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Updated: 6/21/2020


Austronesian Comparative Dictionary


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dam    dan    dar    dea    deb    dec    def    del    der    des    dev    dia    dic    dif    dip    dir    dis    div    diz    do    doc    dol    don    doo    dou    dov    dra    dre    dri    dru    dry    duc    dul    dun    dut    dye    

(Dempwolff: *ke(rR)is ‘dagger’)


Tagalog kálissword, sabre
Cebuano káliskind of pointed sword, around 18-20 inches long, with serrations near the handle
Maranao karissword
Ngaju Dayak karisa kind of dagger 10-15 inches in length, with double cutting edges, broad at the handle and sharply pointed
Malay kəristhe well-known Malayan dagger; “kris”. “kriss” or “crease”
Toba Batak horisdagger (said to be from Malay)
Sundanese kəriskris, ceremonial dagger
Old Javanese kəris ~ krisa particular kind of dagger
Javanese keriskris (ceremonial dagger)
  keris-anto wear a kris; imitation kris (e.g. a toy; a shadow-play prop)
Balinese keriskris, ceremonial dagger
Sasak kəriskris, ceremonial dagger
Tontemboan kirisdagger

Borrowing from either Javanese or Malay. Dempwolff (1938) reconstructed *ke(rR)is ‘dagger’.


Ilokano dágadagger
Bikol dágaknife, dagger
  mag-dágato stab with a dagger


Tagalog punyálponiard; dagger
Bikol punyáldagger
  mag-punyálto stab with a dagger
Agutaynen poniala machete with a sharply pointed end
Cebuano puniyáldagger; stab someone or something with a dagger
Tiruray funiyala kind of dagger

From Spanish puñal ‘dagger, poniard’.

(Dempwolff: *leŋas ‘damp, moist’)

damp, moist

Tagalog laŋáswash off
Malagasy lenamoist, wet
Malay mə-ləŋasbecome clammy or moist (of a metal or sugary surface, of the body, etc.)

I cannot find Tagalog laŋás in any modern dictionary, and the rest of this comparison is best considered a loan distribution. Dempwolff (1938) reconstructed Uraustronesisch *leŋas ‘damp, moist’.

(Dempwolff: *tari ‘to dance’)


Ngaju Dayak tarihovering, of birds with outspread wings
  ma-narito hover
Iban taridancing, esp. with graceful arm movements
Malay taridancing; generic for all dance movements

Borrowing from Malay. Dempwolff (1938) also included Malagasy tari ‘a second drum’, and based on the Malagasy, Ngaju Dayak and Malay forms proposed “Uraustronesisch’ *tari ‘to dance’. However, this comparison has an extremely limited geographical distribution, appearing only in Malay and languages that are known to have borrowed heavily from it.

dart, javelin

Tagalog sulígiɁdart, small spear or lance
Iban seligiwooden javelin, spear of hardened bamboo or palm; crocodile ‘hook’
  ñeligiraging, in turmoil
Malay səligiwooden dart or javelin
Toba Batak suligibamboo lance
Sundanese suligikind of spear or javelin
Old Javanese suligia kind of spear, javelin
  a-nuligito throw the suligi
Balinese suligia mace or club of wood or iron, having a sharp point

Also Malay, Minangkabau suligi ‘dart, small spear or lance’. The final glottal stop in Tagalog shows that it is most likely a borrowing from Malay, an interpretation that may well apply to most of the other forms cited here as well.

dam    dan    dar    dea    deb    dec    def    del    der    des    dev    dia    dic    dif    dip    dir    dis    div    diz    do    doc    dol    don    doo    dou    dov    dra    dre    dri    dru    dry    duc    dul    dun    dut    dye    


deadfall trap

PAty *daŋartrap
Thao danarlarge deadfall log trap traditionally used to catch wild pig and barking deer

Thao danar is a loan, possibly from Atayal or Bunun, although lexicographic resources for the latter language are inadequate to determine the matter with certainty.

deadline, time limit

Ilokano taníŋlimit; deadline
Sambal (Botolan) i-tániŋto set a date
Tagalog tániŋlimit; fixed time; time limit; to fix a time limit for a certain work
Aklanon taníŋlimit (to life); predestination
Agutaynen taniŋa certain amount of time left to live; for one’s life to be limited, have a limit or end point

(Dempwolff: *tagiq ‘dun someone for collection of a debt’)

debt:   dunning to collect a debt

Ngaju Dayak tagihdunning, making demands for repayment of a debt
Malagasy tákireclamation, dunning, pursuit (used primarily of debts)
Iban tagihimportune, press for, dun for debt
Malay tagehto importune; to press (of dunning a man for debt); also of a craving that gives a man no peace until he satisfies it
Sundanese tagihto dun, demand repayment of a debt
Old Javanese tagihto claim, demand
  t<um>agih-akənto demand repayment on something; inflict the punishment for; to demand the payment of
Javanese ka-tagih-anaddicted to
  pa-tagih-anwritten acknowledgement of indebtedness
  tagih-anpayment on/of a debt
Balinese tagihask for, demand; admonish, exhort; threated; be addicted to (drugs, drink)
Sasak tagi(h)to dun for repayment of a debt

Borrowing from Malay. Dempwolff (1938) reconstructed ‘Uraustronesisch’ *tagiq ‘dun someone for collection of a debt’.

deceit, trickery, fraud

Tagalog dáyaʔdeceit; fraud; dishonest dealing; dodge; a trick to cheat or deceive
  mag-dáyaʔto cheat, defraud
Bikol dáyaʔdeceit, guile
  mag-dáyaʔto cheat, dupe, fool
Hanunóo dáyaʔsorcery; deceit, fraud
  mag-dáyaʔto cheat, defraud
Agutaynen mag-dayato cheat in a game; to cheat a person
Hiligaynon dáyaʔdeceit, trick, dishonesty
  mag-dáyaʔto trick, to cheat, to deceive
Malay dayaartifice, dodge, way --- usually a tricky way ---of doing something

Borrowing from Malay into Tagalog, and then from Tagalog into Hanunóo, and perhaps other languages.

deceive:   lie, deceive

Tagalog buhóŋsly, cunning, deceitful; villain
Malay bohoŋlying; untruth; intentional misstatement
Sundanese bohoŋto lie, tell lies

Borrowing from Malay.

deceive:   lie, deceive

Tagalog búlaʔfib, untruth
  buláʔ-anfibbing, untruthful
Iban bulaʔlying, false, tell a lie
Malay bolakgoing back on one's word; prevarication

Borrowing from Malay.

(Dempwolff: *tipu ‘deceit’)


Ngaju Dayak tipufraud, deceit
Malay tipufraud; to deceive; cheating by misrepresentation
Sundanese tipuruse, trick, deception

Borrowing from Malay. Dempwolff (1938) reconstructed ‘Uraustronesisch’ *tipu ‘deceit’ (Betrug).

(Dempwolff: *hias)

decoration, jewelry

Tagalog hiásgem, precious stone; jewelry; ornament, decoration
Aklanon hiásjewels, treasures
Hiligaynon hiásprecious stone, gem
Cebuano híasgood qualities, virtues not inherent in something pa-hias something used to make a woman beautiful; use jewelry or make-up
Malay hiasembellishment
  mandi ber-hiasceremonial bathing and decking out of a bride for her wedding
  men-hias-ito beautify
Acehnese hiehdecorate; ornament
Lampung hiasdecorated

Borrowing. The Philippine reflexes point to *h-, but the western Indonesian reflexes to *q-. Panganiban (1966) suggests that Tagalog hiás derives from Spanish joyas. If so, this form has spread from the Philippines into western Indonesia, like Malay biawas 'guava', and a few other words.

deferentially:   sit deferentially

Bikol mag-sílaʔto sit with the legs crossed at the thighs
Iban dudok be-silasit kneeling (on knees and feet together); sit deferentially, or cross-legged(?)
Malay dudok ber-silato sit in the proper, deferential way
Sundanese silasit with the legs crossed under the body
Old Javanese śīlamoral character, action, conduct; good conduct, good character (Sanskrit: practice, conduct, disposition, charact er, good conduct, morality, piety, virtue)
Javanese sila(to sit) cross-legged
Balinese silasit like an ascetic; sit properly, with good manners; sit in the proper position before a superior
  sila napeksit in the usual way, with each foot under the opposite thigh
  sila sisihsit with the left foot against the right knee
Sasak bə-silasit with the legs crossed

Several of these forms, including at least those in Bikol and Iban, are likely Malay loans, ultimately from Sanskrit.

(Dempwolff: *cemeD ‘impure’)

defiled, ritually polluted, ceremonially unclean

Ngaju Dayak samara sickness that comes about because one has eaten something that is prohibited or taboo; soiled, defiled, polluted
Malay cemardirt; polution. Of dirty bits of road; a vile disposition; days of uncleanness (hari cemar kain ‘menstrual period’)
Toba Batak somorunwilling, reluctant
  anak somor-somora bad son who causes grief to his parents
  imbulu somor-somorhair on the human body (or horses) which shows that the possessor is unworthy; in general: unworthy
Sundanese cemerlose one’s power, influence or purity; become ordinary or impure
Old Javanese a-cemerunclean, foul, low
  a-nemer-ito defile
  c<um>emer-ito defile
Javanese cemersoggy, messy, muddy
  c/r/emedto tell dirty stories; to talk obscenely or coarsely
Balinese cemerceremonially unclean
  ñemer-into defile, make ritually unclean
Sasak cemerfoul, impure; damp, moist; unsafe (because of sorcery)
Wayan somobe dyed black or brown (using traditional dyes made from black mud or leaves); black or brown dye
  somo-ni ~ somo-tidye something, stain something black or brown; weave a mat with dyed strips
Fijian somostained, of sinnet
  somo-tato stain sinnet black, generally by burying it in black earth or mangrove mud
  somo-somo-a ~ somo-somo-tadirty
  taka-somosomo-takato dirty, blacken with earth
Samoan somogum (secreted by the eyes, etc.)
  somo-abe gummy

Dempwolff reconstructed *cemeD ‘impure’, but there is little evidence for such a proto-form outside of Malay, Javanese and languages that have borrowed from either or both of these. The cognation of the Toba Batak form with the others appears doubtful, and the proposed connection of the Oceanic forms to these is completely unconvincing, making this comparison partly attributable to borrowing and partly to chance. The evidence for *-D was based entirely on the second Javanese form, which contains an unexplained stem-internal /r/.


Casiguran Dumagat antálato be slowed down in a fall from a height (an in opening a parachute when falling from an airplane, or to fall from a tree, but hitting several branches on the way down, thus slowing one’s fall)
Ayta Abellan antalato be delayed by a hindrance
Tagalog antaladelay; procrastination; hindrance

Borrowing from Tagalog.

delicacy:   rice delicacy

Bahasa Indonesia burasdelicacy made of rice and soft coconut pulp wrapped in a banana leaf
Mandar burasdelicacy made of rice and soft coconut pulp wrapped in a banana leaf
Makassarese burasaʔkind of rice croquette made of steamed rice mixed with boiled coconut cream which is then wrapped in a banana leaf, tightly bound and cooked
Bimanese βurarice which is wrapped in a young banana leaf and cooked

Borrowing from Malay.

(Dempwolff: *sindiR ‘mockery, ridicule’)

derision:   ridicule, derision

Kadazan Dusun sindiɁa type of poetry/music that has hidden meaning
Ngaju Dayak sindirmockery, ridicule, derision
  ha-sindirmock one another
Iban sindirmake insinuations, banter or flirt (in riddles)
Malay sindirteasing; chaff by innuendo; banter
Toba Batak sindirpetty matter over which one becomes vexed; cause of a quarrel
Sundanese sindirveiled expression; indirect or figurative expression
Old Javanese sinḍiallusion, innuendo
  a-ninḍito allude to, make allusions to, hint at, intimate
Javanese sinḍén (< *sindi-an)sing to the accompaniment of the gamelan music [of female singers]
Sasak sindirallude to something, hint at

Based on data from Toba Batak, Javanese, Malay and Ngaju Dayak, Dempwolff (1938) proposed *sindiR ‘mockery, ridicule’. However, the original meaning of this term appears to have been closer to that of teasing in a flirtatious manner than to mockery or ridicule. The Kadazan Dusun form is irregular, and it is very difficult to exclude the possibility of a borrowing distribution for the remaining forms.

desire, want

Iban iŋincraving, long for, covet
Malay iŋinintense longing; temporary craving
Toba Batak eŋenpester someone repeatedly with requests
Old Javanese iŋinlong for (to possess), desirous, avid, filled with desire or love

Probably an innovation in Proto-Malayic, later borrowed into Toba Batak and Old Javanese from Malay.


Maranao binasadestroy, damage, break
Tiruray binasadestroy, damage something
Malay binasadestruction, ruin -- whether physical, moral or financial
Acehnese binasadestroyed, spoilt, devastated, annihilated
Simalur binasadamaged, devastated
Karo Batak binasabe leveled to the ground
Sundanese binasaperished, destroyed
Old Javanese wina sautterly lost, annihilated, disappeared, etc.
Sangir ma-winasabe lost, corrupted
Buginese binasadestroyed
Wolio ɓinasedestroyed, smashed, ruined, cancelled, nullified

Borrowing, ultimately from Sanskrit.

devoted:   loyal, faithful, devoted

Sambal (Botolan) tapátfaithful, honest, sincere
Tagalog ma-tapátdevoted; loyal; faithful; sincere; genuine; real; honest
Cebuano tapátto be true and loyal to someone; resolve oneself to reform; sincere

The Botolan Sambal form is assumed to be a Tagalog loan.

dam    dan    dar    dea    deb    dec    def    del    der    des    dev    dia    dic    dif    dip    dir    dis    div    diz    do    doc    dol    don    doo    dou    dov    dra    dre    dri    dru    dry    duc    dul    dun    dut    dye    



Maranao intanopal
Kayan itandiamond
Ngaju Dayak hintandiamond
Malay intandiamond
Toba Batak intangemstone
Sundanese intengemstone
Old Javanese hintendiamond
Balinese intendiamond
Sangir intaŋgemstone
Mandar ittaŋdiamond
Makassarese intaŋdiamond
Wolio intadiamond
Bimanese intadiamond
Hawu itadiamond
Buli intandiamond

Borrowing. A widespread loanword which probably passed from Old Javanese to Malay, where it underwent two changes: 1. *e to last-syllable //a//, and 2. loss of initial //h// (from *q-). In this form (*intan) it was then carried by Malay traders to Borneo, the southern Philippines, and various parts of central and eastern Indonesia.


Ilokano dádodie, dice
  ag-dádoto play dice, to throw the dice
Tagalog dádodice (used in gambling)
Bikol dádosdice

From Spanish dado ‘die, dice’.


Maranao bidaʔdifferentiate; different
Malay bédadistinction, difference
Acehnese bidadifference, distinction
Balinese bédadifferent; difference
Sangir bidaʔdifference, distinction

Borrowing, ultimately from Sanskrit.

difficulty:   trouble, worry, difficulty

Ngaju Dayak susahdifficult, tiring (Malay)
  susah ataimiserable, troubled
  ka-susahwearisome, tiring
  ma-ñusahcause trouble, make difficulties for
Banjarese susahpoor
Iban tusahtroubled, anxious, sad
  nusahto trouble, cause sadness or worry
Malay susahuneasy; disquieted; difficult
  susah hatidisquiet of mind; worry
  ke-susah-anto experience trouble
Acehnese susahtrouble, burden, distress, worry, grief, adversity
Karo Batak susah ~ suhsahtrouble, worry, difficulty
  ke-susah-enbe in difficult straits; difficulty
Toba Batak susaburden, worry, concern, care, sorrow (Malay)
  ma-nusa-ito cause trouble or worry for someone
  ha-susa-anburden, trouble
Sundanese susahtrouble, anxiety, worry; burden; adversity; distress, grief, sorrow; anxious, worried, sorrowful
Old Javanese susahdisturbed, in disorder, in confusion, stirred
  a-nusahto disturb, confuse, stir up, rouse, move
Javanese susahsad
  ñusahto sadden, cause sorrow for
  ke-susah-ansorrow, grief, trouble

Dempwolff (1938) posited this form as ‘Uraustronesisch’, but its distribution is restricted to Malay and other languages of western Indonesia that have borrowed from Malay. It is therefore best considered a Proto-Malayic innovation that has been borrowed over much of the area that it is found, and is indicated as such in at least two of the sources cited here. In addition, Dempwolff included Malagasy usa ‘cowardly, timid, faint-hearted; feeble, weak’ in his comparison, but this appears to be unrelated.

dipper, scoop (water)

Mapun gayuŋany pail, dipper, or container used for drawing water or other liquids
Tausug gayuŋa small vessel made of coconut shell, bamboo or tin, used to scoop up water
Malay gayoŋa rude ladle made of a bowl of coconut shell and a handle; any small dipper, such as an empty can

Borrowing from Malay.

(Dempwolff: *a(r)aq 'direction')


Malay arahdirection
Karo Batak arahside
Sundanese ŋ-arahto mean, intend, strive
Old Javanese arahexact position or direction
Javanese arahdirection

Wilkinson (1959) lists Malay arah as an Arabic loan, although it is not included by Jones (1978), and its occurrence in Old Javanese independently raises questions about this interpretation. I treat it here simply as a late innovation in western Indonesia.

disciple, follower

Ilokano alágadmodel, example, guide, pattern; standard
  alagád-ento imitate, copy; reproduce; follow the rules
Casiguran Dumagat alagáddisciple, helper, companion (of a high ranking person)
Tagalog alagádfollower; disciple; apostle; minister; helper; public servant
Binukid alagadone who serves (as an official, church leader, etc.); employee; to serve; to work as an employee

Probably a Tagalog loan distribution.

discussion:   speak, discussion

Maranao bitiaraspeak, talk; marriage feast
Manobo (Western Bukidnon) bitiyaradiscussion; to discuss
Kenyah bisaraʔtrial; juridical proceeding
Kayan besaraʔcourt, tribunal
Ngaju Dayak bacara/basaracourt case brought before a judge
Iban bicaralawsuit, case
Malay bicaradeliberation, discussion; discourse; legal proceeding; court-case; concern, business
Acehnese bicaraadvice, counsel; deliberation, discussion; consultation; opinion, intention; judgment
Simalur bisarocunning, ruse, trick; acumen, craftiness
Karo Batak bicarahabit, custom, usage, customary law; in case, in the event that
Dairi-Pakpak Batak bincararegulations, rules that must be obeyed or followed
Toba Batak bisaralawsuit, legal action; controversial matter; cause of war
Sundanese bicaraadvice, counsel
  gedoŋ bicaratown hall, meeting place for public discussions
Old Javanese a-wicārato discuss, talk about, have a talk
  wicāradeliberation, discussion
Javanese bicara, wicaraspeech; conversation
  micarato speak, discuss
Sangir bisaraconversation, talk, discussion
Gorontalo bisa-bisalato speak, give a speech
Banggai bisarato speak; speech; language
  mo-bisara-konto discuss, talk over
Bare'e bisaraconversation; subject of discussion
  mo-bisarato talk, speak
Tae' bisara-italk about something, discuss something
  maʔ-bisarato speak, deliberate over
  bisaraword; reason; subject of discussion; conversation
Buginese bicaratalk, speak
Makassarese aʔ-bicarato speak, talk; administer justice, adjudicate
  bicaraconversation, talk; judicial decision; lawsuit; quarrel; matter, affair; arranged so that
Wolio bitaraadministration of justice, judiciary, legal case, lawsuit
Komodo bicaraviceroy
Rembong bisarato speak; (of a ruler) to speak
Asilulu bicaraengage in legal disputes
Buruese fisarato speak
  fisara-tspeech, words
Bimanese ɓicaraspokesperson; affair, official matter
Manggarai bicaraadministrator of justice
Soboyo basara, bisarato speak, especially to bring a matter before the chiefs
Buli bicaradeliberate, discuss, consider

Borrowing, ultimately from Sanskrit. The wide distribution of this loanword, its semantic variability and the degree to which it has become integrated into the morphology of the languages which have borrowed it give some idea of how difficult it can be to identify native language material (e.g. from Malay) which diffused prior to the period of western contact.

disease:   skin disease

Maranao bodokskin on the head which is scaly, skin lesion
Manobo (Western Bukidnon) buzukskin disease on the scalp which forms large scabby areas
Malay bodokleprosy in its early stage
Old Javanese wuḍugleprosy
Javanese buḍug-enhave/get leprosy

Malay bodok is assumed to be a loan from Javanese. The similarity of the Philippine forms to those in western Indonesia is attributed to chance.

dish:   plate dish

Ibatan piŋgana plate
Ilokano piŋgánplate
  ag-piŋgánto use a plate
  i-piŋgánto put on a plate
  pag-piŋgan-ánto use as a plate
Isneg piŋgána kind of white xúsi jar (earthenware jar of Chinese origin); a plate
Casiguran Dumagat péŋgantin plate; to take plates along
Kapampangan píŋgandishes
Tagalog piŋgándish; plate
  pá-miŋgan-anrack or shelf for plates and other kitchen utensils
  piŋgan-ana set of plates or dishes
Bikol piŋgána plate
  pi-piŋgan-áncupboard, pantry
Hanunóo piŋgándish, plate, usually of porcelain
Maranao piŋganplate, China
Tausug piŋgana bowl, concave container for food
Kadazan Dusun piŋganplate
Ida'an begak piŋganplate
Lun Dayeh bigana dish, plate
Kelabit biganplate, dish
Kayan pigencolored border of plate or cup
Kiput pikaanplate
Iban piŋgaiChina plate or dish, usually large and valued
Malay piŋganplate, usually of porcelain or earthware plates
Karo Batak piŋganplate, dish, porcelain
Toba Batak piŋganplate
Sundanese piŋgana cup, bowl, or dish with a foot
Old Javanese piŋgana deep bowl
Javanese piŋganbowl or basin used for food preparation
Balinese piŋgandeep bowl, cauldron
Sasak piŋgənimported plate
Tae' pindanplate, dish of earthenware or porcelain
Tetun bikanplate
Yamdena mbinanplate, earthenware
Leti piknaplate
Asilulu pikalplate, crockery
Buruese piganplatter

Borrowing from Malay, ultimately from Persian via Tamil. This loanword corresponds roughly to the area of Malay cultural influence immediately prior to the arrival of European colonizers.

dish:   plate, dish

Malay piriŋshallow-rimmed platter or plate (usually of metal)
Buli piriŋplate

Borrowing from Malay.

dish:   spicy condiment side dish with rice

Ngaju Dayak sambalcondiment with rice, various fruits, vegetables, etc., raw or cooked, thoroughly mixed with salt and Spanish pepper
  ma-ñambalmake something into this condiment
Malay sambalcondiment eaten with curry (generic for peppers, pickles, grated coconut or pineapple, salt fish, fish roe, very salted eggs, very acid sliced fruits and other condiments eaten cold to give additional flavor to the curry and rice)
Acehnese sambayvarious finely chopped leaves mixed with Spanish pepper, roasted coconut, salt, etc. (a kind of condiment)
Toba Batak sambalpungent side-dish with rice
Sundanese sambalcondiment eaten with rice (as Spanish pepper)
Old Javanese sambəla hot condiment
  s<in>ambəl-anto supply with a hot condiment
Javanese sambelhot spicy sauce or paste
  ñambelto make ingredients into a hot spicy sauce or paste
Balinese sambala very frequently used sauce (green pepper, fish-paste, and lemon juice)
Sasak sambəlspices eaten with rice

Apparently an innovation in Old Javanese that was borrowed by Malay and subsequently disseminated among languages in western Indonesia that were in frequent contact with Malay traders.


Bahasa Indonesia bubardisperse, scatter (of people who have been gathered in one place)
Lampung bubaxdispersed
Old Javanese bubarscattered, dispersed, broken up
Javanese bubardisperse (as bees swarming out of a hive, a meeting breaking up)
Mandar bubardisperse, scatter (as people fleeing a village)
Makassarese bubaraʔdisperse, break up (of a meeting, a crowd being dispersed by police, etc.)
Rembong bubardisperse, break up

Borrowing from Malay or Javanese

(Dempwolff: *arak)

distilled:   alcohol, distilled liquor

Ilokano árakwhisky, gin, whisky, etc. The fermented juice of grapes and any alcoholic beverage obtained by distillation
Bontok ʔálakstore bought hard liquor, as gin
Kankanaey álakwine, gin, whisky; alcohol
Casiguran Dumagat alákwine
Pangasinan álakliquor
Kapampangan álakliquor
Tagalog álakwine, liquor; distillate, alcohol
Bikol árakwhiskey, liquor, booze; wine
Hanunóo ʔálakwine, refering to bottled wine of various commercial brands; known from contact with lowland people; the term does not apply specifically to such native fermented beverages as intús
Aklanon áeakto distil (any alcohol or alcoholic beverage)
Hiligaynon álakhard drink, liquor
Cebuano álakliquor, strong alcoholic beverage
Tiruray ʔarakgeneral term for a distilled alcoholic beverage
Kadazan Dusun t-alakarrack
Kelabit arakthe spirit distilled from rice wine
Ngaju Dayak arakdistilled liquor
Malagasy árakarum (Provincial)
Iban arakarrack, rice spirit, distilled from a fermented mash
Moken ælapalcohol
Malay arakarrack, distilled alcoholic liquor
Sundanese arak-arak-anhold a drinking party
Old Javanese arakarrack, a distilled alcoholic liquor
Javanese arakalcoholic beverage made by allowing liquid to ferment
Balinese arakspirit (drink)
Sasak arakarrack. On Lombok four kinds are known: a. beras (from rice), a. duntal (from lontar palm), a. nao (from sugar palm), a n-iur (from coconut palm)
Chamorro arakdistilled liquor made from fermented coconut sap
Bimanese aradistilled liquor, rice wine
Manggarai aragin, rice wine
Rembong arakgin
Kambera arakuhard liquor
Leti arkaarrack
Wetan arkaarrack, and strong liquor in general
Kei arakgin distilled from sago pith
Ujir arekMalay-introduced rice wine

Borrowing, ultimately from Arabic. Dempwolff treated this form as native, but Jones (1978) regards it as a borrowing of Arabic ʔaraq 'strong drink'. This interpretation is supported by the initial consonant of Wolio ʔara 'arrack, brandy (made from sago juice, or the nectar of nipah-palm blossom)', and by numerous irregularities in the sound correspondences, although the appearance of forms of the word in Old Javanese and Malagasy is in need of further study. Such Philippine languages as Casiguran Dumagat, Kapampangan, Hanunóo, and Aklanon appear to have acquired the word through TAGA, but Ilokano and Bikol evidently acquired it directly from speakers of Malay. Throughout much of eastern Indonesia the word appears to have been borrowed through the mediation of Malay, and the same may be true of Chamorro arak, although Ilokano árak is another plausible source.

This term is defined more by the process of distillation, which marks it off from native forms of brewing liquors by simple fermentation, than by any distinctive ingredient. Its wide distribution and integration into the morphological system of some languages shows how easily loanwords can take on the characteristics of native forms. Somewhat ironically, Old Javanese arak must have been borrowed during the earliest period of Islamization, as it is one of the few Arabic loans in the Old Javanese material.

district, administrative unit

Ilokano purókvillage; community; group, cluster, assembly, company, meeting
Tagalog purókdistrict; locality; neighborhood; place; area
Bikol purókdistrict

Apparently a Tagalog loan distribution from a form that must originally have had an intervocalic voiced alveolar stop.

divine, find by divination, tell fortunes

Tagalog tanóŋquestion; interrogation; inquiry
Iban nenoŋto divine, find by divination (Scott 1956)
Malay tənoŋabstraction; being plunged in thought; absent-minded, as a seer is absent-minded
Sundanese tənuŋclairvoyance (of a magician or soothsayer); prophesying by means of astrology
Old Javanese tənuŋdivining magic (esp. as performed with a cock?)
Javanese tenuŋblack magic; practitioner of black magic
Balinese nenuŋpractice magic, cast spells, prophesy
Sasak tənuŋtell fortunes

Borrowing from Malay.

(Dempwolff: *peniŋ ‘dizzy’)


Malagasy fáninagiddy, dizzy
Iban penin palaʔdizziness, vertigo
Malay peniŋdizziness; vertigo

Borrowing from Malay. Based on the Malagasy and Malay forms Dempwolff (1938) posited Uraustronesisch *peniŋ ‘dizzy’.

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do one's utmost

Malay pala-palaout-and-out; quite
  sa-pala-palaas thoroughly as possible
Karo Batak er-pala-palado one's utmost
Makassarese sa-pala-palaif it must be

Karo Batak er-pala-pala is assumed to be a natively affixed borrowing of Malay pala-pala. The Makassarese form may also be borrowed from Malay, or a chance resemblance.

dock, pier, wharf

Itbayaten pantalanpier, wharf
Ilokano pantalánwharf; pier
Tagalog pantalánwooden or bamboo pier; quay; wharf
Bikol pantalánpier, dock
Agutaynen pantalanwharf, pier
Palawan Batak pantálanharbor, channel, pass
Maranao pantalanwharf, dock, pier

Borrowing from Malay. Dempwolff (1938) reconstructed ‘Uraustronesisch’ *cukup ‘be sufficient’.


Malay bonékadoll
Makassarese bonekadoll

Borrowing from Portuguese.


Ilokano lumba-lumbakind of large marine fish
Tagalog lumbá-lumbádolphin
Mansaka lombadolphin
Tausug lumbaʔ-lumbaʔporpoise
Malay lomba-lombaporpoise, dolphin
Old Javanese lumba-lumbaporpoise

Borrowing from Malay, where it shows a clear semantic relationship with lomba ‘racing; competing’, since dolphins commonly race alongside boats.

(Dempwolff: *lalu ‘to pass by’ )

done:   past, done, gone

Tagalog láloʔ ~ lalúʔmore, increasingly
Malagasy lálugone beyond, passed
  man-dáluto pass by
Malay laluput through; done; past; afterwards
  sə-lalualways, continually
Old Javanese laluto pass, go by, elapse, continue, proceed; thereupon, subsequently; passing the limit, going too far, too much
  l<um>aluto go on regardless of the consequences, determinded to face (difficulties, death, etc.); to pass by, ignore
Kambera laluvery

Probably a Malay loan distribution. Dempwolff (1938) proposed Uraustronesisch *lalu ‘to pass by’ (Vorbeigehen).

(Dempwolff: *pintu ‘door’)


Tagalog pintóʔdoor
  ma-pintóʔto be at the door; to impend; to be ready to happen
Bikol pintóʔdoor
  mag-pintóʔto close (a door, umbrella, a shop for the night)
Maranao pintoʔdoor, gate, passageway
Malay pintudoor; gate; entrance
Toba Batak pintudoor
Sundanese pintudoor
Old Javanese ma-pintudoor-keeper
  pintw-andoor, gate
Javanese pintudoor

Attempts to find related forms in Formosan languages, as with Thao pitaw ‘door’ (Benedict 1975:273) are methodologically flawed. Based on data from Tagalog, Malay and Toba Batak Dempwolff (1938) proposed Uraustronesisch *pintu ‘door’, a reconstruction that cannot be taken seriously even on much lower phylogenetic levels, as the irregular final glottal stop in all Philippine languages points clearly to borrowing from Brunei Malay.


Malay bimbaŋsolicitude; doubt; anxious; irresolute; in love
Buginese bimbaŋdoubt, anxiety
Makassarese bimbaŋin an excited or exuberant state of mind, chaotic, restless

Borrowing from Malay.


Ilokano dúdadoubt; skeptical attitude, suspicion
  ag-dúdato be doubtful, suspicious
Bikol dúdadoubt, qualm, suspicion
Agutaynen mag-dodato doubt something or someone; to be doubtful of a person’s actions; to suspect

From Spanish duda ‘doubt’.

dove (domesticated):   pigeon, dove (domesticated)

Ilokano kalapátipigeon, dove; wedding dance
  babai a kalapátieasy girl, whore
Kankanaey kalupátipigeon, dove
Ifugaw kalupátipigeon, or a bird that resembles a dove
Casiguran Dumagat palapátipigeon
Tagalog kalapátidove; pigeon
Bikol salampáti ~ sarampátidove
Cebuano salampátigeneral term for pigeons; prostitute (euphemism)
Maranao marapatikdomesticated dove, dove, pigeon
Manobo (Western Bukidnon) merepatikdomestic dove
Mansaka sarampatipigeon
Tiruray marafatia domesticated pigeon: Columba livia Gmelin
Malay mərpatidove, pigeon, esp. the imported pigeon and not the wild (Sanskrit bharyapati)

Borrowing from Malay, ultimately from Sanskrit, presumably through the medium of Malay.

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(Dempwolff: *tunda ‘to drag, pull’)

drag, pull

Tagalog tundáʔto fish with fishhooks (not with a net)
Cebuano tundaʔ-ansmall boat usually towed behind the stern of a a larger boat, used for putting into shore where the larger boat can’t put in
Maranao tondaʔpull after, drag, lead
  tondaʔ-antrailer, tow
Ngaju Dayak tundadrag, slide
Malagasy mi-tundrato carry, to lead, to take
Malay tundadrawn or following in the wake; being towed
  panciŋ tundato troll (in fishing)
PSS *tundato pull, drag

Borrowing from Malay. Dempwolff (1938) reconstructed ‘Uraustronesisch’ *tunda ‘to drag, pull’ (schleppen).

drag on the ground (as the bottom of a dress)

Agta (Eastern) sayáddrag on the ground, scrape across the ground (as a boat being pushed across a sandbar, or a woman’s long dress dragging on the ground)
Tagalog sáyadbottom of a skirt, slip, etc. that drags on or touches the ground, the floor, or anything horizontal
Cebuano sayádfor the hem of a dress or robe to touch the ground

Probably a Tagalog loan in Eastern Agta.

dragging of hem of dress on ground

Ilokano gáyadlength of a garment
  g<um>áyadto trail (garments)
Keley-i gayadfor the hem of a dress to drag on the ground
Tagalog gáyaddragging of a skirt or train of a dress along the ground or floor
Bikol gáyadhem
  mag-gáyadto have the hem touch or drag on s.t.

A Tagalog loan distribution.

drawn, tied, even in score

Ibaloy tabdatie, no winner or loser, even score
  man-tabdato tie
Pangasinan tábladraw, tie (in a game)
Tagalog tabládrawn; tied
  maka-tabláto draw; to tie; to break even
Tausug tablaeven, equal, tied (as in a game or contest)

Borrowing of Spanish tablas ‘stalemate, draw’, with irregular loss of -s. David Zorc has noted in a personal communication that although -s is commonly added to Spanish words borrowed in Philippine languages (e.g. Pangasinan apáyas, Bikol tapáyas, Manobo (Western Bukidnon) kepayas < Spanish papaya), it is also sometimes dropped, as in the present case. It is likely that borrowing of this word from Spanish took place directly only in Tagalog, and that it then spread to other Philippine languages from this secondary source.

dregs, refuse

Malay hampasworthless residue; by-product
Dairi-Pakpak Batak ampassomething that is thrown away
Rejang apas(fibrous) waste
Sundanese hampasresidue, bagasse
Old Javanese hampasresidue after boiling
Balinese ampasremnants, left-overs; the remains of pressed sugarcane when the juice has been extracted (fed to pigs)
Sasak ampasresidue of sugarcane, bagasse
Makassarese ampasaʔcoffee grounds; dregs

Borrowing from Malay.

dregs:   residue, dregs

Tagalog látakresidue; dregs; lees; sediment; deposit liquids); solid bits of matter that settle at the bottom of a liquid
  mag-látakto form a residue or sediment
Iban latakmud, muddy
Malay lataklees; dregs; esp. oil refuse
Old Javanese latəkmud, bog

Borrowing from Malay into Tagalog.


Pangasinan balíntawaktype of dress for women consisting of a gown with butterfly sleeves, shawl, and overskirt
Tagalog balintawáktype of native woman's dress
Aklanon balintawáknative dress, knee-length, worn only for dances
Cebuano balintawákwoman's dress consisting of a blouse with puffed butterfly sleeves, a long striped skirt and a piece of cloth overlaid

Borrowing. Although the dress style in question apparently was a Spanish introduction, the name is native and may have once had other referents (cf. *balintawafk 'plant sp.).

(Dempwolff: *pakay ‘to use; to dress up, put on clothing’)

dress up in finery:   use, wear, dress up in finery

Mapun pakayclothes; anything worn (including jewelry)
Tausug pakayto wear something (as clothes, jewelry, or a belt)
  mag-pakayto adopt something (as an idea, practice, or behavior)
Ida'an begak pakayto use (< Malay)
Malay pakayusing, observing or wearing
Karo Batak er-paketo dress oneself
  maketo use something; to adorn oneself, dress up
Toba Batak ma-mahewear beautiful clothes
Nias faketo use
  ma-maketo use, employ
Sundanese pakeuse it!; clothes, clothing
Bare'e pakeornament; beautiful costume
Tae' paketo use; to wear, have on; festival dress, beautiful clothing, adornment
Manggarai paketo use; clothing
Rembong paketo use
  pake wekiclothing

This is a clear Malay loanword in both of its common senses: ‘to use’ and ‘to wear/clothiing, adornment’. Dempwolff compared the Ngaju Dayak, Malay, Toba Batak and Javanese words given here with Tagalog pákay ‘mission; purpose; intention; aim’, and posited Urindonesisch *pakay ‘to use; to dress up, put on clothing’. However, the Tagalog word does not appear to be related to the others, and the remaining forms do not justify a reconstruction. (see clothing)

dried fish

Ilokano tuyódried fish
Ibaloy toyodried fish
Sambal (Botolan) toyóʔdried fish
Tagalog tuyóʔdry; not wet; arid (of land); dry, referring to weather; dried-up; withered, as leaves and flowers
  t<in>uyóʔdried, as fish or meat
Bikol tuyóʔdried fish (whole)

This appears to be a Tagalog loan distribution.

drink:   refreshments taken with drink

Malay tambulrefreshments; properly liquid refreshments (as tea or coffee)
Karo Batak er-tambulthe eating by ghosts of food that a spritual medium has put in his mouth while in a trance
Toba Batak tambulside dish that is eaten when drinking palm wine
Sundanese tambulanything eaten alone that is usually used, or that belongs with something else, as meat without rice
Old Javanese tambulrefreshments (taken with drink)

drinking:   water not intended for drinking

Malay ban-ufermented coconut water used in dyeing; water in which rice has been washed; water for use as ink, etc.
Old Javanese ban-uwater
Javanese ban-uwater; fluid; tamarind (orange, etc.) juice
Madurese ban-ourine
Balinese ban-uwater
Komodo banuwater; tears

Except for Komodo, these form a restricted cognate set; Komodo is a loan from Javanese or Balinese.


Bintulu bəDukdrum used to call people to prayer
Malay bedoka rude drum (a hollow cylinder of wood covered at one end only with a buffalo-hide) used for calling people to prayer or for signalling, and not for music. In Java it figures only in the royal gamelan (gamelan sekatén) where it is thumped from time to time to indicate the royal character of the orchestra
Sundanese bedugthe large drum (like a Turkish drum) used to call people to prayer at the mosque
Javanese beḍugmosque drum; gamelan drum resembling a mosque drum; sounding of the mosque drum at noon, to summon Moslems to prayer; noon
Balinese beḍuglarge heavy drum, such as is used in mosques
Sasak bedukmosque drum
  pantok bedukbeat the drum to call the faithful to prayer
Bimanese bodomosque drum
Komodo bedoʔmosque drum
Manggarai bedolarge drum

Borrowing from Malay.


Itbayaten tamborbig drum
Bikol tambórdrum
Iban tamburdrum of Western or Chinese type
Sasak tamburdrum
Mongondow tambordrum
Chamorro tambotdrum

Borrowing of Spanish tambor ‘drum’.

dry measure for grain etc.

Ilokano kabán75 liter dry measure; cavan
  kaban-ento place in sacks; measure in cavans
Kankanaey kabáncavan; 75 liters (measure for rice, beans, etc.)
Ifugaw kabánIfugaw pronunciation of the term caván, measure for pounded rice, beans, etc., 25 halúb
Casiguran Dumagat kabancavan, a dry measure of 125 liters, or fifty gantas (note: in other areas of the Philippines, a cavan is equivalent to twenty-five gantas)
Ibaloy kabancavan; a unit of dry measure equivalent to 75 liters, or 4 large kerosene cans (used especially for rice, both rough and milled; introduced as a measure by the Spanish in the 19th century)
Pangasinan kabáncavan, a dry measure approximately equivalent to a bushel
Tagalog kabáncavan; a Philippine measure of 75 liters or 25 gantas
Bikol kabána unit of dry measure equal to 25 ganta or 75 liters, commonly used to refer to a sack of rice
Aklanon kabáncavan (unit of measure-- 25 gantas); a sackful of grain weighing approximately 100 pounds
Agutaynen kabana measurement for rice, holds approximately one “pasong” or 25 “ganta” of rice, which is equivalent to 62.5 kilos
Cebuano kabánmeasurement equivalent to twenty-five gantas

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(Dempwolff: *bibi)


Casiguran Dumagat bíbiduck
Kapampangan bibiduck
Tagalog bíbikind of duck
Aklanon bíbiduck
Hiligaynon bíbiduck
Cebuano bíbismall duck with colored feathers
  bibih-ánduck farm
Maranao bibiduck
Kelabit bibekdomesticated duck
Malagasy vívyspecies of little grebe or dabchick: Podiceps minor L.
Malay bébékduck (onomatopoetic, from its quacking)
Dairi-Pakpak Batak bibiduck
Toba Batak bibidomesticated duck
Sundanese bébékthe ordinary duck
Old Javanese bébékduck
Javanese bébékduck (water bird)
Balinese bébéka water-fowl
  bébék aŋsaswan bébék doloŋgoose bébék mameriduck
Sasak bébékduck
  bébék jawaManila duck
Mongondow bébékduck
Gorontalo bibiʔoduck
  bibiʔo manilaManila duck
Wolio βeβeduck
  βeβe manilaManila duck
Manggarai bébékdomesticated duck; wild duck
Rembong bébékduck
Sika bébekduck
Hawu ɓeɓeduck
Rotinese bébeduck
Asilulu bebekduck
Buruese bebe, bebetduck

Borrowing from Malay. The history of domesticated ducks in island Southeast Asia is still poorly understood. Although a term for 'wild duck' (*ŋaRaq) was present in PMP, there is no non-suspect linguistic evidence for early domestication of ducks by AN-speaking peoples. The presence of a mid-front vowel in many of the terms cited here points to borrowing from Malay. At the same time the occurrence of reflexes in Malagasy and Old Javanese indicates that diffusion of the term (and the associated practice of domesticating ducks) must have begun by the 7th century A.D. All of this is consistent with a hypothesis that the practice of domesticating ducks was introduced to island Southeast Asia during the Indianization of Sumatra and the Malay Peninsula.

This is one of the few cases in which a Malay loanword appears to have reached Taiwan, but given the practical value of the animal and the likelihood that diffusion to Taiwan took place directly from the Philippines a hypothesis of borrowing is not at all unlikely. Although a Sanskrit term for 'goose' was borrowed by Malay, bébék appears to be an onomatopoetic formation from native lexical material. Gedaged bibi 'turkey', Tongan pīpī 'turkey' and similar terms in other OC languages seem clearly to be the product of an independent development.

(Dempwolff: *tampak ‘to blunt, make something dull’)

dull:   blunt dull

Ngaju Dayak tampakblunt, dull (of blade or tip)
Malagasy tápakabroken off, cut off, settled, finished
Toba Batak tampakblunt, not sharp at the tip
Javanese tempakhaving no sharp angles

Borrowing from Malay. Dempwolff (1938) reconstructed ‘Uraustronesisch’ *tampak ‘to blunt, make something dull’ (abstumpfen).

dull (physically and mentally)

Bikol pulpóldull, slow (in thinking)
Agutaynen polpoldumb; not smart
Cebuano pulpúlnot bright (as a child);, unskillful in doing or executing things; for vehicles or animals to be slow in running speed

Probably a Bisayan loan in Agutaynen.

(Dempwolff: *tagiq ‘dun someone for collection of a debt’)

dunning to collect a debt

Ngaju Dayak tagihdunning, making demands for repayment of a debt
Malagasy tákireclamation, dunning, pursuit (used primarily of debts)
Iban tagihimportune, press for, dun for debt
Malay tagehto importune; to press (of dunning a man for debt); also of a craving that gives a man no peace until he satisfies it
Sundanese tagihto dun, demand repayment of a debt
Old Javanese tagihto claim, demand
  t<um>agih-akənto demand repayment on something; inflict the punishment for; to demand the payment of
Javanese ka-tagih-anaddicted to
  pa-tagih-anwritten acknowledgement of indebtedness
  tagih-anpayment on/of a debt
Balinese tagihask for, demand; admonish, exhort; threated; be addicted to (drugs, drink)
Sasak tagi(h)to dun for repayment of a debt

Borrowing from Malay. Dempwolff (1938) reconstructed ‘Uraustronesisch’ *tagiq ‘dun someone for collection of a debt’.

(Dempwolff: *siliq ‘obligation, duty’)

duty:   obligation, duty, commitment

Ngaju Dayak silihdebt
Malay silehto replace; to make good
Old Javanese silihone another, each other, mutually; in turn, alternating
  a-nililto take over, borrow, use for a time
  s<um>ilihto succeed, take over; in turn
Javanese silihborrowed; to do vicariously
  baraŋ silih-ana borrowed item

Dempwolff (1938) proposed *siliq ‘obligation, duty’, but the limited distribution of this form among languages that have long been in contact is better explained as a product of borrowing.

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Ilokano tínadye, indigo
  ag-tínato dye the hair
  tiná-ento dye black
Bontok tínaa black dye used especially in preparing death clothes
Casiguran Dumagat tínato color, to dye (of armbands, bark cloth and the strips of grass used to make the design of mats and baskets
Tagalog tínaʔdye
Agutaynen tinahair dye
Maranao tinaʔdye
Manobo (Western Bukidnon) tinaʔto impregnate something with a black color

Apparently a phonologically modified borrowing of Spanish tinta ‘dye’.

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Austronesian Comparative Dictionary, web edition
Robert Blust and Stephen Trussel
2010: revision 6/21/2020
email: Blust (content) – Trussel (production)