How to count in Korean up to 100

Learning how to count in Korean is quite simple, and not as challenging when compared to other Asian languages like Japanese, Mandarin, or Cantonese.
Counting in Korean, like any language, just takes a little practice and repetition to get proficient in no time.

How to count in Korean

Keep in mind that there are actually two ways to count in Korean. There is the native Korean number system (hangul) and the Sino-Korean number system (hanja).
Each version is used and applied depending on the context. The differences will be illustrated later below.

Counting in Korean | 1 – 10

Let us start by learning how to count to 10 in the native system.

  • 1: 하나 (Hana or Hah nah)
  • 2: 둘 (Dul or Dool)
  • 3: 셋 (Set or Seht)
  • 4: 넷 (Net or Neht)
  • 5: 다섯 (Dausut or Dah suht)
  • 6: 여섯 (Yeosut or Yuh suht)
  • 7: 일곱 (Ilgup or eel gob)
  • 8: 여덟 (Yeodul or yuh duhl)
  • 9: 아홉 (Ah-hope or ah hob)
  • 10: 열 (Yuhl)

How to pronounce Korean Numbers

Counting to 10 in the Sino-Korean System (Hanja)

The writing system of many Asian countries such as Japan and Korea were influenced by China. Originally, Korean language used Chinese characters prior to creating their own native writing system. This is how the Sino-Korean counting system came about.

Here is how to count in Korean using the Sino-Korean:

  • 1: 일 (il)
  • 2: 이 (Ee)
  • 3: 삼 (sam)
  • 4: 사 (sa)
  • 5: 오 (oh)
  • 6: 육 (yook)
  • 7: 칠 (chil)
  • 8: 팔 (pal)
  • 9: 구 (goo)
  • 10: 십 (sip)

Counting the multiples of 10 in Korean

Once you have learnt how to count up to ten, the next step is to learn the multiples of 10 – 20, 40, 50, 60, 70, 80, 90.

When counting past 10 in Korean, you simply combine the multiples of 10 as the suffix to the number between 1 and 10.

For example, 10 is Yuhl (열) – so 11 would be Yuhl Hana (열하나), 12 would be Yuhl Dool (열둘), 13 is Yuhl Seht; and on and on. The same would apply to 20, 30, 40, etc.

Korean Numbering System in Martial Arts

When accounting for first, second, third, fourth, etc. in Korean martial arts; like say – first Dan Black Belt, or Third Degree Black Belt – the Sino-Korean system is common method used to count in Korean.

The Black Belt Dan rank levels would be numbered in Korean as Il Dan, Ee Dan, Sam Dan, Oh Dan, etc.

Practicing your Korean is really simple, and happens even more naturally when studying martial arts. We incorporate Korean terminology into our Hapkido training. So it’s only natural to become proficient at counting, and pick up more Korean words through the course of one’s training.

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