Etymology 1Edit

First attested in the Worin seokbo (月印釋譜 / 월인석보), 1459, as Middle Korean 올ᄒᆞᆫ. The Middle Korean word was both the adnominal form of 옳다 (olta, to be correct; to be proper) and a determiner meaning “right-hand”, thus showing the same semantic shift as English right and many other languages. The two words are still homophones in Modern Korean, but spelled differently and no longer perceived as the same word: 옳은 (oreun, which is correct; which is proper) versus 오른 (oreun, right, right-hand).

Beyond Middle Korean, Jeju ᄂᆞ단 (nawdan, right-side) has been suggested as an ancient root for "right-side" that was displaced by the modern word.


Revised Romanization?oreun
Revised Romanization (translit.)?oleun
Yale Romanization?olun


오른 (oreun)

  1. (dated outside compounds) right, right-hand
    Synonyms: 오른쪽 (oreunjjok), 바른 (bareun) (dated or archaic)
    Antonym: (oen)
Usage notesEdit

Nowadays, the derived noun 오른쪽 (oreunjjok, right-hand side) is used attributively instead of 오른.

Derived termsEdit
Related termsEdit

See alsoEdit

Etymology 2Edit


오른 (oreun)

  1. Past adnominal of 오르다 (oreuda, to ascend)