"The child throws the ball."
Translation:아이가 공을 던집니다.
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Here's a bit of info on how I understand the difference:
Think of 가 and 이 as being used to bring in new information, and 은/는 being used to connect what's already known to the new information.
In this sentence: 남자는 메시지가 있습니다 (The man has a message), you probably would've already known about the man with past context.
Maybe you're sitting in your office and your secretary comes in. "There's a man outside wanting to see you." They say. There would've likely been a 가 attached to the man, since it's new information that he exists.
"What does he want?" You reply.
"He (the man) has a message./남자는 메시지가 있습니다." The secretary replies. You already know about the man. He's not new information. What's new information is the message. So, 'message' is the item that will have 가 attached to it, putting more emphasis on it than the man. The man will just have 는 attached to it to attach it to the next word.
I learned this concept from Japanese, and from what I've seen so far, it seems to be the same in Korean. I never understood it when people just said "as for (item), etc. etc." when explaining は, which in Korean is 은/는, and it seems that sentence is popping up here too. I didn't even know what that meant! As for the man? How does "as for..." tell me when to use は or が (은/는 or 가/이)?
I feel like a better way to explain it would be "as for (object), which you already know about +은/는, this is what's new that exists +가/이."
So, to connect that back to the original sentence 남자는 메시지가 있습니다, it'd be like this:
"As for the man (which you already knew about, so you'd use 는 with him), he has a message (using 가 since this is new information, so it gets more emphasis)."
Of course, if you're introducing the man and the message in the same sentence, you'll just put 가/이 on whatever needs more emphasis or could be considered more important.
남자는 메시지가 있습니다. There is a man and he has a message, but the part with more attention/emphasis is the message he has.
남자가 메시지는 있습니다. (I switched 가 and 는). There is a man and he has a message, but what's getting more attention is that there's a man that has the message. 》Maybe the secretary from before came in and said "There's a message for you," making the message already known. "Who has it?" You ask. "A man has the message," replied the secretary, placing the 가 on the man because he's the new information.
Hopefully this makes more sense to anyone reading it! I know I could've used a better explanation when I first learned how this stuff worked, heheh.
It's important to remember that 이/가 and 은/는 aren't always interchangeable. If you're trying to say "The man has a message.", you could say 남자가 메시지 있습니다 or 남자는 메시지 있습니다 and they would both be valid. If you were to put 가 on 메시지, you would be saying the message has something. 은/는 are topic markers while 이/가 are subject markers. I do agree that they are extremely confusing but 이/가 can only be attached to the person/pronoun/thing DOING the action.
남자가 메시지는 있습니다 is a badly formed sentence. It reads closer to "The message has a man." If you want to emphasize the message, you would drop 남자 altogether and say 메시지가 있습니다 or 메시지는 있습니다.
You cannot freely interchange the subject marker with the topic marker. You can replace the subject marker (or any marker really) with the topic marker to add contrasting emphasis in your sentence.
In all languages, there are subjects, verbs, and objects. The subject is the thing completing the action (verb), usually onto the object. In this case, the child is the subject, the ball is the object, and throws is the verb. 이/가 are SUBJECT markers, which means they can only be attached to the person/pronoun/thing DOING the action. 을/를 are OBJECT markers, which means they can only be attached to the person/pronoun/thing towards whom the action is being performed. Since the ball is what's getting thrown, 공을 would be correct while 공이 would not.
Korean doesn't distinguish between definite (the) and indefinite (a/an) like English does; -는 marks the conversation topic and -가/이 marks the sentence subject. Korean grammar is extremely different from what you see in Western European languages, but if you keep practicing you'll get a feel for it.