After our little venture into four character idioms (사자성어), it is time to return to good old, regular proverbs, idioms and expressions. These regular ones are a bit easier to grasp and use than those four character idioms which requires you to be knowledgeable of a bit of Chinese history. Anyway this article’s proverb is: 공든 탑이 무너지랴.
“공든 탑이 무너지랴” is a hopeful expression that you can use. The meaning of this proverb is that tough work will always go rewarded. So it is the Korean equivalent of the English expression: “All efforts will pay dividends”. However, you do not use this expression like how the English you would use the version.
This Korean proverb is more of a rhetorical question the person who has put a lot of effort into something wonders loudly whether all his efforts won’t go to waste. In general listeners will say that, of course, his efforts are not wasted. He will soon reap the benefits of his effort. It is a bit a roundabout way of getting the same effect as the English proverb.
Unlike the expressions we have seen so far, this idiom is pretty much a complete sentence on its own.
Have you seen this expression before? Or perhaps you’ve used it in a text you’ve written yourself! Please share your experience in the comments. When you see expressions used by others, they become easier to understand.