Theiling Online    Sitemap    Conlang Mailing List HQ   

Korean politeness levels (& farewells)

From:Yoon Ha Lee <yl112@...>
Date:Friday, September 28, 2001, 3:02
On Thursday, September 27, 2001, at 04:50 PM, laokou wrote:

> speak Korean!) about rice crops or something)) . What I meant to ask, > though, was whether Korean made a distinction between "buh-bye" and > "good-BYE".
Geep! Trust me to miss the real question. To my knowledge, the answer is no (and God knows I've had to say hi/goodbye enough times, what with all the moves my family made between the U.S. and Korea). "Annyeonghaseyo" (or just "annyeong" for young reprobates like me) means literally "be peaceful." You say it both as "hi" and "goodbye." More "elaborate" variations are: Annyeonghigaseyo, or "go peaceful(ly)" Annyeonghigyeseyo, or "stay peaceful(ly)" You say the former to someone who's leaving, the latter to someone who's staying (e.g. your host). Two people might say the first to each other if they met, say, at a restaurant and were both going their separate ways. As a random note, it's also Very Good Korean Etiquette to accompany your guest to the door of your home and say goodbye--if you live in one of those godawful apartment complexes (I live in one now, alas; and they're very common in Seoul) this may mean the door of your particular apt., or even going down with them in the elevator and walking them to the entrance of the building. On the few occasions my folks had (Korean) guests over my sister and I would generally get Roundly Chastised for failing to do this without prompting. And of course you have things like "jal ga" or "jal gara" or "jal gaseyo" ("go well"); or "jal isseo" or "jal isseuseyo," etc. ("stay well"); and my grandma's persistent injunctions to "gongbu manhihara" (study lots--i.e. study hard!). Note to anyone listening in, the light--not dark/velarized--[l] occurs as an allophone of "r" (how the riyeut, usually an alveolar tap, is transcribed most of the time) at the end of a syllable or in certain mutations. (Korean has no velarized [l].) But an "adieu"? Really haven't heard any, and I of all people should have if one existed. ^_^ Jal isseuseyo, YHL


laokou <laokou@...>