"여자가 물을 마십니다."
Translation:The woman drinks water.
Here's some info on a way they can be thought of:
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.
That is one tough question.
Until someone else shines in with a comprehensive answer in this post (or as a separate post to be stickied in the forum), I'll just give you this link to the countless discussions you can find about this on Korean language learners blogs.
Also, I do not understand all the finesses myself either on this topic.
For now, I just try to remember whenever someone corrects me and tells me the form I used sounds unnatural.
I think 가/이 are used as particle subject. And 는/은 are used as particle topic. So if we want to emphasize the topic of the talk we can put 는/은 instead of 가/이. If our sentence has no topic to be strengthen/emphasize then we can just use 가/이 after the subject.
Please add/correct me if it is a less/wrong explanation. Thanks.
From what I've heard, it'll sound similar to this anyways. I've read (so someone can correct me if I'm wrong) that in English when we make an M sound (along with other letters), we make a little humming sound as we 'build up' to the actual sound. Try saying M, finishing off with the 'uh' sound, like "muh."
Before you actually open your mouth to say the final M sound, you hum as you build up to it. What I've read is that they don't do that hum part in Korean, so sounds will sound a lot more abrubt and sharp, so the M will sound a little bit closer to a B.
But that could just be someone else saying random stuff too, so take this with a grain of salt. It makes sense to me, though!