The Vietnamese word for color is màu. Sometimes, you would also hear its related word màu sắc, which can, in many cases, be used as the equivalent of màu. However, màu sắc also subtly implies the general look-and-feel of the item as a result of its color.
Below are the various ways you can use to enquire about colors. For each question, you would see the literal mappings to English.
|Màu yêu thích của bạn||là gì?|
|Your favorite color||is what?|
|Bạn||thích||cái váy||(có) màu gì?|
|You||like||the dress||(has) what color?|
|Quần jean của anh ta||(có) màu gì?|
|His jeans||(has) what color?|
If you need an explanation on why your favorite color is translated into Màu yêu thích của bạn in Vietnamese, you can take a look at the tutorial on how to say my, your, etc in Vietnamese.
In the last 2 examples, màu acts as if it were a verb: cái váy màu gì?. This can be explained by saying that the word có, which means have in English, is being omitted. You can ask with or without the word có, but most people would omit it.
Ask about the color of an item
[Item] + màu gì?
The following table shows you how to say various colors in Vietnamese
|blue: xanh dương
(also: xanh da trời)
|green: xanh lá cây||red: đỏ||purple: tím|
|yellow: vàng||orange: (da) cam||brown: đà (also: nâu)||black: đen|
|pink: hồng||white: trắng||grey: xám|
The only point you need to note is that xanh is a generic color word that can refer to either blue or green. So saying xanh is ambiguous without the context. The word for blue in Vietnamese is xanh dương or xanh da trời, refering to the color of the sky. Green in Vietnamese is xanh lá cây, literally refer to the color of leaves.
Having learned the color words in Vietnamese, we can now answer the questions about color in the first section.
Question: Màu yêu thích của bạn là gì?
Answer: Màu yêu thích của tôi là màu xanh da trời
Question: Bạn thích cái váy màu gì?
Answer: Tôi thích cái váy màu hồng
Question: Quần jean của anh ta (có) màu gì?
Answer: Quần jean của anh ta màu xám.
Saying the color of an item
[Item] + màu + [Name of the color]
To refer to a color as a noun, you would use màu + [Name of the color] such as đỏ/xanh/vàng, etc. However, when the color is used as an adjective, màu is often, but not always, omitted.
|cái áo sơ mi đỏ||trông rất đẹp|
|the red shirt||looks very nice|
|Cái khăn choàng xám||rất hợp với em|
|The grey scarf||suits you nicely|
- The word for color in Vietnamese is màu. Names of various colors in Vietnamese are given in the Color Table.
- To about the color of an item: [Item] + màu gì?
- To tell the color of an item: [Item] + màu + [Name of the color]
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