April 2, 2023

DID YOU KNOW that there was a time or period, that the Ibaloi ‘tribe’, ‘group’, etc., was regarded as two Phatries, i.e. ‘half-divisions of a tribe’? And that they were identified so as: Ehnontog (mountain-dwelling) and Ikulos/riverbank settlers)? That also: their languages respective did not match in significant features like: grammar, vocabulary, pronunciation, and intonation?
[TO HELP YOU take a deeper appreciation for this Discussion, let me cite you a similar – but not duplicating, case which is already documented: that of the Northern Cheyennes of Montana and the Southern Cheyennes of Oklahoma. One difference though with the case of the Ibaloi is: the contrasts in said Cheyenne languages amount to only in ‘some vocabularies’. If
[HOWEVER, MATCHED WITH the Suhtai (also Sutaio) – another ‘tribe’ attached to the Cheyenne – both the Northern and the Southern, the contrasts may ‘approximate’ the case of the above cited ‘Phatries’ of the Ibaloi]. Now, back to those Phatries.
ACCORDING TO HISTORIANS Bagamaspad and Pawid, one day – long time ago, there was a big assembly somewhere in Benguet. There were many people. (.. of course, there was crowding); two important men were at the helm: Amkidit of the Ehnontog or Iruntug and Maxai of the Ikulos. There were rituals, there was a sacrifice, etc.; from that time on the Ibalois became ‘one people’.(Read more in: A. Bagamaspad and Z.H. Pawid – A People’s History of Benguet).
LET’S DWELL YET on five (5) most obvious areas of Contrast, namely: 1) the Linkers ja vs jen; 2) Nocabularies (taken randomly); 3) the Yes-No Interrogatives; 4) the Tag Questions; and 5) the ID Expressions. Now, the first area, or ‘difference’:
THE LINKERS JA and jen. Ja for the Ikulos and Jen for the Ehnontog, as in the sentence: Sahei ja/jen taxe si Sixal. (Transl. “One of the witnesses is Sixal”).
WHAT MAKES THE Ikulos ja even more obvious is the Lenition it enjoys when spoken; so that in our example above, this will be rendered Sahei ya taxe si Sixal by the Ikulos while the Ehnontog cannot say Sahei yen taxe si Sixal – the jen remains with the /dz/ rendition; unlike the Ikulos who may shift to /j/ the original /dza/.
FURTHERMORE, THE IKULOS may convert the dza-linker simply to /a/, as in: Mamapteng a bi-I si Pejed. (Transl: “Beautiful woman is Pejed”). Note: the first two words in this sentence may glide to sound like: Mamaptenga~. Next,
THE VOCABULARIES. SO many and often strikingly contrastive, that we have to present here only the randomly available samples, to wit:
THE EHNONTOG (EH) assen vs. the Ikulos (IK) on-an “equals by interpretation” (or=int) to the verb “to see” or verb-root “see”.
THE EH DITEB vs the IK Sabiyen, to stand for the English noun: “door”. Further, the EH shamo vs the IK pilmero (Adjectives, =int “first”); the EH Pan eenayad kan man ekkad. vs. the IK Pan dododop kan man ekkad. (Same sentence to mean “[You] walk slowly.” However, the second words – eenayad and dododop, actually adverbs, are contrastive; and so forth. And next:
THE YES-NO INTERROGATIVES. In asking a question that requires a Yes-No answer, the Ikulos (IK) speaker does it with a rising intonation at the end of the sentence.. much like how it is done in English; but
THE EHNONTOG (EH) speaker does it mostly with a dropping intonation. Try it fair with the sentence, Si-kam si Julio, ono July? (Transl: “You’re Julio, or July?” RISING and/or DROPPING Intonations. Note: the cited names are true ones, and incidentally, the first is married to an Ikulos from Banao, Bokod; the second is married to an Ehnontog – from Loakan, Baguio City and descended too from Atok, Benguet. So,
(IN CASE, YOU want to go ‘in-depth’ with the EH vs. IK Yes-No intonations, you may try conversation with our true examples herein cited). And then,
THE TAG QUESTIONS. At the end of a statement, the Ikulos – to verify, to have confirmation, etc. will say ~oh? as in: Nabnabdei ka ma, oh? (Transl. “Tired you are already, aren’t you”)?
THE EHNONTOG SPEAKER will use – in place, their own Tag Question which is: ~siya? (Note: this may be the shortened form of the Standard Usage which is: Aligwen siya? Literally: “Not so?”).
AND THE COMPLETE-sentence version.. the Ehnontog way? Nabnabdei ka ma, siya? Or, some of their speakers will just drop the ~siya? Tag Question. Our final Area of Contrast in today’s discussion is about:
THE EXPRESSIONS: BADARONG! And Bantiwel! When the Nabaloi doesn’t like a situation, place, person, or thing, he exclaims: Badarong! But, note:
ONLY THE EHNONTOG use or says that; the Ikulos will not.. or, never say Badarong! So, when you hear someone say it, he must be an Ehnontog – by birth, by domicile, by influence, by affinity, or what.
BANTIWEL! THE OTHER Expression – on the other hand, is used by both ‘Phatries’..freely and openly – to stand for any, some, or all of the following ‘shades’ of meaning: “Fool!, foolish! that’s wrong! that’s crazy! count me out!”, et cetera.
SOMETIMES, IT IS ‘Lenitized’ to: Ti-wess! but especially by the Ehnontog Nabaloi speakers. [By the way, the Pangasinenses have their own rendition of this, i.e. atiwel – approximating the aforecited ‘shades’ (Supra). Across the years however.
THE EHNONTOGS AND the Ikulos have intermarried and multiplied exceedingly, that Today, they mutually recognize the need to let live side by side the juxtaposing areas of Contrast – instead of allowing any to suffer rejection or discard!