[Learn Korean E26] “한테 / 한테서”, Past tense of honorifics

안녕하세요. 토미입니다.
Let’s have fun learning an energetic language, Korean!

The theme of today’s class is【여기 계셨어요?】“Were you here?”

Today, we will learn three things.

First, particles [한테/한테서] “to/from.”
Second, the past tense of honorifics for verbs or adjectives such as [(으)셨어요].
Third, the past tense of honorifics for nouns [(이)셨어요].

After taking today’s class, you will be able to express things like “I got this gift from my grandma!”

Let’s get through this beginner level together and get a remarkable score on TOPIK and be a super master of Korean!

그럼 시작할게요!

Listen to the Conversation

The theme of today’s class is 【여기 계셨어요?】 “Were you here?” Tammy seemed to be looking for the Chief in the office.

Let’s listen to the conversation between Tammy and the Chief with English subtitles.

그럼 들어보세요!

  • 토미:과장님, 여기 계셨어요?
    Tammy:Chief, were you here?
  • 과장님:네. 무슨 일이 있었어요?
    Chief:Yes. Did something happen?
  • 토미:사무실에 누가 찾아오셨어요.
    Tammy:Someone came to visit the office.
  • 과장님:아마 김 변호사겠지요.
    Chief:That could be probably lawyer Kim.
  • 토미:그분 변호사셨어요? 저는 몰랐어요.
    Tammy: Was she a lawyer? I did not know that.
  • 과장님:김 변호사한테서 서류 받았어요?
    Chief:Did you receive the documents from lawyer Kim?
  • 토미:네. 이 봉투를 저한테 주셨어요.
    Tammy:Yes. She gave me this envelope.

Vocabulary and Phrases

It seems like Tammy did not know the lady was a lawyer, right?
So she was very surprised to hear it.
In this section, I will go over the vocabulary and phrases while reviewing the conversation one by one.

  • 토미:과장님, 여기 계셨어요?

[과장님] is a “section chief.”
In Korean workplaces, you should always refer to your bosses by adding [님] to their titles.
So, let’s look at some work titles.
[부장님] is a “department head,” [이사장님] is a “chairman of the board,” and [회장님] is a“president.”
As you can see, [님] is in common for all words.

  • 과장님:네. 무슨 일이 있었어요?
  • 토미:사무실에 누가 찾아오셨어요.

[사무실] is an “office.”
Likewise, [−실] indicates “a room” or “a space.”
For example, [교실] is a “classroom,” [경비실] is a “security room,” and [객실] is a “guest room.”

[누가] means “someone.”
This word is a combination of [누구] ”who” and the subject marker [가].
By putting them together, it will be transformed to [누가] “someone.”

In the conversation, Tammy said, [사무실에 누가 찾아오셨어요.] “Someone came to visit the office.”
“Here,” “someone” is the subject of the sentence, that’s why Tammy used [누가], “someone.”

The word [찾아오다] means “to come to visit.”
Tammy said, [찾아오셨어요.] because someone came to visit her office.

  • 과장님:아마 김 변호사겠지요.

[아마] is “maybe/probably.”
In the previous class, we learned [겠어요], do you remember it?
You use [겠어요] to guess something, like “I guess~ / I assume~.”

Therefore, [아마] “maybe / probably” can be used often with this grammar.

In the conversation, the chief says, [아마 김 변호사겠지요.] “That could be probably lawyer Kim.”
As you can see, the chief used [아마] and [겠지요] as a good pair.

[변호사] means “a lawyer.”
[−사]indicates certain jobs.
For example, [기사] is a “driver,” [통역사] is a “interpreter,” [약사] is a “pharmacist,” [의사] is a “doctor,” and [목사] is a “pastor.”

It is also common to add [−님] at the end when calling these people.
For example, it will be polite and normal to say [기사님, 통역사님, 약사님, 의사님, 목사님].

  • 토미:그분 변호사셨어요? 저는 몰랐어요.

[그분] is “that person” that a listener and a speaker are talking about in the conversation.
Let’s also look at some similar expressions.
[이분] is “this person,” and [저분] is “that person (over there).”
When a speaker and a listener both know the person they are talking about as in “Was that person a lawyer?” in the conversation, Korean people use [그분] like the way you say “that person” in English.

  • 과장님:김 변호사한테서 서류 받았어요?

[서류]is “documents.”
When you say [서류를 정리하다], it means “to organize documents.”

[받다] is “to receive”, and the rule of [ㄷ] irregular does not apply to this word.
So when you change this word to the 요 form, it will be [받아요].

  • 토미:네. 이 봉투를 저한테 주셨어요.

[봉투]is an “envelope.”
There is a word with a similar pronunciation, which is [봉지] a “bag.”

[주다]means “to give”, so [주세요] means “please give me.”
For example, [펜을 주세요.] is “Please give me a pen.”

Grammar

한테/한테서 To (someone)~ / From (someone)~

[한테] means “to (someone)” and [한테서] means “from (someone).”

You can only use them for a person, not for things.

You can use them in informal or casual expressions.
The formal expression would be [에게(서)] “to/from.”

Grammar is easy because you just need to put [한테(서)]or [에게(서)] after nouns regardless of whether there is a final consonant or not.
In the conversation, there was a phrase

이 봉투를 저한테 주셨어요.
She gave me this envelope.

Let’s see [저한테] here.
[저] means “I.”
Combine it with [한테] ”to,” it becomes [저한테] “to me.”
So the direct translation in English would be “She gave this envelope to me.”

As you can see from [저한테], you use [한테] to a person only, not for things.

If you use [에게] instead to make it a formal expression, it would be [이 봉투를 저에게 주셨어요.] “She gave me this envelope.”

Next, let’s look at the sentence with [한테서] “from (someone).”

김 변호사한테서 서류 받았어요?
Did you receive documents from lawyer Kim?

We will focus on [김 변호사한테서].
[김 변호사] is “lawyer Kim” and you add [한테서] to make [김 변호사한테서] “from lawyer Kim.”
When you make this into a formal expression, it would be [김 변호사에게서 서류 받았어요?].

Quiz

What fits in the bracket?

[학교 친구(     ) 편지가 왔어요.] I received a letter from a school friend.

(1)한테서 (2)함께

The answer is (1).
To express “from (someone),” you use [한테서] and say [친구한테서] “from a friend.”

The whole sentence would be [학교 친구(한테서) 편지가 왔어요.]

(으)셨어요

In the previous class, we learned that the basic form of honorifics is [(으)시다].
The past tense is [(으)셨다].

When you make it to [요 form], it will be [(으)셨어요]. Let’s look at how to use it.

If the verb stem has a final consonant, you add [으셨어요].
If the verb stem does not have a final consonant, you add [셨어요].

When the verb stem has [ㄹ] final consonant, you say goodbye to [ㄹ] and add [셨어요] directly.

In the case of honorific verbs such as [계시다]”to be,” [드시다] “to eat/drink,” or [주무시다] “to sleep,” you can see [시] in common.

In this case, you just have to change [시다] to [셨어요] to make them into a past tense.

So, [계시다] becomes [계셨어요], [드시다] becomes [드셨어요], and [주무시다] becomes [주무셨어요].

Now, let’s look at some examples with a final consonant.

그분은 이 신문을 읽으셨어요.
That person read this newspaper.

[읽다] “to read” has [ㄺ] final consonant, you add [으셨어요] and it becomes [읽으셨어요].

In the conversation, there was a phrase: [토미:과장님, 여기 계셨어요?] “Chief, were you here?”
In this case with [계시다] “to be,” there is already [시] in the middle, so you add [셨어요] directly after [계] to make [계셨어요?].

Let’s look at one more example.

우리 할머니께서는 돈을 많이 버셨어요.
My grandmother earned a lot of money.

Here, the word [벌다] “to earn (money)” has [ㄹ] final consonant, so you remove [ㄹ] , good bye [ㄹ], and add [셨어요] to say [버셨어요].

(이)셨어요

Let’s move on to the case for nouns.
For nouns, it is [(이)셨어요].

When the last letter of a noun has a final consonant, you add [이셨어요].
When the last letter does not have a final consonant, you add [셨어요].

Let’s look at an example.

우리 아버님께서는 이사장님이셨어요.
My father was the president on the board.

Here, [이사장님] has [ㅁ] final consonant, so you add [이셨어요] and it becomes [이사장님이셨어요].

Let’s look at the phrase in the conversation.

그분 변호사셨어요?
Was that person a lawyer?

Here, [변호사]”lawyer” does not have a final consonant, so you add [셨어요] and say [변호사셨어요?]

Quiz

What fits in the bracket?

[부장님께서는 저한테 일을 (          ).] The department head did not ask me to do the job.

(1)부탁하셨어요 (2)부탁 안 하셨어요

The answer is (2).
[부탁하다] is “to ask/to plead.”
[부탁하다] does not have a final consonant, so you directly add [셨어요] to the verb stem to make [부탁하셨어요].
After that, you have to change it to a negative sentence.
You split [부탁하셨어요] into [부탁] and [하셨어요].
And then put [안] in the middle to make [부탁 안 하셨어요].

The whole sentence would be [부장님께서는 저한테 일을 부탁 안 하셨어요].

Conversation (Korean only)

Let’s try listening to the conversation again only in Korean this time.
Your listening skills must have improved in this short period of time!

그럼 확인해 보세요!

  • 토미:과장님, 여기 계셨어요?
  • 과장님:네. 무슨 일이 있었어요?
  • 토미:사무실에 누가 찾아오셨어요.
  • 과장님:아마 김 변호사겠지요.
  • 토미:그분 변호사셨어요? 저는 몰랐어요.
  • 과장님:김 변호사한테서 서류 받았어요?
  • 토미:네. 이 봉투를 저한테 주셨어요.

Conversation Practice

This is one of a few times you can practice for yourself, so please focus on reading out loud!

그럼 큰소리로 읽어 보세요!

  • 토미:과장님, 여기 계셨어요?
    Tammy:Chief, were you here?
  • 과장님:네. 무슨 일이 있었어요?
    Chief:Yes. Did something happen?
  • 토미:사무실에 누가 찾아오셨어요.
    Tammy:Someone came to visit the office.
  • 과장님:아마 김 변호사겠지요.
    Chief:That could be probably lawyer Kim.
  • 토미:그분 변호사셨어요? 저는 몰랐어요.
    Tammy: Was she a lawyer? I did not know that.
  • 과장님:김 변호사한테서 서류 받았어요?
    Chief:Did you receive the documents from lawyer Kim?
  • 토미:네. 이 봉투를 저한테 주셨어요.
    Tammy:Yes. She gave me this envelope.

Homework

I’ll give you two homework assignments from today’s class.
For the first homework, make two sentences using the past tense honorifics.

For example, I would make a first sentence using [noun +(이)셨어요].

  • 우리 할머님께서는 간호사셨어요.
    My grandmother was a nurse.

For the second sentence, I would use [(으)셨어요], past tense for honorifics.

  • 우리 할머님께서는 환자분들을 많이 아끼셨어요.
    My grandmother took very good care of her patients.

The second homework is memorizing vocabulary.
Please memorize 40 words from #641 to #680 on page 9 of the Elementary Vocabulary List.
You can take a vocabulary quiz on these 40 words for free. So, please take full advantage of it. Nothing to lose!

That’s all for today.
그럼 오늘도 행복 가득, 웃음 가득한 하루 되세요! 한국어 화이팅, 화이팅, 화이팅!!

Vocabulary Test : 40 Questions

There will be 40 multiple choice questions in total displayed in random order, testing on Vocabulary #641~680 from the Beginner Level Vocabulary List.
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