Sexy Statistics


Many Voices, One Nation: The Philippine Languages and Dialects in Figures

As our cultures change and evolve, our languages also change. New languages are formed or even discovered, while other languages are merged and some, unfortunately, are extinct. Examples of these new “unofficial” languages are the Gay Lingo and the Jejemon. Merged languages include Taglish (combination of English and Tagalog), Bisalog (Bisaya and Tagalog), and Bisakol (Bisaya and Bikol)

Many Voices, One Nation:
The Philippine Languages and Dialects in Figures

by Jose Ramon G. Albert, Ph.D  1                                         Filipino version


Yesterday we released the stellar gross domestic product (GDP) figures for the second quarter of the year, but I thought we should not forget that this month of August we are celebrating Buwan ng Wikang Pambansa.  The celebration of the importance of our national language has had a very long history.2  Even our national hero Jose Rizal stressed the importance of the national language when he said “ang hindi magmahal sa sariling wika ay higit pa ang amoy sa malansang isda.”  And what better way is there to take cognizance of the national language from the perspective of sexy statistics than to discuss linguistic trends in the country from 1990 to 2000?  This online article particularly answers basic statistical questions such as “How many languages/ dialects3 are there in the Philippines and in a particular region?”; “How many people speak a particular language/ dialect?”; and “How are these numbers changing?”  

But before I discuss answers to these questions, let me congratulate the Komisyon sa Wikang Filipino for another successful observance of the Buwan ng Wikang Pambansa. This year’s theme Wika Natin ang Daang Matuwid reminds us of how our national language, Filipino, unites us toward achieving our collective aspirations such as ensuring good governance, promoting transparency, and working toward inclusive growth. In a diverse society like ours where there are various ethno-linguistic groups, having a national language has proven to be important in nation-building. It has contributed in the process of creating a national identity and national pride.  A national language has instilled a sense of belongingness by enabling every citizen to participate in the national conversation.  The Komisyon sa Wikang Filipino should likewise be congratulated for initiating some heated discussions regarding how our country should be called, i.e. Filipinas rather than Pilipinas, although for sure adopting their resolution on the renaming may take a while to do assuming that it is implemented.  For sure, there will be opposers to this resolution will certainly object to calling themselves Finoy and Finay.

As far as national language is concerned, some people question whether we should keep pushing for the national language, especially since communicating in English is very important in this day and age.  A number of our workers overseas are certainly hired because of our fluency in English. While this may be true, but making the national language compete versus the English language is not the heart of the issue, especially in a country which has not just a lot of dialects but actually several languages across our 7,100 islands. What we should recognize is that the many languages and dialects in the country are reflective of our cultural heritage and diversity.

But why are there different languages or dialects in the country? The biblical story of the Tower of Babel tells us that people once spoke only one language. Then, people built a tower in Babylon that glorified their own achievements, rather than the glory of God. In return, God punished them and created numerous languages so that humankind could never work together again. However, the modern knowledge on the origin of languages states that languages are developed communally out of the necessity of communicating with each other. People agree how to say and express their ideas and this process of language formation is largely influenced environments. Following this theory, experts generally agree that our different languages are brought about by our country's topography and geography.  Even our computers and cellphones are hanging our ways of communication.

At present, official statistics on languages are mainly based on the decadal Census of Population and Housing (CPH), conducted by the National Statistics Office (NSO). The latest available data used in this article come from the 2000 CPH as the 2010 CPH data on languages are yet to be published.  Admittedly, these data are far from being perfect, but they do tell us a story. In addition, there are some issues on data comparability because of the changes in geo-political boundaries. It is important to note that our linguistic differences are also largely brought about by our country’s geography as well as topography. Hence, changing political subdivision affects data comparability. This is true not only on language statistics but also with other indicators. For instance, data for the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM), Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR), CALABARZON and MIMAROPA for 1980 and 1990 are not directly comparable with the 2000 data because these regions were established in the 1990s.

According to the 2000 CPH conducted by the National Statistics Office (NSO), there were around 150 languages and dialects in the country. Of these languages, Tagalog was the most generally spoken language in 5.4 million households, followed by Cebuano/Bisaya/Binisaya/Boholano in 3.6 million households, Ilocano in 1.4 million households, and Hiligaynon/Ilonggo in 1.1 million households (Table 1 and Figure 1).

When the respondents to the 2000 CPH were asked to indicate the major language spoken in their household,  the predominant responses indicated were local languages/dialects, while only a few reported foreign languages: English (for 6,166 households) and Chinese (for 6,032 households). Unlike in the 1980 and 1990 CPHs where other foreign languages were enumerated and identified, the 2000 CPH lumped all other foreign languages spoken which was in 2,770 households.

On the other hand, the least generally spoken language or dialect is Pinangal which was spoken in only 11 households, followed by Nilulubo in 18 households, Kaagan in 22 households, and Malbog in 26 households (Table 2).

As stated earlier, our languages are deeply related to our cultures. It can even be said that our languages are a good socio-cultural indicator that can somehow measure the welfare and status of our ethnic groups. That said, the figures above suggest that a number of our languages are “endangered”, with some even on the brink of extinction. Does this mean that some of our ethnic groups are endangered too?

As our cultures change and evolve, our languages also change. New languages are formed or even discovered, while other languages are merged and some, unfortunately, are extinct. Examples of these new “unofficial” languages are the Gay Lingo and the Jejemon. Merged languages include Taglish (combination of English and Tagalog), Bisalog (Bisaya and Tagalog), and Bisakol (Bisaya and Bikol). Although these languages or dialects are not official and therefore not accounted for, providing statistics on them will help us understand deeper our cultural dynamics and the way we cope with social changes.

Despite the limitations of census data on languages, these are still by far the most reliable tool for analyzing linguistic trends in the country over time and across areas. Furthermore, the CPH data on languages have been improving as evidenced by the increasing number of languages/dialects enumerated or identified in recent censuses. In the 1980 CPH, there were only around 130 languages/dialects accounted for. In the 1990 CPH, there were 140 languages/dialects identified, while in the 2000 there were around 150.

Among the 20 most generally spoken languages/dialects in households, Kankanai /Kankaney/Kankanaey exhibited the largest percentage increase with 178.4 percent from 1990 to 2000. This was followed by Karay-a/kiniray-a which increased by 92.1 percent and Manobo/Ata-Manobo by 83.4 percent (Table 3).

In terms of the percentage decreases among the languages/dialects generally spoken in households, Tagabili  exhibited the largest decrease with -99.6 percent followed by Atta/Ata/Ati with -70.7 percent and Batak/Binatak with -61.7percent (Table 4).  Further, there were six languages/dialects which recorded zero speakers in the 2000 CPH which noticeably are those of indigenous peoples. Does this imply as well that their population is also dwindling or becoming extinct? (Table 5)

As we examine regional breakdowns on data, we discover interesting facts. Data on languages/dialects from the 2000 CPH show the following (Table 6 and Figure 2):

  • Cebuano and Bisaya are the predominant languages in 5 regions: VII, IX, X, XI, and Caraga.

  • Tagalog is the predominant language in 4 regions: NCR, III, IVA, and IVB.

  • Ilocano is the predominant language in 3 regions: CAR, I, and II.

  • Ilonggo is the predominant language in 2 regions: VI and XII.

  • Bikol is only predominant in Region 5, while Waray is only predominant in Region VIII.

  • In ARMM, Tausug and Maranao are the two most generally spoken languages or dialects.

In terms of island groups:

  • In Luzon, the predominant language in Luzon is Tagalog followed by Ilocano and Bikol.

  • In Visayas, Cebuano and Bisaya are the predominant languages followed by Ilonggo and Waray.

  • In Mindanao, the Cebuano and Bisaya are also the predominant languages.

Keeping track of these changes can provide us insight in the movement of people across the country: regional migration, interaction/inter-marriages, etc. For instance, in SOCCSKSARGEN, Ilocano is the fourth most spoken language which may be attributed to the immigration of Ilocanos to the region in the seventies.4 In addition, these statistics on languages can be used in the successful implementation of the Mother-Tongue-Based Multi-Lingual Education (MTB-MLE)5 that is currently being carried out by the Department of Education.

Furthermore, government agencies have found it useful to translate their policies into Filipino and into the predominant language in a given area. Even when nationally representative surveys are conducted throughout the country by the NSO and other data collection agencies in the Philippine Statistical System (PSS), they take into account the predominant language/dialect spoken in an area.

Doing this helps people better appreciate and understand government policies and programs. The NSCB, as a matter of policy, publishes its online articles in English and Filipino to reach greater readership. Meanwhile, businesses use local languages in their advertisements to better sell their products in the countryside.

In the end, statistics in itself is a language--a means of communication about the world we live in. We always say at NSCB that statistics and data tell us stories about our country. In effect, official statisticians at NSCB, NSO and the entire PSS are storytellers of facts. That said, we continuously strive to improve our communication strategies to guide everyone so that we can all work toward having a better Philippines.  



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Filipino Version


Maraming Wika, Isang Bansa:
Mga Estadistika sa mga Wika at Dyalekto ng Pilipinas

Ni Jose Ramon G. Albert, Ph.D.1


Inilabas ng NSCB kahapon ang kahanga-hangang paglago ng ekonomiya noong Abril hanggang Hunyo ng 2013 kumpara sa mga naturing na buwan ng 2012. Sa gitna ng ating pagdiriwang sa tagumpay na ito, hindi dapat natin kaligtaan na ang buwan ng Agosto ay ang Buwan Ng Wikang Pambansa. Ang paggunita sa kahalagahan ng wikang pambansa ay may makulay at mahabang kasaysayan.2 Maging ang ating pambansang bayani na si Gat Jose Rizal ay binigyang diin ang kahalagahan ng ating wika sa kanyang tanyag na kataga: “Ang hindi magmahal sa sariling wika ay higit pa sa mabaho at malansang isda.” Bilang pakikiisa sa pagdiriwang na ito, tatalakayin ng artikulong ito ang mga kalagayan ng ating mga wika/dyalekto sa pamamagitan ng estadistika. Partikular na sinasagot dito kung ilan ang wika/dyalekto3 sa buong bansa at sa bawat rehiyon, ilang sambahayan kung saan pangkaraniwang ginagamit  ang partikular na wika/dyalekto, at kung paano nagbabago ang mga bilang na ito.

Bilang panimula, marapat lamang na bigyan natin ng papuri ang Komisyon sa Wikang Filipino sa muling matagumpay na pagdiriwang ng Buwan ng Wika ngayong taon na may temang “Wika Natin ang Daang Matuwid.”  Ito ay isang paalala sa atin kung paano ang ating wikang bansa ay nagsasama-sama sa ating lahat upang maisakatuparan ang ating kolektibong adhikain para sa good governance, transparency, at inclusive growth.

Sa isang bansang binubuo ng iba’t ibang ethno-linguistic groups, ang pagkakaroon ng isang wikang pambansa ay mahalaga para sa nation-building. Ang ating wikang pambansa ay nagbibigay daan sa pagbuo ng national identity at national pride. Ito rin ay nagbibigay sa atin ng kahulugan kung saan tayo napapabilang. Nakakatulong ito sa ating pagkakaintindihan at pakikilahok sa pambansang ugnayan.

Ang Komisyon sa Wikang Filipino ay dapat ding bigyang papuri sa pagbukas ng diskusyon ukol sa kung ano ang tamang dapat itawag sa ating bansa, kung ito ba ay “Filipinas” sa halip na “Pilipinas.” Malamang marami pa ring mga diskusyon hinggil sa paksang ito. Marahil pa ngam, magiging masalimuot ang ibang diskusyon bunsod ng mga pagtutol ng iba sa atin na  marahil hindi komportableng tawagin ang sarili nila bilang isang “Finoy” o “Finay”.

Bukod sa nabanggit, isa pang isyu na matagal nang pinagtatalunan ng ilan sa atin ay kung dapat bang ipagpatuloy ang pagsulong sa Filipino bilang pambansang wika gayong ang kakayahang pagsalita sa wikang Ingles ay mas nagiging mahalaga sa kasalukuyan. Halimbawa, ang ilan sa ating mga kababayang nagtatrabaho sa ibang bansa ay mas madaling nakuha ang kanilang mga trabaho dahil sa kanilang kakayahang magsalita ng Ingles. Sa halip na bigyang tuon kung alin ang mas mahalaga sa dalawang wikang nabanggit, marahil dapat nating mabigyang halaga aahat ng ating wika at dyalekto saan man sa ating 7,100 isla ng ating bansa.

Saan nga ba may iba’t ibang  wika/dyalekto? Batay sa kwento sa Bibliya tungkol sa Tore ng Babel, iisa lamang ang wika ng sangkatauhan noong unang panahon. Ngunit, nagtayo ang mga tao ng isang tore bilang papugay sa kanilang sariling tagumpay, sa halip na papugayan ang kaluwalhatian ng Diyos. Dahil dito, nagalit ang Diyos at pinarusahan ang mga tao sa pamamagitan ng paglikha ng iba’t ibang wika upang hindi sila magkaintindihan at magkaisa. Ayon naman sa kontemporaryong paniniwala, ang ating iba’t ibang wika/dialekto ay bunsod ng pagkakaiba-iba ng ating kapaligiran. Halimbawa, sa konteksto ng Pilipinas, iba’t iba ang mga wika/dyalekto dahil sa ating topograpiya at heograpiya. At sa ating modernong mundo, ang makabagong gadgets tulad ng mga computers at cellphones ay nakakaapekto sa pagbuo ng ating mga wika/dialekto.

Sa kasalukuyan, ang opisyal na estadistika tungkol sa mga wika/dyalekto sa ating bansa ay hango sa Census of Population and Housing (CPH) na isinasagawa tuwing isang dekada ng National Statistics Office (NSO).  Ang pinakabagong datos para sa wika/dyalekto ay batay sa 2000 CPH sapagakat hindi pa naisasalathala ang mga datos ng 2010 CPH. Mahalagang isaalang-alang na ang mga datos na ito ay hindi perpekto, gayunpaman sila ay nagpapahiwatig sa atin ng kalagayan ng mga wika/dyalekto sa bansa. Bukod pa dyan, mahalaga ring unawain na may isyu tungkol sa paghahambing ng mga datos dito dala ng  pagbabago ng ating mga geo-political boundary. Tulad ng nabanggit sa taas, malaki ang impluwensya ng topograpiya at heograpiya sa pagkakaiba-iba ng ating mga wika/salita. Samakatuwid, nakakaapekto ang pagbabago ng mga geo-political subdivision sa data comparability. Ito ay totoo hindi lamang sa mga estadistika ng wika/dyalekto kundi pati na rin sa iba pang mga statistical indicators. Halimbawa, ang mga datos para sa Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM), Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR), CALABARZON at MIMAROPA para sa 1980 at 1990 ay hindi direktang maihahambing sa mga datos para sa 2000 dahil itinatag ang mga rehiyong ito noong 1990s.

Ayon sa 2000 CPH, mayroong mahigit kumulang 150 wika/dyalekto sa bansa.  Tagalog ang pinakakaraniwang ginagamit sa 5.4 milyon na sambahayan, sinusundan ng Cebuano / Bisaya / Binisaya / Boholano sa 3.6 milyon na sambahayan, Ilocano sa 1.4 na sambahayan, at Hiligaynon / Ilonggo sa 1.1 na sambahayan (Table 1 at Figure 1 ).

Nang tanungin ang mga respondent ng 2000 CPH kung anong wika/dialekto ang kanilang pangunahing ginagamit na pananalita sa kanilang sambahayan, karamihan sa kanila ay sumagot ng  lokal na wika /dyalekto, samantalang ang ilan ay nagbigay ng banyagang wika tulad ng  Ingles (para sa 6166 sambahayan), Intsik (para sa 6032 sambahayan) at All Other Foreign Language (para sa 2,770 sambahayan). Ang ganitong disaggregation ay kaiba sa 1980 at 1990 CPH kung saan mas maraming mga itinalagang banyagang wika.

Ayon pa rin sa 2000 CPH, ang mga wika/dyalektong may pinakakaunting sambahayan na gumagamit ay ang Pinangal sa 11 lamang na sambahayan, sinusundan ng Nilulubo sa 18 samabahayan, Kaagan sa 22 samabahayan, at Malbog sa 26 sambahayan (Table 2).

Gaya ng nabanggit, ang ating mga wika/dyalekto ay may malalim na kaugnayan sa ating kultura. Kaya naman ang mga estadistikang ito ay mahusay na socio-cultural indicator na sumasalamin, halimbawa sa kalagayan ng mga ethnic group sa ating bansa. Mula sa mga estadistikang nabanggit sa itaas, maaring sabihin na ilan sa ating mga wika/dyalekto ay nanganganib mamatay o mawala. Ang ibig sabihin ba nito ay maaring nanganganib rin ang ilan sa ating mga katutubong grupo?

Tulad ng ating kultura, ang mga wika rin ay nagbabago kasabay ng panahon. May ilang mga bagong wika/dyalekto na nabubuo o natuklasan tulad ng Gay lingo at ng Jejemon. Habang ang iba ay naihahalo sa ibang wika/dyalekto tulad ng Taglish (kombinasyon ng Ingles at Tagalog), Bisalog (Bisaya at Tagalog), at Bisakol (Bisaya at Bikol). Hindi opisyal ang mga wikang ito subalit kung ang mga ito ay maitatala upang magkaroon ng estadistika, makakatulong ito sa mas malalim na pag-unawa sa  ating cultural dynamics.

Sa kabila ng mga limitasyon ng mga datos sa wika/dyalekto, ang mga ito ay maaring gawing basehan sa pag-analisa sa mga linguistic trends sa ating bansa. Ang pangungulekta rin sa mga datos na ito ay nagiging mas mahusay at mas malawak sa pagdaan ng panahon. Sa 1980 CPH, mayroong lamang 130 mga wika/dyalekto na natala sa bansa. Noong 1990 CPH naman, mayroong 140 na wika/dyalekto na natala at 150 noong 2000.

Sa top 20 wika/dyalektong panagkarinawang ginagamit sa sambahayan, ang mga sumusunod ang may pinakamalaking percentage increases mula noong 1990 hangang 2000 (Table 3):  Kankanai /Kankaney/Kankanaey (178.4 percent), sinundan Karay-a/kiniray-a (92.1 percent) at Manobo (83.4 percent).
Ang mga wika/dyalektong nagpamalas ng pinakamalaking percentage decreases (Table 4) ay ang Tagabili (-99.6 percent), sinusundan ng  Atta/Ata/Ati (-70.7 percent) at ng Batak/Binatak (-61.7percent ). Mayroon naming anim na  wika/dyalektong  na wala nang gumagamit ayon sa 2000 CPH (Table 5).

Kapag tinignan natin ang mga datos sa mga rehiyon, kapansin-pansin ang mga sumusunod (Table 6 and Figure 2):

  • Cebuano at Bisaya ang mga pangunahing wika  sa 5 rehiyon: VII, IX, X, XI, and Caraga.

  • Tagalog ang pangunahing wika  sa 4 rehiyon: NCR, III, IVA, and IVB.

  • Ilocano ang pangunahing wika  sa 3 rehiyon: CAR, I, and II.

  • Ilonggo ang pangunahing wika  sa 2 rehiyon: VI and XII.

  • Ang Bikol at Waray ay ang pangunahing wika sa iisang rehiyon lamang. Region 5 para sa Bikol at Region 6 para sa Waray

  • Sa ARMM, Tausug and Maranao ang pangunahing wika

Sa mga major island groups:

  • Sa Luzon, ang mga pangunahing wika ay Tagalog sinusundan ng Ilocano at Bikol.

  • Sa Visayas, ang mga pangunahing wika ay Cebuano at Bisaya sinusundan ng Ilonggo at Waray.

  • Sa Mindanao, ang mga pangunahing wika ay Cebuano at Bisaya

Ang mga edstatiska ito ay magbibigay rin sa atin ng mga pananaw ukol sa pagkilos ng mga tao sa bansa lalo na sa migration, interaction/inter-marriages, atbp. Halimbawa, sa SOCCSKSARGEN, Ilocano ang ika-apat na pangkaraniwang wika/dyalektong ginagamit na marahil bunsod ng immigration ng mga Ilocano sa rehiyon noong dekada ’70.4 Bukod rito, maari ring magamit ang mga edstatiska sa wika para sa matagumpay na implementasyon ng Mother-Tongue-Based Multi-Lingual Education (MTB-MLE)5 na kasalukuyang ipanapatupad ng Kagawaran ng Edukasyon.

Marami sa mga ahensya ng gobyerno ang nagsasalin ng kanilang mga polisiya at patakaran sa Filipino at sa pangunahing wika sa partikular na lugar. Dahil dito, mas nauunawaan ng mga karaniwang mamayan ang kanilang mga programa. Ang mga surveys ng PSS halimbawa ay naisasalin sa lokal na mga wika/dyalekto. Ang NSCB naman ay nagpapatupad ng bilingual policy sa paglathala ng mga online articles. Samantalang, ang mga negosyo naman ay gumagamit ng lokal na wika sa kanilang mga advertisements para mas maganda ang benta.

Bilang pagtatapos, ang edstatiska ay maituturing na isang wika ginagamit upang maintindahan natin ang mundong ating ginagalawan. Sinabi namin palagi sa NSCB na ang aming mga edstatiska at datos ay nagsasabi ng mga kwento tungkol sa ating bayan. Sa gayon, ang aming trabaho bilang official statisticians ay tagapag kwento ng katotohanan. Kaya naman patuloy naming pinaghuhusayan at pinabubuti ang aming mga communication strategy upang magabayan ang bawa’t isa sa atin tungo sa mas maunlad na Pilipinas.


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1 Secretary General of the National Statistical Coordination Board (NSCB). The NSCB, a statistical agency functionally attached to the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA), is the highest policy making and coordinating body on statistical matters in the Philippines. Immediately prior to his appointment at NSCB, Dr. Albert was a Senior Research Fellow at the Philippine Institute for Development Studies, a policy think tank attached to NEDA. Dr. Albert finished summa cum laude with a Bachelor of Science degree in Applied Mathematics from the De La Salle University in 1988. He completed a Master of Science in Statistics from the State University of New York at Stony Brook in 1989 and a Ph.D. in Statistics from the same university in 1993. He is a Professorial Lecturer at the Decision Sciences and Innovation Department of Ramon V. Del Rosario College of Business, De La Salle University. He is also a past President of the Philippine Statistical Association, a Fellow of the Social Weather Stations, and an Elected Regular Member of the National Research Council of the Philippines.

This article was co-written and translated in Filipino by Precious Jose E. Baroy, Information Officer III of the NSCB. The authors thank Candido J. Astrologo, Jr., Eunice N. Tambasen, Edwin U. Aragon, Sonny U. Gutierrez, Simonette Nisperos and Noel S. Nepomuceno of the NSCB, for the assistance in the preparation of the article. The views expressed in the article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the NSCB and its Technical Staff.

2 The celebration of the importance of the national language started in 1946, when then President Sergio S. Osmeña Sr. issued Proclamation No. 35 designating March 27 to April 2 each year as "National Language Week." A decade later, President Ramon F. Magsaysay changed the date of the celebration to August 13-19 to honor the Birth Anniversary of President Manuel L. Quezon, considered the Father of the National Language. Thirty three years after this, President Corazon C. Aquino issued Proclamation No. 19 that also proclaimed National Language Week on August 13-19 every year. President Fidel V. Ramos subsequently lengthened the celebration to a whole month when he issued Proclamation No. 1041 in the late 1990s.

3 The conceptual distinction between a dialect and a language is not fully discussed and observed in this article because the 2000 CPH, which is the main source of data used in this article, did not differentiate between the two. However, for purposes of providing basic information, the United Nations defines a language as "a means of verbal communication used by a large community, including the words, their pronunciation and the methods of combining them" ( glossary/detail.asp?ID=5592). On the other hand, the Dictionary of Linguistics  defines a dialect "as a variety of a language used by people from a particular geographic area" (

4 newspapers?nid=2479&dat=20000519&id= ilg1AAAAIBAJ&sjid=gSUMAAAAIBAJ&pg=3636,9167840

5 Mother-Tongue-Based Multi-Lingual Education  (MTB-MLE) is a teaching approach implemented by the Depertment of Education where the mother tongue or native language is used in all learning areas from Kinder to Grade 3 except in the teaching of Filipino and English subjects. At present there are 19 languages used in this program: Tagalog, Kapampangan, Pangasinense, Ilokano, Bikol, Cebuano, Hiligaynon, Waray, Tausug, Maguindanaoan, Maranao, Chabacano, Ybanag, Ivatan, Sambal, Aklanon, Kinaray-a, Yakan, and  Surigaonon

Table 1. Top 20 Language or Dialect Generally Spoken
in the Households: Philippines, 2000


Number of Households

Percent Distribution

1 Tagalog 5,368,187 35.1
2 Cebuano/Bisaya/Binisaya/Boholano 3,627,473 23.7
3 Ilocano 1,327,211 8.7
4 Hiligaynon/Ilonggo 1,065,767 7.0
5 Bikol/Bicol 705,147 4.6
6 Waray 419,899 2.7
7 Kapampangan 413,552 1.6
8 Pangasinan/Panggalato 237,181 1.3
9 Maguindanao 165,718 1.1
10 Tausug 151,277 1.0
11 Maranao 150,151 1.0
12 Karay-a/kiniray-a 193,316 0.7
13 Kankanai/Kankaney/Kankanaey 112,831 0.6
14 Akeanon/Aklanon 93,205 0.6
15 Capizeño 92,879 0.6
16 Surigaonon 90,597 0.6
17 Masbateño/Masbatenon 87,488 0.6
18 Zamboangeño-Chavacano 69,041 0.5
19 Ibanag 64,425 0.4
20 Manobo/Ata-Manobo 48,215 0.3
  Total Households Enumerated   100%

Source: National Statistics Office

Figure 1. Generally Spoken Languages/Dialects in the Philippines: 2000

          Source of basic data: National Statistics Office

Table 2. Ten Least Languages or Dialects Generally Spoken
in the Households: Philippines, 2000

Language Regions Where Spoken In Number of Households
Pinangal CAR 11
Nilulubo 4B, 3 18
Kaagan 4B, NCR 22
Malbog 10 26
Sulod 4B 30
Tagabili 12 32
Ligbuk/Lugbok 9, ARMM 46
Remontado 4B 50
Iyiwaks Caraga, ARMM, 12, 10, 7 68
Karaga 11, 9, 4B, 3 71

          Source: National Statistics Office

Table 3: Top 10 Languages with Largest Percentage Increases
(Among the Top 20 Generally Spoken Languages in Households): Philippines, 2000 and 1990

Language/Dialect 2000


Percent Increase
Kankanai/Kankaney/Kankanaey 112,831 40,524 178.4
Karay-a/kiniray-a 193,316 100,626 92.1
Manobo/Ata-Manobo 48,215 26,295 83.4
Surigaonon 90,597 57,671 57.1
Tagalog 5,368,187 3,692,434 45.4
Masbateño/Masbatenon 87,488 63,153 38.5
Kapampangan 413,552 309,187 33.8
Zamboangeño-Chavacano 69,041 52,100 32.5
Cebuano/Bisaya/Binisaya/Boholano 3,627,473 2,809,410 29.1
Akeanon/Aklanon 93,205 72,952 27.8

       Source: National Statistics Office

Table 4: 10 Languages with Largest Percentage Decreases:
Philippines, 2000 and 1990

Language/Dialect 2000 1990 Percent Decrease
Tagabili 32 8,817 -99.6
Atta/Ata/Ati 940 3,209 -70.7
Batak/Binatak 1,483 3,876 -61.7
Agta 506 869 -41.8
Ifugao 19,912 31,484 -36.8
Ilongot 2,182 3,000 -27.3
Tinggian 6,360 8,445 -24.7
Bagobo/Guinga 5,999 7,646 -21.5
Bontok/Binontok 4,864 5,412 -10.1
Sama (Samal)/Abaknon 44,199 45,279 -2.4

        Source: National Statistics Office

Table 5: Languages/Dialects which recorded Zero speakers
in households: Philippines, 2000

Language/Dialect 2000 1990
Banuanon 0 120
Botolan 0 48
Itbayaten 0 89
Kallahan 0 503
Obian 0 60
Pullon-Mapun 0 4,274

                        Source: National Statistics Office

Table 6. Top 5 Generally Spoken Languages
by Region: 2000

Figure 2: Top Languages/Dialects Generally Spoken by Region: 2000

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Posted: 30 August 2013


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