6 Fun & Memorable Facts About the Korean Language
A language isolate is a language that has no genetic relationship with any other language in the world. This means that it was not born from another language, and of all the language isolates in the world, Korean is, by far, the largest.
That’s not the only fun fact about the Korean Language.
Below, you’ll find a number of useful facts about the Korean language that should give you a better appreciation of the language as you try learning Korean in Singapore.
1. Korean Language Is Heavily Influenced by Chinese
While the Korean language is completely different from Chinese in terms of grammar, the two languages do share a lot of similarities.
For example, nearly half of Korean words (around 60%) have Chinese origin. That’s nearly double of the purely Korean words (35%), while the rest of the words that make up the Korean language (5%) are loanwords that are borrowed from other languages.
2. Korean Is An SOV language
Or, better known as, Subject-Object-Verb. This means that the verb always comes last, unlike in English where the verb always comes after the subject and before the object.
3. Korean Alphat Day
Korean Alphabet Day is celebration every 9th of October in South Korea – and 15th January in North Korea.
It is widely considered as an extremely important event as it celebrates the invention of Hangul and its official proclamation as the official alphabet of the Korean language. It’s known as Hangul Proclamation Day in South Korea. Meanwhile, North Koreans celebrate the holiday as Chosŏn’gŭl Day.
4. North and South Korea Speak Different Languages
Because of how long it’s been the two countries have existed as separate entities, their language is also different from each other.
As a result, the languages used in North and South Korea have evolved to have their own unique nuances, from different pronunciations, grammatical rules, and even vocabularies.
5. The Korean Alphabet is Fairly New
While the Korean language has already existed for a long time, the alphabet, known as the Hangul, wasn’t formalised until the 15th century.
Prior to its formalisation, Koreans used Chinese characters. It was also not until World War II had ended that Hangul was officially adopted as the country’s official alphabet, which was also when Korea finally gained its independence and became free from being a colony of the Empire of Japan.
6. Koreans Use Two Different Counting Systems
Koreans use a different set of vocabulary to count small and large numbers.
For smaller numbers, such as age, the number of objects, and telling time by the hour, Koreans use the native Korean vocabulary. However, this system only goes up to 99. To express numbers that go above 99 and larger measurements like money and dates, Koreans use a number system of Chinese origin.
As a language spoken by nearly 80 million people from all over the world, there’s no better time to learn the language than today. But, because of its slightly different script, it’s often recommended to enroll in a Korean language school Singapore to learn the language properly, especially for English speakers.
There are many Korean lessons in Singapore, tailor-made by trained and professional native speakers to help English speakers learn the language in the most efficient way.