USEFUL WEBSITES for studying Vietnamese

Dictionary Project

Online Vietnamese to English, French and German dictionaries with comprehensive lists of vocabularies (Eng<->Viet). A wonderful thing about this dictionary is that you can hear most vocabularies with Hanoi pronunciation recorded by human, not by computer. You can also download this dictionary to use your computer but that's quite weak (with no sound files) and it's not as useful as the LacViet. This website also provides a pocket dictionary for use on PalmOS and PocketPC but I just couldn't run that on my Palm, don't know why.


Nom Foundation Hội Bảo tồn Di sản Nôm 會保存遺産喃

Nôm or Chữ Nôm was the ancient script of Vietnamese language, which were created based on Chinese characters, usually combine with a phonetic part and a semantic part (e.g. chận was written as [足陣] which means foot).. This website provides an impressive lookup tool (see picture) for searching Chữ Nôm, characters are displayed in GIF format so you don't need any special fonts. There're also some information about Chữ Nôm on their website.

Thiều Chửu Hán Hán-Việt tự điện 漢越字典 TC 1.5 Beta online

The online version of this dictionary is annoyingly difficult to use, it limits your search by radicals or stroke numbers only, though it has an option to let you download the dictionary for use on any Java platform, please check my "reference" section for more information. I give only 2 stars for their website but for the offline version. Note that this dictionary shares the same database with Tự điển HÁN VIỆT 線上漢越字典 (right pic).


A very useful resource for learning Vietnamese if you know Japanese already. Some jokes, historic and cultural notes, etc, all with translation (word-by-word) in Japanese. I found the CHAUさんのコーナー quite useful as it gives good explanation on some commonly used Vietnamese words. The website indicated some icons for downloading sound files (at the lyrics section) but all links are broken. Zannenda! At the bottom of the website are some lists of Chinese-Vietnamese characters and vocabularies (ベトナム語漢字対応表), which are also useful. But ask a Vietnamese to proof read the Vietnamese script for you, there're some minor mistakes (most are related to the tonal markers).

Chúng ta học tiếng Việt We learn Vietnamese

A radio programm offered by the Voice of Vietnam (nothing to do with the VOA), they have 38 lessons for learning Vietnamese using English as the medium of instructions. I've downloaded one only lesson and they're quite easy to follow, the sounds are clearly recorded but there're no written material of the dialog.

析「喃字」的民族性 , 聶檳

A short article about the history, development and analysis of Chữ Nôm (Vietnamese Chinese characters). This is just a very brief introduction of Chữ Nôm but I couldn't find other better explanation on the origin of Chữ Nôm on the internet. This article was written in Chinese but you can try the online machine translation here by Altavista though I'm quite sure you won't get much...

Vietnam Dictionaries on the Web

The explanation of the Anh<->Viet section is just too simple and no sound files are provided.

Viện Việt-Học Institute of Vietnamese Studies 院越學

This website looks quite promising in providing resources for studying ancient Vietnamese. You can download some passages in PDF format, but I think my Vietnamese level is still too low to comment on the content on this website.

SE Asian Languages and Cultures by Center for SEA Studies of Northern Illinois University

There're 20 lessons at beginner's level, each lesson has 3 to 4 conversations (all with audios, translations and vocabulary lists), a very generous contribution! But they don't have much explanation on grammar, which is the only drawback. The site also has some cultural information about Vietnam, they even have a simple cook book to teach you how to make spring rolls so you can be a real Vietnamese!


How to create Vietnamese Unicode documents

An article with some information about the creating documents in Vietnamese Unicode. You can also download fonts with Vietnamese diacritics here (Times New Roman, Arial , etc).

Omniglot: A Guide to Writing System

This website contains only 2 sections about Vietnamese writing system (Vietnamese script and Chữ Nôm) but the website has an impressive collection of the world's writing system, which is extremely interesting and insightful to read. I spent more time on this website than others (except, highly recommended.


Weblog, a good way to practice Vietnamese, or other languages.

Weblog is a web+log, or in simple words, it's an easy way to publish your diary on the internet. I use it to practice my Vietnamese too. Well... this is indeed just a suggestion, but I think a weblog is a good place to practice writing Vietnamese (or other languages). I have made one on, here's my Weblog (, I've tried my best to write at least 3 to 4 short articles every week on the weblog, it's a good way to learn new words (not just from newspaper or textbook), and it's easier for my Vietnamese friends to correct my spelling or grammar mistakes.

My weblog has 4 languages (Chinese, English, Japanese and Vietnamese), it's all about the trip of me and my little companion, Kong Jr.