Learn Korean: 주다 VS 드리다


When the pattern verb + 주다/드리다 used in a question or imperative, it expresses the speaker’s request for something. When used in a statement, it expresses the speaker’s offer for someone.

도와 주시겠어요
Will you help me?

도와 줄게.
I will help you.

We attach - 주다 to verbs stems that end with the vowels  and  as in 가다 and 오다. We attach – 주다 to verb stems that end with vowels other than  and  as in열다 and 먹다. All 하다 verbs like 전화하다 and 공부하다 take – 주다.

기사님 빨리  주세요
Sir (taxi driver), please go a little bit faster.

 열어 줄게잠깐만.
I will open the door for you. Wait a moment.

5 후에 전화해 .
Please give me a call after five minutes.

There's one more thing you need to know. 주다 has an honorific form '드리다' which is used when you wish to be highly polite like when you talk to someone superior than you in terms of age or position.

도와 드릴까요?
May I help you?

제가 도와 드리겠습니다.
I will help you.

To further understand 주다 and 드리다, take a look at the illustration below that shows the speaker's requests and offers and the listener's answers.

DIALOGUE 1

준성 책을 읽어 주십시오. (Please read me the book.)
동욱읽어 드리겠습니다. / 읽어 줄게. (Sure.)

DIALOGUE 2

민성가방  빌려 주시겠어요? (Could you lend me your bag?)
경현빌려 드릴게요. / 빌려 줄게. (Sure.)

DIALOGUE 3

진리 주소를  드릴까요? (Shall I write my address?)
요한 주십시오. /  . (Yes please.)


The speaker can be a student talking to his teacher or a clerk talking to his client. The teacher may reply the shorter way apparently because he is socially superior. Whereas it is courteous for the client to respond the long way.