Troubles with comparatives

Discussion in '한국어 (Korean)' started by Shimauma, Jan 30, 2013.

  1. Shimauma New Member

    Hi again! I need a very special help this time: I'm having some troubles with the comparatives.
    I have this phrase: 퇴근시간에는 다른 때보다 교통 더 복잡하군요?
    I know that ...보다...더 means a comparison but I really don't understand how to use this structure! Can someone help me understand it and the phrase above?
    I'm really lost!
  2. youngbuts Senior Member

    I think '-보다' seems to have a common quality with 'than' in English. I would like to put your orginal sentence above in another word order to show you their similarity.

    1교통이 더 복잡해요, 2퇴근 시간에는 3다른 때보다요.
    1The traffic is more jamed 2at a clockout time 3than in any other hours.

    The traffic is more jamed =교통이 더 복잡해요,
    at a clockout time = 퇴근 시간에는
    than in any other hours. = 다른 때보다요

    Your sentnece, 퇴근시간에는 다른 때보다 교통이 더 복잡하군요, is right. But I can say also 교통이 더 복잡해요, 퇴근 시간에는 다른 때보다요, which is more like English word order. Although it is less natural, I can do that. We can understand the changed sentence, because Korean has suffixes, which indicate the case of words. Even when they have other unusual positions in sentnece, we know what is the subject, the object and the adverb. That's because they have suffixes, which inform us their cases. The -보다 is one of them, but -보다 don't have a case-giving ability. It just add another meaning to its nouns.

    Let's go back to your original sentence. The phrase 'than in any other times' seems to be the same as '다른 때보다' to me.
    다른 때=any other hours
    than = -보다 (in this contest they are similar.)
    But the problems is where the prepostion 'in' has went in Korean, which indicates the case of place adverb!

    The most big difference between them is 'than' is a preposition so it goes ahead a noun, but -보다 is kind of suffixes, to be more exactly, a helping suffixes(조사) in Korean, which give nouns a case, and add a subtle meaning to the nouns. Notice as someimes prepositions in English could comes before adverbs or other prepositions such as 'than in other hours' as well as nouns, 조사 that usually goes just only behind nouns sometimes combines with other 조사s as in 퇴근시간+에+는.

    Therefore, You could say 퇴근시간에는 다른 때보다 교통이 더 복잡하군요. I can understand the meaning, but it sounds abundant to me.

    도시에서보다는 시골이 더 살기가 좋아요.(possible but sounds a little bit abundant. I asked myself why it does sound abundant to me. Let's see the following sentences.)

    도시보다는 시골에서 살기가 더 좋아요.(natural. You could consider this phenomenon as omitting repeated words or giving nouns a freedom from a obligatory case. If we gave another 조사 like -에서 to the nouns, their case is fixed. But if we don't, they can get more plexibility. In English the phrase 'than' always come behind the word compared. So their cases are already fixed. But in Korean the phrase '-보다' could come before it as well as after it. So it is better for us that we don't fix the case. And it is possible only by omitting 조사.)

    도시보다는 시골에서 살기가 더 좋아요.(natural)

    도시보다는 시골이 더 살기가 좋아요. (natural)

    도시에서보다는 시골에서 살기가 더 좋아요. (natural and possible, but sounds a little bit abundant )
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2013
  3. Shimauma New Member

    Oh thank you! I had the worst time of my life for that sentence and now it's clear. I have just one more question: if I have any sentence with a comparative, the one that is more than the other one (or the one that is less than the other one) is marked by the subject particle 가?
  4. youngbuts Senior Member

    None that I think of.

    철수보다 미희가 더 크다.
    철수는보다 미희가 더 크다. (very awkard to me. To me in any way 철수 can not be the subject)

    -보다 is not kind of conjunction in Enlgish, which can lead a clause or a noun. It is a 조사.

    철수가 가는 것보다 미희가 가는 게 좋겠다. (We make a relative clause and make it modify a null noun '것', when we need a meaning of a clause. So it is impossible to us to say 철수는보다 미희가 더 크다. 미희 is the subject and 철수보다 is kind of an adverb phrase to me. But you can say the following:

    철수가 가는 것보다 미희가 가는 게 좋겠다.
    Because you can see in 철수가 가는 것이 좋겠다.... , 철수가 가는 것 can be a subject.
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2013
  5. Shimauma New Member

    Yes! If I have to translate "the taxi is faster than the bus" into korean, is it correct "버스보다 택시가 빠릅니다."? I marked "the taxi" with the 가 to express that THE taxi is faster, but this is just my conclusion. Is it correct? And if it is, where did the "더" go?
  6. 1. A은/는 B보다 빠르다. = A is faster than B e.g. 사람은 달팽이보다 빠르다. A man is faster than a slug.

    2. A이/가 B보다 빠르다. = B 보다 A가 빠르다. = A is faster than B e.g. 사람이 달팽이보다 빠르다. A man is faster than a slug.

    3. A은/는 B보다 더 빠르다 = A is much faster than B

    4. A이/가 B보다 더 빠르다 = B보다 A가 더 빠르다. = A is much faster than B

    You can say 택시가 버스보다 (더) 빠릅니다. , 택시는 버스보다 (더) 빠릅니다 or 버스보다 택시가 (더) 빠릅니다.
  7. Shimauma New Member

    So if I have "버스보다 택시가 빠릅니다." it means that the taxi is way faster than the bus, isn't it?
  8. Yes. 버스보다 택시가 더 빠릅니다. A taxi is much faster than a bus.
  9. Shimauma New Member

    Thank you so much :D! I really appreciate your explanation! Now it's all clear :)!
  10. You are welcome. Glad to hear that.

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