A Vietnamese name for our son

Following is an email letter from a former class participant of Vietnam Language Centre in Singapore:


Dear Teacher Huy,

I hope this email finds you well and that you have had a fruitful 2011 so far.

I am writing to request for some help.

My Vietnamese husband (D) and I are expecting our first child due in January 2012.

D’ parents have left it entirely to us to decide on a Vietnamese name for our son  (M).

But we are having a bit of difficulty so we thought to seek some help and advice from you.

I have selected some possible Chinese names for M and tried to search for the direct Vietnamese translation online like how you did for my name when I was in your Vietnamese class.

But the Vietnamese translation was not available for all the Chinese characters.

As for those that were available, D said that they sounded strange as Vietnamese names.

Would you be able to suggest some names for M based on the Chinese names we have in the list as follows:

Alternatively, apart from a direct translation, are there other Vietnamese words that embody the same virtues/values that the Chinese names represent?

I am particularly inclined towards the character Kai (凯), which represents victory, Zhe (哲) for wisdom and En (恩) for grace, kindness and mercy.

Let us know your thoughts?

Any help you can render will be most appreciated!

Thank you and have a blessed 2012 ahead!

Yours sincerely,



Reply from Teacher Lê Hữu Huy of Vietnam Language Centre:


Dear M.,

I am so happy to receive your mail.

Following is the Vietnamese translation of names in your list:

1. Lê Ân

2. Lê Khiêm

3. Lê Cần

4. Lê Hy (Hy : hy vọng / hope)

5. Lê Khê

6. Lê Tịch

7. Lê Tín

8. Lê Triết

9. Lê Khải Đức

10. Lê Khải Ân

11. Lê Khải Hy

(Hy: trong sáng, hưng thịnh, bao dung => tên vua KHANG HY nhà Thanh )

(Hy: bright, splendid, glorious => name of Emperor Kang Xi)

12. Lê Khải Tín

13. Lê Khải Triết

14. Lê Cần Ân

After consulting the list with a few Vietnamese friends of mine, I think Lê Khải Hy is unique and should be a great name.

With all my best for the New Year 2012.

Lê Hữu Huy


 A thank-you note from M:


Chào thầy Huy,

Thank you for your reply.

We were most delighted to receive your email as it certainly helped to clarify a lot of our doubts.

After much deliberation, D and I have decided to heed your advice and name our son:


When he is older, I’ll definitely let him know that my Vietnamese teacher helped to name him!

Once again, thank you for your help.

It is deeply appreciated.

Kính mến,




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