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INATI: THE HIDDEN

LANGUAGE OF PANAY,
PHILIPPINES
F. DOUGLAS
PENNOYER
Reported By:
Laura Francesca T. Gonzales
Lingg 121
Introduction
• üConsidering the tremendous 20th century compilation of
linguistic data on Philippine languages, it is incredible to
realize that there exists today in the island of Panay, a
separate Philippine Language spoken by the Ati Negritos
for which no published material exists, the Inati
language.
• üTwo distinct dialects of this language survive.
• üThis article begins with a general description of the
research area and explores some reasons why past
investigators failed to research and analyze this
language.
• üRelationships with other languages are explored
through lexical and grammatical comparative analysis.
• üThe survival, past research and it’s uniqueness is given.
Chronology of Ati Linguistic
Research
• üChirino was first to mention Visayan negrito vocabulary
items but includes no distinction from Visayan languages
• üPavon completed a dictionary and grammar of a
Negrito language which was lost afterwards.
• ü Semper started the plea for linguistic work among
Visayan Negritos because he feared the language would
soon be extinct
• üIn 1939, Manuel Gloria recorded and published three
short sentences of the Negritos in his Primitive Man. He
notes: “there is a great deal of Visayan in the language
spoken by the Negritos of Janiuay. But their language
differs much from the Visayan spoken today…the
Visayans assured me that they can hardly understand
the Ates when they are talking among themselves…”
• üRahmann and Maceda attempted to record any
different Negrito languages. They mentioned a
‘faint possibility’ of an Ati language existing
among more remote groups. They were aware
of a different language spoken by the Ati’s
among themselves.
• üZorc’s comprehensive study of 36 Visayan
speech varieties provides the basis for a
comparison between Inati and those languages.
Yet, he listed Ati as a Kinaray-a dialect for the
reason that many Ati speaks the latter elsewhere
so it is a natural assumption that the Ati speak a
Kinaray-a dialect.
• üDelgado (1981:41) in a paper on Ati of barrio Tina in
Antique,reports that “the Negritos used to have a dialect
of their own which they called the ‘inati’, and which was
much different from the Kinaray-a of the Antiqueños. The
said dialect is fast vanishing and presently, only a few
Atis can speak it. It is now being replaced by Kinaray-a
which they find more convenient to use among other
Visayans.
• üKwong (1978L:77) states, “Inati, as it was still in
existence, was observed to be very distinct and different
from the dialect of the place which was Malaynon…”
• üThe Tezukas, upon visiting Nagpana, Barotac Viejo,
provided much information concerning the language and
it’s distinctness from Kinaray-a. Their survey report also
provides evidence of the existence of the two dialects of
Inati.
• Pennoyer supports the conclusion that the
“best Inati” (fewer borrowings) is spoken in
Nagpana and that the Ati of Cogon, Malay
speak a different language.
• üThe demographic data gathered in 1983
indicates that there are around 1,000 Inati
speaking population and many of them
are bilingual speakers.
• üNagpana, where Inati is spoken widely, is
a polyglot community and the SIL survey
validates that fact.
Two Inati
Dialects:
Ati and Bisayan speakers throughout
Panay commonly refer to the Ati language
as “Inati”.
However, majority of the speakers who
reside in Iloilo use the term Inete for their
language. While that spoken in Northern
Panay is called Sogodnin.
 A trip to Cogon, Malay confirmed the existence of
the dialect ‘Sogodnin’ spoken by the Ilo-ilo Ati.
Although, when they speak it, the result was
usually a mixture of Tagalog and Malaynon (the
local language). An Ati informant said that the Ati
of that area are ashamed of their language and
rarely used it. Now, knowledge of Sogodnin is
limited to only few individuals who can speak
isolated sentences, and one or two who could
converse in the dialect.
 For the purpose of this paper, since Sogodnin is
no longer in daily use, the term Inati is used for
Inete, the dialect of the Iloilo Ati, and Sogodnin
for the disappearing dialect of Northern Panay.
Phonemic Inventory and
Chart
p t (ts) k i
b d (z) g e a o
m n ng
s (š) (h)
w y
(r) l

Parentheses suggest doubtful phonemic status requiring further analysis


 Tezuka lists 19 consonants (p, t, k, , b, d, g, s,
ts, s, h, z, m, n, ng, l, r, y,and w) and 5 vowels (i,
e, a, o, ).
 Data on stress and vowel lengths were
presented with no conclusions.
Ex: ánay ‘termite’ anáy ‘to wait’
 Minimal pairs contrasting these phonemes were
given except for ts, š, and ž. Pennoyer found
these phonemes on his data as well.
Ex: ts is found in loan words
pitsay ‘cabbage’ tsuper ‘driver’
THE VOWEL e: the low,
front, unrounded vowel
 The phoneme e or ä, which is found in Inati, is not
found in the surrounding Visayan languages and is
rarely found in Philippine languages.
 Here are minimal pairs to attest to the phonemic status of e
as distinct from a:
aram ‘knowldege’ baga ‘lung’
erem ‘to borrow’ bege ‘ember’
 In addition, here are other e words gathered:
bebete ‘husband’ kilele ‘acquaintance’ wele ‘left’
kewkew ‘ fish’ kebes ‘tail, penis’ kite ‘we’
bebe ‘mouth’ medelem ‘dark’
Metebe ‘fat’ keremkem ‘hand’
 It is unclear how or when Inati developed a low, front
unrounded vowel. Most of the examples are cognates with
words in other Philippine languages showing an /a/.
 Inati also has doublets.
Ex: adlaw ‘day’ and edlew ‘sun’
baga ‘lungs’ and bege ‘chest’
these are a/e examples from the same proto-word.
 Vowel harmony rule has caused /a/ to assimilate to /e/ in all
/e/ words. Even some prefixes are affected by this rule.
 Also, a rule involving stress and glides is a factor. Tezuka
(1938:8) mentions that there are “cases when w and y occur
syllable finally in CVC and receive a stress.”
In this language, stress on glides may overrule vowel
harmony.
kay.ti ‘this’ kay.ni ‘that’
kay.nad ‘that’ kaw.ni ‘a while ago’
Proto *R to D
• Basing to the RGH law of Conant, he addressed
the issue regarding two of the Philippine
languages, Inibaloi and Inati, of having Proto *R
to /d/ changes.
• Inati has examples of Proto *R in medial and
final positions, as well as one initial *R.
*buRhaw ‘albino’ Inati bodhaw
*busuR ‘bow’ Inati bosod
*sunuR ‘burn’ Sog sunud
Other Reflexes of *R
• *R G
Because of contact on the surrounding
languages, Inati has some replacements of
traditional words.
Ex: kelep ‘night’ is replaced by Hil and Kin
gabi-i from *Proto-Austronesian Rabi-iH
• *R Y
Ex: yemot ‘root, medicine’ (*Ramut)
Inati
Pronouns
• Shows forms that are definitely Bisayan, and perhaps not even central
Philippine.
• An *I- prefix and *ki- for oblique are the principal differences.
• Several forms are cognates in Northern Philippine languages(e.g.
Kapampangan)
ire ‘they’ might be from *qi+da (KAPAMPANGAN ila,PANGASINAN,
GADDANG, IBANAG ira)
The most striking comparison can be made between Inati and Itbayaten or
Ivatan.
Ivatan Inati
yakin ‘I’ (ki)yakan ‘mine’, ‘to me’
yamin ‘our’ (ki)yamin ‘our’, ‘to us’
yatin ‘we’ (ki)yatin ‘our’, ‘to us’
• This serves to illustrate that Inete retained conservative features and does not
share in certain innovations that are characteristic of the Central Philippine
Languages.
Syntax
Relationship of Phrase Markers Kay, Ki and Ini
• Kay marks the phrase that is singled out for a special semantic-role
emphasis
Ex:
Kay tawo igpangayam ki itok ki bokid ini may tonod.
The man hunts lizards in the mountain with a (bow and) arrow.
• Ki marks out the other semantic-role phrases that are not singled out
for emphasis.
• Ini functions as a ligature which links the man with his instrument, the
bow and arrow, may indicating possession.
• Kay is also an equational linker. It functions like Tagalog ay.
Si Pedro ay mataas.
I Pedro kay mataas.
• Sogodnin has an o marker in place of Inete kay.
• Negative Phrase Marker it
It is used only after negatives as it is in Aklanon and Kinaray-a.
however, in those languages it is also used as an indefinitive
common noun marker.
Sogodnin uses it as its marker while Inete employs ki.
• Ta Dimunitive
This prefix is found in some words as a dimunitive.
Ex: ta-anak ‘child’ tamanok ‘chick’
An added Inati innovation occurs with pluralization of ta-forms:
ma- is infixed.
Ex: ta-anak ‘child’ ta-ma-anak ‘children’
• Verbal Affixes
Inati uses the suffix –in instead of Bisayan –on. This affects a
number of verbal forms and no Bisayan language has an –in suffix
like Inati.
another distinguishing factor is the absence of Proto Central
Philippine –a- after the prefixes *mag-, *nag-, and *pag-. This is one
criterion of grouping these languages according to Zorc.
Conclusion:
 Inati is a separate language, distinct from any
other speech variety on Panay.
 It does not belong to the Bisayan subgroup of
languages.
 It is beyond lexicostatistical solution owing to a
large number of innovations, and heavy loan
overlays from Bisayan, Spanish and even some
English.
 inati shows a unique sound correspondence for
the proto-Austronesian phoneme *R which is
not found in any other Philippine language both
medial and final position, and indeed is rare for
any of the Austronesian languages.
Survival Factors:
1.) Panay Ati have maintained distinct communities
throughout time where Inati is spoken as the primary
language. Racial, socio-economic and cultural factors
have all contributed to the maintenance of strong
ethnic boundaries separating Ati from lowland
communities.
2.) Ati have maintained communication between
communities throughout the centuries.certainly, the
Ati were not stationary, isolated communities without
contact with each other.
3.) the preservation of the language could also be
accounted to the survival of the Ati themselves. They
value large families and they even adopt if needed.
.
Presently,
Sogodnin (Malay Ati
dialect) is nearly extinct.
Inati(Barotac Viejo Nagpana)
is the prestige dialect