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Main article: Names of Ho Chi Minh City Ho Chi Minh City has gone by several different names during its history, reflecting settlement by different ethnic, cultural and political groups. It may also refer to the dense and tall forest that once existed around the city, a forest to which the Khmer name, Prey Nokor, already referred. Prey means forest or jungle, and nokor is a Khmer word of Sanskrit origin meaning city or kingdom, and related to the English word 'Nation' — thus, "forest city" or "forest kingdom". This name, though not his given name, was one he favored throughout his later years. Today this forms the area of Ho Chi Minh City.