NAGA CITY---A new reference book on Bicol linguistics is now published as Jose Fernando Obias, veteran writer, launched his book titled “The English-Standard Bikol” last Saturday September 14, at the Antigua Restaurant, Gaudensa Institute Center, in Jacob St., Brgy. Bagumbayan Sur, this city.
The book launch was sponsored by the Diverse Initiatives for Bicolano Artists (DIBA), a cultural group that pioneered the annual Voyadores Festival in 1995.
In his message, he introduced the book as the primary guide for standardized writing and reading in Bikol, including terminologies which are borrowed from, and spelled in Spanish language.
He claimed that the content of the book is derived from the original Bikol Dictionary of Fray Marcos de Lisboa, a Franciscan priest and Portuguese historian, who documented the language of the Bikol natives between 1582 to 1619.
The book consists of 150 Bikol words with English equivalent, including Buhinon, Sorsogon Bikol, and Catanduanes Bikol, printed at Goldprint Publishing in Naga City.
Meanwhile, he urged that a language cannot develop if it is mixed with other languages.
He said that mixing languages kills a language, like the ancient language of Bicol which gave identity to its people.
He called on those that buy his book to share the latter to fellow Bicolanos, especially the so-called Millennials or today’s youth who are obsessed with speaking in Tagalog interspersed with English words.
At the same event, famous Bicolano film critic and Bicol Mail columnist Tito Valiente served as the reactor after the author’s statements.
AUTHOR’S ACCOMPLISHMENT. Jose Fernando Obias (third to the left), former editor of various publications and St. John Baptist Catholic Media Awards 2005 recipient, autographs a copy of his new published book titled “The English-Standard Bikol Vocabulary”. (From right) Edna S. Tejada, Department of Trade and Industry (DTI)-CamSur Provincial Director, Dra. Malou Sarmiento, and his beloved wife Jasmin (leftmost). NPA