Learn 예/ 응/ 네 meaning and usage in just 5 minutes.
예/ 응/ 네 in English is “yes” in Korean language and 네/ 예/ 응 are probably one of the first words that you learned in Korean, but there are several things about these seemingly simple words that often confuse Korean language learners.
어 = 응 = Informal(반말 talk impolite) = Yes.
네 = Formal(존댓말 honorific) = Yes.
예 = Polite = Yes.
예 meaning and usages
You may also hear people say 예, especially in formal situations or when speaking to someone older, or higher ranking than them.
Conversely, in informal or casual situations, such as talking to your friends, it’s common to use 응 or 어 instead of 네.
When answering a negative question in Korean, you answer according to whether or not you agree with the statement.
최근에 개봉된 마블 영화 안 봤지?
응 안봤어 (You’re right, I haven’t seen it.)
아니, 봤어 (No, you’re wrong. I’ve seen it)
최근에 개봉된 마블 영화 봤어?
응 봤어 (Yes, I’ve seen it.)
아니, 안 봤어 (No, I haven’t seen it
네 in englisng
Did you know that 네 can also be used as a question when you need clarification because you misheard or misunderstood what someone said to you?
This usage of 네 is very useful for learners because it’s an easy and natural way to show that you don’t understand something.
The most common greeting in Korean 안녕하세요? and the more formal 안녕하십니까? are technicaly, questions.
That’s why you will often hear Koreans add 네 to the beginning of their reply.
B: 네, 안녕하세요?
You don’t have to do this, it’s fine to just reply 안녕하세요?
Occasionally you may hear people reply to a greeting by just saying 네.
How to use 응 in korean?
학생: 선생님, 안녕하세요?
This is really only done by people in a higher position when talking to their subordinates, and even then, it can come across as a bit cold or dismissive.
So while you should be aware of this, I don’t really recommend using 응.