Korean 101

When talking about someone superior in status, a speaker or writer usually uses special nouns or verb endings to indicate the subject's superiority. Generally, someone is superior in status if he/she is an older relative, a stranger of roughly equal or greater age, or an employer, teacher, customer, or the like. Someone is equal or inferior in status if he/she is a younger stranger, student, employee or the like. On rare occasions (like when someone wants to pick a fight), a speaker might speak to a superior or stranger in a way normally only used for, say, animals, but it would be foolhardy to do so without first seriously considering the consequences to one's physical safety.

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