Wiktionary:About Korean

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1=Language considerations (Korean)
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link={{{imglink}}} This is a Wiktionary policy, guideline or common practices page. This is a draft proposal. It is unofficial, and it is unknown whether it is widely accepted by Wiktionary editors.
Policies – Entries: CFI - EL - NORM - NPOV - QUOTE - REDIR - DELETE. Languages: LT - AXX. Others: BLOCK - BOTS - VOTES.

Basic linking templates


{{ko-l}} exists and was historically commonly used, but it is missing many key parameters. Some editors have been replacing them with {{m|ko}} or {{l|ko}}, which are much more flexible. The only drawback of these generalist templates is that they have no separate parameter for hanja, but the templates have been edited so that {{m|ko|^중국(中國)}}, with the hanja in parentheses, links only to the Korean entry: 중국(中國) (Jungguk).

As seen above, ^ produces capitalization in the romanization. Use it for proper nouns.

When attaching hanja to the entirety of a phrase that ought to be decomposed, the following formatting may be preferable:

  • {{m|ko|[[육진]] [[방언]](六鎭方言)}}, producing 육진 방언(六鎭方言) (yukjin bang'eon), with the hanja outside of any links;

and for individual words in a sentence, the following:

Hyphens are stripped from display but not from links (Module:script utilities):

  • {{m|ko|-꾼}} (-kkun);
  • {{m|ko|빙산-의 일각}}빙산의 일각 (bingsan-ui ilgak)
    • beware! instead, write {{m|ko|빙산의 일각|빙산-의 일각}}빙산의 일각 (bingsan-ui ilgak).

Entry layout and related concerns


Note: This explains how the standard WT:ELE form applies to hangul entries.

The following is a template for a standard (hangul version) entry, with two usage examples and a quotation (neither of which are obligatory):




# [[herbaceous]] [[plant]]s, particularly [[grass]]
#: {{coordinate terms|ko|나무|t=tree, woody plant}}
#: {{uxi|ko|[[밭]][[-에]] '''풀'''[[-이]] [[무성하다]].|The '''grass''' is thick in the field.}}
#: {{uxi|ko|[[스님]][[-들]][[-은]] '''풀'''[[-만]] [[드시다|드신다]].|Buddhist monks only eat '''vegetables'''.}}
#* {{quote-book|ko
    |author={{w2|ko|윤선도|尹善道|tr=Yun Seon-do}}
    |title={{w2|ko|산중신곡|山中新曲|tr=Sanjung Sin-gok}}
    |text=[[나무|나모]][[-도]] [[아니다|아닌]] [[것|거]][[이|시]] '''플'''[[-도]] [[아니다|아닌]] [[것|거]][[이|시]]
    |t=[the bamboo:] that which is not tree, that which is not '''grass'''.

=====Related terms=====
* {{l|ko|푸르다|t=to be green; to be blue}}

=====See also=====
* {{l|ko|잔디|t=lawn grass}}



Alternative forms


Alternative forms in Korean entries include the following:

  • Dialectal forms, if not covered by a {{dialect synonyms|ko}} module.
  • Modern contractions, allomorphs, and alternative forms, such as (geo) for (geot).

Non-alternative forms include the following:

  • North Korean standardized forms should be inputted with {{ko-regional}}, not with "Alternative forms".
  • Hanja should be inputted with headword templates (see below), not with "Alternative forms".
  • Compounds that Koreans variably space or do not space. The standardized form given by the 표준국어대사전, and absent that the variant that appears more common online, is the lemma. The spaced/non-spaced variant is hard-redirected. For example, 미식 축구 (misik chukgu) is a hard redirect to 미식축구 (misikchukgu, American football).

North vs. South Korea


The Wiktionary standard is South Korean Standard Language, 표준어(標準語) (pyojuneo). Spellings and forms found only in the North Korean Standard Language, 문화어(文化語) (munhwa'eo), should be labelled as North Korean.

For North Korean terms that differ only in spelling or in minor details, use the following templates:

For 나무잎 (namu'ip):
{{standard spelling of|ko|나뭇잎|from=North Korea|t=tree leaf}} (if only the spelling is different)
For 닭알 (dalgal):
{{standard form of|ko|달걀|from=North Korea|t=hen's egg}} (if the pronunciation is also different)

For North Korea-specific senses of words found in both Koreas, or for words which exist only in North Korea and do not have a direct Southern equivalent, use {{lb|ko|North Korea}}.

When labelling North Korean terms, there are several things to be aware of:

  • One must be careful with terms that are labeled 북한어 (bukhaneo, North Korean language) in monolingual sources. In some cases, these are terms that have simply failed to enter the South Korean standard language but are also used in the South as well, or were historically used throughout Korea.
  • Northern Korean dialects are not North Korean. They should be labeled with {{lb|ko|Pyongan}}, {{lb|ko|Hamgyong}}, etc.

There is also {{lb|ko|South Korea}} and Category:South Korean, but there is no consensus on whether this category is even necessary. For now (as of 2021), please refrain from adding {{lb|ko|South Korea}}.



The proper use of etymology templates is important for proper categorization and formatting of entries. Most Korean entries currently do not properly use synchronic templates. Please fix them according to the guidelines below whenever they are encountered.

Diachronic templates


For native Korean words first attested before 1900:

First attested in the Seokbo sangjeol (釋譜詳節 / 석보상절), 1447, as Middle Korean 플〮 (Yale: phúl).
  • Certain words are attested before Hangul. In these cases, both the first attestation and the first Hangul attestation should be provided. There is a parameter (hangul=y) for this. An example for 일곱 (ilgop):
{{ko-etym-native|gy|一急|nodot=y}} ({{IPAfont|*/ʔiɪt̚ kiɪp̚/}}). {{ko-etym-native|yb|닐굽〮|nìlkwúp|hangul=y}}
First attested in the Jīlín lèishì (鷄林類事 / 계림유사), 1103, as Late Old Korean 一急 (*/ʔiɪt̚ kiɪp̚/). In the Hangul script, first attested in the Yongbi eocheonga (龍飛御天歌 / 용비어천가), 1447, as Middle Korean 닐굽〮 (Yale: nìlkwúp).
  • For grammatical particles and suffixes where first attestations are not particularly meaningful, it is more convenient to use a format like this, for (da):
From {{inh|ko|okm|-다〮|pos=declarative suffix|tr=-tá}}, from {{inh|ko|oko|如|pos=declarative suffix|tr=*-ta}}.
From Middle Korean 다〮 (-tá, declarative suffix), from Old Korean (*-ta, declarative suffix).

For Sino-Korean words:

For nativised Sino-Korean words which no longer correspond to the character readings or are not given Hanja glosses in standard Korean dictionaries:

  • Use {{ko-etym-nativised}} in conjunction with {{ko-etym-native|nocat=y}} (the parameter in the second template blocks the entry from wrongly being categorized as native Korean words). For example, with 조카 (joka, nephew):
{{ko-etym-nativised|족하|族下|kinsman of a younger generation}} {{ko-etym-native|gci|족하|cwokha|nocat=y}}
Nativisation of the Sino-Korean word 족하 (族下, jokha, “kinsman of a younger generation”). First attested in the Gyechuk ilgi (癸丑日記 / 계축일기), c. 1600 , as Early Modern Korean 족하 (Yale: cwokha).

For recent borrowings:

  • Use {{bor|ko|[origin language]}}, usually {{bor|ko|en}} for English and {{bor|ko|ja}} for Japanese. With 블링블링 (beullingbeulling):
From {{bor|ko|en|bling bling}}.
From English bling bling.

Synchronic templates

For 말하다 (malhada):
{{ko-etym-native|yb|말〯ᄒᆞ다〮|mǎl-hòtá|nodot=y}}, equivalent to modern {{af|ko|말|-하다|pos2=[[light verb]]|t1=word|t2=to [[do]]}}.
First attested in the Yongbi eocheonga (龍飛御天歌 / 용비어천가), 1447, as Middle Korean 말〯ᄒᆞ다〮 (Yale: mǎl-hòtá), equivalent to modern (mal, word) + 하다 (-hada, to do, light verb).
For 불쏘시개 (bulssosigae):
{{af|ko|불|[[쑤시다|쑤시−]]|-개|pos3=inanimate agentive suffix|t1=fire|t2=to poke|t3=-er}}.
(bul, fire) + 쑤시− (to poke) + (-gae, -er, inanimate agentive suffix).
  • Many Korean suffixes are homophonous. These should be differentiated with {{senseid}} and the |id= parameter. Otherwise there is no correct categorization.
For 멍멍이 (meongmeong'i):
{{suffix|ko|멍멍|-이|id2=noun suffix|pos1=onomatopoeia|pos2=noun-deriving suffix|t1=woof-woof}}.
멍멍 (meongmeong, woof-woof, onomatopoeia) + (-i, noun-deriving suffix).
  • Use {{univerbation|ko}} for words derived from verbal adnominal + noun, such as 쓸데 (sseulde).
  • For causative, passive, emphatic, or honorific verbs derived by a suffix attaching directly to the stem, use {{ko-etym-verbal-suffix}}.
For 먹이다 (meogida):
{{ko-etym-verbal-suffix|먹|to eat|이|causative}}.
(meok-, to eat) + (-i-, causative suffix) + (-da, suffix conventionally given for citation forms).
For 가져오다 (gajeooda):
{{ko-compound-verb|가지|to have|오다|to come|inf=y}}
가지 (gaji-, to have) + (-eo, infinitive suffix) + 오다 (oda, to come).



Use {{ko-IPA}}. For Busan tone, use {{ko-tone}}.

If you are aware of non-Seoul IPA pronunciations, you can currently add them manually with {{IPA|ko}}, as has been done at 바닥 (badak). Eventually it is hoped that they can be inputted as {{ko-IPA}} parameters.

Part of speech


The headword line should use one of the following:

  • {{ko-noun}} for 명사 (myeongsa, “nouns”)
  • {{ko-verb}} for 동사 (dongsa, “Korean verbs”), explicitly not for 형용사 (hyeong'yongsa, “hyeongyongsa”)
  • {{ko-adj}} for 형용사 (hyeong-yongsa, “Korean adjectives”), even when the English translation seems to indicate a verb
    • {{ko-adj-form}} for inflected forms of Korean adjectives
  • {{ko-adv}} for 부사 (busa, “adverbs”)
  • {{ko-pos}} for all others

Definitions and example usage follows the headword line.

===Part of speech===
{{ko-pos|part of speech}}

# definition

Conjugation (for verbs and adjectives)


To help searches find entries, conjugation templates should produce forms for each speech level:

  • 하소서체 (e.g. 하나이다, 하시나이다): Extremely formal and polite.
    Traditionally used when addressing a king, queen, or high official; now used only in historical dramas and the Bible
  • 하십시오체 (e.g. 합니다, 하십니다): Formal and polite.
    Used commonly between strangers, among male co-workers, by TV announcers, and to customers.
  • 하오체 (e.g. 하오, 하쇼, 하시오): Formal, of neutral politeness
    Spoken form only used nowadays among some older people.
  • 하게체 (e.g. 하네, 하시네): Formal, of neutral politeness
    Generally only used by some older people when addressing younger people, friends, or relatives
  • 해라체 (e.g. 한다, 하신다): Formal, of neutral politeness or impolite
    Used to close friends, relatives of similar age, or younger people; also used almost universally in books, newspapers, and magazines; also used in reported speech ("She said that...")
  • 해요체 (e.g. 해요, 하세요): Informal and polite
    Used mainly between strangers, especially those older or of equal age. Traditionally used more by women than men, though in Seoul many men prefer this form to the Hapshoche (see above).
  • 해체 (e.g. 해, 하여, 하셔): Informal, of neutral politeness or impolite
    Used most often between close friends and relatives, and when addressing younger acquaintances.

Usage notes


Detailed information about the usage or connotations of a word. Since Korean differs significantly from English, a word may require significant explication about how the sense of a word differs from its simple English translation.





Derived terms


Terms related to this one linguistically, not necessarily derived from it. Derived terms are related terms so if you have both, you may wish to combine them under Related terms.

See also

  • word of interest somehow pertaining to this one
  • another word of interest

Considerations about Korean language entries




Korean is written in hangul and hanja (CJKV) script. Romanizations (transliterations into the Latin alphabet) are included in Korean entries to help readers whose native script is the Latin script, but romanizations of Korean do not meet Wiktionary:Criteria for inclusion as Korean isn't written in the Latin script. There are rare examples of loanwords from Latin script languages where the original Latin orthography is retained. For example PC is not a "romanization", but rather a "loanword" from English, and used in actual Korean texts.

Parts of speech


It remains to be resolved how Wiktionary should classify Korean parts of speech. A suggestion is to follow the path set in Wiktionary:About Japanese, i.e. to align the parts of speech listed here with to the common Korean way of teaching grammar. To support such classification, we may want to create templates for each part of speech, which could consistently link to an explanatory page with alternatives as to how to classify that part of speech. Additionally, for 의태어 (uitaeeo, mimetic words) and 의성어 (uiseong'eo, onomatopoeia), the POS should be "Ideophone" and not "Adverb".

The Korean Wiktionary (at ko:분류:품사, "Category:Parts of speech") and w:Korean parts of speech both list the following parts of speech:

w:Korean parts of speech also lists the following "major classes of words or morphemes" (somebody please confirm with a reliable source):

Verb forms of nouns


Many nouns in Korean have a verb form that is created by simply appending 하다 (hada). Because this type of verb is so closely associated with the noun stem, each form should refer to the other with the {{also}} template used at the top of the Korean section, before the first listed part of speech.

Hangul, Romanization, and English translation


To accommodate the diverse needs and fluency levels of readers, each Korean phrase or term should be expressed in at least three forms: a hangul version, a Revised Romanization version, and an English language translation. The additional verbosity is necessary to produce a general-purpose resource. A template, {{ko-l}}, exists for this purpose. The 2000 South Korean Revised Romanization (an apostrophe is used for separating different syllables, instead of a hyphen stated in the official romanization system) is currently the Wiktionary standard. Others in use include McCune–Reischauer romanization and Yale romanization.

Historical forms


Old Korean (up to 1300), Middle Korean (up to 1600), and Early Modern Korean (up to 1900) entries should have their own language header. See more on Wiktionary:About Korean/Historical forms.



Unicode has up to four different code points for each individual jamo, and redirects can be added to send users who enter search for one code point to the lemma entry.



Category:Korean language is the root category in the Wiktionary category tree for Korean terms. All other Korean-related categories are ultimately within this category. Most Korean entries should be categorized in one or more of the more specific categories below. Individual words should only be in this top level category if they are about the Korean language (e.g. the entry for hangul).

Words are categorized properly in the part of speech and script form categories automatically by the POS templates ({{ko-noun}}, {{ko-adv}}, and {{ko-pos}}). Other categories are set manually by adding [[Category:...]], e.g. [[Category:Native Korean words]].

Regional Korean


Entries for specifically North Korean words are currently placed in Category:North Korean, South Korean words are currently placed in Category:South Korean.

See also