Intersections: Gender and Sexuality in Asia and the Pacific
Monograph 1: The Philippines at the Turn of the Sixteenth Century
Malcolm W Mintz
The early religion of the Philippines was to change dramatically with the arrival of the Spanish and the Catholic missionaries. From an animist religion where worship of ancestors played a central role and where the centre of religious life was often a priestess, the Philippines was to be introduced to Catholicism and many of its people converted over a relatively short period of time.
The missionaries of the Catholic religious orders in the Philippines did not preach in Spanish, nor did they expect their new converts to learn that language. The missionaries learned the local languages, albeit to varying degrees, and used these languages for religious instruction.
This chapter looks at how the language of one of the regions, Bikol, was adapted to carry a Christian message. The early sections summarise the coming of the Spanish and arrival of the religious orders. This is followed by a discussion of the religious beliefs in the region when the Spanish arrived. Examined are ancestral spirits, religious leaders, rituals, and some of the supernatural creatures which were believed to inhabit the area. The chapter then goes on to the introduction of Christianity. The concepts which are discussed, along with the vocabulary for such concepts, are baptism, communion and confession, sins and sinners, heaven, hell and the devil, exorcism and salvation, God, Christ, the saints and priests, death and resurrection, prayer, homage and supplication, sermons and religious teachings, religious observations and celebrations, the church and mass, altars and religious objects, and the construction and decoration of the church.
The Spanish first arrived in the Bikol region on the island of Masbate in 1567 sailing from Leyte. There they discovered gold mines which were to bring them back to the island two years later.
A subsequent expedition left from Manila, crossed overland from Laguna to the Pacific coast of Luzon near Mauban, and then travelled by boat to what is now Camarines Norte, reaching the gold mines of Paracale in 1571.
From 1572, the Spanish began to spread their rule over the Bikol provinces, setting up the first permanent settlement in the Bikol River basin in Camarines Sur at Libon in 1573, and moving on to dominate the remaining Bikol provinces of Albay, Sorsogon and Catanduanes in 1574.
In 1579, Naga in the Bikol River basin was chosen as the Spanish headquarters and renamed Ciudad de Cáceres (Nueva Cáceres).
The Spanish Crown and Catholic Church were interdependent. The Church had granted to the Spanish monarchs powers over the administration of Church's revenues and the selection of ecclesiastical personnel in the Indies. In return, the Crown undertook conversion of the newly-subjugated peoples to Christianity.
On the return to Masbate in 1569, the leader of the Spanish expedition was accompanied by an Augustinian priest, Fray Alonso Jimenez. Early conversions and baptisms were made on the islands of Masbate, Ticao and Burias, and on the adjacent mainland of Luzon in what is now Sorsogon, Albay and Camarines Sur at Nabua.
The Franciscans arrived in the region in 1577 answering a request to send more priests to the region. Subsequent evangelisation of the region was turned over to the Franciscans, the Augustinians retaining the area where they did their first baptisms on Masbate, Ticao and Burias.
In 1583, a policy called reducción 'reduction' was begun. Bikolanos, who lived in widely dispersed areas, were required to resettle in towns where their conversion to Christianity could be more closely monitored. Eleven villages were established, called doctrinas. From 1585 the development of these doctrinas began to increase as did conversions. By the end of the sixteenth century there were fifty Franciscan mission houses with ninety-seven priests and twenty-three lay brothers.
The encomienda system was a system of rewards given by the Spanish Crown to the colonisers of a new area. They were given an area of newly-conquered territory, along with its inhabitants. In return for the labour and tributes of these people, the encomenderos were expected to protect them from outside aggression and instruct them in the Catholic faith, that is, teach them Catholic doctrine and administer the sacraments. Specifically this meant preparing them for baptism by teaching them the Pater Noster, the Ave Maria, the Credo and the Ten Commandments. This trust was often, however, violated and the priests found themselves stepping in as intermediaries to protect the people on these estates.
There were two types of encomiendas: royal, owned by the crown, and private, owned by individuals. The earliest encomiendas assigned on Luzon were in the Bikol region on the island of Masbate in February 1571. By 1593 there were thirty-six encomiendas in the region. The encomienda system lasted until the end of the seventeenth century when it was abolished.
Among the Franciscan friars to go to Bikol was Father Marcos de Lisboa who remained in the region from 1602 until 1611. During this time he compiled the Vocabulario de la lengua Bicol, probably the finest early dictionary of any Philippine language.
Lisboa's Vocabulario was intended for use by Spanish priests. In addition to traditional meanings, we begin to see new meanings added, primarily in example sentences, to enable priests to run Christian religious services and carry out conversions.
It is unclear whether Lisboa incorporated usage in example sentences which was already evident through the thirty-five years of missionary activity which preceded his arrival in the Bikol region, or whether he introduced to Bikol new usage for existing terms which he felt would be helpful to priests in carrying out their mission in the region. It is likely that the Vocabulario reflects both of these possibilities.
Some priests were fluent in Philippine languages. Others made do with the basic vocabulary of confession and the celebration of the mass. Some of the same sentences included in the Lisboa dictionary may have been included for use by just such priests.
New vocabulary is generally added in three ways: by giving completely new meanings to traditional words, by extending the meaning of traditional words, and by introducing loan words from another language. Bikol shows all of these changes, although Lisboa only has loan words in example sentences, not as headwords. These, however, later become accepted as Bikol words.
New vocabulary is often introduced when an existing word which might possibly be extended is too loaded with traditional meaning to serve a new purpose. For example, traditional words for 'altar' and 'god' were too closely associated with early religious beliefs to be comfortably adapted to Christianity. The general policy was, in fact, to introduce new vocabulary for Christian terms to avoid any association with earlier religions considered pagan.
Change did not end with Lisboa. Some of the terms used in unique ways by Lisboa continue to be used in modern Bikol. Other terms which he recorded or extended with new meanings have disappeared. Still others were introduced after Lisboa, many in the subsequent publication of the Doctrina Christiana. Examples of all of these developments may be seen in this chapter.
What type of religion did the Spanish find when they arrived in the Bikol region at the end of the sixteenth century? Firstly they would have found that the various communities they encountered had women as their religious heads. These were called the balyán and it was to these leaders that the community turned for help and guidance during times of birth, illness or death. Assisting the balyán was the asóg, described as effeminate males imitating women in actions and dress, and not usually marrying. There was not just one balyán associated with a community, but as many as could claim the possession of religious and healing powers.
The balyán would be called on to perform particular rituals if one were ill. These included general rituals such as ulád and úliˈ, and more specific rituals such as bathing the ill, called túbas, fanning them with a hand fan, called paypáy, squeezing the liquid of moistened lemon or lime leaves into their eyes, called pusáw, chanting over them, tigáy, or treating them by touching them on the head with a chewed betel nut mixture, hidhíd. A person lying in a coma could be restored to consciousness by performance of the ritual called sakóm. Here the balyán called the soul which had escaped from the body and carried it back in bánay leaves (the topmost fronds of the anáhaw palm) which she then shook over the body of the one who lay unconscious.
In death, all classes of society would also turn to the balyán. She could communicate with the dead through a ritual called binangónan. The time after death could be eased by the removal of any evil harboured in the body. This was done by the balyán using young citrus branches moistened in water to strike some article of gold removed from the body of the dead at the time of interment. Upon the death of a chief or other important person in the village, the balyán would be called upon to offer up a sacrifice so that the aswáng would not devour the entrails of the newly deceased. A favourite slave would be killed and the entrails offered to the aswáng in a ceremony called hugót.
There were other rituals as well performed by the balyán central to life of the early Bikolanos. A young child could be put under the care of ancestral spirits by the balyán carrying it to various parts of the house in a ritual called yúkod. There were also general chants, called suragí', and prayers which the congregation would acknowledge with the expression áhom.
The early Bikolanos worshiped their ancestors, collectively called aníto. A variety of statues, generally of wood, sometimes of stone, would be made in worship of these ancestors, such as tangó', tatáwo, parangpán as well as ladáwan. A particular statue used in sacrifices by the balyán was called lagdóng. There were other terms for these ancestral spirits as well, such as diwátaˈ, and more specific terms such as bathálaˈ referring to an aníto which brings good fortune to those it accompanies. These last two terms come ultimately from Sanskrit, probably through Malay or other languages to the south of the Philippines in what is now Malaysia and Indonesia.
Worship of one's ancestors was carried out with various ceremonies. One of these, called átang, involved a ceremonial offering of food set out, most likely, on a bamboo altar called salángat, and then later consumed by those attending the ceremony. Another ceremonial feast was called gámit, generally held for someone in the family, such as a child.
Ceremonies along with prayers were held in a small hut called guláng-gúlang. This was a common location for ancestor worship. Later sources also refer to muˈóg as a house for the worship of aníto built either in the branches of a tree or in the open field, although to Lisboa this was simply a tree house or a platform built in the upper reaches of a tree.
An aníto was generally seen as a good influence and charms comprising a bit of shell roughly carved into the image of a particularly admired aníto, called kabál, could serve to protect one from harm. There were, however, also aníto who were not so kind and could be used to maintain order in a society. Women of high status in a community or those recognised for their beauty who fell ill when visiting agricultural fields or other specific locations, something called dáˈay, were seen to have fallen under the influence of a particular aníto.
If we look at what the early Bikolanos were afraid of we find many creatures lurking in the imaginary environment to keep them from straying too far. There was, and still is, the aswáng, a type of supernatural creature, modelled probably on the bat, which attacked humans who were most vulnerable, the ill, the dying, the pregnant, the newly born and even the dead. These were creatures that revelled in the eating of human flesh and the drinking of human blood. They came in many types and were capable of a variety of different types of damage. Starting with the more innocuous we had an aswáng which became mildly intoxicated by the bad smell of something dirty, and sought out the same smell again, called sinasaˈbán. Among the more frightening was the andudunó, an aswáng that found delight and nourishment in inhaling the odour and sucking the blood of a woman in labour, the sick and the dying. No less frightening was the silagán, an aswáng that could see the entrails through the body of the living, and proceeded to tear into the body, feeding on the entrails and liver, causing the victim to die. There was also the aswáng called anananggál, which was capable of detaching its upper portion from the waist, the upper portion then flying about in search of saliva to drink and human flesh to feast on.
But there were more than the aswáng to be afraid of. There were numerous other creatures inhabiting the riverbanks, mountains and forests, places you would go to at great personal risk, and creatures lurking in the shadows or coming out at dusk and moving about in the night when you had best be home and in bed.
Inhabiting the mountains was a creature with the feet and mane of a goat and the face of a man called láki or unglóˈ; along the river banks was the angungulúˈol, an animal similar to a large ape which, when coming across a person, embraced them and did not let go until they died; and in the forest was a creature no doubt based upon stories of the tiger, the sarimáw, described as fierce and brutal, tearing those it came across apart with its sharp claws. There were other creatures as well, such as those whose eyes flashed fire, called bunggó, and more innocent creatures, such as the ápoˈ, described as small and human-like, living in little earth mounds and possessing magical powers capable of turning people into animals such as toads and snakes.
This was the early religious world of the Bikol region when the Spanish friars came upon it during the last quarter of the sixteenth century, and which they were to change forever with the introduction of Christianity. It was not an instant change, but change that probably took the better part of the first 150 years of Spanish colonisation. As the new religion was gradually established, and came to be more central to the lives of the Bikolanos, support for the older religion gradually gave way, and what was central and important became marginal and less significant.
The balyán did not immediately disappear from society as a religious leader, but as the new religion became more dominant, Bikolanos turned less to her for comfort and cure during times of death and illness, and so her role in society was diminished. There was an immediate attempt by priests to destroy the symbols of early religion in the Philippines. Sacred groves were cut down, stone idols were smashed, and wooden idols, altars and amulets burned. These were seen as symbols of a pagan past which had to be eliminated so that the new religion could flourish. The Bikol region was lucky to have had a representative of the Church such as Fr. Marcos de Lisboa who recorded without prejudicial comment both the early and changing circumstances of late-sixteenth and early-seventeenth century Bikol society.
Baptism signalled conversion to Christianity, and while this had a slow start in the Philippines, by the time Lisboa arrived in the Bikol region, baptisms throughout the Philippines numbered close to 300,000. Baptisms were not supposed to be performed on those who knew nothing of the Christian religion. Minimally, converts should have been able to recite the Pater Noster 'Our Father who art in heaven ,' the Credo 'I believe in God the Father Almighty ,' the Ave Maria 'Hail Mary, full of grace ' and the Ten Commandments. The encomenderos, who preceded the Spanish missionaries to the Philippines, were entrusted with the task of preparing those working on their estates with such early religious education. Some did, but others simply took advantage and used the labour of their charges while giving little in return.
Baptism and conversion to Christianity could be facilitated by particular fortuitous events, in particular recovery from disease. It was also advantageous to baptise a leader of the community so that the rest of the community would follow by example. Where leaders were reluctant to embrace a new religion, some would allow their children to be baptised, the family thereby benefitting in case the new religion turned out to be as miraculous as promised. This would also serve as an example to the community and could draw new converts. Baptism, however, could also be delayed by the early Bikolanos' continued adherence to certain traditional customs, such as divorce, drunkenness (see Sections 6(iii), 8) and usury which were against the teachings of the Church.
The term for baptism in Bikol is bunyág. Lisboa notes that this term originally meant 'to sprinkle with water', but also goes on to say that this meaning was no longer used in Bikol. This probably indicates that bunyág was already well established with the meaning 'baptism' by 1602. An additional meaning indicated by Lisboa is associated with the blessing of rice, as well as certain of the symbols associated with the mass, such as palm fronds and candles.
Once accepted as Christians through baptism, instruction in the Christian faith continued with the catechism, a study of basic religious principles in summary form. The Doctrina Christiana was published in various of the Philippine languages, not for distribution to the general populace, but for use by the missionary priests or the secular clergy who served as intermediaries between the people and the priests. The first Doctrina Christiana was published in Tagalog in 1593. The first Doctrina in Bikol was that of Fr. Andrés de San Agustin published in 1647, followed by that of Fr. Domingo Martínez, a second edition of which was published in 1708.
The Doctrina added to the religious knowledge expected for baptism. To the Pater Noster, the Credo, the Ave Maria and the Ten Commandments were added the Salve Maria, the fourteen articles of Faith, the seven sacraments, the seven capital sins, the fourteen works of mercy, the five commandments of the Church and the act of general confession.
Confession was not readily accepted by the early Filipinos. They would have been reluctant to convey delicate and personal information to someone who might very well use such knowledge against them, and there were particular sacraments which they did not uphold. Divorce and remarriage, for example, were still quite common.
Priests or their representatives often used question booklets called confesionarios which phrased similar questions in different ways in an attempt to get at the truth. These books were also useful for priests who did not have a great deal of fluency in Philippine languages. The confesionario for Bikol was the Tratado de Comunión y de Confesión by P. Fr. San Juan del Spiritu Santo, probably published around the same time as the Doctrina Christiana by Fr. Andrés de San Agustin in 1647.
In modern Bikol the popular term for confession is buybóy, a term which in Lisboa's time referred to abundance of talk.
Daˈí ka pa nagcoconfesar? Haven't you gone to confession yet?
Úmag confesalon To be ready to take confession.
Maráy kon harintók an pagconfesál mo It's better if you confess often.
A similar example may be seen in the full entry for láˈom dealing with hopes and expectations. There is nothing in the older meaning of this word which indicates that it should be associated with confession. It is simply one of the words, most likely chosen by Lisboa, although possibly reflecting the earlier usage by priests, to carry the message of confession.
The modern Bikol word for Holy Communion is the Spanish loan, komunión. Comulgar is the term used in the Doctrina Christiana, but this never was really incorporated into Bikol. Communion as a rite is never referred to by Lisboa and so neither this term nor any alternative ever appears in his example sentences. That there was communion can be seen by the terms referring to communion wafers. Since there was no wheat grown in the Philippines, communion wafers were made from rice flour, búbod. The box for holding communion wafers was called kaˈób and the action of closing the box by fitting the lid over the top, sukád. None of these terms referred exclusively to a box for communion wafers, and none of them have survived into modern Bikol.
kaˈób lid or cover of a chest or communion wafer box; MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to close s/t with a cover or lid; MA‑, I‑ or MAG‑, IPAG‑ to use s/t as a cover or lid for closing s/t; MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to close s/t by bringing two parts together (as in closing a book) [MDL]
sukád a tightly fitting cap, cover or lid (such as that on a container or a cut section of bamboo); MA‑, ‑AN: sukarán or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN: pagsukarán to cap or cover s/t; MA‑, I‑ or MAG‑, IPAG‑ to use s/t as a cap, lid; to place a lid on s/t; MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to encase s/t; to cover one thing with another (such as a box holding communion wafers with its lid); to place one thing inside another; magsuró-sukád to place a number of things, one inside the other (such as links of gold (gáris) on the chains kámagi and hinapón); (fig‑) Daˈí surukád an buˈót kainíng mga táwo These people do not fit well together (indicating disagreement or discord) [MDL]
The concept of wrong, as well as crime and punishment, certainly existed in the early Bikol society. Lisboa has many entries dealing with what appears to be a rather detailed system of justice for crimes against individuals, and a system of punishment including whipping, imprisonment and confinement in the stocks or pillory. It was rather easy to expand the meaning of wrong to that of sin. Much newer were the concepts of avoiding the temptation to sin, including in the concept of sin everyday occurrences such as drunkenness and adultery, and involving a supreme being in the forgiveness of particular sins committed. Also new were the concepts of desecration and the cleansing of the spirit. This was not an unattractive idea to the early Filipinos, and confession of one's sins, particularly in times of illness, served to draw them closer to the church.
The concept of sin is represented by sálaˈ which is the common word for error, fault and guilt. We can see in Lisboa's Vocabulario an attempt to distinguish types of sin, with sálaˈ reserved for sins of the flesh, although generalised to all types of sin in the confessional. Original sin was introduced with reference to the sin of Adam, as can be seen in the entry below.
nonóhoˈ MA‑ to come to pass; MA‑‑AN: manonohóˈan to come to see the evil of one's ways; IKA‑ to see the evil of one's ways; KA‑‑AN: Kanonohóˈan ka lugód May you come to see the evil of your ways [MDL]
Na doy diminaˈí To be absolved of one's sins
línig MA‑ clean; MA‑‑ON immaculate; MAG‑, ‑AN to clean s/t; to purify s/t [+MDL: MA‑ smooth, clean; MA‑, ‑ON or MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON / MAHING‑, HING‑‑ON or MAGHING‑, PAGHING‑‑ON: to smooth s/t out; to clean s/t; Abóng línig kainí How clean this is; Pakalinígon nindó an saindóng buˈót Cleanse your spirit]
sílot MAG‑, ‑AN to punish s/o (as for a sin); to exact retribution from s/o (as after a confession); to make s/o bear the consequences of their actions; to penalize s/o (as after losing a game); PAG‑ consequence, punishment, retribution [+MDL: MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to make s/o bear a particular punishment for a sin or wrongdoing; MA‑, I‑ or MAG‑, IPAG‑ to impose a particular fine or punishment; MA‑, ‑ON or MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to undergo a particular punishment for a sin or crime]
Related to the concept of sin are the concepts of hell and the devil. There was no concept of heaven or hell in early Bikol. As for the devil, Bikolanos had enough of their own frightening creatures to keep them in check and hardly needed another to be added to this pantheon. Nevertheless, while there seems to be an attempt in Lisboa to identify the devil with one of the creatures existing in Bikol mythology, it was really through a Spanish loan that this concept came to be recognised.
The term lángit 'sky', came to be used as well for 'heaven', and it is this term which appears in all prayers and religious references. The abstract idea of heaven as a place of solace and contentment is adapted from the term muráway which embraced these sentiments in an earthly life. These particular uses all still exist in modern Bikol.
muráway MA‑ blissful, contented, peaceful; PAGKA‑ peace, glory; KA‑‑AN peace, glory, bliss, contentment; the heavens; also muráˈway [+MDL: muráˈway MA‑ to be contented, blissful; to be in heaven; MA‑‑AN to comfort, calm; KA‑‑AN heaven]
Ngápit kon magadán kamó, ihuhúlog kamó sa impiérno Then, when you die you will be dropped into hell.
Pagpeniténcia kamó ngániˈ; daˈí kamó ngániˈ mapainfierno You had better do your penance so that you won't go to hell.
The full entry for unglóˈ is presented below. The far more detailed entry, labelled Bikol Mythology [BIK MYT] is from Espinas and must have had a source different from Lisboa.
tambaluslós a small, mythological forest creature said to lead people astray; when it laughs, its lips open to cover its whole face
There are two terms which refer to exorcism, and one to saving one from evil. All three terms are used in modern Bikol. None of these were used in Lisboa's time with these meanings, although it is clear from where these terms originate. Why did these terms become current after Lisboa's time in the Philippines? We can only speculate. Perhaps for a population that was just being converted to Christianity, entry into that religion through baptism was what was required to bring about salvation. The early priests recorded cases where people recovered from illness through baptism (see Section 6.1). Exorcism would have come about later in the Philippines when it was necessary to treat people who were already Christians.
The origin of the first term, basbás, is clearly from one of the rituals performed by the balyán. The full entry is presented below, including that from Espinas shown in the section [BIK MYT].
báwiˈ MAG‑, ‑ON to exorcize s/o; to drive evil spirits out of s/o; MAGPA‑, PA‑‑ON to go to s/o to be exorcized; PARA‑ exorcist, referring to anyone who drives evil spirits out of the body so that the good spirits may return
ágaw MAG‑, ‑ON to deliver s/o (as from evil); MAG‑, ‑AN to deliver s/o from evil; magágaw an buˈót to have one's soul in turmoil [+MDL: MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to cure a person of a disease; MAG‑, IPAG‑ to cure a disease with a particular treatment]
We now come to the concept of a unitary God, and in the sections following this, to Christ, the saints and priests. While concepts central to Christianity, such as a unitary God, were to be kept in the original Spanish there are a number of Philippine languages, both major and minor, in which the term batálaˈ or bathálaˈ was used to mean God due to its possible interpretation as a Supreme Being. The term comes originally from Sanskrit, and while it was probably not far enough removed from other terms for ancestor worship to make its adoption acceptable to the missionary priests, in many regions of the Philippines this was the term applied to the new Christian God. This was not the case in Bikol. Bathálaˈ was clearly a type of aníto, a representation of one's ancestors, and therefore not acceptable. This term has disappeared from modern Bikol, and familiarity with it would most likely be due to a person's familiarity with Tagalog or Cebuano.
An tinutugmarán nin totóˈong pagkaCristiano iní nang gáyod an marigón na pagtubód sa Kagurangnán tang Diós The basis of true Christianity is a strong belief in the Lord our God.
Nakakatanóng an daˈí tibáˈad digdí sa dagáˈ kan paggurumdóm ta sa Diós The transitory things of earth stand in the way of our thoughts of God.
Daˈí mo pasibógon an saímong pagtubód sa Diós, mínsan pagaanhón ka man Do not waver from you belief in God, even though from time to time you may be tested.
Hapáw an pagtubód nindó sa Diós You are remiss in your faith in God. Malúya an pagtubód nindó sa Diós Your belief in God is weak. Tugák na gáyo an buˈót nindó sa Diós Your belief in God is very weak.
tugá MA‑ or MAG‑ to appear suddenly and unexpectedly; MA‑, I‑ or MAG‑, IPAG‑ to present s/t that is unexpected; MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to appear unexpectedly before s/o; to appear suddenly at a particular location; Itinugá sakóˈ nin Diós iníng buláwan God has presented me with this gold; ‑AN tugáhan lucky, fortunate; referring to s/o who always has what they need when they need it [MDL]
If the concept of a unitary God was difficult for early Bikolanos to understand, the concept of a human representative of God in the form of Christ should have been even more so. Lisboa has either used or recorded earlier use of particular grammatical devices in Bikol to try to convey this concept. We have, using the verbal affix mani‑, just such an attempt which must have been successful since it is still used in modern Bikol.
tubós MAG‑, ‑ON to redeem s/t; to ransom s/o; MAG‑, ‑AN to ransom or redeem s/t from s/o; MAG‑, I‑ to pay s/t as a ransom; PARA‑ redeemer, saviour [+MDL: MA‑, ‑ON to recover one's bond or what one has left for surety; to ransom s/o; MA‑, ‑AN to recover one's bond from s/o; to ransom s/o from s/o; MA‑, I‑ to make a particular payment to recover one's bond or surety; to pay a particular ransom; MAG‑ to exchange captives, prisoners; MAG‑, IPAG‑ to exchange one captive for another; MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to ransom one captive with the exchange of another]
An úlay ni Jesucrísto, Kagurángnan ta: An makuyóg ngayá kan túgon ni amáˈ, iyó kon ináˈ, iyó kon túgang iyán ... . Jesus Christ, our Lord, said: Those who honor their father, their mother and their fellow humans .]
Sumálaˈ pa idtóng úlay ni Jesucristo, Kagurangnán ta And the words of Jesus Christ, Our Lord, will come to pass.
tubód MAG‑, ‑ON to believe in or have faith in s/o; to follow s/o's wishes; to heed or obey s/o; to regard s/t (as advice); MAGPA‑, PA‑‑ON to convince or persuade s/o; to win s/o over; MAKAPA‑ credible, cogent, compelling, convincing; DAˈÍ MAKAPA‑ incredible, inconceivable; PA‑ superstition; PAG‑ belief, faith; daˈíng pagtubód doubting, dubious, unbelieving; An Minatubód The Apostle's Creed, a statement of belief in the basic doctrines of Christianity, said to have been composed by the Twelve Apostles, which begins: 'I believe in God the Father Almighty' [+MDL: MA‑, ‑ON or MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to believe in s/t; to have faith in or trust s/o; tutubdón to test s/o's faith in s/t; MANG‑ to have too much faith in s/o; to trust s/o too easily (as in giving credit); PAG‑ belief, faith; trust; an pagtubód an act of faith; Harayóˈ an pagtubód ko saímo I'll never trust you; Tubód mo doy How quickly you trust s/o; How easily you are taken in; ‑AN / ‑ON + ‑NON: turubdánon or turubdónon trusted, well-respected; one who is obeyed due to fear, respect or the ability to help others]
Along with a belief in Christ we also have the concept of death and resurrection which did not exist in early Bikol society. Also introduced into the death ritual was the priest, perhaps in an attempt to usurp the traditional position of the balyán, and the more Christian concepts of the human body returning to the dust from which it came, as well as the liberation of the soul.
The concept of resurrection was exemplified using words for 'again' liwát, in both old and modern Bikol and ótro in modern Bikol alone, or words for 'return' balík or ulíˈ. Examples are found associated with a number of headword entries.
táwo man or woman; an individual, a person, human being; people; a creature (human); an mga táwo mankind, humanity, folk; the populace, population; MA‑ crowded; heavily populated, populous; sadíring táwo immediate family; MAGMA‑, MA‑‑ON to sustain s/o's life; to not be involved in the killing of s/o; garó táwo man-like, humanoid; pagkanitáwo manhood, humankind; ótrong pagkanitáwo reincarnation, resurrection; ‑AN a tenant; (sl‑) bodyguard; tumatáwo a caretaker; táwong alpóg (lit‑) men of this world (lit: men of dust); táwong lipód a general term for invisible mythological creatures including giants and elves [+MDL: duwá katáwo two people; MA‑, ‑ON or MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to spare the life of s/o or s/t; MAKA‑ to be able to sustain life: Túbig lámang nakakatáwo sakó' Only water is keeping me alive; (fig‑) daˈí nakakatáwo nin kaláyo to be unable to light a fire; MA‑ to be alive; to live, germinate; to light (a fire): Natáwo na si tinanóm ko My plants have germinated; natáwo nagbalík to be resurrected; to live again; IKA‑ to sustain life (as food); (fig‑) ikatáwo fresh, vibrant; MA‑‑AN to be carrying a child, off-spring; PAGKA‑ humanity; the ability to revive, grow s/t; MAMA‑, MA‑‑ON or MAGMA‑, PAGMA‑‑ON to sustain the life of s/o or s/t; to not kill an animal; MAMA‑, IMA‑ or MAGMA‑, IPAGMA‑ to give food as sustenance to keep s/o or s/t alive; an pagkatáwo liwát resurrection; An pagkatáwo liwát nin mga táwo gabós The resurrection of all of us]
mundág born; mundág na gadán stillborn; MAG‑, I‑ to give birth to a child; MA‑ to be born; MA‑‑AN to be born in a particular place; dagáng namundágan birthplace, homeland; PAGKA‑ birth; pagkamundág ulíˈ or liwát na pagkamundág reincarnation, rebirth, resurrection [+MDL]
dagáˈ soil, earth; ground, land, terrain; property, premises; puéde sa túbig, puéde sa dagáˈ amphibious; MAG‑, ‑AN to cover s/t with soil; MAG‑, I‑ to dig up soil; MAGPA‑, PA‑‑AN to fill s/t in with earth; NASA ashore; dagáng namundagán homeland; dagáng panugáˈ promised land [+MDL: MA‑, I‑ or MAG‑, IPAG‑ to throw soil on s/t; MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to cover s/t with soil; MANG‑ or MANI‑ to return to the soil; to become dust; ‑ON: dinagáˈ a dirt road; ‑IMIN‑ to fall to the ground: Diminagáˈ na iníng guayauas Many guavas have fallen to the ground; Garó na ing dagáˈ iníng uuránon This cloud is like the earth (Said when there is a dark cloud in the sky); sangdagáˈ very numerous (numerous as the grains of soil)]
utás MAG‑, ‑ON to detach, remove or separate s/t; MAG‑, ‑AN to detach or separate s/t from s/t else; MAKA‑, MA‑ to come off; to become detached; MAKA‑, MA‑‑AN to come off from s/t; to become detached or come off from s/t [+MDL: MA‑, ‑ON or MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to cut s/t completely off; MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to cut s/t completely off from where it is attached; MA‑ to come completely apart; to become completely detached; to separate from one's body (the soul); to end (one's life); MA‑‑AN to die (to be separated from one's life): Nautsán na She's dead; PAGKA‑: an pagkautsí way of dying]
While this chapter does not go into detail regarding the death rituals found in Lisboa's Vocabulario, the few entries below should give the reader some idea of the differences between pre-Christian funerals, and the burials introduced by the priests.
kálang a small hut or shelter in which the caskets of influential people of a town are placed; MA‑, ‑ON or MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to place the dead in a such a hut or shelter; MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN / MA‑, I‑ or MAG‑, IPAG‑ to use a hut or shelter for such a purpose [MDL]
háyaˈ (arc‑) MA‑, ‑ON or MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to place the bodies of the dead in a seated position near one another, as if they were still alive, so that they may be viewed or eulogized; ‑AN: hahayáˈan a place where such viewing or eulogising takes place; (fig‑) Anó taˈ pinaghahayáˈ iní digdí ho? Why is this left where everyone can see it? (Said in annoyance about s/t that should have been put away) [MDL]
hátang MAPA‑, PA‑‑ON to arrange the body of the dead, laying it out in the middle of a room; MAPA‑, PA‑‑AN to lay out the dead in the middle of a room [MDL]
badyóˈ cloth (typ‑ woven with colors and figures, used only for covering the bodies of the dead) [MDL]
babayógan bier for carrying the dead; see bayóg [MDL]
rúkat thud, thump; the sound of s/t falling from high up; also the sound of the toll for the dead which is rung on Good Friday to mark the hour of Christ's death; MA‑ or MAG‑ to make this sound; MA‑, ‑ON or MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to sound the toll for the dead; Nagrúkat na What a thud [MDL]
The modern word for 'bible' is the Spanish loan biblía. The word for 'testament', as in the New Testament and Old Testament, is típan. Lisboa does not make use of the word biblía in his Vocabulario, nor is típan used in a religious sense.
Paaˈanóng maghúlit kaiyán na naniráw-niráw na lámang an táwo sa simbáhan How can one give a sermon to the handful of people remaining in church?
Gíkan sa Diós iníng húlit This teaching comes from God. Rimposá nindó iníng hulit sa buˈót nindó Keep these teachings close to your heart. Tungkosá nindó sa buˈót an húlit nin Diós Remember God's teachings.
Taˈ daw taˈ daˈí tinatadmán nin húlit an saímong buˈót? Why is it that the teachings have no effect on you?
Daí máyoˈ akó nakakasapód kainíng ipinaghuhúlit sakóˈ I don't quite understand what is being taught to me.
The common word for prayer was and is adyíˈ. This is a loanword from Malay, coming originally from Arabic, and it was an acceptable term for use in a Christian context since it possibly had few if any connotations with the traditional religious life of the early Bikolanos. The variant affixation possibilities may indicate that there was some uncertainty in adapting this term to the Bikol sound system. Lisboa gave adyíˈ a very specific reference to Christian doctrine, as can be seen in the entry which follows.
súnoˈ MA‑, ‑ON or MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to repeat exactly s/t one has heard to another (as a prayer one has memorized); to follow, stepping in the footsteps of the one walking in front) [MDL]
laktás MA‑ describing s/t which contains many omissions; MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to miss, omit, skip over, leave s/t out (as when reciting prayers when one omits a number of verses)
kimót-kimót MA‑, ‑ON or MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to move the lips (as when reading to o/s or saying one's prayers) [MDL]
áhom expression of affirmation spoken by the congregation to the balyán as she recites her prayers; MA‑ or MAG‑ to utter this expression; MA‑, ‑ON or MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to assent to s/t; to express acceptance of s/t with such an expression; MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑AN to respond to the balyán in such a way MDL ]
kapót MAG‑, ‑AN: kapotán or kaptán to hold s/t in the hand; MANG‑, PANG‑‑AN to clasp, clutch, grasp or grip s/t; to cling to s/t; to latch on to s/t; to get a hold of s/t; ‑AN: kakaptán handle [+MDL: MA‑, ‑ON or MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to hold s/t in the hands; Kaptí mo na iníng Breviario Hold this breviary; Garó na ing daˈí kinaptán It looks as if this is untouched (Said when s/t is very clean, such as s/t one has sewn)]
brebiário breviary, a book containing the hymns, offices, and prayers for the canonical hours (special prayers recited at specified times during the day) [SP‑ breviario]
Related to prayer are expressions of homage, praise and supplication. Included in this section are those expressions in which certain requests are made of God.
There are some interesting comparisons to be made between the present and the past. Lisboa had already selected quite a number of words and extended their meaning to include the above ideas. Modern Bikol, however, has gone further and it is interesting to see the origin of these later adaptations.
The central meaning of the first example, miˈbíˈ, was 'to implore' or 'to entreat'. We have this term given a religious meaning in Lisboa which is still used in modern Bikol.
agagháˈ (lit‑) wail; supplication; MAG‑ to wail; to beseech, implore; MAG‑, ‑AN to wail over s/o; to ask for s/t in supplication [+MDL: agaghá MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to wail over s/t; to lament s/t]
aráng MAG‑, ‑ON to pray to s/o; MAG‑, I‑ to pray for s/t; to aspire to or hope for s/t; PAG‑ hope [MDL: MA‑, ‑ON or MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to ask for help, assistance or aid from s/o; to implore s/o]
károy benefit or gain which one hopes to achieve by carrying out particular actions; a return on an investment of time, prayer (such as when s/o goes to church to pray for a reward or remuneration they hope to receive); MA‑, ‑ON or MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to do s/t so that a later benefit or return will be realized; to consider how s/t can be used to further one's aims: Anóng károy mo kaiyán? What do you hope to gain by that?; Anóng kinakároy mo sakúyaˈ na urípon? What do you hope to get from me, a slave? [MDL]
sambá MAG‑, ‑ON to venerate or worship s/t; to adore s/o (religious context); ‑AN place of worship [+MDL: MA‑, ‑ON or MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to adore or worship s/o or s/t]
rukyáw homage, praise, tribute; MAG‑, ‑ON to praise or pay homage to s/o; to extol s/o [MDL: cry of victory; MA‑ or MAG‑ to shout in victory; MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to shout in victory over those who have been defeated (the victor)]
árak MA‑, ‑ON or MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to praise or admire s/t (for its beauty, excellent quality or large quantity); to marvel at s/t; to be in awe of s/t; MA‑, I‑ or MAG‑, IPAG‑ to say s/t in praise of s/t or s/o; MAKI‑‑ON describing one who marvels at or is in awe of s/t; awestruck; ‑IMIN‑ to be in praise of s/t; Daˈí máyong daˈí iminárak There is nothing that person doesn't admire; MAHING‑‑AN to be carried away or be overcome in praise of s/t; MAKAHING‑ to be worthy of high praise or admiration; IKAHING‑ to be praised to the highest or to the extreme; Súkat ta ikahihingárak an pagkakurí nin Diós We should extol the greatness of the Lord [MDL]
úgay (lit‑) compassion; grace; MA‑ compassionate; full of grace [+MDL: MA‑ or MA‑‑ON compassionate; pious, godly; PAGKA‑ compassion; piety, godliness; KA‑ friend, servant; úgay ko what a pity, how sad; an expression of sympathy or compassion: Úgay ko iká Poor you; Úgay ko siyá Poor her; MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to be distressed about s/t; to feel pain or compassion for s/o (as s/o affected by a death); MA‑, I‑ or MAG‑, IPAG‑ to voice an expression of sympathy or compassion out loud]
máyoˈ there is not; without, devoid of; to not have or possess; naught, nil, no, none: Máyong lápis diyán There is no pencil there; Máyoˈ siyáng probléma He doesn't have a problem; [+MDL: always used with daˈí: Daˈí máyoˈ Nothing to confess, nothing to repent for; Daˈí máyong táwo No one is here; Daˈí na máyoˈ There is no more; MAKI‑: makimáyoˈ to ask for pity, compassion]
wáras grace, pity (used in prayers); MAG‑, ‑AN to shower s/o with grace or pity [+MDL: MA‑, ‑AN to divide s/t; to give s/o a share of s/t; MA‑, I‑ to allot or give s/t as a share; MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to divide s/t in two; MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to share s/t among yourselves; KA‑ s/t which is divided and shared]
sukól MAG‑ to bow the head; MAG‑, ‑ON to bow the head in prayer, homage; MAG‑, ‑AN to bow the head to s/o [+MDL: MA‑ or MAG‑ to bow the head, as when reciting the Gloria Patri 'Glory to the Father'; MA‑, ‑ON or MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to bow the head in homage or prayer; MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to bow the head to s/o]
The ancestor worship in practice when the Spanish arrived in the Philippines had to be eliminated for the new religion to gain dominance. Also to be eliminated were all associations with such worship, including the female religious leaders, the balyán. With the introduction of Christianity, we have the introduction of a series of saints with their images, which must have in some ways reminded Bikolanos of the worship of their ancestors in the form of an aníto. We have a number of references to the saints and sainthood in example sentences.
kon si San Páblo as said by Saint Paul.
Pintakasíhon mo si Sánta María Ask Saint Mary to intercede on your behalf.
sayóng MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to dress s/o up in their finest; to adorn a person, image or effigy; MA‑, I‑ or MAG‑, IPAG‑ to adorn s/o with fine clothes or jewelry [MDL]
tangbáy MAG‑ to do s/t together; to arrive at the same time; to be born on the same day; MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to make a matching pair; MA‑, I‑ or MAG‑, IPAG‑ to make one thing match another; MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to match one thing with another; Katangbáy ko si Juán Juan is the same age as me or Juan arrived at the same time as me; (fig‑) Tangbáy an buˈót kainíng ákiˈ or Tinatangbayán nin buˈót iníng ákiˈ This child has always shown common sense; tangbáy na úlay a basic tenet (an opinion which one has always held) [MDL]
Sa pádeng úlay The priest's words.
Along with the introduction of a new religion came the introduction of new religious celebrations. Many of these were associated with Easter and its spectacle of crucifixion and flagellation, although there is some reference as well to other celebrations which are discussed in this section.
Specific reference to Christian teachings, observances and practices came with publication of the Doctrina Christiana in Bikol by San Agustin and Martínez after Lisboa's departure from the region. These Doctrina were translations of the standard Belarmino version and used Spanish for all of significant religious references so that these new concepts would not be tainted by those of an earlier religion. The Spanish references to religious observations which are not in Lisboa's Vocabulario but are part of modern Bikol, come from citations in the Doctrina. Not all of these references, however, did become part of Bikol. Many remain strictly ecclesiastical with little use outside of the religious community. The focus in this chapter is primarily words for religious concepts which appear first in the Lisboa Vocabulario.
On a general level, we have the concept of church offerings which comes originally from the serving of food by laying it out on a table. The adaptation in Lisboa is still used in modern Bikol, although more generally to cover the concept of donation.
abstinénsia abstinence; MAG‑ to abstain; MAG‑, ‑AN to abstain from (usually from eating meat) [SP‑ abstinencia]
For reference to Lent, we only have the Spanish loan introduced by Lisboa in one of the example sentences in his Vocabulario, Cuaresma, and this remains the term in modern Bikol as well.
Kuarésma Lent, the forty days preceding Easter, beginning on Ash Wednesday, seen as a time of penitence [SP‑ Cuaresma]
kurús MAG‑, ‑AN to draw a cross on s/t; MANG‑ or MAGPANG‑ to cross oneself; to make the sign of the cross; PANG‑: Pangúrus Ash Wednesday [SP‑ cruz]
busóg MA‑ I‑ or MAG‑, IPAG‑ to pour water or another liquid from one container into another; MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to fill one container with water poured from another; used on Holy Thursday as part of the Maundy Thursday Mass [MDL]
líbod MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to walk around town (as when in procession or when following behind and flagellating s/o); MA‑, I‑ or MAG‑, IPAG‑ to walk through the streets with s/o (as one you are flagellating) [MDL]
lísag the sound of whipping or lashing; MA‑, ‑ON or MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to make this sound when whipping s/o (as during tenebrae, the last three days of Holy Week); (PAG‑)‑AN to emanate from a particular place (such a sound); (fig‑) Múda pa iníng pinaglísag na kitá panlapdosá What a sound of whipping when we lash one another [MDL]
tunók a thorn, barb, prickle; MA‑ thorny, prickly, barbed; MAG‑, ‑ON to stick s/o with a thorn; MAG‑, ‑AN to stick a thorn in a particular part of the body; MAKA‑, MA‑ to get stuck with a thorn (a person); MAKA‑, MA‑‑AN to get stuck with a thorn (a particular part of the body) [+MDL: MA‑, ‑ON or MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to place thorns or barbs on a whip; KA‑‑AN: katunokán or katungkán an area of thorns; the wound caused when one is stuck by a thorn]
mahál a loved one; dear; mahál kong my dear (used as a heading in a letter); MAG‑, ‑ON to adore, cherish, love or revere s/o; MAKAPA‑, MAPA‑ to endear o/s; KA‑‑AN adoration, love, reverence; majesty; An Saindóng Kamahálan Your Highness, Your Majesty; Aldáw nin Kamahálan Easter [MDL: loved, cherished; MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to esteem or cherish s/o; Mahál na gáyo Wonderful]
babalóˈ sound of a rooster crowing; MAG‑ to crow [+MDL: used in the Gospels when recited in the Pasión; in common use is tukturáˈok]
Pasión Passion, a chanted hymn narrating the life of Christ from the Last Supper up to and including the Crucifixion, usually sung during Easter week with sections commonly acted out by the community; MAG‑ to sing or chant the Passion [SP‑]
tanggál MAG‑, ‑ON to detach or disconnect s/t; to pull s/t out (as a plug from the wall, a nail from a board); MAKA‑, MA‑ to come off or come out; to become detached; PAG‑: an pagtanggál the ceremony of removing Jesus Christ from the cross, celebrated on Good Friday; also the second part of the Pasión depicting the crucifixion [+MDL: MA‑, ‑ON or MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to pull s/t out; to detach s/t; MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to pull s/t out or detach s/t from somewhere]
húlid MAG‑, I‑ to lie s/o down to sleep (as a child); MAG‑, ‑ON to lie down beside s/o; An Hinúlid image of the dead Christ [MDL: MA‑, ‑ON or MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to lay a child in one's lap, in a cradle; MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to lay a child down on s/t or in s/t, such as a cradle]
Pinauswág iníng fiesta The fiesta was postponed.
piésta fiesta, feast, festival; holiday; a festival or holiday celebrated in honor of a particular saint; MANG‑, MAKI‑ or MAKIPANG‑ to attend a fiesta; KA‑‑AN fiesta day; Piésta de Presépto Day of Obligation (religious) [SP‑ fiesta]
sukób (arc‑) an ancient ritual or ceremony in which a pig is killed, and after being cut up and cooked, is distributed in a large bowl to be eaten by those present; MA‑, ‑ON or MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to divide up and distribute a pig in this way [MDL]
bágit a pig, fattened from the time a child is born into the owner's family, and then killed when the child is grown; the butchered pig is then eaten at a feast called karinga; MA‑ or MAG‑ to grow and mature (this type of pig); MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to celebrate the growth of a child with the slaughter of this type of pig [MDL]
gámit (arc‑) ceremonial feast in honor of the aníto; MA‑ or MAG‑ to organize such a feast; MA‑, ‑ON or MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to serve particular foods at such a feast; MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to hold such a feast for a child; MA‑, I‑ or MAG‑, IPAG‑ to hold such a feast for a particular reason [MDL]
húmay MAG‑, ‑ON to prepare a dish eaten on festive occasions in which seasoned fish or meat and rice are placed into segments of bamboo, left to age and then cooked; ‑ON: hinúmay the dish prepared in this way [+MDL: MA‑, ‑ON or MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to prepare hinuhúmay; MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to fill segments of bamboo with the ingredients for this dish; ‑ON: hinuhúmay the dish prepared in this wa
kalág soul, spirit; apparition, ghost, spectre; MAG‑, ‑ON to haunt s/o; MAKA‑, MA‑ or MAKA‑, MA‑‑AN to be haunted; MANG‑, PANG‑‑ON to go around for 'trick or treat'; to take things on Halloween; máyong kalág inconsiderate; Piésta nin mga Kalág Halloween; Paggirumdóm sa mga Kalág All Souls' Day; a day of prayer on November 2nd for the souls of those in Purgatory [MDL: the spirit or soul which gives us life]
sápak a grouping of a large number or great variety of different, species, such as the animals on Noah's ark, gold of different carats or qualities, people from different towns or regions; MA‑‑AN to be gathered in a particular place (a great variety or number of people, animals, things); Sápak an mga táwo sa Manila There are many different types of people in Manila; Sápak iníng buláwan, iyó kagugutáng This gold is of very many different types, and because of that will split if worked [MDL]
ánab MA‑ usurper, describing s/o who always wants more of s/t: maánab-ánab na táwo a usurper; one who wants to take everything; MA‑, ‑ON or MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to usurp s/t; to take all of s/t for o/s; to always want more of s/t; MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to usurp or take s/t from s/o; (fig‑) Naánab ka pa namán sa ibáng babáyi You have a wife, and yet you still go with other women [MDL]
ángag MAG‑ or MAGKA‑ to argue or quarrel over a woman (two men, both of whom have a relationship with her); MAGKA‑, PAGKA‑‑AN to quarrel over a particular woman [MDL]
dakóp MAG‑, ‑ON to apprehend, catch or capture s/o; to collar s/o; to arrest or take s/o into custody; MAKA‑, MA‑ to get caught [+MDL: MA‑, ‑ON or MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to seize or grasp s/t; to capture s/o; MA‑, ‑AN: dakpán or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN: pagdakpán to seize s/t from s/o; to capture s/o from a particular place or remove him from a particular family; MAKA‑, MA‑ to be able to capture s/o; to catch another man with your wife; MAKA‑, MA‑‑AN to catch one's wife with another man]
darayhát inconsistent, changeable; MA‑ or MAG‑ to be inconsistent; MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to be inconsistent or changeable with regard to things, first liking one thing, then another; (PAG‑)‑AN to be unable to make up one's mind regarding a choice between various items: Dinadarayhatán ka kainíng dakól na babakalón You are overwhelmed by all the things that are available for sale, and you can't make up your mind; ‑ON one who is inconsistent, uncertain; also: a woman with many lovers [MDL]
ayáw MAG‑ to divorce one another; MAG‑, IPAG‑ or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to get divorced for a particular reason; MAKI‑, PAKI(PAG)‑‑AN to divorce s/o [MDL]
Going to church and the celebration of the mass were often equated. The most general term for this was and is símba. While we might assume that a very early meaning of símba, no longer extant when Lisboa was writing his Vocabulario, was 'to pray to one's ancestors', and an early meaning of the locative form, simbáhan, the location of such prayers, there is no record of this for Bikol. These are, however, the early meanings attributed to such a term for Tagalog.
Masimbá pa akó I'll still go to church or I've yet to go to church.
Magsimbá kitá Let's go to church.
Taˈ daw taˈ daˈí ka siminimbá? - Taˈ daw taˈ? Why aren't you going to mass? – Why, is it now?
Taˈ daw taˈ daˈí ka simimbá - Daˈí rugáring How come you didn't go to church? – It wasn't possible.
Dihán simimbá si kuyán, dihán daˈí Sometimes that person goes to church, sometimes not.
Daˈí nang gayód kitá makakasimbá an naghihílang It is improbable that we who are sick will be able to go to church.
Taˈwí akóng gúhit. Darahón ko sa Pádre mi. Giˈána daˈí akó siminimbá Give me a letter. I'll take it to our priest. He'll think I haven't been going to church.
Sa lúbaˈ ko iníng pagsimbá nindó pírit lámang, ngáning sabáliˈ Except for some of you, I think your going to church is because you are forced to.
Ngutumpáng hinampák ka taˈ daˈí ka palán siminimbá The reason why you were whipped was because you don't go to church.
Nagmimísa pa (He's) still saying mass.
Nagmimísa pa saná (He's) just started saying mass.
Daˈí ko nakíta idtóng Pádre na nagmimísa / naghuhúlit I didn't see the Priest who was saying mass / preaching.
Taˈón-taˈonón ko na rugáring an Mísa I'm just in time for the mass.
túˈon MAG‑, I‑ to lift or raise s/t up; to elevate s/t; to boost s/t [+MDL: MA‑, I‑ or MAG‑, IPAG‑ to raise or lift s/t up, and then lower it again (as the Host during mass); to hand s/t to one who is above you; MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to hand or give s/t to s/o]
dagáw MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to respond in verse to one who is singing [MDL]
hál-lia a ritual held on the nights of the full moon in honor of the gugúrang; bamboo or hollowed tree trunks are beaten to scare away the bakunáwa who would otherwise swallow the moon [BIK MYT] [MDL: a pastime of women who chant responsively on the nights of the full moon, one group saying hál-lia, and the other responding in the same way]
uhúya a way of singing in which the refrain uhuya is repeated many times; MAG‑ to sing in such a way; MA‑, ‑ON or MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to sing s/t in such a way; to lull a child to sleep by such singing; MA‑, I‑ or MAG‑, IPAG‑ to use the voice in such a way [MDL]
ambáhan song (typ‑ sung as a lullaby, during times of leisure or when rowing); MA‑ or MAG‑ to sing an ambáhan; MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to sing an ambáhan to s/o [MDL]
hílaˈ a work song sung when pulling or hauling s/t, or when rowing; MA‑, ‑ON or MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to pull or haul s/t, or row while singing [MDL]
huló song (typ‑ sung when rowing, or when pulling or hauling s/t); MA‑ or MAG‑ to sing this type of song [MDL]
humúlo song (typ‑ sung when setting out to sea or when hauling s/t heavy); MA‑ or MAG‑ to sing in this way; MA‑, I‑ or MAG‑, IPAG‑ to sing a particular song when working in this way [MDL]
dániw MA‑, ‑ON or MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to sing verses, as when drinking, not raising the voice; MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to sing verses in this way to s/o [MDL]
gúyaˈ MA‑, ‑ON or MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to sing couplets; to sing a ballad; MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to sing couplets or ballads to s/o [MDL]
It was the intention of the Spanish friars to make the church the centre of village life in the areas of the Philippines converted to Christianity. The resettlement of the early populace into larger communities within earshot of the church bells was referred to as the Reduction. We can see by the substantial number of example sentences in Lisboa referring to the construction of churches that this must have been given some priority. The following is just one example.
palangóˈ plant (typ‑ growing in the forest, very fragrant; used in decorating churches); MANG‑ to collect this plant [MDL]
daragángan shrub (typ‑ with stiff leaves used to decorate churches) [MDL]
hágol palm tree (typ‑ found in the mountains, producing a wood good for use in making ducts or guttering, and flooring for houses) [+MDL: the fronds are used to decorate churches during fiestas]
ungkárip fruiting stem of the betel palm (búnga); the bunches of flowers hanging from this stem are commonly hung in churches during fiesta [MDL]
sagipíˈ a type of trinket or decoration made from palm leaves woven together into a lattice-like square; used in decorating churches; MAG‑, to weave such lattice-like squares [MDL]
sagaksák MAG‑, ‑ON to cut the leaves of palm fronds (to be scattered about in church); MAG‑, ‑AN to cut the leaves from palm fronds [MDL]
gisíˈ a tear; torn; MAG‑, ‑ON to tear, rip; MAG‑, ‑AN to rip or tear from MAKA‑, MA‑ to get torn, ripped [+MDL: MAG‑ to be torn in two; MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to tear in two (many things, such as palm fronds to decorate the church)]
tapútap MA‑, I‑ or MAG‑, IPAG‑ to scatter s/t with the hand (as when scattering flowers or palm fronds in church); MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to scatter s/t over a particular area [MDL]
wákay MA‑, ‑ON or MAG‑, PAG‑‑ON to scatter or spread s/t; MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to scatter or spread s/t over a particular area; MAKA‑ to be scattered, spread: Wákay na iyán búrak dihán sa simbáhan The flowers are scattered at the church [MDL]
As for the contents of a church, and the various implements associated with Christianity, a number of terms were introduced and others were adapted from Bikol words with essentially different meanings.
For altar the Spanish term was used. Any native term (see Section 5) would have had too close an association with worship of the aníto. For the canopy of the altar, Lisboa uses the same word as for 'the white of an egg'. The image is probably that of the cooked white of an egg cut in half.
Sa man altár near the altar
langít-lángit white of an egg; canopy of a bed or altar [MDL]
bugták embroidery (typ‑ sewn along the edges and in the middle of a piece of cloth), similar to that found on cloth used to cover the chalice during religious services; sometimes used as a head covering (pudóng); MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to embroider such cloth; MA‑, I‑ or MAG‑, IPAG‑ to embroider cloth with a particular thread; ‑AN: bugtakán cloth with such embroidery [MDL]
tiláng clam (typ‑ saltwater; the shell is used in some areas for holding holy water in the church) [MDL]
wirík MAG‑ to shake dry (as a dog); MAG‑, I‑ to sprinkle water; MAG‑, ‑AN to sprinkle water on s/t [MDL: MA‑, I‑ or MAG‑, IPAG‑ to sprinkle water with the hand or an aspergill (a container for holy water); MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to sprinkle s/t with water]
láhid MAG‑, I‑ to spread s/t (as butter on bread); to coat with s/t; to anoint with s/t; MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to spread s/t on s/t else, to coat s/t; to cover s/t with a thin layer; to anoint; to rub s/o with oil, ointment; ‑AN: an linahídan the anointed ones [+MDL: MA‑, ‑AN or MAG‑, PAG‑‑AN to rub s/o with oil, balm, an ointment]
The dominant religion in the Bikol region, as it was in most of the Philippines and Southeast Asia outside the influence of Islam, was animist. Bikolanos worshiped their ancestors and carved statues to represent those they wished to venerate. Their religious leaders were women, and these women retained their power through the ability to heal the sick, comfort the dying, and ensure the survival of the young. The arrival of the Spanish and with them priests and Christianity was to challenge this established order. The priests brought with them another set of beliefs which was to prove more enduring and powerful.
The spread of Christianity was forceful and relentless. Eventually the lure of the Church and the benefits it provided, propelled by coercion and the destruction of the visual images of animist worship, allowed Christianity to dominate and spread throughout the region. There were still places to run to if one wanted to avoid the Church and the rule of the Spanish, but these places became more distant and increasingly more isolated from the changing mainstream of society. Those who fled would eventually return to the towns and the inevitable domination of the Church.
This chapter has examined some of the early linguistic changes which took place in the Bikol language to accommodate the introduction of Christianity. Many of these changes involved extending the meaning of an existing word to accommodate a Christian message. Other changes involved the introduction of Spanish loan words to represent new religious concepts.
Change did not begin nor end with Lisboa. Lisboa undoubtedly recorded usage which was introduced by the Franciscan priests who came before him. He must have also extended the meaning of words to serve as a model for priests who were to come after him. Change also continued long after Lisboa. Modern Bikol has both added and adapted words, as well as left words to fall into disuse and eventually disappear.
In some cases the original meaning of words was completely replaced. Bunyág 'baptism', for example, once meant 'to sprinkle with water', a meaning which ceased to exist. Símba, which probably meant 'to pray to one's ancestors', came to mean exclusively, 'to go to church'.
In other cases words underwent only minor change with the addition of small nuances of meaning. To sálaˈ 'fault', 'error', was added the concept of 'sin', and to titles of address, such as kagurangnán 'Mr', 'Mrs' we get the addition of 'the Lord' when used to address God.
We also get new meanings added to words which exist along with traditional meanings. Báwiˈ, for example, still means 'to take back what is given' in addition to its new meaning, 'to exorcise'. Tanggál 'to detach' or 'to remove', now carries the additional meaning 'the removal of Christ from the cross' in the nominal form of an pagtanggál.
Loan words were added to introduce new concepts which did not exist in early Bikol society. 'Hell' and the 'devil' were introduced with Christianity along with the Spanish loan words, impiérno and demónio. For 'confession', kumpisál was introduced, and for saints and priests, sánto and pádiˈ.
Loan words were also introduced to replace native words which were considered to be too closely associated with early religious practices. For 'altar', for example, we get altár and not the native salángat associated with worship of the aníto, and for 'God' we get Diós and not bathálaˈ which was also tainted by its association with ancestor worship.
Not all of the new religious vocabulary was successfully integrated into Bikol. There are numerous examples where an attempt to adapt traditional vocabulary to the new religion was unsuccessful. Páraˈ 'to erase', for example, was given the additional meaning 'to forgive one for their sins', and károy, related to a particular benefit or gain one would receive from one's deeds, was associated with prayer. Neither of these survive in modern Bikol.
In like manner, not all of the Spanish loan words were accepted into Bikol in spite of their clear dominance in a religious context. The Doctrina Christiana of 1708 is filled with Spanish loan words for Christian concepts such as baptismo 'baptism', comulgar 'communion' and Pasco 'Easter' which were never to become part of the Bikol language.
In many areas of Spanish colonisation, Spanish became the principal language of communication. Local languages were gradually overwhelmed, losing speakers and dominance. This was not the case in the Philippines where Spanish was primarily the language of government and spoken by the upper classes of society. At no time did Spanish speakers number more than 10 percent of the population. As a result it was the local Philippine languages that had to adapt to carry the message of a new regime and a new religion. This chapter has examined some of the changes in Bikol. Other Philippine languages would have come under similar pressures and undergone similar changes.
 This chapter was first published as 'Terms of religious adaptation: the introduction of Christianity to the Bikol Region of the Philippines,' in Current Issues in Philippine Linguistics and Anthropology: Parangal kay Lawrence A. Reid, ed. Hsiu-chuan Liao and Carl R. Galvez Rubino, Manila: The Linguistic Society of the Philippines and SIL Philippines, 2005, pp. 167-210.
 Danilo Madrid Gerona, From Epic to History: A Brief Introduction to Bicol History, Naga City, Philippines: Ateneo de Naga, 1988, p. 38.
 John Leddy Phelan, The Hispanization of the Philippines: Spanish Aims and Filipino Responses, 1565-1700, 1959, Filipiniana Reprint Series, Manila: Cacho Hermanos, 1985, p. 6.
 Colección de documentos inéditos relativos al descubrimiento, conquista y organización de las antiguas posesiones españolas de ultramar, 42 vols. Madrid: La Real Academia de la Historia, 1864-1884, as cited in Gerona, From Epic to History, p. 49.
 Gerona, From Epic to History, p. 49; also Entrada de la Seraphica Religión de Nuestro Padre San Francisco de las Islas Philipinas, An anonymous manuscript of 1649 held at the Biblioteca Nacional, Madrid, MSS No. 505, 1895, pp. 10-13; Phelan, The Hispanization of the Philippines, p. 46; Domingo de Salazar O. P., Relación del las Islas Filipinas, 1588, in Emma Helen Blair and James Alexander Robertson, The Philippine Islands, 1493-1898, 55 vols. Cleveland: AH Clark, 1903-1909, CD-ROM version, Bank of the Philippine Islands, vol. 7, pp. 40-42; and 'Letters from Francisco Tello to Felipe II,' 1598, in Blair and Robertson, vol. 10, pp. 181, 273.
 Phelan, The Hispanization of the Philippines, p. 10.
 Martin de Rada, 'Opinion of Martin de Rada Regarding the Tributes,' 1574, in Christianization of the Philippines, Bulletin VI: Historical Conservation Society, Manila: Historical Conservation Society and The University of San Agustin, 1965, pp. 347-349.
 Gerona, From Epic to History, p. 60; also Miguel de Loarca, Relación de las Islas Filipinas, 1582, Chapter 4, in Blair and Robertson, vol. 5, pp. 93-101.
 Marcos de Lisboa, Vocabulario de la lengua Bicol, Convento de Nuestra Señora de Loreto, Pueblo de Sampaloc, 1754; reprinted in 1865, Manila: Establecimiento Tipografico del Colegio de Santo Tomas.
 Robert Ricard, La 'conquette spirituelle' du Mexique, Paris: Institute d'ethnologie, 1933, pp. 72-75, as cited in Phelan, The Hispanization of the Philippines, p. 185.
 Fr. Andrés de San Agustin, Explicación de la Doctrina Christiana en idioma Bicol, Manila, 1647.
 Pedro Chirino S. J., Relación de las Islas Filipinas, 1604, Manila: Historical Conservation Society, 1969, Chapter 21.
 also see Chirino, Relación de las Islas Filipinas, Chapters 21-22.
 Chirino, Relación de las Islas Filipinas, Chapter 21.
 Merito B. Espinas, 'The supernatural world of the ancient Bikols,' in Unitas, vol. 41, no. 2, 1968, pp. 181-191, p. 186.
 Espinas, 'The supernatural world of the ancient Bikols,' pp. 188-189; Juan de Plasencia, Customs of the Tagalogs, 1589, in Blair and Robertson, vol. 7, pp. 173-196, p. 193.
 Chirino, Relación de las Islas Filipinas, Chapter 55; Phelan, The Hispanization of the Philippines, pp. 53-54.
 Phelan, The Hispanization of the Philippines, p. 56.
 For examples see Chirino, Relación de las Islas Filipinas, Chapters 49, 55 and 56.
 Chirino, Relación de las Islas Filipinas, Chapter 20.
 Phelan, The Hispanization of the Philippines, p. 55.
 Plasencia, Customs of the Tagalogs, in Blair and Robertson, vol. 7, p. 180.
 Phelan, The Hispanization of the Philippines, p. 57.
 Phelan, The Hispanization of the Philippines, p. 57.
 Phelan, The Hispanization of the Philippines p. 57; Chirino, Relación, Chapter 30.
 Phelan, The Hispanization of the Philippines, p. 64.
 Entrada de la Seraphica Religión de Nuestro Padre San Francisco de las Islas Philipinas, p. 51.
 Phelan, The Hispanization of the Philippines, p. 69.
 Chirino, Relación de las Islas Filipinas, Chapter 41.
 also see Antonio de Morga, Sucesos de las Islas Filipinas, 1609, Cambridge: The Hakluyt Society - Cambridge University Press, 1971, pp. 278-279.
 Espinas, 'The supernatural world of the ancient Bikols,' p. 185.
 Espinas, 'The supernatural world of the ancient Bikols,' p. 182.
 Espinas, 'The supernatural world of the ancient Bikols,' p. 185.
 Anonymous Eyewitness Account of the Conquest of Luzon, 1572, in Christianization of the Philippines, p. 363; Chirino, Relación de las Islas Filipinas, Chapter 21; Plasencia, Customs of the Tagalogs, in Blair and Robertson, vol. 7, p. 186.
 see Chirino, Relación de las Islas Filipinas, Chapter 33.
 Phelan, The Hispanization of the Philippines, p. 54.
 Phelan, The Hispanization of the Philippines, p. 74.
 Phelan, The Hispanization of the Philippines, p. 74.
 Plasencia, Customs of the Tagalogs, in Blair and Robertson, vol. 7, pp. 186, 190.
 Miguel López de Legazpi, Relación de las Islas Filipinas (1569), in Blair and Robertson, vol. 3, pp. 54-61, p. 61.
 Phelan, The Hispanization of the Philippines, pp. 61-63.
 Phelan, The Hispanization of the Philippines, pp. 77-78.
 Plasencia, Customs of the Tagalogs, in Blair and Robertson, vol. 7, p. 185.
 Phelan, The Hispanization of the Philippines p. 75.
 Phelan, The Hispanization of the Philippines p. 76; also see Chirino, Relación de las Islas Filipinas, Chapter 34.