If you have ever known or met a Vietnamese person, there is a 40% chance their last name is Nguyễn (pronounced “wing”). People in Vietnam tended to take the family name of emperors to show their loyalty. The other two popular last names are Trần, and Lê. Over so many generations, these family names became permanent. Because of this frequency, the people are often referred to by their middle name and given name to tell one another apart. This is a list of popular Vietnamese names you will hear from time to time, their origins, and how to pronounce them.
Female | Derived from Chinese 爱, meaning “love, affection.”| Pronounced eye.
Male and female | Derived from Chinese 安 meaning “peace, quiet.” | Pronounced un.
Female | Meaning “doll.” | Pronounced beh.
Male | Derived from Chinese 寶, meaning “protection, security.” | Pronounced bao.
Male | Derived from Chinese 勇, meaning “brave.”| Pronounced yung.
Male and female | Derived from Chinese 江, meaning “river.” | Pronounced yang.
Female | Vietamese name meaning “sunshine.” | Pronounced ha.
Male and female | Derived from Chinese 靈, meaning “spirit, soul.” | Pronounced lynn.
Male and female | Derived from Chinese 福, meaning “happiness, good fortune, blessing”| Pronounced phoop.
Male and female | Derived from Chinese 雲, meaning “cloud.”| Pronounced vun.
Male and female | Derived from Chinese 榮, meaning “glory.” | Pronounced vynn.