Perhaps you are of Vietnamese descent but have never been able to discover your culture too much since you have always lived away from Vietnam. No matter how far away you live physically from your roots, you can’t stay detached for too long in any manner.
Have you ever wondered what your Vietnamese name means? Or do certain Vietnamese last names intrigue you?
Do you have a soft corner for Vietnamese names? Are you of Vietnamese or Chinese descent? Do you want to know all about Vietnamese last names?
Your wish is granted! Here I have come up with a list of some of the most popular last names in Vietnam.
Did you know that the Vietnamese didn’t have any last name until about 111 B.C., when China conquered it?
They were not much attached to their last names, and so, most of the time, they would change them to the surnames of the ruling family.
There is a fascinating culture in Vietnam, especially when it comes to naming a baby. They have a family name, which is their first name, the second is their middle name, and the third is their given name. And just as in many other counties, a child inherits their family name from their parents.
Generally, they use the father’s surname. But, of course, there are families that use the name of both the mother and the father. Then there are names that don’t have any middle name at all! In that case, the child has two given names. Interesting, isn’t it?
Popular Vietnamese Last Names
Here are some of the most popular and unique last names given to Vietnamese babies. You will see that most of the names have Chinese origin, but then some have Asian origin too. Read on
Are you looking for a surname that is not that common in Vietnam? How about Au?
This last name has its roots in Vietnam and China. It translates to water and peace.
This surname has some similarities with another surname that originates from China: Wang.
It holds the meaning of ‘to rule.’
This last name has its roots in the Chinese language.
It carries with it the meaning of mugwort.
This last name has its roots in Vietnam.
Did I tell you that this surname has multiple meanings?
It includes the meanings of bright, flower, intelligent, petal, and brave.
This last name has its origin in Vietnam.
It translates to protection.
This last name has its root in Vietnam.
It holds the meaning of ocean and sea.
Did you know that this surname is also used as a personal surname for boys?
And it has two meanings that are completely different from each other: three and father.
This surname has its origin in the Chinese language.
It holds the meaning of big.
This Vietnamese last name originated in the same country.
It carries with it the meaning of secretive.
Did I tell you that this last name is used mostly by boys?
It originated in Vietnam and held the meaning of flourishing and healthy.
This surname used in Vietnam has its roots in the Chinese language.
It holds the meaning of praise.
This surname has its roots in China.
It holds the meaning of pond.
This last name of Chinese origin comes with the meaning of cart.
It has its roots in the Chinese language.
Did I tell you that this surname has more than one meaning?
It holds the meanings of public, fair, equitable, fair, and bush.
This popular last name originated in China. The Romanized version of Tsao is this name.
It holds the meaning of the defendant.
This last name came from the French language.
It translates to hound.
Did you know this last name is another form of Kam?
It has its roots in the Chinese language, and it holds the meaning of sweet.
This last name has both Chinese and Vietnamese roots.
Did I tell you that it is another form of the Chinese last name Chow?
It translates to pearl.
This last name is very common in Vietnam.
It holds the meaning of ‘save.’
This Vietnamese last name originated in the Chinese language.
It holds the meaning of popular.
The last name Du originated in China.
It carries with it the meaning of birch leaf pear.
Did you know where this Vietnamese last name took its inspiration from?
Well, it is Don – an English word. And it holds with it the meaning of one who rules the world.
This Vietnamese last name is topographical.
It is considered a prestigious name and given a lot of respect because people in Vietnam used to see the people with this surname as the protectors of the country.
It holds the meaning of at the down.
Bonus Read: 50 Rare Boy Names With Meanings
This surname used in Vietnam is quite unique. With its origin in Vietnam, this name holds the meaning of encampment.
This last name has its roots in the Old German language.
It holds the meaning of tradition.
This last name has its roots in the Zhou dynasty in China.
It translates to an association.
Did you know that this pretty Vietnamese surname has a biblical reference to it?
In Hebrew, it holds the meaning of God is my judge. And when it comes to the Chinese language, it translates to different.
This Vietnamese surname has its roots in the Chinese language.
It translates to support.
This last name has its roots in Sino-Vietnamese origin.
It holds the meaning of a river.
Originated from the Chinese language, this name translates to praise.
Did you know that Huynh is a variant of Hoang – a Vietnamese and Chinese origin last name?
It holds the meaning of yellow.
Did I tell you how popular this last name is in Vietnam?
It has its roots in China, and it holds the meaning of ‘to promise.’
This is a common Sino-Vietnamese last name.
It carries with it the meaning of friend.
Originated in China, this last name holds the meaning of ‘to praise.’
This name of Chinese origin is topographical in nature.
It refers to the people belonging to Mount Hua in China.
The meaning of this surname is ‘flood.’
And did I tell you that Hong is a famous dynasty in China?
Gongongshi had the surname Gong. But then, they had to transform it into Hong so that they could escape from their enemies.
This name has both Vietnamese and Chinese origins.
It translates to yellow. Did I tell you that Hoang is one of the most popular last names used by the people in Vietnam?
Also Read: 100 British Last Names for Boys and Girls
This surname of Chinese origin holds the meaning of perfect.
This last name is very popular in Chinese, although it is a Vietnamese name.
It carries with it the meaning of together.
This Vietnamese last name has its origin in the Chinese language.
But, you know, this is a Sino-Vietnamese name too – as most people believe.
It holds the meaning of the ocean.
This last name has its roots in the Vietnamese language.
It translates to good luck.
This surname has its roots in Korea. Another variant of this name is Keum.
It translates to gold.
Did you know Kieu is used by girls as their first names too?
So, this is a unisex name with Vietnamese roots. It translates to graceful.
This is a famous surname in Vietnam.
I find it to be somewhat similar to the Korean and Chinese name Kong.
The name holds the meaning of ‘peaceful.’
This last name is taken from Qiu – a Chinese surname.
It translates to autumn.
This is a popular surname in Vietnam.
It carries the meaning of resembling a precious stone.
This name originated in China. It is very popular in Chinese communities residing in Vietnam.
It translates to a tree branch and represents a division.
This short surname of Vietnamese origin translates to reason.
This last name is very common in East Asia. It is another form of Liu – a Chinese surname.
It means a battle-ax.
This last name is pretty similar to Long – a Chinese surname that holds the meaning of dragon.
The meaning of this Chinese-originated surname is a road.
This name is quite popular in both Vietnam and China.
It translates to thunder.
This Chinese surname holds the meaning of ‘to sift.’
Did I tell you how common this family name is in Vietnam?
It translates to spirit.
Again, this is another common surname found in the people of Vietnam.
It translates to a willow tree.
And this name is used as a first name for baby girls.
Did I tell you that Liang is an ancient dynasty in China?
This popular last name in Vietnam carries with it the meaning of bridge.
This last name has its roots in Vietnam.
And did you know the Dynasty of Le was very popular?
This is a name that originated in the Hebrew language.
It translates to white.
This surname is taken from Luo – a Chinese surname.
It holds the meaning of ‘to gather.’
This surname has its roots in China. And it is used by many people in countries of East Asia.
It holds the meaning of trustworthiness.
This common last name of Chinese and Vietnamese origin is popular among Chinese emigrants.
It translates to a camel.
This Vietnamese last name is quite similar to Ming – a Chinese name.
It translates to bright.
This surname has both Scottish and Vietnamese origins.
In the Gaelic language, it translates to son.
Did you know that the Mac clan ruled Northern Vietnam in the 16th century?
Did you know that about 40% of families in Vietnam have the surname Nguyen?
Yes, it is that popular! It holds the meaning of a musical instrument.
It is taken from the Chinese Ruan, and it is the name of a royal dynasty in Vietnam. Tons of people in Vietnam changed their surname to Nguyen to show how loyal they were to this dynasty.
This last name of people from Vietnam has its roots in the Chinese language.
It holds the meaning of a squad of five soldiers, and it is another form of Chinese Ao.
This is a popular surname that has been used by the famous Vietnamese clans.
It is a variant of Korean Oh and Chinese Wu.
Peng is a variant of another surname Pe.
It is very common in Vietnam. It translates to long.
This Vietnamese last name has variants in Japanese, Cantonese, and Chinese languages.
Some of its Asian variants are Gwak, Kuoko, and Guo.
This habitational surname means one who lives near the other city wall.
This surname has its roots in the Korean language. Some of its variants include Shon and Sohn.
Did you know Son was a clan’s name?
This surname used in Vietnam has its roots in the Burmese language. And it is popular around Asia, too.
It holds the meaning of a million.
This last name has its origins in the Chinese language.
It holds the meaning of quiet.
The surname, Bui, comes from the Chinese surname Pei and the Korean surname Bae. It also has Italian roots. It means plum or a plum flower.
In Vietnamese, Banh means ‘bread’ or ‘cake.’ It has a Chinese background and connection to the Chinese surname Peng. Banh is also a word that refers to an eclectic range of sweet and savory items.
Chu is a Vietnamese surname, which is known as Ju in the Korean language and Zhou and Zhu in Chinese. It is also often written as Chau.
Co, as a Vietnamese last comes from the Chinese language. The Chinese variant of it is known as Gu.
Cong is a Sino-Vietnamese surname. The meaning of this last name is public, equitable, or fair. It also has Chinese connections and can mean a bush or shrubbery.
Kien is the Dutch and German variant of ‘Kuhn.’ This surname also has French roots. As far as being a Vietnamese last name, it means ‘strong.’
Ngoc is a popular Vietnamese last name, especially for girls. The meaning of it is jade, pearl, or gem.
The Vietnamese last name, Nguy, comes from the Chinese surname, Wei. It means ‘danger’ or ‘to endanger.’
Nhan is a common Vietnamese surname given to boys. The meaning of this last name is ‘person.’
Nong is a surname that has both Chinese and Vietnamese roots. The meanings associated with this name are agriculture, peasant, diligent, and to farm.
Phan is a Vietnamese surname whose roots can be traced back to China. The meanings of this last name are barrier, hedge, and vessel.
Phong is both a Vietnamese first name and a last name. The meaning associated with this surname is ‘wind.’
Phuong, as a surname, has Chinese and Vietnamese roots. The meaning of Phuong is phoenix, way, or direction. Based on its Chinese background, it can also mean honest and upright.
Phung is a last name that one would find in Chinese and Vietnamese communities. The meanings linked to Phung include assisting, wading, to attack, great, and galloping.
Tham is a last name often seen among girls in the Vietnamese community. The meanings associated with this surname are to pour, liquid, and place. It also has Buddhist roots.
As a last name, Thong has Vietnamese, Southeast Asian, and Cambodian roots. The meanings of Thong are gold and intelligent.
The Chinese and Vietnamese roots are present in the last name of Tong. The meanings linked to this surname include cases, items, clan, ancestor, model, purpose, and to have as one’s model.
Trang is often a popular Vietnamese last name among women. The meanings of Trang include intelligent and serious. The other meanings are narrow, village, and place of business.
Trieu is a commonly found unisex Vietnamese surname. The meaning of it is ‘a small wave’ or ‘tide. The Chinese equivalent of it is Zhao..’
Trinh is a common Vietnamese family name or surname. It’s also popular in Korea. The meanings linked to this name are order, formula, regulations, rules, journey, and sequence.
Are you looking for a unisex Vietnamese surname? Quang is a good one to go for. It means clear or pure.
Quoc is a common last name often found in Chinese and Vietnamese communities. The meanings of this surname include nation, country, and state.
The Vietnamese surname Voong is a variant of Hoàng. It could mean ‘to rule’ or ‘king.’
Vuong is a surname that has been popular in the Vietnamese community for quite a while. The meaning of Vuong is king, thereby giving it those royal feels.
Learning about different cultures is one of the most pleasurable things ever, and if it’s your own culture you’re exploring further, it becomes even more important.
Which Vietnamese last names did you like the most?
Let me know in the comments!
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