Difference between 않아 and 안하?

I'm sort of new to learning Korean, and I just wanted to know what the difference is between words such as 않아 and 안하. I know that 않아 is the correct way of writing it, but why isn't it the other way? Is it because the h is silent and doesn't make a "ha" sound? There are a bunch of other words that do things like this so I was wondering if theres any way to tell how one is written.

(other example: it is 사람일까 and not 사라밀까)

April 13, 2019


welp. 않다 is actually 아니하다, after about a hundred million repetitions
of 아니하다, it got contracted to 않다, and thats just the way it is.

사람일까 is literally 사람 + 이다 +ㄹ까. its not a word in itself.
altogether 사람일까 means something like "could it be a person?"

any other questions right away?

April 13, 2019

so there is no way to tell if a word is spelled like 않다 or 아니하다, you kind of just need to memorize it?

April 13, 2019

??? i was mistaken.
it is because if words changed actual spelling to reflect pronunciation, every time you add 이다, 어/아, 은/을/음/으, or theres a syllable that starts with a 'ㅇ' mid word, it would create such an incomprehensible mess.

it would also jam up hanja words to where you cant tell the meaning by spelling in writing.

also to be clear, 아니하다 is just the technical form of 않다. you dont really have to worry about using it, you will probably rarely even see it.

April 13, 2019

If I understand you correctly, you are asking why the batchim doesn't carry on to the second syllable when writing it.

Basically, the answer is: "that's just the way it's spelled".

The more grammar-y answer is: you don't just move things around willy-nilly -- you have to follow rules. For instance, in your 사람 example, you are literally putting things together: 사람 + 이다 + ㄹ까 (as McPwny already stated). Let's take a different example, 사람이에요 (요 form conjugation of 이다). Why isn't it 사라미에요? Because you would not be following proper conjugation rules at this point. An English variant of your question might be "Why is it spelled as 'I am a man' and not 'I a maman'? Do you see the issue here?

And why 않아 and not 안하? Again, according to 아/어요 rules, 않다 -> 않아(요). Also 않아 and 안하 could mean different things and could potentially confuse people.

April 14, 2019

ohh, i think i understand now! thank you

April 14, 2019

열공하는 모습들이 보기 좋네요^^ 어떻게 보면 세상에서 한국말이 젤 어려운 것 같아요~ 중간중간 한자도 섞어 쓰고하니까~ㅋㅋ 화이팅요^^

April 15, 2019

I speak some Korean, and from conversations with other adults, both the words are pronounced exactly the same, and you have to find out what the word means through the context of the sentence

April 14, 2019

Pace those who think that Korean is completely phonetic, Korean has a morphophonemic orthography. It means that the Korean orthography tends to reflect a word's phoneme and in many cases a written word is not pronounced as it is written. But in most cases, if you follow the Korean sandhi (sound change) rules, you will be able to pronounce most of them correctly.

않아 is written that way because it's 않(-다) + -아. According to the Korean sandhi rules, a final consonant ㅎ that is carried over by silent ㅇ is not pronounced. So 않아 is pronounced as [아나] while 안하 would be pronounced as [안하] as in 안하무인 (though Korean ㅎ tends to have a weaker sound in this case.)

사람일까 is written the way it is because it's 사람 + 이(-다) + -ㄹ까.

May 8, 2019
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