Book review: 100 Korean proverbs/sayings

Basic details:
Title: 유행어보다 재치있는 우리 100대 속담

Level: intermediate

ISBN: 978-89-15-08079-9
Publishing house: Samsung Books (삼성출판사)
Number of stories: 100 – one per proverb

Price: 12,000 원 / $12
Purchased from: twoChois
Click here to be directed to the book on twoChois

Weight: 710 g


Why buy this book?
Proverbs are important in a language, and they help one understand the people who use them. Learning a language without ever learning any of the proverbs associated with it makes for a language learner who may know the words used, but not the meaning behind them in the given context.

I remember when learning Italian, we also had to look at proverbs. One day we were asked to go home and find some Italian proverbs and sayings as preparation for a class. One that I found roughly went “if you steal a little you go to jail, if you steal a lot you have a career”. I cannot vouch for the authenticity of this saying, but judging by Italian politics there might be an element of truth to it and to this day I still remember it!


Target audience:
First and foremost Korean children – since it is a children’s book. The book contains 100 stories, each explaining the meaning of a proverb through a story.
This set up means that language learners improve vocabulary as well as learn the proverbs.


The odd observations
It seems that a lot of the characters in the stories are either angry, afraid, or stressed out if judging by the illustrations.
I guess I will know if that holds true once I make it through the book.


Being an illustrated childrens’ book, you will also learn about Korean sounds through the “captions” accompagnying the individual cartoons. There are speech bubles as well as outbursts and sounds such as the sound it makes if somebody hits his/her head against something.


3 thoughts on “Book review: 100 Korean proverbs/sayings

  1. twochois

    Reblogged this on twoChois and commented:
    One of our customers posted a review on 100 Korean proverbs/sayings (유행어보다 재치있는 우리 100대 속담). Please visit and find out about pros and cons of the book before you buying it. 🙂

    1. koreanlearner Post author

      Hello 🙂
      I like the book, but I still have great difficulties reading it, having to look up soooo many words. Seeing that you have studied Korean at uni I don’t think you will have the same problems 🙂 I think it’s a great way to become more familiar with other aspects of Korean culture that are not necessarily covered in text books since this is written for Koreans.


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