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U+C124, 설
Composition: + +

Hangul Syllables

섀 ←→ 세


Etymology 1[edit]

First attested in the Worin seokbo (月印釋譜 / 월인석보), 1459, as Middle Korean 설〯 (Yale: sěl).

The word originally meant both "New Year" and "year of age". The two terms are connected; in Korea, one gains a new year of age at every New Year (so that all people born in the same year have the same age). In the eighteenth century, speakers created the new term (sal, year of age) by using a yang-vowel alternation of (seol). (seol) and (sal) are one of a number of Korean noun pairs with yin-yang vowel alternation which were originally the same word.


  • (SK Standard/Seoul) IPA(key): [sʰɘ(ː)ɭ]
  • Phonetic hangul: [(ː)]
    • Though still prescriptive in Standard Korean, most speakers in both Koreas no longer distinguish vowel length.
Revised Romanization?seol
Revised Romanization (translit.)?seol
Yale Romanization?sēl
  • South Gyeongsang (Busan) pitch accent: / 설 / 설까지

    Syllables in red take high pitch. This word always takes low pitch, and heightens the pitch of two subsequent suffixed syllables.



  1. Korean New Year (same as Chinese New Year)
    Synonyms: 설날 (seollal), 구정(舊正) (gujeong)
    가족 여서 윷놀이 곤 한다.Seor-i-myeon on gajog-i moyeoseo yunnori-reul hagon handa.On New Year's Day, the entire family would gather to play yunnori.
Derived terms[edit]
Related terms[edit]

Etymology 2[edit]

Sino-Korean word from .


Revised Romanization?seol
Revised Romanization (translit.)?seol
Yale Romanization?sel


(seol) (hanja )

  1. theory; opinion, view
  2. rumour
Derived terms[edit]


(seol) (hanja )

  1. Root of 설(說)하다 (seolhada, to preach). Rarely used alone.


—설 (-seol) (hanja )

  1. theory
    지동(地動) (jidong, Earth rotation) + ‎설(說) (seol, theory) → ‎지동설(地動說) (jidongseol, Heliocentric theory)
See also[edit]

Derived terms[edit]

Middle Korean[edit]



설〯 (sěl) (locative 서〯레〮 (sěl-éy))

  1. year of age
    • 1459, Worin seokbo 月印釋譜 / 월인석보, page 8:101b:
      죠〯ᅌᅵ〮 ᄒᆞᆫ〮 아ᄃᆞ〮ᄅᆞᆯ〮 나하〮ᄂᆞᆯ〮 그 아〮기〮 닐굽〮 설〯 머거〮 []
      cywǒng-í hón àtól-ól nàhánól kù ákí nìlkwúp sěl mèké
      The servant gives birth to a son, and the baby grows to be seven years old []
  2. New Year
    • 1459, Worin seokbo 月印釋譜 / 월인석보, page 2:68b–69a:
      (또ᇢ〯)(ᄊᆞᆼ〯)ᄃᆞᆯ〮히〮 서〯레〮 님〯금〮 뵈〯ᅀᆞ〮ᄫᅩ라〮 모다〮 왯〮다가〮 []
      TTWǑW.SSǑ-tólh-í sěl-éy nǐmkúm pwǒyzóWwòlá mwòtá wáystàká
      When the priests gathered to see the king for the New Year []


  • Korean: (seol, New Year), (sal, year of age)