Koreans use formal verbs in many business and public speaking situations. Newscasters speak in unremitting formal tones; business people and shop owners will often use the formal when speaking to clients and customers; people use it with those who are significantly older; public officials use the formal when campaigning; even friends and associates sometimes use the formal with one another to express respect, humility or deference to the other person.
Korean Formal Verbs
Making formal verb endings in Korean is very similar to making honorific polite verb endings. Find a verb in the dictionary and drop the -다 dictionary ending to get the verb base. If the letter at the end of the verb base is a vowel, then add -ㅂ니다 to the verb base. If the letter at the end of the verb base is a consonant, then add -습니다 to the end of the verb base. Note that the ㅂ is followed by an ㄴ and is therefore pronounced as an ㅁ since “mn” is easier to say than “pn”
|English meaning||Dictionary form||Base||Honorific polite form|
|If the verb ends in a consonant after dropping -다||wear [clothing]||입다||입-||입습니다|
|want to [+verb]||싶다||싶-||싶습니다|
|If the verb ends in a vowel after dropping -다||to do; make||하다||하-||합니다|
|be right back||갔다오다||갔다오다-||갔다옵니다|