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Sunday, 29 June 2008


Thank you very much for visiting my blog for the past few days

Merci beaucoup pour visiter mon blog pour le passé quelques jours.

Muchas gracias por visitar mi blog durante los últimos días.

Grazie mille per la visita
del mio blog per il passato pochi giorni.

Monday, 23 June 2008



June 24 is Araw ng Maynila
that marks the anniversary of the foundation of the City of Manila from the old Maynilad, which was ruled by Rajah Soliman.

Four hundred thirty-seven years ago, on the feast day of Saint John the Baptist, Governor General Miguel Lopez de Legazpi creates a cabildo or town council that consists of 12 aldermen, a secretary, and a public notary for the City of Manila. A court is also established with two judges, two public notaries, and a constable. Through these acts, the formation of the City Government of Manila in the colony of Spain is formalized.

Photo By Wantet on Flickr

While surfing the Internet a while ago, I found two very interesting materials about the "Araw ng Maynila." The first one was the Awit sa Maynila from Pusa's I Heart Manila at The second one was Carmen Guerrero Nakpil's The Untold Story of "Araw ng Maynila" at I am posting them word for word here for your intellectual consumption:

Awit ng Maynila

Tanging Lungsod naming mahal
Tampok ng Silanganan
Patungo sa kaunlaran
At kaligayahan.

Nasa kanya ang pangarap
Dunong, lakas, pag-unlad
Ang Maynila'y tanging Perlas
Ng Bayan ngayo't bukas.

Maynila, O, Maynila
Dalhin mo ang Bandila
Maynila, O, Maynila
At itanghal itong Bansa.

The Untold Story of "Araw ng Maynila"
By Carmen Guerrero Nakpil

Sunday, June 15, 2008

For the last 50 years, the City of Manila has been glad-handing, brass-banding, speechifying and merry-making on the 24th of June as Araw ng Maynila or its Foundation Day. The reason is that on that same day in 1571, Legaspi established a municipal council in what is now Intramuros. The impression on Filipinos and foreigners alike is that a lordly, Spanish conquistador founded the city of Manila late in the 16th century on a primeval swamp at the mouth of the Pasig River populated by naked savages, who had never had a taste of social organization, and were thus set on the path to civilization by a European.

The mostly untold true facts follow (see Tome Pires, Pigafetta, Majul, W.H. Scott and Gaspar de San Agustin):

1. The natives of the island of Luzon, including Batangas, Bulacan, Pampanga were traders, investors, mercenaries, seafarers called Luzones, operating in the commerce triangle of Southeast Asia between Canton, Malacca and Timor, as early as the 14th century. They owned ships, underwrote large-scale export ventures, and were called “discoverers”, for their sea-faring skills. They probably taught the vaunted Spanish explorer, Urdaneta, his skills in negotiating the China Sea. As warriors, “the most warlike and valiant in these parts”, the Luzones fought in Malacca, the Batak-Menangkabaw army, in Ayuthia under the command of a Filipino called Sapetu Diraja. Notable Luzones included Regimo and Surya Diraja were magnates and plantation owners, selling shares in their gold, sandalwood and cotton exports to illiterate Portuguese in Malacca.

2. The chief city in Luzon was Maynila located at the mouth of the Pasig River, ruled by 3 Muslim kinglets: Ache (or Raha Matanda) a grandson of Sultan Bolkiah of Borneo, Raha Sulayman, Ache’s nephew, and Raha Lakandula of Tondo. There were local Taga-ilog chieftains, the datu of surrounding fiefdoms.

3. “The town all around this bay”, says a Spanish chronicle quoted by O.D. Corpus in The Roots of the Filipino Nation, “was really marvelous. It was tilled and cultivated. The slopes were smooth. So excellent indications have not been seen in this land. The town was situated on the bank of the river, defended by a palisade. Within were many warriors and the shore outside was crowded with many people. Pieces of artillery stood at the gates, guarded by bombardiers, linstock in hand.” Mention was made of 40 neighboring villages, 4 Chinese trading junks in the harbor, 40 married Chinese couples and 20 Japanese.

4. As Legaspi’s shipmaster, Martin de Goiti, attacked Maynila with 120 Spanish soldiers and 300 Cebuano allies in May 1570, but Raha Sulayman routed them with his bronze cannon and poisoned arrows, and de Goiti withdrew, via Cavite and Mindoro to the Spanish headquarters at Cebu. The next year, in June 1571, the Spanish tried again. This time the Adelantado Miguel Lopez de Legaspi came himself, with 3 more ships sent as reinforcements from Mexico. He sent a gift to Raha Matanda and sought a conciliatory audience with Sulayman but another force of Tagalog gathered at the estero of Bankusay in Tondo and engaged the Spanish armada. The day went to the superior firepower of the Spanish because Sulayman’s foundry, warehouses and armory had been reduced to ashes, some documents say by the Cebuanos, others by Sulayman himself.

5. After winning a battle over an estero, Legaspi claimed conquest and Spanish sovereignty over the city of Maynila, the island of Luzon and the entire archipelago, naming them “The New Castilla” and bestowing a city charter with municipal councilors, a plan for a plaza, two grand houses and 150 smaller houses and a project for the distribution of land. All of this was unilateral paperwork in a foreign European language which no one else understood or attested, because he continued to recognize Sulayman and Lakandula as Lords and Masters of Maynila and Tondo. Every so often a fleet of Tagalog datus would come sailing down the river in long boats to challenge the Spanish garrison which had to depend for its meals on the Chinese or the Tagalog.

These were the conditions in Maynila on 24 June 1571. Knowing them, would anyone venture to say that this was the day life began for Manila and the Manilans?

This year a better perspective will endow Araw ng Maynila, one closer to historical truths. A parade of Filipino Muslims, in their traditional garb of malong and veils for the women, and pants, jackets and kris for the men will march together from the mosque in Quiapo to the tip of Fort Santiago, the site of Sulayman’s palisaded palace. It will be joined by school youth dressed in Tagalog finery of the period to represent the datu and the Tagalog population. The highest-ranking Filipino Muslim, Adel Tamano, president of the Pamantasan ng Maynila will preside over the ceremonies and speak on the historical background of Araw ng Maynila. A flower wreath will then be laid on the grave of the Adelantado Legaspi in San Agustin church in remembrance of his role in the development of Manila. At the end, we should all feel better and be much less ignorant.


Totanes, Henry S. "A Timeline of Philippine History." In Kasaysayan: The Story of the Filipino People. (Vol. 10). Hong Kong: Asia Publishing Company Limited, 1998.



Kapampangans defend themselves against Dutch invaders in Abukay, now Abucay, Bataan. Nearly 200 Kapampangans died, while 40 others, together with the Spanish alcalde mayor and two Dominican priests were imprisoned inside Batavia, a ship of the Dutch East India Company.

Photo By My Visita Iglesia on Flickr


Two hundred twenty-two years later, Carlos Maria de la Torre y Nava Cerrada begins his term as governor general of the Philippines. He is perceived to be a liberal, a product of the 1868 Spanish Revolution. Filipino and Spanish liberals welcome his arrival.

Governor General De la Torre promulgated the abolition of flogging as a punishment of native soldiers who abandon their posts. He replaced this with one month imprisonment.

De la Torre served as the governor general of the country until April 14, 1871 when King Amadeo of Spain appointed Don Rafael de Izquierdo y Gutierrez as the new governor general on January 18, 1871.


______. "Abucay, Bataan." In Wikipedia: The Free Encyclopedia. Internet: Available URL:,_Bataan. June 21, 2008.

______. "Batavia." In Wikipedia: The Free Encyclopedia. Internet: Available URL: June 13, 2008.

Totanes, Henry S. "A Timeline of Philippine History." In Kasaysayan: The Story of the Filipino People. (Vol. 10). Hong Kong: Asia Publishing Company Limited, 1998.



Bishop Miguel Lino de Espeleta of Cebu, son of a Spaniard in the Philippines, is appointed temporary governor general. He
served as the governor general of the Philippines until July 9, 1761, when the royal order dated September 26, 1760, designating Archbishop Manuel Rojo del Rio y Vieyra of Manila as the temporary governor general, was received in Manila.

Photo By Neiltot on Flickr

Archbishop Rojo was born in Tala, Nueva España. He arrived in Manila on July 14, 1759 to serve as archbishop. He assumed office on July 22 and claimed that he should have charge of the military government because of the royal decree of succession, which provides for a vacancy in the post of governor general. But Bishop Espeleta remain in command of the government at that time.

Photo By Neiltot on Flickr


Totanes, Henry S. "A Timeline of Philippine History." In Kasaysayan: The Story of the Filipino People. (Vol. 10). Hong Kong: Asia Publishing Company Limited, 1998.

Saturday, 21 June 2008



King Philip II of Spain orders Miguel Lopez de Legazpi to conquer the entire Philippine archipelago and its islands in the name of Spain. He also orders Legazpi to serve as the first governor general of the islands. Legazpi moves his bedraggled colony to the island of Panay, where better food supply is available and where his settlement would be better protected from attacks.

Photo By
By Gibbster on Flickr


Five years later, King Philip II approves of the name given by Governor General Legazpi to the City of Manila: Insigne e Siempre Leal Ciudad (Most Noble and Ever Loyal City), and to the Island of Luzon: Nuevo Reino de Castila (New Kingdom of Spain).

Photo By Bee Boy on Flickr

Earlier, on August 20, 1572, Governor General Legazpi dies a poor man in Manila. His remains are interred in the San Agustin Church in the walled city of Intramuros.

Alixander Haban Escote on Picable


Totanes, Henry S. "A Timeline of Philippine History." In Kasaysayan: The Story of the Filipino People. (Vol. 10). Hong Kong: Asia Publishing Company Limited, 1998.



Fray Domingo de Salazar, OP, who arrived in Manila on July 1, 1581 together with other Jesuits and who erected the episcopal see of Manila, suffragan to Mexico by virtue of the papal bull of Pope Gregory XIII in 1578 calling for the establishment of the episcopal see and the construction of the Manila Cathedral, informs King Philip II of Spain of the hardships being endured by the natives under the Spanish conquistadores and encomenderos. Because of these abuses, many natives flee from their towns to escape the Spaniards.

Fray Salazar became the first bishop of Manila and the prime defender of the indios against the abuses of the
conquistadores and encomenderos.

By Turnon Warrior on Flickr


Ten years later, Gomez Perez Dasmariñas, who served as the governor general of the Philippines from June 1, 1590 to October 25, 1593, sends a letter to King Philip II of Spain, complaining about the abuses being committed by friars against the native Filipinos.

Governor General Dasmariñas oversaw the completion of Intramuros and the construction of Fort Santiago, which was named after Saint James, slayer of moors, at the mouth of the Manila Bay and at the southern edge of the Pasig River in Manila.

By Mell Zamora on Flickr

While their ship was docked at the Sulphur Point in Batangas on October 25, 1593, Governor General
Dasmariñas and other Spaniards were killed in their sleep by Chinese pirates sailing in their junks, led by P'an Ho-Wu.


Totanes, Henry S. "A Timeline of Philippine History." In Kasaysayan: The Story of the Filipino People. (Vol. 10). Hong Kong: Asia Publishing Company Limited, 1998.



Zamboanga Governor Fernando de Bobadilla receives Governor General Sabiniano Manrique de Lara's order. Governor Bobadilla then order his men in Iligan, Ternate, and Calamianes to abandon their missions and hasten to Manila, where a puny force of 600 men waits for the Chinese attack.

Photo By
Jovie Naval on Flickr


Totanes, Henry S. "A Timeline of Philippine History." In Kasaysayan: The Story of the Filipino People. (Vol. 10). Hong Kong: Asia Publishing Company Limited, 1998.



Sultan Azim un-Din and other prisoners arrive in Manila. A few other prisoners are left behind to be confirmed in a Cavite fort. The sultan and his immediate family are confined in a small hut within the Fort Santiago compound.

Photo By D2digital on Flickr

Who is Sultan Azim un-Din?


Totanes, Henry S. "A Timeline of Philippine History." In Kasaysayan: The Story of the Filipino People. (Vol. 10). Hong Kong: Asia Publishing Company Limited, 1998.



An order commands the importation of larger quantities of Chinese silk for Mexico, a development that improves trade in Manila.

Photo By
MJM on Flickr


Totanes, Henry S. "A Timeline of Philippine History." In Kasaysayan: The Story of the Filipino People. (Vol. 10). Hong Kong: Asia Publishing Company Limited, 1998.

Monday, 16 June 2008



In a letter, Governor Gonzalo Ronquillo de Peñalosa reports to King Philip II the state of affairs in the newly colonized Philippine islands, particularly the expedition sent, the improving Christianization of native Filipinos, and the financial matters of the new colonial government. He offers suggestions on ways to strengthen Spanish foothold in the island by making the necessary arrangement for the missionaries, dominating the Portuguese in Macau and in Moluccas, and amending a decree to liberate Indian slaves. He ends his letter by asking that the appointment of his stepson Antonio Jufre as treasurer be confirmed and that he be awarded a repatimiento. Governor Peñalosa, who ruled the Philippines from 1580-1583, recommends the establishment of a convent in every town and every city. He establishes the towns of Arevalo in Panay and Nueva Segovia in the Ilocos.

Yahoo! Image


Peñalosa, Gonzalo Ronquillo. "Letter from Peñalosa to Felipe II." In The Philippine Islands, 1493-1898, translated from the originals, edited and annotated by Emma Helen Blair and James Alexander Robertson, with historical introduction and additional notes by Edward Gaylord Bourne. Cleveland, Ohio: A.H. Clark Company, 1903-9. Vol. 5, 1582-1583. Pp. 23-33.

Peñalosa, Gonzalo Ronquillo. "Letter from Peñalosa to Felipe II." In Philippine Studies at Your Fingertips. Internet. Available URL:

Totanes, Henry S. "A Timeline of Philippine History." In Kasaysayan: The Story of the Filipino People. (Vol. 10). Hong Kong: Asia Publishing Company Limited, 1998.

Thursday, 12 June 2008


The colorful print age, touted by Marshall McLuhan, was the forerunner of the industrial revolution. Media scholars and researchers attributed the industrial revolution as the beginning of the modern world, lending social and personal alteration. And, if a modern world then is gaged by the robustness of the newspaper industry and its audience, then the
Philippines still remains as a developing country.

In the Philippines, newspapers have two types: tabloids and broadsheets. Both are distinguished in terms of size, circulation, and themes and ideologies.

A tabloid's spread is roughly 22 inches long. Circulation-wise, broadsheets are no match to tabloids. In 2003, the Philippine Daily Inquirer (PDI), with a circulation of 260 000 constituting half of the national circulation, is outpaced by the top three daily tabloids, People's Journal with 469 464; Bulgar, 450 000; and People's Tonight, 365 811.

Unlike broadsheets that are printed in English, most tabloids are published in vernacular languages, making them an easy reading for C, D, and E markets. Broadsheets are perceived as intellectual newspapers that contain explanatory and investigative reports as compared to tabloids that are considered as the “poor man's newspaper” because of their emphasis on sensational crime stories, gossip columns, and other so-called “junk food news.”

But do these perceptions still hold true?

Continue reading the article at

Monday, 9 June 2008


Andres Bonifacio y de Castro, the father of Philippine Revolution and Philippine Democracy, was executed to death by firing squad by Gen Lazaro Makapagal and four other soldiers at Mount Nagpatong, Maragondon, Cavite on May 10, 1897. But, who ordered the execution? Read the article and find out.

Photo from the Wikimedia Commons

Photo from the Internet

Andres Bonifacio y de Castro, born in Tondo, Manila
on November 30, 1863 to Santiago Bonifacio and Catalina de Castro and married to Gregoria de Jesus, the Lakambini of the Katipunan, is the father of the Philippine Revolution and Philippine Democracy.

Bonifacio founded the premiere crusader of the Philippine Independence, the “Kataastaasang Kagalanggalangang Katipunan ng mga Anak ng Bayan” (Highest and Most Respectable Society of the Sons of the People) or the Katipunan at a house in Calle Azcarraga, now Claro Mayo Recto Street, in Tondo, Manila, on the night of July 7, 1892, the night when Dr Jose Protacio Mercado Rizal y Alonzo Realonda, the national hero of the Philippines, was deported to Dapitan, now City of Dapitan, in Zamboanga Del Norte. Together with Ladislao Diwa and Teodoro Plata, Bonifacio formed the first triangle of the Katipunan. With them were Jose Dizon, Valentin Diaz, Pio Valenzuela, Deodato Arellano, and Emilio Jacinto, who served as Bonifacio's secretary and adviser on fiscal matters.

According to Dr Teodoro A Agoncillo in the “History of the Filipino People,” the katipuneros gathered around a flickering table lamp, performed the ancient blood compact, and signed their membership papers with their own blood. They vowed to liberate the Philippines from the tyranny of Spanish friars and civil guards through force of arms.

Continue reading the article at