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For the double consonant ending ㄺ, here is what I have learned so far:

Pronounced as ㄱ basically, yet when followed by a ㄱ solid consonant, the pronunciation changes to ㄹ.

However I've heard at least 2 native speakers pronounce the word 밝다 as [발따] instead of [박따], which definitely is against the rule above.

Why would that be the case?

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  1. When the double final consonant (겹받침) 'ㄺ', 'ㄻ', and 'ㄿ' are followed by the vowel 'ㅇ' such as particles '이', '을' and '아', you pronounce both of the consonants as in

닭이 [달기], 닭을 [달글], 닭아 [달가], 밝음 [발금], 밝아 [발가], 읊어서 [을퍼서]

  1. When they are at the end of a word or followed by consonants, you don't pronounce 'ㄹ' as in

닭 [닥], 삶 [삼], 읊고 [읖꼬], 닭과 [닥꽈], 삶과 [삼과]

  1. In case of 용언 (predicate), however, if 'ㄺ' is followed by 'ㄱ', ㄹ should be pronounced:

맑게 [말께] [막께] (X), 묽고 [물꼬] [묵꼬] (X), 맑거나 [말꺼나] [막꺼나] (X)

But, before 'ㄷ', 'ㅈ' and 'ㅅ', ㄱ should be pronounced:

맑다 [막따], 밝다 [박따], 맑지 [막찌], 맑습니다 [막씁니다]

  • So the native speakers are pronouncing wrongly? I am 100% sure at least 2 native speakers said [발다] – 짱멋진만찢남 Jul 4 '16 at 15:07
  • @SuperCoolHandsomeGelBoy They are not native Korean speakers. Also, his pronunciation is closer to 박따 than 발다. He never pronounced it "발다". – user7 Jul 4 '16 at 15:09
  • Please don't insist "not native". The link just given is only the one I found on web immediately, yet I heard another 2, surely native speakers, saying like that. So they are wrong? – 짱멋진만찢남 Jul 4 '16 at 15:10
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    Thanks. In my mother language, even though there is clearly only one correct pronunciation for a word in the dictionary, it will exist that 80% of native speakers still pronounce wrongly, and they would thought it is right. That's why I am paying extra attention when there are nuances in pronunciation. – 짱멋진만찢남 Jul 6 '16 at 10:17
  • My Korean language teacher often gives examples, especially like the ones in this answer, where Korean native speakers get it wrong. I'd imagine almost any language (including English) has many native speakers who pronounce words incorrectly. – Eilon Jul 6 '16 at 23:19
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It would be rare to find a noun just sitting by itself in a sentence. Rather, in Korean, one of many particles (or other things) would be attached to it. For example: 닭과 닭만 닭이랑 닭이다 닭이나 etc… If the thing that attaches to these words starts with a consonant, the same rule from above applies, and only one of the two bottom consonants is pronounced. 닭과 – 닭만 (This sounds closer to “닥과 – 닥만”)

However, if the thing that attaches to these words starts with a vowel, the pronunciation of the final consonant, in theory, should move to the upcoming syllable. For example:

닭을 – 닭이다 (This should sound closer to “달글 – 달기다”… but I admit it does sound like 닥을 – 닥이다.) 닭 is a noun, but various things are also attached to verbs/adjectives as well that change pronunciation. The following are three common verbs in Korean that have this fourth letter (All verbs end with “~다” but don’t worry about that for now):

앉다 = to sit 읽다 = to read 없다 = to not have

Listen to the pronunciation of each of those words. You will notice that (just like the word “닭” above), because each of the four-letter syllables is followed by a consonant (다), only one of the two final consonants is pronounced. As you can here, the letter that is not pronounced is not the same is ever word. In 앉다, ㅈ is not pronounced (sounds like “안”) In 읽다, ㄹ is not pronounced (sounds like “익”) In 없다, ㅅ is not pronounced (sounds like “업”) If the thing that replaces “다” starts with a consonant, the same rule from above (with nouns) applies, and only one of the two bottom consonants is pronounced. For example, if 앉 is followed by a consonant:

앉겠다 – 앉고 (This sounds closer to “안겠다 – 안고”)

However, if the thing that replaces “다” starts with a vowel, the pronunciation of the final consonant moves to the upcoming syllable. For example, if 앉 is followed by a vowel:

앉아 – 앉으면 (This sounds closer to “안자 – 안즈면”) You can see the same phenomenon with all words that have this 4th letter. Let’s listen to “읽다” when “다” is replaced by something starting with a consonant compared to a vowel. Followed by a consonant: 읽겠다 – 읽고 (Sounds closer to “익겠다 – 익고”) Followed by a vowel: 읽어 – 읽으면 (Sounds closer to “일거 – 일그면”) Let’s do the same thing with 긁다 (to scratch) Followed by a consonant 긁겠다 – 긁고 (Sounds closer to “극겠다 – 극고”) Followed by a vowel 긁어 – 긁으면 (Sounds closer to “글거 – 글그면”) I used this link to answer your question. Read the whole page for more examples.

  • Outright wrong. 읽고 for def is pronounced as [일꼬] – 짱멋진만찢남 Jul 4 '16 at 2:09
  • howtostudykorean.com never gave enough info. regarding pronunciation. – 짱멋진만찢남 Jul 4 '16 at 2:37
  • That doesn't answer my question at all, plus. – 짱멋진만찢남 Jul 4 '16 at 3:01

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