One Word for One World
One Word for One World

The language of the Hmong people - professional translations by native translators

Origin and affiliation

The Hmong are an ethnic group that mainly resides in southern China, Vietnam, Laos and Thailand. Emigrants in other countries (primarily the United States and France) sometimes form small, independent congregations. Even some early Chinese writings mention a people called “San Miao” which could be identical to this ethnic group. The term "Miao" still exists and is used mainly by nonmembers (especially in China) when referring to a larger group of indigenous tribes, while this specific ethnic group calls themselves "Hmong".

Today, the Hmong are a widely scattered tribe; various groups differentiate themselves in dress, dialects, and rituals, making it difficult to ascertain a census of those who actually call themselves Hmong. However, one can assume several million worldwide. Translations into and from Hmong are increasing in demand for this reason. With our translation agency, you can rely on expert, high quality translations. Our native speaking translators know their language and will translate your texts with pinpoint accuracy. Experiencing our services for yourself is as easy as emailing us your documents. If you have any questions we are more than happy to help you by phone.

The language of the Hmong people

The Hmong language belongs to the Miao-Yao, or Hmong-Mien, language family, and includes a wide variety of different dialects so different from each other that intercommunication is impossible. Usually this language group is categorized into the Sino-Tibetan language family, but others suggest that it belongs the Austro-Thai languages. A number of different writing systems have developed, many in the twentieth century, that make the language’s complexity more comprehensible for the reader. A standardized script was never decided upon, however.

Specifically, the Hmong language, which they refer to as "Hmongb" or "Hmaob", is called "Chuanqiandian Miao" and is spoken by around 2.5 million people. As one of the four Hmong languages with its own script, its roots lie in the dialect that used to be spoken in Southwest China. Within this language, a variety of further dialects exists: Sichuan-Guizhou-Yunnan, Northeast Yunnan, Guìyáng, Huìshu, Máshān, Luóbó Hé and Zhòngān Jiāng. Do you need a text to be translated into one of these language varieties? Our project managers are happy to help you. Give us a call or email us - we look forward to hearing from you!

The family of Hmongic languages

Included in the Hmong language group along with the Hmongb is the Dut Xongb, the Hmub, and Northwest-Yunnan, which is often referred to as the dialect of the Hmongb. These all use a variety of onsets, codas, and pitches (similar to Chinese), which when even slightly changed can make a large difference in meaning. With this comes a large array of singular or grouped sounds that may come across as peculiar to a European, especially with regards to what are called tones. In the written language, the type of tone (like high falling, low falling, or just high and low) is usually shown by a small letter at the end of a word. However, the number of tones even differs from dialect to dialect: While there are only six in the Dut Xongb, Hmub has eight different tones. Our native speaking translators are familiar with the fine tunings and cultural background of the Hmong language and translate your texts with care to always strike the right chord. Since we know that simply knowing the language isn’t enough, our translators also specialize in various subject areas. In everything from medicine, law, and marketing, to cuisine and engineering - we have the perfect translator for all subject areas.

How much does a translation into Hmong Do cost?

The standard rate for translations from English into Hmong Do is $ N,aN per word and for translations from Hmong Do into English the industry rate is $ N,aN. For new customers or large texts (more than 5,000 words) we may significantly reduce our rates. For urgent jobs that need several translators working simultaneously, we'll apply a surcharge. For a full list of rates per language, please visit Rates table for most requested language combinations.

Significance of Hmong outside China

Hmongb (the only language of the Miao-Yao family) is spoken even beyond the borders of China. In Thailand and Vietnam, the language’s own script is not used, but rather the Thai or Latin alphabet.

The Hmong language, as well as the culture of the tribe, is branded by variety and diversity, which may complicate trying to get a general look at the people themselves and what they encompass, but makes them that much more fascinating. Language and writing are just two features that make the Hmong stand out from other similar tribes.

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