100 Vietnamese Last Names With Meanings And History

A Vietnamese family name could make your character more interesting and stand out more.
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Naming your character is a big ordeal because you want the name to be unique and meaningful.

Apart from a unique name, have you ever thought of unique last names? Well, in Vietnamese culture, a name considers three parts: first name, middle name, and last name or family name.

People in Vietnam started using a family name after China conquered Vietnam. The naming culture earlier included family names first and then the middle name. After the Chinese conquered Vietnam, Vietnamese people started using last names. About 100 family names are being used in Vietnamese culture. Although there are three religions, Buddhism, Taoism and Confucianism in the country, the people of Vietnam give more importance to tradition and culture rather than to religion. It is one of the least religious countries in the world. Hence, Vietnamese names are not religious. They are suitable for all. You can choose any name that you like and that you think will suit your character the most. Thus, to help you in your quest, we have categorized Vietnamese last names based on ancientness, popularity, and uniqueness.

For more last names, take a look at Thai Last Names and Nigerian Last Names.

Popular Vietnam Last Names

Some of the last names in Vietnam were very common, and about 40 percent of the Vietnamese population would use it. Nguyen was one of the famous last names, and many people tend to use it. Even Tran and Thong were some of the popular last names in Vietnam. Thus, we have created a list of family names that people love and are commonly used in Vietnam.

1. Au ( Vietnamese origin) last name meaning "stream" or "water meadow."

2. Bui (Belgian and Dutch origin) has name variant Bois.

3. Can (French origin) meaning "hound."

4. Chau (Vietnamese origin) middle name and last names with variants like Chow.

5. Dan (Hebrew origin) last names meaning "God is my judge."

6. Dau (Dutch origin) last name meaning "custom" or "tradition."

7. Dinh is one of the popular Vietnamese family names.

8. Don (English, and Vietnamese) origin, meaning "ruler of the world."

9. Hai (Muslim and Vietnamese origin) meaning "living," "vivid," or "alive."

10. Khong is a popular last name originated from Cambodia.

11. Khuu is one of the most common Vietnamese origin family names.

12. Kien (Dutch origin) is a Vietnam given name with variants like Kuhn.

13. Kieu  (Vietnamese origin) given name is used as a family name.

14. Ky (Irish and Vietnamese origin) and the last name means "lovely."

15. La is one of the popular Vietnamese origin family names.

16. Lieu (Vietnamese origin) given name meaning "willow tree."

17. Luong is one of the commonly used family names in Vietnam.

18. Mac (Scottish origin) and commonly used last name meaning "greatest" or "charming."

19. Nghiem is a common last name in Vietnamese culture.

20. Ngo is a Vietnam family name and is a variant of Ao.

21. Ngu (Vietnamese origin) is one of the common given names.

22. Nguy is one of the commonly used Chinese family names and is a variant of Nguyen.

23. Nhan is a Vietnamese origin last name and can be used as a middle name too.

24. On (Chinese and Vietnamese origin) meaning "peace."

25. Pham is one of the popularly used Vietnamese origin family names after Nguyen.

26. Phong was commonly used as the last name in Vietnam.

27. Quach is one of the commonly used last names and family names in Vietnamese culture.

28. Thai is a popular Vietnamese origin last name that means "multiple."

29. Than (Vietnamese origin) common family name meaning "brilliant,"  or "million."

30. Thi is one of Vietnamese and Asian origin last names meaning "poetry."

31. Thong (Chinese origin) meaning "smart."

32. Tiaen is a region that existed during Xia dynasty and is a Chinese origin middle name.

33. Tien (Greek origin) meaning "fairy" or "crowned in laurel."

34. Tran is a popular family name after Nguyen and is of Scottish origin.

35. Trieu is one of the common Vietnamese origin's last names.

36. Troung is a commonly used Vietnamese last name and middle name.

37. Vang (Scandinavian origin) meaning "meadow" or "field."

38. Vinh is a Vietnamese origin common last name.

39. Vong is one of the  Swedish origin common names.

40. Vuong is one of the popularly used Vietnamese last names after Nguyen.

Unique Vietnam Last Names

Vietnam has an interesting history and there are many different countries whose languages influence the last names of the Vietnamese people today.

Until the 20th century, the people did not have surnames. They would identify themselves through parent-given names or through the family names. Vietnamese people followed the pattern of Western European of the given name and family name. Vietnamese middle names are unique and give positive attributes. Although Nguyen became a popularly used last name, some surnames were unique and limited to a few people. We have created a list of unique Vietnamese names.

41. Banh is Vietnamese names and is one of the unique family names.

42. Bien is a Jewish origin family name is an occupational name for "beekeeper."

43. Cam (Czech origin) is a habitation name from Caen, meaning "bent nose."

44. Chan (Portuguese origin) meaning "level" or "flat."

45. Chiem is one of the unique family of Vietnamese names.

46. Chuong is one of the rarely used Vietnamese names.

47. Dam (Vietnamese origin) is one of the rare last names and after some living near a pond.

48. Diep is one of the different Vietnamese names and is a common family name.

49. Dieu is a unique family name in Vietnamese culture.

50. Do (Korean origin) meaning "gift of God" and is a variant of Du or To.

51. Giang is one of the unique last names in Vietnamese culture.

52. Ho (Chinese and Vietnamese origin) has a name variant He meaning "good."

53. Huynh is one of the unique last names of Vietnamese origin.

54. Kha is a Vietnamese origin family name.  

55. Lac is one of the rare Vietnamese last names.

56. Lam (Danish origin) meaning "full understanding" or "knowledge."

57. Lavan (Jewish origin) meaning "white."

58. Luu is one of the rarely used last names in Vietnam.

59. Ly (Chinese origin) meaning "glade" and "reason."

60. Minh (Cambodian origin) and is one of the popularly used last names.

61. Nzuyen (Vietnamese origin) given name and is a variant of Nguyen.

62. Ong (English, Vietnamese, and Filipino origin) with a name variant Wang.

63. Phan is one of the unique last names used in Vietnamese culture.

64. Phang is one of Vietnamese and Cambodian originated last names.

65. Pho is one of the rare Cambodian originated last names with a variant Phu.

66. Phung is one of the Vietnamese origin's last names.

67. Phuong is a Southeast Asian origin name meaning "destiny."

68. Quang is a rare Vietnamese origin last name.

69. Ta is one of the Vietnamese origin's last names.

70. Tat is a Vietnamese origin name meaning "cheerful" or "bringer of joy."

71. Thach is a Cambodian origin name and is a variant of Thatch.

72. Tham is one of the Vietnamese origin names meaning "famous."

73. Thang is of Cambodian origin name and is a rare surname used in Vietnam.

74. Thanh is one of the Vietnamese origin's last names.

75. Trach is a Vietnamese origin name and is a variant of "Drach."

76. Tram is a Vietnamese name.

77. Trinh is a Vietnamese origin last name, meaning "pure."

78. Troung is a Vietnamese origin last name.

79. To is Korean originated name and is an ancient surname.

80. Vien is a Vietnamese name and has a name variant Vivianus.

81. Vo is one of the rare Vietnamese origin's last names.

Ancient Vietnam Names

The rich history of Vietnam states that the people existed in Vietnam from the Palaeolithic age. That means that a few last names are very old and have a story behind it. A few popular Vietnamese names are named after an emperor, kingdom, prime minister, particular dynasty, and some ruler.  We have created a list of such popularly used common names inspired by historical events.

82. Ba (Chinese origin) is from the kingdom of Ba (Zhou dynasty), meaning "father."

83. Bi (Chinese origin) from the Han dynasty and the name means "finish."

84. Bo (Chinese origin )and is after the town granted to Shen Nong, and meaning "thin" or "slim."

85. Cao (Chinese origin) was the great-grandson of emperor "Zhuan Xu."

86. Che (Chinese origin) meaning "cart" and is after a Prime Minister.

87. Cong is an ancient Chinese name that means "intelligent."

88. Dai (Japanese origin) is an ancient name after a Chinese state meaning "great" or "big."

89. Dang is a Chinese origin name after a ruling family in the Zhou dynasty.

90. Dong is an ancient last name from the 23rd century.

91. Hai is an ancient Chinese name after the name of a senior minister meaning "ocean."

92. Hang is a rare surname used in Vietnam and originated from China after the Song dynasty.

93. Lai is an ancient Chinese origin and is used as a surname in the ruling class.

94. Lang (Chinese origin) is after Lang city, and it means "tall one."

95. Mai is the surname after an ancient Chinese character in Guangdong provinces.

96. Nguyen has popularly used the last name after the prominent Vietnamese royal dynasty.

97. Su is a Chinese originated ancient surname after the emperor Zuhan Xu.

98. Tang is the Chinese origin last name and is after the prince of Shang Cheng Tang.

99. Tian (Chinese origin) and the surname was adopted by people who lived in Tian.

100. Tron is a French origin named after a saint born in the seventh century.

Kidadl has lots of great names articles to inspire you. If you liked our suggestions for Vietnamese Last Names then why not take a look at Norwegian Last Names, or for something different take a look at Last Names That Start With K.

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