Batanic languages

Bashiic, Ivatanic
Batanes and Orchid Island
Linguistic classification:


Glottolog: bata1315[1]

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.


There are three languages:[2]

Moriguchi (1983) classifies the Batanic languages as follows.

According to Paul Jen-kuei Li (2000),[3] 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 Northern Philippine languages. However, Ross (2005) found that they are not demonstrably related to any particular branch of Malayo-Polynesian, and so may constitute a primary branch of their own.


  1. Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin; Bank, Sebastian, eds. (2016). "Batanic". Glottolog 2.7. Jena: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.
  2. Malcolm Ross, 2005, "The Batanic Languages in Relation to the Early History of the Malayo-Polynesian Subgroup of Austronesian""Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2012-03-22. Retrieved 2012-10-15.
  3. Li, P.J.-K. 2000, "Subgrouping of the Batanic languages", 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.


  • 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.
  • Ross, Malcolm (2005). "The Batanic languages in relation to the early history of the Malayo-Polynesian subgroup of Austronesian." Journal of Austronesian Studies 1/2:1-24.
  • Shirahihara, K., Y. Aoyagi, and M. Koomoto. 1983. Batan island and northern Luzon: Archaeological, ethnographical, and linguistic survey. Kumamoto: University of Kumamoto Press.
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