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Post Reply Do Vietnamese learn how to write their names in Chinese characters?
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Posted 4/19/13 , edited 4/19/13
I'm only asking because Vietnam is part of the Sinosphere culture, and I understand Vietnamese language is its own language and the modern writing system is influenced by the French language. But unlike Koreans and Japanese who adapted Chinese characters into their languages, and even have Kanji/Hanja names on their identification documents, I've never seen a Vietnamese person write their names in Chinese, and was just wondering if Vietnamese people learn to write their names in Chinese characters (since many originated from China)?


For example, the surname 林 (which is my surname), is written the same in Chinese character but has many versions of spelling in English depending on the dialects/languages, such as Lam (Cantonese), Lâm (Viet), Lin/Lim (Mandarin), Im (Korean) or Hayashi (Japanese). I just wonder in this case, would Vietnamese learn how to write their surnames Lâm in Chinese characters like the rest of us?


Curious thought




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Posted 4/19/13



Does this help? If not I could ask my Vietnamese mother-in-law when I see her...

http://www.cjvlang.com/Writing/writviet.html
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43 / M / Reno, NV, USA
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Posted 4/19/13
From talking to a Vietnamese friend, the Vietnamese did indeed use Chinese characters until somewhat recently, but now pretty much use their own writing system exclusively. The situation may be similar to Koreans; per my wife (who's from Seoul), even though Koreans had their own native-born writing system (Hangul) which is centuries-old, they also used Chinese characters until somewhat recently. My father-in-law can read Chinese characters pretty well, but my wife and her generation were apparently only taught the fundamentals of Chinese characters while in school, and nowadays, it seems Koreans really don't use Chinese characters for much of anything in everyday life, doing everything instead in their own Hangul. She does know how to write her own name in Chinese characters, though.
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23 / M / Seattle
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Posted 4/19/13
We used to, but we switched to alphabets when the French colonized us, I believe.
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33 / F / Manila, PH
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Posted 7/28/13
Will you also need to learn basic Chinese characters when studying the Vietnamese language? Or is it really no longer needed/?
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14 / M / Canada! ^-^
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Posted 9/23/13
Chu Nom isn't really used much, you can see it a lot during festivals in Vietnam though.
I don't think you need to learn the Chinese characters but I'm pretty sure they will be helpful.

Besides, people will think you're badass if you can write with Chinese characters.
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