May 19, 2024

HAVE YOU EVER wondered – once or twice (or, often!) how the English kinship terms “close kin” or “distant relatives” apply in your language(s) respective? Are you aware.. if there are ‘specifying’ terms to mark or indicate the distance or degree of relationships, between or among kindred?
IN OUR DISCUSSION today, let us directly proceed to the kinship among individuals – outside the home or ‘nuclear’ family; since inside the family, we have terms or terminologies – both Address- and Reference-, basic almost in every home imaginable – transcending the boundaries of race, nation, region, et cetera.
WITHIN THE FAMILY, there are usually or mostly the terms: Father(F), Mother(M), son(s), daughter(d); if a bit extended, there are: the Grandfather(GF), Grandmother(GM), and perhaps: another family member ‘related to the family (RTF)’.
IS THIS ‘RELATED to the family’ or RTF, a patrikin (of the father’s line), a matrikin (of the mother’s line), or a putative kin (i.e. acknowledged relative but yet of an indeterminate line)?
IT IS THIS RTF – whose connexion to (or coming into) the family home or ‘circle’ is yet undetermined, unknown, undisclosed, etc., around which shall revolve our topic discussion today.


IN THE PHILIPPINES, we can observe varied or different cases of the RTF (or RTFs) line or lines. But perchance what could be deduced ‘common’ is that RTFs come and visit often, the family ‘nuclear’; some, seldom; though others, rarely or never(?).
FREQUENT (OR LESS) visits renew or ‘re-kindle’ the bond; but no-visits at all result – generally to: oblivion or discard.. especially among the next or later generations.


IN THE CORDIS, kinship could be the vital foci of the individual’s life. Family is prime consideration.. it does not just flourish there. For
BEYOND HIS HOME, the Cordi fellow is expected to know, recognize, and acknowledge the genetic or putative connexions of his family, ancestors, and/or predecessors.
IMBUED WITH THIS trait or way of Discerning, Panangikari, he logically earns (sometimes with little awareness) the admiration, respect, and closeness of his villagemates; at times, even beyond. He suddenly becomes the ‘darling harmless’ – mapteng noman si iman, of everyone. So
RTFs COULD BE within the Household; (but could also be) of another Sitio, Barangay, etc.; different from that of referring kindred or kinsman.
SAID REFERRING KINSMAN may refer to – or directly address, the RTF as either any, or other some, of the following ‘kinship’ terms, (viewable from the English standpoints as: ‘close-and-distant kin’; take special note, we use the connector -and- rather than -or¬-, to capture the ‘degree’ of Panangikari (cf. Supra) the Cordi ‘way’; and now,) to wit:
AGUI =int (equals by interpretation) “Sibling”;
KHAIT =int “fellow” or “co-folk” in the village;
KHUPOS =int “fellow descendant” – applied specifically in Bokod and in Southwestern Kabayan. [In midway Bila, N. Baskod, some folks refer to me as Khupos sa apon Pucay, I-Andimay (Transl: “Fellow descendant of Pucay [the one from] Amlimay”).
BONAT =int “bloodkin, known, ‘recognized’ and/or ‘acknowledged’ (Note the difference of Application: ‘recognized’ i.e. in Nabaloi: eraka mengikeshi (Transl: “they trace us.. some”); and ‘acknowledged’ is: shaka tontona (Transl: “they/we trace both-ways”).
KABONATAN =int “bloodkin, both known and unknown (– maybe because of some facteurs obvious). For example, Iowak elders say: Bih-sak keno na Igwak imat Ikarao.. Kabonatan cha! (Transl: “Split- away folks of the Iowaks are the Ikaraos.. bloodkin they are!”).
PADTIDOS IS AN alternate term for Kabonatan. Is it derived – or taken from the Spanish Partidos? My informants cannot say. (But if it is, why is it used in the supposed-to-be original; ‘undiluted’ language of the Bahdiw/Ba-diw?).
AGUI, NEM AASHAWI =int “relative, but farther [than ‘close’]. Usually, the referring – as well as the referred-to kinsman are aware they’re kin.. but they’re unsure of the degree(s) – and ancestral ‘lines’.


NOW, LOOKING BACK at yourself in the mirror, do you often – or sometimes hear that Mr. or Miss So and So is you ‘kin’, yet if any (of the both) of you are asked, your endeavoured, penudsod, answer(s) are: ‘Yes, says my mom’; or ‘yes, according to our folks’; or even a ‘yes, of course!’ [but yourself wishing deep, they don’t pursue asking]; and so on? But
IF REALLY SURE – that you want to know, start by asking any of your folks – or Elders:
“DID ANY OF my ancestral families ever have an RTF – a ‘Related-to-the-Family’ kin: told, re-told, or untold?” Ayo, Ayo, Ino.