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Lesson 90: The meaning of ~잖아(요)

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Vocabulary
Introduction

The meaning of ~잖아(요)

 

 

Vocabulary

Nouns:
야당 = opposition party (in politics)

Examples:
여당이 야당보다 권력이 훨씬 크잖아요
= You should know that the ruling party has more power than the opposition party

야당이 새로운 정책에 동의하게 하기 위해 거짓말을 했어요
= We lied in order to make the opposition (party) agree with the new policy

여당 = ruling party (in politics)

Examples:
대통령의 성공적인 외교능력으로 여당이 더 힘을 얻게 됐어요
= Thanks to the successful diplomacy abilities of the president, the ruling party got more power

여당은 계속되는 정책의 실패로 사람들의 민심을 잃고 있어요
= The ruling party is looking the trust of the people because of their continuing failed policies

이익 = benefit/profit/gain

Common Usages:
순이익 = net profit

Examples:
그렇게 하면 우리에게 이익이 없잖아요
= You should know that if we do it that way we will have no profit/benefit

법의 구멍을 남용해서 이익을 얻는 사람들이 많아요
= There are many people that abuse holes in the law to get benefits

이번 년도 상반기 이익이 벌써 작년 하반기보다 더 좋아요
= The profit of the first half of this year is already better than the second half of last year

눈앞에 놓인 이익만 보고 행동을 하면 더 큰 이익을 놓칠 수도 있어요
= If I only look at the profit right in-front of my eyes, I might miss a bigger profit

수도꼭지 = tap/faucet

Common Usages:
수도꼭지를 잠그다 = to turn the water (from a tap) off

Examples:
수압이 너무 세서 수도꼭지를 잠가 놓으세요
= The water pressure is too strong, so turn off (“lock”) the faucet

수도꼭지 주위에 물이 새기 시작해서 급하게 수리기사님을 불렀어요
= Water started to leak around the faucet, so I quickly called somebody to fix it

식후 = after a meal

Notes: The most common place you will hear 식후 or 식전 is when a doctor or pharmacist tells you when you should take medicine.

Examples:
이 약은 꼭 식후 30분 있다 복용해야 합니다
= You must take this medicine 30 minutes after a meal

식후에 바로 과일을 먹는 습관과 먹자마자 눕는 습관은 몸에 좋지 않아요
= The habit of eating fruit right after a meal and the habit of laying down right after eating aren’t good

식전 = before a meal

Common Usages:
식전빵 = bread before a meal (usually in a restaurant as an appetizer)
식전 음식 = appetizers

Examples:
스파게티가 나오기 전에 식전빵과 수프가 나올 거예요
= Before the spaghetti arrives, bread and soup will be here

식전과 식후에 많은 물을 한꺼번에 마시기 보다는 천천히 나눠서 마시는 게 좋아요
= Instead of drinking a lot of water before and after a meal all at once, it is better to drink it slowly in smaller bits

한숨 = short sleep

Notes: Although this word typically refers to one deep breath as if it were a sigh, it is often used to indicate that one was not able to rest or sleep for a long time. In essence, they only slept the length of one breath. For example:

어젯밤에 한숨도 못 잤어요 = I didn’t sleep a wink last night

Common Usages:
깊은 한숨 = deep breath
한숨을 쉬다 = to take a deep breath
안도의 한숨 = a sigh of relief

Examples:
걱정했던 수술이 잘 끝나서 마침내 안도의 한숨을 쉬었어요
= The surgery I was worried about is over so now I can finally breathe a sigh of relief

통화하는 내내 깊은 한숨을 내쉰 아버지가 걱정이 되서 무슨 일이 있냐고 물어봤어요
= I kept hearing my dad take deep breaths on the phone so I asked if everything was alright

전용 = for use only by the noun before it

Common Usages:
…전용세제 = detergent specific for …
자전거 전용 도로 = a road/lane for bikes only

Examples:
이 길은 보행자 전용이에요 = This is a path for only pedestrians
이 길은 자전거 전용 길이잖아요 = You should know that this road is a road only for bicycles

수료증 = a certification for completing a class

Examples:
수료증을 받고 싶으면 수료를 해야 돼요. 근데 당신이 수료를 아직 안 했잖아요
= If you want to get the class certification, you need to finish the class. But, you should know that you didn’t finish the class yet

식품 사업을 시작하기 전에 식품관련 수업을 들었다는 수료증을 받아야 사업을 시작할 수 있어요
= Before you start a food business, you need to attend classes about food and get a certification, then you can start it

말대답 = talk back

Examples:
십대에는 사춘기를 겪으면서 많은 아이들이 부모님께 말대답을 해요
= Many teenagers talk back to their parents while going through puberty

하루 종일 말대답을 하는 아이들 때문에 학교 출근하는 게 너무 스트레스예요
= Because of the kids who talk back to me all day, going to work is very stressful

Verbs:
새다 = to leak

Common Usages:
물이 새다 = for water to leak

Examples:
노후로 인해 음식을 할 때마다 가스가 새서 급하게 가스점검을 받았어요
= Due to it being old, whenever I cook, gas leaks (from the stove/line), so I urgently got it repaired

갑자기 예상치 못한 양의 폭우가 쏟아지자 천장에서 물이 새기 시작했어요
= All of a sudden a rainstorm of unexpected amount came down, and water started leaking from the roof

맞서다 = to stand up against, to oppose

Common Usages:
맞서 싸우다 = to fight against
당당하게 맞서다 = to stand up against bravely

Examples:
그 소년은 더 이상 자신을 괴롭히는 친구를 피하지 않고 맞서 싸웠어요
= That boy couldn’t handle his friend picking on him anymore so he didn’t avoid him and fought against him

선생님이 왜 화가 났냐고? 선생님에게 말대답을 했잖아! 선생님에게 그렇게 맞서면 당연히 선생님이 화가 나실 거예요
= Did you just ask why the teacher was mad? You should know that (it is because) you talked back to him! If you oppose the teacher like that, obviously he is going to get mad

도입하다 = to introduce an item

The noun form of this word “도입” translates to “introduction”

Common Usages:
도입이 시급하다 = to introduce (into the market or society) urgently/quickly

Examples:
이 정책은 한국에 매우 필요하므로 국내 도입이 시급합니다
= Korea needs this policy a lot, so the introduction of it in the country is urgent

새로운 정책이 이번 년도에 도입됐지만 아직 사람들이 잘 모르고 있어요
= There was a new policy introduced this year, but people still don’t know about it

반영하다 = to reflect

The noun form of this word “반영” translates to “reflection”

Notes: 반영하다 can be used to indicate that light is being reflected. It can also be used to indicate that something is influenced by one’s thoughts, opinion or ideas.

Common Usages:
빛이 반영하다 = to reflect light
의견을 반영하다 = to accept and be influenced by an opinion
생각을 반영하다 = to accept and be influenced by one’s thinking

Examples:
부모님의 의견을 적극 반영해서 서울에 있는 회사에 취직하기로 했어요
= I really accept/agree with my parent’s opinion, so I changed jobs to one that is in Seoul

좀 더 다양한 야채가 제공됐으면 하는 손님들의 생각을 반영해서 새 메뉴를 출시했어요
= They introduced a new menu that reflected/was influenced by the thoughts of their customers who said they wish there were more variety in the vegetables they provided

재활용하다 = to recycle

The noun form of this word “재활용” translates to “recycling”

Common Usages:
봉지를 재활용하다 = to recycle a bag

Examples:
한국에서는 비닐봉지도 재활용해야 해요
= In Korea, you have to recycle plastic bags too

올바른 재활용을 통해 한정된 자원을 더욱 효율적으로 쓸 수 있어요
= By doing proper recycling, we can use our limited resources more effectively

수강하다 = to take a course

The noun form of this word “수강” translates to “taking a class”

Common Usages:
수강신청 = to apply to take a course

Examples:
이 수업은 모든 학생들이 필히 수강해야 하는 필수 수업이에요
= This class is a mandatory class that each student must take

내일은 대학 생활의 질을 결정하는 아주 중요한 수강신청을 하는 날이에요
= Tomorrow is the day that can determine one’s university lifestyle quality – the day of choosing one’s courses

수료하다 = to finish a course

The noun form of this word “수료” translates to “finishing a class”

Common Usages:
수료증 = a certification for completing a class

Examples:
이 수업을 수료해야 수료증을 받을 수 있어요
= Only if you complete the course can you receive the certification of completion

석사 학위를 수료하기 위해 논문을 써야 되었어요
= In order to finish my Master’s degree I had to write a thesis

종료되다 = to be finished, completed, off

The noun form of this word “종료” translates to “conclusion”

Common Usages:
강제종료되다 = to force stop/turn off

Examples:
이 식당은 식품위생법 위반으로 영업이 강제로 종료됐어요
= This restaurant was forced to shut down business because they broke food sanitation rules

만일 수업 중 수업 외에 동영상을 보게 되면 동영상이 자동으로 종료돼요
= If you watch a video during the class that is unrelated to the class, the video will automatically be shut off

Adjectives:
곱다 = to be beautiful

Common Usages:
피부가 곱다 = to one’s skin to be beautiful
목소리가 곱다 = for one’s voice to be beautiful

Examples:
저 가수는 목소리가 곱고 맑아서 어르신들이 특히 좋아해요
= That singer’s voice is so beautiful and clear, he is particularly liked among older people

저는 매일 선크림을 발라서 나이에 비해 피부가 곱다는 소리를 많이 들어요
= I put sunscreen on every day, so I hear a lot that my skin is beautiful for my age

촌스럽다 = for a style to look awkward

This word follows the ㅂ irregular.

Common Usages:
스타일이 촌스럽다 = for one’s style to be awkward

Examples:
저는 입맛이 촌스러워서 크림파스타나 피자를 별로 좋아하지 않아요
= My taste in food is a little bit weird – I don’t really like cream pasta or pizza

어렸을 때 사진을 보면 지금의 유행과 달라서 매우 스타일이 촌스러워 보여요
= When I look at the pictures from when I was young, the style is so different than now that the style then looks so awkward

꼼꼼하다 = to be meticulous

Examples:
저는 어렸을 때부터 성격이 꼼꼼해서 어떤 일을 하든 실수를 하지 않았어요
= When I was young, my personality was meticulous that whatever I did I didn’t make a mistake

내일 발표할 중요한 자료가 있으니 제발 꼼꼼하게 확인해서 부장님께 전달해주세요
= This is an important material for tomorrow’s presentation, so please check it meticulously and deliver it to the boss

Adverbs and Other Words:
꼼꼼히 = meticulously/precisely

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

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

각 가게마다 환불을 받을 수 있는 시기가 다르니 꼼꼼히 확인해야 해요
= The time/period that you can receive a refund at each store is different, so make sure you check them meticulously

꼼꼼히 확인했는데도 발견 못한 문제가 있어서 내일 다시 수리를 해야 돼요
= Even though I checked it meticulously, if there is a problem I couldn’t find we will have to fix it again tomorrow

좋은 영화배우가 되기 위해서는 자기가 맡은 역할의 캐릭터 분석을 꼼꼼히 해야 해요
= To become a good movie actor, it’s essential to meticulously analyze the character of the role taken on

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

 

Introduction

In this lesson you will learn how to end sentences with ~잖아 or ~잖아요. Though this is a very common ending in conversational Korean, English speakers often cannot figure out exactly what it means. The main reason for this is simply because it is hard to translate directly into English. In this lesson, there will be many examples that describe specifically the situation where this grammatical form can be used. Let’s get started.

 

The meaning of ~잖아()

As I already mentioned, adding ~잖아 or ~잖아요 to a word at the end of a sentence is very common in Korean. The meaning that the construction creates is very difficult to translate, but easier to describe. Therefore, when reading the example sentences in this lesson, pay more attention to the descriptions after the sentences that I provide than the actual translations.

~잖아 or ~잖아요 can be attached to verbs, adjectives or 이다 at the end of a sentence. It creates a meaning that loosely translates to “as you know/you know/don’t forget that…” In practice, this is used when you are talking to somebody who already knows (or should already know) the fact that you are stating, and you are asserting to this person that he/she knows (or should know) this fact. A common word that you will find ~잖아 or ~잖아요 attached to is 맞다. For example:

맞잖아요! = I told you it was correct! You should have known that this was correct!

Description of when this would be used:

Imagine yourself with a friend, and somebody asks the two of you what the capital of Canada is. You say that the capital of Canada is Ottawa, and your friend says the capital is Vancouver. After debating for a bit, the person who asked you the question says that the capital of Canada is in fact Ottawa. In this case, you could say to your friend: 오타와가 맞잖아! = I told you Ottawa was correct/You should have known that Ottawa was correct!

Similarly, if you know that the capital city of Canada isn’t Vancouver – and your friend should have known that too, you could say:

밴쿠버 아니잖아! = It’s not Vancouver! You should know that it is not Vancouver!

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Let’s look at other examples of ~잖아(요) being used. In order for you to get the hang of the usage, I will provide detailed descriptions of the situation where each sentence would be used:

내일은 토요일이잖아요! 그래서 우리가 일찍 가야 될 것 같아요 = You should know that tomorrow is Saturday, so we should probably go early!

Description of when this would be used:

Imagine yourself with a friend discussing what time you should go to the park tomorrow. Because tomorrow is Saturday, you know that there will probably be a lot of people at the park on Saturday. Your friend should also know this, so you can use ~잖아(요) to indicate that this should be information that is already know. Therefore, you can say to your friend: “don’t forget/you should know that tomorrow is Saturday! So we should go early because of that!”

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나는 돈이 없잖아! = Don’t forget that I don’t have any money/you should know that I don’t have any money

Description of when this would be used:

Imagine yourself with your girlfriend but with no money (which I don’t recommend, but it could happen if you forget your wallet or something). You tell her that you forgot your wallet and therefore have no money on you. Your girlfriend later asks you to buy her a cup of coffee, to which you can respond “Don’t forget that I don’t have any money/you should know that I don’t have any money!” Since you have already told your girlfriend that you don’t have your wallet she should already know this information.

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윌리가 배고프잖아! = Willy is hungry!/You should know that Willy is hungry/Don’t forget that Willy is hungry!

Description of when this would be used:

Okay, so my name is actually “Willy” and I heard this sentence this morning. I will explain the situation of why it was used. I was at my wife’s house and we were talking about what we were going to make for lunch. My mother-in-law suggested that we make something small, to which father-in-law responded “윌리가 배고프잖아!”

As I mentioned in the previous example – the important thing to remember with this meaning is that the listener should already know the fact that is being said. In this case, I am (actually) always hungry, and my father-in-law was making an assertion to his wife that “don’t forget, Willy eats a lot and is going to be hungry if we cook something small!”

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~잖아(요) is also commonly used when one is describing some long situation (like a story). When this happens (in any language) it is common to provide some sort of back-story that is often common knowledge before getting to the actual story. For example:

 

Description of when this would be used:

Imagine yourself at work the day after you were sick. You are at work, and a co-worker heard from somebody that you went to the hospital last night. He asks why you went to the hospital, and in your response you say “remember/don’t forget/as you know I was sick at work yesterday… Then, I went home and ate, and suddenly threw up, so I went to the hospital.” Notice that in this example as well, the listener should know about the fact that you were sick yesterday.

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선생님이 왜 화가 났냐고? 선생님에게 말대답을 했잖아! 선생님에게 그렇게 맞서면 당연히 선생님이 화가 나실 거예요 = Did you just ask why the teacher was mad? You should know that (it is because) you talked back to him! If you oppose the teacher like that, obviously he is going to get mad

Description of when this would be used:

Imagine you are talking to your friend, and he is telling you that he is in detention at school. Your friend says to you that he doesn’t understand why he ended up getting a detention. In response to this, you can tell him “you talked back to the teacher!” Here, your friend should know that he talked back to the teacher (of course, he was the one who did it). You can assert to him that he knows this by saying “선생님에게 말대답을 했잖아.”

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수료증을 받고 싶으면 수료를 해야 돼요. 근데 당신이 수료를 아직 안 했잖아요 = If you want to get the class certification, you need to finish the class. But, you should know that you didn’t finish the class yet

Description of when this would be used:

Imagine you are asking for a certification for taking a class. You are talking with somebody in the administration office, who is trying to tell you that you need to finish the class in order to get the certification. In this situation, the person in the office can say “you should know that you didn’t finish the class.”

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그거를 거기다가 버리지 마! 플라스틱을 재활용해야 되잖아 = Don’t throw that (out) there! You should know that we have to recycle plastics.

Description of when this would be used:

Imagine you are with your son, and he throws his plastic bottle in the regular garbage can. You taught him many times that recycling is important, so he should know to throw the plastic bottle in the recycle bin. At which point, you could say “you should know that we/you should recycle plastic.”

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Below are many more examples without the long-winded description. Notice that I use “you should know” to translate the feeling of ~잖아(요). This isn’t a perfectly accurate way to describe the nuance of ~잖아(요), but it is the best I can do.

너무 촌스러워 보이잖아 = You should know that you look so awkward!
수도꼭지를 안 잠갔잖아! = You should know that you didn’t turn off the water faucet!
이 서비스는 이미 종료됐잖아 = You should know that this service is already finished
이 길은 자전거 전용 길이잖아요 = You should know that this road is a road only for bicycles

그렇게 하면 우리에게 이익이 없잖아요
= You should know that if we do it that way we will have no profit/benefit

여당이 야당보다 권력이 훨씬 크잖아요
= You should know that the ruling party has more power than the opposition party

내일 우리가 그 제품을 도입할 거잖아
= You should know that we have to introduce that product tomorrow

그 약을 식전 말고 식후에 먹어야 되잖아요
= You should know that you should take that medicine after a meal, not before

오늘 운동하자고? 나는 어제 한숨도 못 잤잖아!
= Did you say “let’s exercise today?” You should know that I didn’t sleep a wink last night!

선생님이 이 시험이 성적에 반영되지 않는다고 그랬잖아요
= You should know that the teacher said that this exam won’t show up on our grade

그 사원이 항상 꼼꼼하잖아! 이 일도 잘할 수 있을 것 같아
= You should know that that employee always works very meticulously. I think he will be able to do this job well too.

여기 물이 새잖아요. 그래서 우리가 테이프로 구멍을 막아야 돼요
= You should know that the water is leaking here. Therefore, we should cover the hole up with tape

제가 한 달 동안 꼼꼼히 수강을 했잖아요. 그래서 제가 환경 문제에 대해 많이 배웠어요
= You should know that I meticulously took the class for the past month. So, I learned a lot about environmental problems,

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A few more things to be aware about before we finish:

Additional grammatical principles are never attached to the end of 잖아(요). Therefore, you will always find it at the end of a sentence.

My wife always tells me that adding ~잖아(요) to the end of a sentence makes it sound like you are being rude or mean. Almost as if you are saying “I TOLD you it was like that!” Though she says this, I constantly hear people using ~잖아(요) all the time without sounding or looking angry. Nonetheless, she is telling me that you should be cautious if using this form to an elder or to somebody who deserves high respect.

In a recent lesson, you learned about ~알다시피 and how it can be used to mean “as you know.” Though ~알다시피 and ~잖아(요) have different usages, their meanings are quite similar. Therefore, I suggest that if you want to use “~잖아(요)” to an elder – consider using ~알다시피 first. For example, if your boss asked you why you were late for work yesterday, you could say:

제가 어제 아팠잖아요! = Don’t forget/You should know that I was sick yesterday

But if you say that sentence, you are (in a way) asserting to your boss that he/she should know that you were sick, which might sound very rude. Instead, you could say:

부장님도 아시다시피 저는 어제 아파서 회사에 늦게 왔어요 = As you know, I was sick yesterday, so I was late

If you said this sentence instead, it would sound much more polite and probably wouldn’t get you in trouble.

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In addition to all of this, ~잖아(요) is commonly attached to 있다. This construction should not be seen as the meanings of “있다” and “잖아(요)” put together. Instead, “있잖아” or “있잖아요” can be thought of as one unit. “있잖아” or “ 있잖아요” are commonly used at the beginning of sentences when somebody is trying to think of what they want to say or if they are indicating that they have something to say. For example:

있잖아… 오늘은 재활용을 해야 되는 날이야 = So, you know,… Today is the day to do recycling

That’s it for this lesson!

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Okay, got it! Take me to the next lesson!