Monday, July 28, 2008

Philippines - A Cryptid Farm

The Philippines has a colorful menagerie of cryptids that have endured over the ages. From orb-like beings to humanoid creatures, name it, we have it. Here's a partial list of some of the cryptids and mythological beings that I can recall from the top of my mind:

It is worthy to note that to some extent, some of these cryptids seem to share a common linguistic, if not cultural origin with those of our Southeast Asian neighbors. Although the meaning might be different, there are some near-cognates among the many words used for some of the famous cryptids we have here and elsewhere in Southeast asia. Our very own manananggal has a counterpart called Penanggal or Penanggalan in Malaysia. The root word of both words would be the Filipino "Tanggal" and Malaysian "Tanggal" which means "to detach." Other phonetic parallels would be the Philippine "Tianak/Tiyanak" and the Malay "Pontianak."

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