Adverb Markers: Time

Today, we'll learn the markers that can be used to talk about time.

에 for specific time

에 is used when you want to specify a time.

우리 내일 여섯 시에 볼까?
How about meeting at 6 tomorrow?

그 사람 방금 전에 갔는데요?
He left just a moment ago.

Don't use 에 for some words

However, you should not use 에 with some words like 이제(from now on), 방금(just a moment), 지금(now), 곧(soon), 아까(not long ago), 어제(yesterday), 오늘(today), 내일(tomorrow), 언제(when), etc.

이제 시작합니다.
It starts now.

방금 한국에 도착했어요. 어디세요?
I just arrived at Korea. Where are you now?

그때 and 날

With 그때(at that moment, at that time), 날(day), you can choose to use 에 or not.

그때(에) 우리는 쓰레기를 줍고 있었다.
At that time, we were picking up some garbage.

다음 날(에) 그 아이들은 시험을 봤다.
In the next day, that kids took the test.

에 and 부터 for starting point

When we do something, there's a starting point. If you want to emphasize that point, you should use "부터". In this case, you can use 에 and 부터 interchangeably.

그 영화는 올해 4월{에/부터} 개봉합니다.
That movie will release on April this year.

내일 수업은 11시{에/부터} 시작합니다.
The class tomorrow starts from 11.

When you cannot use 에 for starting point.

If you want to add other markers after 부터, you cannot use 에.

내일 방송은 10시에니까 참고하세요. (x)
내일 방송은 10시부터니까 참고하세요. (o)
I'll do the show from 10 tomorrow. Don't forget.

서비스 시작이 내일에라고 들었는데, 맞아요? (x)
서비스 시작이 내일부터라고 들었는데, 맞아요? (o)
I heard that the start of the service was from tomorrow. Right?

When 에 and 부터 are different

In some cases, 에 and 부터 can be really different.

어젯밤에 영화를 봤어요.
어젯밤부터 영화를 봤어요.

어젯밤에 영화를 봤어요 means you watched a movie last night. Usually, you watched one or two and stopped and slept.

어젯밤부터 영화를 봤어요 means you continue to watch movies. If you told this sentence in the morning, you watched movie from last night to morning without any sleep.


내일 오후에 눈이 온대요.
내일 오후부터 눈이 온대요.

내일 오후에 눈이 온대요 means it will snow tomorrow afternoon. And you cannot be sure when, but you know it'll stop that day.

내일 오후부터 눈이 온대요 means it will continue to snow from tomorrow afternoon. Yes, it can stop that day, but it can also mean it'll snow for days.

This thing happens when you use 에 and 부터 with words like 보다, 공부하다, 먹다, 내리다, etc. These verbs don't have the meaning of start or change.