Soup of Bitter gourds infilled with pestled pork (Canh khố qua dồn thịt heo)

Soup of Bitter gourds infilled with pestled pork (Canh khố qua dồn thịt heo).

by tonytran2015 (Melbourne, Australia).

Click here for a full, up to date ORIGINAL ARTICLE and to help fighting the stealing of readers’ traffic.

(Blog No.2xx).

#Soup, #bitter gourd, #Canh khố qua, #, #MSG, Soup of Bitter gourds infilled with pestled pork (Canh khố qua dồn thịt heo).

The dish is a very simple, non-odoured, delicious, healthy low priced watery soup dish in Vietnamese and Cantonese cuisine. One of its variations is soup of only bitter gourds slices.

Non-odored dish means a dish that does not make your body have its aroma (smell) after eating.

1. Bitter gourds have bitter taste, one of the most complex taste.

Human beings are able to sense at least five known elemental tastes (each of which cannot be reproduced by any combination of other tastes) they are sweetness (having high concentration of sugar), saltiness (having high concentration of NaCl), sourness (having high concentration of H30+ ions), savoriness (having high concentration of MSG !), and bitterness which is the most complex taste (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taste).

Compounds that have an alkaline pH, such as baking soda, often have a bitter flavor (https://www.thespruceeats.com/what-is-bitterness-1328482) but some acidic compounds like coffee can also have a bitter flavor.
Bitter taste is brought about by many fundamentally different substances, high concentration of alkaloid having “basic nitrogen atoms”. In total there are about 35 different proteins in the sensory cells that respond to bitter substances. From an evolutionary standpoint, this can be explained by the many different bitter species of plants, some of which were poisonous. Recognizing which ones were indeed poisonous was a matter of survival, (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK279408/). (https://www.npr.org/sections/thesalt/2013/11/12/244789655/why-can-we-taste-bitter-flavors-turns-out-it-s-still-a-mystery), ( http://sitn.hms.harvard.edu/flash/2013/the-bittersweet-truth-of-sweet-and-bitter-taste-receptors/ )

Bitter gourds are the fruits of the herbaceous, tendril-bearing vines Momordica charantia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Momordica_charantia).

327px-Momordica_charantia_Blanco2.357-original

Figure: Bittergourd vine (original file https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Momordica_charantia_Blanco2.357-original.png, the file is in the public domain in its country of origin).

Bitter gourds also have many other names in Vietnamese, they are Mướp đắng, Cẩm lệ chi, Lại Bồ Đào (Cứu Mang Bản Thảo), Hồng cô nương (Quần Phương Phổ), Lương Qua (Quảng Châu Thực Vật Chí), Lại qua (Dân Gian Thường Dụng Thảo Dược Hối Biên), Hồng dương (Tuyền Châu Bản Thảo) (https://amp.thaythuoccuaban.com/vithuoc/khoqua.htm).

Bitter gourds are very bitter. The bitterness is caused by a tetracyclic triterpenoid compound called cucurbitacin, which also makes cucumbers bitter.

2. Claimed beneficial effects.

Bitter gourds have a long list of nutrients.

A portion of 100g of cooked, boiled (without salt) , drained, bitter gourds pods contains (https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/168394/nutrients):

Name Amount Unit Deriv. By

Water 93.95 g

Energy 19 kcal Calculated

Protein 0.84 g

Fiber, total dietary 2 g

Calcium, Ca 9 mg

Iron, Fe 0.38 mg

Magnesium, Mg 16 mg

Phosphorus, P 36 mg

Potassium, K 319 mg

Sodium, Na 6 mg

Zinc, Zn 0.77 mg

Copper, Cu 0.033 mg

Manganese, Mn 0.086 mg

Selenium, Se 0.2 µg Calculated from different food; From average values for food category; No adjustment; Retention factors not used

Vitamin C, total ascorbic acid 33 mg

Thiamin 0.051 mg

Riboflavin 0.053 mg

Niacin 0.28 mg

Pantothenic acid 0.193 mg

Vitamin B-6 0.041 mg

Folate, total 51 µg

Folate, food 51 µg

Folate, DFE 51 µg Calculated

Choline, total 10.8 mg Based on another form of the food or similar food; Concentration adjustment; Solids; Retention factors not used

Vitamin A, RAE 6 µg Calculated

Carotene, beta 68 µg Other procedure used from imputing

Vitamin A, IU 113 IU Calculated

Lutein + zeaxanthin 1323 µg Based on another form of the food or similar food; Concentration adjustment; Solids; Retention factors not used

Vitamin E (alpha-tocopherol) 0.14 mg Based on another form of the food or similar food; Concentration adjustment; Solids; Retention factors not used

Vitamin K (phylloquinone) 4.8 µg Based on another form of the food or similar food; Concentration adjustment; Solids; Retention factors not used

Fatty acids, total saturated 0.014 g

So various effects can be expected from bittergourds.

Bitter gourds are claimed by Vietnamese and Chinese traditional medicine to have many nutritional/medicinal components and benefits.

Bitter gourds are claimed by Vietnamese and Chinese traditional medicine to be effective in treating high blood pressure and diabetes (https://nhungmonthuocquy.blogspot.com/2009/03/vi-thuoc-kho-qua.html?m=1) (https://khoquarung.net/cong-dung-cua-kho-qua-rung-co-tac-dung-gi).

3. Contraindications.

Consumption of large amount (6ml/kg of body weight) of bitter gourds may be deadly (Uống 15-40ml/kg cơ thểthì sau6-18 giờ sẽ chết, Uống 6ml/kg cơ thể thì 80-90% sau 5-23 ngày thì chết (Trung Dược Đại Từ Điển), https://amp.thaythuoccuaban.com/vithuoc/khoqua.htm).

Bitter gourds may be harmful to pregnant women (Cho chuột có thai uống 6ml/Kg cơ thểcó thể làm cho tử cung ra máu, sau đó ít giờ thì chết, https://amp.thaythuoccuaban.com/vithuoc/khoqua.htm)

Bitter gourds should be mixed with a lot of ginger when consumed by people with weak digestion otherwise bittegourds may cause stomach ache and diarrhea in them (Người tỳ vị hư hàn, ăn Khổ qua sẽ bị thổ tả, bụng đau(Trấn Nam Bản Thảo), https://amp.thaythuoccuaban.com/vithuoc/khoqua.htm )

4. Preparation.

SoupOfBitterGourds

Figure: Soup of Bitter gourds infilled with pestled pork (Canh khố qua dồn thịt heo).

Open up bitter gourds longitudinally and remove all the seeds, they are the most bitter parts of the fruits. Soak the opened gourds in salt (NaCl) solution for half an hour to reduce their bitter taste. Fill the gourds with pestled pork. You may optionally tie up individual gourds by long leaves of chives to hide the longitudinal cuts.Cook the the gourds with infill of pestled pork in simmering water in a glass pot for half and hour.Place gourds into individual bowls, add parsley to the bowls.

The dish is ready to serve.

NOTE:

Glass or ceramic cook pots do not interfere with the taste of the soup.

5. Ingredients

Figure: Raw bitter gourds (Vietnamese/Chinese variety)

a- Raw green bitter gourds (Momordica charantia), of Chinese/Vietnamese variety are sold at around $4 AUS per kilogram. Each bitter gourd may weigh about 500g. The fruit has a distinct warty exterior (Chinese/Vietnamese variety is less warty than Indian variety) and an oblong shape. It is hollow in cross-section, with a relatively thin layer of flesh surrounding a central seed cavity filled with large, flat seeds and pith. A green fruit’s flesh is crunchy and watery in texture, similar to cucumber but bitter. The skin is tender and edible. Seeds and pith appear white in unripe fruits; to be removed before cooking.

b- Pork, to be chopped and pestled.

c- Parsley

d- Pepper,

e- Ginger (optional, for serving bittergourds to people with weak digestion).

WARNING:

All benefits discussed here are only for bitter gourds prepared WITHOUT monosodium glutamate. Current trend of Vietnamese and Chinese restaurants is to heavily lace all food in Mono sodium glutamate which may cause problems to your health.

Mono-sodium glutamate (MSG) changes the taste of this soup. Unprofessional cooks using non-authentic recipes may put in a lot of mono-sodium glutamate to fool customers. Traditional, authentic recipes have no such modern ingredient. Soup with MSG is watery, with little vegetable and little pork .

In the short term, mono-sodium glutamate may cause extreme headache, throat congestion, prolong thirst and swelling of your ankles and feet. Do NOT eat any non-authentic dish prepared with such ingredient.

6. Where to find it?

It is an inexpensive, common favorite dish (costing 30000VND =$1:50 US in 2018) in Vietnam (in Saigon).

I don’t know how much it would cost in a Vietnamese restaurant outside Vietnam.

References.

[1]. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taste

[2]. https://www.thespruceeats.com/what-is-bitterness-1328482

[3]. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK279408/

[4]. https://www.npr.org/sections/thesalt/2013/11/12/244789655/why-can-we-taste-bitter-flavors-turns-out-it-s-still-a-mystery

[5]. http://sitn.hms.harvard.edu/flash/2013/the-bittersweet-truth-of-sweet-and-bitter-taste-receptors/

[6]. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Momordica_charantia

[7]. https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/168394/nutrients

[8]. https://amp.thaythuoccuaban.com/vithuoc/khoqua.htm

[9]. https://nhungmonthuocquy.blogspot.com/2009/03/vi-thuoc-kho-qua.html?m=1

[10]. https://khoquarung.net/cong-dung-cua-kho-qua-rung-co-tac-dung-gi

[11]. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monosodium_glutamateRelated LIVING/HOW TO blogs:,Soup of Parsnip and Tomatoes.jpgAuthentic noodle soup with pork ribs or barbecue pork, posted 2018/03/06Mi Xa Xiu 3herbal noodle soup of stewed fried duck (mi vit tiem), posted 2017/11/23The agonizing choice of Vietnamese food dishes, posted September 27, 2017

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Chop a whole parsnip into small pieces of about 10g in weight each and boil it in a glass or ceramic cook pot until it becomes soft. Slice tomatoes into one eighth pieces and add to the broth and boils until tomato pieces also becomes soft as in the photo.

You may add some chopped shallots, chopped spring onions and ground pepper to suite your taste.

The soup is ready for serving.

NOTE:

Glass or ceramic cook pots do not interfere with the taste of the soup.
2. Ingredients

a. Parsnip plant (Pastinaca sativa) is a root vegetable closely related to the carrotand parsley.

Parsnips are sold in supermarket as tubers. They look like washed carrots but they are white, about 20cm to 40cm long. Current price is $4.00 AUD ($3 USD) per Kg.

Parsnip tubers had been used as a sweetener in Europe until replaced by beetroot and sugar-canes. They are rich in vitamins (C, E, B1, B6, B3, B5) and mineral metals (K, P, Mg, Ca, Na).

Parsnips repel aphids, Western organic planters plant them among cabbage plants to repel aphids, using no insecticide but parsnips’ natural odour.

Oriental (Eastern) herbalists claim that parsnips neutralize many toxic substances as well as render ineffective (proof ?) oriental oral medications. Herbalists’ wisdom advises against eating any parsnip together with pears, apple, grapes, medicines, ginseng, carrots (Rigorous proofs to claims are still not available).

b. Tomatoes are sold in supermarkets. Current price is $3.00 AUD ($2 USD) per Kg.

c. Shallots (Hành hương). Leeks (Hành Tây).

d. Spring onion (hành lá). Chives (Hẹ).

CAUTION:

Touching parsnip then exposure of the skin to sunlight may cause skin rash.

While the root of the parsnip is edible, the shoots and leaves of the plant have toxic sap containing furanocoumarins [1].

WARNINGS:

Mono-sodium glutamate (MSG) imitates the taste of this soup. Unprofessional cooks using non-authentic recipes may put in a lot of mono-sodium glutamate to fool customers. Traditional, authentic recipes have no such modern ingredient. Soup with MSG is watery, with few parsnips and few tomatoes.

In the short term, mono-sodium glutamate may cause extreme headache, throat congestion, prolong thirst and swelling of your ankles and feet. Do NOT eat any non-authentic dish prepared with such ingredient.
3. Contraindications [3].

Parsnips are not to be eaten while taking some herbal medications.

Parsnips are not to be eaten with [3, 4, 5, 6, 7]:

a. Carrots. Carrots have many enzymes that quickly destroy any beneficial vitamin C from parsnips [3,4].

b. Ginseng. [3].

c. Pears, apples, grapes. Cyanogenic acid from parsnip may react (proof ?) with some compounds of in these fruits [3,4] to produce toxic chemicals. Vietnamese herbalists and media [3,4,5,6,7] claimed that prolonged consumption of these toxic chemicals can even cause (proof ?) lumps on the necks.

d. “Wood ears” mushrooms (Auricularia auricula-judae). Eaters would have skin rash [4].

4. Where to find it?

It is an inexpensive, common favorite dish (costing 10000VND =$0:50 US in 2017) in Vietnam (in Saigon).

I don’t know how much it would cost in a Vietnamese restaurant outside Vietnam.

References.

[1]. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parsnip

[1b]. https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/ingredientsprofiles/Parsnip

[2]. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monosodium_glutamate

[3]. http://m.vietnamnet.vn/vn/suc-khoe/an-toan-thuc-pham/khong-nen-an-cu-cai-trang-voi-nhung-loai-nay-342952.html

[4]. http://us.24h.com.vn/suc-khoe-doi-song/5-thuc-pham-ky-an-voi-cu-cai-trang-vi-de-sinh-benh-c62a828710.html
[5]. http://m.soha.vn/song-khoe/cu-cai-vo-tinh-an-voi-nhung-thuc-pham-sau-rat-co-hai-20140401144246627.htm

[6]. https://m.vov.vn/suc-khoe/tac-dung-khong-ngo-cua-cu-cai-trang-366521.vov

[7]. https://m.baomoi.com/dung-bao-gio-ket-hop-cu-cai-trang-voi-5-thuc-pham-nay-keo-mang-hoa/c/23053807.epi

[8]. https://crookedbearcreekorganicherbs.com/2018/04/10/companion-planting-with-herbs/
Related LIVING/HOW TO blogs:

Authentic noodle soup with pork ribs or barbecue pork, posted 2018/03/06

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herbal noodle soup of stewed fried duck (mi vit tiem), posted 2017/11/23

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Rice as emergency food., posted December 24, 2016

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The Plastic Straw Debate — The Chronically Unimaginable

Did you know that plastic straws are being banned all across the world? That sounds like an amazing thing for the environment and wildlife. Don’t get me wrong, it is, but in the process, this straw ban is harming millions of disabled people. Most people are able to drink a beverage with or without a […]

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Comment by tonytran2015: Young Vietnamese children have always been taught to use short chopsticks, to keep the chopsticks tangential to the lips and never pointing into their heads.

Detecting Vietnamese color dyed fruits.

Detecting Vietnamese color dyed fruits.

by tonytran2015 (Melbourne, Australia).

Click here for a full, up to date ORIGINAL ARTICLE and to help fighting the stealing of readers’ traffic.

(Blog No.3xx).

#food dyes, #industrial dyes, #unapproved ingredients, #toxic ingredients, #toxic food test, #rubbing on skin test,

In Vietnam even “fresh” fruits are often dyed or laced in (approved or prohibited) chemicals which enhence their shelf-lives, tastes, flavors and looks. This is an additional hazard beside hazardous chemically treated (artificially flavored and colored) cooked foods [1].

When eating “fresh” fruits in Vietnam, consumers have to avoid those laced in unknown (and often harmful) chemicals.

1. Detecting color dyed fruits.

Figure 1: Cut halves of REAL, NATURAL strawberry fruits from Australia. The detailed structure of the cut fruits is almost unimmitable.

You may encounter artificially dyed fruits when eating cakes or dessert dishes (such as ice cream) sprinkled with cut pieces of strawberry fruits in Vietnam. These pieces of strawberry always have deep red color there. They are actual strawberry pieces but they have been dyed in some unknown deep red chemicals. The dye would quickly and strongly stain any adjacent piece of food such as ice cream or even a paper serviette or tissue in contact with those cut pieces of fruits.

An effective strategy for detection of dyes would be:

a/- Checking for the texture of highly colored parts of the fruit against that of known samples.

Natural colors of a fruit are made from a multitude of components, they cannot be cheaply immitated using only a few cheap, unselective (non-discriminating) dyes.

The illustrative photo of this section shows real fruits with highly detailed texture having many colors and shades. On the other hand dyed strawberry fruits in Vietnam only have an overly dark deep red color.

b/- Checking for affinity of colors toward adjacent items.

Natural components of any fruit are rarely strong dyes otherwise dye makers and users would have known that type of fruits as a source of strong dyes!

c/- Checking for the hue and brightness of the color. Natural colors are usually not very bright and not fluorescent (Chilly sauce in Vietnam often has a strong bright fluorescent red color while real chillies have no such attractive color.). When an Asian food has unusually bright colours, it may have been dyed with unapproved, unsafe industrial dyes.

d/- Always think that any unfamiliar (especially Asian) food may be poisonous and test it by checking for your allergy against it by smearing it on the inside of the elbow, on your neck, on your cheek, on the outside of your lips in that order. If no allergy reaction is found, start with consuming only a small amount of that food before eating the whole meal in the following day. (The tests may not be quite friendly to your party dresses!)

2. Practicing your fake detection skills.

When selecting fruits:

Pay attention to the look, firmness and smell of the fruit. At one time (2012) I even discovered that I had in my own fridge an innocent looking green apple which had no rot at all even after spending 6 months in that fridge (set at 5 degree C)!

See if knowledgeable locals consume those fruits from the seller.

Be wary if the seller has neither of his old nor young family members consuming those fruits.

3. Avoiding eating fruits treated by undesirable chemicals.

You can avoid eating those fruits treated by undesirable chemicals by sticking to the following guides:

a/- Bring with you or buy only fruits imported from trusted countries (having strong compliance with food regulations).

b/- Rather eat canned fruits from trusted countries than “fresh” fruits of unknown origin.

c/- Eat only local fruits grown by knowledgeable trusted locals.

References.

[1]. , https://survivaltricks.wordpress.com/2017/09/27/the-agonizing-choice-of-vietnamese-food-dishes/

Roast Chicken Edible

Roasted Chicken Artif. Coloured

[2]. https://www.naturalnews.com/2017-09-05-top-8-carcinogenic-food-additives-and-ingredients-banned-nearly-everywhere-in-the-world-except-wait-for-it-the-united-states-of-america.html

[3]. https://freespeechtwentyfirstcentury.com/2017/05/12/parasites-could-be-lurking-in-your-sushi-doctors-warn/

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Why You Should Learn to Make Your Own Cosmetics…

via: https://goodwitcheshomestead.com/2019/07/06/why-you-should-learn-to-make-your-own-cosmetics/

by Crooked Bear Creek Organic Herbs,

HOW TO MAKE SAFER CHOICES WITH COSMETICS

TOXIC INGREDIENTS IN COMMERCIAL COSMETICS

The history of cosmetic use dates back to the time of ancient civilizations, who used natural raw materials to beautify themselves by applying products that would soothe, smooth, protect, define, enrich, and refresh the body. They achieved the looks they adored by using ingredients from nature, albeit ones that they did not realize would cause adverse health effects….

Cautious use of smart phones is needed to avoid deadly candida auris infection

Cautious use of smart phones is needed to avoid deadly candida auris infection

by tonytran2015 (Melbourne, Australia).

Click here for a full, up to date ORIGINAL ARTICLE and to help fighting the stealing of readers’ traffic

#smart phone, #ear phone, #head phone, #candida auris,

A threatening mean of transmitting a deadly infection

Most smart phones are now made in China. They come equipped with ear-phones. There is now a coincidental worldwide outbreak of deadly candida auris infecting patients’ ears.

Figure: Countries with Candida auris. (Source: https://www.cdc.gov/fungal/candida-auris/tracking-c-auris.html#world)

We can see that the most affected countries are also affluent ones with high rate of smart phone usage (except for Central and South America). Is this just a coincidence?

We should suspect that the fungus may had been spread by widespread usage of earphones (and many smart phone users do actually share their earphones).

The fungus would also spread if the production facilities in China were contaminated. However this is unlikely to be the cause of the current outbreak since CDC has found that those fungi causing the current outbreak do not originate from a single common source.

References

[1]. https://vlcrain17.wordpress.com/2019/04/06/candida-auris-its-time-to-worry/

[2]. https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/06/health/candida-auris-facts.html

The rise of C. auris has been little publicized in part because it is so new. But also, outbreaks have at times been played down or kept confidential by hospitals, doctors, even governments. Some hospitals and medical professionals argue that because precautions are taken to prevent the spread, publicizing an outbreak would scare people unnecessarily.

[3]. https://www.cdc.gov/fungal/candida-auris/candida-auris-qanda.html?CDC_AA_refVal=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cdc.gov%2Ffungal%2Fdiseases%2Fcandidiasis%2Fcandida-auris-qanda.html

[4]. https://somaticresearch.home.blog/2019/04/07/candida-auris-hoax/

[5]. https://pix11.com/2019/04/09/this-drug-resistant-fungus-is-spreading-scientists-warn-of-new-superbugs-to-come/

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Pronunciation  of Written Vietnamese in former RVN

Pronunciation of Written Vietnamese in former RVN

by tonytran2015 (Melbourne, Australia).

Click here for a full, up to date ORIGINAL ARTICLE and to help fighting the stealing of readers’ traffic

#Vietnamese, #pronunciation, #IPA pronunciation, #alphabet,

Pronunciation of Written Vietnamese in former RVN (based on Standard Vietnamese used in the South, 1954-1975).

Part of the fun of traveling is understanding the local culture. This blog helps you know about written Vietnamese and pronunciate it to communicate with Vietnamese.

1. Background on written Vietnamese before Latin Phonetization

First we should have some background knowledge about some of the oldest well known systems of writing.

Egyptian hieroglyphs

Figure: Hieroglyphs from KV17, the tomb of Seti I, 13th century BC (The copyright holder of the work allows anyone to use it for any purpose including unrestricted redistribution, commercial use, and modification. Author Jon Bodsworth. Original file: http://File:Hieroglyphs_from_the_tomb_of_Seti_I.jpg)

The earliest system of Hieroglyphs of the Egyptian civilization has been found from KV17, the tomb of Seti I, 13th century BC, it has existed before 3200BC. The question is whether it had spread to ancient Vietnam directly or indirectly? Indirectly means some other civilizations may have adopted it, or imitated it and that art of adaptation/immitation may have spread to the land of current Vietnam or to the land of ancient Vietnam during the long time span from at least 3200 BC to 200 BC.

Brahmic scripts

Figure: A fragment of Ashoka’s 6th pillar edict, in Brahmi, the ancestor of all Brahmic scripts (This file is licensed under Creative Commons ShareAlike 1.0 License. Source: No machine-readable author provided. Vadakkan assumed (based on copyright claims). Original file: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Asokan_brahmi_pillar_edict.jpg)

According to https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brahmi_script there is a correspondence between North Semitic and Brahmi scripts.

Ancient writing (either orinating from Egyptian writing or independently from Indus_script of Indus_Valley (from 3300 BCE to 1300 BCE )) had spread to Ancient India as Brahmi at least since 400 BC, to Bhutan, Nepal, (Brahmic_scripts), Japan (Yes, to Japan in East Asia), , , Tibet (Tibetan_script), South East Asian nations (Malayo-Polynesian_languages, Balinese_script).

Spreading of Brahmic scripts

Figure: Spread of Brahmic family of scripts from India Figure from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brahmic_scripts,(This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 Generic license. Source: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Language_travel_from_India.png )

From the above map of the spread of Brahmic scripts, it is logical to expect that the Vietnamese civilization dated since 2000 BC could have got its own writing system comparable to its competing neighbours. It is quite unlikely that a place for trading and bronze technology like ancient Vietnam had no writing which is pivotal for its book keeping and its records of recipes for inventions .

Vietnamese culture has indeed existed more than 4000 years ago [7].

Many Vietnamese believe that Vietnam had its own phonetic writing system known as Khoa Dau (Khoa Đẩu) notation. Many centuries of occupation by Chinese ( at about 111 BC.) had erased most of the Khoa Dau writings predating Han Chinese occupation [8-14].

2. Writing of spoken Vietnamese language after Chinese Occupation

After the Occupation by Han China in 111 BC (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chinese_domination_of_Vietnam ), the use of Khoa Dau written language was banned by the occupier and Vietnamese had to use written Qin Chinese in official documents. The Vietnamese lost their ability to read their own Khoa Dau writing and had to invent Chữ Nôm as another way to write their own language.

Chữ Nôm is based on Chinese Qin writing (colloquially and unjustifiably(?) known as Han writing but it was previously standardized and made used across the whole Qin Empire by Emperor Qin Sih Huang Di). Chu Nom each has two parts, one for the meaning in Qin writing, another for the Qin character with closest pronunciation.

\nIllustrative example:
Chu Nom 𠀧 (ba “three”) is composed of the pronunciation part 巴 (Sino-Vietnamese reading: ba) and the Chinese meaning part 三 “three”.

Its use is almost like writing a fictitious new word between angled brackets in the following line

<DOG, to be read as “ch-oooo-or” at higher pitch>

for an Englishman to read the sound of the Vietnamese word <chó> meaning Dog in English.

So it is evident that to read such fictitious written language, the person has to be well versed in English. That was also the difficulty with using Chữ Nôm: The person has to be well versed in Qin language.

During the Second period of Independence from Chinese occupatiob (lasting from Vietnamese King Lê Lợi, AD 1428, to present), Vietnamese Emperor Quang Trung Hoang De decreed that all official documents had to be written in Chữ Nôm. However this requires officials to know Qin language before they can write Chu Nom in official documents!

3. Latin Phonetization of spoken Vietnamese.

Christianity spread to Vietnam in the 16 th century, with it there arose the need for phonetization of Vietnamese for teaching Christinity.

Alexander de Rhode continued with the phonetization of Vietnamese using Latin alphabets by Portuguese Jesuits preacher Francisco de Pina (1585-1625, of Guarda of Portugal) and popularized its use. There is a street in Saigon named in honour of Alexander de Rhode.

The phonetization was made in the 16 th Century but it is remarkably close to the current International Phonetic Alphabets of 2015.

4. Advantage of Latin Phonetized Vietnamese

With such phonetization (as adopted as the Official Language of Republic of Vietnam, 1956-1975) the Standard Spoken Language of RVN has been:

a- Easy to learn and read

It is common for learners to be able to pronunciate Latin phonetized Vietnamese
in three months.

In the years of 1970’s more than 90% of South Vietnamese can pronunciate that language from written Standard Vietname of RVN and even Westerners can read Vietnamese at first exposure.

b- Nationally non-ambiguous writing for various locally ambiguous pronunciations:

The Christian preachers had traveled to every corner of the country to record all different pronunciations of words and incorporated them into their written phonetized language so that the written language is fully differentiated for different written words meaning different things even when only speakers in some parts of the country can differentiate them verbally while speakers in other parts of the country cannot. The resulting written language is therefore fully differentiated for words meaning different things while individuals in the country may not be able to verbally differentiate them. Consequently everyone can unambiguously understand the written language even when he cannot verbally differentiate all different written words.

Example 1:

1. <Tro> meaning “ash”, and

2. <Cho> meaning “give, donate, or let”

are pronunciated differently by Southern Vietnamese but pronunciated indistinguishably by Northerners in remote areas. The written language is unambiguous and gives exact meaning despite the indistinguishability of the spoken words by some speakers.

The written sentence “Cho tôi mua một chay nước tro” gives unambiguos meaning nationwide while its pronunciation by Northern Vietnamese might give ambiguous meaning from “Cho tôi mua một chay nước cho”.

Example 2:
1. <Tranh> meaning “fight for”, and
2. <Chanh> meaning “lemon”
are pronunciated differently by Southern Vietnamese but pronunciated indistinguishably by Northerners from remote areas. The written language is unambiguous and gives exact meaning despite the indistinguishability of the words by some speakers.
The written sentence “Hai người tranh nhau trái chanh” gives unambiguous meaning nationwide while its pronunciation by Northern Vietnamese might give ambiguous meaning from “Hai người chanh nhau trái chanh”.

Example 3:
1. <Cá rô> meaning “Perch fish, (Perca fluviatilis)”,
2. <rỗ> meaning “woven rattan basket”
3. <giãy> meaning thrash
4. <rột rẹt> the rolling, rasping sound
are pronunciated well by most Vietnamese but pronunciated unintelligibly by Western Southerners. The written language is unambiguous and gives exact meaning despite the indistinguishability of the words by some speakers.
The written sentence “Bắt con cá rô bỏ vô rỗ nó giãy nghe rột rẹt” gives unambiguos meaning nationwide while its pronunciation by Western South Vietnamese might give unintelligible meaning from “Bắt con cá gô bỏ vô gỗ nó gãy nghe gột ghẹt” .

c- Communicable nationwide:

The reading may be more differentiating than that of local people but they do understand it and it is considered as own language by every area in the country.

5. Standard Vietnamese sounds.

The Standard Pronunciation of Vietnamese Language in Republic of Vietnam, 1956-1975 have been made based on the hearing of the pronunciation by readers on Radio and TV broadcast programs, the lyrics from songs produced during that period and from actual conversations with many many people I met from most parts of that country.

That language had been succesfully used for communiation in that country.

Here are the results of my transcription which may help future people find out the actual pronunciation of people in now defunct Republic of Vietnam (1956-1975, commonly known as South Vietnam) if they ever need to restore the language.

6. My phonetic tables of Vietnamese

Figure: Table of Vietnamese consonnants. Click to enlarge.

Figure: Table of Vietnamese vowels. Click to enlarge.

The tables are made to help Westerners pronunciate written Vietnamese and also to help with future resconstruction of the actual Standard Pronunciation of people in now defunct Republic of Vietnam (1956-1975, commonly known as South Vietnam) if they ever need to restore that language.

The tables of pronunciations have been established using the methods used by IPA.

Notes for using the tables of Vietnamese consonnants:

1/ The table here gives the Standard Pronumciation of the defunct RVN. That language is found to be still easy to read, nationally non-ambiguous writing, and communicable nationwide. The current spoken language inside Vietnam IS CLOSE TO BUT IS NOT THE SAME. The current spoken language inside Vietnam is described in the web pages

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vietnamese_language ,
https://vi.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ch%E1%BB%AF_Qu%E1%BB%91c_ng%E1%BB%AF,

There will be CONFLICTING informations on the pronunciations between those two websites and this website. It is UP TO THE USER TO SELECT THE METHOD OF LEARNING PRONUNCIATION most appropriate to him.

2/ The Phonetic Transcriptions can never be identical for different speakers even from the same village! Therefore phonetizers should be satisfied that his phonetization is acceptable when reproduction from his phonetization is easily recognized and readily accepted by all listeners.

3/ Here I tried to use best approximate familiar IPA symbols [18]. Otherwise there will be a proliferation of IPA symbols and that would defeat the main aim of phonetization symbols !

4/ There are three columns in this table. The first column represents the Vietnamese single or double or triple consonnants, the second the corresponding IPA notation for Standard Northern pronunciation, the third the corresponding IPA notation for acceptable Standard Southern pronunciation. Radio and television announcers and speakers and singers in the former RVN adhered to this standard and were understood and appreciated nationwide.

5/ The Vietnamese <ch> is given its IPA phonetizations as in the table.
I approximated the pronunciation for <ch> by Southerners by English “ch” as in “chat, church, chunk” in English.
The actual pronunciation by Southerners is [j] preceed by a [t] . However there is no IPA phonetization symbol such as [tj with a ligation on top]. So I have to choose the closest familiar IPA phonetization symbol which is for as “ch” in “chat, church, chunk” in English.
I do RECOMMEND foreigners to read Vietnamese <ch> as “ch” in “church” in English, such pronuciation is understood nationwide.

It is known among Vietnamese speakers that saying the word <cho> make the tongue flap from its initial position with its tip touching the back of the upper front gum to the final position with its tip resting on its lowest position behind the back of the rear of the lower front gum. On the other hand the tip of the tongue stay touching the back of the upper front gum when pronunciating “ch” in English.

6/ There are differences between <c>, <k>, and <q> in Latin Phonetization.
<c>, and <q> are at two ends of the variation with <k> being the middle.
Natives Vietnamese words beginning with <q> have only those beginning with <qu>. However words like Qatar, Qibla do appear in Vietnamese news.

Example 1:

Pronunciate “com tôm” and “Kon-Tum” and feel the positions of the point of articulation.

Pronunciate “con cá, con cua” and “con két, con kiển” and feel the positions of the point of articulation.

Pronunciate “cá cơm” and “cá kèo” and feel the positions of the point of articulation.

Pronunciate “cua” and “qua” and feel the positions of the point of articulation.

Pronunciate “cuốc” and “quốc” and feel the positions of the point of articulation.

7/- The Vietnamese consonnant <d> is pronounced by Southerners as IPA [j] while by Northerners as as [z] quickly changing to [j] (If an IPA notation is made for that way of pronunciation, it would be [zj with ligation on top]) or as [dz with ligation on top].

It is noted that there have been disputes on how to accurately represent some Vietnamese spoken words like one which have been commonly written as <du> :

Some Northerners had successfully had their names registered in Vietnamese as “Dzu” rather than “Du” prior to 1975 (The laws of RVN required that people names must be Vietnamese words.). Their arguments were that Standard Vietnamese word <du> phonetically would be read by some as IPA [ju] or as IPA [zj u] while their name should always be read as IPA [dz u].

Notes for using the tables of Vietnamese vowels:

1/ The table here gives the Standard Pronumciation of the defunct RVN. That language is found to be still easy to read, nationally non-ambiguous writing, and communicable nationwide. The current spoken language inside Vietnam IS CLOSE TO BUT IS NOT THE SAME. The current spoken language inside Vietnam is described in the web pages

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vietnamese_language,
https://vi.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ch%E1%BB%AF_Qu%E1%BB%91c_ng%E1%BB%AF,

There will be CONFLICTING informations on the pronunciations between those two websites and this website. It is UP TO THE USER TO SELECT THE METHOD OF LEARNING PRONUNCIATION most appropriate to him.

2/ The Phonetic Transcriptions can never be identical for different speakers even from the same village! Therefore phonetizers should be satisfied that his phonetization is acceptable when reproduction from his phonetization is easily recognized and readily accepted by all listeners.

3/ Here I tried to use best approximate familiar IPA symbols. Otherwise there will be a proliferation of IPA symbols and that would defeat the main aim of phonetization symbols !

4/ There are twelve principal Vietnamese vowels (sound which can be sustainly pronunciated):
a, ă, â, e, ê, i, o, ô, ơ, u, ư, y
Vietnamese <y> is ALWAYS A VOWEL, it never takes the role of semi-vowel [j] unlike English “y” (in English “yes”) or French “y” (in “il y a”).

5/ They are grouped into six groups based on six Latin vowels a, e, i, o, u, y. The original phonetizers considered that (a, ă, â) are closely related and similarly for (e, ê), (o, ô), (u, ư).

6/ <i> differs from <y>: The sound for Vietnamese <y> is similar to IPA [i] or IPA [i:] but made with the point of articulation closer to the throat than for [i:].
IPA [i] is pronunciated with the tip of the tongue nearly touching the gap between the upper and lower front teeth while Vietnamese <y> is pronunciated with the tip of the tongue lowered and withdrawn to behind the back of the lower front gum.

Example 1:
Pronunciate <i> as in IPA [i] and “y” as in “y tá” and feel the positions of the tongue and the point of articulation.
Pronunciate “ĩ” as in “bĩ cực” and “ỹ” as in “mỹ” and feel the positions of the tongue tongue and the point of articulation .
Pronunciate “i” as in “mì hoành thánh” and “y” as in “mỹ” and feel the positions of the tongue.
Pronunciate “iến” as in “tiến” and “yến” and feel the positions of the tongue.
Pronunciate “iết” as in “tiết” and “yết” as in “yết kiêu” and feel the positions of the tongue.
Pronunciate “iếu” as in “hiếu” and “yếu” as in “yếu tố” and feel the positions of the tongue.

Example 2:
Pronunciate “mái nhà” and “máy móc” and feel the positions of the tongue.
Pronunciate “cài đặt” and “cày bừa” and feel the positions of the tongue.
Pronunciate “thúi” and “thúy” and feel the positions of the tongue.

7/ Vietnamese <ô> is closer to IPA [õ] than IPA [o]. The IPA symbol for a nasal vowel is a tilde ~ over the corresponding oral vowel.
IPA [o] is like “eau” in French “beau” https://www.thoughtco.com/understanding-the-french-language-using-ipa-4080307

8/ Vietnamese <â> is closer to IPA [ʌ with a tilde] than IPA [ʌ]. The IPA symbol for a nasal vowel is a tilde ~ over the corresponding oral vowel.
IPA [ʌ] is like English “cut” https://www.antimoon.com/how/pronunc-soundsipa.htm

9/ Vietnamese <ư> is pronounced like IPA [U] but with the point of articulation moved to the back. The speaker can first pronunciate IPA [U] then move his point of articulation back to the throat to hear the sound of Vietnamese <ư>

References

[1].

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Egyptian_hieroglyphs

[2[. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brahmic_scripts/

[3]. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brahmi_script

[4]. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tibetan_script

[5]. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Malayo-Polynesian_languages

[6]. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Balinese_script

[7]. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hoabinhian

[8]. https://chuvietcolacviet.vn/gocbaochi/detail/chu-viet-co-chu-cua-nen-van-minh-ruc-ro-ky-4-62.html

[9]. https://taobabe.wordpress.com/tag/ancient-language/

[10]. http://chuvietcolacviet.vn/gocbaochi/detail/giai-ma-chu-viet-co-127.html

[11] https://www.sachhiem.net/VANHOC/TVHAC/Vanhac09.php

[12]. http://chuvietcolacviet.vn/nghiencuu/detail/hanh-trinh-di-tim-chu-khoa-dau-phan-1-307.html

[13]. https://kienthuc.net.vn/di-san/su-ton-tai-cua-nen-van-minh-khoa-dau-266446.html

[14]. http://chuaxaloi.vn/tin-tuc/van-de-chu-khoa-dau/921.html

[15]. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ch%E1%BB%AF_N%C3%B4m

[16]. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vietnamese_language

[17]. https://vi.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ch%E1%BB%AF_Qu%E1%BB%91c_ng%E1%BB%AF

[18]. https://www.internationalphoneticalphabet.org/ipa-sounds/ipa-chart-with-sounds/

[19]. https://www.antimoon.com/how/pronunc-soundsipa.htm

[20]. https://www.thoughtco.com/understanding-the-french-language-using-ipa-4080307

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