An Important recurring motif of the Korean early modern verses, Nim, is not only a poetic material but also an emotional structure reflecting the special historical situations and social experiences. This study aims to survey the development of Nim into an emotional structure and its backgrounds in terms of the establishment of the modern subject. The poems studied here are those that were written from the period of Enlightening Patriotism till the early 1920s. The poems of the period of Enlightening Patriotism have the distinctive features of excluding Nim purposely and putting in its place such ideas as independence, restoration of sovereignty and patriotic enthusiasm Nim is shown in the poems of the 1920s can be divided into three layers. First, Nim is a form of idea which reclarifies the undaunted will and optimistic vision towards enlighrening ideals, blocking up the agitation and despair of the subject. Second, there is a poetic trend in which Nim appears as an absent Nim Such poems chiefly deal with the anxiety and split of the self caused by the division and trouble between the world and the self. They play an important role in inquiring into the inner world of the modern self, but are exposed to sentimentalism. The failure of the 1919 Independence Movement amplified sentimentalism and disillusionment, and Nim became a literary shelter for self-pity. Third, Nim is an object of belief which makes it possible to face up to the oppressing social realities and endure the split self. Such type of Nim finally found itself the general emotion of the Koreans and remained as an important poetic ideal establishing the modern verses.