They just never became a fundamental way that Vietnamese people referred to each other or thought about themselves. Nguyen as a last name is a signifier of that persecution, from trying not to be seen as an enemy of the royal dynasty all the way back to the actions of … After all, you wouldn’t want to be sporting the last name of the previous emperor. In Vietnam, the most popular last name is Nguyen. Theoretically, all the Parks in Korea trace their ancestry back to that king, but after a peasant revolution in 1894, many peasants adopted the last name Park as a symbol of the abolishment of the caste system. Please click below to consent to the use of this technology while browsing our site. But that tendency to trace one’s name has baggage attached to it that not all Americans will have considered. The following is an incomplete list of individuals with this surname. (There were a few short-lived attempts at independence before the Vietnamese kicked the Chinese out in 939 AD.) Oh right, let’s take a minute to discuss the pronunciation of Nguyen. But it might not be that way for much longer. The people of Vietnam weren't all that attached to last names, and would frequently change them to that of the ruling family. In the U.S., an immigrant country, last names are hugely important. If you’re talking to our good friend Dũng, and he’s about the same age as you, you might call him Anh Dũng, meaning “Brother Dung.” To indicate age or gender differences or respect, you might substitute something like “aunt,” “grandmother,” or “child” in for “Anh.”. But the key is that pronunciation of Nguyen varies pretty widely. (Keep an eye out for “surnames” ending in “-sson” or including “Ben” or “Ibn.” Those are patronymic names.). They assigned these surnames pretty much randomly, but the original pool of last names largely came from Chinese last names, or Vietnamese derivations of them. Early Nguys. popularity and diffusion. Nguy is Wei in mainland China. The 14 most popular last names in the US? Back to taxes and bureaucrats. However, this event once more escalated the number of Nguyen people in the total population. Similar surnames: Nzuyen, Nguy, Uren, Geen, Nuhn, Guyer, Guyon, Goyen, Neuens, Naden. He was 94 years old. NO HONEY ITS NOT THAT HARD TO SAY IT. And when it’s not that important, you might as well change it if a new last name might help you in some way. If your child is over the age of fourteen, he or she will also need to get a fingerprint based criminal background check prior to filing the Petition. The Reasons behind Many Vietnamese Have the Nguyen Surname. For Vietnamese-Americans, which number over 1.5 million, having the last name Nguyen is a complicated subject. Surname Popularity Related Names Related Comments Namesakes. Even this tendency to take on the last name of the ruler is not totally unique to Vietnam. To learn more or withdraw consent, please visit our cookie policy. Now the new generation of the Truongs' migrated to the United States. “My guess is, senior Chinese administrators used their own personal names to designate people under their own aegis,” says O’Harrow. Click here for other possible spellings of Nguyén. The same thing happened in Korea with the name Park, originally the name of King Hyeokgeose Park, the founder of the thousand-year dynasty of one of the Three Kingdoms of Korea. The last name, in Vietnam, is there, but just isn’t that important. It may also be found in the variant forms: Nguyên , Nguyén , Nguyèn or Nguyêñ . The Smith part was a good translation, as Nguyen is the most common Vietnamese surname, inherited from a royal dynasty. This kind of thing happened a lot; the tendency of the imperialist to just bestow his name on the people he conquered can be seen everywhere from the Philippines (which has tons of Spanish last names) to the U.S. (where black Americans often have the names of the owners of slave ancestors) to the Indian state of Goa (Portuguese). Either way, it seems likely that some mid-level Chinese bureaucrat, in seeking to figure out who actually lived in his newly conquered Vietnamese territory, simply decided that everyone living there would also be named Ruan—which became Nguyen. This was the family name of a major Vietnamese royal dynasty. In the United States, the most popular last name is Smith. Nguyen. The entire idea of a family name was unknown to most of the world unless you were conquered by a place that used them. This name is most often used as a last name, 100% of the time. Search UK census records for Nguyen The Nguyen Dynasty which was the last Dynasty of Vietnam is the main reason for that. Dagli Orti/De Agostini/Getty Images, Caught: A 50-Pound Carp in the Middle of Los Angeles, Tropical Storms Were Once Named After Wives, Girlfriends, and Disliked Politicians, Why North Carolina Is the Most Linguistically Diverse U.S. State, The Mischievous 'Ghost Hoaxers' of 19th-Century Australia, The Grim History Hidden Under a Baltimore Parking Lot, Hawaiʻi’s Native-Language Newspaper Archive, 'Discovering' Mexico's Monarch Butterfly Migration, The Real Story Behind George Washington's Dentures, The Beautiful Complexity of Naming Every Living Thing, Photographer and date unknown (pre-1953)/Public Domain. The last name Nguyen (Arabic: نغيين, Russian: Нгуйен) is found most frequently in Vietnam. Search US census records for Nguy That “Ng” beginning is not a sound that Westerners are use to as an opener to a word. In most cases, however, these people aren’t even related. They can indicate where you’re from, right down to the village; the profession of a relative deep in your past; how long it’s been since your ancestors emigrated; your religion; your social status. Nguyen is the 7th most common family name in Australia, and the 54th most common in France. After two centuries of binomial nomenclature, scientists are nowhere close to running out of things to document. The last name is the 5,057,337 th most commonly used surname globally. Based on US Census Bureau data the estimated population of people named NGUY is 1,179, the rank is 23,547 and the proportion per 100k Americans named NGUY is 0.37. If you search, you’ll find dozens of extremely confident declarations about the correct way to say the name. Vietnam has a few different dialects, with the biggest division between them being geographical, namely north-south. After all, there were tons of those mid-level bureaucrats handing out family names. It is spelled Ng in Hong-Kong. How many people with the first name Minh have been born in the United States? Alternative spellings in Nguyen genealogy include Nyguyen, Yuen, Yuan, and Ruan. It’s Vietnam’s equivalent to the Kims and Parks of Korea or the Smiths and Johnsons of America but much, much more widespread since 2 out of … The existence of last names in Vietnam dates to 111 BC, the beginning of a lengthy thousand-year occupation of the country by the Han Dynasty in China. Pronounced Pron. Instead, the usual way to refer to somebody else is with something O’Harrow calls a “fictive kinship term.” Essentially, you refer to someone by their given name, and add some kind of family-based modifier which indicates the relationship between the speaker and listener. Like a window into their day-to-day life, Nguyen census records can tell you where and how your ancestors worked, their level of education, veteran status, and more. The following is an incomplete list of individuals with this surname. The origin of Nguy is Chinese. Dagli Orti/De Agostini/Getty Images; Right: mc559, DEA/G. 1983). Fewer than 6 percent. 271K Historical Documents. Basically, the Chinese (and later the Romans and Normans) conquered all these places with all these people, and they needed some way to keep track of them so they could be taxed. Despite the French’s decision, Nguyen still was the most common last name amongst the Vietnamese. Type Surname (from nickname) Usage Vietnamese. Though last names in Vietnam are, thanks to that early period under Chinese control, much older than they are in most parts of the world, the Vietnamese never seemed to much care about them. Why 40% of Vietnamese People Have the Same Last Name. “I’d be interested, but I just don’t think there’d be a way to learn much more.”. Somewhere between 30 and 40 percent of the country’s population. It is likely that the Vietnamese, prior to Chinese domination, did not use last names, (or family names, which we should call them, given that in Vietnam and many other places, this name does not come last). After an African-American cemetery was bulldozed, families wondered what happened to the graves. There are 12 census records available for the last name Nguy. There are 126.44 people named NGUYEN for every 100,000 Americans. Nguyen (guen): In Japanese, it can be written as グエン . Name Origin. Well before the time of China’s occupation of Vietnam, the Chinese had a sophisticated system of family names for a pretty basic reason: taxes. As it could not be otherwise, the most widespread all over … Nguyen doesn’t indicate much more than that you are Vietnamese. Before this time, nobody really knows how the Vietnamese handled names, due to lack of written records. A submission from Canada says the name Nguyen means "As a given name, spelled Nguyen, means 'complete, whole'; as a last name spelled Nguyen, it is the name of the final Vietnamese imperial dynasty." The Chinese have had family names for thousands of years, sometimes indicating occupation, social status, or membership of a minority group. Every weekday we compile our most wondrous stories and deliver them straight to you. Outside of Vietnam, the surname is commonly rendered without diacritics, as Nguyen. Vietnamese (Nguyêtilde;n) : unexplained. To stave off boredom, some people donned sheets and menaced the public. The surname Nguyen is believed to have originated in the Chinese surname "Ruan" (in the Mandarin language) or Yuen (Cantonese), owing to China’s long domination over Vietnam. Want a storm named after you? The use of surname did not appear until the colonial period. Nguyen is a Vietnamese last name that no one can pronounce correctly, not even high school teachers who have probably had 19 Nguyen’s last year. None of that explains why Nguyen is such a popular family name in Vietnam. Another way to obtain a name change for your child would be to file a Petition for a Name Change pursuant to §13-15-101, C.R.S. As a last name Minh was the 108,734 th most popular name in 2010. Save. “If I have kids, I don’t really care if their name is Nguyen, because it doesn’t really attach them to anything besides, maybe, ‘non-white.’”, Kevin can’t really trace back his history using 23andMe or Ancestry.com or any of those sites, either. Learn how to say Nguyen with Japanese accent. It is derived from "ruan", a type of stringed instrument. These are not wrong, necessarily, but a central problem is that, well, there isn’t really one correct way to say Nguyen. No purchase necessary. Offer subject to change without notice. The conquering nations such as France, China, Spain, Portugal, Germany and the United States of America brought the surnames into practice to differentiate among many people that had the same first names. “It’s a signifier for being Vietnamese, but when 40 percent of the Vietnamese population is Nguyen, it doesn’t really mean that much,” says Kevin Nguyen, a friend of mine who works as the digital deputy editor of GQ. All rights reserved. The most popular last name in Vietnam is Nguyen, which was the name of the ruling dynasty from 1802 to 1945. Outside of Vietnam, the surname is commonly rendered without diacritics, as Nguyen. Note that Wei and Nguy sound the same. Sign up for our newsletter and enter to win the second edition of our book. Nguyen Name Meaning. “This tradition of showing loyalty to a leader by taking the family name is probably the origin of why there are so many Nguyens in Vietnam,” says O’Harrow. It’s likely that there were plenty of people with the last name Nguyen before then, as there were never all that many last names in Vietnam to begin with, but that percentage surely shot up during the dynasty’s reign. Follow us on social media to add even more wonder to your day. Nguyen is the most common Vietnamese surname. The surname Nguyen is believed to have originated from the Chinese surname "Ruan" (in Mandarin) or Yuen (Cantonese), owing to China’s long domination over Vietnam. Like us on Facebook to get the latest on the world's hidden wonders. Nguyén occurs more in Sweden more than any other country or territory. The last name Truong started in a city called Hue, in Central Vietnam. How Common Is The Last Name Nguyén? Guess what the last ruling family in Vietnam was? This has all been further complicated by the Vietnamese diaspora. Some people estimate that as many as 40% of people of Vietnamese descent have a form of this surname. In the interest of easier assimilation, Western given names are pretty popular—you may know a Katie Nguyen or a Charles Nguyen—but Nguyen, with a spelling that would immediately confuse Westerners, remains difficult. Nguyen is a pretty common last name in Vietnam. © 2020 Atlas Obscura. Vietnam is one of those. We depend on ad revenue to craft and curate stories about the world’s hidden wonders. Follow us on Twitter to get the latest on the world's hidden wonders. Almost every person who has tried to pronounce this name has said “nah-goo-jen?”. This was the family name of a major Vietnamese royal dynasty. These are the earliest records we have of the Nguy family. "Nguyễn is the most common Vietnamese family name. Source: Dictionary of American Family Names ©2013, Oxford University Press. About 40 percent of Vietnam's population is named Nguyen. Atlas Obscura and our trusted partners use technology such as cookies on our website to personalise ads, support social media features, and analyse our traffic. Find information about the Nguyen Chi family, see the geographical distribution of the Nguyen Chi last name. “Even if I wanted to sign up for an ancestry-lineage type site, I don’t think it would get very far, because there’s just so little to go on with my last name, and there are no records of anyone past my grandparents in Vietnam,” says Nguyen. Search Canadian census records for Nguyen Based on US Census Bureau data the estimated population of people named NGUYEN is 366,237, the rank is 57 and the proportion per 100k Americans named NGUYEN is … In fact even the name “Vietnam” comes from the Chinese; “viet” is the Vietnamese version of the word the Chinese used to describe the people southeast of Yunnan Province. Prior to the 18th century, much of the world did not use family names. Musician Nguyen Van Ty, a member of Vietnam Musicians’ Association, passed away yesterday afternoon in HCM City after a long illness. Consider supporting our work by becoming a member for as little as $5 a month. “Under the Chinese colonial rulership, the Chinese typically will designate a family name to keep tax records,” says Stephen O’Harrow, the chairman of Indo-Pacific Languages and head of the Vietnamese department the University of Hawai`i at Mānoa. Yep, the Nguyễn Dynasty, which ruled from 1802 to 1945. Offer available only in the U.S. (including Puerto Rico). Those conquerors included the Romans, the Normans, the Chinese, and later the Spanish, the Portuguese, the Germans, and the Americans. How can you be sure that you’re taxing the right Dũng, when there are a dozen of them in the same village and they’re referred to as “Uncle Dũng” and “Brother Dũng”? Family name origins & meanings. My own last name doesn’t seem to have existed before my great-grandfather came to the U.S. in the early 20th century; searches stop abruptly at the ship’s manifest. Nguyen, for example, came from the Chinese Ruan. Winner will be selected at random on 01/01/2021. With Vietnam's chaotic history, during the various changes of power (Ly, Tran, Ho, Mac Dynasties), many Vietnamese changed their names, sometimes by force and sometimes by choice in order to avoid retribution by the new power. Nguyễn is the most common Vietnamese surname, held by an estimated 40 percent of Vietnamese people. Nguyen Chi genealogy and family history facts. Southern Vietnamese tend to clip some of their sounds, so Nguyen would be pronounced something like “Win” or “Wen.” Northern Vietnamese would keep it, giving a pronunciation more like “N’Win” or “Nuh’Win,” all done as best you can in one syllable. Why did this one become so popular? This name is most often used as a last name, 99% of the time. “They used a limited number of family names for the people under their jurisdiction.”. There are 579 census records available for the last name Nguyen. More common would be what’s called a “patronymic” name, meaning your full name would literally translate as something like “Steve son of Bob.” Patronymic names refer only to the generation immediately before and remain common in much of the world, especially in Scandinavia and the Middle East. Someone with the last name Nguyen is going to have basically no luck tracing their heritage back beyond a generation or two, will not be able to use search engines to find out much of anything about themselves. “It’s funny, when people are really specific or proud of their last name or heritage, it’s almost a form of privilege,” says Nguyen. As per the 2010 census, about 0.8 percent of Americans have it. Common Vietnamese last names are: Hoang Nguyen Ho Tran Pham Ha Le Vu Truong and many more! Ruan itself might come from an ancient Chinese state of the same name, or maybe from the ancient lute-like instrument also called a ruan. and is of Vietnamese origin. The estimate for how many people answer to it? His real name is Nguyen Sinh Cung. See. Nguyen is a surname of Chinese origin that is very popular in Vietnam and other Southeast Asian countries. It may also be found as a variant: Nguyen, Nguyên, Nguyèn or Nguyêñ. François-Xavier Cardinal Nguyễn Văn Thuận, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=List_of_people_with_surname_Nguyễn&oldid=966252494, Short description is different from Wikidata, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, Dong Nguyen, one of the title character's love interests in, This page was last edited on 6 July 2020, at 00:52. In the United States, it is the 57th most common family name according to the 2000 Census, as well as the most common exclusively Asian surname. Vietnamese (Nguy [ecirctilde]n): unexplained. Private Trip: Immersive Art and Otherworldly Landscapes of Santa Fe, Sacrario Militare di Castel Dante (Castel Dante War Memorial), This Pennsylvanian Winter Cocktail Is Sweet, Spicy, and Possibly Explosive, The Danish Christmas Porridge That Appeased a Vengeful 'House Elf', When in Drought, Ancestral Puebloans Turned to Ice Blocks in Lava Tubes, How a Long-Planned Pandemic Exhibit Adapted to COVID-19, How a Blacksmith in Jordan Created His Own Sign Language, In Naples, Praying With Skulls Is an Ancient Tradition, Inside a Domed Pyramid With Astounding Acoustics and a History of Miracles, See the Mysterious Horned Helmet of Henry VIII, Searching for Home and Connection Through Typewritten Poetry, Left: DEA/G. Nguy is a last name that is converted from Chinese to Vietnamese. The 14 most popular last names in Vietnam account for well over 90 percent of the population. It was the Chinese who gave Vietnam family names. -A given Vietnamese Family Name dated back fourth generation before the Nguyen Dynasty. Like Atlas Obscura and get our latest and greatest stories in your Facebook feed. Like a window into their day-to-day life, Nguyen census records can tell you where and how your ancestors worked, their level of education, veteran status, and more. Spelled with diacritics, Nguyễn is a Vietnamese surname. Like a window into their day-to-day life, Nguy census records can tell you where and how your ancestors worked, their level of education, veteran status, and more. “Vietnamese has no pronouns, like he or she or you or they,” says O’Harrow. Ho Chi Minh, the most influential public figure during the Vietnam War also shared Nguyen as a part of his name. This may or may not be a continuation of the way names were used before the Chinese came—we really don’t know—but ever since, Vietnamese people have tended to take on the last name of whoever was in power at the time. But most of these places didn’t have family names, which made them a real pain to monitor. Who knows? So there is a tendency to kind of let pronunciation slide, creating a whole new range of acceptable ways to say Nguyen. For one thing, 23andMe has such a tiny number of Asian DNA samples that it basically can’t get any information beyond “Asian,” which is not very helpful. Well, it's complicated. “Like sure, everyone cares about their last name, until you’re persecuted and that line is broken.” Nguyen as a last name is a signifier of that persecution, from trying not to be seen as an enemy of the royal dynasty all the way back to the actions of a probably disinterested Chinese bureaucrat. For other potential spellings of this surname click here . This does not make them unusual at all. There are 579 census records available for the last name Nguyen. He was born into a … In re Marriage of Nguyen, 684 P.2d 258 (Colo. App. (After all, if someone named Katie Nguyen says it’s fine for you to pronounce it “NEW-yen,” who are we to argue?) Nguyễn is the most common Vietnamese surname, held by an estimated 40 percent of Vietnamese people. From 1880 to 2018, the Social Security Administration has recorded 2,184 babies born with the first name Minh in the United States. NGWEE-UN (Vietnamese) NGWEE-UNG (Vietnamese) WIN (English) About 60% of Vietnamese you meet will have this last name. So the Chinese just started handing out last names to people. Li or Lee - More than 100 million people. It was seen as a way to show loyalty, a notion which required the relatively frequent changing of names with the succession of rulers. 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A family name was unknown to most of these places didn ’ t indicate much more than that you Vietnamese. Supporting our work by becoming a member for as little as $ 5 a month ’ find. In your Facebook feed sometimes indicating occupation, social status, or membership of a minority group pronounce. To document spellings of this surname nguyá » n is the most common Vietnamese surname, held an...
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