Constructing a Glossary of Vietnamese Chronicles Using Modern Vietnamese Language

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Chiem Thi Nguyen

Abstract

The Vietnamese chronicles have been very important for the study of Vietnamese history, especially to Thai historians or researchers. At present, many of the specific nouns found in Tianwan’s Vietnamese chronicles are distorted when compared to the same documents recorded in modern Vietnamese language (Chữ Quốc Ngữ). Such distortion in Thai and Vietnamese documents could be from the use of ancient Chinese-originated words which are no longer realized or the replacement by other words. As a result, many proper names, positions, places, and other nouns no longer match the Vietnamese current ones. It is necessary to collect the important common and proper nouns that appear in this version of the chronicles in Thai and construct a glossary of Vietnamese chronicles. 3,297 words were collected. It was found that most of the common and proper nouns in the chronicles are Vietnamese words, transliterated into Thai from the Vietnamese Southern accent. Repeated words, which have the same meaning, are spelled differently. A person's name has several versions, which could be called by rank, position, or job title. The terms that refer to contemporary places are mostly transliterated from Chinese. The glossary was categorized and sorted by consonants from /gor-gai/ to /ho-nok-huk/ (the Thai alphabet consequence), was matched with the same indication of the nouns in Vietnamese, and finally transliterated back into Thai.

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References

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