Ang Sampung Utos ng Diyos

The Ten (10) Commandments of God are listed twice in the Bible — first in Chapter 20 of the Book of Exodus, and also in Chapter 5 of the Deuteronomy. Most Filipinos being Christian, the Bible is read and taught widely in the Philippines.

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root word: lambing

(caring in words too,
but often touchy-feely)

sweet and warm in caressing,
shows fondness and tenderness

Malambing ang pusa.
The cat is affectionate.
(It sweetly rubs itself against you.)

Malalambing ang mga Pilipina.
Filipinas are affectionate.

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This word has different meanings depending on which syllable is accented.

Bunót (accented on the second syllable) refers to a coconut husk commonly used to polish floors. You place your foot on it and use your leg power to move in such a way as to scrub the floor.

Bunot of the Philippines

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An adjective used to describe women who are contemptuous in speech.

root word: taray, meaning arrogance or snobbishness

Ang taray niya!
My, she’s so sassy!

The Tagalog word mataray is used to describe women who answer you back in a sharp, snappy way.

Filipino women are socially expected to be nice and modest. Any woman who answers back bluntly or brusquely is given the label mataray and is associated with pretentiousness and bitchiness.

A Filipina actress who has iconically managed to use her mataray image as an asset is Maricel Soriano.

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The Tagalog word kilig was officially made part of the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) in March/April 2016, apparently due to the influence of the Taglish phrase kilig to the bones.

to tremble, shudder


feeling giddy

to be tickled pink

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Babae: Filipino Woman


Filipina women seem to have acquired negative stereotypes in certain parts of the world. They are seen by many either as mail-order brides or domestic help. It would serve to be reminded that the Philippines has had two female presidents: Corazon Aquino and Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo. Although most Filipinas look forward to having a family, they can also be found in all corners of Philippine society working as engineers and as teachers and in many other careers.

True, the poverty in the country has forced an inordinate number of young women to work as prostitutes and go overseas to be maids or wives of foreign men. But even these Filipinas deserve respect. Next time you meet a Filipina, don’t quickly assume she’s dying to be your sex slave, she just might have a PhD in economics! She might be a nurse at the local hospital or the owner of a small business! She could be a chemist.

The Tagalog word for ‘woman’ is babae and for ‘Filipina’ is Pilipina. Filipinos also use the slang Pinay, a word without negative connotation. It’s the female equivalent of Pinoy.
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root word: kudkód


kudkuran ng niyog
coconut grater

This is a native traditional implement used for scraping the tough coconut flesh off its shell. The blade is attached to the end of a wooden bench on which the person doing the grating sits.

Kudkuran: Coconut Grater

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This word has multiple meanings in the dictionary. The most common is given below.

blame, scold, criticize

reproach, upbraiding

sinusumbat nila sa akin
they always reminding me of (that thing)

Lagi nilang sinusumbat sa akin ang ibinigay nilang tulong.
They’re always coarsely reminding me of the help they gave.

Huwag mo akong sumbatan.
Don’t scold me.

Cultural note: To engage in sumbat is to ungraciously, even rudely, remind someone of an unpleasant thing that the listener wouldn’t want to hear about. Click here for examples!