Solve This Mystery and Win a Free Dinner!


This post is directed at people who can speak Vietnamese: I’ve been thinking about this language mystery a lot and haven’t found a good answer for it. You guys might think that this mystery is such a nonsense but as a language lover I can’t help wondering about it. Here’s the question:

I think Vietnamese is a gender-biased language with the preference of the masculine over the feminine. Men usually get to be mentioned first:  ông bà, bố mẹ,  thầy cô, anh chị em, etc.

But: what about cô chú ? Why is “cô” in front of “chú” ? What makes “cô chú” special?

I’m perfectly aware that there is no right answer for this but there might be some convincing theories out there. Show me your answer/theory by leaving a comment on this post or sending an email to ht.onair AT gmail DOT com. The deadline is 30/09/2012. Solve this mystery and get a free dinner with me.  In fact, I will come to your city and invite you to dinner in a restaurant of your choice!

I look forward to receiving your answers.