The Comparative Study of the Modalities of '-keyss' and '-(u)l kes' in Korean

`-겠`과 `-을 것`의 양태 비교 연구

  • Published : 2005.12.01


In this paper I propose the semantics of two modality markers in Korean, keyss and (u)1 kes. I compare the two modality markers with respect to some properties. First, keyss is used to express logical necessity while (u)1 kes can be used to express a simple prediction as well. Second, keyss expresses some logical conclusion from the speaker's own information state without claiming it is true. On the other hand, (u)1 kes expresses the claim that the speaker's prediction will be true. Third, the prediction of keyss is non-monotonic: it can be reversed without being inconsistent. However, that of (u)1 kes cannot. Fourth, (u)1 kes can be used freely in epistemic conditionals, but keyss cannot. Finally, when keyss is used, the prediction cannot be repeated. The prediction from the use of (u)1 kes can be repeated. To account for these differences, I propose that keyss is used when the speaker makes a purely logical presumption based on his/her own information state, and that (u)1 kes is used to make a prediction which is asserted to be true. This proposal accounts for all the differences of the two modality markers.