Building Words in Bisaya Part 2


This is the second of a series on vocabulary building. Here we look into deriving words from adjective roots. Adjectives are words which describe nouns, i.e., things, places, people, events, etc. In Bisaya, many words are derived from roots classified as adjectives.

Let’s start with the adjective “dako” (big).

1. Dakô ang balay. (The house is big.)

2. Dakòdakô ang balay. (The house is somewhat big.)

3. Unsa kadakô ang balay? (How big is the house?).

4. Kinsay inyong dakodakò? (Who’s the leader of your group?)

5. Kini ang kinadak-an. (This is the biggest.)

6. Nagkadakô ang problema. (The problem is getting bigger.)

7. Gipadakô sila sa ilang lola. (They were raised by their grandmother.)

Another adjective is “mahál (dear, expensive, costly, valuable).

8. Mahál ang isda karon. (Fish is expensive now.)

9. Mahalón ang imong sinina. (Your dress is expensive.)

10. Ang Iyang Kamahalan (His/Her Excellency)

11. Pagkamahál! (How expensive!)

12. Gimahál ko ikaw. (I cherish you)

13. Mahál kong Nanay. . . (My dear Mother)

14. Ang kinamahalan (the most expensive)

15. Kanimo nagmahál (Lovingly yours)

For our final adjective for this segment, “bug-at” (heavy).

16. Bug-at kaayo ang inyong mga libro. (Your books are very heavy.)

17. Nagkabug-at ang among palas-anon. (Our burden is getting heavier.)

18. Mobug-at ra kanâ unya. (That will become heavy later.)

19. Unsa kabug-at ang karga? (How heavy is the cargo?)

20. Mga usa ka tonelada ang kabug-aton niana. (The weight of that is about one ton)


a. Simple adjectives: dakô; mahál; bug-at

b. Reduplication of the adjective root: dakòdakô -connotes the attribute of the adjective to a lesser degree.

c. Ka- + adjective root: kadakô; kamahál, kabug-at = Noun

d. Pagka- + adjective = Intensive adjective

e. Kina- + adjetive + -an = Superlative adjective

Maayong pagtuon!


Source by Jessie Grace Rubrico