How to Use Verbs in Korean

In every language verbs are essential to make up a sentence. In Korean, like any language, once you get your head around how they work, they won't be so hard anymore! You should learn how to read Korean before using this article.


  1. Image titled Use Verbs in Korean Step 1
    The verb we are going to deal with first is 가다 (gada) which means to go. This is the basic form of the verb to be able to use it in a sentence we need to conjugate it.
  2. Image titled Use Verbs in Korean Step 2
    To conjugate 가다, you need to take away 다. So now you are left with the stem, 가. Now we conjugate by adding the appropriate endings depending on the person you're talking to or about, and the tense (Past, Present and Future).
  3. Image titled Use Verbs in Korean Step 3
    In Korean as well as the tenses there are three different styles of speech (Formal, Standard and Intimate). All three are needed so we'll get learning them right off the bat.
  4. Image titled Use Verbs in Korean Step 4
    First we will look at the standard style of speech in the present tense. The first and most basic ending we need is 요 (yo). In Korean verbs don't change for the person (I, You, He, She, It, We, You (plural) and They). So when we add on 요 onto the end of 가, we get 가요, which means I go, you go, she goes, etc.
  5. Image titled Use Verbs in Korean Step 5
    We will stick with the standard style of speech for now, so we will look at the past tense. Now we need another ending, ᄊ어요. So, if we add that onto our stem, 가 we get 갔어요. This means, I went, You Went, She went, etc.
  6. Image titled Use Verbs in Korean Step 6
    Now we will look at the future tense in the standard style of speech. Again, our stem is 가 so we need a new ending, ᆯ거예요. So if we add that ending onto our stem we get 갈 거예요. Which means, I will go, You will go, etc.
  7. Image titled Use Verbs in Korean Step 7
    Here is a chart which covers all of the conjugations:
  8. 8
    가다 - To Go
Verb Stem -가 Formal Standard Intimate
Present 갑니다 갔습니다 갈 겁니다
Past 갔습니다 갔어요 갔어
Future 갈 겁니다 갈게요 갈게
Image titled Use Verbs in Korean Step 8

More Verbs

  • 먹다 - To Eat
Verb Stem - 먹 Formal Standard Intimate
Present 먹습니다 먹어요 먹어
Past 먹었습니다 먹었어요 먹었어
Future 먹을 겁니다 먹을게요 먹을게

  • 하다 - To do
Verb Stem - 하 Formal Standard Intimate
Present 합니다 해요
Past 했습니다 했어요 했어
Future 할 겁니다 할게요 할게

하다 is a very important verb because you can add it onto the end of some words to turn them into a verb. E.g, 공부 means study, so if you add 하다 onto the end of that, you get 공부하다 which means to study. These verbs conjugate in exactly the same way as 하다.

  • 쓰다 - To write
Verb Stem - 쓰 Formal Standard Intimate
Present 씁니다 써요
Past 썼습니다 썼어요 썼어
Future 쓸 겁니다 쓸게요 쓸게

  • 읽다 - To read
Verb Stem - 읽 Formal Standard Intimate
Present 읽습니다 읽어요 읽어
Past 읽었습니다 읽었어요 읽었어
Future 읽을 겁니다 읽을게요 읽을게

  • 보다 - To see
Verb Stem - 보 Formal Standard Intimate
Present 봅니다 봐요
Past 봤습니다 봤어요 봤어
Future 볼 겁니다 볼게요 볼게


  • To turn a verb into a negative to just add 안 in front of the verb.

E.g, 안가다 - To Not Go 안먹다 - To Not Eat These verbs conjugate in the same way.

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Categories: Korean