Korean: Top level honorific ㅂ니다/습니다


In Korean, there is another form of honorific expression (ㅂ니다/습니다) in addition to the verb and adjective 요-shape. ㅂ니다 /습니다 are the highest level of honorific expressions. Almost all of them are used in formal occasions such as news reports, workplaces and business meetings.

If you are using Chrome or an Android phone, you can listen to the pronunciation by clicking on the Korean in the table or the Korean in the example sentences in the article!

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

Top level honorific

In Korean, there is another form of honorific expression (ㅂ니다/습니다) in addition to the verb and adjective 요-shape。

Compared to the above-mentioned 요-shape honorifics, ㅂ니다 /습니다 is the highest level of honorifics.
Almost all of them are used in formal occasions such as news reports, workplaces, business meetings and so on.

There are two types of top-level honorific language, ㅂ니다 and 습니다, and the rules of use are as follows.

1. When the stem of a verb or adjective ending with vowel, the word stem will be connected with ㅂ니다.

2. When the stem of a verb or adjective ending with consonant and not "ㄹ", the word stem will be connected with 습니다.

3. When the stem of a verb or adjective ending with consonant "ㄹ",delete "ㄹ" and the word stem will be connected with ㅂ니다.

The following is an example of the rules in order.

For the stem ending with vowel,use ㅂ니다

The stem of a verb or adjective will be connected with ㅂ니다

만나다 -> 만납니다

verb: meet

나 + ㅂ니다 = 납니다。

마시다 -> 마십니다

verb: drink

시 + ㅂ니다 = 십니다

크다 -> 큽니다

adj: big

크 + ㅂ니다 = 큽니다

빠르다 -> 빠릅니다

adj: fast

빠르 + ㅂ니다 = 빠릅니다

For the stem ending with consonant and not "ㄹ",use 습니다

The stem of a verb or adjective will be connected with 습니다

먹다 -> 먹습니다

verb: eat

먹 + 습니다 = 먹습니다

읽다 -> 읽습니다

verb: read

읽 + 습니다 = 읽습니다

적다 -> 적습니다

adj: less

적 + 습니다 = 적습니다

가깝다 -> 가깝습니다

adj: near

가깝 + 습니다 = 가깝습니다

For the stem end with ㄹ,delete "ㄹ" and the use ㅂ니다

Remove "ㄹ" of the stem, and then connect with ㅂ니다

살다 -> 삽니다

verb: live

살 - ㄹ + ㅂ니다 = 삽니다

길다 -> 깁니다

adj: long

길 - ㄹ + ㅂ니다 = 깁니다

멀다 -> 멉니다

adj: far

멀 - ㄹ + ㅂ니다 = 멉니다

Test

1) 보다 -> __니다

look

2) 놀다 -> __니다

play

3) 싸다 -> __니다

cheap

                    Answer:1)봅니다, 2)놉니다, 3)쌉니다

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