The Chabacano Maridable

A few days ago, I received a question from a reader of this blog on what the word maridable means.  I instantly set out to do some research on this word. While the Chabacano maridable sounds very Spanish, I was shocked to learn that it does not exist in Spanish (or at least in standard Spanish). I was able to find some websites which said that this word is an adjective related to marriage but they were all vague at best.

The Chabacano maridable is a noun meaning 'a married couple'. In Zamboanga city, its people being relatively conservative, you would still find a lot of maridables. Unmarried couples living together are still frowned upon in this part of the Philippines.

A very important grammatical point to take note is that the Chabacano maridable can only be used for MARRIED couples. It cannot be used on just any couple (i.e. unmarried couples).

Here are some sentences using the Chabacano maridable.

Chabacano: Despierto ya ba el maridable?
English: Are the couple awake yet?

Chabacano: Donde ya anda el maridable ayer?
English: Where did the couple go yesterday?

In the two sentences above, the word maridable refers to a specific couple. You will find this kind of talk in a household where there is only ONE married couple. Thus, the husband and wife would be collectively referred to as a maridable.

One can also encounter man maridable. This is the same as the Tagalog mag-asawa meaning 'a married couple'.

According to the Ternateño Chavacano dictionary by Esteban A De Ocampo that I have, this word exists in their Chavacano and it is also defined as a married couple.

If you have any grammar questions, you may post them in the comments section below.