The Tagalogs are one of the largest and most dominant ethnic groups in the country. Most Tagalogs live outside the National Capital Region, in the provinces of Nueva Ecija, Batangas, Quezon, Cavite, Bulacan, Rizal, Laguna, Tarlac, Zambales, Marinduque, Bataan, and Aurora. Significant Tagalog populations are also found in Mindoro and Palawan. The vast majority are followers of Christianity, most of whom are Roman Catholics.
The Tagalog spoken in Manila is regarded as the most standard variation of Tagalog. It is enriched by regional and international influences, considering that the city of Manila is the country’s capital. Metro Manila (National Capital Region), of which Manila city is part, is the national seat of business, commerce, education, and the arts has become the locus of multiculturalism in the Philippines. Thus, Manileño Tagalog is the foundation of Filipino, the country’s official language.
The Tagalog language has many dialectical variations, but all are mutually comprehensible to each other. There are four main dialects in Tagalog; Northern, Central, Southern, and Marinduque. Manileño Tagalog belongs to the Central dialects. In Batangas Tagalog, a southern dialect, it is unusual to speak in Taglish or to instill English terms as it frequently occurs in Manileño Tagalog. The largest contributions to Tagalog vocabulary come from Spanish and English.
Tagalog culture is considered to be the most westernized of all Filipino ethnic groups. Tagalog culture is influenced particularly by Spanish, Chinese and American cultural traditions.