This expression is mostly used when expressing the cause or situation of ‘negative result.‘ (It becomes a little awkward when used to express the cause of ‘positive result.’)

 

탓이다

Example sentences)

1)

A: 왜 우리 팀이 졌는지 생각해 봐.

Think about why out team lost.

B: 모두 제 탓입니다. 제가 팀을 잘 이끌지 못했습니다.

It’s all my fault. I didn’t lead the team well.

2)

A: 시험을 망쳤어. 난 처음부터 교수님이 마음에 들지 않았지.

I messed up on my test. I didn’t like the professor from the beginning.

B: 그건 공부를 하지 않은 네 탓이야.

It’s your fault because you didn’t study.

3)

A: 오늘 못 만날 것 같아. 지금 병원에 왔거든.

I don’t think we can meet today. I am at a hospital.

B: 병원? 무슨 일이야?

A hospital? What happened?

A: 아침에 부엌에서 넘어졌어. 다 언니 탓이야. 어젯밤에 요리하고 하나도 정리를 안 해놨거든.

I fell in the kitchen this morning. This is all my sister’s fault. She didn’t clean up the place after she cooked last night.

B: 얼마나 다쳤어?

How much are you hurt?

A: 팔을 삐었어. 며칠 안에 괜찮아질 거야.

I twisted my arm. I should be okay in a few days.

-(으) ㄴ / 는 탓에

Example sentences)

1)
A: 눈 오는데 산책할래요?

It’s snowing. Do you want to go for a walk?

B: 아니요. 날씨가 추 탓에 밖에 나가기가 싫어져요.

No. I don’t feel like going outside because of the cold weather.

2)

A: 폰 충전하는 걸 잊어버렸다고?

You forgot to charge your phone?

B: 응. 기억력이 안 좋은 탓에 자주 잊어버려.

Yeah. I forget it often because I have bad memories.

A: 연락이 안 돼서 걱정했잖아.

I was worried that I couldn’t reach you.

B: 이제 안 잊어버릴게.

I won’t forget again.

3)

A: 무슨 일이니? 괜찮아?

What’s wrong? Are you okay?

B: 별거 아니에요. 준비운동을 하지 않은 탓에 다리에 쥐가 났어요.

It’s nothing. I got a cramp in my leg because I didn’t do a warm-up exercise.

A: 저 쪽에서 좀 쉬렴.

You should get some rest over there.

Other uses

Example sentences)

1)

A: 왜 그렇게 화가 나 있어?

Why are you so mad?

B: 요즘 일이 잘 안 풀려. 전부 다.

Things are not going well. I mean everything.

A: 무슨 일이야?

What’s the matter?

B: 잘 모르겠어. 그리고 친구들도 다 짜증 나.

I don’t know. And my friends are all being jerks, too.

A: 남 하지 말고 진짜 원인이 뭔지 잘 생각해 봐.

Stop blaming others, and try to find out what the real reason is.

2)

A: 운전할 때 말 걸지 말라고 했잖아!

I asked you not to talk to me while I’m driving!

B: 무슨 소리야? 난 브레이크를 밟으라고 했잖아!

What are you talking about? I told you to hit the brakes!

C: 지금 네 가릴 때가 아니잖아!

This is not the time to blame each other!

B: 알았어. 병원으로 옮기자.

Okay. Let’s take him to the hospital.

3)

A: 아무도 그 일을 예상하지 못했어.

No one saw that coming.

B: 이런 경우에는 누구 을 해야 할지 모르겠어.

In cases like this, I don’t know whom to blame.

A: 빨리 해결 방법을 찾아 보자.

Let’s find solutions quickly.

Quiz

Translate the following sentences in Korean, using ‘탓이다’ and ‘-(으)ㄴ 탓에.’

  1. This is all my brother’s fault. He broke the window and ran away.

→ ___________________________________________________________.

  1. How is this my fault? You didn’t study, and that’s why you messed up on the test.

→ ___________________________________________________________.

  1. I can’t carry all of the books because they are so heavy.

→ ___________________________________________________________.

  1. Because there are bad rumors about him, his reputation is not so good.

→ ___________________________________________________________.

  1. There is nothing I can wear because I’m too tall.

→ ___________________________________________________________.

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