Nguyen is a single syllable (as are all Vietnamese words) but *sounds* like two because of the rising/falling tone. So, in Northern accent, it is pronounced like nguien (one syllable). But in Southern accent, ê is usually silent, and the ending –n is more like -ng.
Why do so many Vietnamese have the last name Nguyen?
In 19th century, Vietnam was a territory of the French. The French had a large scale population investigation during that period and faced a huge challenge which was that many Vietnamese people didn’t have a correct last name. So the French decided to give those people a last name, and they chose Nguyen.
How do you pronounce Nguyen Reddit?
It sounds just like gwen, except that when you say “gwen”, the back of your tongue is on the roof of your mouth. When you say “nguyen“, the back of your tongue touches your mouth deep in your throat, almost at your uvula.
David Nilsen is the former editor of Fourth & Sycamore. He is a member of the National Book Critics Circle. You can find more of his writing on his website at davidnilsenwriter.com and follow him on Twitter as @NilsenDavid.