If the word 오른 is related to 옳은, it mean that in the Korean language, these concepts are associated, like in English. But no association between these two concepts is found in Japanese or Chinese, which presumably have had much more mutual influence with Korean than English. Isn't it interesting? Is there a linguistic or historical explanation to it? The two concepts meant by the word "right" are both very basic to human cognition, so one would assume that if they are associated in one culture, they are more likely to be to associate in neighboring cultures than in a culture very far apart.


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It is not a coincidence. There is another similar word, 바른, which means "right" as in "correct" as well as "the right-hand side", just like "right" in English. 바르다 in fact seems closer to "right" than 옳다. You can think of 바르다 (right/straight in shape or in morality) as right or upright, and 옳다 (morally right) as righteous. There is also 올바르다 (used in both senses like 바르다) which combines the two.

So English and Korean share this interesting artifact of etymology.

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