Expression of the Week

Yeon-ae: 이제 됐어, 안 배울래.
I’m through. I don’t want to learn anymore.
Jin-gook: 에이, 벌써 포기하게?
Giving up already?
Yeon-ae: 좀 쉬자.
Let’s take a break.
Jin-gook: 그러지 말고, 한 번 더 해보자.
Don’t give up. Let’s try one more time.
Yeon-ae: 못 하겠어.
I can’t do it.

못 하겠어 (I can’t do it)

못하다 – an auxiliary verb used to indicate that and action in the preceding statement was completed or that one does not have the ability to do it.

Casual – 못 하겠어
Polite – 못 하겠습니다

>> [못 하겠어] means “I can’t do it” but often has the nuance that the person will no longer continue or will quit.
Ex) 이제 더 이상 못하겠어 = I can’t do it anymore (I quit).

>>[못하다] in the adjective form can also mean “at least”
Ex) 운동장에는 못해도 10명이 넘는 아이들이 놀고 있었다.
=There were at least 10 kids playing in the playground.