Tuesday, February 23, 2010

What not to name your children...

Over a few drinks after Korean class this weekend our group of half Koreans/ half forigners started talking about names that sound really bad in eachother's language. We got quite a bit of amusement talking about various terrible names, so I thought I'd provide you a list, so as to avoid any awkward naming for your children in the future.

Korean names that sound terrible in English:
석범- suk bum
오유석- Oh yu suk
민지- Min Ji (British English)

English names that sound terrible in Korean
Josephina- 조세피나 (sounds a bit like something else)
George- 조지

I think there might have been another few more, but I'll update if I can remember them. Please feel free to add to the list in the comments section.

On a similar note (well, not really) we also discussed some simple jokes in Korean. I was amused by these:

이마트 반대말 뭐에요?

세종대왕이 만든 우유 이름은 뭐에요?
아야어여오요 우유.

I'd translate this, but they are play on words that would just take too much explaination. If you ask me, I'll translate specific words for you if needed.

Do you know any other good jokes in Korean?


  1. hahaha loving the Sejong joke <3 x3

  2. Two other names that are hard for Koreans to say: Vivian and Lilith.

    Also, Harmony is a lovely name, but it sounds like the Korean word halmoni, which means grandmother. Nobody wants to go through grade school named Grandmother

  3. Funny jokes! I told them in the office and got laughs from all the Korean folks.

    Also, for Korean names, it's a good idea to exclude dong (동) or seok (석) in general.

  4. Maggie is another one: 메기 (catfish)