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Episode 12: Present Tense Conjugation

다들 안녕! 마가리타입니당~!

So I've gotten lots of requests to talk about conjugation from you guys and I'm finally committing to this very complex topic and I'm planning to dive deep into it in the next couple of weeks, discussing present, past, future and other types of Korean verb/adjective conjugations :)

This week, we'll start nice and slow, focusing on present tense conjugation!


All verbs and adjectives have an infinitive form (the way they appear in a dictionary) and this form includes a stem and a 다 ending. In order to conjugate verbs/adjs we take the stem of the word and substitute the 다 ending for the correct conjugation ending.

There are three general groups that verbs/adjectives can be divided into, depending on the way they are conjugated in PRESENT tense:

Verbs/adjs ending on ~아요, ~해요 or ~어요.

1. ~아요 (when the vowel in the last syllable ends on ㅏor ㅗ)

살다 --> 살아요 (to live)

놀다 --> 놀아요 (to play/enjoy yourself/chill)

만나다 --> 만나요* (to meet)

*just add the 요 because the last syllable doesn't have a consonant at the end and it ends on an ㅏ

오다 -- 와요* (to come)

보다 -- 봐요* (to see)

*combine the ㅗ and the ㅏ into a diphthong

2. ~해요 (when verbs/adjs end on ~하다)

하다 --> 해요 (to do)

좋아하다 --> 좋아해요 (to like)

행복하다 --> 행복해요 (to be happy)

공부하다 --> 공부해요 (to study)

요리하다 --> 요리해요 (to cook)

3. ~어요 (verbs/adjs whose last syllables end on anything apart from ㅏ or ㅗ)

먹다 -- 먹어요 (to eat)

입다 -- 입어요 (to wear)

마시다 -- 마셔요 (to drink) [ㅣand ㅓ are transformed into ㅕ]

가르치다 -- 가르쳐요 (to teach)

세우다 -- 세워요* (to lift)

*ㅜ and ㅓ form a diphthong

쓰다 -- 써요* (to write)

*the strong vowel ㅓ takes the place of the weaker vowel ㅡ

슬프다 -- 슬퍼요 (to be sad)

바쁘다 -- 바빠요* (to be busy)

*this is an interesting case because logically it should be 바뻐요 because the last syllable of the stem ends on an ㅡ, however because the stem has multiple syllable we take the strong syllable from the preceding syllable (바), which is ㅏ and add that makes it 바빠요

Phew... that was a lot of information for our first conjugation video, but trust me if you understand this really well, the rest of the conjugation in past or future tenses will be easy breezy for you guys. I promise! :D

P.S. A lot of you have expressed your annoyance with the background music and how it is distracting you from focusing on the actual content of the video so this time I'm trying to go background music free. Let me know what you think :)

If you have any questions let me know!

Much love,


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