Origins of the Chabacano Desma

Growing up, I've always known that the Chabacano word for 'to faint' is desma. However, if you check Chabacano dictionaries, you will not find this word. The word that is listed in Chabacano dictionaries is desmaya. This comes from the Spanish desmayarse.

When I asked other people in their 50s, they all agreed that desma is the word for fainting and not desmaya. I figured that there are only a very few number of Chabacano speakers who still say desmaya and they must be in their 80s already or even dead.

Here are some sentences using the Chabacano word desma.

Chabacano: Saca agua, ya desma si mama!
English: Get some water, mom fainted!

Chabacano: Almorza anay tu, baka desma tu de hambre.
English: Have some breakfast first, you might faint from hunger.

Here are are some posts in social media that I found using the word desma.

Malas bos, nuay yo desma..

Nuay yo kosa ya intende kunila yan nosebleed yo byen kere yo desma

byen kere gat yo desma kunikaw noy

Kung sabe lang bo, baka desma gad bo

Pasa pa lang nga ka ta desma desma ya gad mga hente what more if kanta ka

Unsurprisingly, I wasn't able to find any ramblings on social media using desmaya.

What about you? In your Chabacano, do you say desma or desmaya?

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