The Chavacano de Ternate Criatura

Ay, naku! Ya kái el criatura na escalera.

This is a sentence I found in a book titled The Ternateños written by Esteban A De Ocamp. It is written in the Chavacano de Ternate dialect.

I found this sentence quite funny mainly because of the word criatura. I couldn’t believe that the word for a kid in the Chavacano de Ternate is criatura. Criatura in Spanish literally means creature.

I was very surprised however when a Mexican friend used this word to mean children (offspring) when we were chatting online. So I did some research on this word and it turns out that criatura can also mean 'a child', or 'an infant' in Spanish.

This word, however (to the best of my knowledge) never appears in the Chabacano de Zamboanga.

For everyone's benefit, the sentence that appears at the beginning of this entry means 'oh my, the child fell from the stairs'.

Camins' Chabacano dictionary does not have the word criatura. Santos' dictionary does have it and defines it as creature.