Oriolidae (Chim Vàng Anh)

The Vietnamese name for the oriole in ornithological usage is Chim vàng anh, where vàng means ‘yellow’ andanh means ‘oriole’. Vàng anh is ultimately from Chinese 黃鶯 huáng yīng ‘yellow-oriole’, although it is a well assimilated form and more likely to be perceived as Vietnamese than Chinese. The Vietnamese word order Chim anh vàng also exists.

Oriolidae (Chim Vàng Anh)

A more orthodox reading of the Chinese characters 黃鶯, and probably a more recent borrowing, is hoàng oanh, which is a second major name for the oriole. 鶯 yīng by itself traditionally refers to the oriole in Chinese, and plain Chim oanh also means ‘oriole’ in Vietnamese. The mixed form Chim hoàng anh, combining hoàng (from Chinese 黃 huáng ’yellow’) with the earlier borrowing anh, is also used.

In what appears to be a modern development, oanh is extended to cover the robins and leiothrixes, which, like orioles, are noted for their song. The Chinese word 鶯 yīng in modern times is technically used for the Sylviidae, and under the influence of Chinese usage attempts may also be seen to extend oanh to the warblers.

The Chinese name 黃鸝 huáng lí ’yellow-oriole’ has been borrowed into Vietnamese as Chim hoàng ly.

Another name is Thương canh, the Vietnamese reading of Chinese 倉庚 cānggēng – yet another Chinese name for the oriole. This may also be found in the form Canh.

Chim choắt chòe (with the alternative form Chim chúyt chòe) is a Vietnamese name for the oriole. It may be related to Chim chích chòe, which is the name of the Magpie Robins and Forktails. Choắt by itself usually means ’tiny’.

The above may be summarised as follows:

  • Chim vàng anh ‘yellow oriole (bird)’ (Chinese word order, adjective plus noun)
  • Chim anh vàng ‘yellow oriole (bird)’ (Vietnamese word order, noun plus adjective)
  • Chim hoàng anh ‘yellow oriole bird’ (hoàng is from Chinese 黃 huáng ‘yellow’)
  • Chim hoàng oanh ‘yellow oriole bird’ (from Chinese 黃鶯 huáng yīng ‘yellow oriole’)
  • Chim oanh ‘oriole bird’ (oanh is from Chinese 鶯 yīng ‘oriole’)
  • Chim hoàng ly (from Chinese 黃鸝 huáng lí ‘yellow oriole’)
  • Chim choắt chòe (cf chích chòe Magpie Robin, Forktail. choắt = ‘tiny’)
  • Chim chúyt chòe (variant of the above)
  • Thương canh (from Chinese 倉庚 cānggēng)
  • Canh (from the above)

The Maroon Oriole has been given the name Tử anh, where tử appears to be from Chinese 紫 zǐ meaning ’purple’.

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