HIGHLIGHT: The Filipino word “kilig,” along with its derivative phrases “kilig moment,” “kiliog factor” and “kilig to the bones,” is now officially part of the Oxford English Dictionary as the term was added on March 2016 in their list of new words.
For many Filipinos, the word “kilig,” which is commonly used to describe that feeling you get when you see or talk to your crush, is difficult to describe, let alone define in English.
Close English equivalents of the word may be “butterflies-in –the-stomach,” or “romantic frisson.”
However, the Oxford English dictionary defines “kilig” both as a noun and an adjective.
As a noun, the Oxford dictionary defines “kilig” as a feeling of “exhilaration or elation caused by an exciting or romantic experience.”
As an adjective, “kilig” means “exhilarated by an exciting or romantic experience; thrilled, elated, gratified,” or “causing or expressing a rush of excitement or exhilaration; thrilling, enthralling, captivating.”
The phrases “kilig to the bones (utterly thrilled or thrilling),”“kilig moment (a thrilling romantic moment),” and “kilig factor (an element which generates exhilaration, excitement or a romantic thrill)” are also defined by Oxford dictionary under the same entry.
Just last year, the Oxford English dictionary included at least 28 commonly used Filipino words, such as “presidentiable (a person who is a likely or confirmed candidate for president),” “carnap (to steal a car),” “barkada (friends you hang out with)” and “balikbayan (a Filipino returning or visiting from overseas).”