Thursday, April 24, 2014


So far we have learned the present tense of verbs. But is that enough to start creating our own sentences? No, it is not. Even if we had the necessary vocabulary, we would still need particles to create a perfect sentence.

This particle is used to show to others what the topic of the sentence is all about. Also used in cases when we make a general or actual statement

Words ending with 받침 +은
Words ending without 받침 +는

For example:
저는 학생이에요.  => I am a student.
The topic here is me (저). It would make more sense if we translated it like this: "As for me, I am a student."
내일은 학교에 가요. => I am going to school tomorrow.
The topic here is tomorrow (내일). It would make more sense if we translated it like this:"As for tomorrow, I am going to school"

This particle is used to show the subject of the sentence. It indicates a certain person or thing that both the speaker and listener know of. 

Words ending with 받침 +
Words ending without 받침 +가

For example:
민혁이 먹어요. => Minhyeok is eating (who?)
날씨가 추워요. => The weather is cold (what?)

은/는 vs 이/가
Most of the time they can be interchangeably used. If you are confused as to which one to use, ask yourself first "WHO?" or "WHAT?" and if your sentence contains the answer, then 이/가 most probably is more appropriate to use.
You can think of the difference between "A/AN" and "THE" in English.

Apples are red = 사과는 빨간색이에요  (A general or actual statement about apples)
The apple is red = 사과가  빨간색이에요 (A particular apple)

Also keep in mind that 이/가 is usually followed by adjectives or descriptive verbs.

This particle is used to show the object of the sentence and it cannot be used with adjectives and descriptive verbs but only with verbs that show action.

Words ending with 받침 +
Words ending without 받침 +를

For example:
저는 라면을 먹어요. =>  (As for me) I eat ramen.
숙제를 해요. => I do homework.

It is attached after words related to time and place. When used after words related to place,  a verb that shows motion follows.

3시에 만나요. => Let's meet at 3 o'clock
커피숍에 가요 => I am going to the coffee shop.

Most commonly followed by these verbs:
가다 (to go) 오다 (to come)
다니다 (to attend,commute) 돌아가다 (to return)
도착하다 (to arrive) 올라가다 (to go up, ascend)
내려가다 (to go down, descend)

Please note that when it is followed by 있다/없다 it shows someone's/something's location and could be translated as "exists or is (doesn't exist/ isn't)". Confused? Check the example:
강아지가 소파에 있어요. => The puppy is on the couch.

IMPORTANT: This particle can NEVER go after these words:

어제 (yesterday) 그제/그저께 (day before yesterday)
언제 (when?) 오늘 (today)
내일 (tomorrow) 모래 (day after tomorrow)

Can combine it with -도/는 = 에도/에는

Now that we know all the above particles we can proceed to -도. It can mean "also" or "too". Used as is, regardless of 받침.

For example:
하나는 학생이에요. = > Hannah is a student.
미나도 학생이에요 => Mina is a student too! / Mina is also a student!
나도 / 저도! => Me too!

For now, please note that it is used only when the subjects are not the same.
If the subject is the same, then we use 또한.
(We will learn later on how to use 도 for the same subject)

For example:
미나는 학생이에요. => Mina is a student.
(미나는) 또한 댄서예요. => Mina is also a dancer.

에서 (PLACE)
This particle has two uses
1) It can show where an action takes place. Used as the English "in","at" or "on".
     커피숍에서 만나요. => We will meet at the coffee shop.
2) It can act as the English "From" when talking about places/distance.
    그리스에서 얼마나 걸려요? => How long does it take from Greece?
When used as "from" it is almost always followed by 까지.

Can combine it with -도/는 = 에서도/에서는

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