Korean Lesson 2 – Simple Conversation


Now you have had a taster, try mastering the following useful phrases to initiate a polite conversation.

N.B. The style used is the polite style.  There are others such as the formal (used when speaking to a boss for example) and the plain style (for close friends and family).

잘 – well (chal)

지내요 – to pass time (jinaeyo)

요즘 – nowadays (yojûm)

그래요? – really? (kûraeyo?)

내 – yes / ok (ne)

아니오 – no (aniyo)

씨 – Mr/Mrs/Miss (shii)

어떻게 – How…? (ottokhe?)

는 – Topic marker (Here: like saying, And you?) (nûn)

바빠요 – Busy (pappayo)

A = 아! Michael-씨, 안녕하세요?

B = 키-씨!  아녕하세요?

A = 어떻게 지내요?

B = 네, 잘 지내요.  키-씨는?

A = 네.  요즘 아주 바빠요.

B = 아, 그래요?

A = Ah!   Michaeru-shii, annyong haseyo?

B = Khii-shii!  Annyong haseyo?

A = Ottokhe jinaeyo?

B = Ne, chal jinaeyo.  Khii-shii nûn?

A = Ne.  Yojûm aju pappayo.

B = Ah, kuraeyo?

A = Ah!   Mr Michael, Hello!

B = Mr Key!  Hello!

A = How are you?

B = Yeah, good.  And you? (lit. And what about Mr Kim?)

A = OK.  These days I’m very busy.

B = Oh, really?

Important Cultural points.

Notice how they use YES differently in Korean.  Observe and try to do the same.

Did you notice that HELLO is a question in Korean?  It needs the question mark.

What about names, did you notice the convention?  It’s Mr Kim or Mr Michael, not Mr Smith.  You need to be called Mr + First Name.  Also, it is impolite to you the word for YOU, so if asking, AND YOU? You need to say, AND MR…?

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