In my search to find a good reference book for my Bisaya studies (currently suspended), I found only a couple of dictionaries. The most common one I came across was only intended to go from English to Cebuano, not from Cebuano to English. Not only are Cebuano dictionaries difficult to find here in the States, they are pretty expensive, too. I guess that’s they way it is with dictionaries in general, but it’s not in my budget unless it was very well done and comprehensive.

There are a number of excellent online dictionaries that provide both English to Cebuano and Cebuano to English. I find that for the most part these meet my needs. They are being updated on an ongoing basis and should eventually be as complete as any of the hard copy books that have been published, since essentially that is where the material is coming from.

Here is a list of a least some of the more robust online Cebuano dictionaries that I have found:


Thankfully there is still available a hard copy of the best Cebuano to English dictionary in PDF format (this is the same dictionary as the online 3rd link above). Here are the free downloads (public domain) of the “A Dictionary of Cebuano Visayan” by John U. Wolff courtesy of Cornell University. Please note these files are PDFs and around 50 MB each, so if you are on a slow connection, you may want to go get a cup of coffee or tea:



Copyright © by Cornell University. Copyright is claimed until 1982. Thereafter, all portions of this work covered by this copyright will be in the public domain. Distributed in the Philippines by the Linguistic Society of the Philippines, and outside of the Philippines by the Southeast Asia Program, Cornell University.
The work was developed under a contract with the United States Office of Education, Department of Health, Education and Welfare. However, the contract does not necessarily reflect the position or policy of that agency, and no official endorsement of these materials should be inferred. Publication of this work was aided by a grant from the South- east Asia Program, Cornell University and by The Asia Society, New York City.

For those interested in a more visual/aural vocabulary training of Bisaya, please check out my Bisaya flash cards.

Updated 8/5/2013

Anki Bisaya Phrasebook Flashcards