Possessive Adjectives in Korean

In English, we have what we call possessive adjectives which are derived from personal pronouns. They are used to express possession or ownership- that this thing is owned by someone, vice-versa. They are…

I- my
you- your
we- our
they- their
he- his
she- her
it- its

They are spelled differently, but in Korean we only need one formula to do that and that is by adding the syllable  to the personal pronouns. In our previous note, we learned that Korean and English pronouns work differently, but I will try to give substitutes to demonstrate the use of .

 사람들 사람들의
 남자 남자의
 여자 여자의

Take note that these pronouns are casual only and the first three can be contracted into , and 우리. When 우리 is followed by a noun as in “우리 ”, it’s most likely the possessive form. We never say “we house”, do we?

The pattern is similar in English- “my friend” is “ 친구”, your name is “ 이름”, and “our family” is “우리 가족”. One more thing, Koreans often use “우리” instead of “” to mean “my”.

We can also use “” with nouns which in English is equivalent to “of” or the “apostrophe s”. The “of” can be used for both living and non-living possessors, while the “apostrophe s” is exclusively for living only. I mean, it is wrong to say “the table’s edge” because table is not a living thing. In Korean, it does not matter.

We can attach “” to both living and non living possessors as in “선생님의 주소” (the teacher’s address) or 방의  (the door of the room). If you have observed, Koreans tend to omit the  part which makes it easier to say.

 이름 유진이야.
My name’s Yujin.

우리 가족은 항상 행복합니다
My family is always happy.

 친구 한국인이야?
Is your friend Korean?

 드라마의 제목 뭐였더라
What’s the title of that drama again?

 노래의 가사가 완전 좋아!     
I really love the lyrics of this song.