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Lesson Transcript

Hi everybody! Jae here. Welcome to Ask a Teacher, where I’ll answer some of your most common Korean questions.
The question for this lesson is…
Why do Korean people sometimes use 우리 [uri] meaning "our" when they actually mean "my?"
Korean people sometimes use the word 우리 [uri] meaning “our” instead of “my” when talking about a group that they are a part of. For example, "my family," 우리가족 [uri gajok]. It literally means “our family.” And the list goes on for example, 우리 엄마 [uri eomma] "my mom” or literally “our mom”.
Korean people also use the word 우리 [uri] when talking about a group that they are strongly attached to like a family member.
Let’s do some examples so you can learn how to use 우리 [uri] correctly.
Let’s say you want to introduce your coworker to your friend. You would say 우리 회사 동료야. [Uri hoesa dongnyoya.] "This is my coworker." 우리 회사 [uri hoesa] literally means "our company," but you and your friend do not work at the same company. So what you actually mean is “my company.” By saying 우리 회사 [uri hoesa], you express a sense of belonging.
Let’s do another example. Let’s say someone asks you how many people are in your family. If there are four people in your family, you would say, 우리 가족은 4명입니다. [Uri gajogeun ne myeongimnida.] "There are four people in my family." or literally “There are four people in our family.” This use of “our” doesn’t mean that the speaker and the listener are siblings. The speaker uses 우리 [uri] because he or she feels strongly attached to his or her family.
Let’s do one more example. Say you have a best friend named Mark and Mark has a brother named Andy, whom you are also close with. In this case, you can refer to Andy as 우리 앤디 [uri aendi] and ask Mark, 우리 앤디는 지금 뭐 해? [Uri aendineun jigeum mwo hae?] meaning "What is Andy doing now?" or literally “What is our Andy doing now?” This is to show your close friendship with Andy.
You can also use 우리 [uri] when referring to things you are particularly attached to such as 우리 집 [uri jip] "my home" and 우리 차 [uri cha] "my car." Try using 우리 [uri] the next time you talk to your Korean friends and see how you sound!
How was this? Hope that helps!
Please leave any more questions in the comments below and I’ll try to answer them!
Thanks for listening, and see you in another series. Bye! 다음 시간에 만나요. (Daeum-sigane mannayo.)


Please to leave a comment.
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KoreanClass101.com Verified
Friday at 06:30 PM
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What Korean learning question do you have?

KoreanClass101.com Verified
Thursday at 12:52 PM
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Hi Aung Myo Ko,

Thank you for your message.

We are sorry to hear that you can’t access the video.

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Have a great day!👍



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Aung Myo Ko
Thursday at 07:11 AM
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Why did not open the video

KoreanClass101.com Verified
Monday at 11:50 PM
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Hi 브리안,

Thanks for commenting. We have a lesson series on pronunciation which will be of help:


This lesson should be of help.



Team KoreanClass101.com

Thursday at 10:06 AM
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Can Jae explain the phonetical difference between 애 and 에?

KoreanClass101.com Verified
Friday at 11:08 AM
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Hi Aki,

Thank you for posting. Unfortunately, we do not have a lesson series at the moment that focuses solely on the past/present/future tenses of verbs, we'll take your advice into consideration!

But for now, here are some lessons that may be of help:




Sorry we could not be of more help! ? Please let us know if you have any other inquiries.



Team KoreanClass101.com

Thursday at 04:09 PM
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Thanks for this. Also, can you elaborate how the verbs in Korean are used to depict present, future and past tenses?

I have read a few from books and internet, both have separate explanations but somehow related. Maybe because the written and spoken form of both are different? I hope you can have a clear discussion of this. Thanks a lot! More power!

KoreanClass101.com Verified
Friday at 09:54 PM
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HI mimibest,

Great to have you here! Thank you for your kind feedback!

Please stay tuned, as we'll have new lessons for you every week! And if you have any questions, feel free to ask us.


Team KoreanClass101.com

Friday at 05:52 AM
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Leave a comment...Hi i am so happy for this teaching.just want to say a big thank you.

KoreanClass101.com Verified
Friday at 01:11 AM
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Hi Krista,

Thanks for posting, could you be more specific regarding the usage of 'ㅐ' and 'ㅔ'? Are you referring to the pronunciation or when to use the case particle '에'?

Looking forward to hearing from you!



Team KoreanClass101.com

Krista G
Wednesday at 12:35 PM
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Hello! How do you know if you should useㅐorㅔ?