Grammar of the Week | ~밖에 (Nothing but) + 밖 (bakk) [Word of the Day]


Alright so this week, I have decided two things, the first is we’re going to jump into a new topic for the Grammar of the Week. This is something I’ve kinda wanted to discuss for a while now and I’ve just had it bookmarked and forgot about it. The second is, the theme will be things related to the outside, such as “sky”, “weather”, etc. But there is something different this time, I will do more to incorporate familiar verbs with the words. The idea now is to show verb usage with vocabulary.

Let’s get started!

밖 (bakk) | “outside”


  • 나는 밖에 나가고 싶어. (naneun bakke nagago sip-eo.) | “I want to go outside.”
    • 밖 has the location particle 에 added because it is still typically a location even if the place outside isn’t specified. 
    • This sentence contains both a verb, 나가다 (we’ll discuss this word later) and an adjective 싶다. [Both verbs and adjectives come at the end of a sentence as sentences in Korean follow the sentence structure of either (Subject-Verb), (Subject-Object-Verb) or (Subject-Adjective).]


And now for the Grammar of the Week!

So this week we’re talking about ~밖에. You may have noticed that it’s also the Word of the Day. I did that to discuss one aspect of this word, while it does mean “outside”, it also takes on another meaning when used in a different context. It takes on the additional meaning of “nothing but”.

But how?

Well, in the example for the WOTD, it’s used as a location. However, it can be used as a particle. When this happens, the meaning changes as it is added on to a noun and it becomes, “Nothing but (noun)”.


  • 사랑밖에 | “Nothing but love”
  • 친구밖에 | “Nothing but friends”

Now, you may have noticed that I did a really quick review of sentence structures. That’s important when using this particle because once it is added to the noun, the sentence has to contain a negative verb or adjective.


  • 나 사랑밖에 없어요. | “I have nothing but love.”
    • 없어요 is the negative adjective in this sentence. If you remember, 없다 is the opposite of 있다.
    • 있다 | “to have”
    • 없다 | “to not have; without”

Alright so that’s as far as I’ll go this week on this topic. Next week, we’re going to talk about using this with counters and different examples.



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