Future & Guess

Have you ever thought that ‘be going to’ is a bit weird? For example, if you say ‘I’m going to think about it’, it really doesn’t mean you’re actually going somewhere to think unless you have some thinking chamber 😂😂😂. future tense in Korean language is also super weird.


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By the way, let’s imagine the world that you have only ㄹ options for your future every single time. Only ㄹ possibilities are there and when you pick one of them, the future would be decided. What kind of gibberish again? You know what kind now.  Let’s see what I meant.




Simple Future in Korean Language

‘I, it’s the thing to study’. It sounds like some galactic wizard speaking very dramatically 😂😂😂. But that’s what you can read when you translate ‘저는 공부할거예요(I’ll study) directly.


Korean Language Course 19. Future Tense 1 img


Korean language describes the future tense by using a conjugation ‘ㄹ 거예요’. This expression is really interesting when you disassemble the phrase into small pieces. 예요 means ‘to be’ and 거 means ‘thing’ and ㄹ makes a nuance for possibility, not future. So, all together? ‘it’s the thing to ~’. By the way, Korean language, unlike English, doesn’t have near future tense. So, ‘Will’ and ‘Be going to’ are just the same.




English vs Korean Language

That’s odd. We are learning about the future tense. Why did the possibility come up right now? Because, in the Korean language mindset, the future isn’t made yet, so everything in the future is a possibility. That’s an interesting idea Hmm?


If you think about both languages for the future tense, it shows the differences very clearly between them. In English, ‘will’ is the same word as ‘will’ as an intention for what to do in future. But in Korean language, the future is a possibility that can happen and hasn’t happened yet. Those 2 different mindsets affect each language and possibly the languages affect our mindset. Amazing right?




With 하다 Verb

Korean future tense use ‘ㄹ거’ between a verb and an ending to make future tense. Tense is always decided between the verb and the ending.


Course 19. Future Tense 2 img


하다 verb conjugation becomes ‘할 거예요’ or ‘ㄹ(받침) 거예요’ in 해요 speech style. However, if the word root ends with the final consonant which is batchim, ‘ㄹ 거예요’ becomes ‘을 거예요’




I Will Be in Korean Language

Remember, the Korean future tense is about possibility. Now, this mindset strongly affects the grammar. Before I’m going to explain more, I want you to make a sentence yourself. How do you say ‘I’ll be a teacher’ in Korean? ‘To be’ is 이다, teacher is 선생님. Try it!


Don’t read more before you make a sentence!


Probably, you made ‘저는 선생님 일거예요’ and probably you also guessed like ‘I don’t think this sentence is talking about the future’ 😂😂😂. You’re right. That sentence doesn’t actually mean ‘I’ll be a teacher’ even though it’s supposed to mean that. Instead, it means ‘I may / might be a teacher right now’. This is the unreasonable side of the Korean language : the future is a possibility 😂😂😂.




With 이다 Word

‘일거예요’ is used to describe an assumption more than a future tense especially for ‘someone will be + noun’ and ‘someone will be + location’. Then, how can we make ‘I’ll be something’?


Korean Language Course 19. Future Tense 3 img


You can use 되다 which means ‘to become’. When 이다 words are used as verbs and adjectives, they always mean the future with the future tense.




Key Component ㄹ

So, I told you about the world that you have only ㄹ possibilities for the future. and this ㄹ represents ‘possibility or future’ Do you remember 받침 ㅆ always makes the past tense with verb conjugations? Just like that, ㄹ always make the future tense or possibility with verb conjugations. Check if the sentence has ㄹ when you are confused if it’s future or not.




Future 이다 Examples

저는 선생님일 거예요
I will be a teacher (Wrong)
I guess I’m a teacher
= May be + Noun
It has only the meaning of guessing. You must use a verb 되다 (become) to describe what someone will be.


저는 선생님이 될거예요
I will be a teacher / I’ll become a teacher
= Will be + Noun (되다 : become)


그건 선물일 거예요
That may be a present / That will be a present
= May be + noun
It sounds like it’s describing the future but also guessing.


그 방법은 꽤 수동적일 거예요
That way may be quite passive / That way will be quite passive
= may be + adjective
This sentence also sounds like describing the future and guessing at the same time.





We learned that the future might also be a possibility in the Korean language, But, isn’t there any way that describes the certain future? Of course, we have! Why don’t you jump into the next tutorial and check it out? Oh by the way, before you go to the next tutorial, how about checking our Patreon if you liked the tutorial? We are waiting for a new CEO!

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