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4 other ways to say “but” in Korean besides ‘하지만’ | 는데, 기는 하지만, 는데도, 는 반면에

안녕하세요 여러분! Do you find yourself overusing 하지만? If so, this lesson will introduce 4 other ways to say "but" in Korean.

You can use “하지만“ of course, but If you are guilty of ‘overusing it’ for everything and every situation then this is for you! You’ll sound natural if you diversify the grammar you use while speaking. Knowing these will also help you understand more spoken Korean.

(으)ㄴ데/는데 = but; and; so

Usage: This functions basically the same as -지만, It’s attached directly to the verb stem. The main difference is that sometimes this grammar can have different meanings than “but” - like “and” or “so”. Thus there are a few different ways to use it, but today let’s stay with the basic. I made a longer in depth lesson covering all of 는데 usages.

How to conjugate:

Action verb stem + 는데 (Present)

있다 and 없다 will also be conjugated the same

If the verb stem ends with ‘ㄹ’ final consonant, you drop ‘ㄹ’ and add 는데.

Descriptive verbs/ adjectives stem + 은데/ㄴ데 (Present)

stem ends with a vowel, you add -ㄴ데

stem ends with a consonant, you add -은데

Nouns + 인데

Usage examples:

어제 날씨가 안 좋았는데 아직 나갔어요. [but]

Yesterday the weather wasn’t good, but I still went out.

추운데 창문을 닫을까? [so] It’s cold, so shall I close the window?

우리 아들은 대학생인데 의사가 될 것입니다.

Our son is a college student and he will be a doctor.

는데도 = even though, although

Usage: A combination of 는데 (but) and 도 (also, too). It’s kinda like saying “even though, despite the fact that..”. It is used to express that the main event unexpectedly occurs (2nd clause) even under a background circumstance (1st clause). 불구하고 can be added to -(으)ㄴ/는데도 to add extra emphasis.

Conjugation is the same as the regular 는데 :

Verb + 는데도

Adj. + 은데/ㄴ데도

Past tense: 았/었/했는데도

Noun + 인데도

Past tense nouns: 이었는데도/였는데도

Example sentences:

어제 푹 잤는데도 오늘 많이 피곤하네요. = Although I got a good sleep, I am really tired today.

일요일인데도 일해야 된다고요? = You have to work even though it’s Sunday?

공부를 마뉴이 하지 않았는데도 시험을 합격하게 됐습니다. = Despite the fact that I didn't study much, I ended up passing the test.

기는 하지만, -기는 -지만 = But

Usage: This is different than 하지만 alone, 하지만 just expresses a simple contrast. When you acknowledge the situation in the first sentence, but want to express a complete different/opposite view or opinion in the second sentence. Kind of like 는데도 but different still. The subject of both sentences must be the same.

If you use the second form (-기는 -지만) you will repeat the verb or adjective twice back to back. 기는 can be shortened to -긴.

How to conjugate:

A/V past tense: 가는 했지만 | -기는 -았/었지만

A/V present tense: 기는 하지만 | -기는 -지만

A/V future: 기는 하겠지만 | -기는 -겠지만

Example sentences:

저녁으로 자짱면을 먹기는 먹었지만 많이 안 먹었어요. = I had 자짱면 for dinner, but I didn’t eat much.

그 원피스가 예쁘기는 하지만 가격이 너무 높은 것 같아요. = (I acknowledge that) This dress is pretty, but I think the price is too high.

친구 생일이라 파티 하긴 하겠지만 그렇게 크지 않을 거야. = It’s my friends birthday, so we’ll have a party, but it won’t be that big.

A/V-(으)ㄴ/-는 반면에 = but, while

Usage: Can also be translated as “on the other hand”. Basically you can express that two things are opposite. Also used to state both positive and negative characteristics of thing. The alternate form is A/V-(으)ㄴ/는 데 반해 (same meaning)

How to conjugate:

Adjective + -(으)ㄴ 반면에 / (-으)ㄴ 데 반해

Consonant - 은 | Vowel - ㄴ

Verb + -는 반면에 / -는 데 반해 (Present)

Verb + -(으)ㄴ 반면에 / -(으)ㄴ 데 반해 (Past)

Consonant - 은 | Vowel - ㄴ

Example sentences:

지하철은 빠른 반면에 출퇴근 시간에는 사람이 많아요. = While the subway is fast, it is crowded during rush hour.

저는 운동은 잘하는 반면에 공부는 못해. = While I am good at sports, I am not a good student.

그는 커피를 싫어하는 반면에 차는 좋아합니다. = He hates coffee, but he loves tea.

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