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Kemdeng, San Vicente, Palawan, Philippines

Title: Kemdeng: A Symbol of Cultural Evolution and Communal Harmony in San Vicente, Palawan
Kemdeng, a quaint barangay located in the municipality of San Vicente, Palawan, has a name steeped in rich cultural significance and an identity deeply rooted in tribal heritage. The Tagbanua tribe, one of the indigenous peoples of Palawan, originally called this area “Paedeng,” meaning “little dog or puppy.” This moniker represents the tribe’s tradition of hunting in the forests with dogs, who were often called by this term in their dialect.
The area’s earliest inhabitants were non-Christian tribes, or Tagbanuas, under the leadership of the late brothers Hipolito Villanueva and Domingo Villanueva, prior to the Second World War. Kemdeng was essentially a bastion of Tagbanua’s cultural practices and lifestyle.
However, the area has also seen linguistic evolution over time. The term “Paedeng” underwent a transformation as it was passed down through generations and exchanged among different communities. As the Agutaynens and Cuyunens mingled with the Tagbanuas, they adopted the term but morphed it into a form that was easier for them to pronounce, thus birthing the term “Kemdeng”. This transformed name has since been formally recognized and is now the official name of the barangay.
Despite the passing of time and the transformation of its name, Kemdeng maintains its traditional values at its core. This barangay, one of the oldest in the municipality, is populated by residents who are renowned for their cooperative, hospitable, and helpful nature. They continue to uphold traditional practices like “Bayanihan” or “Gulpi Mano”, which involve community members coming together to help each other during difficult times or in preparation for an event. These practices embody a spirit of collective resilience and unity, showcasing the essence of community living and embodying the cultural richness of the barangay.
Kemdeng is, therefore, not just a barangay in San Vicente, Palawan; it’s a symbol of cultural evolution and communal harmony that continues to thrive in a rapidly changing world. It represents the resilience of indigenous communities, the adaptability of language and the enduring strength of communal practices that have sustained the people of this region for generations.