Click here for a workbook to go along with this lesson.
The following videos are available to reinforce the concepts taught in this lesson: Sentence Practice, Dictation
This lesson is also available in Русский, Español, Nederlands and Français
Click on the English word to see information and examples of that word in use (you probably won’t be able to understand the grammar within the sentences at this point, but it is good to see as you progress through your learning).
A PDF file neatly presenting these words and extra information can be found here.
You can try to find all of the words from this lesson, and all of the words from every lesson in Unit 1 in a package of twenty five Word Searches.
한식 = Korean food
한식당 = Korean food restaurant
한식은 너무 맛있어요 = Korean food is very delicious
저는 2주 동안 한식을 안 먹었어요 = I didn’t eat Korean food for two weeks
한식은 양식보다 더 매워 = Korean food is spicier than western food
한국에서 사는 것에 있어서 내가 가장 좋아하는 것은 한식을 매일 먹는 것이야 = My favorite part about living in Korea is eating Korean food every day
양식 = western food
한국 사람들은 양식을 보통 안 먹어요 = Korean people usually don’t eat Western food
한식은 양식보다 더 매워 = Korean food is spicier than western food
키 = height
키가 크다 = to be tall
키가 작다 = to be short
Notes: 키 means “height” in Korean, but not the “height” of a building or some other object. It is only used when talking about the height of a person. “크다” means ‘big.’ The adjective for tall is 키가 크다, which just indicates that your height is big.
그 남자가 키가 너무 커요 = That man is very tall
저는 그보다 키가 더 커요 = I am taller than him
별 = star
별자리 = constellation
하늘에 별이 많아요 = There are many stars in the sky
태도 = attitude
좋은 태도 = good attitude
나쁜 태도 = bad attitude
그 학생의 태도가 나빠요 = That student’s attitude is bad
월급 = pay cheque
월급을 받다 = to get paid, to receive pay cheque
월급(을 받는) 날 = the day one gets paid
월급이 오르다 = to get a raise
월급이 깎이다 = to get less money than before (a pay cut)
저는 매월 24일에 월급을 받아요 = I get paid every month on the 24th
도심 = downtown
저의 여자친구는 안산 도심에서 살아요 = My girlfriend lives in the downtown of Ansan
저는 친구들과 도심에서 영화를 봤어요= I saw a movie with friends downtown
2호선은 서울 도심 주위를 돌아요 = Line 2 circles around the downtown of Seoul
시내 = downtown
저는 보통 친구들과 시내에서 놀아요 = I usually play with (meet) my friends downtown
추억 = memory
추억을 쌓다 = to make memories (literally, “for memories to be piled up”)
추억을 만들다 = to make memories
저는 우리 엄마와 추억이 많아요 = I have a lot of memories with my mom
후보자 = candidate
후보자들은 내일까지 와야 돼요 = Candidates have until tomorrow to come
그들은 많은 후보자들 중에서 저를 뽑았어요 = They chose me from many candidates
라면 = instant noodles (ramen)
라면을 끓이다 = to boil/make ramen noodles
라면수프 = the powder that comes in a bag within a bag of ramen (“Ramen soup”)
저는 돈이 없어서 라면만 먹어요 = I only eat ramen because I have no money
주년 = anniversary
Notes: 주년is usually preceded by a number.
내일은 우리의 1주년이에요 = Tomorrow is our one year anniversary
우리 학교가 세워진 지 10주년이에요 = It is the 10th anniversary of our school opening
자세 = body position/posture
Notes: When exercising, the Konglish word “폼” (form) is often used.
이 자세 맞아요? = Is this posture right/correct?
운동할 때 알맞은 자세로 해야 돼요 = When you exercise, you need to do so with the correct posture
평소 = usual
평소보다 = to be comparing something to the usual amount
평소처럼 = as usual
평소에 = usually
저는 평소보다 더 열심히 공부하고 있어요 = I am studying harder than usual
저는 오늘 평소처럼 공부해야 돼요 = I have to study today, as usual
현재 날씨는 평소보다 조금 추워요 = The present/recent weather is colder than normal
옛날 = old days
할아버지와 할아버지 친구는 옛날 이야기를 나눴어요 = Grandpa and his friend shared old stories (with each other)
옛사랑 = old love
그녀는 옛사랑이었어요 = She was an old love
옛길 = old road/path
Example: 우리는 옛길을 따라 걸었어요 = We walked along, following the old road
걱정하다 = to worry
The pronunciation of this word is closer to “걱쩡하다”
~ㄹ/을 까봐 걱정되다 = to do something because one was worried about…). See Lesson 65 for more information.
걱정하지 마세요 = Don’t worry
걱정 마 = Don’t worry
Notes: More commonly used in the passive voice (걱정되다 = to be worried)
In most situations, removing ~하다 from a word and placing “마” after it is unnatural. However, in this case “걱정 마” is very common.
많이 걱정돼요 = Are you very worried?
시험을 잘 못 볼까 봐 걱정돼요 = I’m worried that I won’t do well on the exam
비가 올까 봐 걱정돼요 = I’m worried that it will rain
저는 아이를 잃어버려서 걱정이 되었어요 = I was worried because I lost the baby
그 수술을 받았을 때 저의 엄마는 걱정했어요 = When I got that surgery, my mom was worried
씻다 = to wash
손을 씻다 = to wash one’s hands
Notes: When washing one’s hair, the verb “감다” must be used.
손을 잘 씻고 먹어요 = To wash one’s hands well, and then eat
손을 씻으세요! = Wash your hands!
확인하다 = to confirm, to check
첨부파일을 확인하세요! = See/Check the attached file
시험을 끝내기 전에 답을 확인하세요 = Check your answers before finishing the test
그것을 확인해 봐!! = Try checking that
가격을 확인해보자 = Let’s check the price
모으다 = to gather, to collect
모으다 follows the ㅡ irregular
돈을 모으다 = to save money
우표를 모으다 = to collect stamps
그는 옛날 동전을 모아요 = He collects old coins
이야기하다 = to talk with, to have a conversation
Notes: “이야기” means “conversation, story,” but the verb “이야기하다” means “to have a conversation with/to talk with.” 이야기(하다) is often shortened to 얘기(하다).
저는 어제 여자친구랑 이야기했어요 = I talked with my girlfriend yesterday
저는 그녀랑 개인적으로 얘기하고 싶어요 = I want to talk to her personally
엄마는 저랑 얘기하기 싫은 것 같아요 = It seems that mom doesn’t want to talk with me
그 문제에 대해 담임선생님과 함께 얘기했어요 = I talked about that problem with my homeroom teacher
수집하다 = to collect
The noun form of this word translates to “collection”
실험을 하기 전에 자료를 수집해요 = To collect data before doing an experiment
추천하다 = to recommend
The noun form of this word translates to “recommendation”
추천서 = recommendation letter/reference
좋은 영화를 추천해 주세요 = Recommend a good movie, please!
좁다 = to be narrow
The pronunciation of this word is closer to “좁따”
Notes: Korean people would use the word “좁다” in make cases where English people would use the word “small.” Especially if an apartment or room is small, Korean people would say “방이 좁다.” The direct English translation of “this room is narrow” is unnatural in English.
이 길이 너무 좁아서 저는 못 들어가요 = I can’t go onto this road because it is so narrow
저의 방은 너무 좁아요 = My room is too small/narrow
넓다 = to be wide
The pronunciation of this word is closer to “널따”
Notes: 넓다 means “wide” but Korean people often say “넓다” when in English we would say “big.” Usually when they talk about how ‘big’ a room/house is, they will say that it is very “넓어.” In English, it would be awkward to say “This place is so wide!!”
우리 집은 매우 넓어요 = Our house is very big (wide)
그 차는 넓은 공간을 차지하고 있어요 = That car takes up a lot of room/space
특별하다 = to be special
The pronunciation of this word is closer to “특뼐하다”
그 박물관은 특별해요 = That museum is special
그 식당은 특별하지 않아요 = That restaurant isn’t special
그 사람은 특별한 개성이 있어요 = That person has a special personality
게으르다 = to be lazy
게으르다 follows the 르 irregular
저의 남자 친구는 아주 게을러요 = My boyfriend is very lazy
저의 게으른 남동생은 하루 종일 아무것도 안 해요 = My lazy brother doesn’t do anything all day
편하다 = to be comfortable
마음이 편하다 = to be relaxed/at ease
옷이 편하다 = for clothes to be comfortable
이 소파는 아주 편해요 = This sofa is very comfortable
안락하다 = to be comfortable
The pronunciation of this word is closer to “알라카다”
Notes: Essentially the same meaning as “편하다,” but much less common. 안락하다 would be more related to abstract things like the mood of a place or one’s life, whereas 편하다 would be more related to physical things that you can feel (like a bed being comfortable)
스타벅스의 내부 분위기가 매우 안락해요 = The atmosphere inside Starbucks is very comfortable
Adverbs and Other words:
더 = more
Notes: This can be used to indicate that one does something more with a noun, for example:
저는 밥을 더 먹고 싶어요 = I want to eat more rice
우리는 다음 시간에 더 배울 거예요 = We will learn more next time
It can also be used with an adjective. For example:
그 여자가 더 예뻐요 = That girl is prettier (more pretty)
It can also be used with an adverb. For example:
저는 더 빨리 가고 싶어요 = I want to go faster (more fast)
See below in this lesson for more information.
저는 평소보다 더 공부하고 있어요 = I am studying more than usual
나는 내일 사람 두 명을 더 만날 거야 = I will meet two more people tomorrow
나는 내일 어제보다 사람 두 명을 더 만날 거야 = I will meet two more people than yesterday tomorrow
저는 남동생보다 밥을 더 먹었어요 = I ate more than my brother
저는 어제보다 밥을 더 먹었어요 = I ate more than yesterday
오늘은 어제보다 더 더워 = Today is hotter than yesterday
덜 = less
가장 = the most (superlative)
Notes: Very similar (if not identical) to 제일
나는 그 여자를 가장 좋아해 = I like that girl most (that girl is my favorite)
나는 수학을 가장 좋아해 = I like math most (math is my favorite)
저의 여자 친구는 한국에서 가장 예쁜 여자예요 = My girlfriend is the prettiest girl in Korea
가족은 가장 중요해요 = Family is the most important
제일 = the most (superlative)
Notes: Very similar (if not identical) to 가장
Placed in a sentence with an adverb or adjective to indicate that something is (done) “most.”
For example, with an adjective:
그 여자가 제일 예뻐요 = that girl is the prettiest (the most pretty)
With an adverb:
저는 달리기를 제일 빨리 할 수 있어요 = I can run the fastest (the most fast)
In most cases, it can’t be used without an adjective or adverb. For example:
저는 제일 운동해요 = I exercise most
저는 제일 공부해요 = I study most
These would require the use of some kind of adverb, for example:
저는 제일 잘 운동해요 = I exercise the best
저는 제일 자주 공부해요 = I study most often
However, it can be used without an adjective or adverb in some cases. Most commonly with 좋아하다 and 싫어하다. For example:
저는 그 사람을 제일 싫어해요 = I dislike that person the most
수학은 제가 제일 좋아하는 수업이에요 = Math is my favorite class (the class that I like the most
여러 = many/various
여러 분 = many people (often used to refer to a group of people: 고객 여러 분!)
여러 번 = many/several times
여러 가지 = many types of
Notes: 여러 is an adverb that is placed before nouns to describe them
저는 여러 가지의 단어를 배우고 싶어요 = I want to learn lots of different types of words
옛날에 그리스인들은 여러 가지의 신을 믿었어요 = A long time ago, Greek people believed in a variety of gods
옛 _____ = something old
The pronunciation of this word is closer to “옏”
옛 추억 = old memories
옛 친구 = an old friend
옛 날 = a long time ago (old days)
옛 사랑 = an old love
Notes: Placed before certain nouns to indicate that noun is from a long time ago.
Example: 저는 어제 옛 친구를 만났어요 = I met a friend from a long time ago
For help memorizing these words, try using our Memrise tool.
You might also want to try listening to all of the words on loop with this Vocabulary Practice video.
In this lesson, you will learn how to make comparative and superlative sentences in Korean. Using comparative sentences, you will learn how to make sentences like “I am more beautiful than you” or “he is faster than his brother.” Using superlative sentences, you will learn how to make sentences like “I am the most handsome person in the world.” In addition, we will take an in-depth look at the word 더, which is commonly used in comparative sentences. Let’s get started.
Before we even get into using comparatives, I want to make you familiar with the word 더, meaning “more” in English. The word ‘more’ (in English and Korean) is very commonly used in sentences when comparing things. For example:
I am more handsome than you
In order to understand how 더 is used, let’s first look at sentences where it is not used:
Those are simple sentences without 더. By adding 더 you can indicate that the particular subjects are “more comfortable” or “spicier” than something else. For example:
At this point we haven’t specifically indicated what the subjects are being compared to, but we will get to that later in the lesson. For now, let’s just focus on the use of 더. Below are many more examples:
도심은 더 멀어요 = Downtown is further
이 방은 더 좁아요 = This room is smaller (narrower)
추억은 더 중요해요 = Memories are more important
한식은 더 맛있어요 = Korean food is more delicious
저는 더 특별한 것을 사고 싶어요 = I want to buy something more special
저는 더 넓은 집에서 살고 싶어요 = I want to live in a bigger (wider) house
In all of the examples above, 더 is used with adjectives. It can also be used with verbs to indicate that an action will happen “more.” For example:
저는 밥을 더 먹을 거예요 = I will eat more
저는 더 공부할 거예요 = I will study more
저는 더 기다릴 거예요 = I will wait more (longer)
그 회사는 월급을 더 줘요 = That company gives more of a paycheque
우리는 돈을 더 모을 거예요 = We will collect more money
저는 손을 더 씻을 거예요 = I will wash my hands more
In sentences where 더 is used with verbs, it is common to place an adverb after 더 to indicate the degree in which the action occurs. When used like this, it’s not that the action happens more – but rather that the verb happens more in a way of the adverb. For example:
It is also common to use 조금 before 더 to indicate that something occurs “a little bit more.” For example:
You can also add 더 to sentences with counters in them. For example:
It is common to use the word 좋다 with 더 to indicate that something is “more good.” Of course, we don’t say “more good” in English. Instead, we say “better.” For example:
It is also common to use the word 많다 with 더 to indicate simply that there is more of something. For example:
So far, you have seen how 더 can be used in simple sentences without any specifically identified comparison. It is also possible to indicate what the situation is being compared to. I will discuss this in the next section.
Korean Comparatives – 보다
As you learned in the previous section, you can use 더 in sentences when not making any specific comparison. 더 is often used in sentences when a specific comparison is being made. In English, comparing is really hard and confusing. Look at these examples:
It is hotter than yesterday
It is more beautiful than yesterday
It is smellier than yesterday
In English, depending on the word that you are using to compare, the conjugation is different. I can’t imagine how annoying this would be for an English learner. Luckily, comparatives in Korean are much simpler (or is it more simple?).
In Korean, you can make a specific comparison by attaching the particle ~보다 to the thing that is being compared to. I feel like it is most logical to present sentences using ~보다 in the same order that I presented the sentences using 더. So here we go:
You can use ~보다 to make a specific comparison with adjectives:
Notice here the example “잘생기다” (handsome) is conjugated into the past tense. When conjugating 잘생기다 and 못생기다 it is always more natural to use the past tense conjugation.
You don’t really need 더 in these types of sentences. The use of ~보다 in these types of sentences would also carry this meaning. However, there is no harm in including it.
You can use ~보다 to make a specific comparison with verbs:
You can use adverbs in these sentences to indicate that they occur more as a function of the adverb:
You can compare things in sentences with counters as well. For example:
나는 친구보다 펜이 두 개 더 있어 = I have two more pens than my friend
어제보다 두 명 더 올 거예요 = Two more people will come compared to yesterday
저의 여동생은 지난 주보다 이번 주에 책을 두 권 더 읽었어요 = My sister read two more books this week than she read last week
The words 좋다 and 많다 are often used with ~보다 as well. For example:
Another way you can create the meaning of “better” is by using the adjective 낫다. 낫다 is very much like 좋다, but it is more naturally used when a specified comparison is being made. Therefore, it is common to see 낫다 used in sentences with ~보다. For example:
낫다 is also very commonly used when you are talking about getting better after being sick. You can say things like this:
Although ~보다 is not used in the sentences above, by context the listener assumed that the speaker is referring to the time where he/she had a cold.
Two words that ~보다 is commonly attached to are 평소 and 생각. For example:
덜 – Less
The word “덜” can be used to have the opposite meaning of 더. That is, it can be used to mean “less.” For example:
These sentences are correct, and would be perfectly understood, but it is usually more natural and common to create the opposite sentence and use 더 instead. For example, I would much rather say the following sentences than the two sentences above:
One more quick thing – it is kind of funny/cute slang to pronounce 덜 as 들. I suggest you try it out sometime. Korean people often get a kick out of foreign people speaking in slang-like language. They usually can’t get over the fact that we know Korean, let alone the fact that we know a bit of slang.
Korean Superlatives – 가장/제일
Superlatives, just like comparatives are so much easier in Korean than they are in English. In English, depending on the word you are using, you have to conjugate it differently:
She is the hottest girl
She is the most beautiful girl
She is the smelliest girl
In Korean, instead of mucking (I said “mucking”) around with different forms like in English, all you need to do is add one word: 가장
예쁘다 = pretty
가장 예쁘다 = Prettiest
아름답다 = beautiful
가장 아름답다 = Most beautiful
A synonym of “가장” is “제일,” which is often used in speech.
You can then put these into sentences just like you would normal adjectives:
You can’t really use 가장 with verbs unless there is also an adverb included within the sentence. For example, you can’t say this:
나는 가장 달려 = I run… most?… doesn’t make sense
In these cases, you need to add an adverb to the sentence:
However, you can add 가장 to 좋아하다 (to like) without an adverb to indicate that you ‘like something the most.’ (This is also how you say “my favorite” in Korean).
Note here that in most real situations it is probably more natural [in English and in Korean] to say something like:
I am the fastest runner – instead of – I run the fastest
Math is my favorite subject – instead of – Math is my favorite
To this point, you haven’t learned how to add this extra dimension to your sentences with verbs. This concept is introduced in Lesson 26. That being said, it is essentially the same as making this change to adjectives:
가족은 가장 중요해요 = Family is the most important
가족이 가장 중요한 것이에요 = Family is the most important thing
In order to express a negative superlative, of course, you can use a word that has a negative meaning, for example:
You could technically add ~지 않다 or ~안 to the sentence to make it a negative superlative sentence. For example:
수학은 가장 쉽지 않아요 = Math is the least easy
수학은 제일 쉽지 않아요 = Math is the least easy
However, those sentences would sound much more natural (in English and Korean) if you just used a word with the opposite meaning. For example:
In most of these superlative sentences, it would usually sound much more natural to add “Of all X”. For example:
Of all subjects at school, math is the most difficult
Of all fruit, I dislike apples the most
The grammatical principle needed to add this extra level of complexity to your sentences is introduced in Lesson 33.
Two adverbs that 가장/제일 are often used with are 잘 and 못, which will be talked about in the next lesson.
That’s it for this lesson!
This YouTube video will prompt you to translate English sentences into Korean using the concepts from this lesson.
This YouTube video will prompt you with Korean sentences to dictate using the concepts from this lesson.