Monday, September 14, 2009

Lesson 5 - Pronouns

Here are some pronouns with examples on how they are used in sentences.

I - Ako
You (singular)- Ikaw
You (plural) - Kamo
He/She - Siya
They - Sila

I am happy! - Malipayon ko! [The Visayan term for happy is lipay. The adjective is malipayon.]
You are beautiful. - Ikaw gwapa/ Ikaw matahom.
Gwapa is more commonly used for the word beautiful than matahom. Gwapa refers to a beautiful female while gwapo refers to a handsome male.
You are beautiful. - Gwapa ka. [This form is heard more often]
You are my friends. - Kamo akong mga higala/ Kamo akong mga amigo ug amiga.
You are my friends. - Mga higala ko kamo/ Mga amigo ko kamo.
The word friend can be translated to higala or amigo for males and amiga for females.

Give me. - Hatagi ako./ Hatagi 'ko.
Give him/her. - Hatagi siya.
Give them. - Hatagi sila.

Take care of me. - Atimana ako. Atimana 'ko.
Take care of him/her. - Atimana siya.
Take care of them. Atimana sila.

In Visayan, the word give is translated to hatag. The word care is translated to atiman or amping, among many other synonyms.

So, wishing someone to take care of himself/herself, you can hear people saying: Pag-amping! or Ayo-ayo! [Ayo-ayo is from the word maayo meaning good.]

Me - Kanako/Nako
You (Singular) - Kanimo
You (Plural) - Kaninyo
Her/Him - Kaniya
Them - Kanila

Give that to me. - Ihatag na nako.
I will give that to you. (Singular) - Ihatag na nako kanimo/ Ihatag na nako 'nimo.
I will give that to you. (Plural) - Ihatag na nako kaninyo/ Ihatag na nako 'ninyo.
I will give that to her/him. - Ihatag na nako kaniya/ Ihatag na nako 'niya.
I will give that to them. - Ihatag na nako kanila/ Ihatag na nako 'nila.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Lesson 4 - Parts of the Body

Below are some parts of the body that are often used in conversation.

Part of the body - Parte sa lawas

Head - Ulo
Hair - Buhok
Forehead - Agtang
Neck - Liog
Cheek - Aping

Eyes - Mata
Ears - Dunggan
Nose - Ilong
Mouth - Baba
Outer Lip - Ngabil
Inner Lip - Wait

Tongue - Dila
Tooth - Ngipon
Molars - Bag-ang
Cuspid - Tango
Gums - Lagos

Eyebrow - Kilay
Eyelash - Pilok
Iris - Kalimutaw
Face - Nawong
Beard - Bungot

Chin - Suwang
Jaw - Apapangig
Shoulder - Abaga
Armpit - Ilok
Hand - Kamot
Feet - Tiil

Elbow - Siko
Stomach - Tiyan
Navel - Pusod
Loin - Pus-on
Knee - Tuhod

Leg - Tiil
Calf of leg - Bagtak
Back of lower leg - Bitiis
Thigh - Paa
Heel - Tikod

Waist - Hawak
Upper hip - Bat-ang
Finger - Tudlo
Toes - Tudlo
Fingernail - Kuko

Nipple - Atngal
Mammary - Suso/ Tutoy
Breast - Dughan
Buttock - Sampot
Anus - Lubot

Little Finger - Kumingking
Thumb - Kumagko

Here are some helpful sentences that you might use when you visit the Visayan region of the Philippines.

Where is the pain? - Asa man ang sakit?
On my knees. - Sa akong tuhod.

My stomach is aching. - Sakit akong tiyan.
My hand is bleeding. - Nagdugo ang akong kamot.

What is the best part of your body? - Unsay pinakanindot nga parte sa imong lawas?
My eyes are the best part of my body. - Ang akong mga mata ang pinaknindot nga parte sa akong lawas.
My hair. - Ang akong buhok.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Lesson 3 - Days, Months and Numbers

The days of the week, months and numbers in Visayan are very similar to that of Spanish.

Monday - Lunes
Tuesday - Martes
Wednesday - Miyerkoles
Thursday - Huwebes
Friday - Biyernes
Saturday - Sabado
Sunday - Domingo
Week - Semana

When are we meeting up? - Kanus-a ta magkita?
On Monday. - Sa Lunes.
To see or to meet up is kita in Visayan.

When will I see you again? - Kanus-a na man sad ta magkita?
I will see you on Tuesday. - Magkita ta sa Martes.

January - Enero
February - Pebrero
March - Marso
April - Abril
May - Mayo
June - Hunyo
July - Hulyo
August - Agosto
September - Septiyembre
October - Oktubre
November - Nubiyembre
December - Disyembre
Month - Buwan

What month will she give birth? - Unsa nga buwan siya manganak? /Unsa'ng buwana siya manganak?
This September. - Karong Septiyembre.

One - Usa, uno
Two - Duha, dos
Three - Tulo, tres
Four - Upat, kuwatro
Five - Lima, singko
Six - Unom, sayis
Seven - Pito, siyete
Eight - Walo/Wa'w, Otso
Nine - Siyam, Nuybe
Ten - Napulo/Napu, Diyes

Eleven - Napulog-usa, onse
Twelve - Napulog-duha, dose
Thirteen - Napulog-tulo, trese
Fourteen - Napulog-upat, katorse
Fifteen - Napulog-lima, kinse
Sixteen - Napulog-unom, disesayis
Seventeen - Napulog-pito, disesiyete
Eighteen - Napulog-walo, disiotso
Nineteen - Napulog-nuybe, disinuybe
Twenty - Kawhaan, bayenti
Twenty-one - Kawhaan-og-usa, bayenti-uno
Thirty - Katloan, trayenta
Forty - Upat lapion ug napulo, kuwarenta
Fifty - Kali-an, Singkuwenta
Sixty - Sayisenta
Seventy - Kapitoan, Sietenta
Eighty - Kawaloan, Otsenta
Ninety - Kasiyaman, Nuybenta
One hundred - Usa ka gatos

How many are you buying? - Pila kabuok imong paliton?
I will buy eighty pieces. - Mopalit ko ug otsenta kabuok.
Eighty pieces. - Otsenta kabuok.

How much is this? - Pila ni?
That is one hundred pesos. - Usa ka gatos kana.

How much is that? - Pila na?
Fifty pesos only. - Singkwenta pesos ra.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Lesson 2 - Basic Introduction

Now that you have learned the basic greetings and expressions of common courtesy in Bisaya, Lesson 2 will be on basic introduction.

My name is Juan. - Ang akong pangalan/pang'an/'nga'n si Juan [Note the shortened version of the word "pangalan" for name.]
I am Juan. - Ako si Juan. (name)

And what about you? - Unya, ikaw?
What is your name? - Unsa ang imong pangalan/pang'an/'nga'n?/ Unsay imong 'nga'n?

Where do you live? - Asa ka nagpuyo/puyo?/ Asa di-ay ka puyo? ["di-ay" is a term that may denote "oh by the way"]
I live in Cebu City. - Nagpuyo ko sa Cebu City.

What is your telephone number? - Unsa ang imong numero sa telepono?
/ Unsay imong numero? [Visayans will also say, "unsay imong number?"]

It was nice meeting you! - Maayong pag ila-ila nimo. [The English expression is more often used]
Until we meet again. - Sa sunod na pud nga pagkakita-ay.
Until next - Sa sunod na pud.

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Saturday, August 22, 2009

Lesson 1 - Greetings and Frequently used Phrases in Cebu, the Visayas and Mindanao

When learning to speak a language, it is best to start with phrases used for greetings and common courtesy. Below are some of the must-learn expressions.

Note that because of the media, technology and Western influence, some expressions are spoken in English and do not have a Visayan equivalent or are directly derived from English and may be changed slightly.

Also, particularly for Cebuanos, we tend to cut short our sentences. I indicate the short versions for your easy learning. We also use a lot of colloquial expressions.

Hello/Hi - Hello/Hi
How are you? - Kumusta ka?/ Musta? (S)
I am fine, thank you. - Maayo man, salamat. ["man" is just an expression and does not independently mean anything]
Goodbye! - Babay!/Bye
See you soon/See you later - Magkita unya ta pohon/ Kita ta sa sunod/Kitakits (S)
Take care! - Pag amping!/ Ayo-ayo!

Thank you! - Salamat!
You are welcome! - Walay sapayan!/ Wa'y sapayan! (S) [The English version is more often used]
Excuse me - Excuse me/ Pasensya-i
I am sorry - Pasaylo-a ko. [The English version is more often used]

Good morning! - Maayong buntag!
Good afternoon! - Maayong hapon!
Good evening! - Maayong gabi-i!
Good morning to you all! - Maayong buntag kaninyo nga tanan!*
Good afternoon to you all! - Maayong hapon kaninyo nga tanan!*
Good evening to you all! - Maayong gabi-i kaninyo nga tanan!*
*May be cut short to: Maayong buntag/hapon/gabi-i ninyong tanan!

Do you understand English? - Kasabot ka ug iningles?
Do you know how to speak English - Kahibalo ka mo iningles?/Kahibaw ka mo iningles?
Do you understand Visayan? - Kahibalo ka mo binisaya?/Kahibaw ka mo binisaya?
I understand. - Kasabot ko.
I don't understand. - Wala ko kasabot./ Wa ko kasabot./ Ambot. ["Wala" is often shortened to "wa"]
I don't know. - Wala ko kahibaw./ Wa ko kahibaw./ Ambot.
Yes - Oo
No - Dili
Please repeat. - Balika palihug.

What do you want? - Unsa ang imong gusto?/ Unsay imong gusto?
I like that. - Ganahan ko ana.
I like you. - Ganahan ko nimo.

I love you. - Gihigugma ko ikaw/ Gihigugma tikaw. [The English equivalent is more often used]
I care for you. - Palangga ko ikaw/ Palangga tikaw. ["Palangga" is often shortened to "pangga" and further shortened to "ga."]*

*Some people are called "Langga" or "Ga" from the term "palangga" which is a term used to describe a person you care for.

Who? - Kinsa?
What? - Unsa?
When? - Kanus-a?
Where? - Asa?
How? - Giunsa?
Why? - Ngano?

Who is that? - Kinsa na?
What is she doing? - Unsay iyang gibuhat?
When are you coming? - Kanus-a ka moanhi?
Where are you going? - Asa ka moadto?
How did you do that? - Giunsa na nimo pagbuhat?
Why do you like him? - Nganong ganahan ka niya?


Throughout the course of history, the Cebuano language has been influenced by a number of other languages like Sanskrit, Javanese, Malay, Arabic, Spanish, English, Chinese, etc.*

Most of the people in the Visayas and Mindanao speak, read, write and understand not only Visayan or Bisaya but also Filipino/Tagalog and English since these subjects are taught in school. Moreover, Tagalog is the language used in mass media. English on the other hand is the medium of instruction and the language used in business, in the courts and other official fora.

It is common therefore to hear the Bisaya using different languages in one sentence. There are a number of people who also use a lot of slang and what is called gay language is becoming a fad in certain areas.

Mostly, the secret to understanding the gay language is simply to read the letters in reverse. Then you will get the regular Visayan word. For example, to describe smelling good in Cebuano, the word used is "humot." But in gay language, it will be "tomuh" or "tomu-h."

The learner has to take note also that most of us people living in Cebu are fond of cutting short our words and sentences.

This is a brief overview of Cebuano.

Do not worry about learning everything in one go. Learn the language slowly and comfortably. Hopefully, as we build upon the lessons, you will be more confident with your Cebuano/Visayan language skills.

Enjoy the journey!


*Information from English Visayan Cebuano Dictionary, Unang Edisyon 2009, SunStar Publications Network.

About this Site

This blog responds to the need of some English-speakers who are interested to learn the Visayan language.

Hopefully, this site will help propagate the love for the Visayan/Cebuano language and pave the way to better communication and understanding between peoples.

About This Blog

This blog responds to the need of some English-speakers who are interested to learn the Visayan language.

Hopefully, this site will help propagate the love for the Visayan/Cebuano language and pave the way to better communication and understanding between peoples.

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