Simple Sentences

The Existential Sentence

May / mayroon sentences are often identified as existential sentences. Existentials express:

  • the existence of something:

    • May Diyos. (God exists; or, There is God.)

  • the existence of something somewhere:

    • May giyera sa Asya. (There is war in Asia.)

  • the existence of something owned or possessed:

    • Mayroon siyang pera. (He has money.)

Mayroon is a combination of may and roon, the latter being a locative demonstrative. Wala is the negative form of may / mayroon. It means non-possession or non-existence.

Walang Diyos.

  • There is no God.

Walang giyera sa Asya.

  • There is no war in Asia.

Wala siyang pera.

  • He has no money.

May is always followed immediately by the object phrase. With mayroon, the object phrase may occur before or after the possessor.

  • May alipunga si Alberto.
  • May masamang alipunga si Alberto.

The possessor is always an ang phrase.

  • May konsiyensiya ang Gobernador.

When the existential expresses the existence of something in some location, it is subjectless.

  • May tao sa silong.
  • May yelo sa bundok.

When it expresses the existence of something owned or possessed, it has a subject, which is the possessor.

  • May libro si Carol.
  • May kalukohan si Tarcila.

When the object whose existence is asserted is a nominalized verb, the existential may or may not have a subject depending on the focus of the verb. An actor focus verb requires no subject, whereas an object focus verb requires a subject.

  • *May bumili ng saging.
  • **May biniling mangga si Dante.
  • *Actor-focus verb has no subject.
  • **Object-focus verb has a subject.