How To Say Don't Count Your Chickens In Korean

Korean proverbs, known as 속담, are short expressions that encapsulate the wisdom, culture, and societal values of Korea.

Often passed down through generations, these expressions offer insights into the Korean mindset.

In this post, we’ll dive into a couple of popular 속담 and their modern applications.

김칫국부터 마시지 마라/마세요

Meaning: Don’t count your chickens before they’re hatched

Use this proverb when someone is being overly optimistic about a situation without seeing any concrete results.

아무것도 일어나고 결과가 아직도 안 나요. 하지만 혜택에 대해 생각해요.
Nothing has happened and you've not seen any results but you're already thinking about the benefits.
저는 서울에 있는 집을 찾아봐요. 그리고 새 자동차를 사고 싶어요...
I'm looking for a place to live in Seoul. And I want to buy a new car...
김칫국부터 마시지 마세요. 삼성 면접 잘 했는데 직업을 아직도 안 얻어요.
Don't count your chickens before they're hatched. You did well in the Samsung interview but you still haven't got the job yet.

싼 게 비지떡

Meaning: You get what you pay for

This proverb is used to indicate that the quality of an item is often reflective of its price.

아주 싼 상품을 사면 상품의 질이 나쁜 것으로 기대해야 돼요.
If you buy a very cheap product, you should expect it to be poor quality.
지난 주말에 이 시계를 시장에 싸게 샀아요. 하지만 오늘은 고장 나요!
I bought this watch cheaply from the market last weekend, but today it's broken!
싼 게 비지떡이죠? 시장에 싼 롤렉스를 사면 뭘 기대하겠어요?
You get what you pay for, right? If you buy a cheap Rolex from the market, what do you expect?


속담 are not just linguistic expressions; they are windows into Korean culture and psyche.

Understanding and using them can enrich one’s Korean language experience and provide deeper cultural insights.

Whether you’re studying Korean or just exploring the culture, embracing 속담 is a rewarding journey.

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