Re: Q.'s about hanja

From: SoHee Kim (
Date: Tue Nov 07 2000 - 10:59:35 EST

My answers can be wrong. So Koreans, feel free to correct them.

Marco Cimarosti wrote:

> I have some questions about the usage of hanja (Chinese characters) in
> Korean.
> 1) Is it correct to say that hanja are only used for words derived from
> Chinese, and never for genuninely Korean words?

What do you mean by genuinely Korean words?
We had our own words even before Hangul was made. But this doesn't mean these
words are derived from Chinese. Before King SeJong made Hangul at 1446, since
we didn't have other characters to write, we used Hanja.
There are Korean words that can be written in Hangul or Hanja. And there are
some that can be written only in Hangul. There can be arguments about this but,
in my opinion, since we can write every words in Hangul, no need to use Hanja
unless we need to make the contents clear about the words with same writing and
different meaning.
If you are more interested in, check out

> 2) Is it true that hanja have been abolished in North Korea? When did this
> happen?

I am not sure about this.

> 3) How often are hanja used today, however? (All the Korean web pages I come
> across are totally in hangul, including

As far as I know some newspapers still use Hanja in order to convey the meaning
clearly. Some books too.

> 4) How do Koreans input hanja on computers?

We don't. No need to do so.


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