Thursday, September 17, 2015

Korean Alphabet- Hangeul 1

Hello, everyone with linguistic interest!

Do you why the alphabets look like that?
Why does letter 'S' have the curvy wave?
What does letter 'Q' represent? A round meat with big bone?

Probably, most people don't know why the alphabet got their shapes and what they represent. Maybe there were no symbolic meanings or reasons for the shapes. If you know the origin of the letters, you rarely know who created the shapes and who started to draw the shape of alphabet like this.

However, I know one alphabet system which has the inventor and the fundamental of the letter shape!

Korean Alphabet: Hangeul

Hangeul has basic 24 letters; the basic letters can be utilized like doubled vowels or doubled strong consonants.  


The basic vowels of Korean are made of three basic symbols representing sky or sun, earth, and human.

hangeul_2.jpg A small dot represents the sun or the sky.
hangeul_3.jpgA horizontal line represents the earth.
hangeul_1.jpgThe vertical line represents a human.

These three basic symbols create the Korean vowel images like below.

”ㅏ” is ‘ah’ sound in Korean. The vertical line of human and small dot of sun combined the shape “ㅏ.”
“ㅗ”  is ‘oh’ sound in Korean.

Likewise, vowels in Korean represent the abstract symbolic concepts such as the harmony between human beings and nature. On the other hand, consonants in Korean show the scientific pronunciation-related images such as the shape of the tongue. I will introduce about the consonants in the next posting.

Thank you for reading.
See you soon!


  1. useful post! your character is so cuuuuuute!! XD

  2. Do the combined vowels have some meaning too? For example does sun+earth mean something like the world?

  3. I think this blog would be a great for people who want to learn Korean!