because that “older sister”, lock use various words. Once Mary calls her older sister Claire, Mary would not speak to her by she name however by speak “unnie”. (It’s a 2-syllable word: “un” sounds choose the very first syllable the “under”; “nie” sounds prefer “knee”.) for example, Mary would say, “Unnie, go you shot this?” or “My unnie is a university student.” However, “unnie” is provided only in between sisters. So, once Bill calls his enlarge sister Claire, he needs to use a various word, “noona” (pronounced noo-nah). Because that example, “Noona, go you try this?” or “My noona is a university student.”

Recap: Words because that “Older Sister”
“Unnie” (
) is used in between sisters “Noona” (
) is used in between a brother and also his larger sister
Unnie an interpretation older sister composed in oriental ( pat Sound

Noona meaning

older sister created in korean ( Play Sound )

just how do Koreans speak to their younger brothers or sisters? do we have to learn another collection of 4 words? Luckily for first-time learner of Korean, the complication stop here. When Koreans talk straight to younger family members members, they just contact them by your names. So, Michael would say, “Claire, walk you shot this?” and also “Bill, go you shot this?”

In the example above, Claire has actually only one “oppa”, but Mary has two. Mary would speak to both Michael and Bill “oppa”. Bill has two sisters however only one “noona”. Michael, gift the oldest, will certainly never have a opportunity to use any type of of the 4 words in ~ his prompt family. However he may gain to use few of the words come his relatives.

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Usage prolonged to Relatives

Koreans usage the same set of native we simply learned (oppa, hyung, unnie, noona) beyond their prompt family. Mean you were shopping in ~ a mall with Paul, that is your father’s cousin’s son (and older 보다 you). And also you ran right into your colleague. Once you introduce Paul to her colleague, you have actually two choices: you may say, “This is my yook-chon oppa (my father’s cousin’s son who is older 보다 me)” or merely “This is my oppa”. If you use the second option, omitting the preceding qualifier prior to the indigenous “oppa”, Paul would feel that you take into consideration him almost as close together your very own brother. “Yook-chon oppa” is the more accurate summary of the relationship, but it sounds somewhat distant. As soon as someone phone call a far-off relative “oppa”, it means that she would rather reduced out the great of distance and also simply treat him together if he to be her own brother. Likewise, hyung, unnie and also noona are additionally used for remote relatives who belong come the exact same generation as you. What’s vital here is the principle of gift in the exact same generation, i m sorry is characterized by genealogy and also not by the age group. In severe case, it is possible that a child of your father’s cousin can be older than you through a couple of decades. But, since he is tho in the very same generation in the genealogical sense, he can be your “oppa” or “hyung”.

Usage Extended past Blood Relationship

You may not have actually much emotional bonding v the kids of your father’s cousin, unless you have spent time along with them in your formative years. You might be in reality closer to someone who you met outside the bloodline boundary. Countless Koreans select to blur the boundary when they connect with enlarge friends they met socially through calling castle “hyung”, “unnie”, “oppa” or “noona”. By making use of these terms, you display your willingness to be informal together if they to be your very own brothers or sisters. Mean that a 20-year-old baritone singer joined a church choir, whereby he was presented to a 24-year-old tenor. Initially, that may deal with the older singer somewhat formally. After part socialization, if they support feel that their relationship deserves brother-to-brother informality, the young baritone may start to contact his brand-new (older) girlfriend “hyung”. Similarly, once a young mrs meets a contempt older woman, she may at some allude begin to speak to her “unnie” — again, only if lock feel the their partnership deserves sister-to-sister type of informality. The initial, formal period may it is in a week, a job or as brief as 2 minutes. Or, it may never end. In fact, there are countless Koreans who would never use (and never ever want come be referred to as by) these household terms exterior of the actual blood relationship. So, the extended intake is by no means mandatory. even if it is they would opt to usage these terms additionally depends on once the first encounter happened. A 35-year-old woman who recently acquired to understand a contempt older guy socially would probably never call him “oppa”, back she can have excellent so if she to be 22 year old and also certainly much an ext readily if she to be 17. Yet, girlfriend may uncover a mrs in she 60’s call an older male “oppa”, due to the fact that they more than likely met once they were young and she has actually been calling the that means for decades. Moreover, you sometimes see a married woman that calls her husband “oppa”, because that’s the way she called him before she married him and also it was probably awkward to move to a much more traditional ax after marriage.
Q & A
Q: ns a sophomore right now attending a university in Korea together an exchange student. In mine class, ns met a male who is 2 years my senior. Is it it s okay if I call him “oppa”? A: it depends. If you want to address him together “oppa”, friend can definitely do so. However, you need to keep in mind the by calling someone “oppa”, you room signaling the you wish to i think a traditional female role relative come the person, search “protection” and “advice” native him, because that example. If you want a straightforward friendship on an same footing, this is no a hatchet you desire to use – girlfriend can contact him through his name.
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