How To Say Something Bad Almost Happened In Korean
Conveying Near-Misses in Korean
The Korean grammar structure V + 을 뻔했다 vividly depicts situations where something undesirable almost transpired. The expression often suggests that the event was unintentional or unforeseen. To accentuate the close shave of the situation, 하마터면 can precede the statement.
It’s important to differentiate this structure from 거의, which translates to “almost” in English, but does not carry the same negative or unintended nuance.
If you fly direct, it takes almost (practically, mostly, as good as) 11 hours to fly from London to Seoul.
Near-Miss Situations with ‘을 뻔했다’
I almost missed the bus this morning because I overslept.
I almost forgot my hat!
When I was going down the hill on my bike, I was travelling so fast that I almost fell off.
Last year I almost died in a traffic accident.
When I saw my students wearing suits I almost didn't recognise them.
Intensifying with ‘하마터면’
I almost gave up learning Korean.
The last time I had an argument with my boyfriend we almost split up.
The ‘을 뻔했다’ structure provides a nuanced way to share stories of near-misses or events that almost took place. By grasping this structure, you can paint a clearer picture in your conversations, showcasing the potential gravity or significance of what might have occurred.