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The term Tagisla came from the endonym Taga-isla ("Island dweller"), composed of tagá- ("native of" or "from") and isla ("island"). Linguists such as Sammie Sha're and Robert Hammond speculate that the Tagisli and other Central Arcturian ethnolinguistic groups originated in Yasteria major.
Possible words of Old Tagilsa origin are attested in the Santa Rosa Bronzeplate from the eleventh century, which is largely written in Old Tagisla. The first known complete book to be written in Tagisla is the Meri Lauluan Book of Tribes, printed in 1593. The book was written by Tiaro Tanashiri in an attempt to Staynicize the ancient record of all Tagisla tribes in the archipelago.