… be continued for section 2:
The consonants that occur in Vietnamese are listed below in the Vietnamese orthography with the phonetic pronunciation to the right.
Some consonant sounds are written with only one letter (like “p”), other consonant sounds are written with a two-letter disgrah (like “ph”), and others are written with more than one letter or digraph (the velar stop is written variously as “c”, “k”, or “q”).
The tables below show detail and it may help you easier to understand.
Vietnamese single consonants
There are 17 single consonants as listed below:
Vietnamese consonants clusters
There are 11 consonants clusters:
Vietnamese final consonants
There are 8 final consonants:
Difference between two sounds – K & Kh, Ng & Ngh
It is necessray to make a difference between these two sounds:
K vs. Kh
“K” & “kh” are two of the consonant symbols in the Vietnamese language. “K” is produced fortis and unaspirated. It is similar to the “c” in cat. In Vietnamese language it is similar to “c” and “q”. Perhaps one of the most common words beginning with “k” is “kem” which means “ice cream” and “kẹo” which means “candy”. “Kh” is produced lenis voiceless dorsorelar spirant. The most common ‘kh’ word is “không” which means “no” or “not” though there are less common meanings as well. “Khỏe” which means “strong” and “healthy” is another common word. To place “khỏe không” after a personal referent is to enquire as to another’s health – literally: “you well no?” as in “bạn khỏe không?” Also in these times of fast food, the ubiquitous french fry is known as “khoai tây chiên” meaning “potato fry”.
Ng and Ngh
The sound that ng and ngh make in Vietnamese is by far the hardest sound for Westerners to make. Ng and ngh simply make the last sound in “king” or “running” (as long as you don’t make the hard /g/ sound at the end). The problem arises when ng or ngh come at the beginning of a word, as the common family name Nguyễn clearly demonstrates. Here, the speaker has to isolate the /ŋ/ sound, which even many Western dictionaries don’t recognize in their pronunciation guides. (Those that do tend to represent it as /ng/.) This lesson will help you to at least pronounce the /ŋ/ sound well enough for a native listener.
One thing you have to take a notice of is the combination of these above consonants Ng/ ngh with vowels. See below for detail:
Difference between Ng and Ngh (Source: coviet.vn)
Ngh can only combine with the vowels which are started with i, e, ê.
Ng can combine with vowels started with a, o, ơ, ô, u, ư.
Besides, Vietnamese has another pair of sound (g/ gh) which are all pronouned as /g/, for these consonants, there is also rule in combining with vowels.
– gh can only combine with vowel started with e, ê, i.
– g can go with vowel started with a, o, ơ, ô, u, ư.
* g can also go with i but in this case it will be pronoun as /j/, e.g. cái gì.
… continue in section 4 …
◊ VIETNAMESE LANGUAGE for Vietnamese and Foreigners – Introduction – Section 1
◊ VIETNAMESE LANGUAGE for Vietnamese and Foreigners – Vietnamese Alphabet – Section 2
◊ VIETNAMESE LANGUAGE for Vietnamese and Foreigners – Vietnamese Tones – Section 4
◊ VIETNAMESE LANGUAGE for Vietnamese and Foreigners – Vietnamese Dialogue: Greeting – Section 5
BAN TU THU
◊ Header image – Source: Student Vietnam Exchange.
◊ Indexes, bold text, italic text in bracket and sepia image has been set by Ban Tu Thu – thanhdiavietnamhoc.com