What does byun mean in Korean

Learn Korean: 6. What is 있다?

The word "있다”Has two meanings and both are very important for learning the Korean language.

있다 = have

있다 = to be in one place

You learned in Lesson 4 that 이다 can act as an adjective. 있다 (have) also acts as an adjective. Why is that important?

You also learned that sentences with an adjective have no object. That means you don't have a word with the particle ~ 를 / 을 can connect if the predicate of this sentence is an adjective. (because ~ 를 / 을 presupposes an object in the sentence)

있다 acts as an adjective and therefore we cannot have an object in such a sentence. To get out of this linguistic mess, we can append ~ 이 / 가 to the object instead of ~ 를 / 을 in sentences with 있다. Hopefully the following examples will make it clearer.

나는 펜 이 있다 = I have a pen

The conjugated form with politeness:

(나는 펜 이 있어 / 저는 펜 이 있어요)

나는 차가 있다 = I have a car

The conjugated form:

(나는 차가 있어 / 저는 차가 있어요)

나는 잡지 가 있다 = I have a magazine.

The conjugated form:

(나는 잡지 가 있어 / 저는 잡지 가 있어요)

What makes 있다 so difficult is the second meaning of the word. Because it can also mean to be in a certain place.

In Lesson 3 you learned that the particle ~ is used to mark time and place in a sentence. Therefore, “~ 에” is often found in sentences with “있다” to indicate the location of something or someone.

For example:

I'm at school.

I 는 school am in.

나는 + 학교 + 있다

나는 학교에 있다 = I'm in school.

The conjugated form plus courtesy form:

나는 학교에 있어 / 저는 학교에 있어요


나는 캐나다 에 있다 = I am in Canada.

(나는 캐나다 에 있어 / 저는 캐나다 에 있어요)

In the following example sentences we will look at what influence the correct and incorrect use of 있다 and the particles can have.

나는 학교있다 = I have a school. In theory, of course, that makes sense. But normally you want to say something like this:

나는 학교 있다 = I'm in school.

Correct: 나는 잡지 있다 = I have a magazine.

Wrong: 나는 잡지 있다 = I'm at the magazine. (That doesn't make any sense.)

In addition, we can use location indicators to express exactly where something or someone is. The most commonly used are:

안 = in

위 = on

밑 = under

옆 = next to

뒤 = behind

앞 = before

These words are placed after the noun. The particle “~ 에” is then attached directly to this location indicator. For example:

학교 앞에 = in front of school

사람 뒤에 = behind the person

옆 에 = next to the house

저 건물 뒤에 = behind the building

These constructions can act as location information in the sentence:

나는 학교 에 있다 = I'm in school.

나는 학교 앞에 있다 = I'm in front of school.

The conjugated form with politeness:

나는 학교 앞에 있어 / 저는 학교 앞에 있어요

Let's look at a few examples. Please note that this is the non-conjugated form of the sentence. This is for a better understanding of the sentence structure. In brackets you will find the conjugated form with the polite form. I do it because we haven't dealt with the conjugation and the politeness yet and these would only lead to confusion.

나는 학교 뒤에 있다 = I'm behind the school.

(나는 학교 뒤에 있어 / 저는 학교 뒤에 있어요)

나는 학교 옆 에 있다 = I'm next to the school.

(나는 학교 옆 에 있어 / 저는 학교 옆 에 있어요)

나는 은행 안에 있다 = I'm in the bank.

(나는 은행 안에 있어 / 저는 은행 안에 있어요)

개 는 집 안에 있다 = The dog is in the house.

(개 는 집 안에 있어 / 개 는 집 안에 있어요)

고양이 는 의자 밑에 있다 = The cat is under the chair.

(고양이 는 의자 밑에 있어 / 고양이 는 의자 밑에 있어요)

If you need practice for this lesson to consolidate what you have learned, check out our Korean Textbook.

On to the next lesson.

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