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First attested in the Yongbi eocheonga (龍飛御天歌 / 용비어천가), 1447, as  (Yale: koc). The change to a tense consonant initial occurred as this word ("flower") was frequently used as the second part of a compound noun denoting a specific flower (e.g. 연꽃 (yeonkkot)), in which the connecting genitive -ㅅ- (-s-) formed a "-sk-" medial cluster with koc, which developed into "-kk-" in Modern Korean. This development in compound nouns was generalised to koc as well.[1]




  1. (botany) flower; flowering plant
    이 핀다.
    Kkoch-i pinda.
    Flowers bloom.
    한 송이‎ ― kkot han song-i ― a flower / one flower
    한 다발‎ ― kkot han dabal ― a bunch of flowers
  2. (figuratively) prime; central part; essence


  • (, hwa, “flower”) (used only in compounds)


  1. ^ Ki-mun Yi, Ki-Moon Lee, S. Robert Ramsey. A History of the Korean Language. Cambridge University Press, 2011. ISBN 9781139494489.