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Some French words are use in Vietnamese!!!

I just start learning French. I learned many words and found some French words that pronounce as same as Vietnamese words! And the special is their meanings is same too! I know because I am a Vietnamese. These are some words I found:

  • French: sac / Vietnamese: xắc (bag)

  • French: piston / Vietnamese: pít-tông (piston)

  • French: la chemise / Vietnamese: áo sơ-mi (shirt)

  • French: le fromage / Vietnamese: pho-mát, phô-mai (cheese)

  • French: le savon / Vietnamese: xà-phòng (soap)

  • And more....

Finnally, I wanna to ask you why is this happen??? I don't know what's happening. Please give me some answer.Thank you all.

January 19, 2018



Vietnam used to be part of what was known as French Indochina. France had colonies in Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos, so French became the language of government and commerce while the French controlled the region. The Vietnam war began after WWII when the area was liberated from the Japanese and the French tried to reassert control. The native Vietnamese people under Ho Chi Mihn began the fight against foreign rule and eventually defeated the French military forces at Dien Bien Phu in 1954. So even though the French have been out of Vietnam for a long time. The influence of the French language remains.


Why can you know this?


I have an interest in US military history, so I have read about the events related to the wars the US has been involved in. I failed to read your entire post, so I missed the fact that you are Vietnamese. Your knowledge of Vietnamese history is likely to be different from mine. The sources I have read have the viewpoints of Americans and Europeans, so I apologise if any of comments I made are incorrect.


All is correct. Those viewpoints pretty like to Vietnamese's viewpoints. I wanna to tell you about Vietnamese' teaching ways.Vietnamese history books always talk about their goods never talk about their bad. And one more, I read almost all Vietnamese history book and know that they never write anything about their failed battles. They only write 1 of them ( That is about An Duong Vuong King's story)


When I was a kid we had a world map that had French Indochina as a country.


because they can search


France colonised Laos, Vietnam, and Cambodia, so it's possible that some words are borrowed from French.

  • 1364

Wikipedia has an article "The French language in Vietnam": https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/French_language_in_Vietnam which includes a list of some French words in Vietnamese


. very good

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