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Filipino Nouns for Beginners

Precy enjoys helping others learn to speak and appreciate the Filipino language. She also writes about Filipino culture.

Learn Filipino/Tagalog starting with nouns.

Learn Filipino/Tagalog starting with nouns.

Learning Filipino Nouns

Whether you're already on your way to learning Tagalog or taking your first step in learning the language, these categorized tables of nouns will help you in learning more Tagalog words.

Nouns are called pangngalan in Filipino/Tagalog, and alongside adjectives and pronouns, nouns are sought after and also often the first words learned by Filipino language learners. I may have covered all these in my previous articles, but I've wanted to go into more detail regarding nouns, so I've created this specific noun-centered article.

Make learning fun and interesting by starting from what interests you the most. Even learning the different parts of a house or how to name various spices and seasonings makes it easy to remember because chances are you will hear and say these more often than you know.

So, let's start with the nouns you will likely hear often — from the different parts of your house to clothing and jewelry, animals and insects, cookware and silverware, and more.

I am also going to cover the following topics along with the nouns I discuss —

  • How to pluralize Filipino/Tagalog nouns
  • Describing Filipino/Tagalog nouns with adjectives
  • Tagalog markers to use with proper nouns and common nouns

Filipino and Tagalog

The words Filipino and Tagalog are used interchangeably throughout the article. That is because the national/official language, Filipino, is based on Tagalog and contains many Tagalog words, one of the eight major languages spoken in the Philippines.

Tagalog evolved and became Filipino. It was eventually declared the national language of the Philippines by the 1987 Constitution.

Jewelries and Clothing

Let's have Filipino nouns starting with jewelries and clothing. Learn what the word is for pants, necklace, ring and more from the table below.

Jewelries and clothing in Filipino/Tagalog.

Filipino/TagalogEnglish

damit

clothes

pantalon

pants

kwintas

necklace

hikaw

earrings

singsing

ring

relo

wrist watch

pulseras

bracelet

palda

skirt

sando

undershirt

Not everything has an equivalent word in Filipino/Tagalog so the English words are also used. Examples are pajama, jacket, sweater and even undergarments.

Parts Of A House

Busy preparing dinner in the kitchen? Learn what the word is for kitchen in Filipino as well as for the other parts of a house from the table below.

Listed here are the different parts of a house in Filipino/Tagalog from living room, bedroom, to the kitchen, toilet and more.

Filipino/TagalogEnglish

bahay

house

kwarto

bedroom

kusina

kitchen

banyo

restroom

salas

living room

garahe

garage

pinto

door

bintana

window

bubong

roof

dingding

wall

sahig

floor

lababo

kitchen sink

hagdan

stairs

sulok

corner

Let's go to the kitchen next. Learn some spices, seasonings, and condiments, starting with the most common you'll find in a Filipino kitchen. Surprise your other half the next time you get asks to hand over the soy sauce or add more fish sauce to that simmering dish.

Filipino words for spices, seasonings and condiments.

Filipino words for spices, seasonings and condiments.

Spices, Seasonings, and Condiments

Spices, seasonings and condiments with Filipino/Tagalog counterparts.

Filipino/TagalogEnglish

asin

salt

asukal

sugar

suka

vinegar

toyo

soy sauce

patis

fish sauce

mantika

oil

pamintang buo

whole black pepper

pamintang durog

ground black pepper

ketsup

catsup

luya

ginger

bawang

garlic

dahon ng laurel

bay leaf/laurel leaf

sili

chilli

pinulbos na bawang

garlic powder

pinulbos na sibuyas

onion powder

There are a lot more not on the list as they don't have Filipino/Tagalog counterparts. In such cases, English words are used instead. Star anise, cinnamon, mayonnaise, and lemon pepper are just some examples.

Animals, Insects and Pests

You'll see and encounter them too, especially some of these animals on a daily basis. For example, your dog and cat, ants and bees, and/or the neighbor's rooster that wakes you up at dawn. Find the names of these animals in Tagalog on the table below.

Names of animals and insects.

Filipino/TagalogEnglish

aso

dog

pusa

cat

kalabaw

water buffalo

baka

cow

kambing

goat

langgam

ant

bubuyog

bee

daga

rat

ipis

cockroach

kabayo

horse

lobo

wolf

kuneho

rabbit

tigre

tiger

elepante

elephant

tandang

rooster

manok

chicken

baboy

pig

pabo

turkey

liyon

lion

oso

bear

itik

duck

usa

deer

Silverwares, Kitchen Utensils, and Cookware

"The pot is still hot."

"Hand over the plates and spoons."

Wait, how do you say these words in Tagalog? Learn the words in Tagalog for kitchen utensils, cookware, and silverware in the table below.

Names in Filipino/Tagalog of kitchen utensils, cookware and silverwares.

Filipino/TagalogEnglish

kutsara at tinidor

spoon and fork

pinggan

plate

platito

saucer

mangkok

bowl

kutsilyo

knife

sandok

ladle

kutsarita

teaspoon

kawali

pan

kaserola

casserole

takore

kettle

syanse

spatula

tadtaran

cutting board

pitsel

pitcher

tasa

cup/mug

Fruits and Vegetables

Let's get to fruits and veggies. Learn these vegetables and surprise your favorite market seller or grocery store clerk on your next trip by knowing the names of these veggies and fruits, starting with the most commonly seen ones. This could be a good conversation starter too.

Vegetables and fruits you'll find in Filipino markets and grocery stores.

Filipino/TagalogEnglish

sitaw

long beans

kalabasa

kabocha squash

talong

egplant

bataw

hyacinth beans

sigarilyas

winged beans

upo

bottle gourd

patola

sponge gourd

kamatis

tomato

pinya

pineapple

mansanas

apple

kaymito

star-apple

atis

sugar-apple

makopa

Malay apple

presa

strawberry

guyabano

soursop

siniguelas

Spanish plum

langka

jackfruit

duhat

java plum

kamyas

bilimbi fruit

karamay

gooseberry

kamatsili

monkeypod

mangga

mango

saging

banana

mais

corn

sampalok

tamarind

patani

lima beans

kamote

sweet potato

mustasa

mustard greens

bayabas

guava

repolyo

cabbage

ampalaya

bitter gourd

pechay

bok choy

pipino

pepper

papaya

papaya

sili

pepper

ubas

grapes

saluyot

Egyptian spinach

Pluralizing Nouns

Turning a noun into its plural form in Filipino is easy. This is done by simply adding "mga" before the noun. For instance, Mga kwarto means "rooms" and Mga sando means "undershirts."

Below are more examples of nouns from one of the tables above that were pluralized.

Describing nouns and using markers with nouns will also be discussed next, but for now that you know how to turn Tagalog nouns into their plural forms, try and pluralize the next tables of nouns by using mga.

Examples on using mga in Filipino/Tagalog to turn nouns into plural forms.

Filipino/TagalogEnglish

mga upuan

chairs

mga pulseras

bracelets

mga kwintas

necklaces

mga bahay

houses

mga lamesa

tables

mga upuan

chairs

Different Occupations/Jobs

From doctors and nurses to musicians, sellers, soldiers, and farmers, the table below will show you how to say these different jobs or professions in Tagalog.

Learn the Tagalog words for different occupations, work, or professions.

Filipino/TagalogEnglish

mangingisda

fisherman

doktor

doctor

piloto

pilot

magsasaka

farmer

pulis

police/cop

manganganta

singer

kompositor

composer

piyanista

pianist

artista

an actress/actor

direktor

director

pintor

painter

nars

nurse

sundalo

soldier

inhinyero

engineer

minero

miner

pulitiko

politician

guwardiya

guard

abogado

lawyer

litratista

photographer

drayber

driver

masahista

masseuse

guru/titser

teacher

dentista

dentist

manunulat

writer

Describing Nouns With Adjectives

Learning how to use adjectives in Filipino is as important as learning nouns alone. You will be needing them as you describe the nouns around you every day. Pang-uri is the word for "adjectives" in Filipino. These are often placed before nouns. Two examples of adjectives are bago, which means "new" and malinis, meaning "clean."

Let's use these two adjectives to describe a few of the nouns in the previous tables above. But first, when an adjective ends in a vowel, -ng is used to help link the adjective to the noun and na is used when the adjective ends in a consonant.

  • Bagong singing ("New ring")
  • Bagong relo ("New watch")
  • Bagong pulseras ("New bracelet")
  • Bagong sando ("New undershirt")

Now let's have examples of nouns with the adjective malinis which ends in a consonant.

  • Malinis na sando ("Clean undershirt")
  • Malinis na banyo ("Clean restroom")
  • Malinis na sahig ("Clean floor")
  • Malinis na kwarto ("Clean room")

Nouns and Markers

"ang"

A marker used in Filipino/Tagalog with common nouns is ang. Ang is placed before nouns, and is the equivalent of the English word the. A few examples are given below with nouns from the tables above.

  • Bago ang kotse ng lalaki ("The car of the man is new")

Usually, adjectives are found at the start of sentences in Tagalog. In the example above it is the adjective bago. The marker ang comes next followed by the noun kotse ("car"). Let's look at the next example below.

Malaki ang bahay ng mag-asawa ("The house of the couple is huge")

The marker ang precedes the noun bahay or "house." The adjective malaki or "big" is found at the start of the sentence.

"si/ni"

Si and ni are the markers used with proper nouns, placed before names — for instance, Si Anna, or Si Mrs. Agoncillo.

  • Mabait si Mrs. Agoncillo ("Mrs. Agoncillo is kind")
  • Masaya si Tatay ("Dad is happy")

While si is used with characters like the example above, ni is used in sentences showing ownership.

  • Malaki ang bahay ni Mrs. Agoncillo ("Mrs. Agoncillo's house is huge")
  • Tubig ni Mara ("Mara's water")

This is just a brief discussion so you'll be able to distinguish the difference between how these Tagalog markers are used and be able to use them correctly when conversing with locals.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.