(Wednesday Writing) : Indonesian-Filipino’s False Friend


I am not good at Filipino, but I like to explore its similarities with my own language. As we are part of Austronesian grand family, no wonder there are many similarities though we’ve been separated more than centuries or even millenia. Root can’t lie. Besides of the similarities, there are also some false friends.

False friend itself means two likely similar words from two or more languages (or letters in two alphabets) but has different meanings.

So, this is my own list for Indonesian-Filipino false friends below.

Word                             Indonesian                     Filipino
Kaya                                 rich                                   can, able to
Tanaman                        plant                                 garden
Bunga                              flower                               fruit
Halaman                        page, yard                        vegetables
Sarap                               insane, crazy                  relish, delicious
Balita                               toddler                             news
Alam                                nature                               know
Ilang                                 lost (hilang)                   wilderness
Parang                             dagger                              supposedly, field
Asin                                  salty                                  salt
Bukid                               Hill (bukit)                      farm
Sikat                                 brush                                popular
Bata                                   brick stone                     kid
Usap                                  wipe                                  communication
Ulat                                   caterpillar                       report
Salin                                 copy                                  translation

Maybe I miss many words, but that’s what I can share here.
I haven’t seen Pinoy bloggers passing, but it’s okay. One day may they find this posting.

See you,




10 Comments Add yours

  1. blog.lombokceplus says:

    Daftar katanya kayak nya kebalik,

  2. I can see you love languages! I like these kind of comparisons!😃

    1. Filipino is our siblings, but separated thousand years by geography and colonialism

      1. I think Spaniards put some influence there!

      2. Sure…Spanish influenced around 40% of Filipino words. While my language is influenced by Portuguese and Dutch in thousand words.

  3. Filipino blogger here. I find this blog interesting! -Sun

  4. Dawn says:

    Hi! Your blog ‘s looking great. Keep up the good work. Please follow me back. Thank you.

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