KIWIG

This is not a standard Tagalog word but it refers to a werebeast (like the werewolf or lycanthrope of the West) in the Visayan province of Aklan.

Instead of turning into a wolf, a kiwig changes into a black dog or a wild boar at midnight.

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About Filipino Folktales

The Tagalog for ‘folk tale’ or ‘folk story’ is kuwentong-bayan.

Folklore is kaalamang-bayan (traditional knowledge of the people).

Filipino folktales are stories that form part of the oral tradition in the Philippines. They have been passed on generation to generation by word of mouth rather than by writing, and thus the stories have been modified by successive retellings before they were written down and recorded.

Folktales in general include legends, fables, jokes, tall stories and fairy tales. Many of the folktales in the Philippines involve mythical creatures and magical transformations.

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Ang Pagong at Ang Matsing

This is a Tagalog version of the Philippine folktale about a turtle, a monkey, and a banana tree. As with most folk stories, there are many variations in the details, but most support that the turtle is the protagonist and the monkey is the not-so-wise character.

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Abadeha, Filipina Cinderella

The story of Abadeha is the Philippine version of Cinderella.

Philippine Story in English

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Examples of Filipino Folktales

The most famous work on Filipino folktales is Philippine Folk Tales by Mabel Cook Cole. It is the first comprehensive popular collection of folk tales of the islands. She spent four years among the tribes of the Philippines in the early 20th century while her husband was engaged in ethnological work for the Field Museum of Natural History. Continue reading “Examples of Filipino Folktales”

The Tortoise & The Monkey

This is one version in English of the Philippine folktale about a turtle, a monkey and a banana tree. You can read a slightly different version in Tagalog here.


Once upon a time, a tortoise and a monkey found a banana tree floating amidst the waves of a river. It was a very fine tree, with large green leaves, and with roots just as if it had been pulled off by a storm. They took it ashore.

“Let us divide it,” said the tortoise, “and plant each its portion.” They cut it in the middle, and the monkey, as the stronger, took for himself the upper part of the tree, thinking that it would grow quicker for it had leaves. The tortoise, as the weaker, had the lower part, that looked ugly, although it had roots. After some days, they met. Continue reading “The Tortoise & The Monkey”

The Legend of Mount Kanlaon

There once lived on the island of Negros a princess named Anina who lived a very sheltered life. Continue reading “The Legend of Mount Kanlaon”

Ang Aso at ang Uwak

Ito ay isang halimbawa ng pabula. This is an example of a fable.

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