The Tagalog POD

Note: To understand why we use the term POD, see The Tagalog focus, subject or Point of Departure (POD).

The Point of Departure (POD) is the starting point of a basic sentence. It is the object, person, idea etc. that the speaker thinks about before or as he or she begins the sentence.

The POD is picked by the speaker from among the things that he or she assumes the listener knows. Generally, things assumed to be known to the listener are those that—


Mahaba’ ang email.

The email is long.

Puti’ ang dingding.

The wall is white.

Bilog ang mundo.

The world is round.

Mammal ang balyena.

Whales (in general) are mammals.

Italyano si Da Vinci.

Da Vinci was Italian.

Pinsan ni Mary si John.

John is Mary’s cousin.*

Pinsan ni John si Mary.

Mary is John’s cousin.*

* Even though these sentences mean the same thing, their PODs are different.

Please respect copyright. Learn more

This grammar guide is part of the Learning Tagalog Course.
Do you want to speak Tagalog fluently?

Try the course

“I got a copy of your book and I love it. It’s really the best I’ve come across.”
— Martin Kelemenis, Geneva, Switzerland