Vietnamese is a fascinating, fun language. It’s the official language of Vietnam, but you can hear it being spoken in countries all across the world. In fact, about 90 million people on the globe speak Vietnamese! If you choose to learn this language, you’re in good company. Here are a few quick facts.
It’s all in the tone
Tone is very important when speaking Vietnamese – if you use the wrong tone, you could be saying a completely different word! Make sure you pay special attention to your pitch when learning this language.
The “diacritic,” or the little mark above vowels, denote which tone you’ll use. Here’s an example: cà phê (coffee). If you’re not familiar with these accents, it may take some getting used to. However, once you practice using them, writing and speaking the language with diacritics will feel natural.
A blend of influences
If you’re familiar with the Chinese language already (Mandarin or Cantonese), you may recognize some similarities when learning Vietnamese. To be specific, both languages use Chinese characters, or something similar.
You may not know that the Vietnamese language also has some influences from the French language, too. The alphabet is actually rooted in the French alphabet!
Three different accents
You might assume that with one language comes one accent. However, it’s generally accepted that there are three Vietnamese accents. These change depending on which part of the country the speaker is from. The accent from Hanoi, the capital of Vietnam, is regarded as the ‘standard’ Vietnamese accent.
Super fun to learn!
With lots of resources online and otherwise for beginners, this language is easier than ever to learn! Check out these delightful children’s books for a fun way to start the journey.