Korean Cognates/loanwords

I just opened a comedy special from Netflix and the first few lines have a lot of cognates/loanwords for example

English loan words are used very frequently, especially in the academic and higher education fields. Many terms that have been in English for years do not translate particularly well into Korean, and many Korean translations are followed by the original English term in parentheses.

In regular life, I think it can appear somewhat pretentious when Koreans use too many English loan words (Konglish) in daily conversation. This is mostly due to the connection to academia, but you will hear a few words quite frequently in daily conversation. If you go to a cafe (카페 [까페]) you will find nearly 100% of the items are just transliterated, and if you’re around Seoul, there will also be actual English on the menu next to the Korean transliteration. One thing to keep in mind is that people will actually have trouble understanding you if you say these words with regular English pronunciation (people may understand you as well). It would be the equivalent of someone speaking in English to you, but at an Italian restaurant suddenly switching an Italian accent for all of the food items when nobody else speaks Italian… It’s just jarring and confusing. If you’re speaking in Korean, say the whole phrase/word with your Korean pronunciation. Sometimes you feel weird as a beginner, but when you think about it more, it’s very normal and even strange to mix the two when you’re trying to convey meaning as clearly as possible and assuming the other party only shares one common language.

One thing about Konglish words is that they do not all have the same meaning as the English words. Another thing that happens is words get borrowed and then shortened into 1-2 syllables. If you want some examples of this, look at the subtitles of a show like Hospital Playlist on netflix. Many of the medical terms are directly from the English terminology (normally based on Greek/Latin) and then shortened.


Thanks iMeoWi always there to save the day haha. I will make sure I say and get used to these words with the Korean phonology. I had a quick question about an idiom I ran into any just wanted to run it by a senior member of the Korean language community. U know why this means like making a fuss?

한 사람은 아주 작살이 낫는데 This is supposed to mean someone got their A** kicked but idk how saving harpoon means that. You know of a place to look this up or any other idiomatic type phrases at other than just a general google search.

Also you just use naver/google for looking up definitions etc. right? any secret stash websites you could hook me up with lol thanks again. Cuz naver seems to be better from Korean to English then vise versa lol.

Take a look at https://www.naver.com/ 메일, 카페, 블로그, 쇼핑, 뉴스, and even 웹툰

Haha good point.