Origins of the Chabacano Debe

The word for debt in Chabacano is debe.

This word can be used both as a noun and as a verb. When used as a verb, add the prefix man (for future tense, tan (for present tense), and yan (for past tense) before the word debe to turn it into a verb. This word is pronounced without any stresses.

Here are some examples using the Chabacano debe (noun and verb).

Chabacano: Tiene ba tu debe na mi hermana?
English: Do you owe my sister anything? (word for word translation is do you have any debts from my sister?)

Chabacano: Porque tu pirmi tan debe?
English: Why do you always (have to) take out loans?

Chabacano: Cuando tu paga el debe tuyo conmigo?
English: When will you pay your debts to me?

Note that the debe being discussed in this post is different from the debe meaning one ought to.

In Spanish, the word debe means debit (which means an entry recording an amount owed, listed on the left-hand side or column of an account). The more common word (I think) for debt is deuda.

The Spanish verb deber means to owe someone something and this is most probably where the Chabacano debe came from.

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