Do You Speak Filipino? Filipino is one of two national languages in the Philippines. The other one is English. According to a 2007 data, there are 25 million Filipinos speaking the language, which is part of the 181 living languages spoken in the Philippines. The question is, if a Filipino speaks Filipino, who then speaks Tagalog? Well, according to the 1987 Constitution, Article 14(6), Filipino is the national language and it will be “further developed and enriched on the basis of existing Philippine and other languages.” In 1959 the language was termed Pilipino in an attempt to disassociate it with Tagalog, which is an ethnic group found in Luzon. We can say that Filipino is an enhanced version of Tagalog, and in some context, is actually the formal term for Tagalog. Filipino and Tagalog are not different, and whether you call it Filipino, Tagalog or Pilipino, these languages use just one grammar. Filipino is more modern and accepting of other languages than Tagalog, in the sense that in pure Tagalog, the word dictionary would be “talatinigan” whereas in Filipino, it is all right to say “diksyunaryo,” which is actually Spanish in origin (diccionario). There is even a term called Tag-lish, which combines Tagalog words with English. While Filipino is taught in school as a subject, English is still the medium of instruction for all levels. Now that the explanation of what Filipino or Tagalog is and has evolved into, let’s learn some Filipino words and maybe, a few phrases. Filipino is a rich language, and there are words spelled the same way but with the placement of accent in pronunciation, can mean differently. Most of the words commonly used are Spanish in origin. Exciting, isn’t it, but it could be confusing to some who are not used to it. SAME SPELLING, DIFFERENT MEANINGS Babà chin Babâ to go down, to dismount Babá to lean or rest against the hands Bagay harmonious, fitted,suitable Bagay a thing, something Baga embers, live coal Bagâ lungs Bagá a particle, used in asking questions Bukas tomorrow Bukás open Dating former Dating to arrive, arrival Basa to read Basâ moist, wet Amin ours Amin admit Tayô to stand (up) Tayo us Tamà correct Tama to be hit Mura cheap Mura to scold, to swear SPANISH TO FILIPINO Apellido apelyido (last name) Querida kerida (lover) Siempre siyempre (of course) Labios labi (lips) Fiesta piyesta (feast) Muñeca manika (doll) Ducha dutsa (shower) Toalla tuwalya (towel) Lavar maglaba (to wash clothes) Diseño disenyo (design) Explicar eksplika (to explain) Barato barat (stingy) La tienda tindahan (store) Gastar gastos (expenses) Tacon takong (shoe heels) REPETITIVE WORDS One peculiarity of the Filipino language is word repetition, which is quite common in Austronesian languages. It is either to give meaning or emphasis to the word. It is reduplication, which changes the meaning of the word. It can also indicate plurality. When used in names, for which the Filipinos have a propensity for, it indicates endearment. Notice the use of hyphen in these words. Let’s take a look at some examples: Paru-paro butterfly Maya-maya in a little while (also the name of a delicious fish,called crimson snapper in English) Liko-liko crooked Anting-anting amulet Isa-isa one by one Unti-unti very slowly Leave a Reply Cancel ReplyYou must be logged in to post a comment.