Kapampangans as Romantics-A A +A
Tuesday, February 12, 2013
ARE Kapampangans romantic?
Our literature doesn't have a famous love story to match Florante at Laura. Our mythology is dominated by two deities who are not in love, but at war, and the one song that identifies our music, Atin Ku Pung Singsing, is about a mother's (not lover's) lost ring.
Our valentine vocabulary has also shrunk to just two expressions: "Buri da ka" and "Kaluguran da ka." "Buri da ka" is the Kapampangan equivalent of the Tagalog "Gusto kita" (I like you), while "Kaluguran da ka" is our version of "Mahal kita" or "Iniibig kita" (I love you).
But... surprise! A quick check of Fray Diego Bergaño's 18th-century Kapampangan dictionary, Vocabulario de la Lengua Pampanga en Romance, will show that our ancestors had words for love, all kinds of love-true love, first love, secret love, forbidden love, endless love, lost love, unconditional love, unrequited love, even fatal love.
"Kalugurán" (stressed on the last syllable to differentiate it from káluguran" stressed on the first syllable, which means "friend") came from the root word "lugud," which means "passion and affection, tending to be compassion," according to Bergaño.
"Lugud" is therefore not exclusively for romantic lovers because, as Bergaño says, it includes the elements of "compassion" and "piety."
"Buri," on the other hand, is not just "like" but actually also "affection or love." According to Bergaño, "micaburi" refers to "those agreeing to love or marry one another."
"Mamuri" is "one who is already falling in love, like at age 14" or one who is "struggling with many loves." Thus: "Diyos ko, mamuri ne y Pedro ali ya pa metuli!" (My God, Pedro is already in love with someone and he's not even circumcised yet!)
"Buriburian" is used for someone "who is only lukewarmly loved" or a person whom one only pretends to love. For example: "Kalinguan mu ne y Sabel, buriburian na ka nita." (Forget Sabel, she doesn't really love you) Strangely, a variation of "buri" is "paburian" which is "let alone" or "leave alone." Most Kapampangans pronounce it as "paburen" (/ia/ becoming the diphthong /e/).
Thus: "Obat pepaburian me y Jose? Buri me, ali?" (Why did you neglect Jose? You love him, don't you?)
On the other hand, "lugud" has its own darker shade of meaning. For example, according to Bergaño, "micalugud" means "illicit lovers," as in "Ali mi sasaryan, mikalugud kami ning misis mu!" (We didn't mean to, but your wife and I fell in love!)
In this relationship, the mistress is the "máquicalugud" (stressed on the first syllable) while the man who keeps the mistress is the "maquicalugúd" (stressed on the last syllable).
As it turns out, as early as the 1600s, Kapampangans were already saying "Kaluguran da ka," according to another Spanish missionary, Fray Francisco Coronel, OSA who wrote a Kapampangan grammar in 1621 entitled Arte y Reglas de la Lengua Pampanga, in which he actually recorded the ancient Kapampangan phrase "Caluguran da ca" and translated as "You are beloved of me." (I'm sure prehistoric Kapampangans said the same thing in kulitan.)
In exploring the nuances of love, Bergaño mentions other related terms. For example, he describes "those who are secretly in love" as "mipaguinut" from the root "guinut" which means "to advance little by little." Hence, "Ditak a lawe, pakindat- kindat, pasalikut a timan-makanyan kaming mipaguinut Maria ku" (A little glance, maybe a wink, a stolen smile-that's how Maria and I keep our love secret).
The word "tandic," which refers to the way a cock behaves around a hen, also applies to "a man who is about to fall in love." A "balintatauo" (Tagalog balintataw) means "darling of the eye" (I suppose "apple of the eye") and "mipagdiuata" means "adoring or worshipping the loved one" (from the word "diuata," idol). The word "lolo" (diphthong of /lolao/) survives to this day as "to court" or 'to woo."
Now take these two extraordinary Kapampangan words, "palliasa" and "yauis."
"Palliasa" is, according to Bergaño, "that tender pain or one who remembers the happy and carefree life in the past, and now suffers the pain of loss, especially the loss of a loved one," while "yauis" is an adjective that means "distressed, becoming weak and thin due to pining for love or falling in love."
Take note that both of them refer to lovesickness, but "palliasa" is for a lost love while "yauis" is for a love that is still not yours.
A synonym is "salbat" which is the ancient Kapampangan word for "anguish, grief, affliction over the absence of a loved one." It's probably the origin of the term "magsalibatbat," referring to a type of penitents during Holy Week.
Interesting to note that the ancient Kapampangan word "antac," which means both "vagina" and "the pain of anguished love" is still used today to mean "losing it over a woman" ("Meantac ya").
I think the best Kapampangan word for romantic love is "sinta." We didn't borrow it from the Tagalogs. It's there in Bergaño's dictionary (maybe it's the Tagalogs who borrowed it from us, or maybe both Kapampangans and Tagalogs got it from an earlier, common source).
Bergaño defines "sinta" as "love that always carries with it the pain and anxiety to enjoy one's beloved." He goes on to give examples: "sinta cu" (my love), "sinta ra ca sang aquit" (how I love to see you), "malsinta" or "milsinta" (to fall in love, to feel the love, to desire the loved one), "pilsintan" (the object of feelings), "mipalsinta" (the lovers)ntan" (desire for the beloved).
There are two other related words common to both Kapampangans and Tagalogs: "liag" (liyag) and "irug" (irog). Bergaño doesn't quite know what to make of these two words, except to say that "liag" as "a word of great endearment and tenderness" and that "irug" is "anything that would incite a sick person to eat" (inspiration?).
Bergaño also recorded Kapampangan phrases that show how intensely our ancestors loved. When one said, "Ica ing busal quen cacung pangisnaua" (literally, "You are the core of my breath") it means "he is madly in love."
Here's one for the ages: "Tadtaran da cu man, ing catadtad a mitalandang, yang maquiasawa queya!" (They may cut me into small pieces, but even a piece of me will rise to marry you!)
I dare non-Kapampangans to come up with a more graphic and convincing pick-up line!
Published in the Sun.Star Pampanga newspaper on February 12, 2013.