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10 Reasons Filipinos and Latinos Are Primos

I can speak a bit of Filipino and just started studying Spanish on Duolingo a few months ago. I never realized how many Filipino words were derived from Spanish until I started studying it, so I started to put a list together whenever I saw a Spanish word that was also used in Filipino.

Then somebody posted this: http://www.remezcla.com/2014/latin/film-10-reasons-why-latinos-and-filipinos-are-primos/

The word list gives a small sample of words that still exist in the Filipino language.

I'm curious. Are there any fluent Filipino speakers currently studying Spanish or vice versa? I'm curious how much of a help it was for you to pick up the language. My Filipino is limited to that of a 3 or 4 year old, but it did help a lot to get started studying Spanish.

3 years ago

30 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/tomigaoka

My Dad is Filipino and I can speak a little bit. Its a very unique language in a sense that when my dad talks, its sounds like spanish with other asian languages mix on it. Very unique and flexible!

In my observation, though there are borrowed words, it will help u a lot most in pronunciation. But grammar wise is NO... its still 100% entirely different language.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/tmarvin
tmarvin
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Makes sense - many loan words come from Spanish, but the "core" of the language would have been set far before the Europeans arrived.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/meggycortes

Yes, almost 50% of the filipino language came from the spaniards. The rest are chinese, malay, and others all mixed together. My teacher once told us that our language is like a soup mixed in with different ingredients. Each ingredient adds a unique mix to the language :P

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/starspark_bianca

I'm a Filipino and YES, it is such a big help! I didn't realize just how many Spanish words I already knew until I started Duolingo.

And a big bonus is that I'm living in a city where our main dialect is Cebuano (not Filipino, which is the national language). Filipino has a plethora of Spanish words, yes, but it's also mixed with Malay and other Southeast Asian languages, and Filipino tribal dialects.

Cebuano, on the other hand, consists of mainly Spanish words (due to Cebu being the stronghold of the colonizers way back when they first landed, I guess, which made them speak Spanish longer than most of the country). We even count in Spanish! The accent, spelling and pronunciation are a bit different, but still recognizably the same word. For example, with animals, duck is pato, horse is cabayo. Our book is libro, kitchen is cucina, sugar is asucal/asucar, key is yabe, onion is seboyas, meat is carne... I could go on and on. (Addendum: I realize that most of those examples apply to FIlipino as well, except for key & onion.)

It's been particularly helpful whenever I'm taking the quizzes and forget what the correct Spanish term is. I just fall back on Cebuano and it somehow manages to be the correct answer! :)

Another Philippine dialect with a lot of Spanish words is Chavacano, but I don't speak it so I'm afraid I can't say much about it. I think, however, it's even more Spanish than Cebuano, especially with sentence construction. You can read examples of it here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chavacano_language

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AlejoPF
AlejoPF
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Chavacano is a Spanish-based Creole (actually, there're just two of these Creoles in the world. The other one is Palenquero, and it's spoken in Colombia, my country). Because of this, Chavacano is closer to Spanish than Cebuano and Filipino. Greetings! :)

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/meggycortes

Haha yeah that's why i always got perfect in the date and time level because it's all the same. Only difference is the spelling and our translation for sunday which is not "domingo"

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/starspark_bianca

Hahah, that's great! Actually, where I live, our Sunday is still Domingo. :D

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/andygravity

We have a Filipino food truck in my area that largely serves empanadas. I was interested to find out they are big in the Philippines as well.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/indigobloom

I've heard that Vietnamese is just like this with French! I wonder if there are any other Asian languages with a romance language mixed in out there...

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/OnesimusUnbound

Indonesia was once a Dutch colony. I wonder how prevalent dutch is in indonesia.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/meggycortes

Hola I'm filipino and i can say that studying spanish is easier for me :D The months, and the days of the week are the same. The only difference is the spelling. And we also use spanish numbers here as a way of counting money, that is why almost everyone here can count in spanish.

it is very interesting because all of the places and names here are also in spanish and when i used duolingo i can translate them. Like my friends surname is "of the world" and a city here means "the trees"

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/CattleRustler

It's not surprising since Magellan (A Spaniard) landed there in 1521. I know several Filipinos with spanish last names, one being "Bueno"

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Tomk123

Magellan was not Spanish but Portuguese. The Spanish came later and stayed there for several centuries.Tagalog is the main language in the Philippines. So it is not surprising that it contains many words derived fron Spanish.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/CattleRustler

He was Portuguese yes, but the expeditions belonged to the Spaniards, thus, introducing spoken spanish the Filipinos, is what I should have said.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/procrastinitis

Actually, it's because of how the Philippines used to be a Spanish colony, if I'm correct.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/procrastinitis

I'm Filipino by blood, but I can't speak fluent Tagalog (Filipino). I'm learning Spanish, though. Does that count? :P

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/meggycortes

It is easier tho, learning spanish if you are fluent in filipino :D

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Joseph1496
Joseph1496
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Mas madali kong maronong ka mag salita ng Filipino, Es muy facil, aprendiendo espaƱol si hablas Filipino con fluidez. It is easier tho, learning spanish if you are fluent in filipino. learning languages is fun if you understand them (;

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Joseph1496
Joseph1496
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mas* no muy

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/procrastinitis

Vice versa, possibly?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/georgeoftruth
georgeoftruth
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Yes!!! I'm a fluent Filipino speaker studying some Spanish. I've seen quite a few here in these forums. I have no formal training in the Spanish language before Duolingo but I knew that there are a lot of loan words, some that I use everyday. I can say that because of some similarity with the rules of French grammar and a lot of recognizable Filipino loan words, I'm having an easy and fun time doing Spanish on Duolingo.

The older generation in the Philippines actually spoke Spanish since it was a requirement in school. I think it was around 1987 when Spanish disappeared from the Filipino education curriculum. It's not uncommon to find some Filipino grandparents who spoke fluent Spanish.

I'm still waiting for the day when Filipino for English shows up in the incubator. I will try my darndest to be on that language team.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/sugoibeans

wow 401 day streak way to go!!! I wish I could do that but I'm still in college and quite busy hahahaha

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/joshmarcm

I am a pure filipino. I live in the Philippines and My native language is Filipino. I am studying spanish. Some words are similar, we borrowed words from spanish like noche buena, lugar, uno, dos ,tres, and so on. Most of our surnames are spanish. My surname is Mendoza. It's easy for me to study spanish because some words are the same as tagalog but only spelling is different. and the grammar is different from spanish. Our sentence order is V-S-O e.g. Kumain ako ng kanin (I eat rice).

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Joseph1496
Joseph1496
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pinoy rin ako tol, naka intindi ako ng Spanish, minsan pag hindi ko na intindihan tanongin ko na lang sila, tapos na intindihan ko na. Los accentos son facil para mi . Te gusta nuestro cultura de las filipinas? Que te parece?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/iamreggie
iamreggie
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oh, actually spaniards came to philippines. that's why filipino language is related to spanish like lunes, martes etc. and their traditions

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/OnesimusUnbound

Knowing any Filipino language helps me alot in learning Spanish, yet there are also words that causes confusion, so called false friends, which are specific to us link. For me, "siempre" and "casi" still confuse me from time to time.

Anyway, I study spanish partly to connect with other latin cultures, a culture which we filipino still has, despite of losing Spanish as the lingua franca here.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/gringaerin
gringaerin
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I heard my Filipino coworker talking on the phone in Tagalog and thought it was Spanish. I asked him if he could help me with Spanish and thought he was lying when he said no. I didn't realize he was Filipino until months later. I guess it didn't help that he had a little Argentinian trinket on his desk with his name on it that made me think he was from Argentina.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/aaron.f.54

I speak fluent Filipino (Tagalog) and trying to learn Spanish. Fluency in any of the Filipino languages (specially Chavacano) helps with vocabulary. Not so much with grammar. We use Spanish words in our everyday language including nouns, verbs, adverbs, adjectives, propositions, numbers etc. We just don't put the words together in proper Spanish sentences.

For instance in Tagalog (which is what people are usually referring to when they say FIlipino), we don't conjugate verbs. If we do, we conjugate it the way a local word would be conjugated. For example the word "trabajar". We only use it in its "trabajo" form and we only conjugate it to show the tense (past: nagtrabaho, present: nagtratrabaho, future: magtratrabaho imperative: magtrabaho). But we don'I conjugate it to match the subject noun/pronoun. Notice the spelling changed from "trabaJo" to "trabaHo". I think the spelling changes in Spanish words was an attempt by the government to make the words more distinctly Filipino. IMO they should have kept the Spanish spellings but I digress. This same thing is happening to English words nowadays.

It's similar to how English is to french. English uses a lot of words with French (and ultimately latin) origin. But the grammar/ sentence construction are different. Just like how English speakers use French words everyday but they will not understand French.

To answer the original question, yes it did help a lot. I didn't have to learn new words as much and I am able to focus more on the grammar and constructing sentences instead. Whereas if I had to learn Arabic, there would have to be a completely new set of words I will have to learn by rote.

What's also interesting is my Filipino background helped a lot in learning high school French despite not actually being able to speak Spanish. The words are similar enough that learning French for me is easier.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/sugoibeans

I'm a filipino!!! =)

I've only had the desire to learn other languages last november cause I figured it would really help me in the long run. In choosing which language to study, Spanish was actually at the top of my priority because I know that there are so many filipino loanwords from spanish. Yeah. It did. It really helped a lot.

I am now at the point where I can almost understand the spanish songs in my phone. And well I've also been able to memorize them. =)

3 years ago