Korean is an intriguing language with a vibrant culture. Over 75 million people in countries around the world speak it.
Korean is an Altaic language, sharing many similarities with Japanese and a few with Mongolian. Additionally, Korean is one of the few languages to use a grammatical feature called 'polar questions.'
Korean originally had a writing system based on Chinese characters or Hanja. However, in the 15th century, King Sejong the Great created a unique alphabet called Hangul, now Korea's official writing system.
Some Korean terms have Chinese origin, but others have a native origin. An example of the latter is the term 'annyeong,' derived from the middle Korean word 'an nyong,' meaning 'do/did not.'
Due to the Japanese occupation of Korea from 1910 to 1945, many Japanese loanwords have been absorbed into the Korean language.
Korean slang or 'pyeonji' is commonly used by youth and young adults and is mixed with English without an explicitly grammar-following format.
Korea has two basic structures - Informal and Formal. The informal structure is primarily used between people with equal social status, while the formal structure addresses those of a higher social rank.
Korean has a formal honorific level called 'ingeul,' used to show higher respect when speaking in Korean.
English words are often blended with Korean, creating a 'Konglish' language that has become popular among many Korean speakers.
Korean has multiple dialects, the most common of which is called 'Gyeongsang' and is spoken by about half of the population in South Korea.
Korean has many unique vocabulary words to describe emotions and feelings, and these words often have both literal and metaphorical meanings.