Baybayin is a pre-Filipino writing system from the islands known as the “Philippines”. Baybayin comes from the word “baybay”, which literally means “spell”. You may know the script by the incorrect term of Alibata that was coined by Paul Versoza in the 1920’s. It was named after the first 3 characters of the Arabic alphabet, Alif, Ba and Ta. Our indigenous scripts have roots in India, not the Middle East. It’s speculated that Versoza wanted something that sounded like alphabet (Alpha-Beta) even though he knew it was called Baybayin. While Alibata is just a misnomer of the term, there’s a practical reason why you should stay away from using it and educate others. When you Google Alibata, the results are old, lacking information, provide no context and sometimes incorrect. There are no authorities that use the term.
Today, this ancient script is being resurrected thanks to young soul searching Filipinos.
Most Baybayin art on this website is by me unless noted. Since it’s my own handwriting, it will be different from what has become the standard Baybayin fonts created by Paul Morrow. Just like any writing system, learn the basics then make it your own style.
As of May 2011, I’m working on a documentary, mobile “translation” application, new online “translator”, online school, new book and lectures/workshops.
Any contributions, rants, corrections and etc can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.