Green Crescent is a professional language provider specializing in Korean translation. We offer document translation services in such diverse areas as business, legal, medical, technical, financial, scientific, government, engineering, software, gaming, and IT just to name a few. We also perform related services in desk top publishing, graphic design, transcription, copywriting, as well as website localization. We can also perform translations in non-English language pairs.
Korean Language (한국어) is spoken on the Korean Peninsula (North and South Korea) and also on the mainland of Asia in the Yanbian-Korean Autonomous Prefecture of China. It is also spoken by the Korvo-saram in territory that was once part of the USSR. About 78 million people speak Korean world-wide, with large concentrations in North and South America, Australia, China, Japan and the Philippines.
The written language is now called “Hangui,” which evolved from borrowed characters of Chinese origin (called Hanja) and then molded by Sejong the Great in the 15th century into the current writing system. Korean is not a tonal language, like Chinese, and, unlike Chinese, it uses phonetic characters rather than ideographs to express words. The alphabet has 14 consonants and 8 vowels. Unlike Chinese and Japanese, Korean uses spaces between words and punctuation much like European languages. Traditionally it was written top-to-bottom, right-to-left, but in modern times is written like Western languages.
In the South, the spoken language is most often called Hangungmal or Hangugeo, which means "national language." In the North and in Yanbian China it is called Chosŏnmal or Chosŏnŏ. The Koryo-saram call it Goryeomal or “Korean language.” Korean is spoken in approximately nine different dialects, the most prominent of course, being those of Seoul and Pyongyang.
Grammatically, Korean is "agglutinative,” meaning that it handles grammatical functions by adding on prefixes, suffixes and word particles, rather than making internal changes to the root word. The sentence structure is basically “subject-object-verb,” unlike most Western languages.
Korean, like Japanese and many other Asian tongues, pays close attention to the relationship of the speaker with the person spoken to and with the person spoken about. The forms used for those “spoken about” are called honorifics (like "her royal highness" when speaking of the queen). The forms used for those "spoken to" (the audience) are called speech levels. Korean has many special nouns and honorific verb suffixes for indicating superiority of the object of the sentence over the status of the speaker. There are also seven different speech levels, each with its own distinctive grammar, ranging from common at the bottom to a high level of formality at the top. More formal speech levels are used as a sign of respect.
Over half of the words in the Korean vocabulary can be traced to Chinese origin, particularly those relating to abstractions. While many came from written Chinese, several were created in Japan or in Korea, but expressed with Chinese characters. Korean uses both an indigenous numbering system and also one based on Chinese numerals. In modern times, many words have come into Korean from European languages as well.
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