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Vietnamese Translation
The words "cũng" and "đều" stand after the subject and before a verb or adjective to express the unity of the action or characteristic.

"Cũng" shows that something has the same quality or performs the same action as another subject, like "also" or "too" in English. For example: "Linh nói tiếng Việt. Tôi cũng nói tiếng Việt." ("Linh speaks Vietnamese. I also speak Vietnamese."

"Đều" is used after a plural subject to show that every member of the subject shares the action or characteristic described by the verb or adjective, like "all" in English. For example: "Bạn cũng nói tiếng Việt à? Thế thì chúng ta đều nói tiếng Việt." (You also speak Vietnamese? Then we all speak Vietnamese."
8th-Nov-2009 02:08 pm - Grammar Lesson: Classifier "con"
Vietnamese uses words called classifiers (loại từ) with most nouns to differentiate them. The classifier "cái" is used with things and "con" is used with animals. However, "con" is also used with certain "animal-like things" which are exceptions to the rule. These exceptions just need to be learned by heart and include the following words:

con dường: road
con dao: knife
con sông: river
con đê: dyke
con thuyền: boat
con tàu: ship
con mắt: eye
con ngươi: pupil (in the center of the eye)
con bài: playing card
con cù: top (spinning toy)
con quay: another word for "con cù"
con cúi: a roll of cotton
con giống: little toy animals
con lắc: pendulum
con nước: tide
con rối: puppet
con số: a number or numeral
con tính: a mathematical problem
con khăng: the "cat" in a game of tip-cat
con lăn: roller

I'm not sure why most of these things are considered "animal-like" (the puppets and toy animals are obvious), but I guess it's similar to how ships are referred to as "she" in English.
14th-Oct-2009 02:31 pm(no subject)
Allergies in Vietnam!

My friend and I are traveling to Vietnam and she is deathly allergic to shellfish but we don't have it written in Vietnamese yet.

Could someone please help?

Something like...:

It is important that there is nothing made from or uses shellfish in the food I eat. No shellfish bases in the sauce or any shellfish products. I am highly allergic to shellfish and eating it could have a reaction that would send me to the hospital.

Thank you so much in advance!
11th-Oct-2009 03:28 pm - Grammar Lesson: “ạ” particle
The “ạ” particle is used at the end of a sentence. It is usually used with older people or those who are in a higher social position. It's like "with all due respect" wrapped up in one little syllable.
30th-Sep-2009 12:03 am - Grammar Lesson: Plurals
Vietnamese grammar lesson: plurals

Vietnamese has several ways of indicating plurals. The two most common are the indefinite plurals: “các” and “những”. They are both used before the noun.

“Các” indicates that there is more than one of a thing. For example, “book” is “sách”. The word “books” would be “các sách” in the sentence “I have books in my house.”
“Những” indicates more than one but less than all. This word is used to refer to one group of things which are part of a larger group. For example, the word “books” would be “những sách” in the sentence “I have read the books on the shelf but I haven’t read the books on the table yet”.

Another way to refer to plurals is to simply use the number of items: “two books” would simply be “hai sách” or “2 sách”. Instead of a number, a word that indicates a less specific amount can be used, such as the following:
(Một) vài sách: some books, a few (roughly 2 or 3) books
Nhiều sách: many books
Một số sách: a number of books
Mấy sách: several (less than 10) books
(Số) ít sách: few books, a small number of books

The word “những” can also be combined with a specific number to indicate that the number is large. In this way, it is like the opposite of “chỉ” (“only”) used to indicate that a number is small. For example:
“20 đô” is “twenty dollars”.
“chỉ 20 đô” is “only twenty dollars” meaning “20 dollars is cheap”.
“những 20 đô” is “twenty dollars” meaning “20 dollars is expensive”.
28th-Sep-2009 12:12 am - Grammar Lesson: Basic Pronouns
To add a bit of useful material to this community, I'm going to try making regular posts of grammar and language points. This is the first of what I hope will be many more.

Basic personal pronouns:
Ông: "Grandfather", used for men over 50.
Bà: "Grandmother", used for women over 45 (women get married and have kids at a younger age).
Anh: "Big Brother", used for young men.
Chị: "Big Sister", used for young women.
Cô: "Aunt/Girl", used for young girls. Can also be used for young women, but it's kind of formal. Also used for female teachers.
Tớ: Used to refer to yourself when you are talking to a close friend of the same age.
Cậu: Used to refer to a close friend of the same age.
Cụ: "Great-grandparent", used for very old people (around 70-80 and up)
Cháu: "Grandchild/niece/nephew", used for young people talking to old people (if the older one is addressed as aunt/uncle/grandparent/etc. then the younger one is cháu).
Em: "Younger sibling/child", used for people who are younger but not young enough to be your children. Also used to refer to students when they speak to their teachers.
Thầy (Thày): "master/teacher", used to refer to male teachers and monks.
ấy: "that", added after a pronoun to make it third person. It can't be used with pronouns that are exclusively first person, such as "tôi" and "tớ".
29th-Aug-2009 12:47 pm(no subject)

I know it's better suited to post this to vietnamese, but it seems that vietnamese is quite dead. And maybe you'll be interested from purely linguistic reasons:
I maintain a webpage for an organization of Vietnamese immigrants to Poland. We post there news about Vietnamese diaspora in the world and about the current political events in Vietnam. The page is in Polish and Vietnamese but maybe some of you who know Vietnamese well enough would be interested in our articles :)

The webpage address: http://wietnam.org.pl

If you think it's inappropriate and spam, I'll remove this entry.
21st-Aug-2009 02:17 pm - Old words like "Thou"
In English we have many archaic words that are no longer used in everyday but everyone still recognizes them from period dramas, poetry, and fantasy fiction. Words such as "thou" and "thee". Vietnamese also has forms of address that are no longer used in everyday speech but are still used in movies and stories set in the past. These are Hán words (of Chinese origin) and are very common in translations (dubbed or subtitled) of Chinese kung fu movies set earlier than the 20th century. Even the movie "Kung Fu Panda" which was originally in English is translated using these words to add an authentic aura. These words also show up in any movie featuring people talking to a monarch, whether it's King Leonidas in "300" or Queen Victoria in "From Hell" or Princess Leia in "Star Wars". ("Star Wars" is awesome in Vietnamese. I should do a post about that sometime.)

Thần: Equivalent to "your humble servant", this word is used to refer to oneself when speaking to royalty.
Khanh: This is the word that royalty uses when speaking to someone they particularly favor. The dictionaries usually define it as "our favorite subject". I've seen it used by kings speaking to generals and high-ranking mandarins or when speaking to their queens or concubines (who aren't called "em").
Thiếp: When used as a normal noun, this means "concubine" or "female servant". It's also used in the first person by women speaking to royalty. The queen uses this term for herself instead of "em" when she talks to the king.
Ta: People still use this word today to mean "we" when they are talking about a group that they are a part of. Royalty use this word in the first person when they speak to other people, just like the "royal we" in English.
Huynh: This is the old-fashioned equivalent of "Anh".
Tỷ: This is the old-fashioned equivalent of "Chị".
Đệ: This is the old-fashioned equivalent of "Em trai".
Muội: This is the old-fashioned equivalent of "Em gái".
When used with blood relatives, those last four forms of address are often preceded by "bào".
30th-Jul-2009 10:50 pm - Odd word
Here's an odd word I encountered today.

(cái) thóp: the soft spot on the top of a newborn baby's head.
29th-Jun-2009 07:46 pm - Joking/Teasing/Just Playing
I was wondering if someone could help me spell the word with the collective meaning of: joking, teasing, or playing around.  Is it spelled with a "G", like so: gion? Or am I completely off?  I have tried looking it up but to no avail...nothing.  Thank you!
9th-May-2009 05:02 pm(no subject)
The traditional ways to say goodbye in Vietnamese are "hẹn gặp lại" ("plan to meet again"), "tạm biệt" (literally "temporary separation"), or very rarely "vĩnh biệt" (goodbye forever, literally "permanent separation"). These are now considered to be a little formal among young urban Vietnamese, who now say "mai gặp" ("meet tomorrow") which is roughly equivalent to saying "see you later" or just "later" in English.
15th-Mar-2009 04:29 pm - Translation help!
Soviet Airman
What does "Đit cú chúng" mean? It was scribbled on a wall.
11th-Mar-2009 08:07 pm - :D help?
hey can someone please tell me what Lý Quạ Kêu means.
Like especially the word "Lý".
I see it alot in like Ly Con Ngua O^ and a bunch of other songs. idk. thanks in advace.
28th-Feb-2009 02:29 pm - AC&M Translation ?
Hey everyone. I was wondering if someone could help me translate this song from AC&M.

It's not a very long song, but my Vietnamese skills are very poor and I can barely make out stuff from the online automatic translations.

The link to the lyrics and the song is here

And here is the lyrics in case you would rather not click the link.

Tôi chết trong em bao giờ
Mỗi sớm sương bay thành phố mơ
Nỗi nhớ lang thang chiều mùa đông
Mùa đông dài đến vạn ngày.

Đong mãi cơn đau tôi dài
Mưa gió đi ngang vùng mắt ai
Tôi vẫn say như ngày em xa
Cạn mưa rồi đến ngày tàn.

Như khói bay vòng những chiều nắng phai
Mùa thu xếp áo gió cuốn then cài
Mưa nắng 2 mùa 2 mùa nhớ quên
Em đã xa xôi những muôn trùng mây.

Bên núi bên đồi ôi thành phố sương
Lời ca rũ lá mưa xóa mưa nhoà
Mưa xóa mưa nhoà trăng vàng cút côi
Em đã mây trôi những muôn trùng xa.

Biển khơi phía sau người không ngoái lại
Chỉ có sương chan hòa ban mai
Tôi đi tìm đời tôi những chuyến xe
Đi cho trọn trời đất xót xa.


22nd-Sep-2008 12:52 am - Another song: House of the Rising Sun
There is a house in New Orleans
They call the Rising Sun
It's been the ruin of many a poor boy
And God I know I'm one

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