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BaybayinStyles&TheirSources

BaybayinStyles&TheirSources

AlthoughitiscommonlybelievedthateachprovinceinthePhilippineshaditsownancientalphabet,Spanish
writersofthe16thcenturyreportedthatthepracticeofwritingwasfoundonlyintheManilaareaatthetimeof
firstcontact.Writingspreadtotheotherislandslater,inaboutthemiddleofthe1500s.Forthisreason,the
SpaniardsusuallycalledtheancientFilipinoscript"Tagalogletters,"regardlessofthelanguageforwhichitwas
used.
Thebaybayinscript,asitisknowntoday,felloutofuseinmostareasbytheendofthe1600s.Inthe19th
century,historiansgatheredoldsamplesofbaybayinwritingfromvarioussourcesandlocationsandassembled
theminchartsforcomparison,notingthesourcelocationorlanguageofeachspecimen.Mostofthesesame
historianscametotheconlcusionthatallthevariationsinthelettershapeswereduetothetastesandwriting
stylesoftheidividualswhowrotetheoriginalspecimensandnotduetoregionaldifferences.Inotherwords,
therewasonlyonebaybayin.But,inthe20thcenturymanywriterscopiedthecomparisonchartsintotheir
schooltextbookswithlittleornoexplanationattached.Thusmostreaderswereledtobelievethateachsample
ofwritingwasadifferentalphabetaccordingtoitstitleinthechart.
Therewasactuallymuchmorevariationinthehandwritingfromoneindividualtothenext,evenwithinthesame
geographicalregion,thanthereisinthischartofsupposedlydistinctalphabets.Comparethischarttothe
examplesofbaybayinwritingonthepages,TheBaybayinasWrittenbyFilipinosandBaybayin
Handwritingofthe1600s.(Readmoreaboutbaybayinvariantsinthemainarticle.)
Thisisachartofsomebaybayinformsandtheoriginalsourceofeach.Theyaresortedchronologicallyand
groupedbytheirfamiliarregionnamesbuttheyarenotdistinctalphabetsfromdifferentregionsorlanguages
theyareonlyvariationsoftypestylesandhandwriting.Therearedetailsforeachbelow.

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BaybayinStyles&TheirSources

SourceInformation
Doctrina1593
FromtheDoctrinaChristiana,enlenguaespaolaytagalaprintedin1593.TheTagalogtextwas
basedmainlyonamanuscriptwrittenbyFr.JuandePlacencia.FriarsDomingodeNievaandJuande
SanPedroMartyrsupervisedthepreparationandprintingofthebook,whichwascarriedoutbyan
unnamedChineseartisan.Thisistheearliestexampleofthebaybayinthatexiststodayanditisthe
onlyexamplefromthe1500s.Thesampleshownismyownfontbasedonthefacsimile,Doctrina
Christiana,TheFirstBookPrintedinthePhilippines,Manila,1593.NationalHistoricalInstitute,
Manila,1973.2ndprinting,1991.
Chirino1604
FromRelacindelasIslasFilipinasbyPedroChirino,publishedin1604.Thesampleshownisfrom
RelacindelasIslasFilipinas,ThePhilippinesin1600.Manila[HistoricalConservationSociety],1969.
TheletterAmayhavebeenprintedbackward,soIhavereverseditforthischart.
Lopez1620
FromLibroanaisurtanamintibagstiDoctrinaCristiana...writtenbyFranciscoLopezin1620but
bearingthepublishingdateof1621.ThisexamplewasscannedfromthechartinDr.Ignacio
Villamor'sLaAntiguaEscrituraFilipina(1922)p.103.SeeBaybayinVariantsformoreinformation
aboutthistypefaceandFinalConsonantsforinformationaboutLopez'smodificationofthe
baybayin.
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Mntrida1637
FromAlonsodeMntrida'sArtedelalenguaBisayaHiligaynadelaisladePanay,1637.Mntrida's
fonthasbeenlistedinsomechartsastheVisayanalphabet.However,likeotherearlySpanish
writers,MntridaconsideredallthevariantlettershapestobepartofonePhilippinescript.Hewrote
thefollowingabouthistypeface:
ItistobenotedthatourBisayanshavesomeletterswithdifferentshapes,whichIplaceherebuteventhey
themselvesdonotagreeontheshapesoftheirlettersforthisreason,andbecauseofthelimitedtypesavailable,I
haveshownthecharactersaccordingtotheTagalogs.B12

ThissamplewastakenfromthewebsitePromotoraEspaoladeLingistica(PROEL,
http://www.proel.org/alfabetos/bisaya.htm,bisaya3.gif) ItwasprobablybasedonachartbyJuanR.
Franciscoinhiswork"PhilippinePalaeography"inthePhilippineJournalofLinguistics,special
monograph3,1973.
Ezguerra1663
FromDomingoEzguerra'sArtedelalenguaBisayaenlaprovinciadeLeyte,1663.Accordingto
WilliamH.Scott,thelettersthatEzguerrarecorded"containwhatareprobablyengraver'serrorsfor
example,theuseofamarginalcheckmarknormaltoSpanishusageofthetime,torepresenttwo
differentlettersofthealphabet".(Scott,1994,p.95)Thesewereprobablythealternateformsofthe
AandtheI/EandpossiblythealternateformoftheDa.TherewasnocharacterforYa.Ihave
movedthealternateI/Eintothatposition.Theotheralternatelettersarenotshownhere.This
samplewasalsotakenfromthewebsitePromotoraEspaoladeLingistica(PROEL,
http://www.proel.org/alfabetos/bisaya.htm,bisaya3.gif) ItwasprobablybasedonachartbyJuanR.
Franciscoinhiswork"PhilippinePalaeography"inthePhilippineJournalofLinguistics,special
monograph3,1973.
Benavente1699
Froma1699manuscriptbyFr.AlvarodeBenavente,ArteyVocabulariodelalenguaPampanga,
citedinKapampnganorCapampgan:SettlingtheDisputeontheKapampnganRomanized
Orthography(2006)byMichaelRaymonM.Pangilinan.Thisisprobablythesourceofthe
KapampanganexampleofSinibaldodeMas.(Seebelow)
SanAgustn1703
FromGaspardeSanAgustn'sCompendiodelalenguaTagalawrittenin1703andpublishedin1787.
ThesampleshownwasscannedfromPreSpanishManila,AreconstructionofthePreHistoryof
Manila,byJesusT.Peralta&LucilaA.Salazar.NationalHistoricalInstitute,Manila,1974.2nd
printing,1993.p.78.ReproducedfromCiprianoMarcillayMartn'sEstudiodelosantiguosalfabetos
Filipinos,1895
Hilario1962
FromtheunpublishedbookBayungSunis(1962)byZoiloHilariooftheAkademyangKapampangan.
Althoughthisstylewasbasedonhistoricalexamples,itwasactuallyHilario'sownpersonal
handwritingstyle.ThesampleshownhereisfromaphotographbyZoiloHilarioinKapampangan
Writing:ASelectedCompendiumandCritiquebyEvangelinaHilarioLacson(1984).Manythanksto
MichaelRaymonM.Pangilinan(a.k.a.SiuldingMengbie)forprovidingthesourceinformation.
Hervs1787
FromSaggiopratticodellelingueconprolegomenieunaraccoltadiOrazioniDomincaleinpidi
trecentolingueedialetti,1787(Practicalexamplesoflanguageswithprologuesandacollectionof
theLord'sprayerinover300languagesanddialects)byLorenzoHervsyPandura.Becausethis
bookwasnotwrittenspecificallyaboutthePhilippinesorPhilippinelanguages,Ibelievethatthetype
styleistakenfromanearliersource.ItmostcloselyresemblesEzguerra'stypefaceof1663.The
sampleshownhereismyownfont.ItwasbasedontwoAustrianbooksthatreproducedCebuano
textinthisfont,IllustrirteGeschichtederSchrift(TheIllustratedHistoryofWriting)byKarlFaulman,
1880andSprachenhalle(HallofLanguages)byAloisAuer,1847.TherewasnoletterforWathe
U/Ocharacterwasusedinsteadinthesedocuments.TheRsoundwasrepresentedbytheletterDa
inBisayanwordsandtheLacharacterwasusedforSpanishwords.Thescansofthesedocuments
wereprovidedbyMr.WolfgangKuhl.
Jacquet1831
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FromEugneJacquet's"Noticesurl'alphabetYlocouIlog"inConsidrationssurlesalphabetsdes
Philippines,1831.Thesampleshownhereisareconstructionoftwolowresolutionscansofachart
byJuanR.Franciscoinhiswork"PhilippinePalaeography"inthePhilippineJournalofLinguistics,
specialmonograph3,1973.Hischart,inturn,wasbasedonexamplesinabookbyPardodeTavera,
Contribucinparaelestudiodelosantiguosalfabetosfilipinos.Thescansweredownloadedfromtwo
websites:AlibataatPandesalbyTerrioEchavez(http://alibataatpandesal.com/pilipino.htmlpilipino.jpg) and
PromotoraEspaoladeLingistica(PROEL,http://www.proel.org/alfabetos/tagalo5.gif).Someexamples
fromDavidDiringer'sTheAlphabet,AKeytotheHistoryofMankind(Thirdedition,1968.p.298)
wereusedtoreconstructtheblurredimagesofthescans.Diringer'ssourcewasFletcherGardner's
PhilippinneIndicStudiesof1943.
Enrile1835
FromCarcteresantguosconlosqueescribianestosNaturalesdelTagalogyCamarnes(Ancient
characterswithwhichthesenativesoftheTagalogsandCamarinesusedtowrite"),thePascualEnrile
collection18oftheBibliotecadelMuseoNavalinMadrid.(ms.2287,doc.32:214214v.)Photocopy
providedbyDr.MalcolmWarrenMintz.
Mas1843
FromthechartbySinibaldodeMasySansinInformesobreelestadodelasIslasFilipinasen1842
Vol.1.Madrid,1843.AlloftheexamplesbyMaswerecopiedintoPedroPaterno'schartCuadro
Paleografico(1890).TheseexamplesarefromthereproductionofSinibaldodeMas'chartin
WilliamHenryScott'sBarangay,SixteenthCenturyPhilippineCultureandSociety,1994,p.214.
MainBaybayinArticle
TheBaybayinasWrittenbyFilipinos
BaybayinHandwritingofthe1600s
CuadroPaleografico
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PaulMorrow
11November2002
Lastupdatedon7April,2011

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