As I know, the verb 나가다 means "to leave", "to get out", "to exit".

I met many usages of this verb added to some other verbs, but I can't figure out it's functionality.

자주통일의 앞길을 힘차게 열어나가자! (open + get out)

조국과 혁명앞에 다진 맹세를 변함없이 지켜나가도록 하여야 합니다. (defend + get out)

Also, I found a form 화해나가다.

What do these sentences mean? How does the verb 나가다 affect on the verbs 열다, 지키다, 화하다?

  • Is this usage found specifically in the context of North Korea?
    – Vladhagen
    Sep 20, 2018 at 19:21
  • Maybe this construction is used also in South, but I haven't found an example in Papago. Sep 20, 2018 at 19:28
  • 1
    This is a fairly standard usage in Korean. Please consider removing the North-Korean tag
    – user17915
    Sep 21, 2018 at 0:14
  • No, this sentences are barely used in South Korea. This is North korea 'slogan', not South Korea. '자주통일, 조국과 혁명' these terms not used in South.
    – Dasik
    Sep 21, 2018 at 2:06
  • 1
    @Dasik is the question about the grammar form or about North Korean slogans? That's what the issue comes down to here. We use the North Korean tag specifically when the question is directly about North Korea itself.
    – Vladhagen
    Sep 21, 2018 at 2:47

1 Answer 1


Verb + 아/어/여 나가다 is sometimes used to form a compound verb with another verb, often in the context of a decisive action going forward.

Some examples:

앞길을 열어 나가자!: Let's open/clear the path (from here on)!

맹세를 변함없이 지켜나가도록 해 야 합니다: We must (decisively) keep this oath (from here on).

The form Verb + 아/어/여 나가다 can also just be used in simple compound to form words like 밀려 나가다 (밀리다 + 어 + 나가다), meaning "to push out, to clear out."

열대 다우림은 밀려 나갔다. The rain forests were razed.

회사에서 밀려 나갔다. He was pushed from the company.

Even in these uses, the addition of 나가다 indicates a sort of decisive finality.

I will also add that this form is found in many South Korean sources. It is not exclusive to North Korea.

  • Your explantion is perfect. But '자주 통일, 조국과 혁명' these term are used in North not South. '자주통일의 앞길을 힘차게 열어나가자! 조국과 혁명앞에 다진 맹세를 변함없이 지켜나가도록 하여야 합니다.' These sentences are north korea slogan.
    – Dasik
    Sep 21, 2018 at 2:11
  • 1
    That is likely true. The form under discussion is of course used in both North and South. I can see the OP sentences definitely being related to NK though. I've seen them used myself in that context.
    – Vladhagen
    Sep 21, 2018 at 2:35
  • Yeah, The form '나가다' is very often used in both North and South. Your explantion is very good and exact. 자주통일 is used in South but we usually use '평화통일', but used sometimes. 조국과 혁명 is very North-ish term. We don't use in terms of '조국과 혁명' . Also OP sentences are the sentence in '로동신문' . 로동신문 is North's state newspaper.
    – Dasik
    Sep 21, 2018 at 2:50
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    @jick We don't use either 농작물을 밀려 나갈까요 or 농작물을 밀어낼까요. we use '(농작물을) 수확하러 나가다. but very formal. We usually use like this: 고추 '따러' 나가자. or 감자 '캐러' 나가자. If you clear away crops (is clear away is destory? not harvest?), we use '갈아 엎다'. 갈아 엎다 is not harvest crops instead you destroy all the crops.
    – Dasik
    Sep 21, 2018 at 3:16
  • 1
    I have changed the example sentence about crops to an example about the rain forest. Hopefully this better reflects the use of the form.
    – Vladhagen
    Sep 21, 2018 at 15:04

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