Visayan languages
Overview
 
The Visayan languages of the Philippines
Languages of the Philippines
In the Philippines, there are between 120 and 175 languages, depending on the method of classification. Four languages no longer have any known speakers. Almost all the Philippine languages belong to the Austronesian language family...

, along with Tagalog
Tagalog language
Tagalog is an Austronesian language spoken as a first language by a third of the population of the Philippines and as a second language by most of the rest. It is the first language of the Philippine region IV and of Metro Manila...

 and Bikol
Bikol language
Central Bicolano , is one of the individual languages of the Bikol languages. It belongs to Coastal Bikol. It is spoken in Bicol Region of the Philippines .-Bikol-Naga:...

, are part of the Central Philippine languages
Central Philippine languages
The Central Philippine languages are the most geographically widespread demonstrated group of languages in the Philippines, being spoken in southern Luzon, Visayas, Mindanao, and Sulu. They are also the most populous, including Tagalog , Bikol, and the major Visayan languages Cebuano, Hiligaynon,...

. Most Visayan languages are spoken in the Visayas
Visayas
The Visayas or Visayan Islands and locally known as Kabisay-an gid, is one of the three principal geographical divisions of the Philippines, along with Mindanao and Luzon. It consists of several islands, primarily surrounding the Visayan Sea, although the Visayas are considered the northeast...

 region but they are also spoken in the Bicol Region
Bicol Region
The Bicol Region or Bicolandia is one of the 17 regions of the Philippines. Its regional center is Legazpi City...

 (particularly in 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:...

), islands south of 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...

 such as those that make up Romblon
Romblon
Romblon is an island province of the Philippines located in the MIMAROPA region. It lies south of Marinduque and Quezon, east of Mindoro, north of Aklan and Capiz, and west of Masbate. Its capital is also named Romblon....

, most of the areas 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...

, and the province of Sulu located southwest of Mindanao. Some residents of Metro Manila
Metro Manila
Metropolitan Manila , the National Capital Region , or simply Metro Manila, is the metropolitan region encompassing the City of Manila and its surrounding areas in the Philippines...

 also speak Visayan.

Over thirty languages constitute the Visayan language family.
Encyclopedia
The Visayan languages of the Philippines
Languages of the Philippines
In the Philippines, there are between 120 and 175 languages, depending on the method of classification. Four languages no longer have any known speakers. Almost all the Philippine languages belong to the Austronesian language family...

, along with Tagalog
Tagalog language
Tagalog is an Austronesian language spoken as a first language by a third of the population of the Philippines and as a second language by most of the rest. It is the first language of the Philippine region IV and of Metro Manila...

 and Bikol
Bikol language
Central Bicolano , is one of the individual languages of the Bikol languages. It belongs to Coastal Bikol. It is spoken in Bicol Region of the Philippines .-Bikol-Naga:...

, are part of the Central Philippine languages
Central Philippine languages
The Central Philippine languages are the most geographically widespread demonstrated group of languages in the Philippines, being spoken in southern Luzon, Visayas, Mindanao, and Sulu. They are also the most populous, including Tagalog , Bikol, and the major Visayan languages Cebuano, Hiligaynon,...

. Most Visayan languages are spoken in the Visayas
Visayas
The Visayas or Visayan Islands and locally known as Kabisay-an gid, is one of the three principal geographical divisions of the Philippines, along with Mindanao and Luzon. It consists of several islands, primarily surrounding the Visayan Sea, although the Visayas are considered the northeast...

 region but they are also spoken in the Bicol Region
Bicol Region
The Bicol Region or Bicolandia is one of the 17 regions of the Philippines. Its regional center is Legazpi City...

 (particularly in 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:...

), islands south of 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...

 such as those that make up Romblon
Romblon
Romblon is an island province of the Philippines located in the MIMAROPA region. It lies south of Marinduque and Quezon, east of Mindoro, north of Aklan and Capiz, and west of Masbate. Its capital is also named Romblon....

, most of the areas 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...

, and the province of Sulu located southwest of Mindanao. Some residents of Metro Manila
Metro Manila
Metropolitan Manila , the National Capital Region , or simply Metro Manila, is the metropolitan region encompassing the City of Manila and its surrounding areas in the Philippines...

 also speak Visayan.

Over thirty languages constitute the Visayan language family. The Visayan language with the most speakers is Cebuano
Cebuano language
Cebuano, referred to by most of its speakers as Bisaya , is an Austronesian language spoken in the Philippines by about 20 million people mostly in the Central Visayas. It is the most widely spoken of the languages within the so-named Bisayan subgroup and is closely related to other Filipino...

, spoken by 20 million people as a native language in Central Visayas, northern and eastern parts of Mindanao. Two other well-known Visayan languages are 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,...

, spoken by 7 million in western Visayas and Waray-Waray
Waray-Waray language
Wáray-Wáray or Samarnon is a language spoken in the provinces of Samar, Northern Samar, Eastern Samar, and in some parts of the Leyte and Biliran in the Philippines...

 spoken by 3 million in eastern Visayas.

Nomenclature

Native speakers of Visayan languages, especially Cebuano, Hiligaynon, and Waray-Waray not only refer to their language by their local name, but also by Bisaya or Binisaya, meaning Visayan language. This is misleading or may lead to confusion as different languages may be called Bisaya by their respective speakers despite their languages being mutually unintelligible. However, languages that are classified within the Visayan language family but spoken natively in places outside of the Visayas
Visayas
The Visayas or Visayan Islands and locally known as Kabisay-an gid, is one of the three principal geographical divisions of the Philippines, along with Mindanao and Luzon. It consists of several islands, primarily surrounding the Visayan Sea, although the Visayas are considered the northeast...

 do not use the self-reference Bisaya or Binisaya. To speakers of Butuanon, Surigaonon, and Masbatenyo, the term Visaya usually refers to Cebuano. Since Tausugs
Tausug language
Tausūg is a language spoken in the province of Sulu in the Philippines, in Malaysia, and in Indonesia by the Tausūg people....

 are mostly Muslims, they view the term Bisaya as a religious term referring to Christian Filipinos (mostly referring either to Cebuano or Hiligaynon as they are the neighboring languages).

The Bisayan language and people of the Philippines are also not to be confused with the Bisaya of Malaysia
Bisaya (Borneo)
The Bisaya are an indigenous people of north-western and along the coast of Borneo, Malaysia, concentrated around the Beaufort district, Padas river in Sabah, Limbang river in northern Sarawak state. They also known as Malay or Islam among the Dusun, Murut or Rungus people. As early as thirteenth...

.

Geographic distribution

The Visayan languages are further divided into five subfamilies. The list below is by no means exhaustive. Asi
Asi language
The Asi language is a Visayan language spoken, along with the Romblomanon and Onhan languages, in the province of Romblon, Philippines. The language is also known as Bantoanon, Calatravanhon, Odionganon, Sibalenhon, Simaranhon, and Bisaya.Specifically, it is spoken on the following islands within...

, Surigaonon
Surigaonon language
Surigaonon is a local Philippine language spoken by Surigaonon people in the province of Surigao del Norte, Surigao del Sur, and some portion of Agusan del Norte especially the towns near the Mainit Lake...

, and Cebuano
Cebuano language
Cebuano, referred to by most of its speakers as Bisaya , is an Austronesian language spoken in the Philippines by about 20 million people mostly in the Central Visayas. It is the most widely spoken of the languages within the so-named Bisayan subgroup and is closely related to other Filipino...

 constitute their own subfamilies.
  • Asi
    Asi language
    The Asi language is a Visayan language spoken, along with the Romblomanon and Onhan languages, in the province of Romblon, Philippines. The language is also known as Bantoanon, Calatravanhon, Odionganon, Sibalenhon, Simaranhon, and Bisaya.Specifically, it is spoken on the following islands within...

    – spoken in towns on Tablas Island
    Tablas Island
    Tablas is the largest of the islands that comprise the province of Romblon in the Philippines.Odiongan, on the west central coast of the island, is a major port and the largest municipality of Romblon in terms of population...

     as well as the islands of Banton, Simara, and Maestro de Campo in Romblon
    Romblon
    Romblon is an island province of the Philippines located in the MIMAROPA region. It lies south of Marinduque and Quezon, east of Mindoro, north of Aklan and Capiz, and west of Masbate. Its capital is also named Romblon....

     province. It is known officially as Bantoanon language.

  • Cebuano
    Cebuano language
    Cebuano, referred to by most of its speakers as Bisaya , is an Austronesian language spoken in the Philippines by about 20 million people mostly in the Central Visayas. It is the most widely spoken of the languages within the so-named Bisayan subgroup and is closely related to other Filipino...

    – includes Boholano, Leytehanon, Mindanao Cebuano and Mindanao Visayan dialects.

  • Surigaonon
    Surigaonon language
    Surigaonon is a local Philippine language spoken by Surigaonon people in the province of Surigao del Norte, Surigao del Sur, and some portion of Agusan del Norte especially the towns near the Mainit Lake...

    (including Jaun-Jaun). May be closest to Cebuano.

  • Central Visayan – includes 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,...

    , Waray-Waray
    Waray-Waray language
    Wáray-Wáray or Samarnon is a language spoken in the provinces of Samar, Northern Samar, Eastern Samar, and in some parts of the Leyte and Biliran in the Philippines...

    , Romblomanon
    Romblomanon language
    Romblomanon is a Visayan language spoken, along with the Asi and Onhan languages, in the province of Romblon in the Philippines. The language is also called Ini, Tiyad Ini, Basi, Niromblon, Sibuyanon, and Bisaya....

     which includes Sibuyan various dialects of Cajidiocanon, San Fernando-Azagra Sibujanon and the Magdiwang-Espana Sibuyanon variety, Ati
    Ati (tribe)
    The Ati is a Negrito ethnic group in Panay, which is located in the Visayas , the central portion of the Philippine archipelago...

    , Capiznon
    Capiznon
    Capiznon is an Austronesian language spoken in Western Visayas in the Philippines. Capiznon is concentrated in the province of Capiz in the northeast of Panay Island....

    , Masbatenyo
    Masbatenyo language
    Masbateño is a Visayan language spoken by more than 600,000 people, primarily in the province of Masbate in the Philippines. It is close to Capiznon and Hiligaynon , both spoken on Panay...

    , Porohanon
    Porohanon language
    Porohanon is a Visayan language spoken in the Camotes Islands in the province of Cebu in the Philippines. Its closest relatives are Hiligaynon and Masbateño and is barely intelligible with Cebuano though it shares 87% of its vocabulary with it....

    , the Bisakol
    Bisakol
    Bisakol refers to the transitional languages in the Central Philippine language family, between Visayan languages and Bikol languages...

     languages of Sorsogon
    Sorsogon
    Sorsogon is a province of the Philippines located in the Bicol Region; it is the southernmost province in Luzon and is subdivided into fourteen municipalities and one city. Its capital is Sorsogon City and borders the province of Albay to the north...

     and Northern Samar
    Northern Samar
    Northern Samar is a province of the Philippines located in the Eastern Visayas region. Its capital is Catarman and is located at the northern portion of the island of Samar. Bordering the province to the south are the provinces of Samar and Eastern Samar...

    , and others.

  • Western Visayan – includes Kinaray-a
    Kinaray-a language
    Kinaray-a is an Austronesian language spoken mainly in Antique Province in the Philippines. It is also spoken in Iloilo province, the south of Capiz Province, and certain villages in Mindanao that trace their roots to Antique Province or Kinaray-a speaking areas of Iloilo and Capiz Provinces...

     (the major language of Antique
    Antique province
    Antique is a province of the Philippines located in the Western Visayas region. Its capital is San Jose and is located at the western portion of Panay Island, bordering Aklan, Capiz, and Iloilo to the east. Antique faces the Sulu Sea to the west....

    ), Aklan languages
    Aklan languages
    Aklan is spoken in the province of Aklan on the island of Panay in the Philippines. It is unique among Philippine languages in that l has become e before a, as in the name Akeanon ....

     (Aklanon, Malaynon), Onhan
    Onhan language
    The Onhan language is a Kinaray-a language spoken, along with the Romblomanon and Asi languages, in the province of Romblon, Philippines. The language is also known as Inunhan and Loocnon....

     or Loocnon (Tablas), Caluyanon
    Caluyanon language
    Caluyanon is a dialect of the Kinaray-a language and spoken in the Caluya Islands, Antique in the Philippines. Most of its speakers use Hiligaynon as their second language.-External links:*...

    , Cuyonon
    Cuyonon language
    Cuyonon is a language spoken on the coast of Palawan, and the Cuyo Islands in the Philippines.-External links:*, cuyonon.org...

    , Ratagnon
    Ratagnon language
    Ratagnon is a language spoken by the Ratagnon people, an indigenous group from Occidental Mindoro. Its speakers are shifting to Tagalog, and it is nearly extinct....

    , and others.

  • Tausug
    Tausug language
    Tausūg is a language spoken in the province of Sulu in the Philippines, in Malaysia, and in Indonesia by the Tausūg people....

    – spoken in Jolo
    Jolo Island
    Jolo is a volcanic island in the southwest Philippines. It is located in the Sulu Archipelago, between Borneo and Mindanao, and has a population of approximately 300,000 people....

    , Sulu; Palawan
    Palawan
    Palawan is an island province of the Philippines located in the MIMAROPA region or Region 4. Its capital is Puerto Princesa City, and it is the largest province in the country in terms of total area of jurisdiction. The islands of Palawan stretch from Mindoro in the northeast to Borneo in the...

    ; Basilan
    Basilan
    The Province of Basilan is an island province of the Philippines within the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao . Basilan is the largest and northernmost of the major islands of the Sulu Archipelago and is located just off the southern coast of Zamboanga Peninsula...

    ; Tawi-Tawi
    Tawi-Tawi
    Tawi-Tawi is an island province of the Philippines located in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao . The capital of Tawi-Tawi is Bongao. The province is the southernmost of the country sharing sea borders with the Malaysian State of Sabah and the Indonesian East Kalimantan province. To the...

    ; and Zamboanga City
    Zamboanga City
    The City of Zamboanga : is a highly urbanized, independent and a chartered city located in Mindanao, Philippines....

     and environs. Also spoken in Indonesia (Kalimantan
    Kalimantan
    In English, the term Kalimantan refers to the Indonesian portion of the island of Borneo, while in Indonesian, the term "Kalimantan" refers to the whole island of Borneo....

    ), and Malaysia (Sabah
    Sabah
    Sabah is one of 13 member states of Malaysia. It is located on the northern portion of the island of Borneo. It is the second largest state in the country after Sarawak, which it borders on its southwest. It also shares a border with the province of East Kalimantan of Indonesia in the south...

    ). It has been suggested to be more closely related to the Mansakan languages
    Mansakan languages
    The Mansakan languages are a group of languages spoken in the Philippines. Davawenyo is the principal native language of the Davao region, though there is a high degree of bilingualism in Cebuano.-Overview:The Mansakan languages are:*Davawenyo*Eastern...

     than to Visayan.

Table of speakers

Language ISO 639
Lang Code
Speakers
Aklanon akl 394,545 (1990 census)
Ati
Ati (tribe)
The Ati is a Negrito ethnic group in Panay, which is located in the Visayas , the central portion of the Philippine archipelago...

ati 1,500 (1980 SIL)
Bantoanon
Asi language
The Asi language is a Visayan language spoken, along with the Romblomanon and Onhan languages, in the province of Romblon, Philippines. The language is also known as Bantoanon, Calatravanhon, Odionganon, Sibalenhon, Simaranhon, and Bisaya.Specifically, it is spoken on the following islands within...

 (or Asi
Asi language
The Asi language is a Visayan language spoken, along with the Romblomanon and Onhan languages, in the province of Romblon, Philippines. The language is also known as Bantoanon, Calatravanhon, Odionganon, Sibalenhon, Simaranhon, and Bisaya.Specifically, it is spoken on the following islands within...

)
bno 200,000 (2002 SIL)
Butuanon
Butuanon language
Butuanon is an Austronesian language spoken in Agusan del Norte and Agusan del Sur, with some native speakers in Misamis Oriental and Surigao del Norte. According to an article in the Manila Times, as of 2007 Butuanon is spoken by fewer than 500 youngsters in Butuan itself.Butuanon is very closely...

btw 34,547 (1990 census)
Caluyanon
Caluyanon language
Caluyanon is a dialect of the Kinaray-a language and spoken in the Caluya Islands, Antique in the Philippines. Most of its speakers use Hiligaynon as their second language.-External links:*...

clu 30,000 (1994 SIL)
Capiznon cps 638,653 (2000)
Cebuano
Cebuano language
Cebuano, referred to by most of its speakers as Bisaya , is an Austronesian language spoken in the Philippines by about 20 million people mostly in the Central Visayas. It is the most widely spoken of the languages within the so-named Bisayan subgroup and is closely related to other Filipino...

ceb 20,043,502 in the Philippines (1995 census)
Cuyonon
Cuyonon language
Cuyonon is a language spoken on the coast of Palawan, and the Cuyo Islands in the Philippines.-External links:*, cuyonon.org...

cyo 123,384 (1990 census)
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,...

hil 7,000,000 in the Philippines (1995)
Inonhan
Onhan language
The Onhan language is a Kinaray-a language spoken, along with the Romblomanon and Asi languages, in the province of Romblon, Philippines. The language is also known as Inunhan and Loocnon....

loc 85,829 (2000 WCD)
Kinaray-A
Kinaray-a language
Kinaray-a is an Austronesian language spoken mainly in Antique Province in the Philippines. It is also spoken in Iloilo province, the south of Capiz Province, and certain villages in Mindanao that trace their roots to Antique Province or Kinaray-a speaking areas of Iloilo and Capiz Provinces...

krj 377,529 (1994 SIL)
Malaynon mlz 8,500 (1973 SIL)
Masbateño msb 350,000 (2002 SIL)
Porohanon
Porohanon language
Porohanon is a Visayan language spoken in the Camotes Islands in the province of Cebu in the Philippines. Its closest relatives are Hiligaynon and Masbateño and is barely intelligible with Cebuano though it shares 87% of its vocabulary with it....

prh 23,000
Ratagnon
Ratagnon language
Ratagnon is a language spoken by the Ratagnon people, an indigenous group from Occidental Mindoro. Its speakers are shifting to Tagalog, and it is nearly extinct....

btn 2 to 3 (2000 Wurm) (Nearly extinct)
Romblomanon
Romblomanon language
Romblomanon is a Visayan language spoken, along with the Asi and Onhan languages, in the province of Romblon in the Philippines. The language is also called Ini, Tiyad Ini, Basi, Niromblon, Sibuyanon, and Bisaya....

rol 200,000 (1987 SIL)
Sorsogon
Sorsogon
Sorsogon is a province of the Philippines located in the Bicol Region; it is the southernmost province in Luzon and is subdivided into fourteen municipalities and one city. Its capital is Sorsogon City and borders the province of Albay to the north...

, Masbate
bks 85,000 (1975 census)
Sorsogon
Sorsogon
Sorsogon is a province of the Philippines located in the Bicol Region; it is the southernmost province in Luzon and is subdivided into fourteen municipalities and one city. Its capital is Sorsogon City and borders the province of Albay to the north...

, Waray
srv 185,000 (1975 census)
Surigaonon
Surigaonon language
Surigaonon is a local Philippine language spoken by Surigaonon people in the province of Surigao del Norte, Surigao del Sur, and some portion of Agusan del Norte especially the towns near the Mainit Lake...

sul 344,974 (1990 census)
Tausug
Tausug language
Tausūg is a language spoken in the province of Sulu in the Philippines, in Malaysia, and in Indonesia by the Tausūg people....

tsg 900,000 in the Philippines (2000 SIL) (Population total all countries: 1,022,000)
Waray-Waray
Waray-Waray language
Wáray-Wáray or Samarnon is a language spoken in the provinces of Samar, Northern Samar, Eastern Samar, and in some parts of the Leyte and Biliran in the Philippines...

war 5,438,889 (1999 census)
. . Total 33,463,654

Internal classification

David Zorc gives the following internal classification for the Visayan languages (Zorc 1977:32). The five primary branches are South, Cebuan, Central, Banton, and West. However, Zorc notes that the Visayan language family is more like a dialect continuum
Dialect continuum
A dialect continuum, or dialect area, was defined by Leonard Bloomfield as a range of dialects spoken across some geographical area that differ only slightly between neighboring areas, but as one travels in any direction, these differences accumulate such that speakers from opposite ends of the...

 rather than a set of readily distinguishable languages. The South Visayan languages are considered to have diverged first, followed by Cebuan and then the rest of the three branches. Also, in the Visayan region, Romblon
Romblon
Romblon is an island province of the Philippines located in the MIMAROPA region. It lies south of Marinduque and Quezon, east of Mindoro, north of Aklan and Capiz, and west of Masbate. Its capital is also named Romblon....

 Province has the most linguistic diversity, as languages from three primary Visayan branches are spoken there.

A total of 36 speech varieties are listed below. Individual languages are marked by italics.
  • Visayan
    • 1. South (spoken on the eastern coast 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...

      )
      • Butuan-Tausug
        • Tausug
          Tausug language
          Tausūg is a language spoken in the province of Sulu in the Philippines, in Malaysia, and in Indonesia by the Tausūg people....

        • Butuanon
          Butuanon language
          Butuanon is an Austronesian language spoken in Agusan del Norte and Agusan del Sur, with some native speakers in Misamis Oriental and Surigao del Norte. According to an article in the Manila Times, as of 2007 Butuanon is spoken by fewer than 500 youngsters in Butuan itself.Butuanon is very closely...

      • Surigao
        • Surigaonon
          Surigaonon language
          Surigaonon is a local Philippine language spoken by Surigaonon people in the province of Surigao del Norte, Surigao del Sur, and some portion of Agusan del Norte especially the towns near the Mainit Lake...

          , Jaun-Jaun, Kantilan, Naturalis
    • 2. Cebuan (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...

      , northern 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...

      , and eastern Negros
      Negros
      Negros is an island of the Philippines located in the Visayas, at . It is the third largest island in the country, with a land area of 13,328 km²...

      )
      • Cebuan
        • Cebuano
          Cebuano language
          Cebuano, referred to by most of its speakers as Bisaya , is an Austronesian language spoken in the Philippines by about 20 million people mostly in the Central Visayas. It is the most widely spoken of the languages within the so-named Bisayan subgroup and is closely related to other Filipino...

          , Boholano
          Boholano language
          Boholano is a variant of Cebuano spoken in the province of Bohol in the Philippines and eastern parts of Southern Leyte...

          ,
    • 3. Central (spoken across most of the Visayan region)
      • Warayan
        • Waray-Samar
          • Waray
            Waray-Waray language
            Wáray-Wáray or Samarnon is a language spoken in the provinces of Samar, Northern Samar, Eastern Samar, and in some parts of the Leyte and Biliran in the Philippines...

            , Samar-Leyte
          • Northern 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...

        • Gubat (South Sorsogon
          Sorsogon
          Sorsogon is a province of the Philippines located in the Bicol Region; it is the southernmost province in Luzon and is subdivided into fourteen municipalities and one city. Its capital is Sorsogon City and borders the province of Albay to the north...

          )
      • Peripheral
        • Sorsogon
          Sorsogon
          Sorsogon is a province of the Philippines located in the Bicol Region; it is the southernmost province in Luzon and is subdivided into fourteen municipalities and one city. Its capital is Sorsogon City and borders the province of Albay to the north...

           (North), Masbate
        • Camotes
          Camotes Islands
          The Camotes Islands are a group of islands that form part of the province of Cebu, in the Philippines. The island group is located east of Cebu Island, southwest of Leyte Island, and north of Bohol Island....

        • Bantayan
          Bantayan Island
          Bantayan Island is in the Visayan Sea, Philippines, located just west off the northern tip of Cebu Island. The island, politically a part of the Province of Cebu, is about wide by long, with a total population of 120,101, as of the 2000 census. It is also the main and largest island of the...

        • 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,...

           (Ilonggo), Capiznon, Kawayan
      • Romblon
        Romblon
        Romblon is an island province of the Philippines located in the MIMAROPA region. It lies south of Marinduque and Quezon, east of Mindoro, north of Aklan and Capiz, and west of Masbate. Its capital is also named Romblon....

        • Romblomanon
          Romblomanon language
          Romblomanon is a Visayan language spoken, along with the Asi and Onhan languages, in the province of Romblon in the Philippines. The language is also called Ini, Tiyad Ini, Basi, Niromblon, Sibuyanon, and Bisaya....

    • 4. Banton/Odiongan (spoken in northwestern Romblon
      Romblon
      Romblon is an island province of the Philippines located in the MIMAROPA region. It lies south of Marinduque and Quezon, east of Mindoro, north of Aklan and Capiz, and west of Masbate. Its capital is also named Romblon....

       Province)
      • Banton
        Asi language
        The Asi language is a Visayan language spoken, along with the Romblomanon and Onhan languages, in the province of Romblon, Philippines. The language is also known as Bantoanon, Calatravanhon, Odionganon, Sibalenhon, Simaranhon, and Bisaya.Specifically, it is spoken on the following islands within...

        • Banton
          Banton, Romblon
          Banton is a 5th class municipality in the province of Romblon, Philippines. According to the 2000 census, it has a population of 6,769 people in 1,478 households...

          , Odionganon
          Odiongan, Romblon
          Odiongan is a 2nd class municipality in the province of Romblon, Philippines. According to the 2000 census, it has a population of 39,069 people in 8,624 households...

          , Sibale
          Maestro de Campo Island
          Maestro de Campo Island or in some records Maestre de Campo Island is the westernmost island in the province of Romblon in the Philippines. It has one municipality named Concepcion. The island is also called Sibale and its inhabitants call themselves Sibalenhons...

    • 5. West
      • Aklan (spoken in northern Panay
        Panay
        Panay may refer to*Panay Island*Panay *Panay, Capiz*Panay River*Panay Gulf* USS Panay *Panay incident...

        )
        • Aklanon
      • Kinarayan (spoken in Panay
        Panay
        Panay may refer to*Panay Island*Panay *Panay, Capiz*Panay River*Panay Gulf* USS Panay *Panay incident...

        )
        • Pandan, Kinaray-a
          Kinaray-a language
          Kinaray-a is an Austronesian language spoken mainly in Antique Province in the Philippines. It is also spoken in Iloilo province, the south of Capiz Province, and certain villages in Mindanao that trace their roots to Antique Province or Kinaray-a speaking areas of Iloilo and Capiz Provinces...

          , Gimaras
          Guimaras
          Guimaras is an island province of the Philippines located in the Western Visayas region. Among the smallest provinces, its capital is Jordan. The island is located in the Panay Gulf, between the islands of Panay and Negros...

      • North-Central (spoken on Tablas Island
        Tablas Island
        Tablas is the largest of the islands that comprise the province of Romblon in the Philippines.Odiongan, on the west central coast of the island, is a major port and the largest municipality of Romblon in terms of population...

         and the southern tip of Mindoro
        Mindoro
        Mindoro is the seventh-largest island in the Philippines. It is located off the coast of Luzon, and northeast of Palawan. The southern coast of Mindoro forms the northeastern extremum of the Sulu Sea.-History:...

        )
        • Bulalakaw, Dispoholnon, Looknon
          Looc, Romblon
          Looc is a 4th class municipality in the province of Romblon, Philippines. According to the 2000 census, it has a population of 19,898 people in 4,262 households.- Local officials :-Population of Looc at various times:...

          , Alcantaranon
          Alcantara, Romblon
          Alcantara is a fifth class municipality in the province of Romblon, Philippines. According to the 2000 census, it has a population of 14,144 people in 2,905 households.-Barangays:Alcantara is politically subdivided into 12 barangays:* Bonlao* Calagonsao...

      • Kuyan (spoken in the archipelagos west of Panay
        Panay
        Panay may refer to*Panay Island*Panay *Panay, Capiz*Panay River*Panay Gulf* USS Panay *Panay incident...

         and Romblon
        Romblon
        Romblon is an island province of the Philippines located in the MIMAROPA region. It lies south of Marinduque and Quezon, east of Mindoro, north of Aklan and Capiz, and west of Masbate. Its capital is also named Romblon....

        , as well as the southern tip of Mindoro
        Mindoro
        Mindoro is the seventh-largest island in the Philippines. It is located off the coast of Luzon, and northeast of Palawan. The southern coast of Mindoro forms the northeastern extremum of the Sulu Sea.-History:...

        )
        • Datagnon, Santa Teresa, Semirara
        • Kuyonon
          Cuyonon language
          Cuyonon is a language spoken on the coast of Palawan, and the Cuyo Islands in the Philippines.-External links:*, cuyonon.org...


Reconstruction

David Zorc's reconstruction of Proto-Visayan had 15 consonant
Consonant
In articulatory phonetics, a consonant is a speech sound that is articulated with complete or partial closure of the vocal tract. Examples are , pronounced with the lips; , pronounced with the front of the tongue; , pronounced with the back of the tongue; , pronounced in the throat; and ,...

s and 4 vowel
Vowel
In phonetics, a vowel is a sound in spoken language, such as English ah! or oh! , pronounced with an open vocal tract so that there is no build-up of air pressure at any point above the glottis. This contrasts with consonants, such as English sh! , where there is a constriction or closure at some...

s (Zorc 1977:201). Vowel length, primary stress (penultimate and ultimate), and secondary stress (pre-penultimate) are also reconstructed by Zorc.
caption | Proto-Visayan Consonants
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...

Plosive Voiceless p t k ʔ
Voiced b d ɡ
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
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
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

caption | Proto-Visayan Vowels
Height Front
Front vowel
A front vowel is a type of vowel sound used in some spoken languages. The defining characteristic of a front vowel is that the tongue is positioned as far in front as possible in the mouth without creating a constriction that would be classified as a consonant. Front vowels are sometimes also...

Central
Central vowel
A central vowel is a type of vowel sound used in some spoken languages. The defining characteristic of a central vowel is that the tongue is positioned halfway between a front vowel and a back vowel...

Back
Back vowel
A back vowel is a type of vowel sound used in spoken languages. The defining characteristic of a back vowel is that the tongue is positioned as far back as possible in the mouth without creating a constriction that would be classified as a consonant. Back vowels are sometimes also called dark...

Close
Close vowel
A close vowel is a type of vowel sound used in many spoken languages. The defining characteristic of a close vowel is that the tongue is positioned as close as possible to the roof of the mouth without creating a constriction that would be classified as a consonant.This term is prescribed by the...

i /i/ u /u/
Mid
Mid vowel
A mid vowel is a vowel sound used in some spoken languages. The defining characteristic of a mid vowel is that the tongue is positioned mid-way between an open vowel and a close vowel...

ə /ə/
Open
Open vowel
An open vowel is defined as a vowel sound in which the tongue is positioned as far as possible from the roof of the mouth. Open vowels are sometimes also called low vowels in reference to the low position of the tongue...

a /a/

See also

  • Bisaya Script
    Visayan script
    Visayan script or Bisaya script - is an ancient pre-Filipino writing system used by the Visayan people, it's member of the Brahmic family, Suwat bisaya is an Abugida or an alpha-syllabary writing system like most writing system used in South East Asia, where any consonant is pronounced with a...

  • Bisakol languages
  • Bisalog
    Bisalog
    Bisalog is a portmanteau of the words 'Bisaya' and 'Tagalog' which refers to either a Visayan language or Tagalog being infused with words or expressions from the other....

  • 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...

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