The Plural Form in Korean


Dogs. Cats. People. Students. Eyes. What do these words have in common? They’re in the plural form. That’s right, 2+ of everything. But what about these?

개. 고양이. 사람. 학생.

You could read that as “Dog, Cat, Person, Student” – or you could interpret it as “Dogs, Cats, People, Students” depending on the context that I put it in.

In Korean, the official plural form comes as the addition of “-들” to a word, but it’s not used that frequently in everyday conversation. Can you still use it to clarify what you mean? Yes. Can you use it even if you don’t need to clarify because the context makes it already obvious? Yes. It’s not wrong to use “-들,” it’s just not as common as throwing in 사람 and meaning people, or 개 and meaning dogs. (Counter words and numbers help clarify the plural as well.) Continue reading