10 Most Common Spelling Mistakes That Even Native Korean Speakers Make (1/2)


Spelling mistakes happen. We’ve all been there.ย I pride myself on not making too many of them too often, so when I do make one, I’m embarrassed, and my face turns red ๐Ÿ˜ก

That is just how I would naturally react, but in fact, there is nothing to be embarrassed about, as long as you are not clueless about how to fix it. Even then, it is okay to learn along the way not to make the same mistake again.

I am going to talk about 10 most common spelling mistakes that even native Korean speakers make.

I’ve seen a lot of you here whoย are already learning or at least interested in learning Korean. Getting the spelling right can be difficult especially in the beginning of your study.

Note that even Korean journalists make these mistakesย in their newspaper articles, so if you’ve made the same mistakes before, don’t worry about it! Here are some tips on how not to confuse them in the future ๐Ÿ˜‰

I’ve alsoย color-coded the words for ‘general’ (e.g. didn’t translate the prepositions, etc.) translation. Let me know in the comments what spellings you found most confusing! Also feel free to shareย any resources that you found helpful in learning Korean.

แ„‚แ…ก แ„‰แ…ตแ„…แ…ตแ„Œแ…ณ

These three words sound very similar, especially the last two. The difference is the bottom consonant in the first letter (ใ…Ž, ใ……, and ใ…ˆ).

๋‚ณ๋‹ค: to give birth/bring about a result


์—ฐ์–ด๋Š” ์•Œ์„ ๋‚ณ๊ธฐ ์œ„ํ•ด ๊ฐ•์„ ๊ฑฐ์Šฌ๋Ÿฌ ํ—ค์—„์ณ ์˜ฌ๋ผ๊ฐ„๋‹ค.

The salmonย swim upriver to spawn.

ํญ๋ ฅ์€ ํญ๋ ฅ์„ ๋‚ณ๋Š”๋‹ค.

Violence gives rise toย violence.

๋‚ซ๋‹ค: to recover (from)/better (than)


์ƒ์ฒ˜๊ฐ€ ์•„์ง ๋‚ซ์ง€ ์•Š์•˜๋‹ค.

The wound is not yet healed.

์ด ์ œํ’ˆ์ด ์งˆ์ ์ธ ๋ฉด์—์„œ ํ›จ์”ฌ ๋‚ซ๋‹ค.

This product is far better in quality.

๋‚ฎ๋‹ค: low


ํ•˜๋Š˜์— ๊ตฌ๋ฆ„์ด ๋‚ฎ๊ฒŒ ๊น”๋ ค ์žˆ๋‹ค.

Clouds are hanging low in the sky.


์–ด์ด์—†๋‹ค describes that feeling when you are taken by surprise in a negative way. Being dumbfounded is one way of defining the word; the word can be used to describe a broad range of emotions.ย For example, you can use ์–ด์ด์—†๋‹ค when you areย surprised simply because you didn’t expect a particular result, but you can also use ์–ด์ด์—†๋‹ค when you are appalled that such result happened.

์–ด์ด์—†๋‹ค can be incorporated within a sentence as an adjective, etc., but it can also be used as an exclamation by itself.

์–ด์˜์—†๋‹ค as opposed to ์–ด์ด์—†๋‹ค (which is the right spelling) has an extra streak in the second letter (compare ์˜ with ์ด). ‘์–ด์˜’ (the one with the extra streak) actually means royal physician, referring to the house physician that kings and queens used to have in the olden days.

So if you say ์–ด์˜์—†๋‹ค instead of ์–ด์ด์—†๋‹ค, you would be saying that the royal physician isn’t here, and I can’t imagine a context, in which you would need to say that ๐Ÿ˜‚ ย but just know that ์–ด์˜ isn’t just a misspelling of ์–ด์ด andย that it actually means something.


์ •๋ง ์–ด์ด๊ฐ€ ์—†๋‹ค.

That is so annoying / That is absurd.

๊ทธ ์†Œ๋ฌธ์„ ๋“ฃ๊ณ  ๊ทธ๋Š” ์–ด์ด์—†๋‹ค๋Š” ํ‘œ์ •์„ ์ง€์—ˆ๋‹ค.

He looked aghast when he heard the rumour.

์šฐ๋ฆฌ ํŒ€์€ ๊ฒฐ์Šน์ „์—์„œ ์–ด์ด์—†์ด ์ง€๊ณ  ๋ง์•˜๋‹ค.

Our teamย suffered a disappointing defeat in the final.


์˜ค๋žœ๋งŒ means it’s been a while/long time no see! You can just say ์˜ค๋žœ๋งŒ or add a few more letters to make it a more complete phrase addressing a specific ‘audience’, e.g. if it is to a friend, you can say ์˜ค๋žœ๋งŒ์ด์•ผ by adding ์ด์•ผ at the end, which makes it an informal speech. If it is to an older person or someone you don’t talk casually to, you can say ์˜ค๋žœ๋งŒ์ž…๋‹ˆ๋‹ค or ์˜ค๋žœ๋งŒ์ด์—์š” by adding ์ž…๋‹ˆ๋‹ค or ์ด์—์š” at the end, which are formal speech forms.

Pay attention to the second letter! The correct form is the second one with the ใ„ด instead of ใ…… in the second letter. Many tend to use the first one, but it’s wrong. Keep in mind though that there are times you use ์˜ค๋žซ (i.e. ์˜ค๋žซ๋™์•ˆ), but if you are using it in the context I described above, as an exclamation that you haven’t seen someone in a long time, then ์˜ค๋žœ๋งŒ is the right spelling.

์˜ค๋žœ๋งŒ is actually a short form of ์˜ค๋ž˜๊ฐ„๋งŒ, which literally means in a long while (์˜ค๋ž˜ = long / ๊ฐ„๋งŒ = in a while).


์–ด๋–กํ•ด and ์–ด๋–ป๊ฒŒ sound very similar, too, and I think for most of these, it’s the similarity in pronunciation that makes it difficult for people to differentiate the spelling. Again, the main difference here is also the second letter. First one has ๋–ก, which has the bottom consonant ใ„ฑ , and the second one has ๋–ป, which has the bottom consonant ใ…Ž .

์–ด๋–กํ•ด is quite versatile. With an exclamation mark, you can use it as an exclamation by itself, and that is how it’s mostly used. You can use ์–ด๋–กํ•ด to express frustration, not knowing what to do next. You can say it like “oh no…”, or if you add a phrase before or after it and a question mark at the end, you can describe exactly what you are frustrated about. Also, you can use ์–ด๋–กํ•ด to express yourย concern for something that could possibly happen (see example 3).



Oh no / Oh my god!

๋ฐœ๋ชฉ์„ ์‚์–ด์„œ ์•„ํŒŒ. ์–ด๋–กํ•ด?

I sprained my ankle, and it hurts. What should I do?

๋ง‰์ฐจ๋ฅผ ๋†“์น˜๋ฉด ์–ด๋–กํ•˜์ง€?

What if we miss the last train?

์–ด๋–ป๊ฒŒ is different; it is rarely used by itself. ์–ด๋–ป๊ฒŒ means “how”, so if you were to use it by itself, it would be like a follow-up question to, say, someone proposing a plan and you asking “how do you see the plan unfold?” But mostly ์–ด๋–ป๊ฒŒ is used within a sentence. It is quite versatile, too. Below are some of the ways you can use ์–ด๋–ป๊ฒŒ.


๊ทธ๋™์•ˆ ์–ด๋–ป๊ฒŒ ์ง€๋ƒˆ์–ด์š”?

How have you been?

์ด ํ”„๋กœ๊ทธ๋žจ์€ ์–ด๋–ป๊ฒŒ ์„ค์น˜ํ•ด์•ผ ํ•˜๋‚˜์š”?

How do I install this program?

๊ทธ ์˜ํ™”๊ฐ€ ์–ด๋–ป๊ฒŒ ๋๋‚˜๋Š”์ง€ ์ด์•ผ๊ธฐํ•ด ์ค˜

Tell me how the movie ends.

แ„‹แ…คแ„€แ…ต.png์–˜๊ธฐ is a short form of ์ด์•ผ๊ธฐ, which means talk/story/conversation. Both forms are acceptable, though ์–˜๊ธฐ is more informal. ์˜ˆ๊ธฐ is a common misspelling of ์–˜๊ธฐ.

If you look at where ์–˜๊ธฐ is from, it’s easier to remember that that is the correct form. If you look atย ์ด์•ผ๊ธฐ, the second letter has the vowel ใ…‘. The streaks are pointing outwards. So when you shorten it, it’s ์–˜ (ใ…‘ + ใ…ฃ), not ์˜ˆ (ใ…•+ใ…ฃ). Bear in mind that this is not really based on any real evidence that that is why it is shorten this way, but I’ve explained it this way to my students before, and they found it helpful.

So this is it for today! I will come back with five more examples soon ๐Ÿ˜Œ

Examples are from Naver dictionary.


Categories: 2017

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