Latagnon, Datagnon
Native toPhilippines
RegionSouthern tip of Mindoro
Ethnicity2,000 (1997)[1]
Native speakers
310 (2010)[1]
  • Santa Teresa
Language codes
ISO 639-3btn

Ratagnon (also translated as Latagnon or Datagnon, and Aradigi) is a regional language spoken by the Ratagnon people, an indigenous group from Occidental Mindoro. It is a part of the Bisayan language family and is closely related to other Philippine languages. Its speakers are shifting to Tagalog. In 2000, there were only two to five speakers of the language. However, in 2010 Ethnologue had reported there were 310 new speakers.[2]


Ratagnon is closely related to the Cuyonon language, a Bisayan language spoken in the Cuyo Archipelago just to the south of Mindoro.[3]

This may be brought about by migrations of Cuyonons to the southern tip of Mindoro, akin to their migrations to mainland Palawan, a very much gradual process. It could be inferred that these migrations happened at an earlier date before the migrations to mainland Palawan started (around the mid- to late 19th century) due to its diversion from the Cuyonon language (Given that Ratagnon descended from an older language spoken in the general area West of Panay, Ratagnon and Cuyonon are classified under Kuyan), whereas the Cuyonon of mainland Palawan, Calamian and that of the Cuyo itself remain the same language with relatively little dialectal difference.[citation needed]


According to the Ethnologue, Ratagnon is spoken in the southernmost extreme tip of Mindoro islands, including the municipalities of Magsaysay and Bulalacao.

Barbian (1977a) lists the following locations.


Barbian (1977) provides lexical and phonological data for Ratagnon.

English Ratagnon Cuyonon Kinaray-a
One Isara Isara Sara
Two Daruwa Darwa Darwa
Three Tatlo Tatlo Tatlo
Four Apat Apat Apat
Five Lima Lima Lima
Six Anum Anem Anem
Seven Pito Pito Pito
Eight Walo Walo Walo
Nine Siyam Siyam Siyam
Ten Napulo Sampulo Pulo

In contrast to Cuyonon, Ratagnon dropped the schwa /ë/ sound, instead opting for a u/o sound. It too borrowed lexical terms from the languages of its Mangyan neighbors and to a lesser extent Spanish It is notable in Barbian's Mangyan – English Vocabulary, 1977 that by that time,[clarification needed] Ratagnon might have already experienced heavy Tagalization, present in words such as 'heart', tagiposon in Cuyonon, albeit puso in Ratagnon, same with Tagalog's puso. The word 'why', ayamo in Cuyonon, is noted as bakit and basi in Ratagnon, bakit (bakin + at) being a loan from Tagalog, and basi, a Hanunuo Ambahan term (hayga being non-Ambahan), perhaps inferring that basi is a loan from Ratagnon, as Ambahans have been known to use archaic Hanunuo terms and loans from various languages, one being Ratagnon. This phenomenon is also observed in the Hanunuo traditions of Urukay, perhaps closely related to the Erekay of the Cuyonons, both being a form of Balagtasan. Ratagnon also has terms specific to the lowland river surroundings which are not present in modern Cuyonon, most of which are borrowings from Hanunuo and Buhid, whereas a few are either archaic Cuyonon terms or innovations made within the Ratagnon language. Aside from the aforementioned differences from the Cuyonon language, the two languages are still very much mutually intelligible.

Differences from Cuyonon include:

The usage of the t sound over the d sound, present in:

t and d
English Ratagnon Cuyonon
fear atlok adlek

Usage of the k sound over the g sound:

k and g
English Ratagnon Cuyonon
land lukta logta

The aforementioned dropping of the schwa for the u sound present in:

u and ë
English Ratagnon Cuyonon
ours (pronoun) kanamun kanamen
mine (pronoun) akun aken
straight matadlong matadleng

The preference for the l over the r sound:

l and r
English Ratagnon Cuyonon
pointed malawis marawis

There are some words that differ in meaning between Cuyonon and Ratagnon; this is most notable in terms specific to their respective surroundings, which has created false friends with almost the same, yet different, meanings.

False Friends
English Ratagnon Cuyonon
to cross from: tabók (one side of the river to another) tabók (to cross from a bigger island to a smaller one, ant. of lekas)
cross tabók (general crossing) lagted
Influences of Tagalog on Ratagnon
English Ratagnon Cuyonon Tagalog
why bakit ayamo bakit
there duonon doto, dogto (archaic) doon
heart puso tagiposon puso
Comparison Chart
English Ratagnon Cuyonon Hanunuo Buhid Tagalog
house balabag balay labag labagan bahay
dog ayam tio idu idu aso
cold maramig maramig maramig magnaw, matiís malamig
plain/flatland ratag/latag/datag latagan/datagan ratag datag patag
body hair bulbol bolbol bulbol ulad balahibo
left wala wala wala, wal'an agwala kaliwa
right kanan
nothing ara ara wala
straight matadlong matadleng matul'id, malawis matadlong, malawis tuwid
ouch aroy aroy adug, adoy adoy aray
here digé digi/dagi dito/diné (Southern Tagalog dialects)
this digé dia/dagi/daya (archaic) ito/aré (Southern Tagalog dialects)
get buul bel kuha
put butang betang lagay
sand baras baras buhangin
town banwa banwa bayan
sing arukay kanta kanta/awit
love song ambalan balitaw harana
cradle song sandaw sandaw oyayi/hele
wilderness talon talonan/talon kagubatan
year dagon dagon taon
happen atabo n/atabo nangyari


  1. ^ a b "Ratagnon".
  2. ^ Ratagnon at Ethnologue.
  3. ^ Zorc 1977.