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Korean Particles Cheat Sheet (DRAFT) by

This is a draft cheat sheet. It is a work in progress and is not finished yet.

TOPIC 은/ 는

Words ending with a last consonant + -은
Words ending with a vowel + -는

저 (me) +는 (topic)
= 저 as for me/(I am talking) me
내일 일해요.
= As for tomorrow, I work.

In addition to marking topics, 은 [eun] / 는 [neun] has the nuance of “about” something, “as for” something, or even “unlike other things” or “different from other things.”

이거 사과예요.
= (The other things are not apples, but) THIS is an apple.


Nouns ending with a consonant + -으로
Nouns ending in a vowel or the consonant “ㄹ” + -로

(으)로 can mark the ingred­ients that an object is made of, the cause of a disease or something that happened, the direction in which someone is going, or the status or identity of a person that is doing something.

나무 만들다
= To make (somet­hing) with wood.
버스 갈 거예요.
= I’m going to go by bus
한국어 말하다
= To talk in Korean
펜으 쓰다
= To write with a pen


Adding -만 after nouns and pronouns

이것 살 거예요.
= I will only buy this.
아침에는 커피 마셔요.
= I only drink coffee in the morning.

Adding -만 after noun forms of verbs
[noun form of the verb + -만 하다]

보기 할 거예요.
= I will only look
듣기 했어요.
= I only listened


Words ending with a last consonant + -이
Words ending with a vowel + -가

In addition to marking subjects, 이 / 가 has the nuance of “none other than” “nothing but”.

사람1: (thing) 좋아요. = (thing) is good.
사람2: (thing) 좋아요? (thing2)가 좋아요! = (thing) is good? (thing2) IS good!
[사람2 expresses disagr­eement. Thing2 is good, nothing but that]


noun ending in a consonant + 을
noun ending in a vowel + 를

사과 사요 - I buy an apple
= (an apple is bought)


그렇지만= but, however
그런데 = but, however. It can mean “and” as well.

어제 이거 샀어요. 그렇지만 정말 커요.
= I bought this yesterday, but it’s really big.
어제 이거 샀어요. 그런데 정말 커요.
= I bought this yesterday, but/and it’s really big.
그런데 can be used for a wider variety of meanings, and in actual everyday conver­sat­ions, it is much more used than 그렇지만, which is commonly used in written language.

어제 학교에 갔어요. 그런데 일요일이었어요.
= I went to school yesterday. But it was Sunday.
= I went to school yesterday. And by the way, it was Sunday.
= I went to school yesterday. And as I found out after I went, it was Sunday.


그래서 has the meaning of “there­fore” and “so”.

오늘은 비가 왔어요. 그래서 집에 있었어요.
= Today it rained, so I stayed at home.


에 = at, to
에서 = at, in, from

*They can both be translated to "­at", but:
- expresses a location where something “is” or “exists” or a direction that you are going toward.
있어요. = I am at home.
가요. = I’m going (to) home.

-에서 expresses a location where some action is taking place.
에서 일해요. = I work at home.
에서 뭐 해요? = What are you doing at home?
에/에서 can also be used to mark a time, a situation, etc.


The particle -도 is added after the noun.
When -도 needs to be attached to a noun or a pronoun that already has a particle behind it, -도 can replace the particle.
Depending on the location of the particle -도, the meaning of the entire sentence can change.

물 주세요
= Give me water
물 주세요
= Give water to me, as well. (not just to other people)
저 물 주세요
= Please also give some water to me. (water besides other things)
-도 with verbs
= Noun form of the verb + -도 하다

Adding -기 to the verb stem to change a verb into a noun
보다 (to see) > 보기
보기 하다 = to also see, to even see


그리고 is commonly used for linking phrases, but also for linking nouns.
친구를 만났어요. 그리고 밥을 먹었어요.
= I met a friend and ate some rice.

하고 is used like a particle and attached right after a noun without space.
이거하고 이거 주세요.
= Give me this and this.

(이)랑 and 하고 are almost always interc­han­geable, but (이)랑 is more colloquial and casual, not common in formal settings.
우유 빵 샀어요.
= I bought milk and bread.
Both 하고 and (이)랑 can also mean “with”.

친구하고 영화 봤어요.
= I saw a movie with a friend.
누구 갔어요?
= Who did you go with?

*You can add 같이 after 하고 or (이)랑, which means “together” so it means “together with”.
친구하고 같이 영화 봤어요
= I saw a movie with a friend.