1000 Korean words for everyday use – Basic vocabulary from K-dramas #69

Welcome back. This is the 69th post in the series of 1000 Korean words for everyday use by analyzing the word frequency of more than 1,000 episodes of Korean dramas.

Today, let’s explore the meaning and context of 5 key Korean words “겁, 두렵다, 설마, 돌다, 느끼다” with sample sentences.
Click the play button below to listen to all the words and sample sentences in this post.


Basic Korean words : 겁, 두렵다, 설마, 돌다, 느끼다


341. 겁 [geop] – fear

– 겁 [geop] refers to fear, the feeling of being afraid of something.
– 겁나다 [geop-na-da] is used to describe a situation or thing that is scary or frightening.
– 겁쟁이 [geop-jaeng-i] refers to a coward, someone who is easily frightened or afraid.
– Like 겁쟁이, 쟁이 can be attached to certain nouns to mean someone who does that particular thing (the noun to which 쟁이 is attached), especially if they do it often or are known for doing that thing (whatever the noun is). Note that 쟁이 is usually attached to specific nouns, but sometimes speakers can create their own compound word by attaching 쟁이 to a noun that it isn’t normally attached to, although this may sound awkward depending on the word.

Example sentences:

무서워서 겁이 나요. I’m afraid because I’m scared.
그 장면은 정말 겁나게 느껴졌어요. That scene was really scary.
넌 겁쟁이야. You’re a coward.


342. 두렵다 [du-ryeop-da] – to be scared, afraid

– 두렵다 [du-ryeop-da] means “to be scared” or “to be afraid”. It is used to express fear or anxiety about something.

Example sentence:

높은 곳에서 내려다보는 게 두려워요. I’m afraid of looking down from high places.


343. 설마 [seol-ma] – surely not, it can’t be

– 설마 [seol-ma] is used to express disbelief or scepticism about something that seems improbable or unexpected. It can be translated as “surely not” or “it can’t be”.

Example sentence:

설마 그럴 리가 없어요. Surely, that can’t be true.


344. 돌다 [dol-da] – to turn, to revolve

– 돌다 [dol-da] means ‘to turn’ or ‘to revolve’. It describes the action of turning or moving in a circle.

Example sentence:

지구는 태양 주위를 돕니다. The earth goes round the sun.


345. 느끼다 [neu-kki-da] – to feel, to sense

– 느끼다 [neu-kki-da] means “to feel” or “to sense” with one’s senses or emotions.
– 느낌 [neu-kkim] is its noun form and refers to the feeling or sense of something.

Example sentences:

전 행복을 느낄 수 있었어요. I could feel the happiness.
느낌이 어때? How does it feel?


Grammar & Study Resources

설마 [seol-ma] – surely not, it can’t be:

설마 [seol-ma] is used to express disbelief, scepticism or surprise at something that seems unlikely or unexpected. It’s often used when the speaker finds a situation or statement hard to believe.

Example sentences:
설마 그럴 리가 없어요. This can’t be true.
설마 그렇게 잘 할 수 있을까요? I can’t believe they can do this so well.
설마 그가 그렇게 말했을 리가 없어요. He couldn’t have said that.

“설마” is often followed by a verb ending in “-ㄹ 리가 없다”, which means “there’s no way that…” or “it can’t be…”. This pattern reinforces the expression of disbelief.
“설마” is a colloquial expression and adds a sense of surprise or doubt to the sentence.
Remember that “설마” is used in informal situations and conversations. It’s a versatile expression that can be used to express surprise, doubt or disbelief in a variety of contexts.

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