초록 close

There are many unsolved issues in the phonological study of modern Korean period(from 17th century through 19th century). Some of them have not even been discussed yet. Thus, this paper aims to examine and even solve the problems we face in the studies on periodization, the characteristics of Korean historical materials, the correlation between phonological changes and writing, sound changes and phonological changes, the process and pattern of phonological changes, and restructuring of morphemes etc.. The study of phonological history of modern Korean inevitably has some limits in its achievements, because it tries to rebuild the spoken Korean through the written materials. However, the documents written in modern Korean, Hangeul, the Korean writing system, provide us with good materials for the study of phonological history of Modern Korean. It is because the writing in these documents not only keeps stable correspondence between letters and sounds, with various forms, but also it is free from artificial rules of orthography. The study of phonology of Modern Korean, however, has not produced satisfactory achievements. The reason is because their study of phonological changes, based on neo-grammarians' 'hypothesis of regularity with no exception,' has focused mainly on the beginning and ending periods of those changes, and as a result it has paid little attention to the real process of the changes. As Wang(1960)'s 'lexical diffusion' and Kiparsky(1995)'s 'lexical analogy' suggest, the written documents clearly prove that the factors of time and process are important.' In study of phonological changes, therefore, we should pay much more consideration to the process of the changes and the characteristics of each stage. To clarify the process of the phonological changes, we need to use the method of quantitative study which focuses on the frequency of each example, as well as the existing method which focuses on the relations of phonemes and their qualitative changes. It will give us an objective picture of the process of phonological changes in Modern Korean, through assorting the patterns of change. If we can explain the mechanism of change in each pattern which reflects the process of various changes, we will be able to contribute to illuminating the generality and particularity of phonological changes in Modern Korean.