Usage of 거의 and ~ㄹ/을 뻔 했다 

 September 3, 2021

By  Smriti

Learning grammar is one of the most difficult things for Korean language learners. On this blog we will try to help you learn Korean grammar in the quickest and easiest way possible. This blog will be helpful for those who are studying Korean language and want to improve their grammar skills.

Today we’ll see the usage of 거의 and ~ㄹ/을 뻔 했다 with some example sentences.

Adverb 거의 is very common and is used in daily conversation.  It is equivalent to " almost / hardly / nearly " in English.

Usage of 거의

It can mean either of the three based on the context of the conversation. 

Eg : 

I hardly ate. 

I almost ate. 

I nearly ate. 

Nuances of the above three sentences is slightly different from each other and the difference could be easily understood by the English speakers but the word 거의 used by the Koreans is the same for all three. 

To learn the usage of 거의 is very easy. You just need to see some examples and you would understand the concept behind the usage of the adverb 거의.

1) 난 돈이 거의 없어.

I’ve got hardly any money.

2) 거의 갈 시간이 되었다.

It’s almost time to go.

3) 그는 거의 죽을 뻔했다.

He’d come close to death.

4) 병은 거의 비어 있다.

The bottle is nearly empty.

5) 지난 여름에는 비가 거의 안 왔다.

It hardly rained at all last summer.

6) 우리 반 아이들 거의 모두가 파티에 왔다

Almost all of my classmates were at the party.

7) 그는 가진 돈을 거의 모두 잃었다

He lost almost all his money.

8) 주차장에는 거의 백 대의 차가 있었다

There were nearly a hundred cars in the parking lot.

9) 도로에는 차가 거의 없었다

There were hardly any cars on the road.

I hope you properly understood the usage of 거의.  Regular practice would help you understand more properly. 

There's another way of expressing almost, hardly or nearly in Korean and that is ~ㄹ/을 뻔 하다

뻔 is a bound noun which is used with 하다 like 수 with 있다.

A bound noun 뻔 indicates that a certain event could happen but eventually did not happen.

It has the nuances of satisfaction. There's a sense of " 다행이다 ". It can be understood as when you might use the expression " That was close. " 

  • ㄹ 뻔하다 Is used when the verb stem ends with a vowel. 
  • 을 뻔하다 Is used when the verb stem ends with a consonant.

Lets see some example sentences :

1) 울 뻔 했어.

I almost cried. ( But I didn't.)

2) 그녀는 짙은 연기에 거의 질식해 죽을 뻔했다.

She almost choked to death in the thick fumes. ( But she didn't die )

3) 난 바람에 거의 날아갈 뻔 했다.

I was almost blown over by the wind. (But thank goodness that didn't happen.)

4) 그는 너무 조심성 없이 차를 몰아서 사람들을 칠 뻔했다

He was driving so carelessly he almost ran over people.

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  1. TOPIK – The Complete Guide & 2. TOPIK Levels and Passing Marks. You can also Practice Online with TOPIK GUIDE Mock Tests.

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Learning Korean can be tricky, especially when the goal of your learning is conversation. If you’ve ever attempted to speak Korean but were unable to, then hopefully you’ll find this post helpful.

Thank you for reading. If you have any questions or suggestions. Comment down below.

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