Folksongs in Lipa, Batangas by Emilia Malabanan, 1916 - Batangas History, Culture and Folklore

Folksongs in Lipa, Batangas by Emilia Malabanan, 1916

This page contains the complete transcription of the 1916 ethnographic paper written by one Emilia Malabanan from .jpeg scans of the originals made available by the National Library of the Philippines Digital Collections. Corrections for grammar had been made in certain parts but no attempt was made to rewrite the original paper. Original pagination is indicated for citation purposes.
Henry Otley-Beyer Collecdtion
[Cover page.]

Tagalog Paper No. 61.
(Folklore #168)



Emilia Malabanan

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  1. TAGALOG: Lipa, Province of Batangas, Luzon.
  2. Folklore: Folksongs: Literature.
  3. Language: Texts.

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March, 1916

[p. 1]



Emilia Malabanan.

If one should go to any barrio in my locality and watch the people at work, he will hear them merrily singing more native songs composed by themselves or by their ancestors. On moonlit nights, especially, when they have no more work to do, the young men gather together and to to the young ladies’ houses and there, in front of their houses, they dance and sing. This is called “mananapat.” They are often answered by the young ladies inside the house and occasionally, the ladies come down and join the dancing and singing outside. Then, we say there is “pandango.” They know many songs, and it is no wonder that some bright young man or young woman in the group composes their own songs for the occasion. Here are a few of the easy songs which one often hears in the country:

“Halina halina’y aking si maganda
Ngipi’y pantay-pantay marikit tumawa [unsure word].”
Come, come my pretty one whose teeth are of the same length and who smiles charmingly.
“Si Aling Puying po’y magandang boses
Parang pinirinsa ang balat ng pisñgi.”
Miss Puying is a pretty girl; her complexion is like an ironed object.
“Saan ka nangaling saan ka nagbuhat
Ikaw bituin kong, talagang maliwanag.”

[p. 2]

Where have you come from, where have you descended from, my star, my bright morning star.
Si Aling Neneng po’y tala sa Oriental
Karikit na rubing napiilandang;
Pag nakapagpaayo’y sutlang dinilawan
Ang halimbawa’y sumikat na araw.”
Miss Neneng is an Oriental morning star, a beautiful shining ruby; when she wears a yellow silk kerchief on her head, she seems to be sunshine itself.

The above songs are all complimentary and the men sing them when they meet their lady friends or someone whose favors they wish to win. In “tapatan” or “pandango,” they use the following:


“Magandang gabi po sa ating sangbahayan
At lalonglalo na sa mga magulang.”
Good evening to the households and more especially to the parents.
“Tao po may bahay po, may bahay na bato
Buksi ang bintana’t tayo’y magpandango
Kung walang guitara’y maski na bilao
Matuloy po lamang ang ating pandango.”
Here are men, sir, you who have a house of stone; open the window and let us have “Pandango.” If there is no guitar, a tray will do so long as we can have our “pandango.”

[p. 3]

In the source of the “tapatan” or “pandango,” the singers according to custom, may expose their purpose or purposes in coming, and get their answers, if the ladies so desire. Here is a song that expresses a sighing:

“maniwala ka’y sa laki ng hirap
Walang di naulan gab-i na’y nalakad
Makadating lamang sa mahal mong harap.
Baka ñg dumating sa mahal mong harapan
Ay sara ang pinto’t ang hagdan ay litaw.”
Believe me for I suffer much, because even [if] it rains at night I walk my way, in order to be able to come before you, and now that I arrive in your home, the door is closed and the stairway is out of place.

Indirect declaration:

“May isa daw papel na lilipadlipad
Ambotin mo Charing ñg dalwa mong palad
Kung itatanong mo ang laman ñg sulat
Ang puso ni Pepeng tantong naghihirap.”
There is a piece of paper floating in the air, get it Charing with your two palms; if you ask for the content of the letter, it is Pepe’s heart that is in great agony.
“Siya ay nangaling sa malayong bayan
Pinaghanap ka’t nababalitaan

[p. 4]

At ñgayong dumating sa inyong harapan
Pasasaan ngayon ang pinagaadyaan?”
He came from a distant town looking for you because he had heard much about you and now that he has arrived, where is the object of his long journey?
“Ako po ay tabi’t ako ay pipitas
Ñg balabalaking buko ñg kalamias
Ang pipitasin ko’y magpapaka-iñgat
Si Aling Maria pong may tala sa palad”
Excuse me for I am going to pick a fruit of camias [bilimbi]; the one which I shall get must be very careful for it is Miss Maria who has a star in the palm of her hand.

Favorable answer:

“Mahal na prinsipe’y di ko bawal [blurred word]
Pumitas ñg dayap kung hinog sa dulo.”
I do not forbid you, dear Princes, to pick up lemon if it is already ripe.
“Mahal na prinsipe’y kung mamimitas ka
Umakyat sa puno at bago sa buñga.”
Prince, if you want to gather fruits you climb the trunk first.

Unfavorable answer:

“Mahal na prinsipe’y dumating kang huli
Pag-ibig ko ñgayon ay di na sarili.”

[p. 5]

Dear Prince you came late; my love does not belong to me anymore.
“Mahal na prinsipe’y bibiguin kita
Masunod mo lamang ang hiling ko’t pita;
[Blurred word} mo lamang dahon ñg aroma
Pakakasal ako ng walang pagsala.”
Dear Prince, I will love you, provided you do what I tell you to; if you can tie into a boyo [unsure word] knot the leaf of the aroma plant, I will marry you without fail.
“Mahal kong prinsipe’y kung talagang gusto
Magtanim ka muna ñg niog sa bato,
Ngayon din mabuñga’y ñgayon din bubuko
Ñgayon din kukunin ang igagata ko.”
Dear Prince, if you really love me, plant first a coconut plant in a rock, let it bear fruit now, and now I also am going to use its milk in cooking.

These lines show resentment:

“Di baga’y ñg una’y wika mo sa akin
Kung ako’y mamata’y bubuhayin mo rin,
Baka ñgayon nama’y ang aking marating
Ikamamatay ko’y sa iyo nangaling.”
Did you not tell me before that if I should die you would give me life again, and now the result is that I shall die because of you.

[p. 6]

“Ako’y huag mo ñg igaya sa panyo
Hangang bago bago’y tiklopi’t itago
Pag lumaluma na’t pinta ay Malabo
Dala sa kusina’t pamahid ng ñguso.”
Do not treat me like a handerchief that is folded and kept well while new, and when it gets old and the design is fading, you take it into the kitchen to wipe your mouth with.
“Di na ñga yata’y ako’y [blurred word] mo
At sino sa aking pinaghabinlan mo
Ilayo ñg Dios ay saktan ñg ulo
Sinong tatawaguin kung wala na dito?”
So you are going to leave but to whom have you entrusted the care of me? God forbid, but if I should have a headache, whom shall I call if you be not here?


“Sino kaya yaong titilatilaok
Walang hiyang bibig na aki’y nasagot.”
Who is there that shouts without restrain, a shameless mouth that answers me?


“Di aleng Kitang po’y di na malaluan
At iaalis na’y sa sariling nayon
Doon ipopondo’t doon itutuloy

[p. 7]

Kina mamang Idong mataas ang silong.”
It will not be long and Miss Kitang will be gone from her own native barrio. She will be brought to Mr. Idon’s high house.
“Si aleng Arse pong magandang maganda
Mahulog sa balo’y naging balbarosa
Itinatanong ko’y kung sinong kukuha
Si mamang Ito po na walang pagsala.”
Miss Arse who was very beautiful fell into the well and became a geranium; I ask who will get her, it is Mr. Ito for sure.
“Balibalita ko ay si aleng Itang t maglagay
Di na malalaos at mamimianan.”
I have heard that Miss Itang will soon live with some in-laws
“Nabalitaan ko na si aling Kwan
Masakit ang ulo at [blurred word] ñg tian
Si Mamang Anto po’y maalam din naman
Mag reremedio’t maglagay ñg tapal.”
I am told that Miss Somebody has a headache and a stomach-ache. Mr. Anto knows how to apply some remedy and plaster.
“Si Aling Toria po’y ayaw magpandango
Ang dinadahila’y masakit ang ulo.
Sabi ng mediko’y hindi sakit ito
Sinta ñg binatang umabot sa ulo.”

[p. 8]

Miss Toria does not want to take part in the “pandango” because she pretends to have a headache. The physician says she has not sickness but some young man’s love has entered her head.
“Si aleng Sayong po’y ayaw sumayaw
Ang dinadahila’y masakit ang tiyan
Sabi ñg mediko’y hindi sakit iyan
Sinta ng binatang ayaw paibabaw.”
Miss Sayong does not want to dance pretending to have stomach-ache. The physician says there was no sickness but love to a young man that does not want to appear.

The following lines are metaphorical. The lover’s feelings are implied in them.

“Doon po sa aming bayan ñg Samaria
Pag-itan ñg ilog lupang Palestina
May tumubo doong ibong mag-asawa
Ang pañala’y Penis kaliga-ligaya.

Ang Penis na ito’y gumayak ñg pugad
Sa kapunong kahoy mayabong mataas
At sa katibayan ñg ginawang pugad
Sang taon na ngayo’y di pa nawawalat.”
There is my home in Samaria, a town between two rivers and belonging to Palestine, there grew two mated birds whose names were Penis and who are very amusing.

[p. 9]

Those Penis made a nest in a spreading tall tree. The nest is so strongly built that a year has already passed and it is still good.

The following are boastful songs:

“Doon po sa amin sa kasilañganan
May nagdaang niknik at aking napatay;
Ang taba nito’y aking ipinatunaw
Ang nakuhang lañgis ay pitong tapayan
Ang balat pa nito’y aking ipinakulti’t
Ipinagawa kong pitong taburete,
Ang uupo dito’y pawang mabubuti,
Tenienteng [blurred word] kapitang babae.”
Over there in my eastern home, passed a gnat which I happened to kill. I had its fat melted and got even jars of lard; I had its skin made into leather which was then made into seven chairs. Those who will sit on them are all good people: the past lieutenants and the women captains.
“Ako ang babaeng hindi matatakot
Sa putok ng baril bala’y ganga niog
Ako’y natamaan sa aking tugatog
Pinispis ko lama’t akala ko’y lamok.”
I am a woman who is not afraid of bullets as big as coco nut fruits. Once, I was hit at my back and I swept it with my hand thinking that the bullet was a mosquito.

[p. 10]

“Eriang, Eriang bakin baga gayon
Bakit ang mukha mo’y kapol ñg bulutong
Mabuti na iyo’y takloban ñg bakal
Sidlan ñg dayamit susuhan ñg apoy.”
Eriang, Eriang why is it so? Why is your face full of smallpox scars? It is better for you to be covered by a basket, fill it with straw then set the whole thing on fire.

These show irony:

“Akoi ibiguin mo’t lalaking malakas
Sa ano mang gawi’y hindi nagugulat
Sang palyok na kani’t sang bilaong sapsap
Pag di ko naubos ako’y linalagnat.”
Love me for I am strong and I am not afraid of any work. A pot of rice and a tray of dried fish, if I do not finish in one meal, I get feverish.
“Si mamang Pako po’y lalaking malakas
Di pa makadala’y sang gatang na bigas.”
Mr. Pako is a strong man, for he cannot carry a ganta of husked rice.

Giving information:

“Balibalita ko’y nag-aabala ka
Kina aleng Sabel [blurred word] ñg granada,
Pag natapatan mo ang mayor na sañga
Magbibigay ka din bago makababa.”

[p. 11]

I have heard that you intend to pick a pomegranate fruit from Sabel’s garden. If you happen to choose a dear one, you will have a hard time to get it.

This show’s women’s vanity:

“Ang [blurred word] ko’y ayaw sumimba
Ang dinadahila’y walang sayang pula.”
My lady love does not want to go to church for she says she has no red skirt.

The lines that follow show faithfulness and resentment both:

“Saan ka nangaling, oh giniguiliw ko,
Bakit ka nalaon sa pinaronan mo?
Nagkatuyotuyo ang tira kong hicho,
Di ko ninganganga’t sa iyo’y laan ko.”
Where have you been oh my dear one? Why have you stayed out so long? The buyo which I had been keeping for you and which I did not want myself to chew is already dried up.

There are many other songs of the same type as those I mentioned here; but I have selected the most common, the most clearly understood and the better polished if we may call them polished at all.

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Notes and references:
Transcribed from “Folksongs in Lipa, Batangas,” by Emilia Malabanan, 1916, online at the Henry Otley-Beyer Collection of the National Library of the Philippines Digital Collections.

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