If you’ve heard of the group LOONA then you’re already familiar with Go Won. But if you haven’t, Go Won is the 11th member of the kpop girl group LOONA. She made her debut back in January and this is her solo introduction project. I picked this one to spotlight because when I first heard it I thought she was a solo artist and was so excited. But now I’m even more excited to have a new group to listen too since all my favs have disbanded.
LOONA officially debuts August 2018!
Okay so this week, we’re going to be looking at how to ask, “What does (x) mean?” Maybe you’ve been in the middle or reading something and as you’re reading it, you can’t quite figure out what a word or phrase meant. For me, it was a day I was reading a paragraph and at the end of one sentence was the word 때문입니다. I was struggling to figure it out and after searching to make this make sense I ultimately ended up asking a friend.
For those wondering, 때문입니다 means “because” or “because of” it’s kinda like a transitional word.
So how do you ask someone, “What does (x) mean” in Korean?
- 이것은 무엇입니까? | “What does this mean?”
Now there is another way that people use at times. I don’t personally like using this way because it can get a little misconstrued.
There are two ways:
- 무슨 말이야? | “What does that mean?”
- This way is more personal and less informal. Used with friends or close associates.
- 무슨 말이에요? | “What does that mean?”
- This way is more formal. Used with people who are older or those who you don’t know as well.
So how can this one get misconstrued? Well because it depends on how you use it. They literally mean “what does that mean?” And that can be interpreted as, “What are you saying? I don’t understand what you meant by that.” or “What are you trying to say?” rather than, “What does (this word) mean?”
However, personal preference. You can use that way as well.
So how would you use 이것은 무엇입니까?
- 고양이가 쥐를 잡았습니다. | “The cat caught the mouse.”
- Let’s say you were looking at this sentence and had no idea what 잡았습니다 meant. You would ask a friend:
- 이것은 잡다 무엇입니까?
- Of course you could just use the word as it is conjugated but I just use the verb as is.
- 어색한 (eosaeghan)| “awkward”
Yes, this is the correct way to say awkward. But as I’ve told you guys in the past, there are always different ways to say the things you’re used to saying in English… in Korean. One of those many things is “awkward.” Yes, you could use 어색한 (eosaeghan) but this video does a great job at explaining other ways to say a situation or person is awkward.