Vietnamese language

Vietnamese language called ‘’Tiếng Việt’’ in Vietnamese language also known as Vietnamese, is the official language in Vietnam. It is the mother tongue of about 85% of the Vietnamese population and four million Vietnamese people abroad. Vietnamese is also the second language of ethnic minorities in Vietnam. Although Vietnamese has a number of words borrowed from the Chinese language and has already used Nôm scripts or Sino-Vietnamese in Chinese characters, the Vietnamese language is considered one of the most spoken languages in south of Asia. Today, the Vietnamese language uses the Latin alphabet, called Quốc Ngữ, and accents to write.

Vietnamese language

The history of the Vietnamese language:

Vietnamese language is a native language derived from the civilization of agriculture created in north of the Red River Delta and the Ma River in northern Vietnam.

According to the explanation of the linguist A. G. Haudricourt in 1954, the Vietnamese language belonging to the group of the Vietnamese-muong language at the beginning of the Christian era had no tone. Later, through the process of interaction with the Chinese language and especially with the Tai-Kadai language having a highly developed tonal system, the tonal system of the Vietnamese language appeared as today, according to the rules of the tone formation. The tone began around the 6th century, the period of Chinese domination in the history of Vietnam, with three tones to have six tones around the 12th century, under the Ly dynasty. The six tones or accents are one of the most peculiarities of the current Vietnamese language.

Foreign influences:

Influences of the Han people from China: Vietnamese language has been used in the communication activities of its people since the founding of the country. There are 6 main tones or 6 accents. At the beginning of the Christian era, Vietnamese did not yet have Chinese influence of the Han people. From the moment where China influenced Vietnam through many different ways and phases, the Vietnamese began to take the ancient Chinese words that were assimilated very strongly. So, these Chinese - Vietnamese or Sino - Vietnamese words or Tiếng Hán in Vietnamese are pronounced according to Vietnamese phonetic regulations to become the natural elements of the actual Vietnamese language.

According to the researchers' estimate, the Sino-Vietnamese words represent about 70% of the vocabulary of the Vietnamese language, concentrated in the style of political dissertation and science. But this presence represents about 12% in the literature, 9% in the theater and very limited in the spoken language of everyday life.

In any case, most of these Sino-Vietnamese words have been ‘’Vietnamized’’ according to the perception of the Vietnamese people. There are many words of Chinese origin, but the Chinese do not use them at all. Thus, the Vietnamese people use these Chinese words but kept their own identity in the face of the influence of the Han culture, while taking advantage of the linguistic achievements of the Han language to improve Vietnamese language.

Since the beginning of the 11th century, Confucianism has developed. Han language education and the number of intellectuals developed to create the prosperity of Vietnamese literature written in the Han language. At the same time, a writing system was created specifically for the Vietnamese people. It is the Sino - Vietnamese language. The Vietnamese written in Sino-Vietnamese words during later periods was basically very close to the Vietnamese language of today.

Influences from the Europe: Since France invaded Vietnam in the second half of the 19th century, French language has gradually replaced the position of the Sino-Vietnamese and Chinese language in education, administration and diplomacy. The Vietnamese language alphabetized from the Latin language called Quốc Ngữ - National Language - was created in 16th century by some European missionaries, especially two Portuguese missionaries Gaspar De Amaral and Antonio Barbosa in order to list evangelized sites in Vietnam. Gia Định Báo, the first newspaper published in the National Language in 1865, confirmed the development and trend of the Vietnamese language later. Since the middle of the 20th century until now, the Vietnamese language has the influences of the English with the Vietnam War and when the country integrated strongly into the whole world.

Particularities of the grammar of the Vietnamese language:

Vietnamese language is tonal. All the syllables of Vietnamese always carry a certain tone indicated by the accent. There is a difference of tones between the different regions of Vietnam in the spoken language. En reality, these changes between the North and the South are not immediate but goes gradually through the center. There are three main accents: in the north, it is the accent of Hanoi; in the center, this is Hue's accent; in the south, this is the accent of Saigon or Ho Chi Minh City. But, there is no official document to decide these main accents of the Vietnamese language.

Like many other languages ​​in Southeast Asia, Vietnamese language is an isolating and mono-syllabic language. Grammatical relationships are expressed mainly through word - tool systems and the position of words in sentences. The most commonly used word order in the Vietnamese language is the subject - predicate - auxiliary.

The position of words is arranged in order: The first word has the main meaning; the second word has the auxiliary meaning to complete the meaning of the main word. So, the noun is followed by the adjective to complete the nominal meaning...

Vietnamese language also has a system of very complex personal pronouns based on terms which designate relationships, kinship ties...

The vocabulary of the Vietnamese language:

The vocabulary of the Vietnamese language is divided into two parts: purely Vietnamese words and borrowed words. In addition, there are also mixed words that are the result of mixing Vietnamese and foreign elements.

Purely Vietnamese vocabulary: These are the words that have appeared for a long time in the Vietnamese language to express the most basic things, phenomena and definitions.

Original vocabulary of the language of the Han people in China or Sino-Vietnamese: The contact between the Vietnamese people and the Chinese people began when the Han from Chine invaded Vietnam. This contact has incorporated many words of the Han language into the Vietnamese language. The Sino-Vietnamese language plays a big role in the vocabulary of Vietnamese and is present in all aspects of social life. By becoming the inseparable element, the original words of the Han language have changed phonetics and many words have even changed meaning. In general, the Vietnamese people are aware of the clarity of the Vietnamese language. So the use of Sino-Vietnamese is selective. There is a tendency to replace the Sino-Vietnamese words by the purely Vietnamese words when possible.

Words of European origin: Since Vietnam became a French colony, French language had a considerable influence on the Vietnamese language. French language has been used in official government documents and in teaching, as well as in books... This influence has caused the appearance of many French words in various fields, notably in science and technology.

During the Vietnam War in the 20th century, Vietnam was greatly influenced by the Soviet Union and the United States. As a result, some terms of the Russian language and English were introduced in Vietnam. Now, with the contact, the integration of Vietnam into the world, several English words also appear in the Vietnamese language but changing phonetics.

The writing of the Vietnamese language:

At present, the Vietnamese language uses the Latin alphabet called Quốc Ngữ - National Language. According to the first Portuguese missionaries, the National Language developed in the 16th century and was marked by the work '' Dictionarium Annamiticum Lusitanum and Latinum '' published in 1651 by the French missionary named Alexandre de Rhodes in 1651.

After the invasion of the French people in the middle of the 19th century, the National Language has become predominant and almost all written texts have used it since the 1920s. Before, the Vietnamese people used two types of writing: Chinese and Sino-Vietnamese writing which have lost the position as a tool for transmitting literary ideas. Today, these scriptures are no longer prevalent in the Vietnamese language.