Level 7 Lesson 11 / Making Things Happen (Causative)


Welcome to our “causative” lesson. In English, when you say that you “make something bigger” or “to make someone sit down”, you need the verb “make” but in Korean, you can attach a single suffix to the verb and the verb can take on the causative meaning. For example, 녹다 means “to melt”, and when you want to say “to make something melt”, you can say 녹이다 instead of 녹다. Listen to this lesson to learn more about these suffixes, 이/히/리/기/우/구/추.

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!

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

Level 7 Lesson 11 / Making Things Happen (Causative)
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  • Ooooooooooooh~~~ ^^

  • Rigo

    Seems a little difficult , passive voice requires a lot of practice
    Thanks for your hard work

  • Adam

    Great! Causative verb conjugation is exactly what I need more practice in, so this lesson comes at the perfect time for me. Thank you!!

  • Stephanie

    wow~ thanks a lot, this is exactly what I’ve been looking forward since I beggining to learn korean. It’s kinda hard, but not impossible. I’ve started since february study by myself and just found your website a couple weeks ago through haru korean. I listening almost all your podcasts lessons – except the ones which I’m confident enough about – now I’ll watch your series. Thank you very much. It’s an amazing effort you are puting on teach us korean. OMG my comment have passed what I’ve expect to say LOL Well, I’m sorry bout my ‘failish’, I’m brazilian and to be honest I’m just able to hear and read english kekeke
    Next time I’ll comment in korean ^^~ Hear you soon!

  • emoai17

    Can you make an example with “구”?

    • It’s very rare : ) 돋다 – 돋구다.

      “식욕을 돋구다” =- to increase one’s appetite

  • jae

    This is how language should be taught.. 🙂 I wouldn’t have to waste money on crappy “memorize” the phrase Korean Language Instruction books..

    감사합니다.. 🙂

  • Samier


    I am in the process of memorizing all the rules haha ^^


  • Carl

    This happens to be one of the harder grammar points of Korean, thanks for making it clearer.

  • 이거 어려워서 더 예를 보여 주면 좋겠어요. 어쨋들 수고해서 고마워요 ^^

  • kdstills

    웃기지 마세요. 지금 생각해 보고 있어요.

  • Michin_migukin

    “친구야, 오늘 밤 좀 재워 줄래?” means “Hey, can I sleep at your house tonight?” right? 이 사건에 이렇게 쓸 수 있어요?


    • Hi,

      I guess that it will be no problem if you translate it like it.
      However literally, the meaning is close to “Hey, can you let me sleep over at your house tonight?”.

      Thanks for your comment.

  • could you please make more sentences regarding the topic using the words you mentioned in this lesson?

  • zulkamal

    what’s the different between this sentences??

    1)머리를 잘라 주세요.

    2)머리를 잘려 주세요.

    hope you can help with this 단어…ㅎㅎ

    • Actually 잘려 주세요 is wrong expression. 🙂 잘리다 is the passive form of 자르다.

      It is impossible to ask someone to be cut, right? 🙂

      No. 1’s sentence is right.

  • tabiii

    I’m a little confused, because in one song they sing “근데 오늘따라 조금 달라 보여”. It is translated as “but today, you look a bit different”. But if the 보여 is causative, why is it translated like that? I’m confused D: please help someone.

  • maxwebber

    I’m in a little confused when I try to make a sentence with 읽히다.
    When I says: “He made me read all these books” should I says: ” 이책들을 다 읽혀요” or ” 이책들이 다 읽혀요”? And can I just drop the ” 저를” part like that?

    선생님들 진자 감사함니다!!! 수고하셨습니다!

  • Germaine

    At the start of the lesson, our teachers say there is no English equivalent for causatives, but I believe the “en” prefix does this to some extent. Examples:

  • Germaine

    Curiously, the lesson also uses examples with “en” as a suffix, making the base word causative:

  • 후안

    Brilliant lesson. Wonderfully explained.

  • margo

    does this work with descriptive verbs aswell?
    for example, by putting someone in a certain state in which he or she becomes unimportan, or when you make someone convident about something.
    thanks 🙂

  • Eman

    뭐라고 말했길래 그 사람 울리있어요? What did you say to make that person cry?

    자동차를 운전시켰어요. 사실대로 안 하고 싶 거든요. He made me drive the car but honestly I didn’t want to.

    그 선물을 열리있어요.

    감사합니다 (:

  • 하오라

    나는 그 사람을 웃겼어요

  • Lloyd

    안녕하세요! There is a small mistake on the PDF… 차다 and 채우다 are the wrong way round. 😉

  • Dania Freih

    1. 그 책은 친구가 저한테 읽혔어요.
    2. 경은 씨를 놀리지 마세요, 현우 씨.
    3. 엄마가 매일 아들을 일찍 재워요.

  • Hyuda

    여자를 울리는 남자가 나쁜 사람이에요.
    The man who makes a woman cry is a bad person 😀

  • Imogen Eve Blair

    그녀의 엄마가 접시 위에 있는 야체들를 다 먹게 했어요. = Her mother made her eat all the vegetables on her plate.
    제일 웃기는 시람이 누구에요? Who makes you laugh the most?
    한국어를 아주 열심히 공부시키는 이유가 뭐예요? = What makes you study Korean so hard/diligently .
    What is the reason you study Korean so hard.
    정말 행복시키는 것이 뭐예요? = What makes you really happy?
    What thing/s makes you really happy ? (literal translation)

  • Kam

    저는 14살 때부터 제 개를 키우기 시작했어요
    당신은 “난 제일”다고 말했으니까 보여 줘!