[Ask Hyojin] Exclamations in Korean

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Do you have a favorite exclamation in your language, or in Korean?

In this Ask Hyojin episode, Ben and Hyojin talk about Korean exclamations. They picked five Korean exclamations and explain what they mean and when they are used. Enjoy the video! 🙂


Here are the exclamation expressions introduced in this video :

  • 아야! / 아!
  • 우와
  • 엄마야!
  • 엄마~ / 꺄아~
  • 대박 / 헉 / 헐

If you have any questions that you’d like Hyojin to answer in the next episode, leave them in the comment below! You can also browse through and watch all the episodes of Ask Hyojin here!

[Ask Hyojin] Exclamations in Korean
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  • John

    Then Hyojin complains people are mean to her. 🙂

  • John

    Happy Chuseok holiday to everyone.

  • sophia

    It was very interesting & funny, I already took notes about and started to practice…thank u Eonnie 🙂

  • krishna

    우와!!! 재미있어요!
    Ben & Hyojin 선생nim look good together:)

    감사합니다!^_^

  • Dan

    You left out my favorite old-time exclamation: 왔다매! or if you’re really using 전라 dialect, 았다매 with the first syllable drawn out in exasperation. Hope I got the spelling close enough to correct that you can understand it.
    Anyway, I have an Ask Hyojin question. There was a comment on the Marmot’s Hole the other day about how guys who think their Korean is pretty good are actually speaking in an embarrassingly feminine style. I’ve heard warnings about that occasionally, and I worry about it myself because while we visit Korea frequently, living in the States I mostly speak Korean only with my wife (who is a feminine sort of person). The only time I remember hearing Koreans say that about someone’s language was back when I was in Peace Corps and living in Hwasun in Chollanam Do. The guys thought Seoul language, in particular 해요체, was effeminate and would make fun of it, and they tended to use 합쇼체 commonly. Or dialect, of course, but that’s another story. So, Hyojin, please help me with this. I don’t want to sound like a girl, I’m a 67-year-old guy for heaven’s sake! No offense to girls, of course.

    • Yeah, I think one way to avoid the feminine style is to adopt a dialect, especially the 경상 사투리. Even if you just have a light dialect, with the intonation, it seems more manly, I think. I occasionally like to use a heavily exaggerated 대구 dialect at home, just for fun (my wife’s from 대구, but we live in a different region now), and I think the intonation has affected my regular speech, just a bit, and perhaps a little inconsistently, but I think it has helped… I hope!

  • soudabeh

    thank you it was very good 🙂

  • Doris

    Hyojin shii, next time can you do an episode on the jimjilbang culture in korea? Why can people stay there for 24 hrs? Is there really so much things to do inside that you simply can’t leave the place?

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