powerful

독수리 = eagle

Examples:
독수리는 미국 상징 동물입니다 = The eagle is the symbolic animal of America

독수리는 하늘에서 날아다니면서 땅에서 기어 다니는 쥐도 볼 수 있어요 = As eagles fly around in the sky they can also see mice crawling around on the ground

도마뱀 = lizard

제가 동물원에서 유일하게 보고 싶은 것은 도마뱀과 개구리예요
= The only things I want to see at the zoo are snakes and frogs

요즘에는 집에서 도마뱀을 강아지나 고양이처럼 키우는 것이 유행이에요
= These days, it is popular/common/a trend to raise a snake at home (as a pet) like a puppy or a cat

코끼리 = elephant

Examples:
코끼리는 제일 큰 육지에 사는 포유 동물이에요
= The elephant is the largest mammal that lives on land

코끼리가 음식을 코로 잡아서 입에 넣는 것은 신기해요
= It is cool/amazing that elephants grab food with their nose and put it into their mouth

기린 = giraffe

Examples:
기린의 목 길이는 거의 2미터 가까이 돼요
= The length of a giraffe’s neck an almost reach two meters

기린이 무서워 보지만 아주 얌전한 동물이에요
= Giraffes look scary but they are very tame animals

기린의 털 때문에 기린이 노란색 옷을 입은 것 같이 보였다. 나는 기린이 목이 길어서 무서울 줄 알았는데 오히려 귀여웠다.
= Because of their fur, it looked like the giraffes were wearing yellow clothes. Giraffes have long necks, therefore I thought they would be scary, rather, they were cute.

사자 = lion

Examples:
사자는 아프리카 먹이사슬에서 제일 높은 곳에 위치한 동물이에요
= The lion is the animal that is (located at) the top of the food chain in Africa

나는 사자를 보는 게 무서웠지만 어쨌든 우리는 사자가 있는 곳에 도착했다. 하지만 사자는 낮잠을 자고 있었다.
= I was afraid of seeing the lions, but, at any rate, we arrived at the place where the lions were. However, the lions were taking a nap.

개구리 = frog

Common Usages:
우물 안 개구리 = when somebody is the best at something, but only in their area (a big fish in a little pond)

Examples:
개구리가 시냇물에서 천천히 헤엄쳤어요
= The frog swam slowly in the stream (water)

염소 = goat

Common Usages:
흑염소 = black goat

Examples:
그 농장에는 염소 세 마리가 있어요
= There are three goats at/on that farm

어떤 나라는 일반 우유가 아니라 염소 우유를 많이 마셔요
= Some countries drink a lot of goats milk, not regular (cow) milk

상어 = shark

Notes: The song “Baby Shark” got very popular in Korea in 2018. This coincided with me having a baby, which meant this song was playing all the time in my house/car. In Korean, the song goes “아기 상어 뚜루뚜뚜뚜…”

Examples:
제가 바다에서 유일하게 무서운 것은 상어예요 = The only thing I am afraid of in the ocean is sharks

상어는 사람을 무는 이유는 사람을 대부분 물개로 착각하기 때문이에요 = The reason why sharks bite humans is mostly because they mistake them/us for seals

= share, portion

Common Usages:
몫을 챙기다 = to take/get one’s portion

Examples:
저의 몫만 먹었어요 = I only ate my share
자기 몫을 챙겨서 가세요 = Get your portion, and then leave

빗방울 = raindrop

Notes: A 방울 is a counter for a “drop” of something. Before 방울, we have “비,” which means “rain.” In between 비 and 방울 is a사이시옷. For more information on this “ㅅ,” see Lesson 131.

Common Usages:
굵은 빗방울 = heavy rain (where the rain drops are big)

Examples:
내 머리에 빗방울이 떨어지는 것이 느껴져 = I can feel raindrops falling on my head
빗방울이 바람막이에 갑자기 떨어지기 시작했어요 = All of a sudden, raindrops started falling on the windshield

복장 = clothes

Examples:
회사에서 유일하게 입을 수 있는 복장은 정장이에요
= The only thing/clothing that you can wear at work is a suit

내일 회사에서 중요한 회의가 있는 날이라 복장에 특별히 신경을 쓸 거예요
= There is an important meeting tomorrow at the office, so I am going to put care into my clothes (what I wear)

물가 = the prices of an area

Common Usages:
물가상승률 = inflation rate

Examples:
물가가 비싸지자 사람들이 그 도시에 안 가요
= People don’t go to that city because the price of goods is getting expensive

미국 물가가 아주 비싸서 당신을 위해 산 유일한 기념품은 이 목걸이예요
= The price of goods in America is very expensive, so the only souvenir I bought for you is this necklace

Verbs:
바람을 피우다 = to cheat on (one's husband or wife)

Notes: This is obviously two words, but I wanted to include it as a separate entry. I figured it didn’t fit well enough under the heading of “바람” or “피우다,” so I wanted to talk about this one meaning separately.

Examples:
저는 아내한테 바람을 피웠다고 어쩔 수 없이 말했어요
= I had no choice but to tell my wife that I cheated on her

그 여자의 남편이 비서랑 바람을 피운다는 소문이 있어요
= There is a rumor that that woman’s husband is having an affair with his secretary

전송하다 = to transmit, to send over computer

Examples:
저는 그 글을 확인하지 않고 쓰자마자 바로 전송했어요
= I didn’t check the message and just sent it as soon as I wrote it

저는 이메일을 그 회사에서 기한 안에 전송하는 유일한 사람이에요
= I am the only person who sent the email in that company within/by the deadline

합하다 = to combine, to join together, to unite

Common Usages:
힘을 합하다 = to combine powers/efforts/strengths

Examples:
우리는 힘을 다 합해서 일을 마무리했어요
= We put together all of our efforts and finished/wrapped up that job/task

우리가 유일하게 할 수 있는 것은 우리 힘을 다 합하고 해 보는 거예요
= The only thing that we can do is combine our strength/efforts/power together and try

반성하다 = to self-reflect, to remorse

Notes: It’s hard to come up with a one-word translation that fits the meaning of 반성하다. When I do something silly and my wife gets mad at me, once she is ready to forgive me, she will ask me “반성했어?” This translates to something like “did you think about what you did wrong?”

Common Usages:
진심으로 반성하다 = to sincerely self-reflect

Examples:
그 남자가 바람을 피우고 그의 행동에 대해 진심으로 반성했어요
= That man cheated on his wife, and then sincerely thought about (self-reflected) about what he did

한 학생이 친구를 심하게 괴롭혀서 반성하는 의미로 그 친구에게 사과 편지를 썼어요
= A student severely bothered/bullied his friend, and as a way of self-reflecting about what he did wrong, he wrote an apology letter (to his friend)

유지하다 = to maintain, to retain

Notes: One of the funniest text-messages I have ever sent in Korean included the word “유지” and I still remember it to this day. My wife sent me a message to tell me she had finally finished filing her taxes. At this time, we were about to get married, and she only had a few days of work left before she quit. Also, I call her a “bear” because she is cute like a bear. When she sent me the message telling me she finished her taxes, she simply said “세금신고 완료!” (tax reporting – finished!). I hilariously responded with:

세금신고 완료, 근무 완료, 미혼 완료, 베어 상태 유지

It is hard to translate this directly into English, but it would be something like:

Tax reporting – finished, Work – finished, Being single – finished, Being a bear – still ongoing

Examples:
제가 운동하는 유일한 이유는 몸무게를 유지하는 것이에요
= The only reason I exercise is to maintain/keep my weight

허벅지 근육은 균형을 유지하는 데 중요한 역할을 해요
= The muscles of your inner-thigh play an important role in maintaining one’s balance

그 부부가 1년 동안 계속 결혼 생활을 유지할 수 있을지도 몰라요
= I don’t even know if that couple can stay married (continue married life) for one year

모자라다 = to be short of, to be insufficient

Notes: This feels like it should be an adjective, but it is actually a verb.

손이 모자라다 = to not have enough hands (people)

Examples:
돈이 모자라서 그것을 못 사요 = I can’t buy that because I don’t have enough money
혹시 손이 모자라면 알려주세요 = If you need a hand, let me know

Adjectives:
이기적이다 = to be selfish

Examples:

그 아이가 우리 반에서 유일하게 이기적인 학생이에요
= That kid is the only selfish student in our class

친구들이랑 좋은 관계를 유지하고 싶으면 이기적으로 행동해서는 안돼요
= If you want to maintain/continue good relationships with your friends, you should not act selfishly

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

 

Introduction

In this lesson, you will learn about the word 유일하다 which can be used to create the meaning of “only.” In Lesson 12 you learned about the particle ~만 which can also be used to create the meaning of “only.” However, the usages of 유일하다 and ~만 are different, and I will spend this lesson teaching you how to use 유일하다. Let’s get started.

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Only: 유일하다

First and foremost, the word “유일하다” is an adjective. Adjectives (in English and Korean) are commonly placed before nouns to describe them. For example:

코끼리 = elephant
큰 코끼리 = big elephant

토끼 = rabbit
귀여운 토끼 = cute rabbit

Just like other adjectives, 유일하다 can be placed before nouns to describe them. 유일하다 is used to describe that a particular noun is the only/unique/sole noun that will be acted on. This is a little confusing, but let’s break it down.

The particle “~만” is attached to nouns. When ~만 is used, there is no indication that the noun is unique (or sticks out) from any other noun. For example, I could say:

나는 사과만 샀어 = I only bought apples

This sentence is saying that you only bought apples. Implied in the meaning of this sentence is that you didn’t purchase anything else. For example, maybe you bought apples, but you didn’t buy bananas or strawberries.

유일하다 describes nouns. It describes a noun in a way that causes that noun to be unique (or stand out) in some way. “Unique” doesn’t mean that the noun is “strange.” Rather, it means that it is the only noun that possesses some particular quality. For example, I could say:

나는 유일한 사과를 샀어 = I bought the only apple

Implied in the meaning of this sentence is the feeling that this apple is/was the “only” apple there. In a sense, it is “unique” from all other fruits at the store because it was the “only” apple. A common translation for “유일하다” could also be “sole.” For example:

나는 유일한 사과를 샀어 = I bought the sole apple

To make it more clear, it would probably be more natural to indicate that it was the “only” or “sole” apple to be in a place. For example:

나는 그 가게에서 유일한 사과를 샀어 = I bought the sole apple at that store

In practice, 유일하다 is often used in much more complicated sentences. Often times, the noun being described by 유일하다 is also described by another verb using ~는 것.

Let’s review the ~는 것 principle (from Lesson 26). Remember that you can describe a noun using verbs with ~는 것. For example:

저는 먹는 사람이에요 = I am the person who is eating
저는 공부하는 사람이에요 = I am the person who is studying

You also learned that you can add an adjective to these sentences to describe the noun even further. Remember, these adjectives are usually placed after the describing verb. For example:

저는 먹는 행복한 사람이에요 = I am the happy person who is eating
저는 공부하는 똑똑한 사람이에요 = I am the smart person who is studying

I don’t know exactly when you would use those specific sentences, but the grammar within them is important to understanding to how 유일하다 can be used. It is common to use 유일하다 in this same structure – as an adjective to describe a noun that is also being described by a verb.

If we break it down:

먹는 사람 = the person who is eating
먹는 행복한 사람 = the happy person who is eating
먹는 유일한 사람 = the only person who is eating

공부하는 사람 = the person who is studying
공부하는 똑똑한 사람 = the smart person who is studying
공부하는 유일한 사람 = the only person who is studying

These nouns can then be placed in sentences just like any other noun. For example:

저는 아직 먹고 있는 유일한 사람이라서 부끄러워요
= I am shy because I am the only/sole person who is still eating

오늘이 휴일이라서 제가 학교에서 공부하는 유일한 사람이에요
= Today is a holiday, so I am the only/sole person who is studying at school today

Notice how the two people being described by 유일하다 in the above sentences are unique compared to other individuals. The other individuals aren’t explicitly in the sentences, but by context we know that the people are “sole” individuals doing a particular action.

Because of this, it can be common to attach ~만 to a word that would rarely be described by 유일하다. For example:

저는 돈만 가져왔어요 = I only brought money

However, I can’t think of a situation where “유일한 돈” would be appropriate unless you are describing one country’s money as unique compared to another county’s money.

Likewise,

저는 저의 몫만 먹었어요  = I only ate my portion

However, I can’t think of a situation where “유일한 몫” would be appropriate.

Below are many more examples. In the two examples that we discussed previously, the noun being described by 유일하다 (and the other preceding verb) were attached to 이다 in the sentence. However, this noun can be used just like any other noun – and can therefore have other functions in a sentence (like the subject, object or location). For example:

저는 그 가게에서 파는 유일한 장갑을 샀어요
= I bought the only gloves that are sold at that store

제가 먹고 싶은 유일한 음식은 삼겹살입니다
= The only thing I want to eat is 삼겹살

제가 하고 싶은 유일한 것은 밥을 먹는 것이에요
= The only thing I want to do right now is eat

선생님의 말씀을 듣고 있는 유일한 사람은 저에요
= I am the only person who is listening to the teacher

저는 동물원에서 자지 않은 유일한 당나귀를 탔어요
= At the zoo, I rode the only donkey that wasn’t sleeping

제가 결혼하고 싶은 유일한 사람은 저의 여자 친구입니다
= The only person I want to marry is my girlfriend

저는 그 식당에서 먹는 사람 중에 유일한 단골고객이에요
= Of all people who eat at that restaurant, I am the only regular customer

제가 운동하는 유일한 이유는 몸무게를 유지하는 것이에요
= The only reason I exercise is to maintain/keep my weight

저는 이메일을 그 회사에게 기한 안에 전송하는 유일한 사람이에요
= I am the only person who sent the email to that company within/by the deadline

저는 서울에서 있는 유일한 동물원에 가서 기린과 사자를 봤어요
= I went to the only zoo in Seoul and saw the giraffes and lions

미국 물가가 아주 비싸서 당신을 위해 산 유일한 기념품은 이 목걸이예요
= The price of goods in America is very expensive, so the only souvenir I bought for you is this necklace

It is also possible to attach ~게 to 유일하다 and use it as an adverb. In these cases, it is often placed before the describing verb in the sentence. For example:

제가 유일하게 먹고 싶은 음식은 삼겹살입니다
= The only food I want to eat is 삼겹살

제가 유일하게 하고 싶은 것은 밥을 먹는 것이에요
= The only thing I want to do is eat (rice)

제가 유일하게 결혼하고 싶은 사람은 저의 여자 친구입니다
= The only person I want to marry is my girlfriend

So far, you have seen nouns being described by verbs – and using 유일한 (or 유일하게) to add the additional meaning of “only” or “sole” to the sentences. It is also possible to describe a noun with an adjective and to also use 유일하다 to describe it as well. When this is done, it usually sounds strange in Korean to describe the noun using “유일한” and another adjective. For example:

저는 유일한 행복한 사람이에요

It is weird to have two adjectives in that form describing a noun like this. Therefore, it is better to change “유일한” to “유일하게” – which you saw earlier can also be done with verbs. For example:

행복한 사람 = happy person
유일하게 행복한 사람 = the only happy person

예쁜 여자 = pretty girl
유일하게 예쁜 여자 = the only pretty girl

These nouns can be used in sentences just like any other noun. For example:

이 방에서 유일하게 예쁜 여자는 저 여자예요
= The only pretty girl in this room is that girl

제가 바다에서 유일하게 무서운 것은 상어예요
= The only thing I am afraid of in the ocean is sharks

염소가 거기서 유일하게 살 수 있는 동물이에요
= Goats are the only animals that can live there

나는 우리 가족들 중에 유일하게 행복한 사람이야
= I am the only happy person in my family

회사에서 유일하게 입을 수 있는 복장은 정장이에요
= The only thing/clothing that you can wear at work is a suit

그 아이가 우리 반에서 유일하게 이기적인 학생이에요
= That kid is the only selfish student in our class

제가 동물원에서 유일하게 보고 싶은 것은 도마뱀과 개구리예요
= The only things I want to see at the zoo are lizards and frogs

우리가 유일하게 할 수 있는 것은 우리 힘을 다 합하고 해 보는 거예요
= The only thing that we can do is combine our strength/efforts/power together and try

It took me a while to fully grasp this word, but once you understand it, you will realize that it is a very powerful word that you can use to increase the complexity of your sentences.

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