USS Newport News CA-148 Naval Research - Tu Dien Viet Anh
"Thunder" USS Newport News CA-148 off North Vietnam October 1967 / image adapted from photo by John Glass  
 
USS Newport News CA-148 Research Pages
 
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USS Newport News CA-148 off North Vietnam
( image from photo by John Glass October 1967 )

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A Little Insight Into Vietnamese Place Names

There are some Vietnamese place names  -  Cua Viet,  Hon Mat,  Hon Me,  and others  -  that appear in various reports of USS Newport News CA-148 wartime action.  This page offers a very little bit of Vietnamese vocabulary and word order in hopes that the insight will add a little to shipmates' understanding of those records.

(I'm not qualified to teach the Vietnamese language to anyone.  I've failed at several attempts to learn Vietnamese and several other tonal Eastern languages.  I just don't hear or reproduce the tones with any accuracy.)





And here is a real  Vietnamese English dictionary :

Vietnamese English French Online Dictionary: Free online dictionary for Vietnamese-English-French translation. 

Word Order Vietnamese language puts the general object or noun before it's modifiers  (and it appears to me,  at least,  that the modifiers are of increasing specificity).
   
  For example,  the Vietnam Stamp Company goes by Cotevina or Cong Ty Tem Viet Nam.  That is literally Company (Cong Ty) Stamp (Tem) Vietnam (Viet Nam).
   
  Our hotel room in Nam Dinh had a yellow-pages-like business directory with more than half the entries in the "C's" because most of the names started with "Cong Ty" !
   
Place Names That word order means that many place names start with a general word for what kind of feature it is,  such as "song" for "river",  "cua" for "river mouth", or "hon" for "island". That general word is then followed by the specific place name.
   
Cua Viet Mouth of the Viet River
   
Hon Mat Mat Island
   
Hon Me Me Island
   
Mui Lay Cape Lay
   
Song Bang Bang River
   
Tonal Marks Tonal marks on vowels are omitted from most of this page,  except for the brief dictionary,  because they require special fonts.  That's actually a serious omission because different tones on a vowel can give a word as many a six different meanings  !

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