A language of Philippines

Alternate Names
Chabacano, Chabakano, Zamboangueño

1,200,000 (Quilis 1996). 155,000 Zamboangueño (Holm 1989); 359,000 Zamboangueño (Rubino 2008); 27,800 Caviteño; 3,750 Ternateño (1975 census); 5,470 Cotabato Chavacano (Wurm and Hattori 1981).


Mindanao, Zamboanga and Basilan provinces, Kabasalan, Siay, Margosatubig, Ipil, Malangas, Lapuyan, Buug, Tungawan, Alicia, Isabela, Lamitan, Maluso, Malamawi, and Cotabato city; Cavite, Ternate, and Ermita near Manila. Speakers in 60 of 66 provinces (1970 census).

Language Maps
Language Status

4 (Educational).


Caviteño, Cotabato Chavacano (Cotabateño), Davaweño Zamboangueño (Abakay Spanish, Davao Chavacano, Davaoeño, Davaweño), Ermitaño (Ermiteño), Ternateño (Ternateño Chavacano), Zamboangueño (Chavacano).


Accusative actancy structure.

Language Use

Davaweño Zamboangueño dialect may have no remaining speakers. Ermiteño is extinct; Zamboangueño, Caviteño, and Cotabateño are still used. Most domains. All ages. Positive attitudes. Nearly all also use Filipino [fil]. Also use Cebuano [ceb], Tausug [tsg]. Used as L2 by Balangingih Sama [sse], Central Sama [sml], Yakan [yka].

Language Development
Literacy rate in L1: 80%. Literacy rate in L2: 80%. Taught in primary schools. Poetry. Radio programs. Films. TV. Dictionary. Grammar. NT: 1981.

Braille script [Brai]. Latin script [Latn], primary usage.

Other Comments

A creole with predominantly Spanish vocabulary and Philippine-type grammatical structure. Christian.