-들

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Korean[edit]

Etymology[edit]

First attested in the Worin seokbo (月印釋譜 / 월인석보), 1459, as Middle Korean ᄃᆞᆶ〮 (Yale: -tólh). Beyond Korean, most likely related to Japanese (たち) (tachi, pluralizing morpheme); if so, the ancestral form may have been */tatVk/ or similar (Vovin 2010, p. 120).

Pronunciation[edit]

Romanizations
Revised Romanization?-deul
Revised Romanization (translit.)?deul
McCune–Reischauer?tŭl
Yale Romanization?tul

Particle[edit]

(-deul)

  1. An auxiliary plural particle with an emphasis on the individuality of each item. See Usage notes for more.
    사람saramdeulpeople, persons
    기억gieokdeulmemories
    빨리 하세요. (when addressing multiple people)
    Ppallideul haseyo.
    Get it done quickly.
    그 사람은 가족이에요.Geu saramdeureun gajogieyo.Those people are family.

Usage notes[edit]

  • Korean does not grammatically distinguish between singular and plural nouns. Thus, while 사람들 (saramdeul) means "people", 사람 (saram) can mean either "person" or "people", depending on context.
  • (deul) has a nuance of emphasizing the individuality of each item. Compare the following:
    아이 공부 해서 된다.
    Ai-ga gongbu-man haeseo-neun an doenda.
    Children [a child in a generic sense; children as a collective group] should not just be studying.
    아이 공부 해서 된다.
    Aideur-i gongbu-man haeseo-neun an doenda.
    The children [specific children, or simply emphasizing the individuality of children] should not just be studying.
    우리 하는 들어.
    Uri-ga haneun mal jom deureobwa.
    Listen for a bit to what we are saying.
    우리 하는 들어.
    Urideur-i haneun mal jom deureobwa.
    Listen for a bit to what we [each of us] are saying.
  • (deul) is not typically used for a quantified noun, except in a construction where the classifier precedes the quantified noun and is linked by the genitive particle (ui).
    사람du saramtwo people
    사람du saramdeultwo people (but uncommon)
    사람 saram du myeongtwo people
    사람 saramdeul du myeongtwo out of some larger group of people
    사람du myeong-ui saramtwo people
    사람du myeong-ui saramdeultwo people
  • (deul) is obligatory after the deictic determiners (i, this), (geu, that), (jeo, that).
    사람jeo saramthat person
    사람jeo saramdeulthose people
  • (deul) can used after an adverb or an object to pluralize the subject, especially when the subject has been omitted.
    빨리 먹어라 (command to a group of people)ppallideul meogeoraeat quickly
    먹어라 (command to a group of people)bapdeul meogeoraeat some rice