TIL: A Collection from the Past Week

TIL for Korean.

The Grammar Extension at the back of the textbook is a treasure trove of information.

I was supposed to post this yesterday but I forgot, so I added in even more last minute stuff from my morning revision. I'll do a separate post later for the test.

19 July

  1. Looking at the conjuation tables on Wiktionary, I realised that for contrast, 지만 is formal non-polite.
  2. I have no idea what I was thinking about the casual vs informal distinction. There shouldn't be one (though I mused about it and in Lesson 36 actually decided that there must be a distinction). The textbook calls it informal, such as when it discusses -아요/어요. I realised that while looking at the Grammar Extension at the back of the textbook). Then, I also realised tht the conjugation tables on Wiktionary calls 해요체 informal polite... I was evidently blind to the Wiktionary table headers.

24 July

(You can tell how much I studied during the week lol - the answer is almost nothing. I only did additional Quizlet reviews and found that they have a combined sets feature.)

1. Informal polite past for 이다

Informal polite past for 이다 (이에요/예요) is 이었어요/였어요 from reading the Grammar Extension at the back of the book.

This is from Chapter 5 (!) but I was reading everything from the start.

So far we've seen:

  • Informal polite present: 이에요/예요
  • Informal polite past: 이었어요/였어요
  • Formal polite present (indicative): 입니다
  • Formal polite present (interrogative): 입니까
  • Formal polite past (indicative): 이었습니다/였습니다
  • Formal polite past (interrogative): 이었습니까/였습니까
  • Informal polite present (honorific): 이세요/세요
  • Informal polite past (honorific): 이셨어요/셨어요

2. Specific/General Rules

There's quite a few grammar rules that are taught first specifically, and then a more general rule is given later, without explicitly tying them together.

For example:

  1. N 주세요 (Chapter 2, #3) is actually a more specific one of the making request V–(으)세요 (Chapter 6, #1). The first rule covers only the verb 주다. I only made this connection because the Grammar Extension mentions in their respective sections that you can add 좀 to make the request more polite. Adding 좀 was not re-emphasised in Chapter 6.
  2. N(이)세요 (Chapter 9, #3) is a very specific one just for casual/informal honorific conjugation of the verb "to be" of the very next rule A/V–(으)시– (Chapter 9, #4). In fact this 4th grammar rule is so general that it technically covers the formal (하십시오체) form too, but we have not actually covered that.

The rules concerning 이다 in Chapter 1 can be said to be very specific conjugations for that verb alone. But I think a case can be made that 이다 ("to be") is special in that sense. It really depends on how you want to look at it.

In most languages the verb "to be" is highly irregular; 이다 for the conjugations we've seen is pretty much regular (except that it has 2 forms in some cases depending on whether the noun preceding it has batchim or not).

The other thing special about it is that "to be" is a verb that joins 2 "subjects" - more accurately, two "things" in the nominative. (It was first brought to my attention because of this thing known as Gleichsetzungsnominativ in German - basically, both of the things are in nominative.)

It's very different from other verbs where there is a subject and an object (that is being acted on). With "to be" the two things are "equal".

3. Why is it (으)세요 for A/V–(으)시–?

Remember in Lesson 36 I said I wasn't sure why it congjuated such that 시 becomes 세 and not 셔? I had noticed that on Wiktionary they do list the 셔 form there in the conjugation tables.

The textbook actually mentions this (again in the Grammar Extension): Basically, –(으)세요 is more commonly used than –(으)셔요.

4. There is a formal way to reply to (으)ㄹ까요? suggestions

It's –(으)ㅂ시다.

This is the hortative form for the formal polite (하십시오체) form.

With batchim:

  • 뭘 먹을까요?
  • 비빔밥을 먹읍시다.

Without batchim:

  • 어디에 갈까요?
  • 노래방에 갑시다.

It just so happens that for the informal polite (해요체) form, the indicative form is identical to the hortative form, which is why you simply reply the same way.

You make the distinction in speech with the intonation.

But you should never use this to superiors. The textbook doesn't explain why, but I'd guess it's because there is probably a more polite way to suggest things to your elders.

25 July

The Wongoji rule that I missed that earned that remark from the teacher was that I wrote the full stop on the next line. If it's the end of a sentence at the end of a line, the period should stay on the same line, basically sharing a box with the last character.

This page covers it.

In the case that a sentence mark should be stamped at the end of a line, it shouldn’t be carried down to the next line, but rather placed inside the last box on that line. Starting a line with ‘.’ or ‘,’ should be carefully avoided.

The handout that I have doesn't mention that rule. In fact, it's pretty much what this other page on the same site says.

Interestingly, I cannot seem to find these rules mentioned on any other site apart from the one I've linked above.

You'll only receive email when they publish something new.

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