How to Say ‘Stupid’ in Korean

Last Updated on November 26, 2021 by 90 Day Korean
A woman in long sleeves touching her forehead with her right hand

Everyone feels a bit stupid sometimes. Or, maybe you notice something stupid, and want to express your feelings.

In this lesson we will look at how to say ‘stupid’ in Korean. Hopefully you won’t need to say this too often, but it is useful to know anyway!

A woman in long sleeves touching her forehead with her right hand

There are two main ways to say ‘stupid’ in Korean. One is based on a noun, and the other on an adjective.

We will tackle both in this lesson. Let’s get to it!

‘Stupid’ in Korean

To be stupid

The adjective for ‘stupid’ is 멍청하다 (meongcheonghada). This is used when making sentences such as ‘that is really stupid’.

Formal ‘Stupid’ in Korean

1. 멍청합니다 (meongcheonghamnida)How to Say Stupid in Korean formal

2. 바보입니다 (baboimnida)

It is unlikely that you will want to use these words in formal situations such as job interviews or presentations. However, if you do, you can use the above forms of the words.


그의 형은 똑똑한데 반해 그는 멍청합니다

(geuui hyeongeun ttokttokande banhae geuneun meongcheonghamnida)

In contrast to his smart brother, he is stupid.

바보처럼 보이고 싶지 않습니다 (babocheoreom boigo sipji anseumnida)

I don’t want to look stupid.

Standard ‘Stupid’ in Korean

1. 멍청해요 (meongcheonghaeyo)How to Say Stupid in Korean standard

2. 바보예요 (baboyeyo)

You can use these expressions when talking to people who are older or not particularly close to you. Remember that it isn’t nice to call somebody stupid so be careful when using these words!


두 친구 중 하나는 매우 멍청해요. (du chingu jung hananeun maeu meongcheonghaeyo)

Out of the two friends, one is very stupid.

아무 여자나 믿는 남자는 바보예요 (amu yeojana minneun namjaneun baboyeyo)

A man is stupid to trust any woman.

Informal ‘Stupid’ in Korean

1. 멍청해 (meongcheonghae)

2. 바보야 (baboya)How to Say Stupid in Korean informal

You can use these expressions with people who are close to you and who are of a similar or younger age.


어떻게 그런 바보 같은 짓을 했을까? (eotteoke geureon babo gateun jiseul haesseulkka?)

How could I have been so stupid?

너 바보야? (neo baboya?)

Are you stupid?

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Bonus: A Stupid PersonHow to Say Stupid in Korean Bonus

To use stupid in this form, you can change 멍청하다 (meongcheonghada) to 멍청한 (meongcheonghan).


멍청한 사람 (meongcheonghan saram)

Stupid person

멍청한 남자 (meongcheonghan namja)

Stupid man

멍청한 것 (meongcheonghan geot)

Stupid thing

바보 (babo)

Another word that is often used in this situation is the noun 바보 (babo).

You can use this word if you want to call somebody stupid.

We will now look at some examples to see how you can use 멍청하다 (meongcheonghada) and 바보 (babo) in different situations.

A Word of Caution About Romanization

The words in this article have been romanized in order to make this article more accessible. But if you really want to learn Korean, the first step is to learn the Korean alphabet, which is called Hangul. It is easy to learn, and will help you improve your understanding of Korean in many different ways, saving you time and effort later on.

For more phrases that you can use every day, read this article. If you want to take your language learning to the next level, why not sign up for our full Korean course?

Now that you know how to say ‘stupid’ in Korean, you can hopefully express yourself more. Let us know when you feel stupid, and what you can do to help others who feel stupid. By knowing more Korean, we can all help each other become more confident!

Want more Korean phrases? Go to our Korean Phrases Page for a complete list!

    4 replies to "How to Say ‘Stupid’ in Korean"

    • Avatar for 아린 아린

      How do I say “you’re silly” like in a joking and friendly way?
      Is “유치해” or “어리석은” can be used? I don’t understand how to use these words.

      • Avatar for 90 Day Korean 90 Day Korean

        Hi, 아린! ‘유치해’ is okay. ‘유치하다’ means ‘childish’. ^^

    • Avatar for LeAnna Zeller LeAnna Zeller

      So I’m trying to figure out how to call my sister stupid(in a joking way don’t worry)……I have heard the phrase 지민이 바보 but I don’t know how to apply that to my sisters name because it ends with a vowel unlike Jimin’s name.( if that applies to this) I would really appreciate a helping hand in this…..thank you

      • Avatar for 90 Day Korean 90 Day Korean

        Hi LeAnna!
        You can just say “her name 바보”. For example, 애나(Anna) 바보 (no offense)^^

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