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Learn the Top 15 Ways to Say Goodbye in Tagalog

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Walang iwanan. There’s probably no other Filipino value that will make you love the Philippines and its people more than the one represented by this expression. It basically means that no one is left behind. 

And that’s what Filipinos are all about. Pinoys stick together as a people, which is why you’ll find a Filipino community in nearly every corner of the world. Perhaps this makes saying goodbye in Tagalog that much more significant. 

Despite the fact that Filipinos always stick together, they’re also the ones who say goodbye to each other the most. Every year, more than a million Pinoys leave the country to live and work in a foreign land—and every day, families say goodbye to each other. But as the saying goes, “No goodbyes; only see you later.”

But how exactly do Filipinos say goodbye to each other? In this article, you’ll discover the top fifteen ways to say goodbye in Filipino. Start with a bonus, and download the Must-Know Beginner Vocabulary PDF for FREE! (Logged-In Member Only)

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Filipino Table of Contents
  1. Common Ways to Say Goodbye in Tagalog
  2. Specific Ways to Say Goodbye
  3. Untranslatable Goodbye Phrases in Filipino
  4. The FilipinoPod101 Advantage

1. Common Ways to Say Goodbye in Tagalog

Most Common Goodbyes

Filipinos are known for their hospitality, so the value they place on politeness should come as no surprise. When we speak of being polite and courteous, that includes knowing when and how to greet others, as well as how to ask permission when it’s time to go. Below are some of the most common ways to say goodbye in the Filipino language.

1. Paalam. / “Goodbye.”

“Goodbye” in Tagalog is paalam. This is a formal way to bid someone farewell in Filipino, so you won’t often hear it in conversations. Instead, you’re more likely to hear it in movies and read it in Filipino literature. You’ll also hear it in songs, such as in the classic OPM song Paalam Na by Rachel Alejandro. The chorus of the song goes:

  • Paalam na aking mahal, kay hirap sabihin. / “Goodbye, my love; such difficult words to say.”

2. Hanggang sa muli. / “Until next time.”

Hanggang sa muli is the Tagalog expression for “Until next time,” with hanggang being “until” and sa muli being “again.” Like paalam, this is a formal Filipino goodbye. 

Keep in mind that “next time” is actually sa susunod in Tagalog, so it’s also correct to say: Hanggang sa susunod. 

This phrase is often used as a follow-up to paalam, which is why it’s not uncommon to hear or read: 

  • Paalam. Hanggang sa muli. / “Goodbye. Until next time.”

Interestingly, this is something you also see in English grammar.

3. Hanggang sa muling pagkikita. / “Until we see each other again.”

Like the previous two examples, this phrase is rarely used in conversational Tagalog, and is more common in songs and literature. Hanggang sa muling pagkikita means “Until we see each other again,” and it’s just another way of saying: Hanggang sa muli nating pagkikita. / “Until our next meeting.” 

4. Babay! / “Buh-bye!”

Babay is the equivalent of the English words “buh-bye” or “bye bye.” In contrast to the first three words, this one is used only when you’re comfortable with or close to the person you’re saying goodbye to. That said, you don’t say this to your boss or to one of your clients. In fact, in the Philippines, this word is mainly used by little kids or parents saying goodbye to their children before leaving for work. 

5. Bye!

Yes, many Filipinos actually use the English word “bye” instead of the Tagalog equivalent. English is a second language to most Filipinos, so it’s not surprising that most people in the Philippines use a lot of English words in their conversations. In fact, you’ll rarely hear a Filipino person nowadays conversing in pure Tagalog. 

In the Philippines, there’s a subculture referred to as “conyo.” This refers to Tagalog-speaking people who, when speaking in English, insert one or two Tagalog words into their sentences, all the while speaking with a heavy American accent.

One example is “It’s so traffic naman today,” which, when translated, means: “The traffic is unusually heavy today.”

In regular Tagalog conversations, though, it’s not unusual to hear someone saying: 

  • Bye, mauna na ako. / “Bye, I’m leaving now.”

A Drunk Man Inside a Car

“It’s so traffic naman today.”


2. Specific Ways to Say Goodbye

Now, let’s discover how Filipino people say goodbye in more specific contexts.

6. Huwag magpagabi ha? / “Don’t stay out too late, okay?”

The conservativeness of the Filipino people is evident in the way they speak. This is clear, for example, in how Filipinos often speak to their loved ones. Huwag magpagabi is often said by strict parents or elders to remind their young ones that while they’re free to spend time with their friends, they’re still expected to come home before it gets dark. 

A: ‘Nay, alis na po ako. / “Ma, I’m leaving now.”
B: Sige. Huwag magpagabi ha? / “Sure. Don’t stay out too late, okay?”

7. Uwi kaagad ha? / “Be home as soon as possible, okay?”

Under Philippine Law, a person under the age of eighteen years old is still considered a child. But in many Filipino homes, it’s still very common to hear a parent bid their twenty-five-year-old daughter: Uwi kaagad ha? It’s like the Filipino way of saying goodbye, but not really. It’s like saying goodbye to the other person, but deep in your heart, you don’t want them to leave the house at all. Uwi, by the way, is short for umuwi, or “to come home.”

A: ‘Nay, alis na po kami ng mga kaibigan ko. / “Ma, I’m leaving with my friends now.”
B: Sige. Uwi ka kaagad ha? / “Sure. Be home as soon as possible, okay?”

8. Ingat! / “Take care!”

This Filipino word for goodbye translates to “care.” When using it to say goodbye, it’s actually short for Mag-ingat ka, meaning “You take care” or simply “Take care.” It’s used all the time as a way to wish the other person well or to tell them to take care of themselves. This is especially true if the person is embarking on a long journey or traveling at night. As a reply, you could simply say Ikaw rin or “You, too.”

A Mother with Two Children

Papayagan kitang mamasyal, basta uwi ka kaagad ha? 
(“I’ll let you go out with your friends, but promise me you’ll be home early, okay?”)

9. Mauna na ako. / “I gotta run.”

Mauna na ako is used to say that you need to leave. Most Filipinos incorrectly translate this to “I’ll go ahead,” which doesn’t have any use in the Filipino language at all. In Filipino, the phrase “go ahead” is actually sige. Mauna, on the other hand, means “to go first” or “to be the first.” In the context of saying goodbye, it means to be the first to leave or that someone is leaving already.

Mauna na ako basically means any of the following:

“I gotta run.”
“I have to run along.”
“I should be running along.”
“It’s time I ran along.”

  • Guys, mauna na ako para makaiwas sa traffic. / “Guys, I should be running along, or I’m going to have to deal with heavy traffic.”

10. Diyan ka na muna. / “I gotta leave you for a while.”

Another way to say goodbye in Tagalog is: Diyan ka na muna. Most Filipinos say this when they’re in a hurry to leave. It’s like when you’re having a conversation with a friend and then you suddenly receive a text message that there’s an emergency, or you suddenly remember something that you have to do quickly.

Naku! Kailangan ko palang bumili ng gamot. Diyan ka na muna. / “Oh my! I forgot that I need to get some medicine. I gotta leave you for a while.”

A Man and a Woman Hugging Each Other

Mauna na ako. Manonood pa ako ng Ang Probinsyano. 
(“I gotta run. It’s time for my favorite primetime show—Ang Probinsyano.”)

11. Iwan na muna kita diyan ha. / “I’ll leave you here for a while, okay?”

This is a more polite way of saying the previous expression. While diyan ka na muna is proper, if it’s not put into context, it could sound a bit rude. So, if you want to play it safe, you can say: Iwan na muna kita diyan.

  • Ay, nag-text ang boss ko. Emergency daw. Iwan na muna kita diyan ha? / “Oh, my boss texted me. He said it’s an emergency. Is it okay if I leave you here for a while?”

Notice the difference?

12. Kitakits! / “See you around!”

This Filipino term for goodbye is slang for “See you around” or “See you later.” It’s short for Kita-kita na lang, with kita being the Tagalog word for “to see.” Kita-kita na lang tayo is like saying: 

“Let’s just see each other around.” 
“Let’s meet again sometime.”

  • Sige, mauna na kami. Kitakits na lang sa susunod na reunion. / “We gotta run, guys. See you again at our next reunion.”

3. Untranslatable Goodbye Phrases in Filipino

One of the most unique things about the Filipino language is that it’s rich with words and phrases that don’t have an equivalent in other languages (particularly English). The following are a few untranslatable goodbye phrases in Tagalog.

13. Sige.

The word sige can be directly translated as “sure” or “go ahead,” but in many cases, Filipinos use it as a way of saying goodbye. In such a context, it could mean “go on” when addressing another person. It could also mean “I’m leaving now.” Sige can also be used on its own when someone is acknowledging a person who’s asking permission to leave.

A: Pare, mauna na ako. / “Hey mate, I gotta run.”
B: Sige. / “Sure.”

It can also be used as an introductory word when asking permission to leave:

  • Sige, guys. Mauna na ako. / “Alright, guys. I’m leaving now.”

Some people use it to get out of an awkward situation, like when you’re stuck in a conversation with someone you don’t really want to be chatting with. You can say sige and simply walk away.

A Man Smiling

Uhm…sige.

14. O siya, siya. 

This is an expression often used by the elderly. Perhaps it’s derived from Siya nawa, which basically means “Amen” or “So be it.” Sometimes, only one siya is used:

  • O siya, mauna na kami. / This could mean: “I guess we should go now.”

Siya is doubled only for emphasis. In response to the above statement, one could say: 

  • O siya, siya. Mag-ingat kayo ha? / “Alright then. You take care of yourselves, okay?”

15. O, paano? 

The direct translation of the word paano is “how.” In the context of saying goodbye, it doesn’t make sense to ask “How?” but Filipinos use it to say something along the lines of “What now?” It’s like saying goodbye and expecting an acknowledgment from the other person.

  • O, paano? Alis na ako. / “So, what now? I should be running along.”

4. The FilipinoPod101 Advantage

By now, you should have a better idea of how to say goodbye in Filipino. However, if you want to go deeper with your studies of important Filipino greetings, your best option is to sign up on FilipinoPod101.com. With FilipinoPod101, you’ll have access to tons of lessons with real-life applications.

Add to that our various resources to help you with your vocabulary, comprehension, and pronunciation, and you have the perfect all-in-one study tool.

Need to supercharge your learning? You can take advantage of FilipinoPod101’s MyTeacher feature, a Premium PLUS feature that will help you fasttrack your way to fluency. With this option, you can enjoy one-on-one lessons with a personal teacher, as well as real-time guidance and feedback. This way, you’ll always know whether or not you’re on the right track.

O, paano? Hanggang sa muli! Until our next post! 

Don’t forget to let us know in the comments what you think about this lesson, and share with us any questions or additional insight you may have!

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A Show of Devotion: Feast of the Black Nazarene

The Philippines has a huge Christian population (with 92.5% of Filipinos identifying as Christian, around 80% of which are Roman Catholic), so it should come as no surprise that religious festivities hold great meaning here. Of particular interest is a massive holiday commonly known as the Feast of the Black Nazarene. 

In this article, you will discover the Feast of the Black Nazarene’s origins as well as how devoted Filipinos celebrate the holiday today. 

Let’s get started!

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1. What is the Feast of the Black Nazarene?

a silhouette of someone praying in repentance

Each year on January 9, millions of mga deboto (devotees) celebrate the Feast of the Black Nazarene. This is a major religious holiday in the Philippines, drawing massive crowds and much speculation. 

The Black Nazarene is a life-size statue depicting a dark-skinned Jesus bearing the cross. According to the Black Nazarene story, this statue was created by an anonymous Mexican sculptor and brought to the Philippines in 1606. While no one is certain why or how the Black Nazarene statue is so dark in color, some speculate that the statue was exposed to fire during its relocation to the Philippines. Others say that the statue is likely made of Mesquite, a type of wood known for its black color. 

The Feast of the Black Nazarene in the Philippines commemorates the date that the statue was enshrined in the Black Nazarene Church (Quiapo) in 1787. Prior to this, the statue was housed in a variety of other churches, so this permanent enshrinement was a significant moment for the Filipino people. The event is referred to as the Traslación (or Transfer).

In addition to commemorating the Traslación, this holiday is also seen as a time to pay paggalang (homage) to Jesus’s suffering.

    → To learn the names of different religions in Filipino, head over to our Religion vocabulary list!

2. Feast of the Black Nazarene Traditions

Feast of the Black Nazarene Procession

Celebrations for the Feast of the Black Nazarene really begin the night before, on January 8. This is when devotees gather together in Rizal Park to see and touch the statue, which is placed on a grandstand in the park. People also bring along their own statues of the Black Nazarene. Throughout the night, Filipinos celebrate and prepare for the following day with sermons, songs, and other festive activities. 

To show their debosyon (devotion), millions of Filipinos engage in the Nazareno parade. This prusisyon (procession) begins in Rizal Park following a mass. The statue is placed on a carriage, accompanied by several men who support and protect it—these men are known as the Sons of the Nazarene, and they wear yellow or white shirts.

To show pagpapakumbaba (humility) and their resonance with Jesus’s suffering, many Filipinos take part in this procession nakapaa (barefoot). Huge crowds follow the procession for several hours—normally just short of a full day—in order to show their devotion to Jesus. Many of those marching also try to touch the statue. 

Many of the faithful believe that the statue can perform miracles of healing, with some people reporting having been cured of disease or illness after touching the statue. Those who cannot get close enough to touch the statue themselves will often throw a panyo (handkerchief) toward the Sons of the Nazarene, who then wipe the handkerchief on the statue and toss it back. This is because the miraculous healing power is thought to be transferable to the cloth. 

In addition to those walking in the procession, there are millions of people gathered along the edge of the route to see their loved ones walking and to get a glimpse of the statue. Everyone shouts the words “Viva Señor!” during the procession to show adoration for the Nazarene.

The Feast of the Black Nazarene procession ends in Quiapo, at the Minor Basilica of the Black Nazarene. 

3. Holiday Confusion!

Many people assume that the Feast of the Black Nazarene is the Quiapo Church’s annual feast day. However, this is not the case—the Feast of the Black Nazarene only celebrates and reenacts the Traslación.

Rather, the feast day people are thinking of takes place on June 24. This is St. John’s Day, held in commemoration of St. John’s birthday. Filipinos celebrate this day by ‘baptizing’ each other and covering themselves in mud and dried banana leaves. Their ‘baptism’ consists of throwing or drizzling water on each other in a sort of game, though this event is known to get out of hand with people damaging others’ property. 


4. Essential Vocabulary for the Feast of the Black Nazarene

Someone Lighting a Candle in Homage

Now let’s review some of the vocabulary words from this article, plus a few more! 

  • Quiapo (Quiapo Church) – proper noun
  • Deboto (Devotee) – noun
  • Prusisyon (Procession) – noun
  • Nazareno (Nazarene) – noun
  • Panata (Vow) – noun
  • Nakapaa (Barefoot) – adjective
  • Pagpapakumbaba (Humility) – noun
  • Magsisi (Repent) – verb
  • Panyo (Handkerchief) – noun
  • Debosyon (Devotion) – noun
  • Paggalang (Homage) – noun
  • Mirakulo (Miracle) – noun

If you head over to our Feast of the Black Nazarene vocabulary list, you can also hear the pronunciation of each word to practice along with. 

Final Thoughts

The Feast Day of the Black Nazarene is one of the most important dates in the Philippines, especially among faithful Catholics. In learning about this holiday, you’ve taken a step toward better understanding Filipino culture and immersing yourself in the language. We hope you enjoyed this lesson, and that you feel inspired to continue your Filipino studies! To learn about more Filipino holidays, you can check out the following blog posts on FilipinoPod101.com:

For even more useful content on the Filipino language and culture, create your free lifetime account with us today. We provide practical lessons and other learning materials for learners at every level, so you can jump right in wherever you are on your language learning journey! 

Before you go, let us know in the comments if you celebrate a similar holiday in your country. If not, would you ever want to visit the Philippines to witness the Feast of the Black Nazarene yourself? We look forward to hearing from you.

Happy learning!

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Araw ng Jose Rizal: Rizal Day in the Philippines

In every nation and at every point in history, there are certain names, faces, and stories that stand out from the rest. There are writers, artists, activists, and leaders whom nations herald and commemorate for years and for centuries. And there are true national heroes like the Philippines’s own Jose Rizal.

Today, we’ll talk about the Rizal Day holiday and the events it commemorates. 

Let’s get started.

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1. What is Rizal Day?

A Sketch Drawing of Jose Rizal

Observed each year on December 30, Rizal Day is a national holiday in the Philippines. It marks the date in 1896 that Jose Rizal, pambansang bayani (“national hero”) of the Philippines, was executed. 

History

For centuries, the Spanish colonized the Philippines and abused their power over the native inhabitants. This abuse began in 1521, when Ferdinand Magellan arrived in the Philippines and claimed the territory for Spain. While many Filipinos over the years had wanted kalayaan (“freedom”) from Spain, any attempted dissent proved futile.

In 1861, Jose Rizal was born and would grow up to become the country’s national hero and a martyr. 

Though Rizal worked as a doctor, he is most remembered for his makabayan (“patriotic”) works as a novelist. His two great works were titled Noli Me Tangere (“Touch Me Not”) and El Filibusterismo (“The Reign of Greed”), both of which shed light on the negative impact of the Spanish rule over the Philippines. These two novels were Rizal’s way of expressing his—and the nation’s—desire for mapayapang reporma (“peaceful reform”), though he wrote them while away in Europe. Experts believe that his novels spurred the Filipino population to act out against the Spanish government and eventually gain their freedom.

In 1892, Rizal returned to his home country and continued to fight with them toward freedom and pantay na karapatan (“equal rights”). In all this, he was never directly involved in violence or warfare. His continued dissidence led to him being exiled to Dapitan, Mindanao for three years. He eventually made his way to Cuba, where he was wrongly arrested for suspicion that he was involved in a nationalistic revolt. Rizal was convicted of the crime and his penalty was death by firing squad. He was shot to his death on December 30, 1896.

The influence of Rizal on the present-day Philippines cannot be overstated. He played a major role in leading the nation to freedom, equal rights, and dignidad (“dignity”). Most importantly, his patriotic work inspired Filipinos and gave them pag-asa (“hope”) of a better future. These are things which Filipinos today continue to enjoy; they will never forget Rizal’s name.

The very first Rizal Day observations began in 1898, when the first President of the Philippines (Emilio Aguinaldo) declared December 30 a day of national mourning. This was done to encourage commemoration of Rizal and of all Filipinos who perished under the Spanish colonial rule. 


2. Rizal Day Celebrations and Traditions

A Woman Looking Up in Hope

Rizal Day in the Philippines is a national holiday. This means that most people get the day off of work, and those who do have to work will receive double their usual wages. The day also happens to fall near the end of Christmas Break for many schools, so students and teachers are free to participate in the observations.

The largest ceremony for Rizal Day is held in Rizal Park, the park in which Rizal was shot to death. The President and Vice President of the Philippines lead these ceremonies, which involve a twenty-one gun salute and laying a wreath at the Rizal Monument. The flag is also raised and the Philippine Air Force flies overhead. The President may give a speech discussing the events of the past year and looking forward to plans for the future. Throughout the Philippines, Rizal Day is also celebrated on a smaller scale in each province, led by government officials.

Flags must be flown at half-mast on this day, and certain activities are banned. These include: cockfighting, horse racing, and jai-alai (a Basque-inspired sport similar to racquetball).

A History of Rizal Day Observations

Over the years, there have been a few Rizal Day celebrations that warrant particular recognition:

  • 1937: President Manuel L. Quezon made Tagalog the official language of the Philippines.
  • 1942: Rizal’s final poem, titled Mi último adiós, was recited in Japanese and KALIBAPI was inaugurated. 
  • 1996: To mark the 100-year anniversary of Rizal’s murder, his final steps were retraced and his death was reenacted.
  • 2000: A terrorist bombing killed 22 people and injured 100 more.

Also note that from 1936 to 1973, Rizal Day also served as the President’s inauguration day. In 1973, the inauguration date was moved to June 30. 


3. Rizal Park

Rizal Park (also called Luneta Park) is where Jose Rizal was shot to his death and where the main commemorative event takes place each year. Within the park lie the Rizal Monument and the life-size diorama of his final moments, as well as museums and gardens. 

This is a major tourist destination and a popular site for native Filipinos as well. If you plan on visiting Manila, don’t forget to walk through Rizal Park!


4. Essential Filipino Vocabulary for Rizal Day

A Group of People Holding Each Other’s Wrists

Let’s review some of the key vocabulary words from this article so you can start discussing Rizal Day in Tagalog! 

  • Noli Me Tangere – “Touch Me Not”
  • El Filibusterismo – “The Reign of Greed”
  • Kalayaan – “Freedom” [n]
  • Makabayan – “Patriotic” [adj]
  • Araw ni Jose Rizal – “Jose Rizal’s Day”
  • Pambansang bayani – “National hero” 
  • Pantay na karapatan – “Equal rights” [n]
  • Pag-asa – “Hope” [n]
  • Mapayapang reporma – “Peaceful reform” [n]
  • Dignidad – “Dignity” [n]

Remember that you can find each of these words, along with their pronunciation, on our Rizal Day vocabulary list!

Final Thoughts

Rizal Day in the Philippines is a time of solemn commemoration and reflection on the events of the past, as well as a day to appreciate the nation’s freedom. Most of all, it seeks to honor Rizal for his major role in setting the country on its path to a better future.

Who are some prominent national heroes of your country? Do you have a special day to celebrate them? Let us know in the comments! 

To continue exploring the rich Filipino culture and language, you can read these articles from FilipinoPod101.com:

This is just a small sample of everything FilipinoPod101 has to offer! From themed vocabulary lists to fun audio and video lessons, we provide tons of learning resources for aspiring Filipino learners. Create your free lifetime account today and see what we’re all about! You’ll be speaking Filipino in minutes and fluent before you know it. 

Happy learning!

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The Pronoun in Tagalog/Filipino: Your Ultimate Guide

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There are many types of words we use in our everyday lives when communicating with each other, and pronouns are among them. You may not realize it, but you frequently refer to other people or things using pronouns in your everyday conversations. Pronouns are used primarily to replace nouns in order to avoid redundancy. 

The pronoun in Tagalog is referred to as panghalip. Just like in English grammar, there are several categories of the panghalip as a part of speech. Keep in mind, though, that not all English pronouns have direct equivalents in Filipino. Moreover, some Filipino pronouns may be used in more ways than English pronouns, and there are also categories under panghalip that aren’t found in English grammar.
The first type of panghalip is called panghalip panao.

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Filipino Table of Contents
  1. Panghalip Panao (Personal Pronouns)
  2. Panghalip Pamatlig (Demonstrative Pronouns)
  3. Panghalip Pananong (Interrogative Pronouns)
  4. Panghalip Panaklaw (Indefinite Pronouns)
  5. Panghalip Pamanggit (Relative Pronouns)
  6. Panghalip Patulad
  7. Conclusion

1. Panghalip Panao (Personal Pronouns)

Introducing Yourself

The personal pronoun in Tagalog is panghalip panao. The term panao is derived from the word tao, which is Filipino for “man” or “human.” And as the term suggests, the role of panghalip panao is to take the place of nouns that name people.

Before we move forward, you need to understand that Filipino pronouns are categorized by case. They can either be Direct (ANG pronouns), Indirect (NG pronouns), or Oblique (SA pronouns). The following are Filipino personal pronouns under each of these three categories:

A- Filipino ANG Pronouns

Personal pronouns in this category are the ones a sentence focuses on. 

In EnglishIn Filipino
“I”ako
“you”ikaw
“he” / “she”siya
“we”tayo (inclusive) / kami (exclusive)
“you all”kayo
“they”sila

1 – ako or “I” (singular first person)

Examples:

Ako ang may-ari ng bahay na ito. 

I am the owner of this house.”

Ako ay pupunta sa kasal ni Ellen. 

I am going to Ellen’s wedding.”

2 – ikaw or “you” (singular second person)

Examples:

Ikaw ang dahilan kung bakit ako pumunta dito.

You are the reason that I came here.”

Ikaw na lang ang kumain ng keyk.

You eat the cake.”

Woman being Offered a Piece of Cake

3 – siya or “he” / “she”

In this day and age, due to gender issues, people are more careful when it comes to using pronouns. However, in Filipino grammar, pronouns show no distinction between “he” and “she.” Instead, the word used for Filipino gender pronouns in the singular second person is simply siya. That’s definitely one trick to learn when studying Filipino.

Examples:

Siya ang nakita mo sa mall kahapon.

She’s the one you saw at the mall yesterday.”

Siya yung pogi na sinasabi ko sa’yo!

He’s the cute guy I was telling you about!”

4 – tayo (inclusive) / kami (exclusive) or “we” (plural first person)

Examples:

Tayo ang dapat lumapit sa kanya.

We are the ones who are supposed to approach him.”

Kakain kami sa Mang Inasal.

We are going to eat at Mang Inasal.”

5 – kayo or “you” / “you all” (plural second person)

Examples:

Kayo ang may pakana ng lahat ng ito.

You are the mastermind behind all of this.”

Kumain na kayo dito.

You all should eat here.”

6 – sila or “they” (plural third person)

Examples:

Sila ang mga napili na lumahok sa paligsahan.

They were the ones chosen to participate in the contest.”

Umuwi sila kaagad pagkatapos ng programa.

They all went home right after the program.”

B- Filipino NG Pronouns

Ng (pronounced nang) personal pronouns are used to replace unfocused nouns in a sentence. In Filipino grammar, possessive pronouns can also take this form, and these words can also serve as a replacement for an unfocused actor.

In EnglishIn Filipino
“my” / “of me”ko
“your” / “of you”mo
“his” / “her” / “of him” / “of her”niya
“our” / “of us”namin (exclusive) / natin (inclusive)
“your” / “of you”ninyo
“their” / “of them”nila

1 – ko or “my” / “of me” (singular first person)

Examples:

Expressing possession

Desisyon ko ang masusunod.

“It’s my decision that should be taken.”

As a substitute for an unfocused actor

Binili ko ang ang mga pagkain.

“The food was bought by me.”

2 – mo or “your” / “of you” (singular second person)

Examples:

Expressing possession

Sapatos mo yung nasa labas ng pinto.

“It seems that your shoes are on the doorstep.”

Cell phone mo ba yung ginagamit niya?

“Is that your cell phone that he’s using?”

3 – niya or “his” / “her” / “of him” / “of her” (singular third person)

Examples:

As a substitute for an unfocused actor

Kinuha niya ang lahat sa akin.

“He took everything from me.”

Binigyan niya ng pera ang kanyang nakababatang kapatid.

She gave her younger brother some money.”

4 – namin (exclusive) / natin (inclusive) or “our” / “of us” (plural first person)

Examples: 

As a substitute for an unfocused actor

Kinuha namin ang padala niya kahapon.

“The package was picked up by us yesterday.”

Nakayanan natin ang mga pagsubok.

“The challenges were overcome by us.”

5 – ninyo or “your” / “of you” (plural second person)

Example: 

Mali ang ginawa ninyo.

Your actions were wrong.”

6 – nila or “their” / “of them” (plural third person)

Example: 

Mali ang ginawa nila.

Their actions were wrong.”

C- Filipino SA Pronouns

Sa personal pronouns are used to indicate an unfocused direction and location in a sentence. They also indicate possession. In this case, they act as Filipino possessive pronouns or panghalip paari.

In EnglishIn Filipino
“me” / “my”akin
“you” / “your”iyo
“him” / “his” / “her”kanya
“us” / “our”amin (exclusive) / atin (inclusive)
“you” / “your”inyo
“them” / “their”kanila

1 – akin or “me” / “my” (singular first person)

Examples: 

Expressing location

Nasa akin ang bag mo.

“Your bag is with me.”

Expressing possession

Siya ay aking katrabaho.

“She is my colleague.”

2 – iyo or “you” / “your” (singular second person)

Examples: 

Expressing direction

Tatawag ako sa iyo bukas. 

“I am going to call you tomorrow.”

Naiinis daw siya sa iyo.

“She said she’s mad at you.”

3 – kanya or “him” / “his” / “her”

Examples:

Expressing location

Nasa kanya na ang susi ng kotse.

“The car key is with her already.”

Expressing possession

Yan ay kanyang mga damit.

“Those are her clothes.”

4- Formal Usage

Just as in many other languages, second- or third-person pronouns are used in formal or polite settings. For instance, when speaking with an elderly person, instead of simply saying Saan ka galing? we say, Saan kayo galing? meaning “Where have you been?” Notice that without the iteration po, the statement is still considered polite.

Woman Showing Respect to Elderly

D- Reflexive Pronouns

Reflexive pronouns, such as “myself,” “himself,” and “themselves,” always appear with the word sarili, meaning “self” in Filipino.

For instance, the equivalent of “himself” is either sarili niya or ang kaniyang sarili, depending on how you want to say it.

This quote from the film Heneral Luna is a great example:

Mayroon tayong mas malaking kaaway kaysa mga Amerikano—ang ating sarili.

“We have an enemy far greater than the Westerners—ourselves.” 

Pinahirapan nila ang kanilang sarili sa hindi pag-aaral nang mas maaga.

“They tortured themselves by not studying ahead of time.”

2. Panghalip Pamatlig (Demonstrative Pronouns)

Demonstrative pronouns are referred to as panghalip pamatlig in Filipino. They’re used to point to a specific noun in a sentence. In English grammar, there are only four demonstrative pronouns: “this,” “that,” “these,” and “those.” The case is different for panghalip pamatlig.

For instance, there are four types of panghalip pamatlig:

  • Pronominal
  • Panawag pansin
  • Patulad
  • Panlunan

Examples of Pronominal:

  • ito (“this”)
  • dito (“here”)
  • iyan (“that”)
  • niyan (“that”)
  • diyan (“there”)
  • iyon (“that”)
  • doon (“there”)

Ito ang gusto ko.

This is what I want.”

Regarding iyan and niyan, both words are translated into “that” in English, and both represent something that’s away from the speaker. The main difference between the two is that iyan is an ANG marker, while niyan is a NG marker. More importantly, iyan is usually placed at the beginning of a sentence, while niyan is placed at the end of a sentence.

Iyan ang gusto kong makita.

That is what I want to see.”

Ayaw ko niyan.

“I don’t like that.”

Gusto kong pumunta diyan.

“I want to go there.”

Examples of Panawag Pansin:

  • eto / heto (“here” / “this”)
  • ayan / hayan (“that”)
  • ayun / hayun (“there”)

Heto ako.

Here I am.”

Ayan sila.

That’s them.”

Ayun ang pera sa ibabaw ng kama.

There’s the money on the bed.”

Examples of Patulad:

  • anito / ganito (“like this”)
  • ganiyan / ganyan (“like that”)
  • ganoon / gayon (“like that” / “like those”)

Ganito ang ginawa niya.

“He did it like this.”

Ganoon ang pagkatumba niya sa motor.

“She fell on the motorbike just like that.”

Examples of Panlunan:

  • doon / naroon / nandoon (“there”)
  • diyan / riyan (“there”)
  • narito / nandito (“here”)

Nandoon ang mga taong hinahanap niyo.

“The people you’re looking for are there.”

Narito na ang pinakahihintay ng lahat.

“What you have been waiting for is finally here.”

3. Panghalip Pananong (Interrogative Pronouns)

Basic Questions

Interrogative pronouns in Filipino, or panghalip pananong, are pronouns used to make asking questions a lot less complicated.

Student Asking a Question

There are only five panghalip na pananong, which are the equivalents of the five in English grammar. However, unlike in English, panghalip pananong has a plural form.

Singular: 

  • Ano (“What”)
  • Alin (“Which”)
  • Sino (“Who” / “Whom”)
  • Kanino (“Whose”)

Ano ang sabi mo?

What did you say?”

Alin dito ang pinaka nagugustuhan mo?

Which one do you like the most?”

Sino ang kumuha ng salamin dito?
Who removed the mirror here?”

Sino ang pinagkakatiwalaan mo?

Whom do you trust?”

Kanino ang aso na iyan?

Whose dog is that?”

Plural:

  • Anu-ano (“What/Which ones”)
  • Alin-alin (“Which ones”)
  • Sinu-sino (“Who”)
  • Kani-Kanino (“Whom” / “Whose”)

In the plural form of panghalip pananong, the meaning may not change in English, but it’s emphasized in Filipino. 

For example:

Anu-ano ba ang mga sinabi niya?

What specific things did he say?”

Even if you use the singular form in Filipino, the meaning in English remains the same as long as the particle mga, which pluralizes countable nouns, is used.

So, Ano ba ang mga sinabi niya? could have the same translation in English as Anu-ano ba ang mga sinabi niya?

Alin-alin dito ang mga binigay mo sa kaibigan mo?

Which ones among these did you give to your friend?”

Sinu-sino ang mga dumalo sa miting?

Who among the guys attended the meeting?”

Kani-kanino itong mga nakakalat na laruan sa sahig?

Whose toys are these left lying on the floor?”

4. Panghalip Panaklaw (Indefinite Pronouns)

As the term suggests, indefinite pronouns don’t refer to any specific person or object. They are referred to in Filipino as panghalip panaklaw. Panaklaw comes from the root saklaw, which implies range or scope.

Commonly used panghalip panaklaw words are as follows:

1 – lahat (“everyone” / “everybody” / “everything” / “all”)

Gusto sumama ng lahat sa field trip.

Everybody wants to join the field trip.”

People Raising Their Hands

Ang lahat ay ibinoto siya na maging gobernador.

All voted for him to be governor.”

2 – sa lahat ng dako (“everywhere”)

Naghanap kami sa lahat ng dako pero hindi pa rin namin siya natagpuan.

“We searched everywhere and still didn’t find her.”

3 – sinuman (“anyone”)

Ang sinuman na hindi pupunta ay bibigyan ng parusa.

Anyone who does not attend will be given a penalty.”

4 – anuman / alinman (“anything”)

Itapon na lang ang anuman na wala nang silbi.

“Just throw anything that doesn’t serve any purpose.”

5 – kaunti (“few” / “a few”)

Kaunti na lang ang natirang tickets.

“There’s just a few tickets left.”

6 – madami / marami (“many” / “a lot”)

Marami sa kanila ang ayaw sa huling resolusyon na ipinasa ng mga miyembro ng board of directors.

A lot of them are not in favor of the recent resolution passed by members of the board of directors.”

7 – saanman (“anywhere” / “wherever”)

Saanmang dako ng mundo, ikaw ay susundan ko.

Anywhere you go, I am sure to follow.”

In some cases, a Tagalog pronoun is placed after saanman in the first and third persons, and the words saan (“where”) and man (“any”) are written separately.

Susundan ko sya saan man siya (third person) pumunta.

“I will follow her wherever she may go.”

Sinusundan niya ako saan man ako (first person) pumunta.

“He follows me wherever I go.”

And in the second person, a pronoun is placed between saan and man.

Susundan kita saan ka (second person) man pumunta.

“I will follow you wherever you go.”

Hahanapin kita saan ka (second person) man magtago.

“I will look for you wherever you may hide.”

8 – wala / wala ni isa (“none”)

Wala ni isa sa kanila ang nagtangkang magsalita.

None of them had the courage to speak.”

9 – isang tao / isa (“someone” / “somebody”)

May isa na dapat tanggalin sa group.

Someone has to be removed from the group.”

10 – bawat isa (“each”)

Ang bawat isa sa atin ay may papel na ginagampanan sa team na ‘to.

Each of us has a role to play in this team.”

5. Panghalip Pamanggit (Relative Pronouns)

Improve Listening

Relative pronouns in Filipino are called panghalip pamanggit. Their main function is that of introducing a relevant clause and connecting it to an independent clause.

The most common examples of panghalip pamanggit are na and ng.

Examples:

Ang drayber na nakabundol sa mag-asawa ay nahuli.

“The driver who hit the couple was caught.”

Huwag mong hawakan ang mga bagay na hindi mo pagmamay-ari.

“Don’t touch things that don’t belong to you.”

Mayroon akong kaibigan na ang kuya ay napaka kulit.

“I have a friend whose brother is so annoying.” 

Huwag na huwag magtitiwala sa tao na ang ulo ay napapanot.

“Never trust a man whose hair is balding.”

Ang mga binti ng kalabaw ay malaki.

“The legs of the water buffalo are large.” 

Although the direct equivalent of the word ng is “of” in English, it functions in this sentence as a panghalip pamanggit.

Again, the reason is that some Filipino words may have a direct equivalent in English, and yet they are used in a different manner.

That said, the relative pronouns “which,” “that,” “who,” “whom,” and “whose,” can all be translated to na.

6. Panghalip Patulad

Panghalip patulad is a Filipino pronoun category that isn’t found in English. Patulad comes from the root word tulad, which denotes similarity.

Words under this category are used to replace words that denote manner, or how things are performed or acted. 

For instance, “This is how we do it,” can be translated to Ganito namin ginagawa ‘yan. In this sentence, the word ganito is considered a panghalip patulad.

That said, the three major words used as panghalip patulad are ganito, ganyan, and ganoon.

1 – Ganito

The word ganito can be directly translated to “like this” or “in this manner.” It’s used when the object being spoken of is near the speaker.

In the following examples, observe how the use of the word ganito changes in the English translation depending on how it’s being used in the Filipino sentences.

Ganito kami sa Pilipinas.

“This is how we are in the Philippines.”

Ganito ang dapat nating gawin.

“This is what we should do.”

In some instances, the word alone (along with a demonstration from the speaker) is enough to answer a question about how something is done.

Paano mo ginagawa yan?

Ganito.

“How do you do it?”

“This way.”

2 – Ganyan

Ganyan can be translated to “like that” or “in that manner.” It’s used when the object being described is near the person being spoken to.

Ganyan ka mag-shoot ng bola!

That’s how you shoot a ball!”

Guy Shooting a Basketball

Ganyan pala maghiwa ng sibuyas.

“So that’s how you’re supposed to slice an onion.”

Pigain mo siya nang ganyan.

“Squeeze it in that manner.”

3 – Ganoon / Ganun

Just like ganyan, ganoon can also be translated to “like that” or “in that manner.” However, it’s used when the object being described is far from both the speaker and the person being spoken to.

Ganun din ang kotse na gusto kong bilhin.

That’s the same car model I want to buy.”

Nakita mo kung paano niya sinagot ang tanong? Ganoon ka din dapat sumagot.

“Did you see how he answered the question? You should answer in that same manner.”

7. Conclusion

Filipino is a bit of an inflected language, which may make it a bit confusing for those who are studying it. Even Pinoys themselves confuse the two terms Filipino and Tagalog. This is where the importance of studying the language further comes in.

If you want to learn more about Filipino and Tagalog pronouns, a good place to start is FilipinoPod101, a language-learning portal that provides students with a structured yet fun and enjoyable way of learning Filipino grammar. One of the many perks it provides is the ability to learn Filipino anywhere and anytime you want. FilipinoPod101 can also provide you with a personal tutor if you want to speed up your learning process.

Whether it’s 100 nouns or 100 adjectives you want to learn, or whether you want to learn how to say “Hello” or “I love you” in Filipino, you can rest assured that FilipinoPod101 will be able to guide you all the way through.

And before you leave, please don’t hesitate to let us know in the comments section below what you think about this article and whether there are questions about pronouns in Tagalog you want to ask! We’ll do our best to help you out.

Happy Filipino learning!

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Let’s Learn the Basics of Tagalog Sentence Structure!

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Any Filipino who grew up in the 80s would be familiar with Barok, one of the most popular Pinoy comic book characters at that time. His character was similar to those in America’s The Flintstones, but instead of speaking like Fred or Barney, he spoke like Tarzan. And you know what that’s like—words jumbled and all.

In the Philippines, a person who can’t speak straight Tagalog or English is labeled as someone who is Barok magsalita (one who speaks like Barok).

That is why it’s crucial to learn the proper Tagalog sentence structure. For one, it helps your readers or listeners understand the simplest sentences you’re trying to convey (not to mention it will keep you from being nicknamed Barok).

But don’t you worry, because if there’s one thing about Filipino grammar that’s not too difficult to learn, it’s Tagalog word order. What most learners of the Filipino language love is its flexibility when it comes to word order. You’ll find out what I mean later on when we get to the lesson proper.

For now, let’s get to the basics of Filipino sentence structure first.

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Filipino Table of Contents
  1. An Overview of Tagalog Word Order
  2. Basic Word Order with Subject, Verb, and Object
  3. Filipino Word Order with Prepositional Phrases
  4. Word Order with Modifiers
  5. Transforming a Regular Sentence into a Question
  6. Translation Exercises
  7. FilipinoPod101 Will Help Ease the Confusion

1. An Overview of Tagalog Word Order

Improve Listening

The most common sentence structure used in the English language is S-V-O (Subject-Verb-Object). It’s acceptable to use the same word order in Filipino, which is what many beginners do. However, when it comes to spoken Filipino, using S-V-O will result in the speaker sounding awkward. Let’s take this sentence for example: 

 S       V     O

“I am studying Filipino.”

If you translate this into Tagalog, you will get: Ako ay nag-aaral ng Filipino

Now, this one is grammatically correct, but when spoken, it should be structured as:

V                S            O

“Studying     I     Filipino.”  →  Direct Translation

Nag-aaral ako ng Filipino.

That said, word order in Tagalog is primarily V-S-O, and S-V-O is considered an inverted form (Kabalikang Anyo in Tagalog). But then, it also follows the V-O-S structure

One very important thing you need to understand about Tagalog, though, is that it doesn’t always follow the subject-predicate structure. In the English language, the object within a sentence is always different from the subject. In Filipino, however, a word that follows a direct marker, like si or ang, is the subject. This means that the object can also function as the subject. Here’s an example:

 S          V         O

“Julia is studying Filipino.”

Si Julia ay nag-aaral ng Filipino.

Let’s translate this into Filipino using the V-S-O pattern.

V                      S            O

“Studying        Julia      Filipino.”  →  Direct Translation

Nag-aaral si Julia ng Filipino.

Now, let’s try using the V-O-S pattern instead.

V                      O            S

“Studying        Filipino     Julia.”

Nag-aaral ng Filipino si Julia.

Notice that in the S-V-O example, the sentence uses the word ay between the subject (Julia) and the verb (nag-aaral). It’s long been thought (and taught) that ay is the copula “to be.” More recent sources, however, say that ay is more of a replacement for a comma or a slight pause. The same sources say that it can’t be a verb since it can appear in a sentence along with other verbs, although in most cases, it seems that it’s the direct translation of the verb “is.” 

Keep in mind, too, that ay only appears in the S-V-O form of the sentence (which, by the way, is viewed as formal or literary). Here are a few examples:

  • “The child is playing.”

Ang bata AY naglalaro.

  • “Butch is drinking.”

Si Butch AY umiinom.

  • “Kobe is sleeping.”

Si Kobe AY natutulog.

  • “The lady is sewing.”

Ang ale AY nananahi.

    Need a dictionary for this lesson? The FilipinoPod101 Dictionary is one of the most complete free Filipino-English dictionaries online!

2. Basic Word Order with Subject, Verb, and Object

Compared to the English language, word order in Filipino is more flexible. In fact, you can construct certain sentences in up to six different ways. Don’t believe me? Let’s take a look at the following sentence:

“The man gave the woman some money.”

There are six different ways you can write or say this sentence in Filipino. Each of these sentences conveys the same meaning, and they all include the same grammatical components. And yet, as you can see, the words are ordered differently.

  • Nagbigay ng pera sa babae ang lalaki. 
  • Nagbigay ng pera ang lalaki sa babae.
  • Nagbigay sa babae ng pera ang lalaki.
  • Nagbigay sa babae ang lalaki ng pera.
  • Nagbigay ang lalaki sa babae ng pera.
  • Nagbigay ang lalaki ng pera sa babae.

Here, you can see that the verb (nagbigay) is always in the initial position, but the order of the rest of the words is adjustable. This shows how flexible Tagalog can be!

Woman Balancing a Ball in the Curve of Her Back

Did you say flexible?

Let’s try a simpler sentence this time. 

“I study Filipino.” 

This can be translated in a couple of ways:

S                V O

  • Ako ay nag-aaral ng Filipino.

V                 S         O

  • Nag-aaral ako ng Filipino.

Both of these translations are correct, but in normal conversations, you would usually use the second example: Nag-aaral ako ng Filipino.

Example: Nag-aaral ako ng Filipino ngayon sa FilipinoPod101. (“I am currently studying Filipino via FilipinoPod101.”)

3. Filipino Word Order with Prepositional Phrases

When it comes to sentences with prepositional phrases, the order of the words is similar to that in English. Let’s take the sentence below for example:

  • Place Preposition. “He studies at home.” (Nag-aaral siya ng Filipino sa bahay.)
  • Time Preposition. “He studies in the evening.” (Nag-aaral siya ng Filipino sa gabi.)
  • Preposition of Manner. “He studies with his friend.” (Nag-aaral siya ng Filipino kasama ang kaibigan niya.)

Based on the examples, you can see that the preposition is placed AFTER the object. This is how the words are ordered in conversations. But in writing, the preposition can be placed BEFORE the object as shown in the following examples:

  • Place Preposition. “He studies Filipino at home.” (Nag-aaral siya sa bahay ng Filipino.)
  • Time Preposition. “He studies Filipino in the evening.” (Nag-aaral siya sa gabi ng Filipino.)
  • Preposition of Manner. “He studies Filipino with his friend.” (Nag-aaral siya kasama ang kaibigan niya ng Filipino.)

Question: Can the preposition/prepositional phrase be placed at the BEGINNING of the sentence? Let’s see.

  • Place Preposition. “He studies Filipino at home.” (Sa bahay siya nag-aaral ng Filipino.)
  • Time Preposition. “He studies Filipino in the evening.” (Sa gabi siya nag-aaral ng Filipino.)
  • Preposition of Manner. “He studies Filipino with his friend.” (Kasama niya ang kaibigan niyang nag-aaral ng Filipino.)

Answer: ABSOLUTELY! In fact, the most natural way to say the given example sentences in Tagalog is by placing the preposition/prepositional phrase at the beginning of the sentence. 

4. Word Order with Modifiers

Modifiers have many functions, including clarifying, qualifying, or limiting a particular word in a sentence to add emphasis or detail. These grammatical elements are often in the form of adjectives and adverbs. 

In Tagalog grammar, a modifier can either be an adjective or an adverb depending on the word it’s modifying. For instance, if the word being modified in a sentence is a noun, then the modifier used is an adjective. If, on the other hand, the word being modified is a verb, the modifier is an adverb.

Take the word mabuti, for instance, which means “good.”

It can be used to describe a noun, like estudyante (“student”): estudyanteng mabuti (“good student”). 

In this sentence, mabuti functioned as an adjective.

It can be used to describe verbs, too. You can say: nag-aral nang mabuti (“studied well”). 

Here, mabuti now functions as an adverb.

In Tagalog, modifiers can appear either before or after the subject, but what plays a huge part here are the linkers na and –ng. Whenever you see these enclitics in a sentence, it means modification has taken place.

In these examples, the modifier appears before the subject:

  • mabait na estudyante (“kind/good student”)
  • matalinong estudyante (“bright student”)
  • masunuring estudyante (“obedient student”)

We can also place the modifier after the subject:

  • estudyanteng mabait (“kind/good student”)
  • estudyanteng matalino (“bright student”)
  • estudyanteng masunurin (“obedient student”)

As you’ve noticed, the meaning of the phrases didn’t change even if the position of the modifiers did.

A Man Holding an A+ Assignment

Matalinong estudyante. (“Bright student.”)

Oh, and before anything else, let’s talk about the markers na and ng for a second. Actually, -ng is simply a modified form of na. It’s used to replace na if the word that comes before it ends in a vowel. But what if na follows a word ending in the letter n? If that’s the case, we drop the n from ng so that it now becomes g. We use na if the word it follows ends in a consonant. 

We can see some of these rules applied in the recent examples, but let’s check out some more:

Noun + Linker + ModifierModifier + Linker + NounTranslation
lupang hiniranghinirang na lupa“chosen land”
asong maliitmaliit na aso“small dog”
bangkang papelpapel na bangka“paper boat”
balong malalimmalalim na balon“deep well”
payong na bagobagong payong“new umbrella”

Now, let’s try it with some verbs:

Verb + Linker + ModifierModifier + Linker + VerbTranslation
umiiyak na batabatang umiiyak“crying child”
lumilipad na ibonibong lumilipad“flying bird”
kumakantang babaekumakantang babae“singing lady”
tumutuklaw na ahasahas na tumutuklaw“striking snake”
tumatakbong sundalosundalong tumatakbo“running soldier”

Clear? Good. Now, let’s see how a regular sentence can be transformed into a question.

5. Transforming a Regular Sentence into a Question

Improve Pronunciation

In the Tagalog language, there is one go-to word for forming interrogative sentences. That word is ba. This marker is actually one of the several untranslatable Tagalog words. If you want to change a sentence from the simple or imperative forms to the interrogative form, you simply add the word ba. Let’s try it with some sentences.

  • Simple Form: Nag-aaral si Arlene ng Filipino. (“Arlene is studying Filipino.”)
  • Interrogative Form: Nag-aaral ba si Arlene ng Filipino? (“Is Arlene studying Filipino?”)
  • Imperative Form: Mag-aral ka ng Filipino. (“Go and study Filipino.”)
  • Interrogative Form: Mag-aaral ka ba ng Filipino? (“Are you going to study Filipino?”)

Ba is added either at the end of the sentence, or after the verb or the noun.

In the following examples, ba is positioned at the end of the sentence.

  • Simple Form: Nag-aaral ka. (“You are studying.”)
  • Interrogative Form: Nag-aaral ka ba? (“Are you studying?”)
  • Imperative Form: Mag-aral ka. (“Go and study.”)
  • Interrogative Form: Mag-aaral ka ba? (“Are you going to study?”)

What’s unique about the way Filipinos communicate is that they can do so even with just a single word (sometimes even with no words at all!). Let’s take this scenario, for example. 

A man just got home and asked his wife if their dog (who wasn’t feeling well) finally decided to eat.

Husband: Kumain ba? (“Did she eat?”) 

Wife: Oo. (“Yes.”)

If the husband only said Kumain? It would still be a valid sentence and would be understood as Kumain ba?

It gets crazier with this typical exchange by the elevator.

Man 1: Bababa ba? (“Is it going down?”)

Man 2: Bababa. (“It is going down.”)

Golly! That’s seven successive instances of a single syllable!

A Little Girl Counting on Her Fingers

Seven syllables. Did I count that right?

It’s not all the time, though, that ba is necessary. Just like in most languages, you can just add a question mark at the end of a declarative sentence to turn it into a question, particularly if the question has a tone of surprise to it.

  • Simple Form: Nag-aaral si Arlene ng Filipino. (“Arlene is studying Filipino.”)
  • Interrogative Form: Nag-aaral si Arlene ng Filipino? (“Arlene is studying Filipino?”)
  • Imperative Form: Mag-aral ka ng Filipino. (“Go and study Filipino.”)
  • Interrogative Form: Mag-aaral ka ng Filipino? (“You’re going to study Filipino?”)
A Man Looking Surprised at a Paper He’s Reading

Pumasa ako sa Filipino? (“I passed Filipino?”)

6. Translation Exercises

In this section, we’re going to apply what we’ve learned about Tagalog sentence structure so far. Again, there are several ways to arrange words in a Filipino sentence, but let’s just use the one that’s often used in casual conversations.

1. I study. ____________________

2. I study Tagalog. ____________________

3. I study Tagalog every day .____________________

4. I study Tagalog every day using FilipinoPod101. ____________________

5. I study Tagalog every day at home using FilipinoPod101. ____________________

6. I study Tagalog with my friend every day at home using FilipinoPod101. ____________________

Woman Using a Translation App on Her Phone

Okay, Siri, please translate…Oh, wait, you’re not Siri.

ANSWER:

1. I study. Nag-aaral ako.

2. I study Tagalog. Nag-aaral ako ng Tagalog.

3. I study Tagalog every day. Araw-araw akong nag-aaral ng Tagalog. (Remember how prepositional phrases should go at the beginning of the sentence?)

4. I study Tagalog every day with FilipinoPod101. Araw-araw akong nag-aaral ng Tagalog gamit ang FilipinoPod101.

5. I study Tagalog every day at home with FilipinoPod101. Araw-araw akong nag-aaral sa bahay ng Tagalog gamit ang FilipinoPod101.

6.  I study Tagalog with my friend every day at home with FilipinoPod101. Araw-araw akong nag-aaral sa bahay ng Tagalog gamit ang FilipinoPod101 kasama ang kaibigan ko.

7. FilipinoPod101 Will Help Ease the Confusion

We did our best to make this guide as simple and easy as possible for you. However, we also believe that one short post about Tagalog sentence structure can only do so much. But that’s why FilipinoPod101 is here, isn’t it? 

With FilipinoPod101, you can learn more than just how to arrange words in sentences. If you sign up today, you’ll gain exclusive access to a number of learning resources you won’t find elsewhere. This includes an introduction to the Filipino language, a few key Filipino phrases, and unique articles designed to help you learn Tagalog in a fun and interesting way.

And then there’s the Premium PLUS program that’s designed especially for students who want to develop their Filipino writing and speaking skills in just a short period of  time. What are you waiting for? If you want to learn more about Filipino sentence structure or polish your Tagalog conversation skills, don’t think twice about signing up at FilipinoPod101 today!

What are your first impressions about Tagalog word order and sentence structure? Let us know in the comments!

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A Guide to Delivering the Perfect Compliment in Tagalog

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Knowing how to give the right compliment is a skill. In a country like the Philippines, where many people seem to find receiving compliments unnerving or awkward, it’s especially important to learn how to express praise or admiration without coming across as sarcastic. And that’s what this post is all about—learning how to deliver the perfect compliment in Tagalog.

To be honest, Pinoys aren’t really good at receiving compliments. We’re somewhat modest and very shy when it comes to claiming things we’re good at. Most of us even consider suspicion as an accepted mode of receiving compliments. It must have something to do with trust issues, but regardless, it can’t be denied that giving and receiving compliments is not a forte of many Filipinos.

The good news is that times are a-changin’, and nowadays, if you know the right words to say to praise or admire a Filipino friend, you can expect some love and appreciation in return. In connection with that, we’ve compiled twenty-one Filipino compliments that will surely make your Pinoy friends feel good and love having you around all the time.

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Table of Contents

  1. Complimenting Someone’s Look
  2. Complimenting Someone’s Work
  3. Complimenting Someone’s Skills
  4. How to Make Your Compliments Sound More Sincere
  5. What to Expect After Giving Compliments
  6. Learn to Craft the Perfect Tagalog Compliments with FilipinoPod101

1. Complimenting Someone’s Look

Compliments

Studies show that Pinoys are more conscious than ever about their appearance. This was one of the main findings of the Men Revolution 2013 study done by an international company that provided consumer insight. This is accurate, since most Filipinos, particularly men, are very particular about the way they look and smell; they believe that both factors play an important role in their career. Here are several ways you can compliment a Filipino friend on the way he or she looks.

1- Astig ang porma mo ah!

The word astig is actually Tagalog for “tough,” although in many cases, it’s used to refer to something cool or awesome.

When to use it: A friend comes along and you notice that he’s especially fashionable today. You greet him and say: Uy, astig ang porma mo ngayon ah. (“You look cool, man.”)

2- Ang pogi/ganda mo naman.

When to use it: You’re going to a party with a friend and you notice that she looks prettier than usual. You go ahead and say to her: Ang ganda mo naman. (“You’re looking pretty!”)

3- Bagay sa iyo ang suot mo.

The word bagay has two meanings in Tagalog, the first one being “thing” and the other one being “match.” In this case, we’re talking about the latter.

When to use it: It seems that your colleague has really spent some time fixing herself up, making sure every piece of her outfit matches well with the others. You show your appreciation to her by saying: Bagay sa’yo ‘yang suot mong blouse. (“That blouse looks perfect on you!”)

A Man and Woman Flirting During Autumn

Girl: Bagay ba? Boy: Oo, bagay…tayo. (Girl: “Perfect match, right?” Boy: “Indeed…we are.”)

4- “Blooming” ka ngayon ah.

Blooming is a Tagalog expression used to describe a person who’s especially happy, particularly as a result of being in a romantic relationship.

When to use it: Your friend came to work looking jollier than usual. Is she in love? You say: Mukhang ‘blooming’ ka ngayon ah? (“Your face seems to be glowing today.”)

5- Ang kinis ng pisngi mo!

When to use it: You’re impressed with your friend’s smooth skin and want to find out their secret. Without sounding too obvious, you compliment them instead: Ang kinis ng pisngi mo! (“You know what, you really have beautiful and healthy skin.”)

6- Sumiseksi ka yata!

When to use it: You noticed that your friend has been losing weight—and looking good because of it—for quite some time now. Not wanting to sound impolite, you simply say: Sumiseksi ka yata! (“I noticed you’re getting sexier every day!”)

Just make sure you’re not a married man saying this to a female colleague.

7- Marunong ka talagang pumili.

When to use it: You’re really amazed at your friend’s ability to mix and match clothes so that they look good in anything they wear. You tell your friend: Marunong ka talagang pumili ng mga isusuot mo. (“You really have good taste, you know?”)

A Man and Woman Shopping at the Mall Together

Marunong ka talagang pumili? (“You really have good taste, you know?”)

2. Complimenting Someone’s Work

Filipinos are no question some of the most hardworking people in the world. Perhaps it’s because of pride or modesty that Pinoys go out of their way to avoid being embarrassed, but regardless of the reasons, there’s no doubt that Pinoys will almost always do anything they can to add value to their work. Here are some Tagalog compliments you can use to show appreciation for your coworkers.

1- Ang galing mo ah.

When to use it: Your colleague did an exceptionally good job, so you go to him and say: Ang galing mo ah! (“You were pretty good back there!”)

2- Gusto ko yang ginawa mo.

When to use it: You find a teammate’s contribution really helpful. To show your appreciation, you say: Gusto ko ‘yang ginawa mo. Malaking tulong talaga ‘yan. (“I really like what you did. That will really help us big time.”)

3- Wow! Ang ganda ng gawa mo!

Gawa is Tagalog for “work,” “act,” or “deed.” In this context, it could refer to a masterpiece, such as handicraft, artwork, a song, a poem, or any similar project.

When to use it: This is just another version of the previous example. The only difference is that you’re really impressed this time: Wow! Ang ganda naman ng sinulat mong tula! (“Wow! This is a really great piece of poetry you’ve written!”)

4- Ipagpatuloy mo ‘yan ha.

When to use it: This can be used as a follow-up to the previous compliment: Gusto ko ‘yang ginawa mo. Ipagpatuloy mo ‘yan ha? (“I really like what you did there. Keep it up, okay?”)

5- Turuan mo naman ako.

When to use it: This is an indirect way to tell someone that they’re better than anyone else in the room. You kindly ask them to teach you how to do something that you’ve observed they’re very good at: Turuan mo naman akong sumayaw. (“Please teach me how to dance.”)

Two People Engaging in Martial Arts

Turuan niyo po ako, Sifu. (“Please teach me, Sifu.”)

6- Mahusay.

When to use it: A subordinate showed some impressive stuff at work. You respond accordingly by saying: Mahusay. (“Excellent!”) or Mahusay itong trabaho mo. (“You did an excellent job here.”)

7- Da best ka talaga!

This is like saying “You are amazing” in Tagalog. So, when do you use it?

When to use it: Once again, your colleague has shown that they can be trusted with stuff at work. You show your appreciation and amazement by saying: Da best ka talaga! (“You’re really the best at what you do!”)

3. Complimenting Someone’s Skills

Not only are Pinoys hardworking, but they’re also very skillful. In fact, there are dozens of Filipino animators who have made it big in Hollywood! When it comes to skilled work, Filipinos are exceptional—whether at home, in school, or in the workplace. Wondering how you can show appreciation for someone’s skills using compliments in Filipino? Here’s how.

1- Ang sarap nitong niluto mo!

When to use it: The way to a Filipino man’s heart is through his stomach. The way to a Filipina’s heart? Through a sincere compliment on her cooking (or her mom’s). Filipinos love inviting guests over to a meal. When you know you’re in for some delectable treat, show your appreciation by saying: Ang sarap nitong niluto mo! (“This is top-notch cooking!”)

People Eating

Ang sarap po ng luto niyo, mama…este…ma’am. (“This is top-notch cooking, mom…I mean, ma’am.”)

2- Ang galing mo na ah!

When to use it: Someone you know is showing obvious improvements on a craft they’re learning. You compliment them by saying: Ang galing mo ng mag Tagalog ah! (“I can see your Tagalog has improved.”)

3- Ang ganda talaga ng boses mo.

When to use it: A friend of yours once again showcases their singing skills. Captivated, you tell that friend: Alam mo, ang ganda talaga ng boses mo. (“You know what? Your voice is really good.”)

4- Saan ka natuto niyan?

When to use it: This is another indirect way to compliment a person. You find out that your friend is really good at calligraphy. You’re impressed and ask her where she learned the skill: Saan ka natuto mag-calligraphy? (“Where/How did you learn calligraphy?”)

5- Ikaw ba gumawa nito? Astig!

When to use it: You’re impressed at another person’s work, but you’re too shy to directly compliment them on it. You say: Ikaw ba gumawa nito? Astig! (“Is this your work? Cool!”)

6- Ang galing mo talagang magpatawa!

When to use it: You sincerely appreciate a friend’s sense of humor, so you say to him: Ang galing mo talagang magpatawa. (“You really have a great sense of humor, you know.”)

7- Bilib talaga ako sa’yo.

When to use it: You’re really impressed by the way your friend handles tough life situations. You compliment them by saying: Bilib talaga ako sa’yo. Hindi ka madaling sumuko. (“I’m really amazed at how well you handle things. You don’t easily give up.”)

4. How to Make Your Compliments Sound More Sincere

Positive Feelings

There’s nothing more repulsive than false flattery, but showing real appreciation can also be a challenge. This is especially true if you grew up in a household where giving and receiving praise wasn’t the norm. Yes, Pinoys can be gullible sometimes, but most can actually tell when they’re being genuinely appreciated. Here are practical tips on how to deliver heartfelt compliments in Tagalog.

1- Be authentic.

The most natural way to offer praise is to just be yourself. Even if you’re truly sincere, you might not come across that way if you’re giving a compliment and trying to impress the other person at the same time. The goal of giving a compliment is to make the other person feel good, and not the other way around. Before praising a colleague for a job well done, make sure you’re doing it because they deserve the praise and that you’re genuinely happy for them.

2- Don’t exaggerate.

When giving compliments, be sure to offer one that’s appropriate for the situation. That said, avoid overdoing things and giving a string of compliments when a simple statement of adoration is enough. Giving out a stream of flattering remarks might be a good way to establish that you’re a nice person, but it also has the danger of doing the opposite. Avoid giving a barrage of compliments to the same person, and be careful not to exaggerate things. The more words you say, the higher the chances they’ll lose their impact.

3- Be specific.

Broad compliments tend to be vague. Avoid any awkwardness by getting specific with your compliments. Instead of simply saying, Ang talino mo talaga (“You’re really smart”), say something like, Napahanga mo ako sa presentation mo sa meeting kanina (“I was impressed with your presentation during the meeting earlier”). The more specific your compliment, the more your recipient will treat it as legitimate.

4- Timing is everything.

An effective compliment involves proper timing. Telling a coworker how much you love his new jacket while you’re at the pantry relaxing over a cup of coffee is great. Doing so when he’s in the middle of a very important task? Not so.

5- Follow up with a gentle shoulder tap.

Don’t underestimate the power of physical touch when giving compliments. Sometimes, a gentle tap on the shoulder can say more about how you feel. But as mentioned, always consider time and place before doing so, as a friendly touch can have an unfavorable effect in the wrong situation.

Woman Swearing

Nagsasabi ako ng totoo. Peksman! (“I’m telling the truth. I promise!”)

5. What to Expect After Giving Compliments

As mentioned already, Filipinos aren’t used to receiving compliments, so don’t be surprised if someone you know blushes after you’ve complimented them.

Most Pinoys will even reply with suspicion: May kailangan ka, ‘no? (“So, what is it that you need this time?”), Hindi nga? (“Really?”)

What do you do when people aren’t so welcoming of your positive appraisal of them? Simply reassure them that you’re sincere: Hindi, totoo. Seryoso ako. (“No, really. I’m serious.”)

The good thing is that most Pinoys also know when you’re being sincere, so as long as you’re authentic, you have nothing to worry about. And when they say, “Thank you,” simply respond with a polite Walang anuman. (“You’re welcome.”)

    Speaking of polite, you might find this short video on Filipino manners really helpful.

6. Learn to Craft the Perfect Tagalog Compliments with FilipinoPod101

Learning how to give Filipino compliments is easier when you have someone teaching and guiding you. What we gave you here is just a quick guide on giving Filipino complimenting phrases. If you want to develop your skills further, there’s no better way to do so than with FilipinoPod101.com.

With FilipinoPod101, you’ll learn about so much more than compliments in Filipino. You’ll also get to know the Filipino culture a lot better, which will help you understand how to deal with Pinoys in social situations. FilipinoPod101 provides resources that will help you improve your Tagalog vocabulary, as well as your pronunciation and speaking skills. A lesson library where you can have access to practical tips is also available. For example, see our lessons on what survival phrases to use when traveling or when you’re caught in an emergency.

Need to master your Filipino a little bit faster? That’s where our Premium PLUS feature MyTeacher comes in. With Premium PLUS, you get access to more than 120 hours of audio and video courses and Tagalog study tools.

So, what do you think about our guide on giving the perfect compliment in Tagalog? Feel free to let us know in the comments section below! Oh, and don’t forget to visit our blog page for more articles like this!

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20 Filipino Angry Phrases, Plus Popular Tagalog Swear Words

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Want to learn some Tagalog swear words? Want to know how we Pinoys get angry and how we express our frustration? Well, you’ve come to the right place.

Before anything else, consider this quote by General Douglas MacArthur:

“Give me 10,000 Filipino soldiers and I will conquer the world.”

These words of the great American general are a confirmation of the bravery of the Filipino guerilla men and women who stood their ground against the Japanese colonizers during the Second World War. It’s not a surprise that MacArthur was impressed by the resilience and bravery of the Filipinos. After all, Pinoys are considered to be a “warlike” people. From the time of Lapu-Lapu to the days of heroes like Jose Rizal and Andres Bonifacio, Filipinos have never failed to show the world that they are no pushovers.

That doesn’t necessarily mean that Filipinos are always hot-headed. It only means they know when to stand up for what’s right. If you’ve been to the Philippines, you’ll agree that most Pinoys are very gentle, warmhearted, and hospitable.

Of course, they do get angry, but who doesn’t? And speaking of angry, in this article, you’ll learn how to express anger in Filipino grammar, as well as become familiar with some Tagalog swear words.

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Table of Contents

  1. Angry Imperatives
  2. Angry Warnings
  3. Angry Blames
  4. Angry Insults
  5. Describing How You Feel
  6. Popular Filipino Swear Words
  7. How Do Pinoys Keep Their Cool?
  8. Keep Calm and Learn Filipino

1. Angry Imperatives

Jose Rizal is the Epitome of Filipino Bravery and Courage

1 – Tumahimik ka!

This is the Tagalog equivalent of “Shut up!” or “You shut up!” and is used to express annoyance, particularly to someone who’s being unreasonable.

The word tumahimik means “to keep quiet,” but it’s the nearest equivalent to “shut up” since the English expression doesn’t have a direct translation in Filipino. Well, it does, but with a different meaning. It’s isara, which means “to close” or “to shut.”

    Tumahimik ka! Inuubos mo ang pasensya ko!
    “Shut up! You’re making me lose my patience!”

Variations:

  • Isara mo ang bunganga mo! (“Shut your mouth!” )
  • Huwag ka nang magsalita! (“Stop talking already!” )

2 – Tama na sabi!

There are times when you get annoyed, but the other person still keeps on bothering you. In frustration, you exclaim, Tama na sabi! This literally means “I said stop already!” Tama in this statement means “enough,” so, in a sense, Tama na sabi could mean, “I said enough already!”

Variations:

  • Tama na! (“Enough!” )

This is the quickest way to tell someone to quit annoying or angering you. Word for word, it translates to “Enough already!”

  • Tumigil ka! (“Stop!” )

3 – Huwag mo akong pakialaman!

People can sometimes be meddlesome, interfering with other people’s lives when they shouldn’t. Pinoys can be nosy at times, too, placing excessive interest in another person’s private affairs. At the same time, Filipinos can be very private people and easily get annoyed if they notice that you’re being obtrusive.

When that happens, prepare to hear the words, Huwag mo akong pakialaman! This translates to “Do not interfere in my business!” and is one of the best angry Filipino phrases for a situation like this.

    Hindi ikaw ang nanay ko kaya huwag mo akong pakialaman!
    “You’re not my mother, so mind your own business!”

Variations:

  • Huwag kang makialam! (“Do not interfere!” )
  • Intindihin mo ang sarili mo! (“Mind your own business!” )

4 – Tumabi ka diyan!

Most Pinoys avoid fights as much as possible. Being peace-loving people, they would even go out of their way to be the middleman when two people are fighting. But then again, most people don’t like it when you’re meddling with their personal affairs, especially when it involves them quarreling with another person.

This is where this angry phrase comes in. Tumabi is a verb that means “to step aside,” although it could also mean “to get out of the way.”

    Tumabi ka diyan kung ayaw mong madamay.
    “Out of my way if you don’t want to get involved.”

Variations:

  • Huwag kang humarang diyan! (“Don’t block my way!” )

Harang is Filipino for “obstruction.” You say this phrase to someone if you don’t want them blocking your view, either from another person or from something they wish to see.

  • Tabi! (“Step aside!” )

Tabi can be translated to “beside” or “aside.” In this case, the word is an order for someone to step aside.

  • Alis! (“Move!” )

Alis is literally “to leave.” When you don’t want someone in your way, you say Alis so they’ll move out of the way or leave.

2. Angry Warnings

1 – Huwag mong hintayin na mapuno ako!

These are some angry words in Filipino to say if you’re starting to lose your patience with someone. It’s a warning that tells another person that something bad might happen to them if they don’t quit bugging you.

The root word for mapuno is puno, meaning “full.” This phrase, in essence, implies being full of anger and exploding. It’s like saying, “Don’t wait for me to lose my patience,” or “Don’t wait for me to explode!”

Variations:

  • Punong-puno na ako sa’yo! (“I am so full of you!” )

In English, saying “I’m full of it!” implies that you’ve lost your patience with someone who keeps breaking their promises. This Filipino expression, however, is that of exasperation.

  • Malapit na akong sumabog! (“I am about to explode!” )

This Piece of Machine Is Literally Going to Explode Once She Throws It

2 – Isa na lang!

“One more and I’m going to blow!” This is what this angry warning is all about.

Variations:

  • Isang-isa na lang! (“You’ve run out of chances!” )

This basically means the same thing. The repetition is for emphasis.

  • Isa…dalawa…(“One…two…” )

Counting down to warn someone is very common in Filipino culture. It’s a major part of the “Behave or Else” parenting style of many Filipino parents.

3 – Lagot ka sa akin mamaya.

The word lagot has several meanings. It could mean “to snap” as with a rope, or “to fall.” When used as a word of warning, the latter is the more appropriate meaning; here, it means to fail or to drop someone.

To say Lagot ka sa akin mamaya to someone is telling that person that they’re going to be really sorry for what they’ve done. The word mamaya means “later.” Literally translated, it would mean, “I’m going to drop you/break you/cut you off!”

    Lagot ka sa akin mamaya ‘pag hindi ka pa tumigil diyan!
    “You’ll be sorry if you don’t quit doing that!”

Variations:

  • Hala ka!

There’s no direct translation of the word hala in English. In Tagalog, however, hala is an interjection used to warn or frighten someone.

  • Humanda ka!

The verb humanda means “to be ready.” When used as an expression of anger, it’s like telling the other person “You better be ready for what’s coming to you!”

4 – Hihintayin kita sa labas.

Most Filipinos know that there’s an appropriate place to express anger. So when someone is angry with a peer or a colleague, they won’t just fight with the other person right there and then, especially where someone in higher authority might see them. Instead, they’ll warn the other person that they’ll be waiting for them outside the building.

It’s Normal to Encounter Different Types of Personalities in the Workplace

  • Working in an office will allow you to meet different types of people, some of whom are easy to work with, and others not so much. Learning how to use Filipino words in the workplace will help you avoid conflict or resolve conflicts quickly in case they do arise.
  • Humanda ka, at hihintayin kita sa labas!
    “You better be ready ‘coz I’m going to wait for you outside!”

Variations:

  • Kita tayo sa labas.

Kita is the verb for “to see.” This is both a warning and invitation, informing the other party that you plan on seeing them outside.

  • Magkikita din tayo mamaya.

“We’re still going to see each other later anyway.” This is more of a threat that warns the other person they can’t get away from you.

  • The last two angry warnings are more of a threat. Should someone threaten you with the same words, don’t hesitate to seek help immediately.

3. Angry Blames

1 – Ano ba’ng iniisip mo?!

This, in essence, is letting the other person know that you find them stupid. The root word for iniisip is isip, which means “to think.” Asking another person what they’re thinking is sarcastically implying that they’re not focusing or are not thinking at all.

    Binangga mo ang kotse ko! Ano ba ang iniisip mo?
    “You hit my car! What were you thinking?”

Variations:

  • Nag-iisip ka ba? (“Are you even thinking?” )
  • Hindi ka talaga nag-iisip! (“You’re not using your brain!” )

Man Yelling

(Ano ba ang iniisip mo?!)

2 – Kasalanan mo ang lahat ng ito!

These are very critical words and are often said by a person who has already erupted in anger and frustration. It translates to “This is all your fault!”

    Naubos ang pera natin! Kasalanan mo ang lahat ng ito!
    “We are bankrupt, and this is all your fault!”

Variations:

  • Wala nang dapat sisihin dito kundi ikaw! (“There’s no one else to blame here but you!” )

The root word for sisihin is sisi, which means “to blame.”

  • Wala ka ng ginawang tama! (“You never did anything right!” )

3 – Dapat kasi nakinig ka!

When someone failed to listen to advice or instruction you gave them, and they’ve ended up messing things up, this is what you say to them.

    Tingnan mo. Nasira tuloy. Dapat kasi nakinig ka!
    “Look what happened. It’s broken now. You should have listened to me.”

Variations:

  • Makinig ka naman kasi paminsan-minsan. (“You should try listening to advice from time to time.” )
  • Dapat talaga hindi ako nakinig sa’yo. (“I shouldn’t have listened to you!” )

This is what you say when the roles are reversed, when someone gave you bad advice and you listened. Out of anger, you say: Dapat talaga hindi ako nakinig sa’yo. Napahamak tuloy ako. In essence, it’s saying, “I’m in trouble now because I listened to you!”

4 – Iyan ang sinasabi ko.

Iyan ang sinasabi ko is directly translated to “That’s what I was saying.” But as an expression of frustration and sarcasm, the more accurate interpretation would be, “What did I say?”

    Iyan ang sinasabi ko! Hindi mo kasi sinunod ang payo ko. Nagkasakit ka tuloy.
    “What did I say? You didn’t follow my advice, and now you’re sick!”

If Only You Listened

Variations:

  • Ano ba’ng sinabi ko sa’yo? (“What did I tell you?” )
  • Sabi sa’yo eh! (“I told you!” )

4. Angry Insults

How better to let someone know that you’re angry in Filipino than with insults?

1 – Hayop ka!

The word hayop can be translated to either “animal” or “beast.” You’ll know a Filipino is already very angry when they start blurting out these words.

Variations:

  • Animal ka! (“You animal!” ) or (“You beast!” )
  • Demonyo ka! (“You devil!” )

Demonyo means “demon” or “devil,” and since the devil is often portrayed as a beast, this is considered a good variation of the main phrase Hayop ka!

2 – Batugan! (“You lazy bastard!” )

While Filipinos are generally hardworking and industrious, many Pinoys can be slothful at times. This angry expression is one proof of that.

    Kumilos ka! Huwag kang batugan!
    “Do something! Don’t be a lazy bastard!”

Variations:

  • Tamad!

Tamad is just another term for batugan, which basically means “lazy” or “indolent.”

The Perfect Illustration for Someone Batugan

3 – Wala kang kwenta! (“You’re useless!” )

This is quite similar to the previous expression, except it’s more of an angry expression toward a person who, despite his or her efforts, doesn’t seem to do anything right. Kwenta can be interpreted as “count” or “value,” so to say that someone is walang kwenta is saying that they have no value or don’t count for anything.

Variations:

  • Wala kang silbi! (“You’re worthless!” )

Silbi means “to serve,” so Wala kang silbi! is the same as saying, “You don’t serve any purpose.”

  • Isa kang inutil! (“You’re one worthless person!” )

Inutil is derived from the same Spanish word, which means “useless” or “inservible.”

4 – Matapobre!

This is often an insult to someone who is full of himself and tends to look down on others. There’s no direct translation of matapobre in English, although it could mean “snobbish.” Essentially, matapobre is more of an idiomatic expression.

It came from the words mata (“eye” ) and pobre (“poor” ). Some scholars say that the word mata might have come from the Spanish matar (“to kill” ). In that sense, a person who’s matapobre is an elitist or someone who looks down on poor people.

Isa kang matapobre!

Variations:

  • Mapagmata (disdainful toward others)
  • Mapangmata (haughty)
  • Mapagmataas (proud)

5. Describing How You Feel

Negative Verbs

1 – Naiinis ako.

The verb mainis means “to be annoyed.” Naiinis ako means “I’m annoyed,” and you say it when you’re really pissed off already.

Variations:

  • Nakakainis ka! (“You’re so annoying!” )
  • Iniinis mo ako! (“You’re annoying me!” )
  • Nakakairita ka! (“You’re very irritating!” )

Another way of expressing annoyance in Tagalog is by saying Nakakairita ka! with irita being the Filipino word for “irritate.”

2 – Galit ako.

Galit is Filipino for “angry” or “mad.” By saying Galit ako, you’re saying, “I’m mad” or “I’m angry.”

Variations:

  • Ginagalit mo ako! (“You are angering me!” )
  • Galit ako sa’yo! (“I’m mad at you!” )
  • Pinapainit mo ang ulo ko!

Sometimes, instead of saying Galit ako, you can also say Pinapainit mo ang ulo ko. The verb pinapainit means “causing something to get hot.” Ulo is Filipino for “head,” so literally speaking, this phrase means, “You’re causing my head to get hot!”

3 – Nanggigigil ako!

The word gigil is used to describe an overwhelming feeling that comes over you, particularly when you see something cute. It’s also used to describe having an overwhelming feeling of disgust, anger, or rage, to the point that your body is shaking as a result. When you say Nanggigigil ako! what you’re trying to say is, “I’m shaking in anger right now!”

  • Nakakagigil ka!

This means that another person is causing you to feel so much anger and frustration. It doesn’t have a direct equivalent in English, but it could be translated to, “You are so frustrating!”

4 – Ayoko na!

Saying Ayoko na! is telling everyone that enough is enough. The word Ayoko is a contraction of the phrase Ayaw ko, with ayaw meaning “to back out from,” “to reject,” or “to refuse.” It may also mean “do not.” In saying Ayaw ko na, you’re literally saying, “I do not want (any of it) anymore,” or “I quit!”

Variations:

  • Suko na ako! (“I surrender!” )

Man Ripping Up Newspaper in Anger

(Suko na ako!)

6. Popular Filipino Swear Words

Every culture has its own list of swear words. In the Philippines, we also have our own Filipino swear words. This isn’t an exhaustive list, but it should be enough to give you an idea of the most commonly used negative expressions in Tagalog.

1 – Gago!

Calling someone gago is saying that the person is stupid or foolish, someone who doesn’t think before he acts. This is one of the most common angry words in Tagalog. It’s also a very insulting one because it’s like telling another person that he’s dull or unintelligent. The feminine version of the word is gaga. It translates to “You stupid fool!”

    → Ay, gago!
    “What an idiot!”

    → Napaka-gago mo!
    “You are so stupid!”

    → Gago ka ba?
    “Are you dumb?”

2 – Lintik!

This is Filipino for “lightning,” so in a sense, it’s wishing for your enemy to be struck by lightning. It’s like saying, “How I hope you die!”

    → Lintik ka! Tamaan ka sana ng kidlat!
    “May lightning strike you!”

Sometimes, the longer version is used to describe someone or something you hate so much. In this case, the phrase is Tinamaan ng lintik, which can be interpreted as “d*mned.”

    → Huwag mong ipapakita pa iyang tinamaan ng lintik na pagmumukha mo!
    “Don’t ever dare show that cursed face of yours!”

3 – Putik!

This is a lighter version of the word puta, which is Spanish for “whore.” Pinoys often modify certain curse words so as not to sound too vulgar. The word putik is actually Filipino for “mud.” As a curse word, it expresses frustration over someone or something ill-favored that you’ve encountered.

    → Putik na buhay naman ito!

This literally means, “What a rotten life!”

4 – Buwisit!

This is an exclamation for someone who’s had a bad day. It’s said that the word came from the Fukien phrase “bo ui sit,” which means having no food or not having any clothes on. It has since evolved to mean anyone or anything annoying or frustrating.

    → Buwisit na trabaho ‘to!
    “Curse this job!”

    → Nakaka-buwisit ka talaga!
    “You are so annoying!”

5 – Hudas!

Hudas is Filipino for “Judas,” the disciple who betrayed his master. Calling someone a Hudas implies that the person is a traitor.

    → Hudas ka!
    “You are a traitor!”

    → Hinudas mo ako!

In Filipino culture, the word Hudas has become synonymous with “traitor” or traidor. Hinudas mo ako! literally means, “You Judas-ed me!” Or, in essence, “You betrayed me!”

6 – Leche!

Leche is Spanish for “milk,” but over time, it has become synonymous with buwisit.

    → Leche na lugar ‘to!
    “Curse this place!”

A less vulgar variation is lechugas. The direct translation of the word is “lettuce,” but as a curse word, it means the same thing as leche.

7. How Do Pinoys Keep Their Cool?

Filipinos are easy to please. A simple lambing is often enough to appease an angry spouse. A “peace offering” is sufficient in restoring a broken friendship. But how do Pinoys calm themselves when they’re angry? While Filipinos are generally friendly, they also oftentimes shy away from confrontation. Instead of dealing with the issue directly, they try to keep their cool by distracting themselves.

  • Manners and courtesy are both very important to Filipinos. One way to influence the mood of someone who’s about to get angry is to remain polite at all times. Don’t fight fire with fire, they say.

1- Watching TV

A survey done a couple of years ago revealed that most Pinoys still prefer watching TV over using the internet. And this is not a surprise, considering how sacred the living room is for the Filipino family. For most Pinoys, it’s not only a place to bond with family, but an avenue where they drown their frustrations with their favorite noontime shows or prime-time soap operas.

Filipino Families Still Prefer TV

2- Singing and Listening to Music

Most Filipinos possess good musical sense, and that’s evidenced by the fact that we have a number of world-renowned singers and musicians. And yes, one of the reasons Pinoys love singing so much is that it helps them channel their anger into something productive.

3- Hanging out with Friends

If there’s one way Pinoys relieve stress and frustration, it’s by having a good laugh with the barkada (“peer” ). Filipinos value camaraderie a lot, which is why whichever part of the world you go to, you’ll always find that there’s a Filipino community there somewhere.

4- Eating

To say that Pinoys love eating is an understatement. But yes, Pinoys are certified food-lovers. One reason is that Filipinos are naturally hospitable, which means food is central to our social life. That explains the snacks in-between meals, which we refer to as merienda. And merienda isn’t only for during the day. Most of the time, we also have our midnight snack. And you guessed it right. When we’re frustrated, one way we rid ourselves of all the feelings of exasperation inside is through food.

5- Playing

Pinoys love to have fun. Kasiyahan, or “joy,” really plays a huge role in Filipino culture. And you’ve probably heard of how resilient Filipinos are. We seem to have this knack for finding a joke regardless of how serious a situation seems. Part of our having fun is playing. Kids will do all they can to skip the afternoon nap and play outside. Even adults find time to play after work hours. For us, playing is one way we can vent our anger.

8. Keep Calm and Learn Filipino

We would never wish for anyone to feel frustrated or angry, but since frustration is a part of life and anger is inevitable, it makes sense to know how to express anger, particularly in a language you’re trying to learn.

Fortunately, you can always have FilipinoPod101 as a partner in your language-learning journey. Whether you’re learning new words, improving your pronunciation, or trying to take your Filipino grammar to another level, you can rest assured that FilipinoPod101 can provide you with all the resources you need.

This article is just one of the many helpful tools you’ll find at the FilipinoPod101 blog page. If you wish to gain access to more similar tools, don’t hesitate to sign up today.

Oh, and before we forget, please let us know in the comments section below if there are other Tagalog swear words or tips on how to swear in Filipino you wish to learn. We’d be glad to assist you!

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Essential Vocabulary for Life Events in Filipino

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What is the most defining moment you will face this year? From memories that you immortalize in a million photographs, to days you never wish to remember, one thing’s for certain: big life events change you. The great poet, Bukowski, said, “We are here to laugh at the odds and live our lives so well, that death will tremble to take us.” The older I get, the more I agree with him!

Talking about significant events in our lives is part of every person’s journey, regardless of creed or culture. If you’re planning to stay in Philippines for more than a quick visit, you’re sure to need at least a few ‘life events’ phrases that you can use. After all, many of these are shared experiences, and it’s generally expected that we will show up with good manners and warm wishes.

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Table of Contents

  1. Life Events
  2. Marriage Proposal Lines
  3. Talking About Age
  4. Conclusion

1. Life Events

Do you know how to say “Happy New Year” in Filipino? Well, the New Year is a pretty big deal that the whole world is in on! We celebrate until midnight, make mindful resolutions, and fill the night sky with the same happy words in hundreds of languages. No doubt, then, that you’ll want to know how to say it like a local!

Big life events are not all about fun times, though. Real life happens even when you’re traveling, and certain terminology will be very helpful to know. From talking about your new job to wishing your neighbors “Merry Christmas” in Filipino, here at FilipinoPod101, we’ve put together just the right vocabulary and phrases for you.

1- Birthday – kaarawan

If you’re like me, any excuse to bring out a pen and scribble a note is a good one. When there’s a birthday, even better: hello, handwriting!

Your Filipino friend will love hearing you wish them a “Happy birthday” in Filipino, but how much more will they appreciate a thoughtful written message? Whether you write it on their Facebook wall or buy a cute card, your effort in Filipino is sure to get them smiling! Write it like this:

Maligayang kaarawan

Older Woman Blowing Out Candles on a Birthday Cake Surrounded by Friends.

Now that you know the words, I challenge you to put them to music and sing your own “Happy birthday” song in Filipino! It’s not impossible to figure out even more lyrics, once you start discovering the language from scratch.

2- Buy – bumili

If there’s a special occasion, you might want to buy somebody a gift. As long as you’ve checked out Filipino etiquette on gift-giving (do a Google search for this!), it will be a lovely gesture. If you’re not sure what to buy, how about the awesome and universally-appealing gift of language? That’s a gift that won’t stop giving!

Two Women at a Counter in a Bookstore, One Buying a Book

3- Retire – magretiro

If you’re planning to expand your mind and retire in Philippines, you can use this word to tell people why you seem to be on a perpetual vacation!

Retirement is also a great time to learn a new language, don’t you think? And you don’t have to do it alone! These days it’s possible to connect to a vibrant learning community at the click of a button. The added benefit of a Daily Dose of Language is that it keeps your brain cells alive and curious about the world. After all, it’s never too late to realize those long-ignored dreams of traveling the globe…

4- Graduation – pagtatapos

When attending a graduation ceremony in Philippines, be prepared for a lot of formal language! It will be a great opportunity to listen carefully and see if you can pick up differences from the everyday Filipino you hear.

Lecturer or University Dean Congratulating and Handing Over Graduation Certificate to a Young Man on Graduation Day.

5- Promotion – pagtaas ng ranggo

Next to vacation time, receiving a promotion is the one career highlight almost everyone looks forward to. And why wouldn’t you? Sure, it means more responsibility, but it also means more money and benefits and – the part I love most – a change of scenery! Even something as simple as looking out a new office window would boost my mood.

6- Anniversary – anibersaryo

Some anniversaries we anticipate with excitement, others with apprehension. They are days marking significant events in our lives that can be shared with just one person, or with a whole nation. Whether it’s a special day for you and a loved one, or for someone else you know, this word is crucial to know if you want to wish them a happy anniversary in Filipino.

7- Funeral – libing

We tend to be uncomfortable talking about funerals in the west, but it’s an important conversation for families to have. Around the world, there are many different customs and rituals for saying goodbye to deceased loved ones – some vastly different to our own. When traveling in Philippines, if you happen to find yourself the unwitting observer of a funeral, take a quiet moment to appreciate the cultural ethos; even this can be an enriching experience for you.

8- Travel – bumiyahe

Travel – my favorite thing to do! Everything about the experience is thrilling and the best cure for boredom, depression, and uncertainty about your future. You will surely be forever changed, fellow traveler! But you already know this, don’t you? Well, now that you’re on the road to total Filipino immersion, I hope you’ve downloaded our IOS apps and have your Nook Book handy to keep yourself entertained on those long bus rides.

Young Female Tourist with a Backpack Taking a Photo of the Arc de Triomphe

9- Graduate – makatapos sa pag-aaral

If you have yet to graduate from university, will you be job-hunting in Philippines afterward? Forward-looking companies sometimes recruit talented students who are still in their final year. Of course, you could also do your final year abroad as an international student – an amazing experience if you’d love to be intellectually challenged and make a rainbow of foreign friends!

10- Wedding – kasal

One of the most-loved traditions that humans have thought up, which you’ll encounter anywhere in the world, is a wedding. With all that romance in the air and months spent on preparations, a wedding is typically a feel-good affair. Two people pledge their eternal love to each other, ladies cry, single men look around for potential partners, and everybody has a happy day of merrymaking.

Ah, but how diverse we are in our expression of love! You will find more wedding traditions around the world than you can possibly imagine. From reciting love quotes to marrying a tree, the options leave no excuse to be boring!

Married Couple During Reception, Sitting at Their Table While a Young Man Gives a Wedding Speech

11- Move – lumipat

I love Philippines, but I’m a nomad and tend to move around a lot, even within one country. What are the biggest emotions you typically feel when moving house? The experts say moving is a highly stressful event, but I think that depends on the circumstances. Transitional periods in our lives are physically and mentally demanding, but changing your environment is also an exciting adventure that promises new tomorrows!

12- Be born – ipinanganak

I was not born in 1993, nor was I born in Asia. I was born in the same year as Aishwarya Rai, Akon, and Monica Lewinsky, and on the same continent as Freddy Mercury. When and where were you born? More importantly – can you say it in Filipino?

13- Get a job – makakuha ng trabaho

The thought of looking for a job in a new country can be daunting, but English speakers are in great demand in Philippines – you just have to do some research, make a few friends and get out there! Also, arming yourself with a few Filipino introductions that you can both say and write will give you a confidence boost. For example, can you write your name in Filipino?

Group of People in Gear that Represent a Number of Occupations.

14- Die – mamatay

Death is a universal experience and the final curtain on all other life events. How important is it, then, to fully live before we die? If all you have is a passport, a bucket list, and a willingness to learn some lingo, you can manifest those dreams!

15- Home – bahay

If home is where the heart is, then my home is on a jungle island completely surrounded by the turquoise ocean. Right now, though, home is an isolation room with a view of half a dry palm tree and a tangle of telephone wires.

If you’re traveling to Philippines for an extended stay, you’ll soon be moving into a new home quite unlike anything you’ve experienced before!

Large, Double-Story House with Lit Windows.

16- Job – trabaho

What job do you do? Does it allow you much time for travel, or for working on this fascinating language that has (so rightfully) grabbed your attention? Whatever your job, you are no doubt contributing to society in a unique way. If you’re doing what you love, you’re already on the road to your dream. If not, just remember that every single task is one more skill to add to your arsenal. With that attitude, your dream job is coming!

17- Birth – kapanganakan

Random question: do you know the birth rate of Philippines?

If you’re lucky enough to be invited to see a friend’s baby just after they are born, you’ll have all my respect and all my envy. There is nothing cuter! Depending on which part of the country you’re in, you may find yourself bearing witness to some pretty unexpected birth customs. Enjoy this privilege!

Crying Newborn Baby Held By a Doctor or Nurse in a Hospital Theatre

18- Engaged – makisali

EE Cummings said, “Lovers alone wear sunlight,” and I think that’s most true at the moment she says “yes.” Getting engaged is something young girls dream of with stars in their eyes, and it truly is a magical experience – from the proposal, to wearing an engagement ring, to the big reveal!

In the world of Instagram, there’s no end to the antics as imaginative couples try more and more outrageous ways to share their engagement with the world. I love an airport flashmob, myself, but I’d rather be proposed to on a secluded beach – salt, sand, and all!

Engagement customs around the world vary greatly, and Philippines is no exception when it comes to interesting traditions. Learning their unique romantic ways will inspire you for when your turn comes.

Speaking of romance, do you know how to say “Happy Valentine’s Day” in Filipino?

19- Marry – magpakasal

The one you marry will be the gem on a shore full of pebbles. They will be the one who truly mirrors your affection, shares your visions for the future, and wants all of you – the good, the bad and the inexplicable.

From thinking up a one-of-a-kind wedding, to having children, to growing old together, finding a twin flame to share life with is quite an accomplishment! Speaking of which…

2. Marriage Proposal Lines

Marriage Proposal Lines

Ah, that heart-stopping moment when your true love gets down on one knee to ask for your hand in marriage, breathlessly hoping that you’ll say “Yes!” If you haven’t experienced that – well, it feels pretty darn good, is all I can say! If you’re the one doing the asking, though, you’ve probably had weeks of insomnia agonizing over the perfect time, location and words to use.

Man on His Knee Proposing to a Woman on a Bridge.

How much more care should be taken if your love is from a different culture to yours? Well, by now you know her so well, that most of it should be easy to figure out. As long as you’ve considered her personal commitment to tradition, all you really need is a few words from the heart. Are you brave enough to say them in Filipino?

3. Talking About Age

Talking about Age

Part of the wonder of learning a new language is having the ability to strike up simple conversations with strangers. Asking about age in this context feels natural, as your intention is to practice friendly phrases – just be mindful of their point of view!

When I was 22, I loved being asked my age. Nowadays, if someone asks, I say, “Well, I’ve just started my fifth cat life.” Let them ponder that for a while.

In Philippines, it’s generally not desirable to ask an older woman her age for no good reason, but chatting about age with your peers is perfectly normal. Besides, you have to mention your birthday if you want to be thrown a birthday party!

4. Conclusion

Well, there you have it! With so many great new Filipino phrases to wish people with, can you think of someone who has a big event coming up? If you want to get even more creative, FilipinoPod101 has much to inspire you with – come and check it out! Here’s just some of what we have on offer at FilipinoPod101:

  • Free Resources: Sharing is caring, and for this reason, we share many free resources with our students. For instance, start learning Filipino with our basic online course by creating a lifetime account – for free! Also get free daily and iTunes lessons, free eBooks, free mobile apps, and free access to our blog and online community. Or how about free Vocabulary Lists? The Filipino dictionary is for exclusive use by our students, also for free. There’s so much to love about FilipinoPod101…!
  • Innovative Learning Tools and Apps: We make it our priority to offer you the best learning tools! These include apps for iPhone, iPad, Android and Mac OSX; eBooks for Kindle, Nook, and iPad; audiobooks; Roku TV and so many more. This means that we took diverse lifestyles into account when we developed our courses, so you can learn anywhere, anytime on a device of your choice. How innovative!
  • Live Hosts and One-on-One Learning: Knowledgeable, energetic hosts present recorded video lessons, and are available for live teaching experiences if you upgrade. This means that in the videos, you get to watch them pronounce those tongue-twisters, as if you’re learning live! Add octane to your learning by upgrading to Premium Plus, and learn two times faster. You can have your very own Filipino teacher always with you, ensuring that you learn what you need, when you need to – what a wonderful opportunity to master a new language in record time!
  • Start Where You Are: You don’t know a single Filipino word? Not to worry, we’ve absolutely got this. Simply enroll in our Absolute Beginner Pathway and start speaking from Lesson 1! As your learning progresses, you can enroll in other pathways to match your Filipino level, at your own pace, in your own time, in your own place!

Learning a new language can only enrich your life, and could even open doors towards great opportunities! So don’t wonder if you’ll regret enrolling in FilipinoPod101. It’s the most fun, easy way to learn Filipino.

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Celebrating the Day of Valor in the Philippines

Celebrating the Day of Valor in the Philippines

The Day of Valor holiday in the Philippines, called Araw ng Kagitingan in Filipino, is a day of both celebration and mourning. On the one hand, it honors the courage of Filipino soldiers in World War 2, and on the other, it commemorates those who lost their lives in the Bataan Death March.

In this article, you’ll learn about the history behind the Day of Valor, look at how Pinoys mark this day, and gain some relevant Filipino vocabulary.

Let’s get started!

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1. What is Day of Valor in the Philippines?

In the Philippines, the Day of Valor is a public holiday for honoring the bravery, or katapangan, of Filipino and American soldiers during the Second World War. In particular, it commemorates one of the most horrendous things to happen in the Philippines in World War 2: The Bataan Death March.

What was the Bataan Death March?

A Bataan Death March Memorial

Leading up to the Bataan Death March, the Japanese had been able to occupy the Philippines. At the time, many of the Filipino and American soldiers were injured or ill, and so the American Major General Edward P. King decided to sumuko, or surrender, his forces. This took place on April 9, 1942.

Upon this surrender, the Japanese began marching King’s soldiers toward Camp O’Donnell, which was approximately ninety miles away in San Fernando. Many soldiers died during this march.

But all was not lost.

King’s surrender and the subsequent march acted as a diversion, allowing the Filipino and American soldiers’ allies more time to get ready for future battles. In the end, this allowed for major victories and turning points for the Filipinos and Americans, such as the Battle of Midway.

In 1945, the Bataan peninsula was once again liberated by the Filipino and American troops.

    → Check out our vocabulary list for another popular Filipino hero: Jose Rizal.

2. When is the Day of Valor Holiday?

One Soldier Rescuing Another

Each year, the Day of Valor is celebrated on April 9. However, if Easter happens to fall on the same date, they may celebrate on a nearby date instead.

3. Traditions and Celebrations for the Day of Valor

A Military Marching Together

The Day of Valor holiday revolves around honoring and celebrating the pagkabayani, or heroism, of the World War 2 soldiers, and mourns the loss of those who died.

On the Day of Valor, Philippines’ veterans from the Second World War parade through the streets of various cities, and the President gives a speech at the Mt. Samat Shrine. This shrine is located in the Bataan province in order to commemorate those who gave their all in digmaan, or war.

While most businesses are closed during the Day of Valor, you may find a few places still open. Because the Day of Valor is usually part of a long weekend, many Filipino families like to spend time together, usually out doing things.

4. Day of Valor Over the Years

Filipinos officially started celebrating the Day of Valor in 1961, but this holiday has had quite a few revisions since then. Perhaps most notably, its name has changed three times!

In 1961, this holiday was called Bataan Day. In 1987, this changed to Araw ng Kagitingan (Bataan and Corregidor Day). Finally, in 2010, it came to be called only Araw ng Kagitingan.

In the U.S. state of Illinois, there’s also a celebration for this holiday (called Bataan Day here). This is because some of the troops serving in the Bataan province were from the Illinois National Guard.

5. Essential Filipino Vocabulary for the Day of Valor

A Cat Standing in Front of a Lion Shadow

Ready to review some of the vocabulary words from this article? Here’s a list of the most important vocabulary for the Day of Valor in the Philippines!

  • Martsa ng Kamatayan — “Death march”
  • Katapangan — “Bravery”
  • Digmaan — “War”
  • Pagbagsak ng Bataan — “Fall of Bataan”
  • Ikalawang Digmaang Pandaigdig — “Second World War”
  • Sumuko — “Surrender”
  • Magiting — “Valiant”
  • Depensahan — “Defend”
  • Pagkabayani — “Heroism”
  • Ipaglaban ang — “Fight for”
  • Pagkubkob — “Siege”
  • Puwersang militar — “Military force”

To hear the pronunciation of each word, and to read them alongside relevant images, be sure to check out our Filipino Day of Valor vocabulary list!

Final Thoughts

We hope you enjoyed learning about the Day of Valor holiday with us, and that you took away some valuable cultural information.

Is there a holiday in your country to honor national heroes or the military? Let us know about it in the comments!

If you want to learn even more about Filipino culture, visit the following pages on FilipinoPod101.com:

Still want more? Create your free lifetime account today, and start learning with us. FilipinoPod101.com has tons of fun lessons for learners at every level, so there’s something for everyone.

We look forward to having you!

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How to Celebrate the Filipino-Chinese New Year

Considering the history between China and the Philippines, it should come as no surprise that the popular Chinese New Year holiday would find a place among the Filipinos. The Filipino Chinese New Year traditions reflect traditional Chinese culture with a modern Filipino flare.

In this article, you’ll learn all about the Philippines during Chinese New Year, the most popular Chinese New Year foods, and some of the history involved in the integration of this holiday into Filipino culture.

At FilipinoPod101.com, it’s our aim to make every aspect of your language-learning journey both fun and informative, starting with this article! Ready to delve into this fascinating holiday? Let’s get started.

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1. What is the Chinese New Year?

Because of the large number of Chinese people living in the country, the Chinese New Year was declared an official holiday in 2011. Looking back at history, the Filipinos had been trading with the Chinese even before the arrival of the Spanish.

The Spanish placed the Chinese in an area in Manila called Binondo. Commerce is very lively in Binondo, where Chinese and Chinese-Filipinos own a lot of businesses. It’s also the center of festivities during the Chinese New Year, and the oldest Chinatown in the world, established in 1594. Binondo means binondoc or binundok, translating to “mountainous” in English, referring to the hilly area of Binondo.

The Philippines’ Lunar New Year celebration is led by the Chinese and Filipino-Chinese living in the country. It’s celebrated because of the unique festivities, food, and beliefs that accompany this tradition. In the Filipino language, the Chinese New Year could be called a katangi-tanging selebrasyon, or “one-of-a-kind celebration!”

2. Chinese New Year Dates

Flowers and Red Packet for Chinese New Year

The Chinese New Year follows the lunar calendar, meaning that its date on the Gregorian calendar varies from year to year. For your convenience, here’s a list of this holiday’s date for the next ten years.

  • 2020: January 25
  • 2021: February 12
  • 2022: February 1
  • 2023: January 22
  • 2024: February 10
  • 2025: January 29
  • 2026: February 17
  • 2027: February 6
  • 2028: January 26
  • 2029: February 13

3. Lunar New Year Celebrations in the Philippines

Chinese New Year Dragon Dance

In the Philippines, Chinese New Year traditions always include lots of good food, and even people who don’t celebrate the holiday look forward to the dishes they can expect during the festivities. The most popular of these Filipino Chinese New Year foods is the “Chinese New Year’s cake,” made of glutinous rice, called the tikoy in Filipino. A variety of types and flavors that suit both Filipino and Chinese tastes have become popular, including pandan and ube (purple yam). The tikoy symbolizes how family members stay bonded together. Because the tikoy is sticky, it’s said that having this every Chinese New Year will make a family’s bonds “stickier.”

Red is considered the luckiest color, and a lot of people wear red on this day. Older people give money-filled “red envelopes,” called ang pao, to children.

Each year, the Chinese and Chinese-Filipinos take part in or watch the dragon dance, lion dance, and paputok, or “fireworks.” It’s said that the lion and dragon dances will bring good luck to one’s business or family. People also believe that a longer dragon will bring more good luck.

4. Common New Year Greetings

There are two main holiday greetings that Pinoys say to each other on the Chinese New Year. Do you know what they are?

The first and most common is the Cantonese greeting Kung Hei Fat Choi, meaning “Happy New Year.” The second is Kiong Hee Huat Tsai, which means “Congratulations” and “Be prosperous.”

5. Must-Know Vocabulary

Pancit, a Traditional Chinese Dish Adopted by Filipinos

Ready to review some of the vocabulary words we covered in this article? Here are the essential vocabulary words you should know for the Chinese New Year in the Philippines!

  • Hopia — “Bakpia
  • Siomai — “Shumai
  • Kung Hei Fat Choi — “Happy New Year”
  • Lumpia — “Lumpia”
  • Paputok — “Firework”
  • Dragon dance — “Dragon dance”
  • Ang pao — “Red envelope”
  • Pancit — “Pancit”
  • Tikoy — “Chinese New Year’s cake”
  • Lunar New Year — “Lunar New Year”

To hear each of these vocabulary words pronounced, and to read them alongside relevant images, be sure to check out our Filipino Lunar New Year vocabulary list!

Final Thoughts

We hope you enjoyed learning about the Filipino Lunar New Year with us! How do you celebrate the new year in your country? Let us know in the comments!

If you’re interested in learning even more about Filipino culture and the language, you may find the following pages useful:

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