A N G U A G E
The native tongue of
Aklan is called Aklanon. Whether it is a dialect or a language
in its own right is a matter of judgment and taste.
To call it either a language or a dialect is also a political
question. Language constitutes identity. It forms the fiber of
the people's pride. In effect, is one an Aklanon because one
speaks Aklanon, or because one lives in Aklan, or because one
is from Aklan?
Moreover, the decision to call it either a language or a
dialect also entails the question of superiority or
inferiority. Is Aklanon simply a dialect because it is not the
tongue of power in the region?
If you consider it a dialect, one important question arises: a
dialect of which particular language?
Dialects under one particular language should be mutually
intelligible. Is Aklanon intelligible to an Ilonggo (who
speaks Ilonggo, the leading variant of Hiligaynon) or an
Antiqueño (who speaks Kinaray-a)?
Over time, a dialect evolves into a language.
According to David Paul Zorc and Beato de la Cruz, Aklanon is
a dialect which grew out of the West Visayan language.
Their formulation, of course, comes from a purely linguistic
perspective which seeks to show the evolution of dialects and
languages. The chart below is reproduced from their text. (See
c. 35000 B.C.
c. 1300 B.C.
c. 200 B.C.
c. 200 A.D.
c. 700 A.D.
| Aklanon |
differentiate themselves from other speakers through a
particular linguistic peculiarity: the voiced velar fricative,
or the ea--ei--eo-eu sound.
Examples: ba-eay for house
ka-eag for soul/spirit
Two classic examples of Aklanon sentences
are the following:
" Ro anwang gaeugaeog sa
(The carabao wallows in
the mud hole.)
kaeamay gakoeueapot sa kaeaha."
(The brown sugar is sticking in
(If you wish to hear how the words in these two sentences are
Citing a respected linguist, Zorc and de la Cruz stated:
"This sound is certainly not unique since it is found in
at least five other Philippine dialects and also in other
languages around the world."