Is the "Ay" Marker in Tagalog the Same as the English Verb "To be"?

One of the most common markers in the Tagalog language is ay. It may appear as if ay  is the equivalent of the English verb "to be", because, for example, the literal translation of a phrase like ako ay Pilipino is "I am  Filipino". However, in reality, far from being a verb, let alone the verb "to be", which doesn't really exist in Tagalog, the function of ay is simply to invert the order of a phrase, and in the example above ako ay Pilipino is merely the inverted form of Pilipino ako. In other words, because in Tagalog there is no such thing as the verb "to be", such phrases as "I am Italian", "she is beautiful" or "Mario is a doctor" in Tagalog have no verb and are literally rendered as "Italian I" ("Italiano ako"), "beautiful she" ("maganda siya") and "doctor Mario" ("doktor si Mario"). The "ay" marker simply switches the order of such phr

Personal and Demonstrative Pronouns in Tagalog

 There are three types of pronouns in Tagalog:

Ang pronouns (personal and demonstrative)

Ng pronouns (personal and demonstrative)

Sa pronouns (personal and demonstrative)


These are the pronouns in focus, or, in other words, the pronouns that are used with mag-, -um-, maka-, makapag- and some ma- verbs

Personal (panao)

Ako: I

Ikaw (used at the beginning of the sentence)/ka (used in other parts of the sentence): you

Siya: he/she

Kami (we exclusive: excludes the hearer or the person being addressed)/tayo (we inclusive): we

Kayo: You

Sila: They

Example: pumunta ako sa bahay ni Mario, pumunta ka sa bahay ko etc.

Demonstrative (pamatlig)

Ito this

Iyan that (near the hearer or the person being addressed)

Iyon that (far from the speaker and the hearer)

Example: ano ba ito? (What is this?), Ano ba iyan/iyon? (What is that?)


These are the pronouns that are not in focus and go with ng verbs (i-, -in, ma-, -an)

Personal (panao)

Ko my

Mo your

Niya his/her

Namin (esclusive)/natin (inclusive) our

Ninyo Your

Nila their

Demonstrative (pamatlig)

Nito (of) this

Niyan (of) that (near the hearer)

Niyon (of) that (far from the hearer)

They indicate


Example: ang bahay ko=my house

Direct object

Example: bumili ako (focus) nito (not in focus)=I bought this

Actor not in focus

Example: binili ko ang kotse=the car is what (the car is in focus) I (actor not in focus) bought


Personal (panao)

Akin me/mine

Iyo you/yours

Kanya he/his

Amin (exclusive)/Atin (inclusive) we/our

Inyo You/Your

Kanila they/their

These pronouns have four functions:


Example: ang aking bahay (my house)


Examples: pupunta ako sa iyo=I am going to you (or your house), ibinibigay ko ang libro sa kanya=I am giving him the book


Example: ang susi ng kotse ay nasa akin=the car key is with me

Demonstrative (pamatlig)

Dito/rito here

Diyan/riyan there (near the hearer)

Doon/roon (far from the hearer)

These also indicate


Example: pupunta ako doon=I'll go there


Example: bumili ako ng regalo para dito=I bought a gift for this


Example: dito sa Italya= here in Italy

So these are the various pang-halip (panao=personal at pamatlig=demonstrative) in Tagalog


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