Why do Phillipino [crossed out and corrected to Filipino by someone else] people have last names that sound Hispanic, like Hernandez, for example?
[in the same pen as the spelling correction:] A: B/c the Phillipines was once a Spanish colony and their people “got busy.” [3355B]

As the purple-pen person suggests, they were for a long time a Spanish colony. The Spanish introduced (compelled?) the Spanish naming system on the native populace (perhaps this went hand-in-hand with their conversion to Catholicism), but the language itself never seemed to get a foothold.

 

2 Responses to Filipino names

  1. Anonymous says:

    Spanish gave Filipinos family names. Civil registration system and Catholicism were introduced by the Spanish. It must be for ease of governance and their convenience that they also introduced family names.

    It is not as easy to pass language from one family generation to another as a family name. That should explain enough about the spanish languange being outlived by spanish family names.

    After the Spanish colonization of the Philippines, the Americans came, then the Japanese and again the Americans. Philippine schools until recently included the Spanish Languange as part of the curriculum. Most of the literatures used in learning though are in English. For a country with hundreds of local dialects, another languange like Spanish is forgettable. I wish Spanish languange gained foothold and became one of the country’s languanges but i is difficult to imagine how can one language without a regional origin in the country outlive serveral generations. I am from the Philippines and I am fluent in four native dialects. Tagalog or Filipino is a national language and known to most. My father is from the island of Iloilo which uses Ilonggo dialect. I talk to my relatives in the father side using this language. My mother is from the Bicol region where a different dialect — Bicol — is used. I use the language in communicating with mother’s kin. Finally, I grew up and went to school where a significant member of the population uses Cebuano– the language from Cebu and neighboring locality. Even assuming that I learn Spanish in school, i have no avenue to use it on a every day basis.. thus i’d forget.

    Had it been the Chinese that colonized the Philippines for the same lenght of time that the Spanish did, the Chinese languange will surely become popular since there are a lot of traders and communities in the country to date where the population are predominantly of Chinese origins. I don’t think there is a single Filipino who have not interacted with Chinese.

    Today, between learning Spanish or Chinese, learning Chinese language will make a whole lot more of sense to me.

  2. Wow, I guess I’ve got nothing more to say! Thanks for the details.