Level 1 Lesson 21 / Negative Sentences / 안, -지 않다, 안 하다, 하지 않다

In this lesson, we are introducing how to form negative sentences in Korean. In Korean you can either add the word ‘안[an]’ before a verb or conjugate the verb into a negative form by using the verb ending ‘지 않다[ji an-ta]’ Find out how to do that and also practice with some sample sentences by listening to this lesson and as always, if you have any questions or feedback, we will be more than happy to hear them in the comment box!

Everyone, what do you NOT do? 뭐 안 해요?

Read about this grammar point at the Korean Wiki Project site

You can download both the PDF lesson notes and the MP3 audio track for this lesson below, and if you want to learn with our various textbooks and workbooks, you can get them on our online bookstore at MyKoreanStore.com. If you have any questions about this lesson, please leave us comments below!

Download PDF

Download MP3

Go to the Grammar Curriculum page to see all of our grammar lessons.

Level 1 Lesson 21 / Negative Sentences / 안, -지 않다, 안 하다, 하지 않다
Tagged on:                     
  • Mohammed Ismail 이수영

    I prefer use 안

    • Catsy

      You can’t have a preference.
      Different words suit different negations and the only way you can learn is by seeing them in use.

  • Genesis Martin

    can someone please write in hangul the word for “to not know”? it sounds like she is saying “mo-reu-da”?

    • Ana Alvarez


  • Miss-Gaara Rose

    Can someone explain to me why the the verb to throw away was conjugated with the 였어요 ending when it doesnt have a 하 ending. Shouldnt it have the ending 었어요? Or maybe did they
    make the 어 여 because the verb stem ends with 리. Thanks in advance.

  • 잭슨

    “미안해, 내 찌꺼기 버리지 않았어요…”
    ^^^^^^ 이것은 맞아요?

  • LyricalPhoenix

    I don’t do
    하지 않아요
    I didn’t do
    하지 않았요

    Please correct me if I’m wrong

    • Catsy


      All past tense adds double S letter and then EOYO.

  • erika

    how about jima? like ga-jima = don’t go

  • erika

    i also got confused with mot? so is it ihae mot haeyo or an ihae-sseoyo?

  • Pragya Kashyap

    안 가고싶어요
    Does this work for ‘i dont want to go’

    • MiRa Rie

      yeah I think it’s correct

  • 그가 안먹었어요.
    I did not eat it.
    Can it be translated to “I haven’t eaten it:?

    • ivan

      what is 그가?

    • MissChuk

      isn’t it supposed to be 그거 instead of 그가?
      그거 -The thing/ that one/ it
      그가 – He

  • Jonaye

    이거 매워요.그레서 안 먹어요.
    This is spicy. So I wont eat it.

  • Jim Awofadeju

    여동생이 안 달립니다.
    The younger sister doesn’t run.

    남동생이 우유를 좋아하지않습니다.
    The younger brother doesn’t like milk.

  • Leandro Guianan

    What is 배 in the phrase: “배 안 고파요.”?

    • Ivis Benavides

      배 in this case means “stomach” not “I”. The “I’m” is just implied since the verb was conjugated.

    • squijid

      “배 고파요” literally means “stomach is hungry.” that’s just how to say “i’m hungry”/”i’m not hungry” in korean.

    • Leandro Guianan

      맞습니다. 감사합니다 스귀짇씨! ^^,

  • Leandro Guianan

    1st B: 안 먹고 싶어요.

    I don’t know. The question was about wanting to eat. ^^,

  • A: 지금 공부해요?
    B: 아니요. 지금 안 공부하고 싶어요.
    A: 오늘 공부했어요?
    B: 아니요. 오늘 안 공부했어요.
    A: 언제 공부했어요?
    B: 아마도 지난주에…? 헤헤…

  • chill ceel

    나는 오늘도 안 공부했어요

  • 베스타

    A: 오늘 학교에 갔어요?
    B: 아니요… 학교에 안 갔어요…
    A: 진짜? 왜요?
    B: 나는 안 공부하고 싶어요…
    A: 미친…

    lol me everyday XD
    please tell me if i’m correct

    • Ivis Benavides

      나는 안 공부하고 싶어요–> 나는 공부 안 하고 싶어요
      Remember you have to add 안 before a verb. 공부하다 is made up of 공부(noun) + 하다(verb) so you have to separate the noun from the verb and add 안.

    • 베스타

      Thank you! Got it~

    • 칼립소

      Also, correct me if I’m wrong, but isn’t 갔어요 past tense and 오늘, meaning today, present or future, because if it was past tense you’d have to use 아까, meaning earlier today, instead?
      Other than that and the part that @Ivis Benavides corrected, it think it’s correct. It’s also extremely relatable. I’m usually part B in that scenario and my friends are part A.

    • Ivis Benavides

      오늘 just means today so it is fine to use it even in the past tense. Maybe you are confusing it with 이제 which does imply “from now on”.

  • Andrew

    배 고파요?
    네, 나 아직 안먹었어요!

    Can you say this?

    • 칼립소

      The reason they used 배 안 고파요, which literally translates to something akin to ‘my belly does not want it’, is because it is an idiomatic expression to mean ‘I am not hungry’. It is relatively similar to saying that your stomach is rejecting the action of eating.
      It can be used in positive form as well; if you were to write 배 고파요, which means ‘my belly does want it’, or ‘my stomach welcomes it’ – another idiom meaning ‘I am hungry’.
      It think what you’ve written, ‘네, 나 아직 안먹었어요’, which is more like ‘yes, (or no depending on whether you come from America, or not,) I haven’t eaten yet’, which could probably be written clearer as ‘네, 저 아직 안 먹었어요’.

  • Annie

    why do we need at add ‘bae’ in front of ‘han’ is the last sentence of the dialogue? Does it have a specific meaning?

    • 칼립소

      The use of 배 안 고파요 (bae an go-pa-yo), literally translating to something similar to ‘my belly does not want it’, is because it is an idiomatic expression meaning ‘I am not hungry’. It is relatively akin to saying that your stomach is rejecting the action of eating.
      It can also be used positively. You can write 배 고파요 (bae go-pa-yo), which means ‘my belly does want it’, or ‘my stomach welcomes it’, (another idiom,) with the meaning ‘I am hungry’.

  • Anthea

    Is it the same with adding aniyo at the end like for example:
    -안 매워요?
    It’s not spicy?
    -매워 아니요?

    Is it the same thing or is the second one like an alternative?

    • 칼립소

      My understanding of it is that 안 매워요 means ‘It’s not spicy?’, referring more to the taste of the food, whereas 매워 아니요 is closer to ‘It has no spice?’, which is more in reference to the actual addition of something like chilli or spice mix to the dish.

  • 칼립소

    Does this make sense?
    이거 매워요가, 그런데 안 너무는 매워요.

    • Ivis Benavides

      This wouldn’t be correct because the topic and subject marking particles should only be attached to nouns so you can’t do “매워요가” or “너무는”. Also, 안 should always come right before the verb. It would be best to say “이거는 매워요. 그런데 이거는 너무 안 매워요”

    • 칼립소

      Thank you so much for replying to all my comments. I think I’ve been trying to cram too much learning into too short a time, as I am a fairly slow learner. I started roughly a week and a half ago and am already forgetting basic structuring rules. Thanks again.

    • Ivis Benavides

      Yea you’ve learned a lot in a short period of time don’t forget to do some reviewing at least at the end of each level so you don’t forget some of the basics. But you are doing really well! Better than I was 2 weeks in. Anyways, good luck on your studies 화이팅!

  • Ain Farhana

    Can 버리다 turn into present tense 버리어요? So if it was used in methode 1 then it will be 안 버리어요? Is it correct?

    • 키간

      The present tense of 버리다 is 버려요. So it would be 안 버려요 or 버리지 않아요.

    • Ain Farhana

      Ahh alright, thank you!

  • Graziely Soares Pereira

    진짜 and 정말 means ‘really’. What’s the difference between them? I can put either of these in other sentences?

  • 조슈아

    선물 안 싶어요!
    I don’t want a present!

    자지 않아요.
    I don’t sleep.

  • Noor Alyousuf

    Method (1) “안”
    저는 술 안 마셔요. I don’t drink.
    저는 돼지고 안 먹어요. I don’t eat pork.
    이거 안 했어요. I didn’t do that.

    Method (2) “-지 않다”
    저는 토마토 좋아하지않아요. I don’t like tomatoes.
    저는 포기하지않아요. I don’t give up.
    그는 어제 자지않았어요. He didn’t sleep yesterday.

  • Noor Alyousuf

    If i want to say I’m not a bad person, can I say 저는 나쁜 사람 아니 아니에요. ? and if so, why?

    • Ivis Benavides

      No it would just be “저는 나쁜 사람 아니에요”. I’m not sure why you added the 아니. Did you mean to add 안이? if so, there’s no reason to do it since 아니에요 is already a negative.

  • Noor Alyousuf

    The verb ending 지않다 ends is ㅎ when we remove the 다 so why do we use 았어요 instead of 었어요?

    • Ivis Benavides

      Because the rule is to look at the last vowel which is ㅏ so you add 았어요.