5 chục

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Historically Vietnamese has two sets of numbers: one is etymologically native Vietnamese; the other uses Sino-Vietnamese vocabulary. In the modern language the native Vietnamese vocabulary is used for both everyday counting and mathematical purposes. The Sino-Vietnamese vocabulary is used only in fixed expressions or in Sino-Vietnamese words, in a similar way that Latin and Greek numerals are used in modern English (e.g., the bi- prefix in bicycle).

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For numbers up lớn one million, native Vietnamese terms is often used the most, whilst mixed Sino-Vietnamese origin words and native Vietnamese words are used for units of one million or above.


For non-official purposes prior lớn the 20th century, Vietnamese had a writing system known as Hán-Nôm. Sino-Vietnamese numbers were written in chữ Hán and native vocabulary was written in chữ Nôm. Hence, there are two concurrent system in Vietnamese nowadays in the romanized script, one for native Vietnamese and one for Sino-Vietnamese.

In the modern Vietnamese writing system, numbers are written as Arabic numerals or in the romanized script chữ Quốc ngữ (một, nhị, ba), which had a chữ Nôm character. Less common for numbers under one million are the numbers of Sino-Vietnamese origin (nhất [1], nhị [2], tam [3]), using chữ Hán (Chinese characters). Chữ Hán and chữ Nôm has all but become obsolete in the Vietnamese language, with the Latin-style of reading, writing, and pronouncing native Vietnamese and Sino-Vietnamese being wide spread instead, when France occupied Vietnam. Chữ Hán can still be seen in traditional temples or traditional literature or in cultural artefacts. The Hán-Nôm Institute resides in Hanoi, Vietnam.

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Basic figures[edit]

The following table is an overview of the basic Vietnamese numeric figures, provided in both native and Sino-Vietnamese counting systems. The khuông that is highlighted in green is the most widely used in all purposes whilst the ones highlighted in xanh rờn are seen as archaic but may still be in use. There are slight differences between the Hanoi and Saigon dialects of Vietnamese, readings between each are differentiated below.

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Number Native Vietnamese Sino-Vietnamese Notes
chữ quốc ngữ chữ Nôm chữ Quốc ngữ chữ Hán
0 không linh 空 • 〇(零) The foreign-language borrowed word "zêrô (zêro, dê-rô)" is often used in physics-related publications, or colloquially.
1 một 𠬠 nhất 一(壹)
2 hai 𠄩 nhị 二(貳)
3 ba 𠀧 tam 三(叄)
4 bốn 𦊚 tứ 四(肆) In the ordinal number system, the Sino-Vietnamese "tư/四" is more systematic; as the digit 4 appears after the number trăng tròn when counting upwards, the Sino-Vietnamese "tư/四" is more commonly used.
5 năm 𠄼 ngũ 五(伍) In numbers above ten that over in five (such as 115, 25, 1055), five is alternatively pronounced as "lăm/𠄻" lớn avoid possible confusion with "năm/𢆥", a homonym of năm, meaning "year". Exceptions lớn this rule are numbers ending in 05 (such as 605, 9405).
6 sáu 𦒹 lục 六(陸)
7 bảy 𦉱 thất 七(柒) In some Vietnamese dialects, it is also read as "bẩy".
8 tám 𠔭 bát 八(捌)
9 chín 𠃩 cửu 九(玖)
10 mười • một chục 𨒒 thập (拾) Chục is used colloquially. "Ten eggs" may be called một chục ngược trứng rather than thở mười ngược trứng. It's also used in compounds lượt thích mươi instead of chục (e.g.: hai mươi/chục "twenty").
100 trăm • một trăm 𤾓 • 𠬠𤾓 bách (bá) (佰) The Sino-Vietnamese "bách/百" is commonly used as a morpheme (in compound words), and is rarely used in the field of mathematics as a digit. Example: "bách phân phát bách trúng/百發百中".
1,000 nghìn (ngàn) • một ngàn (ngàn) 𠦳 • 𠬠𠦳 thiên (仟) The Sino-Vietnamese "thiên/千" is commonly used as a morpheme, but rarely used in a mathematical sense, however only in counting bricks, it is used. Example: "thiên kim/千金". "nghìn" is the standard word in Northern Vietnam, whilst "ngàn" is the word used in the South.
10,000 mười ngàn (ngàn) 𨒒𠦳 vạn • một vạn • 𠬠萬 The "một/𠬠" within "một vạn/𠬠萬" is a native Vietnamese (intrinsic term) morpheme. This was officially used in Vietnamese in the past, however, this unit has become less common after 1945, but in counting bricks, it is still widely used. The borrowed native pronunciation muôn for 萬 is still used in slogans such as "muôn năm" (ten thousand years/endless).
100,000 trăm ngàn (ngàn) • một trăm ngàn (ngàn) 𤾓𠦳 • 𠬠𤾓𠦳 ức • một ức • chục vạn[1] • 𠬠億 • 𨒒萬 The "mười/𨒒" and "một/𠬠" within "mười vạn/𨒒萬" and "một ức/𠬠億" are native Vietnamese (intrinsic term) morphemes.
1,000,000 (none) (none) triệu • một triệu • một trăm vạn[2] • 𠬠兆 • 𠬠𤾓萬 The "một/𠬠" and "trăm/𤾓" within "một triệu/𠬠兆" and "một trăm vạn/𠬠𤾓萬" are native Vietnamese (intrinsic term) morphemes.
10,000,000 (mixed usage of Sino-Vietnamese and native Vietnamese systems) (mixed usage of Sino-Vietnamese and native Vietnamese systems) mười triệu 𨒒兆 The "mười/𨒒" within "mười triệu/𨒒兆" is a native Vietnamese (intrinsic term) morpheme.
100,000,000 (mixed usage of Sino-Vietnamese and native Vietnamese systems) (mixed usage of Sino-Vietnamese and native Vietnamese systems) trăm triệu 𤾓兆 The "trăm/𤾓" within "trăm triệu/𤾓兆" is a native Vietnamese (intrinsic term) morpheme.
1,000,000,000 (none) (none) tỷ [3]
1012 (mixed usage of Sino-Vietnamese and native Vietnamese systems) (mixed usage of Sino-Vietnamese and native Vietnamese systems) nghìn (ngàn) tỷ 𠦳秭
1015 (none) (none) triệu tỷ 兆秭
1018 (none) (none) tỷ tỷ 秭秭

Some other features of Vietnamese numerals include the following:

  • Outside of fixed Sino-Vietnamese expressions, Sino-Vietnamese words are usually used in combination with native Vietnamese words. For instance, "mười triệu" combines native "mười" and Sino-Vietnamese "triệu".
  • Modern Vietnamese separates place values in thousands instead of myriads. For example, "123123123" is recorded in Vietnamese as "một trăm nhị mươi tía triệu một trăm nhị mươi tía nghìn (ngàn) một trăm nhị mươi ba, or '123 million, 123 thousand and 123'.[4] Meanwhile, in Chinese, Japanese & Korean, the same number is rendered as "1億2312萬3123" (1 hundred-million, 2312 ten-thousand and 3123).
  • Sino-Vietnamese numbers are not in frequent use in modern Vietnamese. Sino-Vietnamese numbers such as "vạn/萬" 'ten thousand', "ức/億" 'hundred-thousand' and "triệu/兆" 'million' are used for figures exceeding one thousand, but with the exception of "triệu" are becoming less commonly used. Number values for these words are used for each numeral increasing tenfold in digit value, 億 being the number for 105, 兆 for 106, et cetera. However, Triệu in Vietnamese and 兆 in Modern Chinese now have different values.

Other figures[edit]

Number chữ Quốc ngữ Hán-Nôm Notes
11 mười một 𨒒𠬠
12 mười nhị • một tá 𨒒𠄩 • 𠬠打 "một tá/𠬠打" is often used within mathematics-related occasions, lớn which "" represents the foreign loanword "dozen".
14 mười tư • chục tư 𨒒𦊚 • 𨒒四 "mười tư/𨒒四" is often used within literature-related occasions, lớn which "tư/四" forms part of the Sino-Vietnamese vocabulary.
15 mười lăm 𨒒𠄻 Here, five is pronounced "lăm/𠄻", or also "nhăm/𠄶" by some speakers in the north.
19 mười chín 𨒒𠃩
20 hai mươi • nhị chục 𠄩𨒒 • 𠄩𨔿
21 hai mươi mốt 𠄩𨒒𠬠 For numbers which include the digit 1 from 21 lớn 91, the number 1 is pronounced "mốt".
24 hai mươi tư 𠄩𨒒四 When the digit 4 appears in numbers after trăng tròn as the last digit of a 3-digit group, it is more common lớn use "tư/四".
25 hai mươi lăm 𠄩𨒒𠄻 Here, five is pronounced "lăm".
50 năm mươi • năm chục 𠄼𨒒 • 𠄼𨔿 When "𨒒" (10) appears after the number trăng tròn, the pronunciation changes lớn "mươi".
101 một trăm linh một • một trăm lẻ một 𠬠𤾓零𠬠 • 𠬠𤾓𥘶𠬠 "Một trăm linh một/𠬠𤾓零𠬠" is the Northern khuông, where "linh/零" forms part of the Sino-Vietnamese vocabulary; "một trăm lẻ một/𠬠𤾓𥘶𠬠" is commonly used in the Southern and Central dialect groups of Vietnam.
1001 một ngàn (ngàn) ko trăm linh một • một ngàn (ngàn) ko trăm lẻ một 𠬠𠦳空𤾓零𠬠 • 𠬠𠦳空𤾓𥘶𠬠 When the hundreds digit is occupied by a zero, these are expressed using "không trăm/空𤾓".
10055 mười ngàn (ngàn) ko trăm năm mươi lăm 𨒒𠦳空𤾓𠄼𨒒𠄻
  • When the number 1 appears after trăng tròn in the unit digit, the pronunciation changes lớn "mốt".
  • When the number 4 appears after trăng tròn in the unit digit, it is more common lớn use Sino-Vietnamese "tư/四".
  • When the number 5 appears after 10 in the unit digit, the pronunciation changes lớn "lăm/𠄻".
  • When "mười" appears after trăng tròn, the pronunciation changes lớn "mươi".

Ordinal numbers[edit]

Vietnamese ordinal numbers are generally preceded by the prefix "thứ-", which is a Sino-Vietnamese word which corresponds lớn "次-". For the ordinal numbers of one and four, the Sino-Vietnamese readings "nhất/一" and "tư/四" are more commonly used; two is occasionally rendered using the Sino-Vietnamese "nhị/二". In all other cases, the native Vietnamese number is used.

In formal cases, the ordinal number with the structure "đệ (第) + Sino-Vietnamese numbers" is used, especially in calling the generation of monarches, with an example being Nữ vương vãi Elizabeth đệ nhị/女王 Elizabeth 第二 (Queen Elizabeth II).

Ordinal number chữ Quốc ngữ Hán-Nôm
1st thứ nhất 次一
2nd thứ nhị • loại nhì 次𠄩 • 次二
3rd thứ ba 次𠀧
4th thứ tư 次四
5th thứ năm 次𠄼
nth thứ "n" 次「n」


See also[edit]

  • Japanese numerals, Korean numerals, Chinese numerals