Ivatan (Chirin nu Ivatan)

Ivatan belongs to the Batanic branch of the Malayo-Polynesian language family. It is spoken mainly in the Batanes Islands in the Philippines, and also in Mindanao, and in southern Taiwan. In 2007 there were about 1,240 Ivatan speakers. It is also known as Ivatan, Babuyan or Ibataan.

There are three dialects of Ivatan: northern (Basco), Itbayaten (Itbayat Island) and southern (Sabtang Island). The northern Basco dialect is the basis for Standard Ivatan.

Until recently Ivatan was primarily a spoken language and was rarely written. It is now used in some literature, taught in primary schools, and used on the radio.

Ivatan alphabet and pronunciation

Ivatan alphabet and pronunciation

Details of the Ivatan alphabet and pronunciation provided by Michael Peter Füstumum

Download an alphabet chart for Ivatan (Excel)

Ivatan proverbs

Arava u mayet an namaes u ryes.
There is no strong man when the sea is at its worst.

Ipangudidi mu u mapya nanawu.
Carry with you good teaching, always bear in mind sound advice.

Nyeng mu a hukbiten ta isek ni tatumuk.
Grasp the opportunity because the bed bugs will carry and hide them inside the floor.

Sample video in Ivatan

Information about Ivatan | Numbers | Tower of Babel


Information about Ivatan

Batanic languages

Itbayat, Ivatan, Yami

Languages written with the Latin alphabet

Page last modified: 23.04.21


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