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V-는 길에, 는 길이다 = On the way to/from


안녕허세요 여러분. It's Koreanstudyjunkie here and in this post, I'll share with you how to use the grammar 는 길에 properly.



Movement Verb + 는 길에


In the simplest of terms, 는 길에 is used to describe something that happens on your way to/from somewhere. The word 길 in Korean translates to “street” or “road”. There's a grammar structure attached before 길, when used as the noun in the ~는 것 principle (~는 길). To put it simply 는 것 is for using verbs to describe the noun in front of it.


Example:

먹는 음식 - the food I eat, the food I'm eating

보는 영화 - the movie I watch, the movie I'm watching



When 길 is described by a preceding phrase, we can express that somebody is on their way to or from a place. An important detail to note is that we always need to use a "movement" verb before 는 길에. While other verbs that dont represent movement technically can come before it, that will completely change the meaning of "on one's way to/from".


Movement verbs are exactly as they sound, they describe moving from one place to another in some kind of way. (Words like 가다, 오다, 들어가다, 들어오다, 돌아가다, 돌아오다, 다니다, and so on - click here to learn what's the difference between words that use 가다 and 오다)


And lastly, ~에 is attached to 길 in the ~는 길 form. The meaning then becomes 'while one is on route coming or going somewhere, he/she stopped to do something.'


Doesn't seen too hard, right? The rest of this lesson will mainly consist of example sentences.



Example Sentences:

수업에 가는 길에 친구를 만났어요. = On my way to class, I met my friend.

친구를 만나러 나가는 길에 선물을 사려고 해요. = On my way out to meet a friend, I'm going to buy a gift.

마트에 가는 길에 이 편지를 보내 줄래요? = Can you send this letter on your way to the mart?

퇴근하는 길에 피자를 샀어요. = I bought pizza on the way home from work.

제가 집에 가는 길에 빵을 사 줄까요?= On my way home, should I buy some bread (for you)?

여기 오는 길에 타이어는 펑크 났어요. = I got a flat tire on my way here.

제가 회사에 가는 길에 딸이 학교에 데려왔어요. = I take my daughter to school on the way to work.

집에 오는 길에 맛있는 것을 사 주면 안 돼요?= On your way home, can you buy something delicious please?

퇴근하는 길에 버스에서 우연히 친구를 만났어요. = I met my friend by chance on the way home on the bus.

음식을 가져오는 길에 포크를 갖다 주세요= On your way back from getting/bringing food, can you get/grab me a fork?



2 RULES TO KEEP IN MIND:

  • The subject has to be the same within 1 sentence.

  • '-는 길에' is not used together with the tense endings '-았/었/했- and -겠-.



-는 길이다 = On The Way To/From


There's another form of this grammar that you may have seen around. This form can be used at the end of your sentence. Remember earlier I said that 는 것 is describing the noun in front of it, 길


제가 학교에 가는 길.. = The school I am going to..

제가 집에 오는 길... = The house I'm coming to..


Only by adding 에 do we have the meaning of stopping by somewhere else to do a different action. Therefore, if we keep it in the form 는 길, we can create a simple meaning of just "be on the way to/from" without stopping anywhere.


제가 학교에 가는 길이에요 = I am on my way (going) to school.

제가 집에 오는 길이에요 = I am on my way (coming) home.



More Example Sentences:

장을 보러 가는 길인데 혹시 필요한 것이 있어요?= I’m heading out to buy groceries, by chance do you need anything?

지금 회사에서 나오는 길이에요= I’m on my way out of the office.

우리는 경기장에 경기를 보러 들어가는 길이에요= We are (on our way) going into the stadium to watch a game.

난 어제 공부하러 도서관에 가는 길이었어= I was on my way to the library to study.

제가 지금 집에 가는 길이라서 20분 후에 또 전화하면 안 돼요?= I am on my way home right now, so can you call me back in 20 minutes?


 

That's all for this lesson guys! Thanks for reading.

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