Philippines Language: Tagalog or Filipino
1. Tagalog is the foundation of Filipino which is the national Philippines language.
2. Although there is not a great distinction between Tagalog and Filipino, there is a difference which reflects the political and social history of the Philippines language.
3. In the 1930’s when the Commonwealth constitution was drawn up, Tagalog was only spoken in Manila and the surrounding provinces.
4. The Constitution called for a national language but did not specify which Philippines language it would be. However, Tagalog became the unofficial national language as it became accepted and understood by the entire population.
5. In the 1970’s President Marcos tried to introduce a new national Philippines language called Pilipino, which was based on Tagalog but replaced words of foreign origin (mainly English and Spanish) with new words. However this did not work as words from English and Spanish origin had become an integral part of the language in the Philippines.
6. Filipino as it is known today entered into the constitution in the 1980’s as the national language. The Filipino language acknowledged and embraced the existence of and preference for many English and Spanish Worlds.
7. Filipino is the Tagalog language plus the words that the Filipino people have adopted from Spanish and English.
8. The Philippines was under Spanish rule from 1571 – 1898, that’s a total of 327 years.
9. On April 21 1898 the United States declared war against Spain and the Spanish fleet guarding the Philippines was defeated by the U.S. Navy on May 1 1898.
10. Although the Spanish – American War ended in December 1898 with a treaty, this did not mean the Philippines would get its independence yet. In fact, Spain sold the Philippines to America for $20 million dollars.
11. After the Spanish-American War ended the Philippine-American War began, a brutal war that ended in 1902. However, America held on to Philippine rule and independence for the Philippines was held off until after WWII.
12. As a result of its colonial history, Filipino culture has been influenced by Spanish and American culture. Despite these influences the original Asian culture of Filipinos has been retained and is clearly seen in their way of life, beliefs and customs.
13. In terms of ethnicity the Filipino population is highly influenced by Christian (mostly Catholic) religions brought by the Spanish, with 91.5% of the Philippine population being Christian Malay, 4% Muslim Malay and 1.5% Chinese.
14. Filipinos have their own national sport called arnis – a martial art form. However American games like basketball, football and boxing are also popular.
15. Family is central to Filipino culture and extended family is included in this. Aunts, uncles, grandparents, cousins, god parents and close friends are all considered to be part of the family.
16. The Philippines is often referred to as the melting pot of Asia and its cuisine reflects this notion. Rice is a staple dish in the Filipino diet, just like in other Asian countries.