After adding some words from or derived from the Filipino language, like abaca, boondocks, barkada, and KKB, the Oxford Dictionary has added another word to the English language: the Filipino term kilig. (Another term, teleserye, is also included recently in the dictionary.)
John Simson, the head of the Oxford Dictionary, had told the rationale behind the inclusion of the term in their dictionary, “Filipinos have a strong sense of love, especially in the romantic aspect. They are expressing it in some way such that even simple non-native English speakers would not understand what the term kilig really is.”
“I had interviewed some of my workers here in our office, and they can’t even tell how that term works. I then asked some Filipinos here in London the meaning of the term, and they told me that no perfect English word can translate kilig. Simply put, it is the feeling when you are in love with somebody else; the chill that can freeze even the depths of the heart.”
As expected, Merriam-Webster Dictionary is also adding another minor facet to the English language. Particularly also for the Filipinos, it is none other than the additional definition of the word “insecure.”
The Editor-in-Chief of the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, Merriam Defensor-Santiago, who is also running for President, also expressed the reason for the inclusion of additional definition for that word.
“I have noticed, especially in social media where I am also active, that more Filipino users had often used the word ‘insecure’ without even consulting a dictionary to know its real meaning.
“These social media users, and even in everyday life, had always used the term ‘insecure’ to mean ‘jealousy’, eh ang totoong kahulugan niyan ay ‘hindi sigurado.’ Insecure ka?” (while the real meaning is ‘unsure’. Are you envious?)
“I remembered the time when in my speeches, they had told me, ‘Merriam, your word upliftment is not present in any dictionary.’ Eh meron naman akong sariling dictionary. Kung ayaw nilang isama iyang term na iyan sa kanilang dictionary, ako ang gagawa niyan.” (I have my own dictionary. If they don’t include that term in their dictionaries, I will do it.)
Merriam expects that with new terms being added in the English language, Filipinos will now play a small part in enriching the most famous language in the world.
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