Posted by: felishkulitz | March 28, 2010

Animals in the Philippines

The American lobster was a staple of the colon...
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Just now, I updated the list of animals in Filipino. Thanks to the local media’s effort in promoting the Philippine tourists and the wildlife welfare, I list down new species of exotic animals.

The following are the new animals added in my list:

  • Barangkas – Horseshoe crab
  • Ranga-ranga/Saang – Spider conch
  • Pitik-pitik – Rock lobster
  • Ayuyu – Mud lobster
  • Kutiba – Mother of pearl

Ayuyu, by the way, looks like a scorpion but walks backwards. I don’t know if I should really add Kutiba since it refers to the shell itself not the shellfish that once lived there. You can find the list in this page. If you have any comments, please, post if here. I need more reaction to know exactly if my posts are interesting.

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Posted by: felishkulitz | January 22, 2010

Tagalog-Maguindanao Vocabulary

Spanish map of Mindanao. Oldest extant map fea...
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Great bodies of water separated us from our brothers. Time brewed the tongue that once we shared. An old book is there, waiting to be discovered. It is generous to share its content to a curious lad. And now, I want to share some of my observations about the fruit of that said book. This caught my interest because it is about the Maguindanao language which is one of the many languages in the Philippines.

This book is entitled, “A Grammar of the Maguindanao Tongue According to the Manner of Speaking it in the Interior and on the South Coast of the Island of Mindanao” and can be found here.

As I browsed in its pages, I notice some words are exactly the same as Tagalog‘s.

  • Langit (heaven/sky)
  • Lupa (earth)
  • Mata (eye)
  • Sakit (pain)

I also notice some words which resemble Tagalog words with minor difference to them. In the list below, the Tagalog words (starting with letter B) have a Maguindanao counterpart in which instead of B, U is used.

  • Bata (child) – Uata
  • Bato (stone) – Uatu
  • Bahay (house) – Ualay

I found some word where in Maguindanao has /r/ sound instead of /d/ or /l/.

  • Sulat (to write) – Surat
  • Dugo (blood) – Rugu
  • Kilay (eyebrow) – Kiray

Finally, there are some equivalents which have rather strange difference.

  • Higa (to lie down) – Miga
  • Buno (to wrestle) – Mbunu
  • Dalawa (two) – Dua
  • Siyam (nine) – Siau
  • Sampu (ten) – Sapulu
  • Hulog (to fall) – Ulug
  • Lakad (to walk) – Lacao
  • Kahoy (wood) – Kayo

If anyone is interested to see or participate in my Google docs about this language, you can find it here.

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Posted by: felishkulitz | November 22, 2009

Yomi no Kata

Obsolete Kanji for ki like in aikidō
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Learning a language is a little exciting but somewhat stressful too. In Japanese language, one cannot say that he mastered that without going through the writing. Kanji alone will make us overwhelmed with its around two thousand characters or so. When one start learning this part of the language, to one’s surprise most of the characters have several if not few readings.

Let us start with the three different readings per characters. Two of these are native to Japan, the kun yomi and nanori. Kun yomi is the common way of reading kanji which have equivalent meaning in Japanese. As for nanori, this type of reading is usually for Japanese names. It could be a persons name or that of a location especially the variances from province to province across the country. It is said that nanori is somewhat related to kun yomi. Anyway, both are native from Japan. The third one, on yomi (‘on’ means sound) was imported from China. Readings from this group imitate Chinese sounds and incorporate it to Nihongo. Typically, those kanji without native Japanese equivalents uses this kind of reading. As for the other kanji with Japanese meaning, they also have on yomi.

Let us now turn our eyes to the readings of groups of kanji. There are groups of kanji in which all the characters are read with on yomi. I believe that scientific terms are the best example of this. There are groups in which all the characters are read with kun yomi. According to this page, most of the family names are read that way. The third way is called juubako (on yomi + kun yomi) and yutou (kun yomi + on yomi). The next is called gikun or jukujikun. This one is neither read the way as mentioned above. Instead, it is a morph of sounds which is related to each of the kanji.

With my level, it is hard to give a list of examples but as I progress on my study, I will try to compile any good examples that I encounter.

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Posted by: felishkulitz | November 21, 2009

Spanish Numbers

* Sources: WDI/World Bank. GDP and GDP per cap...
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Ever since a child, I have been hearing grownup use Spanish numbers in Filipino context. When I first share about this in here, I was too confident that I did not verify each and everyone of the numbers. That led me to a wrong entry in here and I must edit it.

The problem lies in the million, billion and up. I found a page where this case is explained. One million in Spanish should be “un millón” and in the next numbers, the accent is dropped to make it ~millones. I find the next sets unexpected. Billion is mil millones and trillion is billón. Any numbers higher that trillion don’t have Spanish equivalent as I attempt to search from them in this online dictionary. The entries shows that in other countries like the United States, there are more numbers higher that trillion while these are not present in Spanish.

I wonder if Spanish will grow to adopt higher numbers into their vocabulary and if they do, will they base it on the American numerals or will they make it their own way.

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Posted by: felishkulitz | November 21, 2009

Japanese Verbs

Map of Japanese dialects (English version)
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There are so many reference about Japanese language and in everyone, lessons, verbs are always present. While some concentrate on the formal, others add casual in their lessons and still another give introduction to respect language. There are two sites that I discovered in which there are an abundance of information given about these verbs.

The first one can be found here. In the overview, we can read that the author is a student and there is no guarantee to the accuracy of the entries. Despite of this, I still feel that this is worth studying. What I like about this site is that it has the luxury of details in it. For sure, a student of Nihongo like me will love it.

Each pages shows the complexity of Japanese verbs to the point that the reader may be dishearten a bit. Luckily, There are certain patterns which is easy to understand and memorize since they are the basic. To anyone who mastered the basic will find it easy. Below each page are notes in few words plus usage example which is supposed to be present (I hope that the site updates in the near future). The respect language is also included in the said site. There are several additional examples which defy the pattern because keigo is really complex.

The second one can be found here. This is organized in five bases (with five different stem endings) plus the te and ta forms. From this seven main divisions, the lessons grow to subdivisions in which the stems are attached to several words/phrases that completes a certain thought. The link I gave above will bring you to a page that lists 82 links to each lessons plus other links to further information.

On lesson 54 which entitled “Base 5”, you will see three (yodan/ichidan/irregular) tables that organized the stems to make it easier for students to learn. The transitive and intransitive verbs are presented in the “Notes on Japanese Verbs” page.

I hope that you also find these sites useful. Until next time!

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