Open main menu



  • IPA(key): /s/
  • Actual realisation:
    (between vowels) IPA(key): [s]
    (before /i/ or /j/) IPA(key): [s]
    (before stops, or word-finally) IPA(key): [t̚]
    (before nasals) IPA(key): [n]
  • (file)

Etymology 1Edit

The traditional account[1] holds that its form is the outline of an incisor, 齒形 (it is the shape of the four teeth in the Chinese pictographic character for incisor, 齒).

Gari Ledyard proposes that (s) was derived from (j) by removing the top stroke.



  1. 시옷 (siot, “siot”), a jamo (letter) of the alphabet of the Korean writing system, hangeul; the sibilant phoneme (/s/)
Usage notesEdit

In the North Korean order, (s) is the seventh jamo, and in the South Korean order the tenth.

Derived termsEdit
  • (j) (in traditional account)
  • (ch)
Coordinate terms

Etymology 2Edit

  This entry lacks etymological information. If you are familiar with the origin of this term, please add it to the page per etymology instructions. You can also discuss it at the Etymology scriptorium.
Particularly: “Interesting similarity in form and function to the genitive in the Germanic languages, the third and fourth noun classes in Latin, and the long-vowel stems in Sanskrit, among others. Are there any respectable linguistic theories mentioning a possible PIE connection? Or is this just coincidence? Also, likely cognate with the rare and ancient -s- genitive infix in Japanese, as in 春雨 (harusame).”

From Middle Korean *ㅅ ('s, of), from Old Korean *叱 ('s, of).


-- (-s-)

  1. The sai-siot (사이시옷), genitive marker sometimes placed between a vowel-final syllable of the first constituent and a syllable of the second constituent when forming compounds.
    햇빛 (haetbit, “sunlight”) - from (hae, “sun”) + ㅅ + (bit, “light”)
    고춧가루 (gochutgaru, “chili pepper flakes”) - from 고추 (gochu, “chili pepper”) + ㅅ + 가루 (garu, “powder, flour”)
    어젯밤 (eojetbam, “last night”) - from 어제 (eoje, “yesterday”) + ㅅ + (bam, “night”)
    나뭇잎 (namunnip, “tree leaf”) - from 나무 (namu, “tree”) + ㅅ + (ip, “leaf”)


  1. ^ Hunmin Jeongeum Haerye “Explanations and Examples of the Proper Sounds for the Instruction of the People” (1446), defining and explaining the script now known as 한글 (han-geul, Great script, Korean script) in South Korea and 조선글 (joseon-geul, Korean script) in North Korea.