[122] -는/은 커녕 grammar

As usual, always useful to recoup the information from different sources, here, here and here.

Basically,

은/는 커녕 is used to say “There wasn’t X, let alone Y” or “Never mind Y, I didn’t even do X!” The noun or verb before the structure is attached to let alone or never mind, while  is used for emphasis in the second part.

Note that if X is a verb, you have to nounify with the 기 construct added to the verb stem.

For the example sentences, you have many in above links, but I’ll add a few from endic.naver.com as I’ve found myself to use this dictionary more and more to find out how words are used in context based on realistic native sentences.

그 녀석 불어는커녕 영어도 못한다: He knows no Englishto say nothing of French.

그는 죽기는 커녕 다치지도 않았다: He didnt die, he wasnt even wounded.

손님커녕 우리 쓸 공간도 충분치가 않다: There isn’t enough room for us, let alone any guests.

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