Grammar Lesson 2 Korean

(ㅂ/습)니다 (deferential form)

In Korean there are different levels of politeness that one needs to be aware of.
For most of these lessons we have used the ‘polite’ form, which is the form you will use when speaking with strangers or people your age.
The polite form (called 존댓말) always has ‘요’ as the ending.
Now we will teach you the deferential ending.

V + (ㅂ/습)니다

1. The most polite ending in Korean is the deferential ending (ㅂ/습)니다. You remove the verb stem ‘다’ and add ‘ㅂ’ to the end of the verb if it ends in a vowel, or add ‘습’ if it ends in a consonant. Then you add ‘니다’ to the end.

지금 갑니다. = I’m going now.

만나서 반갑습니다. = Pleased to meet you.

V + (ㅂ/습)니까?

2. When asking a question, it is the form (ㅂ/습)니까, so you add ‘니까?’ to the end instead of ‘니다’. To make it even more polite you can combine this with the honorific particle (으시) to make ‘십니까?’

잘 주무십니까? = Did you sleep well?

V + (으)십시오

3. When making a request or imperative statement, we replace the Verb’s ‘다’ with ‘(으)십시오’.

빨리 오십시오! = Come fast!

V + 시겠어요?
V+ 시겠습니까?

4. When asking someone to do something or in a ‘let’s’ sentence, we can use ‘시겠습니까?’ or ‘시겠어요?’. We’ll learn more about ‘겠’ later.

어디로 가시겠습니까? – Where you would you like to go?

V + 겠습니다

5. When speaking about an intention to do something, or a future action, its better to use ‘겠습니다’ instead of ‘(ㄹ/을)거에요’.

제가 하겠습니다. – I’ll do it.

6. These endings are usually spoken to people much older than you, seniors, bosses, etc. When talking to strangers who you don’t know the status or age, just use the polite ending (요) instead.
These endings are also used commonly with the ‘formal’ versions of some Korean verbs like 드시다 (formal version of 먹다) and 드리다 (formal version of 주다).

Grammar Lesson 3 Korean

(아/어/여)서, (으)니까 (reason, cause, result)

려고 하다 is a grammar construct that is showing future action, and is similar to (ㄹ/을)래요 but in this case more like ‘going to do’ and is not just an ending; it acts more like a conjunction because unlike the other future forms, the ending 하다 can be treated just as any other verb. To make this ending, we conjugate the verb into present tense using 아/어/여, then we add 서 to the end. For (으)니까, we conjugate the verb with 으 if the ending is a consonant and add 니까 to the end. We can either use these as endings, or connect other sentences to them to show the logical connection.

V + (아/어/여)서

1. (아/어/여)서 is similar to using 그래서 to join sentences, except it is attached to the end of the verbs themselves, and can also be used as an ending by itself if the sentence is enough to show the reason. You can think of the sentence using (아/어/여)서 as explaining the reason behind something, and then following it up with the next sentence. (아/어/여)서 cannot be used in imperative sentences.

V + (으)니까

2. (으)니까 is similar to (아/어/여)서, except the connection is more direct and the sentence containing (으)니까 explains the reason more clearly. (으)니까 can be used in imperative sentences whereas (아/어/여)서 cannot. (으)니까 can also be shortened to (으)니 in colloquial speech.

N + (으)니까
N + (이)라서/(이)어서

3. Both can be used with nouns too. (으)니까 is just appended to the noun, but (아/어/여)서 has to become (이)라서 or (이)어서, with 이 appended if the noun ends in a consonant and either 라서 or 어서 added.


요즘에 바빠서 친구랑 못 만나요. – I was busy recently so I couldn’t meet my friends.

미국에 와서 뭐 할 거예요? – You came to USA, so what are you going to do?

친구니까요! – Because I’m your friend!

외국사람이라서 한국어 잘 못 해요. – I’m a foreigner, so I cannot speak Korean well.

저 지금 바쁘니까 나중에 전화할게요. – I’m busy right now so I’ll call you later.