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Learn Korean Language Lesson 6 – Korean Question Word – What

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Learn Korean Lesson 6 - Korean Question Word - WhatContinue from Learn Korean Language Lesson 5 – Korean Sentence Endings Expressing Identification, in this Learn Korean Language Lesson 6 we will learn Korean question word – 뭐 [ mwo ]. It has the same usage as English question word – what. 뭐 is use to form Korean interrogative sentence (question). Use it like English word – what to ask questions such as what is this? what is that? what is your name? 무엇 [ mu-eot ] is same as 뭐 but used in formal writing. 무엇 can be used with 이에요/입니까 to form questions.

Korean Question Word – What

뭐 is always used together with 예요 to ask questions as 뭐 is a Korean character ending with a vowel (without batchim). We have learn Korean sentence endings expressing identification – 이에요/예요 in Learn Korean Lesson 5 and we knew that 이에요/예요 has the same usage as English word – is, hence, when asking what is this, what is that, 뭐 will be used together with 예요. Do you remember what is batchim? (Refer Korean Consonants 3). In Comparison of Korean and English, we knew that Korean verb comes last, the order of the Korean sentence is subject, object, verb. Therefore, 뭐예요 goes at the end of the sentences. There are many English speakers will try to emphasize 뭐 as they would stress the word what in English. But in Korean, you tone should rise a bit at the end.

Colloquial Conversation

  • 이게 뭐예요? [ i-ge-mwo-ye-yo ] – What is this?
  • 저게 뭐예요? [ jo-ge-mwo-ye-yo ] – What is that?
  • 그게 뭐예요? [ geu-ge-mwo-ye-yo ] – What is that?
  • 이름이 뭐예요? [ i-reum-i-mwo-ye-yo ] – What is your name?
  • 직업이 뭐예요? [ ji-geo-bi-mwo-ye-yo ] – What is your occupation?

Formal writing

  • 이것이 무엇입니까? [ i-geo-si-mu-eot-im-ni-gga ] – What is this?
  • 저것이 무엇입니까? [ jeo-geo-si-mu-eot-im-ni-gga ] – What is that?
  • 그것이 무엇입니까? [ geu-geo-si-mu-eot-im-ni-gga ] – What is that?
  • 이름이 무엇입니까? [ i-reum-i-mu-eot-im-ni-gga ] – What is your name?
  • 직업이 무엇입니까? [ ji-geo-bi-mu-eot-im-ni-gga ] – What is your occupation?

You may need to know more Korean vocabulary in order to answer Korean question word 뭐, such as Korean Vocabulary – Occupations and Korean Vocabulary – Things. Continue to Learn Korean Language Lesson 7 – Korean Question Word – Which.

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