Vietnamese Accents

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Re: Vietnamese Accents

Postby mafke » 2010-12-18, 6:43

ThumbsUp wrote:The Southern "hỏi" tone is not identical to either hỏi or ngã in the North, but it's more similar to hỏi.


That was definitely my perception, that i's kind of like a drawn out exaggerated hoi (often with a little constriction but nothing like nga).

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Re: Vietnamese Accents

Postby ThumbsUp » 2010-12-18, 6:58

Draven wrote:
ThumbsUp wrote:Southerners however can't say hỏi at all. Ngã doesn't have to be creaky, it can be wavy but one thing you'll notice is it goes up down and up. It can even go down crackle and down (heard in central).

Then how can you call those "non-creaky ngã tones" ngã at all? The "definition" ngã is creaky-rising or breaking-rising. A glottal constriction is involved somewhere in there.

ThumbsUp wrote:The wavy ngã with no creakiness gives an illusion of hỏi but hỏi is a different type of tone generally softer. [...] I can guarantee that southerners can't sound out hỏi. [...] I think the diacritics work well to explain them too. ~ shows it going like a wave, ? shows it in a smoothe motion downwards and then steady.

Hỏi is defined as the dipping-rising tone, and it's quite low in pitch. That's how Southerners say it. You can hear that clearly in my sample speech - notice the pitch. Ngã, as said in the north, is noticeably higher. There can be no "illusion" about it. And I wouldn't count "waviness" as the defining factor, because both hỏi and ngã are wavy.

So let's sum it up - if the Southern hỏi/ngã/whatever is defined as: quite low in pitch, dipping then rising and not creaky, then shouldn't that be closer to the Northern hỏi (pictured below)? So let's call it hỏi then. Regional variations of Vietnamese don't even strictly correspond to each other in tones, are you aware of that?

Image

Also, you can read the table of pitch correspondences here. The Southern "hỏi" tone is not identical to either hỏi or ngã in the North, but it's more similar to hỏi. So, for the sake of simplicity, let's call it "hỏi". And that's how it's generally perceived by people in Vietnam - as a type of "hỏi".

This is one of the links you posted: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ph9ry5MJ3pQ - the host is from Vĩnh Long, a province in the Mekong delta. You hear any ngã in their speech? Seriously?

The inability to pronounce the ngã tone is one of the most (in)famous things about Southerners. One wouldn't argue about that if he lives in Vietnam. :? You're the first person I've ever heard likening the Southern hỏi tone to the Northern ngã tone.


That video is clearly ngã, seriously. Listen at the way they say sĩ, giả as giã, gặp gỡ. The way they say the three is all the same tone which is ngã. You hear that in northern too when they say ngã tones. Ngã in the south is typically elongated or exaggerated while northerners like to keep theirs short.

Hỏi tone is one of the reasons why northerners sound so different from southerners. Everytime they say phải, thẳng, cả, nửa, buổi, etc. Clearly sounds different from how we approach that tone. And thats how you'd know we can't pronounce ? because we pronounce those tones differently from how they say it but it sounds similar to how they pronounce ~ words. Just compare the two accents in the videos or any other videos you can find. It'd be clearly obvious.

Also if you know how to pronounce both you'd know right away which one southerners can't pronounce.

The picture you showed explained my explanations more clearly. The ngã is shown starting off going up, cut off and goes up even more like a hiccup. But, a lot of southerners pronounce it that way without cutting it off. Meaning they just wave it down and back up even more. Also notice how the ngã tone stops.

The hỏi tone isn't wavy but more like bending but it stays continuous and actually breathily fades and don't just stop. That bend in the picture is what I meant when I said circular. Cause it starts off at a certain level bends and comes back to the same level.

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Re: Vietnamese Accents

Postby ThumbsUp » 2010-12-18, 7:07

Even more obvious:
Tone Pronunciation
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NEMP8JCL-HQ
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DwyjVql1sdg
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lGm2B_mhd38
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e6S2CN1R ... re=related
Southern

Notice how all these videos ngã and hỏi are pronounced the same. They even made it clearly ngã by making the creakiness more noticeable.

Compare to the differentiation of hỏi and ngã in this one:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vYSMvX5f5VQ
Northern

The southern hỏi and ngã definitely sounds like northern ngã and not hỏi.

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Re: Vietnamese Accents

Postby Tenebrarum » 2010-12-18, 7:36

ThumbsUp wrote:And thats how you'd know we can't pronounce ? because we pronounce those tones differently from how they say it but it sounds similar to how they pronounce ~ words.

How is ˨˩˦ (214) more similar to ˧ʔ˥ (3ʔ5) than to ˧˩˧̰ (31̰3)????

ThumbsUp wrote:The ngã is shown starting off going up, cut off and goes up even more like a hiccup. But, a lot of southerners pronounce it that way without cutting it off. Meaning they just wave it down and back up even more.

Going up and up without a glottal break, only slight pitch fluctuation? That would result in a high tone, much like sắc.

ThumbsUp wrote:The hỏi tone isn't wavy but more like bending but it stays continuous and actually breathily fades and don't just stop. That bend in the picture is what I meant when I said circular. Cause it starts off at a certain level bends and comes back to the same level.

You're looking at the Northern hỏi tone, which is 3-1-3 and ends up where it begins. But remember the Southern one is 2-1-4, which is more like a composite of huyền and sắc - "huyền-then-sắc", to be precise. So "ả" would sound like a quick à-á.

ThumbsUp wrote:Also if you know how to pronounce both you'd know right away which one southerners can't pronounce.

Actually southerners can't pronounce any of them, but the merged tone is realized as "hỏi" - and that's how it sounds to me too - similar to the Northern hỏi. Have you carefully read what I wrote?

I remember, in primary school, my little group of friends had a competition to see who could pronounce ngã "correctly like Northerners do, and not like hỏi". Nobody in the judge panel spoke the Northern dialect enough to judge, but somehow I ended up winning. :P So yes, we identify our merged tone with hỏi, not with ngã.

ThumbsUp wrote:That video is clearly ngã, seriously.

I guess your perception works differently than most people in Vietnam then.
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Re: Vietnamese Accents

Postby ThumbsUp » 2010-12-18, 8:08

Draven wrote:
ThumbsUp wrote:And thats how you'd know we can't pronounce ? because we pronounce those tones differently from how they say it but it sounds similar to how they pronounce ~ words.

How is ˨˩˦ (214) more similar to ˧ʔ˥ (3ʔ5) than to ˧˩˧̰ (31̰3)????

ThumbsUp wrote:The ngã is shown starting off going up, cut off and goes up even more like a hiccup. But, a lot of southerners pronounce it that way without cutting it off. Meaning they just wave it down and back up even more.

Going up and up without a glottal break, only slight pitch fluctuation? That would result in a high tone, much like sắc.

ThumbsUp wrote:The hỏi tone isn't wavy but more like bending but it stays continuous and actually breathily fades and don't just stop. That bend in the picture is what I meant when I said circular. Cause it starts off at a certain level bends and comes back to the same level.

You're looking at the Northern hỏi tone, which is 3-1-3 and ends up where it begins. But remember the Southern one is 2-1-4, which is more like a composite of huyền and sắc - "huyền-then-sắc", to be precise. So "ả" would sound like a quick à-á.

ThumbsUp wrote:Also if you know how to pronounce both you'd know right away which one southerners can't pronounce.

Actually southerners can't pronounce any of them, but the merged tone is realized as "hỏi". Have you carefully read what I wrote?

ThumbsUp wrote:That video is clearly ngã, seriously.

I guess your perception works differently than most people in Vietnam then.


No. Northerners think the same as me too. Only some southerners that haven't been exposed to the difference think it's ?.

lol. Here I actually went out and made a quick video to show you the different approaches to the two tones and I even pronounced ngả so you can see the difference between ngã and ngả (or ngã & hỏi tones). http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AYxqmqizqUs

The wavy Ngã is possibly the one you're mistaking for hỏi because it's a continuous flow. Only thing is it goes up slightly down and up even more without creakiness or crackle. Just like in the picture you posted. You see how the ngã is shown going up, cut of (creaky) goes down slightly and goes up even more? That's what I mean by wavy. Notice the hỏi is just a bend in sound.

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Re: Vietnamese Accents

Postby Tenebrarum » 2010-12-18, 8:30

ThumbsUp wrote:Northerners think the same as me too. Only some southerners that haven't been exposed to the difference think it's ?.

I am exposed to both Northern hỏi and ngã through my mother's accent, and yet I still identify it with hỏi. My old classmates from the North even said Southerners can't manage ngã.

If there are objective bystanders like mafke who feel that way, then you surely can't invalidate that view either.

ThumbsUp wrote:Here I actually went out and made a quick video to show you the different approaches to the two tones.

The "wavy ngã" in your vid is just straight-on Southern merged tone. Do you notice its pitch is much closer to Northern hỏi? You simply happen to identify it with ngã.

Have you ever heard any Northerner say the ngã tone without the creakiness for comparison? Would be impossible to find I guess.

You're doing an excellent job in that clip btw. :) (But I'm not sure the short Northern ngả is correct; I'll let abcdefg verify that). To me the three tones sound distinct but the southern one and northern hỏi still sound more alike.
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Re: Vietnamese Accents

Postby ThumbsUp » 2010-12-18, 8:50

Draven wrote:
ThumbsUp wrote:Northerners think the same as me too. Only some southerners that haven't been exposed to the difference think it's ?.

I am exposed to both Northern hỏi and ngã through my mother's accent, and yet I still identify it with hỏi. My old classmates from the North even said Southerners can't manage ngã.

If there are objective bystanders like mafke who feels that way, then you surely can't invalidate that view either.

ThumbsUp wrote:Here I actually went out and made a quick video to show you the different approaches to the two tones.

The "wavy ngã" in your vid is just straight-on Southern merged tone. Do you notice its pitch is much closer to Northern hỏi? You simply happen to identify it with ngã.

Have you ever heard any Northerner say the ngã tone without the creakiness for comparison? Would be impossible to find I guess.

You're doing an excellent job in that clip btw. :) (But I'm not sure the short Northern ngả is correct; I'll let abcdefg verify that). To me the three tones sound distinct but the southern one and northern hỏi still sound more alike.


It only sounds alike to you because the wavy nga is one flow and not 2 because there's no creakiness. But what it shares with the other nga approaches is that it starts off at a pitch but ends up higher in the end. Hoi is different in that its one pitch bending down and coming back to same level of pitch. And that's only when hoi is stressed. The regular hoi, which you can hear in all the northern clips I post is like how the first hoi is pronounced in my clip, quick soft bend and fade.

I'm pretty sure it's nga we pronounce because all the other southerners trying to teach Vietnamese tones pronounce nga and hoi with creakiness. Listen to how the 2nd ngả in the clip starts "straight" bends down and back straight and not up like the wavy nga. Another difference between the two is how nga always suddenly stop in sound, whereas the hoi just fades whether it be normal or stressed.

Of course they do, but northerners shorten it's length, which is why northerners speak so fast.

Don't tell me you're a southerner and you never creak or crackle your nga. That's just too weird.

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Re: Vietnamese Accents

Postby abcdefg » 2010-12-18, 12:30

Well.. your shortened Ngã sounds weird to me. Even if I speak really fast, the word still has its 'tail'.. I mean it wouldn't end so suddenly. It sounds to me like it was half-way to sắc.

And yes my ngã has a glottal stop amidst.

@Draven: I do notice a little difference between the two tones, but it's really not much.
To me it sounds like it's merged by northern hỏi and ngã, well a little bit away from ngã but still closer to it. Maybe a bit softer, I think.

The 'Southerner can't produce ngã' is probably true. I met this girl from SG, and her ngã is like ngá to me.. Uhm, but she also claims Southerners merge ngã into hỏi.

Actually I'm confused lol. If her ngã is like ngả and her ngả is like ngã, I feel like my world upside down. But everyone is right, right? ..
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Re: Vietnamese Accents

Postby Tenebrarum » 2010-12-18, 15:23

ThumbsUp wrote:It only sounds alike to you because the wavy nga is one flow and not 2 because there's no creakiness.

No creakiness = not similar to ngã.

ThumbsUp wrote:But what it shares with the other nga approaches is that it starts off at a pitch but ends up higher in the end.

Yeah but what do they do in the middle?

Northern ngã tone starts off at 3, then rises all the way up to 5; there's no perceptible dipping, only a glottal break. A rising-only tone. You can see that in the graph. If I have to speculate, I'd say when you remove that break to make a "smooth flow", as you claim, ngã would become something like a shaky sắc tone, another rising-only tone, and nothing like the Southern hỏi tone.

The Southern tone starts of at 2, dips to 1, then shoots up to 4, or falling-rising. That's closer to the Northern hỏi, which starts at 3, dips to 1, then ascends back to 3: falling-rising.

ThumbsUp wrote:Hoi is different in that its one pitch bending down and coming back to same level of pitch.

Southern hỏi doesn't come back to same level of pitch but end up in a higher pitch, granted, but it does fall noticeably, then goes upwards, creating a V-shaped contour, like Northern hỏi. Ngã does NOT fall. They're very dissimilar in this sense.

You cannot say two tones are similar because they both "end up higher in the end". That's too broad of a criterion! You have to look at their contour as well. Do they simply rise, or do they simply fall, or do they rise then fall, or do they fall then rise?

Look, if we're going to use the Northern point of reference, which we are doing just now, and want to get technical about it, then the Southern merged tone is a whole different tone then hỏi and ngã in the North. And I think you can agree with me on this. On the other hand, I still don't get the logic you employ to analyse tones, so I guess you're entitled to your own perception and can call the merged tone "ngã" if you like. But for me, due to the fact that it's closer to Northern hỏi in pitch (low-to-mid), contour (falling-rising) as well as phonation (plain, not creaky), I'll keep calling my Southern tone "hỏi".

ThumbsUp wrote:Don't tell me you're a southerner and you never creak or crackle your nga. That's just too weird

I have no creaky tone in my speech. Creakiness is a fundamentally Northern thingy. (Maybe for North-Central folks as well, but I don't pay that much attention to their accents so I can't say.) A quick look at the comparison table in Wikipedia should confirm that.

Just be careful when you sample the Saigonese accent. A lot of people grow up in Saigon but have a recent Northern background. You never know. Saigon is the land of immigrants, so living in city you can hear just about every dialect of Vietnamese coexisting side by side.
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Re: Vietnamese Accents

Postby abcdefg » 2010-12-18, 15:35

I've always thought hỏi starting from mid to low :-?
And in reality no one pronounces the whole hỏi, they'll just stop at abt 1.5. So ur ngã misses a tail to be similar to our hỏi.
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Re: Vietnamese Accents

Postby Tenebrarum » 2010-12-18, 15:44

abcdefg wrote:in reality no one pronounces the whole hỏi, they'll just stop at abt 1.5.

On the way down or on the way up? Let's say it's on the way up. Even if you go: 3 --> 1 --> 1.5, that's still falling-rising. If on the way down, it's 3 --> 1.5, which is... like huyền? :?

abcdefg wrote:So ur ngã misses a tail to be similar to our hỏi.

What.
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Re: Vietnamese Accents

Postby abcdefg » 2010-12-18, 16:10

Lol i haven't been following the thread thoroughly, I'm reading everything on my mobile phone :(

Sorry, is the tone that dips from 2 to 1 then rises to 4 your Southern 'merged tone' ?

I was comparing that to Northern hỏi. From 1.5 to 4 it's a long enough distance right.

And comparing to our ngã, it dips to 1 in the middle. Northern ngã from 3 (stop) 5, the stop could represent the dip.(probably it's like ngạ á). So 3 1 4, 3 (.) 5, I still see ur merged tone more similar to Northern ngã.
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Re: Vietnamese Accents

Postby ThumbsUp » 2010-12-18, 17:31

abcdefg wrote:I've always thought hỏi starting from mid to low :-?
And in reality no one pronounces the whole hỏi, they'll just stop at abt 1.5. So ur ngã misses a tail to be similar to our hỏi.


Yeup exactly. Which is how I pronounced regular Hoi in the youtube clip.

Southern merged tone is, I'd say exactly like Nga. Just sometimes not creaked. Lets say wavy Nga is 23435<pulled stop. Regular Nga is just 234-35<pulled stop. Difference is -. Also looks exactly like the tone mark ~.

Hoi on the other hand is more like puff of air and sound which fades downwards (which is why this tone is so soft). It's something like air + 3321faded stop. However if you want to make the word longer, you have to bend it up or you lose sound cause if you keep fading it just sounds like you're running out of breath. So it's air + 3321123 when stressing the word to make it longer. It's different from huyen in that huyen doesn't have a soft puff of air + sound but just sound going straight down \ 321 and not puff3 321. Notice how Hoi also looks like it's tone mark ? without that dot on the bottom. That slight curve up is the sound of the air bending. The curve back inwards and down is the sound fading back out.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AYxqmqizqUs

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Re: Vietnamese Accents

Postby mōdgethanc » 2010-12-19, 3:46

How exactly are the ngã and nặng tones pronounced, anyway? I know they're mid-rising and low-falling respectively, but they're accompanied by an extrasegmental feature that seems to be variously described as glottalization or creaky voice. What is it?

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Re: Vietnamese Accents

Postby inquisitive » 2010-12-19, 7:54

I, too, get confused with the hoi and nga especially when it comes to spelling. Sometimes i think a word is suppose to use the nga, but actually uses hoi and vice-versa. So what is the best way to remember? Thanks.

Btw, does anyone think the forum format is hard to follow? I think for each reply, there should be more distinct or with bolder lines separating each reply.

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Re: Vietnamese Accents

Postby ThumbsUp » 2010-12-19, 9:41

inquisitive wrote:I, too, get confused with the hoi and nga especially when it comes to spelling. Sometimes i think a word is suppose to use the nga, but actually uses hoi and vice-versa. So what is the best way to remember? Thanks.

Btw, does anyone think the forum format is hard to follow? I think for each reply, there should be more distinct or with bolder lines separating each reply.


Here's a video I did showing the different approaches to pronouncing the two tones.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AYxqmqizqUs

Best way to remember is just to memorize which words are spelt with ngã and hỏi. Other than that you can try and read in northern accent and learn to differentiate the two, so remembering the words with ngã or hỏi would become easier.

Yeah, it does get kinda confusing without clear separation.

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Re: Vietnamese Accents

Postby inquisitive » 2010-12-19, 19:29

ThumbsUp wrote:
inquisitive wrote:I, too, get confused with the hoi and nga especially when it comes to spelling. Sometimes i think a word is suppose to use the nga, but actually uses hoi and vice-versa. So what is the best way to remember? Thanks.

Btw, does anyone think the forum format is hard to follow? I think for each reply, there should be more distinct or with bolder lines separating each reply.


Here's a video I did showing the different approaches to pronouncing the two tones.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AYxqmqizqUs

Best way to remember is just to memorize which words are spelt with ngã and hỏi. Other than that you can try and read in northern accent and learn to differentiate the two, so remembering the words with ngã or hỏi would become easier.

Yeah, it does get kinda confusing without clear separation.


Thanks. Btw, is there a video that shows the proper way to write in Vietnamese? and i meant actual writing and not typing it in on the computer.....it would be nice to write a note or letter the old fashioned way... Thanks again.

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Re: Vietnamese Accents

Postby abcdefg » 2010-12-20, 7:22

inquisitive wrote:is there a video that shows the proper way to write in Vietnamese? and i meant actual writing and not typing it in on the computer.....it would be nice to write a note or letter the old fashioned way...

Do you mean the handwriting scripts or how the tones are written?

Vietnamese pupils are taught to write from the first grade, to copy the sample letter (from books or teacher) to their notebooks. For example, this is the sample A and how to write it, stroke by stroke. And this is the whole alphabet.
There are softwares teaching that, too, some of them have the letter-pronunciation built-in.

However very few would write that way outside class, or when they grow up. If you want to have an old-fashioned note or letter, write it in any script style (printed-style handwriting is considered wrong in primary school) preferably European, and put the tones right.

To put the tones right, just put it like the typing machines do. It doesn't have to be precisely though, people can guess what tone goes with what letter. Just don't let them centimeters apart.

Talib wrote:How exactly are the ngã and nặng tones pronounced, anyway?

Nặng has a heavy glottal stop at the end. So to pronounce nặng, just pronounce the word without the tone then stop the flow all suddenly. Or pronounce the word with huyền and stop like at the middle.

Northern ngã has a glottal stop at the middle, then the tone rises. So to pronounce ngã, you just have to quickly pronounce nặng and sắc.

Draven wrote: Image

This is not like what we have around here though. This is more like it:
Image
I think it explains a bit.
Last edited by abcdefg on 2010-12-20, 8:35, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Vietnamese Accents

Postby inquisitive » 2010-12-20, 7:40

abcdefg wrote:
inquisitive wrote:is there a video that shows the proper way to write in Vietnamese? and i meant actual writing and not typing it in on the computer.....it would be nice to write a note or letter the old fashioned way...

Do you mean the handwriting scripts or how the tones are written?

Vietnamese pupils are taught to write from the first grade, to copy the sample letter (from books or teacher) to their notebooks. For example, this is the sample A and how to write it, stroke by stroke. And this is the whole alphabet.
There are softwares teaching that, too, some of them have the letter-pronunciation built-in.

However very few would write that way outside class, or when they grow up. If you want to have an old-fashioned note or letter, write it in any script style (printed-style handwriting is considered wrong in primary school) preferably European, and put the tones right.

To put the tones right, just put it like the typing machines do. It doesn't have to be precisely though, people can guess what tone goes with what letter. Just don't let them centimeters apart.


I meant how the tones are written. In other words, i want to take a pen and paper and write a word down. Then write the proper tone mark for it, but with the right stroke. Some words have several accent marks, so i want to know which one is normally written first. I want to learn it the way children learn it growing up. I've also noticed that many Vietnamese raised in Vietnam pretty much have the same or very similar handwriting styles. You can tell. Anyway, Is there a video on how to write the proper tonal marks? Thanks.

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Re: Vietnamese Accents

Postby abcdefg » 2010-12-20, 8:26

inquisitive wrote:I meant how the tones are written. In other words, i want to take a pen and paper and write a word down. Then write the proper tone mark for it, but with the right stroke. Some words have several accent marks, so i want to know which one is normally written first. I want to learn it the way children learn it growing up. I've also noticed that many Vietnamese raised in Vietnam pretty much have the same or very similar handwriting styles. You can tell. Anyway, Is there a video on how to write the proper tonal marks? Thanks.

Normally, the diacritics will be put last, and from right to left. Because writers usually aim to write fast, most words usually are written in one stroke - the pen's point isn't put off the paper when writing the word - so we'll finish the word first, then go back and put the marks.

And the letter's diacritics will be put first, then the word's.

For example, the word khướu:
We'll write: k - h - u - o - u - horn diacritic for o ( -> ơ) - diacritic of u ( -> ư) - acute for the word ( ' ).
The word's diacritic will never be put above semivowels. That's why the acute is above ơ.

For clips, this Youtube user has clips showing how to write the alphabet. For Vietnamese writing style, well it's just the copperplate thing as you can see in the clip. :)

Btw, abt software, I think this http://www.vnschool.net/modules.php?nam ... e&sid=3440 has enough in details.
Tôi kể người nghe chuyện Phố-trong-sông,
chuyện những mùa Đông đi qua thời con gái.
Bóng đổ dài, bước chân người mê mải
Gió chở mùa về,
hoang hoải cả giấc mơ..


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