Origins of the Chabacano Entoja

In the Philippines, we seem to believe that pregnant women have food cravings that are brought about by their pregnancies. In Tagalog, we call this paglilihi (noun). it can be green mangoes, peanuts, or crabs, whatever the pregnant woman wants, she should get, or so we've been told.

Scientifically though, paglilihi is just attributed to the narcissistic tendencies that a pregnant woman would have.

In the Chabacano de Zamboanga, we call this entoja (verb). This comes from the Spanish antojar which means to crave something. Interestingly, there are different words connected to the Chabacano entoja depending on which Chabacano dictionary you consult. Camins (1999), has the words entojada (a pregnant woman with strong food cravings), entojau (a person with strong food cravings), and entojo (cravings). Santos (2010), meanwhile, has the verb entoja, entojao, and entojo.

Today though, it is only the verb entoja which is used a lot in the Chabacano language. Mostly, the word entoja is used to refer to the strong and sometimes strange food cravings of a pregnant woman. In all honesty, I never knew that this word could be used to refer to the food cravings of a man or a non pregnant woman. It's also unclear to me if the young people today think that this word can only be applied to non pregnant persons and men. It is also strange that the verb entoja is not included in the Camins dictionary so it seems like it is a recent word that evolved from the word entojada.

Here are some example sentences:

Chabacano: Ta entoja si Maria, prinada le.
English: Maria is having strong food cravings, she is pregnant.

Chabacano: Compra mangga hilaw kay ta entoja si Fely.
English: Buy green mangoes because Fely is craving for them.

I asked my Bien Chabacano uncle about this word and he told me that for non pregnant persons and men, you can use the noun entojo. Since entojo is a noun, one should add ta + man (tan) or ya + man (yan) before it when being used in a sentence.

Chabacano: Tan entojo man yo come Endulsao este pascua.
English: I feel like eating Endulsao this Christmas.

If you are a young Chabacano speaker, you may not have known this. So the next time you crave for a certain food, you could say tan entojo yo come (something) instead of tan crave yo come (something).

I know that we've all been complaining that we don't know how to say certain things in Chabacano, so here's actually an opportunity to say one of the things we, youngsters, frequently like to say, in Chabacano. I'm sure it'll sound weird at first but the more you use it, the less weird it will sound. Mixing English with Chabacano may sound cooler to some, but can we, at least, make an effort to make Chabacano work?


  1. tiene yo pregunta Jerome, ¿Cosa ta llama con el gente quien ta Entojá?

    Yo sabe que el palabra "Entojá" es verbo y su adverbo es "entojando".
    mientras el "Entojo" o na español es "Antojo" es nombre quiere decir "capricho, gusto de, etc."

    el Entojado o Entojao es el paso verbo del Entojá, y el Entojada es el Adjetivo que ta definí con una mujer que su entojada es umal.

  2. ¿Cosa ta llama con el gente quien ta Entojá?

    Segun na diccionario de Camins, entojau.

  3. El past tense del entoja, ya entoja. :D

  4. dol jendeh man . . .
    el Entojau o Entojao o Entojado es el Paso Verbo (Verb Past Tense) del Entoja.

    Jendeh gaja puede "Entojadora o Entojador"?

    cay ta puede man tambien kita habla como:

    Taqui ya el entojao mujer por eso mas bueno desaparece ya kita todo. ^_^

    este... cosa el sonor de este diptongo "au"? porque sabe lang yo del "ao" como /aw/.

  5. base na mi observación, todo Diccionario que tiene kita ahora que de Felino y de Camins jendeh ta explica bien el cada palabra si este ba un Conjunción, Interjección, Verbo, Pronombre, nombre, Preposición, Adjetivo, etcétera..

    Ojala si tiene mas nuevo lingüístico quien hay crea nuevo Diccionario era aquel bien detallado gayot. ^_^