TTMIK Level 5 Lesson 16 - -(ㄴ/는)다
In this lesson, let us take a look at how to make narrative present tense sentences using -(ㄴ/는)다. This verb ending is usually used when you are talking to someone NOT older than you and on close terms with. It is also often used in writing when describing what is happening.
When -(ㄴ/는)다 is used in writing, there is no distinction between formal language (존댓말) and casual language (반말).
- Verb stems ending with a vowel + -ㄴ다
Ex) 자다 (to sleep) → 잔다
- Verb stems ending with a last consonant + -는다
Ex) 굽다 (to bake) → 굽는다
* If a verb stem ends with ㄹ, you drop the ㄹ and add -ㄴ다.
Ex) 팔다 (to sell) → 파 + ㄴ다 → 판다
- Verb stem + -다
Ex) 예쁘다 → 예쁘다
** In the case of descriptive verbs, since the verb stem is what you have after you take away -다 from the verb, the narrative present tense form is actually the same as the verb’s dictionary form.
- 있다 and 없다 are conjugated in the same way as descriptive verbs, therefore they stay the same in the narrative present tense.
Usage Type 1 (In speaking & writing)
- This is ONLY when you are talking to someone NOT older than you.
You use -(ㄴ/는)다 when:
1) you want to show your reaction or impression when talking about a present action, situation.
Ex) 이거 좋다! = This is good!
(In 반말, you would say “이거 좋아" to the other person in the plain present tense, but 이거 좋다 has a stronger nuance that you saw something for the first time and shows your reaction better.)
Ex) 여기 강아지 있다! = Over there! There is a puppy here!
(In 반말, you would say “여기 강아지 있어!”, but 여기 강아지 있다 generally shows your surprise or excitement better.
Ex) 저기 기차 지나간다. = Over there, there is a train passing by.
(In the plain 반말, you would say “저기 기차 지나가", but 저기 기차 지나간다 is generally more commonly used when you want to show your surprise or discovery of a certain fact.)
Ex) 전화 온다. = The phone is ringing.
(In the plain 반말, you would say 전화 와. But here, you are describing a certain situation or action AS it’s happening in the narrative form.)
2) you want to talk about a present action, situation or a regular activity.
Ex) 나 먼저 간다. = I’m leaving now (before you).
(In the plain 반말, you would say 나 먼저 가. or 나 먼저 갈게, but here, you are describing the current situation in the narrative form. It is as if you are saying “Hey, I am leaving now, as you can see. Tell me now if you want to show some reaction.”)
Ex) 그러면, 다음에는 너 초대 안 한다. = If you do that(If that’s the case), next time, I won’t invite you (and make that a rule).
(In the plain 반말, you would say 그러면, 다음에는 너 초대 안 할게. or 그러면 다음에는 너 초대 안 할 거야. since you are talking about the future, but if you want to talk about it as a rule or a habit, you can say 너 초대 안 한다.)
Usage Type 2 (Only in writing)
When you use -(ㄴ/는)다 In writing, the distinction between formal language and casual language disappears. In fact, this is a very common way of describing a series of actions, therefore this -(ㄴ/는)다 is very commonly used in personal journals, recipes, narration scripts for documentary films, etc, wherever a very neutral and narrative voice is required.
Ex) 경은은 오늘도 아침 8시에 일어난다. 일어나서 제일 먼저 하는 일은 핸드폰을 보는 것이다.
(In a documentary film) (Kyeong-eun gets up at 8 AM as usual. The first thing she does after she gets up is checking her cellphone.)
Ex) 이 학교에서는 500명의 학생들이 한국어를 배운다.
(In this school, 500 students learn Korean.)
1. 오늘 날씨 좋다!
[o-neul nal-ssi jo-ta]
= The weather is good today!
2. 전화가 안 돼요. 어? 다시 된다!
[jeon-hwa-ga an dwae-yo. eo? da-si doen-da!]
= The phone is not working. Huh? It’s working again!
3. 저기 내 친구들 온다.
[jeo-gi nae chin-gu-deul on-da]
= There come my friends.
4. 그럼 나는 여기서 기다린다?
[geu-reom na-neun yeo-gi-seo gi-da-rin-da?]
= Then I will wait here, okay?
5. 한국어를 잘 하고 싶으면, 매일 공부해야 한다.
[han-gu-geo-reul jal ha-go si-peu-myeon mae-il gong-bu-hae-ya han-da]
= If you want to speak good Korean, you need to study everyday.