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Lesson 94: To end up: ~게 되다

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To end up: ~게 되다



찌개 = stew
에어컨 = air conditioning
인구 = population
인간 = human/human being
대중교통 = public transportation
막차 = last bus/last train
독립 = independence
= chapter (of a book)
사투리 = dialect
우울증 = depression
장학금 = scholarship
양초 = candle
중앙 = middle, center
요일 = a specific day of the week
밤새 = overnight
부서 = department
의학 = medicine (as a field of study)

간호하다 = to nurse, to care for
증가하다 = to increase
이르다 = to arrive, to reach
발전하다 = to improve/develop/progress
망가지다 = to be broken

튼튼하다 = to be robust, strong

Adverbs and Other words:
서서히 = gradually/slowly
순전히 = purely

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



We have discussed the usage of 되다 in many earlier lessons, including Lesson 9, Lesson 14, Lesson 49 and Lesson 80. Using 되다 combined with ~게 (from Lesson 56) will be discussed in this lesson. Let’s get started!


To end up: ~ 되다

In Lesson 56, you learned that ~게 can be attached to the stem of a verb to indicate that something is “made” to happen. In other earlier lessons, you learned that 되다 can be used to indicate that something “becomes” something. Therefore, you can use ~게 되다 to indicate a situation was “made to become” a certain way. For example:

저는 그 여자랑 사랑에 빠지게 되었어요 = I was made to become falling in love with her

Although you could consider it a direct translation from the Korean sentence, it doesn’t sound natural in English. In English, we usually use the phrase “to end up” to describe this type of meaning. For example:

저는 그 여자랑 사랑에 빠지게 되었어요 = I ended up falling in love with her

Using this form indicates that the events that occurred happened out of one’s control, almost by chance or fate. I first came across this grammatical form while reading a book, where the main character said something like:

저는 그 회사에 취직하게 되었어요 = I ended up getting a job at that company

When I first saw that sentence, I wondered how it differed from this sentence:

저는 그 회사에 취직했어요 = I got a job at that company.

As I mentioned earlier, the result of the first sentence happens without the subject having much influence on the outcome. In this sense, using ~게 되다 can make the sentence sound humble. For example:

저는 그 회사에 취직했어요 = I got a job at that company
Here, it is almost as if that person is boasting about the fact that he got a job, maybe because of how awesome he is.

저는 그 회사에 취직하게 되었어요 = I ended up getting a job at that company
Here, the feeling is more humble because the speaker had no influence on the outcome, thus not flaunting his awesomeness.

Below are many examples:

막차를 타게 되었어요
= I ended up taking the last train

우리가 목적지에 이르게 되었어요
= We ended up arriving at our destination

그 일을 끝내야 해서 밤새 일하게 되었어요
= We had to finish that work, so we ended up staying up all night

동생이 죽은 후에 제가 우울증에 겪게 되었어요
= After my brother died I ended up suffering from depression

그 학생이 아주 똑똑해서 장학금을 받게 되었어요
= That student is so smart that he ended up receiving a scholarship

한국 사람들이 끝까지 싸워서 결국 독립하게 되었어요
= Korean people fought to the end and eventually ended up getting independence

무슨 요일에 갈지 결정을 못해서 그냥 토요일에 가게 됐어요
= We couldn’t decide what day to go on, so we just ended up going on Saturday

다리를 튼튼하게 만들었지만 바람 때문에 망가지게 되었어요
= We made the bridge really strongly/rigidly, but it ended up breaking because of the wind

날씨가 갑자기 매우 더워져서 에어컨을 급하게 사게 되었어요
= The weather suddenly got very hot, so I ended up urgently buying an air conditioner

우연히 산 복권이 당첨이 돼서 하루 아침에 부자가 되게 됐어요
= Luckily, the lottery ticket I bought won, so in a morning I ended up becoming rich

무엇을 먹을지 결정을 못해서 그냥 집에 있던 찌개를 먹게 되었어요
= We couldn’t decide what to eat, so we ended up just eating the stew that had at home

저는 중앙 정부에서 가장 중요한 일을 하는 부서에서 일을 하게 되었어요
= I ended up working at the central government working on a task in the most important department

새로 생긴 대중교통으로 인해 그 도시의 인구가 갑자기 증가하게 되었어요
= Due to the newly built mass transportation (system), that city’s population ended up suddenly increasing

이 책의 첫 장은 단어가 아주 어려워서 모두들 사전을 가지고 읽게 되었어요
= The words in the first chapter of that book are very hard, so everybody ended up reading it with a dictionary

서서히 발전하는 의학기술로 전 세계적으로 인구가 계속 증가하게 되었어요
= Due to gradually developing medical techniques, the population of the world ended up continually increasing

제가 만든 양초를 친구들이 좋아해서 친구들을 위해 양초를 많이 만들게 되었어요
= My friends like the candles I make, so I ended up making a lot of candles for them

저의 남편의 사고로 인한 부상으로 죽을 때까지 제가 남편을 계속 간호하게 되었어요
= Due to my husband’s injury from his accident, I ended up having to take care of (be a nurse for) him until he died

제주도에서 오래 살아서 이제 말을 할 때 저도 모르게 제주도사투리로 말을 하게 돼요
= I lived in Jeju for a long time, so when I speak, I don’t even know it but I end up speaking with a Jeju accent

~게 되다 can also be used with adjectives, but I would advise against doing this. You may come across people doing, or you may see it from time to time in books, but using ~아/어지다 (which you learned in Lesson 18) has essentially the same meaning, and is much more natural than using ~게 되다 with adjectives. For example:

날씨가 춥게 되었어요 = The weather ended up getting cold (unnatural)
날씨가 추워졌어요 = The weather got cold (natural)

그 여자가 뚱뚱하게 되었어요 = That girl ended up getting fat (unnatural)
그 여자가 뚱뚱해졌어요 = That girl got fat (natural)

In previous lessons, you have learned about words like 만약 (Lesson 43) and 어쩌면 (Lesson 59). You learned that these words have very little meaning and are placed in sentences specifically for feeling.

The word 어쩌다 is another one of these words, and it is used in sentences that end in ~게 되다 (or other situations where something happens by chance and one has little impact on the outcome). Look-up “어쩌다” in the dictionary and you will see something like “accidentally” or “by chance.” However, just like 만약 and 어쩌면 – 어쩌다 has very little meaning unless used in a specific sentence where its feeling can come out. You will often see 어쩌다 in sentences that end in ~게 되다. For example:

어쩌다 그녀를 버스에서 보게 되었어요 = I ended up seeing her on the bus
어쩌다 시험을 합격하게 되었어요 = I ended up passing the exam

That’s it for this lesson!

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