When you are saying a word or sentence deliberately slowly, speaking syllable by syllable in Korean (e.g., when spelling a text to students in a classroom, or talking on the phone), do the 받침 rules still apply?

For example, is 졸업 read as /졸 업/ or as /조 럽/?

Is 거짓말 read as /거 짇 말/ or as /거 진 말/?

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    For dictation in schools, the teacher would read the word aloud as it is pronounced, since the whole point is to get the students to figure out how it is correctly spelled. For spelling out something on the phone, however, one would probably read a word syllable by syllable. Commented Apr 8, 2020 at 23:57

2 Answers 2


I think both could happen. If you want to "spell out" each letter (= syllable) one by one, then you could read each letter in isolation - which would be analogous to an English speaker saying "gee arr ei dee you ei tee..."

On the other hand, if you are merely speaking slowly, you will more likely just slow down each syllable but still utter them "normally", so 거짓말 would still sound 거-진-말.


You would read each letter separately

졸 업 not 조 럽

This can be seen in a old-school 받아쓰기 exam (kinda likfe spelling bee) in which the speaker says the word slowly

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