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Batanic languages

Bashiic, Ivatanic
Batanes and Orchid Island
Linguistic classificationAustronesian

The Batanic languages (sometimes also called Bashiic or Ivatanic) are a dialect cluster of the Austronesian language family. They are spoken on Babuyan Island, just north of Luzon; three of the Batanes Islands, between the Philippines and Taiwan; and on Orchid Island off southern Taiwan.

The varieties in the Philippines are called Ivatan (also spelled Ibatan), or are named Babuyan, Batan, or Itbayat after their islands, while the variety of Taiwan is called Yami or Tao.

Proto-Batanic has been reconstructed by Yang (2002).[2]


There are three languages:[3]

Moriguchi (1983) classifies the Batanic languages as follows.

  • Proto-Vasayic
    • Itbayaten
    • Vasay
    • (branch)
      • Babuyan, Isamorong
      • Yami: Iraralay, Imorod

According to Paul Jen-kuei Li (2000),[4] Yami is most closely related to Itbayat. Among the Batanic languages, Iraralay is the most conservative (Li 2000).

The Batanic languages are frequently included with the Philippine languages. However, there is no full consensus on this, and some consider them a primary branch of the Malayo-Polynesian languages.[3]


  1. ^ Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2017). "Batanic". Glottolog 3.0. Jena, Germany: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.
  2. ^ Yang, Doris Hsiao-Fang (楊曉芳). 2002. Subgrouping and reconstruction of Batanic languages (巴丹語言的分群與擬測). MA thesis. Taichung, Taiwan: Providence University.
  3. ^ a b Ross, Malcolm (2005). "The Batanic Languages in Relation to the Early History of the Malayo-Polynesian Subgroup of Austronesian" (PDF). Journal of Austronesian Studies. 1 (2). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2012-03-22. Retrieved 2012-10-15.
  4. ^ Li, P.J.-K. 2000, "Subgrouping of the Batanic languages",[1] in The Fifth International Symposium on Languages and Linguistics, Hochiminh City, pp. 175-176. Vietnam National University, Ho Chi Minh City University of Social Sciences and Humanities.


  • Blench, Roger. 2015. A new look at Bashiic, a divergent subgroup of Malayopolynesian. Paper presented at 13-ICAL, Academia Sinica, Taipei, Taiwan, 18-23 July, 2015.
  • Li, Paul Jen-kuei (2001). The Dispersal of the Formosan Aborigines in Taiwan. Language and Linguistics 2.1:271-278.
  • Moriguchi, Tsunekazu. 1983. "A preliminary report on Ivatan dialects". In ;;Batan Island and Northern Luzon: Archaeological, Ethnographical and Linguistic Survey;;, 205-253. Kumamoto: Kumamoto University.
  • Shirahihara, K., Y. Aoyagi, and M. Koomoto. 1983. Batan island and northern Luzon: Archaeological, ethnographical, and linguistic survey. Kumamoto: University of Kumamoto Press.