Grammar of the Week | Honorifics (~(으)시) + 자네 (ja-ne) [Word of the Day]


Alright so I’m starting the week off with a word I stumbled on a few days ago. I’ve heard it before but I honestly couldn’t remember what it meant and everytime I wanted to look it up, I forgot about it altogether.

So now here it is! The elusive word…

자네 ‎(ja-ne) | “you; used generally in addressing a person of distinctly lower status”

Today’s Grammar of the Week is actually a post that should’ve been done a while back. I don’t really know how I got through not talking about this. We talked about the polite forms along with vowels and consonants herehere and here. And so I won’t go back into detail on that.

So let’s talk about (~(으)시).

(~(으)시) is added to the verbs in the sentence when we are talking about someone of higher position than us or talking to someone in a higher position than us. Basically, someone who is in a position of respect. This would include, parents, teachers, boss, older ones, customers, etc.

For example:

“I will study hard!”

In English, this works fine to say to whomever. In Korean, not so much. It all depends on whom you’re speaking with.

  • Friend: “나 열심히 공부해. (na yeolsimhi gongbuhae.)
  • Someone in a position of respect: 저는 열심히 공부합시다. (jeoneun yeolsimhi gongbuhabsida.)

Notice in the second sentence, not only did the pronoun for “I” change, but you also added in ~(으)시 when conjugating the verb 공부하다.

So this is just a quick lesson to keep in mind. It is pretty important if you’re planning on learning Korean fluently and maybe even possibly moving to Korean. I would suggest looking over the lesson here at and paying attention the chart below.

Original Word + ~(으)시다 + ~아/어요 + ~ㅂ/습니다 + ~았/었다
가다 (go) 가시다 가셔요 가십니다 가셨다
공부하다 (study) 공부하시다 공부하셔요 공부하십니다 공부하셨다
알다 (know) 아시다 아셔요 아십니다 아셨다
찾다 (find) 찾으시다 찾으셔요 찾으십니다 찾으셨다
걷다 (walk) 걸으시다 걸으셔요 걸으십니다 걸으셨다
고르다 (select) 고르다 고르셔요 고르십니다 고르셨다
있다 (to be at) 있으시다 있으셔요 있으십니다 있으셨다
짓다 (build) 지으시다 지으셔요 지으십니다 지으셨다

(chart source: howtostudykorean)

So that’s it for this week!


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