Dr. Michal Temkin Martínez
There are 175 languages in the 7000+ islands that make up the Philippines. Hiligaynon is the fourth largest language spoken on the islands. The sound inventory of Hiligaynon has 22 phonemes, which include 17 consonants and 5 vowels. Contact with Spanish, English, and neighboring Filipino languages (mostly Cebuano, Tagolog, Kinaray-a, Aklanon) has influenced Hiligaynon resulting in many loanwords entering the lexical inventory of speakers of Hiligaynon. Although these loanwords contain sounds not native to Hiligaynon, most of them have assimilated to match the phonology of Hiligaynon. An example of this assimilation is seen in loanwords containing the labiodental fricatives [f] and [v] being pronounced with the biliabial stops [p] and [b] instead. This presentation identifies the phonology of modern Hiligaynon by briefly comparing key features of its sound system to that of other languages found in the Philippines. Morphophonemic rules will identify some of the word-formation processes that are influenced by the language’s phonology. The aim of this presentation is to clarify some of the phonological features of the language since an accurate description of the language is not yet available.