Is Filipino a language? Let’s Understand its Background

by William Reid

Is Filipino a language? Yes, Filipino is a national language of the Philippines with two other official languages. An Austronesian language is a homogeneous form of Tagalog according to the native dialect (written and spoken) in the capital region (Metro Manila) and urban hubs of the archipelago. 

Filipino is developed and enriched by the Philippines according to the 1987 Constitution. It is used as a tertiary language in the public sphere of the Philippines. Like several other Austronesian dialects, the Filipino language depends on verb-subject-object or subject-verb-object order.

Is Filipino a language?

Remember, Filipino follows a morphosyntactic alignment trigger system common amid Austronesian languages. It is different than tonal languages and may be considered a syllable-timed, pitch-accent language with nine parts of speech.      

Background of Filipino to Understand is Filipino a language  

The Philippines are known as a polyglot state with 184 active languages spoken by ethnolinguistic people. Numerous languages incline from Malayo-Polynesian language because of Austronesian immigration from Taiwan. Additionally, Negritos brought some languages.

The Malayo-Polynesian language is split into other languages that borrow words from Arabic, Tamil, Sanskrit, and Hokkien. In the 16th century, each cultural group lacked even one common language in the Philippine archipelago. According to time chroniclers, chiefs and kings normally communicated in five languages.

Tagalog and Filipino

Tagalog is from Manila (the economic and political center of the Philippines during the American and Spanish eras). It is a famous language in all regions of the Philippines. Filipino may be evolved from Tagalog; therefore, it is related to Tagalog. People consider Filipino and Tagalog interchangeable, but both languages are completely different. 

Filipino Language

Is Filipino a language? Yes, it is a language that evolved from Tagalog, but it is completely different. Indeed, it has Tagalog roots, and you may find several Tagalog words in this language. It can confuse people because they wonder how both languages are different.

Filipino Alphabet  

Along with Tagalog, Filipino has words and sounds from other languages of the Philippines, such as Kapampangan and Cebuano. It uses phonics and words from overseas languages, such as Malay, Arabic, Chinese, Sanskrit, English, and Spanish.

Some words are different to handle in the Tagalog language containing 20 letter alphabets. Remember, Filipino contains 28 letters in the alphabet, such as Z, X, C, J, and K.

Overview of Tagalog

Tagalog (river dweller) is a native language of Manila, and it was declared an official language of the Philippines in 1937. Currently, Tagalog involves the Latin alphabet, but it used the Baybayin alphabet in the past. Remember, it is a script alphabet that has similarities with Indian alphabets. The alphabet contains twenty letters. Some missing letters are c and f or ng that comes amid n and o.

In 1987, Tagalog was changed to Filipino because of some aesthetically unpleasing words. For this reason, Filipino was introduced as an updated Tagalog version to make it aesthetically pleasing to support Ferdinand Marcos’s (president) efforts. Marcos was creating a completely new and pleasing society.

Is Filipino a language?

You have its comprehensive answer now. However, over 20 million Filipinos still speak Tagalog because both languages are close to each other. Some other important languages of the Philippines include Kapampangan, Hiligaynon, Waray and Cebuano.

Is Filipino a language?

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