Thoughts for novice language learners.
Chinese vs. Vietnamese language learning
Nope, this is not about KungFu fighting. We are talking about languages here!
Chinese and Vietnamese are two languages that are spoken in East and Southeast Asia, with a significant number of speakers in other parts of the world as well. While both languages belong to the Austroasiatic language family and share some similarities, there are also a number of differences between them in terms of their writing systems, the number of speakers, and the regions where they are spoken.
Chinese vs. Vietnamese script
One major difference between Chinese and Vietnamese is their writing systems. Chinese uses a logographic writing system, which means that each character represents a word or concept, rather than a sound. There are over 50,000 Chinese characters, and learning to read and write Chinese can be quite challenging for English speakers, as the characters are often very different from the letters of the English alphabet.
On the other hand, Vietnamese uses a modified version of the Latin alphabet, with additional diacritic marks to represent certain sounds that are not found in English. While learning to read and write Vietnamese can still be challenging for English speakers, it is generally considered easier than learning to read and write Chinese, as the writing system is more familiar and there are fewer characters to learn.
How many speakers of Vietnamese and Chinese are there?
Another difference between Chinese and Vietnamese is the number of speakers. Chinese is spoken by over 1.4 billion people around the world, making it the most widely spoken language in the world. It is the official language of China, as well as one of the official languages of Taiwan, Singapore, and the United Nations.
Vietnamese, on the other hand, is spoken by around 100 million people, primarily in Vietnam, where it is the official language. It is also spoken by a significant number of people in other countries in Southeast Asia, such as Cambodia and Laos, as well as by smaller communities around the world.
Finally, there are differences between Chinese and Vietnamese in terms of the regions where they are spoken. Chinese is spoken primarily in China, Taiwan, and other parts of East Asia, while Vietnamese is spoken primarily in Vietnam, as well as in other parts of Southeast Asia.
Overall, while Chinese and Vietnamese share some similarities, there are also a number of differences between them in terms of their writing systems, the number of speakers, and the regions where they are spoken. For English speakers, Vietnamese may be easier to learn due to its familiar writing system, but both languages can be challenging to learn due to their complex grammar and unfamiliar sounds.