- Official name Socialist Republic of Vietnam. a country in SE Asia, comprising the former states of Annam, Tonkin, and Cochin-China: formerly part of French Indochina; divided into North Vietnam and South Vietnam during the Vietnam War but now reunified. 126,104 sq. mi. (326,609 sq. km). Capital: Hanoi.Compare North Vietnam, South Vietnam.
- Vietnam War.
- a republic in SE Asia: an ancient empire, conquered by France in the 19th century; occupied by Japan (1940–45) when the Communist-led Vietminh began resistance operations that were continued against restored French rule after 1945. In 1954 the country was divided along the 17th parallel, establishing North Vietnam (under the Vietminh) and South Vietnam (under French control), the latter becoming the independent Republic of Vietnam in 1955. From 1959 the country was dominated by war between the Communist Vietcong, supported by North Vietnam, and the South Vietnamese government; increasing numbers of US forces were brought to the aid of the South Vietnamese army until a peace agreement (1973) led to the withdrawal of US troops; further fighting led to the eventual defeat of the South Vietnamese government in March 1975 and in 1976 an elected National Assembly proclaimed the reunification of the country. Official language: Vietnamese. Religion: Buddhist majority. Currency: dong. Capital: Hanoi. Pop: 92 477 857 (2013 est). Area: 331 041 sq km (127 816 sq miles)Official name: Socialist Republic of Vietnam
from Vietnamese Viet, the people’s name + nam “south.” Vietnam War attested by 1963.