Cebuano language
Overview
Cebuano, referred to by most of its speakers as Bisaya (or Visayan in English), is an Austronesian language spoken in the Philippines
Philippines
The Philippines , officially known as the Republic of the Philippines , is a country in Southeast Asia in the western Pacific Ocean. To its north across the Luzon Strait lies Taiwan. West across the South China Sea sits Vietnam...

 by about 20 million people mostly in the Central Visayas
Central Visayas
Central Visayas, designated as Region VII, is a region of the Philippines located in the central part of the Visayas island group. It consists of four provinces—Bohol, Cebu, Negros Oriental, and Siquijor— and the highly urbanized cities of Cebu City, Lapu-Lapu City, and Mandaue City....

. It is the most widely spoken of the languages within the so-named Bisayan subgroup and is closely related to other Filipino languages. It has the largest native language speaking population of the Philippines despite not being taught formally in schools and universities.
Encyclopedia
Cebuano, referred to by most of its speakers as Bisaya (or Visayan in English), is an Austronesian language spoken in the Philippines
Philippines
The Philippines , officially known as the Republic of the Philippines , is a country in Southeast Asia in the western Pacific Ocean. To its north across the Luzon Strait lies Taiwan. West across the South China Sea sits Vietnam...

 by about 20 million people mostly in the Central Visayas
Central Visayas
Central Visayas, designated as Region VII, is a region of the Philippines located in the central part of the Visayas island group. It consists of four provinces—Bohol, Cebu, Negros Oriental, and Siquijor— and the highly urbanized cities of Cebu City, Lapu-Lapu City, and Mandaue City....

. It is the most widely spoken of the languages within the so-named Bisayan subgroup and is closely related to other Filipino languages. It has the largest native language speaking population of the Philippines despite not being taught formally in schools and universities. It is the lingua franca
Lingua franca
A lingua franca is a language systematically used to make communication possible between people not sharing a mother tongue, in particular when it is a third language, distinct from both mother tongues.-Characteristics:"Lingua franca" is a functionally defined term, independent of the linguistic...

 of the Central Visayas and parts of Mindanao
Mindanao
Mindanao is the second largest and easternmost island in the Philippines. It is also the name of one of the three island groups in the country, which consists of the island of Mindanao and smaller surrounding islands. The other two are Luzon and the Visayas. The island of Mindanao is called The...

. The name Cebuano is derived from the island of Cebu
Cebu
Cebu is a province in the Philippines, consisting of Cebu Island and 167 surrounding islands. It is located to the east of Negros, to the west of Leyte and Bohol islands...

 where the prestige dialect is spoken.

Cebuano is given the ISO 639-2
ISO 639-2
ISO 639-2:1998, Codes for the representation of names of languages — Part 2: Alpha-3 code, is the second part of the ISO 639 standard, which lists codes for the representation of the names of languages. The three-letter codes given for each language in this part of the standard are referred to as...

 three letter code ceb, but has no ISO 639-1
ISO 639-1
ISO 639-1:2002, Codes for the representation of names of languages — Part 1: Alpha-2 code, is the first part of the ISO 639 series of international standards for language codes. Part 1 covers the registration of two-letter codes. There are 136 two-letter codes registered...

 two-letter code.

Distribution

Cebuano is spoken in Cebu
Cebu
Cebu is a province in the Philippines, consisting of Cebu Island and 167 surrounding islands. It is located to the east of Negros, to the west of Leyte and Bohol islands...

, Bohol
Bohol
Bohol is an island province of the Philippines located in the Central Visayas region, consisting of Bohol Island and 75 minor surrounding islands. Its capital is Tagbilaran City. With a land area of and a coastline long, Bohol is the tenth largest island of the Philippines...

, Negros Oriental
Negros Oriental
Negros Oriental is a province of the Philippines located in the Central Visayas region. It occupies the south-eastern half of the island of Negros, with Negros Occidental comprising the north-western half. It also includes Apo Island — a popular dive site for both local and foreign tourists...

, western parts of Leyte
Leyte
Leyte is a province of the Philippines located in the Eastern Visayas region. Its capital is Tacloban City and occupies the northern three-quarters of the Leyte Island. Leyte is located west of Samar Island, north of Southern Leyte and south of Biliran...

, some parts of Samar
Samar
Samar, formerly and also known as Western Samar, is a province in the Philippines located in the Eastern Visayas region. Its capital is Catbalogan City and covers the western portion of Samar as well as several islands in the Samar Sea located to the west of the mainland...

, Negros Occidental
Negros Occidental
Negros Occidental is a province of the Philippines located in the Western Visayas region. Its capital is Bacolod City and it occupies the northwestern half of Negros Island; Negros Oriental is at the southeastern half...

, Biliran
Biliran
In 1945 liberated by the Philippine Commonwealth forces of the 9th Infantry Division of the Philippine Commonwealth Army was landed in Biliran with the local guerrilla forces by the attack of the Japanese troops from the island during the Battle of Biliran during World War II.-Conversion:On April...

 islands, southern region of Masbate
Masbate
Masbate is an island province of the Philippines located in the Bicol Region. Its capital is Masbate City and consists of three major islands: Masbate, Ticao and Burias.-History:...

 island and Mindanao
Mindanao
Mindanao is the second largest and easternmost island in the Philippines. It is also the name of one of the three island groups in the country, which consists of the island of Mindanao and smaller surrounding islands. The other two are Luzon and the Visayas. The island of Mindanao is called The...

. Some dialects of Cebuano have different names for the language. Ethnic groups from Bohol may refer to Cebuano as Bol-anon
Boholano language
Boholano is a variant of Cebuano spoken in the province of Bohol in the Philippines and eastern parts of Southern Leyte...

while Cebuano speakers in Leyte identify their dialect as Kana. Speakers in Mindanao and Luzon
Luzon
Luzon is the largest island in the Philippines. It is located in the northernmost region of the archipelago, and is also the name for one of the three primary island groups in the country centered on the Island of Luzon...

 refer to the language simply as Bisaya.

Characteristics

Cebuano speakers can be easily distinguished from speakers of other Visayan languages
Visayan languages
The Visayan languages of the Philippines, along with Tagalog and Bikol, are part of the Central Philippine languages...

 by the use of the word "sa" instead of "sang" (in Hiligaynon
Hiligaynon language
Hiligaynon, often referred to as Ilonggo, is an Austronesian language spoken in the Western Visayas region of the Philippines.Hiligaynon is concentrated in the provinces of Iloilo, Negros Occidental and Capiz but is also spoken in the other provinces of the Panay Island group, including Antique,...

) or "han" (in Waray).

Cebuano can vary significantly depending on where it is spoken, particularly on the preference for vowel allophones or consonants. Words like "kalayo" (fire) can become "kalajo" or "kayo" in some regions. "Gahì" (hard) forms of vowels are also preferred in some areas. For example, instead of the "o" or "e" sounds in Cebu
Cebu
Cebu is a province in the Philippines, consisting of Cebu Island and 167 surrounding islands. It is located to the east of Negros, to the west of Leyte and Bohol islands...

, you'll be more likely to hear "u" or "i" sounds in central Mindanao
Mindanao
Mindanao is the second largest and easternmost island in the Philippines. It is also the name of one of the three island groups in the country, which consists of the island of Mindanao and smaller surrounding islands. The other two are Luzon and the Visayas. The island of Mindanao is called The...

 – "pangadye" (prayer) becomes "pangadyi", and "babaye" (woman) becomes "babayi" or "baba-i" ("babaji" in slang, particularly in swardspeak
Swardspeak
Swardspeak is an argot or cant slang derived from Englog and used by a number of homosexuals in the Philippines.-Description:...

).

Sentence length especially in colonized regions like eastern and central Mindanao where colonists usually come from several different Visayan regions. Sentence structure in these regions are usually shorter and terser than the Cebuano spoken in Cebu itself, utilizing numerous shortcuts and more Spanish
Spanish language
Spanish , also known as Castilian , is a Romance language in the Ibero-Romance group that evolved from several languages and dialects in central-northern Iberia around the 9th century and gradually spread with the expansion of the Kingdom of Castile into central and southern Iberia during the...

/English
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...

 derived vocabulary rather than "lalum nga bisaya" (literally "deep Visayan", referring to less frequently used words that have since been replaced by English or Spanish in other regions).

Colloquialisms are also considered a very good way of determining regional origin. Cebuano-speaking people from Cagayan de Oro, for example, say "chada" (alternative spelling "tsada"; roughly translated to the English colloquialism "awesome"), while Cebuanos from Cebu say "nindut"/"anindut".

Two standards of spelling are used. The traditional form, called the "Bisaya Standard", is widely disseminated by Bisaya Magasin
Bisaya Magasin
Bisaya Magasin is a weekly Cebuano magazine now published by the Manila Bulletin Publishing Corporation, Philippines. It has the record of being the oldest magazine in Cebuano which is still published now, and "the most successful periodical in Cebuano" Bisaya Magasin is a weekly Cebuano magazine...

, the oldest surviving publication published in Cebuano. The more modern form called the "Tamdanan Standard" is widely used by the Superbalita
Sun.Star Superbalita Davao
Sun.Star Superbalita Davao is a Visayan tabloid published daily by Sun.Star Davao Publishing, Inc. with editorial & business office at Granland Business and Warehouse Center, R. Castillo St., Agdao, Davao City. The main product of Sun.Star Davao Publishing Inc. is the Sun.Star Davao, an English...

magazine published by Sun.Star
Sun.Star
Sun.Star is a major English-language newspaper in the Philippines. The newspaper is based in Cebu City and is the only major national Philippine newspaper outside Metro Manila....

 Publications. Increasing usage of spoken English (being the primary language of commerce and education in the Philippines) has led to the introduction of new pronunciations and spellings of old Cebuano words. "J" now routinely replace "dy" sounds, "ch" for "ts", etc. Code-switching
Code-switching
In linguistics, code-switching is the concurrent use of more than one language, or language variety, in conversation. Multilinguals—people who speak more than one language—sometimes use elements of multiple languages in conversing with each other...

 forms of English and Bisaya (Bislish
Bislish
Bislish is a portmanteau of the words 'Bisaya' and 'English' which refers to the any of the Visayan languages of the Philippines infused with English terms. It is an example of code mixing. An example of Bislish as spoken in Cebuano-language areas would be, "Tired na jud ko, girl, how far pa house...

) is also common among the educated younger generations.

Being unable to pronounce or speak English correctly (the worst forms of which is referred to as "Carabao
Carabao
The carabao or Bubalus bubalis carabanesis is a subspecies of the domesticated water buffalo found in the Philippines, Guam, Indonesia, Malaysia, and various parts of Southeast Asia...

 English") is often viewed as a mark of low social status and subject to ridicule. As such it is actively avoided except for comic relief. Conversely, affected American 'accents' when speaking Cebuano or its pidgin forms is also ridiculed as being too pretentious. The same thing happened during the Spanish period when "h" sounds were often spelled with "j", and "k" with "c" (retained particularly in place names like Cagayan de Oro or Cebu - originally Kagay-an and Sugbu).

Phonology

Cebuano has 21 phonemes. There are sixteen consonants: p, t, k, ʔ (the glottal stop
Glottal stop
The glottal stop, or more fully, the voiceless glottal plosive, is a type of consonantal sound used in many spoken languages. In English, the feature is represented, for example, by the hyphen in uh-oh! and by the apostrophe or [[ʻokina]] in Hawaii among those using a preservative pronunciation of...

), b, d, g, m, n, ng, s, h, w, l, r and y. There are five vowels: i, e, a, o and u.

Vowels

During the pre-colonial and Spanish
Spain
Spain , officially the Kingdom of Spain languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Spain's official name is as follows:;;;;;;), is a country and member state of the European Union located in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula...

 period, Cebuano had three vowel phonemes: /a/, /i/ and /u/. This was later expanded to five vowels with the introduction of Spanish words. The vowels o and u are still mostly allophone
Allophone
In phonology, an allophone is one of a set of multiple possible spoken sounds used to pronounce a single phoneme. For example, and are allophones for the phoneme in the English language...

s, however, with u always being used when it is the beginning of a syllable and o always used when it ends a syllable. But there are some exceptions, like kamatuoran (truth) and hangtúd (until). "E" originally appeared only in a few words such as "babaye" (girl/woman), "dayeg" (praise, compliment), "parayeg" (loving), and "pangadye" (prayer) and only in last syllables as "E" was mostly an allophone of "I" in final syllables. Under the influence of Spanish, more words with e have been added with the introduction of loanwords.

The vowels are: an open front unrounded vowel similar to English "father". an open-mid front unrounded vowel similar to English "bed". a close front unrounded vowel
Close front unrounded vowel
The close front unrounded vowel, or high front unrounded vowel, is a type of vowel sound, used in many spoken languages. The symbol in the International Phonetic Alphabet that represents this sound is ....

 similar to English "machine". a close-mid back rounded vowel similar to English "forty". a close back unrounded vowel
Close back rounded vowel
The close back rounded vowel, or high back rounded vowel, is a type of vowel sound, used in many spoken languages. The symbol in the International Phonetic Alphabet that represents this sound is , and the equivalent X-SAMPA symbol is u....

 similar to English "flute".

Consonants

Below is a chart of Cebuano consonants. All the stops are unaspirated. The velar nasal
Velar nasal
The velar nasal is the sound of ng in English sing. It is a type of consonantal sound, used in some spoken languages. The symbol in the International Phonetic Alphabet that represents this sound is , and the equivalent X-SAMPA symbol is N....

 occurs in all positions including at the beginning of a word.
Bilabial
Bilabial consonant
In phonetics, a bilabial consonant is a consonant articulated with both lips. The bilabial consonants identified by the International Phonetic Alphabet are:...

Dental Palatal
Palatal consonant
Palatal consonants are consonants articulated with the body of the tongue raised against the hard palate...

Velar
Velar consonant
Velars are consonants articulated with the back part of the tongue against the soft palate, the back part of the roof of the mouth, known also as the velum)....

Glottal
Glottal consonant
Glottal consonants, also called laryngeal consonants, are consonants articulated with the glottis. Many phoneticians consider them, or at least the so-called fricative, to be transitional states of the glottis without a point of articulation as other consonants have; in fact, some do not consider...

Nasal
Nasal consonant
A nasal consonant is a type of consonant produced with a lowered velum in the mouth, allowing air to escape freely through the nose. Examples of nasal consonants in English are and , in words such as nose and mouth.- Definition :...

m n ŋ
Plosive Voiceless p t k ʔ
Voiced b d ɡ
Fricative
Fricative consonant
Fricatives are consonants produced by forcing air through a narrow channel made by placing two articulators close together. These may be the lower lip against the upper teeth, in the case of ; the back of the tongue against the soft palate, in the case of German , the final consonant of Bach; or...

s h
Flap
Flap consonant
In phonetics, a flap or tap is a type of consonantal sound, which is produced with a single contraction of the muscles so that one articulator is thrown against another.-Contrast with stops and trills:...

ɾ
Lateral
Lateral consonant
A lateral is an el-like consonant, in which airstream proceeds along the sides of the tongue, but is blocked by the tongue from going through the middle of the mouth....

l
Approximant
Approximant consonant
Approximants are speech sounds that involve the articulators approaching each other but not narrowly enough or with enough articulatory precision to create turbulent airflow. Therefore, approximants fall between fricatives, which do produce a turbulent airstream, and vowels, which produce no...

w j

Stress

Stress accent is phonemic, so that dápit means "act of inviting", while dapít means "near" or "nearby place". Consonants [d] and [ɾ] were once allophones, but cannot interchange, like kabungturan (uplands) [from bungtód, mountain] is correct but not *kabungtudan and tagadihá (from there) [from dihá, there] is correct but not *tagarihá.

Grammar

Cebuano is a language with the verb–subject–object sentence order. Nouns and adjectives are joined by the nga connector with their order arbitrary as long as the nga connector is in between them.

Nouns

While Cebuano nouns are not inflected
Inflection
In grammar, inflection or inflexion is the modification of a word to express different grammatical categories such as tense, grammatical mood, grammatical voice, aspect, person, number, gender and case...

, they are usually preceded by case markers. There are three types of case markers: kinsa
Absolutive case
The absolutive case is the unmarked grammatical case of a core argument of a verb which is used as the citation form of a noun.-In ergative languages:...

 (nominative), tag-iya
Ergative case
The ergative case is the grammatical case that identifies the subject of a transitive verb in ergative-absolutive languages.-Characteristics:...

 (genitive) and gitagan'an
Oblique case
An oblique case in linguistics is a noun case of synthetic languages that is used generally when a noun is the object of a verb or a preposition...

 (oblique).

Unlike English
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...

 or Spanish
Spanish language
Spanish , also known as Castilian , is a Romance language in the Ibero-Romance group that evolved from several languages and dialects in central-northern Iberia around the 9th century and gradually spread with the expansion of the Kingdom of Castile into central and southern Iberia during the...

 which are nominative–accusative languages, Cebuano is an ergative–absolutive language. This may have led to a misconception about Cebuano as being often spoken in a passive voice.

Kinsa or nominative markers mark the topic of most sentences and both the topic and complementary predicate of an equational sentence. Tag-iya or genitive markers mark the owner of the thing or the doer of an action. Gitagan'an markers are similar to prepositions in English. They mark things such as location and direction. Furthermore, noun markers are divided into two classes: one for names of people (personal) and the second for everything else (general).

Below is a chart of case markers. Mga marks the plural.
  Kinsa Tag-iya Gitagan-an
general singular ang sa sa
general plural ang mga sa mga sa mga
personal singular si ni* kang
Personal plural sila si/ silang nila ni/ nilang* kanila ni/ kanilang


*Tag-iya case functions like an adjective. Sometimes an adjective acts as a complementary predicate. When a tag'iya case noun is a complementary predicate it uses kang in singular and ila ni/ilang in plural.

Examples:

Cebuano: Mga gobernador sa Pilipinas.

The governors of the Philippines

"The governors of the Philippines."

Cebuano: Init ka'ayo ang adlaw karon.

Hot very the weather today.

"The weather is very hot today."

Cebuano: Hain/Asa ang mga libro?

At-where the those book?

"Where are the books?"

Cebuano: To'a kang Presidente ang yawe/lyabe.

with the President the keys.

"The keys are with the President.

Pronouns

Like nouns, personal pronouns are categorized by case.
  Kinsa Tag-iya (primary) Tag-iya (modifier) Oblique
1st person singular ako akoa nako kanako
2nd person singular ikaw imoha nimo kanimo
3rd person singular siya / sya iyaha /iya niya kaniya
1st person plural inclusive kita atoa / ato nato kanato
1st person plural exclusive kami amoa / amo namo kanamo
2nd person plural kamo inyoha ninyo kaninyo
3rd person plural sila ilaha nila kanila

*The two sets of tag-iya case function similarly except that the primary tag-iya would need the unifying linker nga and the modifier tag-iya cannot be used as complementary adjective.

**The final syllable of a primary tag-iya pronoun is mostly dropped.

When the pronoun is not the first word of the sentence, the short form is more commonly used than the full form.
  Kinsa Tag-iya (primary) Tag-iya (modifier) Oblique
1st person singular ko ako ko nako
2nd person singular ka imo mo nimo
3rd person singular siya iya niya niya
1st person plural inclusive ta ato nato nato
1st person plural exclusive mi amo namo namo
2nd person plural kamo inyo ninyo ninyo
3rd person plural sila ila nila nila

*When the object is a second person pronoun, use ta instead of ko.

Examples:

Misulat ko.

"I wrote."

Nagbasa ko.

"I'm reading."

Nagtrabaho ko

"I'm working."

Modifier tag-iya pronouns follow the word they modify. Primary tag-iya pronouns can take the place of the modifier tag-iya pronoun but they precede the word they modify.

Ang akong sakyanan.

Ang akong sakyanan.

"My vehicle."

Special attention should be given to the short form ta. When the subject is second person it means first person singular.

Taga'an ta ka.

"I will give you"

Nakit'an ti ka kagahapon sa dagat.

"I saw you at the beach yesterday."

Amigo ta ka.

"You are my friend."

The inclusive pronoun kita refers to the first and second persons. It may also refer to a number of persons.

The exclusive pronoun kamí refers to the first and a number of persons in a group.

wa ta'y klase karon

"We don't have school today."

wa 'mi'y libro para basahonon karon
"We don't have a book to read today."

The short form is often used when the pronoun is not the first word in the sentence.

The pronouns are gender neutral, hence siyá means either he or she.

Demonstrative pronouns

Cebuano demonstrative pronouns are as follows.
  Kinsa Tag-iya Gitagan-an
  Full* Short* Full* Short* 'NG-'** 'D-'**
Nearest to speaker (this, here) kiri
kari
ri niiri
niari
iri
ari

ri
ngari diri
Near speaker and addressee (this, here) kini
kani
ni niini
niani
ini
ani

ni
nganhi dinhi
Nearest addressee (that, there)† kana na niana ana nganha diha
dinha
Remote (yon, yonder) kadto to niadto adto ngadto didto


* When the demonstrative is used as a predicate, the full form must be used.

** Both forms, those beginning with 'ng-' and those with 'd-', are interchangeable.

Although not represented in the orthography, forms in this row end in a glottal stop:
kana /kanaˀ/, na /naˀ/, niana /niˀanaˀ/, nganha /ŋanhaˀ/, diha /dihaˀ/, dinha /dinhaˀ/.

Examples:

Unsa ni?

What is this?.

"What's this?."

Kinsa na?.

Who's that?.

"Who is that?."

Gikan ni sa Presidente sa Filipinas, ning sulata.

From (ni=adjective) President this letter.

"This letter is from the President of the Philippines"

Mangaon sila didto.

We will eat they there.

"They will eat there."

Ni kaon na ang mga ta'o ug mga bata didto sa fiesta.

The people and children have already eaten in the festival.

"The people and children have already ate some of that in the festival."

Verbs

Cebuano verbs are morphologically complex (agglutinative) and take on a variety of affixes reflecting focus, aspect, mode and others. This is the functional view. There is disagreement over the issue. A number of linguists do not believe there is a verb at all. Cebuano controls arguments (subject–object) from an inflectional affix.

Aspect

From a functionalist school point of view, Cebuano verbs conjugate for aspect rather than for tense. Cebuano verbs indicate whether you are still going to start the act or not going to start it anymore. There are three types of aspect: imperative, incepted and incepting.
  1. imperative aspect - for giving commands.
  2. incepted aspect - past actions and present actions that are not habitual. While habitual may have been started somewhere in the past or the present, the fact that you are still have to start it again in the future make it in the incepting aspect.
  3. incepting aspect - future actions and habitual actions.

Examples on INCEPTED ASPECT:

Past actions

We butchered carabao.

The act had been started in the past therefore the Cebuano translation is:

Nag-ihaw mi og kabaw.

Present actions

We feast on delicious food and drink on beer.

The act has been started before the statement is spoken therefore the Cebuano translation is:

Nagsalo mi sa mga lamian nga pagkaon ug nanginom og beer.

Examples of Incepting Aspect

Future actions

My friend and I are going to Europe.

The act has not happened yet; therefore it has not yet started:

Mangadto mi sa akong amigo sa Europa.

Habitual actions

I always go to the festival in San Fernando.

Although the act had already happened she will still have to start the same act again and again (every morning) so the act itself is still to be started or pagasugdan pa and therefore:

Moadto ko kada fiesta sa San Fernando.

Forms

An interesting feature of the functional categorization of verbs in Cebuano and in other Philippine languages is its orientation (forms) system. This means that the role or relationship of the topic (marked by the absolutive marker) is reflected in the verb.

There are nine common orientation types: um verbs, pag verbs, pang verbs, ka verbs, magka verbs, on verbs, an verbs, i verbs and reciprocative.
um verbs
  • Form
    imperative incepted incepting wala base
    -(um)- mi- mo- mo-
  • Function - this form is used for either of the following conditions.
  1. one is emphasising that the action happen in an instance.
  2. one is emphasising that the doer willed the act.
    • Type of topic - the doer is the topic.

pag verbs
  • Forms
    imperative incepted incepting wala base
    pag- nag- mag- mag-
  • Functions - expresses actions that either.
  1. happen for a duration of time.
  2. do not imply doer intention.
    • Type of topic - talks about the doer.

pang verbs
  • Forms
    imperative incepted incepting wala base
    pang- nang- mang- mang-
  • Function - pluritive form of um verbs.
  • Type of topic - talks about the doer.

ka verbs
  • Forms
    imperative incepted incepting wala base
    ka- na- ma- ma-
  • Function - talks about changes.
  • Type of topic - the topic is the one who undergoes the change.

magka verbs
  • Forms
    imperative incepted incepting wala base
    none nagka- magka- magka-
  • Function - talks about a slow but steady change.
  • Type of topic - the topic is the one who undergoes the change.

reciprocating verbs
  • Forms
    imperative incepted incepting wala base
    pag-in-ay nag-in-ay mag-in-ay mag-in-ay
  • Function - reciprocating actions.
  • Type of topic - at least two persons/things doing reciprocating actions to each other.

on verbs
  • Forms
    imperative incepted incepting wala base
    -a gi- -on -a
  • Function - the direct object is often the topic, mostly misunderstood as similar to English passive voice.

an verbs
  • Forms
    imperative incepted incepting wala base
    -i gi-an -an -i
  • Function - the indirect object is often the topic, mostly misunderstood as similar to English passive voice.

i verbs
  • Forms
    imperative incepted incepting wala base
    i- gi- i- i-
  • Function - the instrument used is often the topic, mostly misunderstood as similar to English passive voice.

Mood

There are several grammatical moods in Cebuano: intuitive, non-intuitive and aptative.
  1. intuitive - the intuitive subject is the normal word of the verb, the one whose form you have just learned.
  2. non-intuitive - the non-intuitive aspect is used to express unexpected or unintended actions. It has no imperative aspect.
    NON_INTUITIVE incepted aspect incepting aspect wala form
    um verbs nahi- mahi- mahi-
    pag verbs nahi- mahi- mahi-
    pang verbs nahipang- mahipang- mahipang-
    ka verbs naha- maha- maha-
    magka verbs none none none
    reciprocating verbs nagka-in-ay magka-in-ay magka-in-ay
    on verbs na- ma- ma-
    an verbs hing-an mahi-an hing-i
    i verbs nai- mai- mai-
  3. aptative - the aptative aspect expresses the possibility of an action. Like the non-intuitive aspect, it has no imperative aspect. In the incepted aspect it implies the English perfect tenses or the have form. In the incepting aspect it implies the English can/could form.

APTATIVE incepted aspect incepting aspect wala form
um verbs naka- maka- maka-
pag verbs naka- maka- maka-
pang verbs nakapang- makapang- makapang-
ka verbs none none none
magka verbs none none none
reciprocating verbs none none none
on verbs na- ma- ma-
an verbs na-an ma-an ma-i
i verbs gika- ika- ikaw

Modifier

Cebuano adjectives (and also nouns) are linked to the word they modify by the unifying linker nga. However if nga follows a word ending in a vowel or glottal stop or the letter N, then it becomes suffixed to that word as -ng. The adjective often come before the word it modifies but it can also come after it.

Ex:

maayong buntag = a good morning

daghang tawo = a large crowd

kusoga sa Uwan = The rain is raining very hard.

A noun however always comes after the word it modifies.

Ex:

balay nga nipa = straw/bamboo house

hangin nga habagat = southeast monsoon

Superlative are expressed by adding the affix kina—an or the particle labing.
Ex:

kina'maayohan = best

kinadak'an = largest

labing'guapa = the most pretty

Comparative are express by adding the particle mas or labawng.

Enclitic particles

Cebuano has enclitic particles that have important information conveying difference nuances in meaning.

Below is a list of some enclitic particles.
  1. na and pa
    • na - now, already, yet
    • pa - still, else, in addition, yet
  2. man - particle used for disregarding reasons or results; even, even if, although
  3. pud, sad - too, also
  4. lamang (lang) - limiting particle; only or just
  5. daw, kuno - a reporting particle that expresses that the information in the sentence is second-hand; they say, he said, reportedly, supposedly, etc.
  6. gyud - politeness particle
  7. ba - used in yes-and-no questions and optionally in other types of questions.
  8. sa - for now, for a minute and yet (in negative sentences).
  9. kaha - expresses wonder; I wonder; perhaps (we should do something) (also optionally used in yes-and-no questions and other forms of questions).
  10. kay - expresses cause; because
  11. diay - expresses that the speaker has realized or suddenly remembered something; realization particle.
  12. tingali - expresses uncertainty; probably, perhaps, seems
  13. unta - expresses hope, unrealized condition (with verb in incepting aspect), used in conditional sentences.

Sentences

1) equational ( topic = predicate )
~ in this sentence type you can interchange the topic and the predicate without changing the thought of the sentence.
a) "Ma'o kini ang Kabisay'an". = This is the Visayas.
b) "Ma'o ’na ang amo'ang balay" = That is our house.


2) non-equational ( topic < predicate )
~ in this sentence type the topic and the predicate are not interchangeable.
a) "Taga-Asia ang mga Bisaya." = Visayans are Asians.
b) "Mo simba mi karon." = We are going to church now.


3) existential sentence of presence
~ sentences of this type tells the existence of a thing or idea.
a) "Adunay Diyos sa langit." = There is God in heaven.
b) "Didtoy halas sa kahoy." = There was a snake in the tree.


4) existential sentence of possession.
~ sentences of this type tell about someone or something possessing something.
a) "Ang mga anghel sa langit adunay Diyos." = The angels in heaven have a God.
b) "Naa koy ilimnon sa balay." = I had a drink at home.


5) locative sentence
~ this type of sentence tells the location of a thing.
a) "Ani'a/Na'ara ang kwarta." = Here is the money.
b) "’To'a siya sa bukid." = He/She is in the mountain.


6) meteorologic sentence
~ this type of sentence tells about weather condition, noise level, etc., of a place.
a) "Tugnaw dinhi sa Bukidnon." = It is cold here in Bukidnon.
b) "Hilom kaganiha sa plaza/Mingao ka'ayo didto sa plaza." = It was calm in the square.


7) exclamatory remark
~ praises and unexpected discoveries belong here.
a) "Kadaghan man nimo og sakyanan!" = You have a lot of cars.
b) "Guapa'ha nimo." = You are pretty.
c) "Kasaba ba ninyo." = You are so noisy.


8) imperatives
~ commands and requests.
a) "Isugba kanang isda." = Grill that fish.
b) "Ako nang gi sugba." = I already grilled it.


9) interrogatives
~ questions that are not answerable by yes or no.
a) "Kinsa ka?." = Who are you?.
b) "Unsay imong ngalan?" = What is your name?.


10) confirmation
~ questions that are basically answered by yes or no. Constructed sentence like the first 6 sentence type with the insertion of the particle "ba" as a second term.
a) "Kini ba ang Kabisay'an?." = Is this the Visayas?.
b) "Unsa ba ang imohang kinahanglan?." = What do you want?.
c) "Na unsa ba ang Politica?." = What is wrong with politics?.
d) "Isugba ba kining isda?." = Shall this fish be grilled?.

Negation

There are three negation words: dili, wala and ayaw.

Dili negates adjectives, nouns and incepting verbs.

Dili ko mo trabaho ugma.

"I will not work tomorrow."

Wala negates existentials and incepted verbs.

Wala ko mo trabaho tibuok adlaw.

"I did not work the whole day."

Ayaw is used in expressing negative commands.

Ayaw og hilak.

"Don't cry."

Ayaw mo pagdagan'dagan dinhi.

"Don't run here."

In response to interrogatives, Dili is used to reply negatively to future actions, while Wala is used to reply negatively to past and progressive actions. Ayaw is used when the intended response is the imperative "Don't" (Dili can also be used).

Mukaon ka?

Are you going to eat?

Dili.

No.

Nikaon ka?

Did you eat?

Wala.

No.

Gakaon ka?

Are you eating?

Wala.

No.

Kaonon nako ni?

Should I eat this?

Ayaw. or Dili.

Don't. (No.)

Words

  • Unsa? What?
  • Asa? Where? (for a place or person - present, future)
  • Diin?, Dis'a? Where? (past)
  • Hain?, Saa? Where? (for an object- present)
  • Kinsa? Who?
  • Ngano? Why?
  • Kangkinsa? To whom?
  • Giunsa? How?
  • Kanus'a? When? (past)
  • Anus'a? When? (future)
  • Pila ka buok?, Pila? How many?
  • Tagpila? How much?
  • Diay ba? Really?

The use of asa and hain

Asa and hain—both mean where—have distinct uses in formal Cebuano usage.

Asa - is used when asking about a place.
    • Asa ka padulong? - Where are you going?
    • Asa ta molarga? - Where are we traveling to?


Hain is used when asking about a person or thing.
    • Hain na ang gunting? - Where is the pair of scissor?
    • Hain na ang papel? - Where is the paper?


In spoken Cebuano in Metro Cebu, however, asa is commonly used to replace hain. Some use hain, especially by Southern Cebu, Negros, and Mindanao Cebuano speakers.

Vocabulary

Cebuano is a Filipino language closely related to the languages of Malaysia, Indonesia with some Latin influences. It is also a member of the Borneo–Philippine languages. It has also been influenced by thousands of words from Spanish, such as krus [cruz] (cross), swerte [suerte] ("luck"), gwapa [guapa], ("beautiful"), merkado [mercado] ("market") and brilyante [brillante] ("brilliant"). It has several hundred loan words from English as well by Cebuanos who were not given an opportunity to go to school, which are altered to conform to the limited phonemic inventory of Cebuano: brislit (bracelet), hayskul (high school), syápin (shopping) and dráyber (driver), nonetheless, Cebuanos are good English speakers. There are also words from other languages like Arabic
Arabic language
Arabic is a name applied to the descendants of the Classical Arabic language of the 6th century AD, used most prominently in the Quran, the Islamic Holy Book...

 like Salámat ("thanks"), [Hukom or Hukm] ("judge") and Islam
Islam
Islam . The most common are and .   : Arabic pronunciation varies regionally. The first vowel ranges from ~~. The second vowel ranges from ~~~...

ic words used in Mindanao like Imam
Imam
An imam is an Islamic leadership position, often the worship leader of a mosque and the Muslim community. Similar to spiritual leaders, the imam is the one who leads Islamic worship services. More often, the community turns to the mosque imam if they have a religious question...

, Syarip
Sharif
Sharīf or Chérif is a traditional Arab tribal title given to those who serve as the protector of the tribe and all tribal assets, such as property, wells, and land. In origin, the word is an adjective meaning "noble", "highborn". The feminine singular is sharifa...

, dyihad
Jihad
Jihad , an Islamic term, is a religious duty of Muslims. In Arabic, the word jihād translates as a noun meaning "struggle". Jihad appears 41 times in the Quran and frequently in the idiomatic expression "striving in the way of God ". A person engaged in jihad is called a mujahid; the plural is...

and Islam and Sanskrit Mahárlika ("nobility") and Karma
Karma
Karma in Indian religions is the concept of "action" or "deed", understood as that which causes the entire cycle of cause and effect originating in ancient India and treated in Hindu, Jain, Buddhist and Sikh philosophies....

.

Numbers

Cardinal Ordinal
1 usà / uno úna
2 duhà / dos ika-duhà
3 tulò / tres ika-tulò
4 upàt / quatro ika-upàt
5 limà / cinco ika-limà
6 unòm / seis ika-unòm
7 pitò / siete ika-pitò
8 walò / ocho ika-walò
9 siyàm / nueve ika-siyàm
10 napú'ô / napulo / diez ika-napú'ô / ika-napulo
11 napú'ô'g usá / napulo'g / napulo ug usá /once ika-napú'ô'g usá / ika-napulo'g usá / ika-napulo ug usá / ika-once
20 kawhaan / veinte
30 katlo-an / treinta
40 kap-atan / quarienta
100 usa ka gatos / ciento
1000 usa ka libo / mil
100,000 usa ka gatos ka libo / ciento mil
500,000 lima ka gatos ka libo / tunga sa milyon / cinco ciento mil
1000000 usa ka milyon / milliones

Note: Shorter terms are the one mostly used.

Phrases

  • How are you? - Kumusta ka?
  • Good morning - Ma'ayong buntag
  • Good afternoon - Ma'ayong hapon
  • Good evening - Ma'ayong gabi'i
  • Good bye - Adios (rare), Babay (informal, corruption of "Goodbye")
  • Thank you - Salamat
  • Where are you from? - Taga asa ka?
  • How do you say... in Cebuano? - Unsa'un ni pag sulti sa Binisaya.
  • How do I get to ...? - Unsa'un nako pag-adto sa...?
  • Do you understand? - Naka sabot ka?
  • How is the weather? - Unsa na'ang panahon?
  • What is that? - Unsa nâ?/Unsa man nâ?
  • What time is it? - Unsa nang orasa?/Unsa oras na?
  • Stop (Imperative) - Hunong sâ.
  • Don't - Ayaw
  • Yes - Oo
  • No - Dili ("no", used for future tense), Wala ("nothing, the absence of", used for past and progressive tenses)
  • O.k. - Sige
  • Great - Maayo
  • Oh! (Interjection) - Sus! (shortened form of Hesus!, roughly equivalent to English interjections "Sheesh", "Christ!", and "Jesus!")

Boholanon (Bol'anon) and Southern Kana (Kana)

Bol’anon, as a dialect, shares many similarities with the southern form of the standard Cebuano dialect, while the southern kana is closest to the Mindanao dialect at the southern area and northern cebu dialect at the northern boundaries.

Speakers of these two dialects can be distinguished by their distinctive modification of syllable-initial “Y” into “J”
These two dialects, like the Mindanao dialects, are notable for their usage of a vocabulary containing longer words, such as Kalatkat and such, though to a lesser extent than that of said dialect.

Southern kana can be further distinguished from Bol’anon by slight vocabulary differences, such as “Arang” for northern kana “Hastan” and standard dialect “Kaayu”, as in “Arang Kamatahon”, “Hastan Kamatahon” and “Matahon Kaayu”, respectively.
  • speakers of other dialects usually call songs in these two dialects “Pleasing to the ears”, probably due to their distinctive “J” accent.

Northern Kana (Kana)

North kana (found in the northern part of leyte), is closest to the northern cebu dialect.

A distinguishing feature of this dialect is the reduction of the velar nasal "NG", final-syllable bilabial nasal "M" and the dental nasal "N" into the dental nasal "N".

The dental nasal"N" likewise, usually morphs into a velar nasal "NG" before the velar consonants "K" and "G", and into "M" before the labial consonants "P", "B", and "M". before w, vowels, and all other consonants, it does not change as keeps its dental nasal nature.

The sequences [A-L-O] [U-L-A] [V-L-V] are changed into [AWO] [UWA] and [V:] respectively, as in standard dialect "Balud" (wave) into "Bawō/Bawod" / Balay (house) into Bāi (house)
  • The V in [V-L-V] represents vowels


Aside from the modification of L into W, L may also change to either Alveolar Flap (ɽ) R or Velar Flap (ɾ) R, and this dialect generally contains less Dental Lateral (L) sounds.
  • both the Alveolar flap and the velar flap Rs are interchangeable with each other.


There may be slight vocabulary differences and shortened words as in:

Buntag -> āga (morning)

Ikaw -> Ika (you)

Amigo -> Higāra / Abai / Bai (Friend)

Dili -> Dē (no)

Mga - > Mā / Mana
  • due to the degree of word-length simplification, length, context, and sometimes, pitch is phonemic, as in “bai!” (dude!) and “bāi!” (house!)

    • the lengthened vowels are pronounced at twice the length of the regular vowels (two moras as opposed to one), but are otherwise pronounced the same.

  • "are" is used in place of "ini" as “ini” is associated by the people of this dialect with the waray people.

  • the sequences “Pag” “Nag” “Mag” are contracted/expanded into “Paga” “Ga” “Maga/Mu” respectively, as in standard dialect “Nag ka’on siya” (he/she is eating) -> “Ga kā’on sha” (he/she is eating)

  • the Um verb “Mi” is replaced by “Hin” if before vowels (Hin’atras) and “Hi” before consonants “Hikāon”

  • the sequence [gk] as in “nagka” is changed by devoicing the “g”, ending up with a geminated consonant [kk] as in “nakka”

  • [a’o] / [aw] as in standard dialect “Ta’o” (human) / “Kaw’” (hat) become [awo] as in “Tawo” and “Kawo” respectively, occasionally, the “wo” of such sequences are slightly nasalized.

  • [Ti/Ty-], [Di/Dy-], [Si/Syi], and [Zi/Zyi]** are almost completely replaced by [Chi], [Ji], [Shi], and [Ji], respectively
    • Ti/Di/Si/Zi have a lower frequency of palatalization, and Zi/Zyi is almost impossible to find, utilized only when speaking English, English-derived words, names, and certain native words deliberately modified.

  • Tu/Du may morph rarely into “Tsu and Dzu(Zu)”, and speaking of rare, rare as in spoken almost exclusively by homosexual communities, certain sub-dialects and for emphasis, such as “Tuba” -> “Tsuba” (Coconut Wine)

  • the sequence [Ts] is almost always replaced by [Ch]; the exception is [Tsu], which keeps its [Ts] form.

  • it may be possible that this dialect utilizes a pitch accent system, as when speaking Tagalog, speakers can be noted for their lack of stress, with only the pitch raising at Tagalog stressed syllables.

  • the glottal fricative [H] may, when palatalized, change to a sound similar to the CH in German ‘Nicht”, for clarity, as a plain Hy (as in hya) is heard as (ya)
    • however, palatalized glottal fricatives are reserved almost exclusively to nonstandard exclamations such as [Hyaa! Onsa re?], in which “Hyaa (Hyā)” serves the same purpose as English “Waah!” or “Yikes!” as in the translation of previous example, which is “Waah! What is this?”

  • vowels may appear in consonant-consonant sequences (excluding consontant-Y), such the “TR” in trabaho, which becomes “TAR”, making Tarabaho (Work) and barko -> baruko/baruto*** (boat)
    • this change is most prominent amongst the new generation.
      • baruto is an archaic word for boat, included here due to its similarity to baruko.

Bisaya [Mindanao]

The Mindanao dialect, known as Mindanao Cebuano, is a unique coalition of several dialects, including even waray and ilon’go, and as such, the vocabulary is mostly reduced to the words in common between the dialects; usually longer words obsolete in the northern nonstandard dialects such as northern cebu and kana, like “Bulan” instead of “Buwan” (moon/month), “Hulam” instead of “Huwam” (borrow), “Kase” instead of “Man Gud” (reasoning marker?) and “Lamang” instead of standard dialect and Tagalog “Lang”, Northern Kana “Ra” and waray “La”.

Speakers of the other dialects may occasionally speak a fake synthesized version of this dialect based on their own, in order to sound “antique” and such, as this dialect is referred to by the speakers of the dialect as “old-fashioned” or “antique”.

An example is “Se Jun (ʑu͍n/dʑu͍n) hikatkat sa kāhoy na hitōbu sa katapāran sa dān” of kana dialect becomes mindanao dialect ”Si Jun (zun/dʑun/dyun) ming kalatkat sa kalahoy nga ming tubo sa katapādan sa dalan”
The davao dialect, like the Luzon bisaya dialect, contains some Tagalog vocabulary, though to a lesser extent.

Bisaya [Luzon]

There is no specific Luzon dialect, as speakers of bisaya in Luzon come from many different regions in Central Visayas and Mindanao, bringing their own dialects with them.

Each of them have some changes in common though, and that is the incorporation of Tagalog words, accent, and some aspects of grammar into their own accents, and as such, bisaya-speaking people from Luzon in the visayas can be easily recognized primarily by their vocabulary.

In Cebu and Mindanao, as what the Cebuanos called it Tagbis (a portmanteau of Tagalog and Bisaya or Cebuano).

External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.
 
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