Problems of Hangeul Romanization into Slovene


  • Iva ZIRALDO študentka na Oddelku za azijske in afriške študije, FFUL
  • Jasmina KROFIČ študentka na Oddelku za azijske in afriške študije, FFUL



Hangeul, romanization of Korean, McCune-Reischauer system, revized Romanization, Korean proper names, problems of romanization of Korean


Slovenian grammar does not deal with Korean language and words of Korean origin. Since the number of Korean words in newspapers and other media in Slovenia is increasing, and different writers romanize these words in different ways, a need exists for a uniform transliteration system as soon as possible in order to avoid misapprehensions.

The romanization of Korean is not a problem only in Slovenia but also in Korea. There are several systems of romanization. At the moment the Republic of Korea is using the Revised Romanization system, which was approved in the year 2000, while the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea uses the McCune-Reischauer system. The Republic of Korea stopped using the McCune-Reischauer system because of the inconvenient usage of diacritics and apostrophes. The problem of romanization of Korean consists not only in the difficulty of transcription but also the fact that not everyone follows the approved system. When writing proper names typically none of the existing systems is followed. Geographical names are written according to the Revised Romanization system, while names of universities, festivals etc., which include geographical names as well, are still written according to the McCune-Reischauer system.

Koreans are aware of the problem of romanization and recently there has been new discussion in the Republic of Korea about another revision and the unification of the romanization of personal names. There is, however, an established convention according to which each individual writes their own name as wished. Due to specific morphophonological characteristics of the Korean language, consistent Romanization is impossible without adequate knowledge of the language.

Since there are currently few Korean words used in Slovenian language an opportunity exists to establish an agreed spelling convention without the excessive revision that might be required later.


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Hyouk-Keun Kim, Korean Phonology for the KAEPS system. 25.6.1999. Dostopno na naslovu:

Kim-Renaud, Young-Key. 1987. Studies in Korean linguistics. Hanshin, Seoul.

Lee, Hyun Bok: Korean. V: Handbook of International Phonetic Association. Cambridge: The Press Syndicate of the University of Cambridge, 1999 str. 120 – 123.

Omniglot, Writing Systems and Languages of the World. 1998-2009. Dostopno na naslovu

Park Sun-young, Korean romanization could again see revision. JoongAng Ilbo. 8.7.2009 Dostopno na naslovu:

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3. 03. 2014



Technical notes

How to Cite

ZIRALDO, I., & KROFIČ, J. (2014). Problems of Hangeul Romanization into Slovene. Acta Linguistica Asiatica, 3(3), 71-84.