What do you love about the Filipino language? Maybe it’s the fact that you can instantly express respect, and not just to elders, through words like “po,” “ho,” and “opo.” Or perhaps it’s how certain Filipino words describe exactly what you feel, yet have no literal translation in English. We’re taking kilig, bongga, kikay, and other Pinoy words included in the Oxford English Dictionary.
If you love the Filipino languages—and there are anywhere from 120 to over 180 spoken across 17 regions—do your part and help preserve them for future generations. The easiest way: Use them as often as possible. That means speaking in your native tongue, reading material in your native tongue, and writing in your native tongue. (Read: Use of Filipino, Native Languages Pushed For COVID-19 Announcements)
Another is to contribute to Marayum. The word, which translates to “wise words” in the Asi ethnolinguistic group in Romblon Province, is also the name of a dictionary-making tool and online dictionary for Philippine indigenous languages.
Here are three things to know about Marayum and how you can contribute to saving Philippine languages before they’re forgotten:
Marayum has four dictionaries at the moment.
Marayum is open to contributors.
Know of a word you want to add to the existing dictionaries? Want to propose including a language? To submit an entry, apply for an account and wait to be approved. Approved? Good, now log in and click Go to Dictionary. Once there, you can either add a new word or edit an existing one. (Read: UP student and professor develop digital dictionary of Philippine native languages)
Marayum’s team has the final say on your entry.
Your suggested word, definition, or language will undergo review by the online dictionary’s team of Reviewers and Editors from the University of the Philippines. With their knowledge and expertise in their respective languages, they could accept, reject, or request for more editing. Should your suggestion be included in Marayum, consider it your valuable contribution to keeping our local languages alive!