Our word for the day is king. This past weekend, Hyo and I went to visit her father. One of his favorite things to do is watch historical Korean dramas which usually feature kings and/or queens for the Joseon Dynasty. After seeing parts of a show he was watching this weekend, I got the idea to do a short post on how to say king in Korean.
You probably won’t find yourself referring to any current government official as a king, but it’s still a good word to know. Sometimes Koreans will refer to a spoiled son sarcastically as a little little king or prince.
Other words that are sometimes used for the word king are 제왕 and 국왕 however, just knowing the word 왕 will be enough.
It’s just about spring time so we are finishing our season series with some spring vocabulary in Korean! We may do a part 2 like we did for some of the others as well.
Spring is one of the best times to visit Korea as the freezing Korean winter has passed yet, the humidity of summer hasn’t arrived yet. You can also check out the many cherry blossom festivals across the country throughout April.
It looks like it will be warmer than usual this year, so the cherry blossoms may bloom sooner than usual.
Up next in our family series is learning how to say sister in Korean. Like the words for brother, how you address your sister would depend on your age in relation to her. Also like the words for brother, whether you are male or female which dictate how you address her as well.
Let’s start with the first one:
언니 (eon-ni) = This is used by women to refer to their older sister. It would also be used if you are close friends with a woman who is older than you. Remember that 친구 (friend) is only used towards people who are the same age.
(여)동생 ([yeo] dong-saeng) = 동생 is used to refer to your younger siblings. Sometimes people add 여 (woman) or 남 (man) to make a distinction as to whether their younger sibling is their sister or brother. However most times, these are left out, and people simply say 동생.
누나 (nu-na) = This is used by men to refer to their older sister or a woman who is a close friend and also older than them.
And that’s it! Very simple. Check out some of our other posts on family vocabulary below:
Today, we’re talking about a commonly used word, mother. Like other words for family members, I find this one to be easy as well since the casual form sounds a bit like ‘Mama’ in English.
Let’s start with the first form:
어머님 (eo-meo-nim) = This is the formal form of the word mother, and should only be used when you’re addressing someone else’s mother. You would never use this to address your own mother.
This is also used to address your mother in law as well. I always use this to address Hyo’s mom and it is similar to the formal form of father, 아버님. Adding ‘님’ to a title for a person makes it formal. You may also hear this a lot in dramas (especially ones dealing with and focusing on family issues).
어머니 (eo-meo-ni) = This is more casual than the first one, and would be used to address your own mother. Most people will use this to address their own mother.
엄마 (eom-ma) = This is the most casual way to say mother in Korean. This should also only be used to address your own mother. Kids especially like to use this one.
If you want to say ‘My mother’ in Korean, you wouldn’t use the commonly used ‘내’ for my, but ‘우리’. For example:
우리 엄마 (u-ri eom-ma)
우리 어머니 (u-ri eo-meo-ni)
You may think that 우리 is only used for ‘we’, but it can mean ‘my’ in many cases.
Now you may ask, is their a mother’s day or father’s day in Korea. The answer is yes and no. Both mothers and fathers share a special holiday called Parent’s Day (어버의날) in May. It’s a pretty big day for parents, and they are usually given flowers, taken out to dinner, and given money.
Easy right? Now go practice and confuse your own mother with your new vocabulary!