Why are Filipino names Spanish?

Most Filipinos have Spanish names. The Spaniards came to the Philippines in 1521 and introduced Christianity, which led to culture being heavily influenced by theirs. They also brought their language with them, as well as customs such as Catholicism and European-style clothing. 

In addition, many of us are named after Catholic saints or other important figures from history who were either Hispanic or had a Spanish last name (e.g., Jose Rizal). But even though we’ve been using these names for centuries now, most people don’t know why Filipino names are mostly Spanish in origin! So let’s take a look at some reasons why this is the case:

The most common explanation is that when the Spanish came to the Philippines, they ruled and wrote down names to impose Christianity on the native population.

Another theory is that Spanish explorers discovered Filipinos living next to Borneo. The term “Manila” in Tagalog refers to a tree known for its long leaves. They then hypothesized that this was where Manila was. From there, scholars have speculated that other places such as Malaysia are located nearby too. It is also said that these countries were named after their rice crops because they had similar names- Malaysia (rice), Vietnam (reed), and Moros (dark).

Are all Filipino last names Spanish?

Are all Filipino last names Spanish?

Not all Filipino last names are Spanish, although most of them do have Spanish roots. Spanish is one of the two languages used by Filipinos. The other five acknowledged official languages are English, Filipino (a standardized version of Tagalog), Pilipino/Taglish (a mix of Tagalog and English), Cebuano, and Ilocano.

What are the words for countries in Filipino? How do they sound like?

Malaysia (Malay–Maharlika), Vietnam (Bisaya or Visaya), Cuba (Kuba, not pronounced similar to Kubo from Samurai Jack).  

Note: Maharlika is the name of a famous Filipino hero. Maharlika is what the Americans called the Philippines during their occupation between 1898 – 1946. The term “Maharlika” was declared by President Manuel L. Quezon as the national anthem for the Commonwealth of the Philippines in 1935. It later became the official national anthem upon independence, and after Republic Act № 304 took effect. Maharlika is a Tagalog word for “noble,” It has nothing to do with the Malay race, contrary to popular belief.

Why do Filipinos write both their father’s and mother’s names?

Each surname has a patronymic form, the father’s name with an added “-ng” or “-g.” Filipinos usually refer to themselves by their first name accompanied by their father’s last – that is why surnames are very important in Filipino culture. Again, this practice is due to Spanish influence.

Indio is a Spanish word meaning native or indigenous, but it has evolved into an ethnic slur for people of Filipino descent in certain English-speaking countries. However, this term was commonly used by Filipinos even before the arrival of the Spaniards. The original meaning of Indio is “a person,” and it was later used to describe first Filipino inhabitants and then the Spanish.

Amerikano is another word of Spanish origin being a rendering of Americano—American person. The ending “-kano” derives from “kanò,” which means ‘person’ in Cebuano (Bisaya). The term is now used to refer to both the Spanish and American peoples.

In 1907, the Philippine Commission enacted Act No. 2309, which prohibited the change of name of Filipino citizens without permission from the government. This law was repealed on June 19, 1957, by Republic Act No. 1515, approved on May 31, 1957, and took effect on July 4, 1957.

“Filipino” is not just one language.

In fact, it is a mix of several languages and has influenced other languages in the Pacific Rim (Tagalog vocabulary has been incorporated into Japanese).

This is why Filipino names are Spanish, among many reasons! When the Spaniards arrived in the 16 th century, they were naming people after saints. 

They called the natives “Indios” because it was easier to pronounce than the native term “Aetas.” Certain towns and cities like Manila, Cebu, Iloilo, etc., came from Spanish Filipino words. 

Some words like “Amor” and my name, “Johanna,” have not changed into Filipino.

It’s exciting to note that even though Spain colonized the Philippines for almost 4 centuries, Spanish is not a commonly spoken language (except in Zamboanga Del Norte, where they talk to Chavacano) because the Americans suppressed it.

Why are some Filipino words Spanish?

Jeepney filipinos

The Philippines used to be a Spanish colony, so many words come from the Spanish language. It was called Filipinas during the Spanish colonial period. It started in 1565 and ended in 1898 when they were defeated by the America-Filipino troops led by General McArthur in the Battle of Manila Bay.

Why are Filipinos forced to learn English if we’re an independent nation?

There are many reasons why Filipino students learn English in school. The most obvious is that the Philippines benefited from American colonization because they introduced many things to our countries, such as their language, culture, and education system.

Why did the Spanish come to the Philippines?

The Spanish came to the Philippines for many reasons. The most prevalent was that they sought refuge in Manila Bay, which had a natural deep harbor and could be accessed through an existing route from Mexico, their homeland at the time. They also hoped to find gold and other riches because of legends of hidden treasures on islands near Palawan Island’s west coast. Of course, this didn’t work out very well as these rumors weren’t true, but it did bring Spain closer to shopping centers like Hong Kong!

How did Spain colonize the Philippines?

While it is true that they were forced to become Catholics under Spanish rule, Filipinos still primarily practiced their own religions and beliefs in freedom. They were required to pay taxes to Spain while also keeping their right to independence. The Spanish used a bureaucratic system, allowing the Philippines to keep their own local governments while being ruled as a colony.

How were the Philippines handed over to America?

While Spain had promised independence in 1898, they were forced to break their word when they waged war against America. By 1901, it had become an official territory of the United States but still had American control. It was without voting rights in government until 1946.

Originally posted on August 9, 2021 @ 3:23 pm

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As a lifelong traveler and founder of lovefortraveling.com, I, Alex Deidda, have always been driven by my passion for exploring new places and cultures.

Throughout the years, I have had the opportunity to live in various countries, each offering unique perspectives and experiences.

My love for traveling led me to create lovefortraveling.com, a website and blog dedicated to helping people plan their trips.

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