Friday, August 07, 2009

"동티란...받게 된다는 재앙을"?

Today I read about the Korean expression 동티가 나다, which originally meant "to suffer the wraft of the earth gods" for digging in sacred ground or harming the rocks, trees, or other parts of the land in some way. 동티 referred to the punishment you would incur from the gods. Though some Koreans may still fear the earth gods, the expression can also be used to refer to incurring trouble in general.

Anyway, the Korean explanation was as follows:

'동티'란 건드려서는 안 될 땅을 파거나 돌을 다치거나 나무를 베었을 때 지신이 성을 내어 받게 된다는 재앙을 가리키는 말이다.

The portion of the expression I have highlighted in red caught my eye because nothing was mentioned about what was received (받게 된다). For example, shouldn't it have been written as either "지신이 성을 내어 받게 된 재앙을" or "지신이 성을 내어 벌이 받게 된다는 재앙을"?

If you use 받게 된다, then there should be a full sentence in front of it, shouldn't there? However, since nothing was mentioned about what was received, it is an incomplete sentence, isn't it?

I assume that the writer wanted to say that a "disaster" (재앙) would "be received" (받게 된다는 재앙을), but is such a construction grammatically correct? It doesn't seem right to me, but both my dictionary and the book I am reading wrote it that way.


  1. Jerry, it was the person who did the action of the first part

    '동티'란 건드려서는 안 될 땅을 파거나 돌을 다치거나 나무를 베었을 때

    thank you for the explanation of 동티 I will try to remember that one.

  2. actually, you are correct, on reading it a second time, it looks like it's just modifying 재앙 , but if your conclusion is correct (with which in this post I am agreeing with) I fail to see a problem with the post as this would be a relative clause modifying 재앙, for example, "the disaster which should be delivered" so in English as well the object (?? the person to whom the disaster should be delivered :) ) ... is not spoken, either.


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