I was wondering if 닝겐 is pronounced 닌껜, same for 멋대로 as 머때로 and so on? Is the "g" in ㅇ pronounced differently than the "g" in ㄱ?

4 Answers 4


'ㅇ' in Jongseong(종성) is pronounced as ng[ŋ], as one character. So it shouldn't be separated to 'n' and 'g', thereby '닝겐' should be pronounced as ㄴ(n)ㅣ(i) ㅇ(ŋ) - ㄱ(g) ㅔ(e) ㄴ(n).


This word comes from Japanese word にんげん (meaning 'human' [인간]), which is pronounced NEEN-gen. This is how I would basically pronounce 닝겐. Because 닝겐 is a transliteration of Japanese (which has no -ng sound), I would suppress any emphasis on the 이응 받침 (ㅇ on the bottom of the first syllable).

  • 4
    Well, as far as I know Koreans usually don't pay attention to the original sound of Japanese loanwords. (오뎅 is always 오뎅, never 오덴, and 짬뽕 is always 짬뽕.) So it might be better to read 닝겐 as exactly written, in my opinion. (Though, it's not a "real word" in Korean, so who knows.)
    – jick
    Commented Nov 27, 2018 at 5:24
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    As a native Korean speaker, I agree with @jick
    – JSong
    Commented Dec 4, 2018 at 9:46
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    Actually, as far as I understand, Japanese does have an "ng" sound - they have one nasal sound that, before a velar like /k/ or /g/ is pronounced as the velar nasal /ŋ/ (hence 닝겐 not 닌겐); also, it is an uvular nasal /N/ when it ends a word (uvular nasal is closer to ㅇ then ㄴ, hence 오뎅). See en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_phonology#Moraic_nasal
    – gaeguri
    Commented Dec 6, 2018 at 9:54

As far as how "닝겐" is pronounced, unless you are intentionally want to speak in different way, I'd say native Korean language tongue would have no problem with just saying "닝겐" as it is.


닝겐 : ning - gen / gaen 닝: ning, 겐 : gen / gaen 니: ni ,o: ng

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