History of the Philippines (1565–1898)
|History of the Philippines|
The history of the Philippines from 1565 to 1898, also known as the Spanish Philippines or the Spanish colonial period, was the period during which the Philippines were ruled as the Captaincy General of the Philippines within the Spanish East Indies, initially under New Spain until Mexican independence in 1821, resulting in direct Spanish control during a period of governmental instability there.
Forty-four years after Ferdinand Magellan discovered the Philippines and died in the Battle of Mactan during his Spanish expedition to circumnavigate the globe, the Spaniards successfully annexed and colonized the islands during the reign of Philip II of Spain, whose name remained attached to the country.
The Spaniards had been exploring the Philippines since the early 16th century. Ferdinand Magellan, a Portuguese navigator in charge of a Spanish expedition to circumnavigate the globe, was killed by warriors of datu Lapulapu at the Battle of Mactan. In 1543, Ruy López de Villalobos arrived at the islands of Leyte and Samar and named them Las Islas Filipinas in honor of Philip II of Spain, at the time Prince of Asturias. Philip became King of Spain on January 16, 1556, when his father, Charles I of Spain (who also reigned as Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor), abdicated the Spanish throne. Philip was in Brussels at the time and his return to Spain was delayed until 1559 because of European politics and wars in northern Europe. Shortly after his return to Spain, Philip ordered an expedition mounted to the Spice Islands, stating that its purpose was "to discover the islands of the west". In reality its task was to conquer the Philippines for Spain. The population of Luzon and the Visayas at the time of the first Spanish missions is estimated as between 1 and 1.5 million, overall density being low.
Conquest under Philip II
King Philip II of Spain, whose name has remained attached to the islands, ordered and oversaw the conquest and colonization of the Philippines. On November 19 or 20, 1564 a Spanish expedition of a mere 500 men led by Miguel López de Legazpi departed Barra de Navidad, New Spain, arriving off Cebu on February 13, 1565, conquering it despite Cebuano opposition.: 77 : 20–23 Spanish policy towards the colonization of the Philippines was that it should be a peaceful conversion rather than a military conquest, a product of internal Spanish debates following the violence of their conquest of the New World, and of Philip II's personal convictions. The reality on the ground was different, as hardship for the colonizing soldiers contributed to looting and enslavement, despite the entreaties of representatives of the church who accompanied them. In 1568, the crown permitted the establishment of the encomienda system that it was abolishing in the New World, effectively legalizing a more oppressive conquest. Although slavery had been abolished in the Spanish Empire, it was allowed to continue in some forms the Philippines due to its already present use on the islands.
Due to conflict with the Portuguese, who blockaded Cebu in 1568, and persistent supply shortages, in 1569 Legazpi transferred to Panay and founded a second settlement on the bank of the Panay River. In 1570 Legazpi sent his grandson, Juan de Salcedo, who had arrived from Mexico in 1567, to Mindoro to punish the Muslim Moro pirates who had been plundering Panay villages. Salcedo also destroyed forts on the islands of Ilin and Lubang, respectively south and northwest of Mindoro.: 79
In 1570, Martín de Goiti, having been dispatched by Legazpi to Luzon, conquered the Kingdom of Maynila. Legazpi followed with a larger fleet including both Spanish forces and some Visayan allies,: 79-80 taking a month to bring these forces to bear due to slow speed of local ships. This large force caused the surrender of neighboring Tondo. An attempt by some local leaders to defeat the Spanish was repelled. Legazpi renamed Manila Nueva Castilla, and declared it the capital of the Philippines,: 80 and thus of the entire Spanish East Indies, which also encompassed Spanish territories in Asia and the Pacific. Legazpi became the country's first governor-general.
Though the fledgling Legazpi-led administration was initially small and vulnerable to elimination by Portuguese and Chinese invaders, the merging of the Spanish and Portuguese crowns under the Iberian Union of 1580-1640 helped make permanent the mutual recognition of Spanish claim to the Philippines as well as Portugal's claim to the Spice Islands (Mollucas).
In 1573, Japan expanded its trade in northern Luzon.[failed verification] In 1580, the Japanese lord Tay Fusa established the independent Wokou Tay Fusa state in non-colonial Cagayan. When the Spanish arrived in the area, they subjugated the new kingdom, resulting in 1582 Cagayan battles. With time, Cebu's importance fell as power shifted north to Luzon.In the late 16th century the population of Manila grew even as the population of Spanish settlements in the Visayas decreased. During this time, many colonial abuses were already committed. The Bishop of Manila, in 1583 notes of these abuses, especially agricultural exploitations against peasants. Many natives also died from forced island expeditions, which was a constant under Spanish rule. The Bishop notes that the Spanish "treat the natives worse than dogs or slaves."[page needed] As a result of these abuses, the native population of the Philippines declined by 36-40% by the year 1600, just 36 years since the imposition of Spanish colonial rule.
In time, the Spanish successfully took over the different local states one by one. Under Spanish rule, disparate barangays were deliberately consolidated into towns, where Catholic missionaries were more easily able to convert the inhabitants to Christianity. Under Spanish rule, Catholic missionaries converted most of the lowland inhabitants to Christianity. They also founded schools, a university, hospitals, and churches. To defend their settlements, the Spaniards constructed and manned a network of military fortresses across the archipelago. Slavery was also abolished. As a result of these policies the Philippine population increased exponentially.
Spanish rule brought most of what is now the Philippines into a single unified administration. From 1565 to 1821, the Philippines was governed as part of the Mexico-based Viceroyalty of New Spain, later administered from Madrid following the Mexican War of Independence. Administration of the Philippine islands were considered a drain on the economy of Spain, and there were debates about abandoning it or trading it for some other territory. However, this was opposed for a number of reasons, including economic potential, security, and the desire to continue religious conversion in the islands and the surrounding region. The Philippines survived on an annual subsidy provided by the Spanish Crown, which averaged 250,000 pesos and was usually paid through the provision of 75 tons of silver bullion being sent from Spanish America on the Manila galleons. Financial constraints meant the 200-year-old fortifications in Manila did not see significant change after being first built by the early Spanish colonizers.
Some Japanese ships visited the Philippines in the 1570s in order to export Japanese silver and import Philippine gold. Later, increasing imports of silver from New World sources resulted in Japanese exports to the Philippines shifting from silver to consumer goods. In the 1570s, the Spanish traders were troubled to some extent by Japanese pirates, but peaceful trading relations were established between the Philippines and Japan by 1590. Japan's kampaku (regent), Toyotomi Hideyoshi, demanded unsuccessfully on several occasions that the Philippines submit to Japan's suzerainty.
On February 8, 1597, King Philip II, near the end of his 42-year reign, issued a Royal Cedula instructing Francisco de Tello de Guzmán, then Governor-General of the Philippines to fulfill the laws of tributes and to provide for restitution of ill-gotten taxes taken from indigenous Filipinos. The decree was published in Manila on August 5, 1598. King Philip died on September 13, just forty days after the publication of the decree, but his death was not known in the Philippines until middle of 1599, by which time a referendum by which indigenous Filipinos would acknowledge Spanish rule was underway. With the completion of the Philippine referendum of 1599, Spain could be said to have established legitimate sovereignty over the Philippines.
The European population in the archipelago steadily grew, although native Filipinos remained the majority. During the initial period of colonialization, Manila was settled by 1200 Spanish families. In Cebu City, at the Visayas, the settlement received a total of 2,100 soldier-settlers from New Spain (Mexico). Spanish forces included soldiers from elsewhere in New Spain, many of whom deserted and intermingled with the wider population. Immigration blurred the racial caste system Spain maintained in towns and cities. At the immediate south of Manila, Mexicans were present at Ermita and at Cavite where they were stationed as sentries. In addition, men conscripted from Peru, were also sent to settle Zamboanga City in Mindanao, to wage war upon Muslim defenders There were also communities of Spanish-Mestizos that developed in Iloilo, Negros and Vigan. Interactions between indigenous Filipinos and immigrant Spaniards plus Latin-Americans eventually caused the formation of a new language, Chavacano, a creole of Mexican Spanish.They depended on the Galleon Trade for a living. In the later years of the 18th century, Governor-General Basco introduced economic reforms that gave the colony its first significant internal source income from the production of tobacco and other agricultural exports. In this later period, agriculture was finally opened to the European population, which before was reserved only for indigenous Filipinos.
During its rule, Spain quelled various indigenous revolts, as well as defending against external military challenges. The Spanish considered their war with the Muslims in Southeast Asia an extension of the Reconquista. War against the Dutch from the West, in the 17th century, together with conflict with the Muslims in the South nearly bankrupted the colonial treasury. Moros from western Mindanao and the Sulu Archipelago also raided the coastal Christian areas of Luzon and the Visayas. Settlers had to fight off the Chinese pirates (who lay siege to Manila, the most famous of which was Limahong in 1573).
There were three naval actions fought between Dutch corsairs and Spanish forces in 1610, 1617 and 1624. Known as the First, Second and Third Battles of Playa Honda. The second battle is the most famous and celebrated of the three, with nearly even forces (10 ships vs 10 ships), resulting in the Dutch losing their flagship and retreating. Only the third battle of 1624 resulted in a Dutch naval victory.
In 1646, a series of five naval actions known as the Battles of La Naval de Manila was fought between the forces of Spain and the Dutch Republic, as part of the Eighty Years' War. Although the Spanish forces consisted of just two Manila galleons and a galley with crews composed mainly of Filipino volunteers, against three separate Dutch squadrons, totaling eighteen ships, the Dutch squadrons were severely defeated in all fronts by the Spanish-Filipino forces, forcing the Dutch to abandon their plans for an invasion of the Philippines.
On June 6, 1647, Dutch vessels were sighted near Mariveles Island. In spite of the preparations, the Spanish had only one galleon (the San Diego) and two galleys ready to engage the enemy. The Dutch had twelve major vessels.
On June 12, the armada attacked the Spanish port of Cavite. The battle lasted eight hours, and the Spanish believed they had done much damage to the enemy flagship and the other vessels. The Spanish ships were not badly damaged and casualties were low. However, nearly every roof in the Spanish settlement was damaged by cannon fire, which particularly concentrated on the cathedral. On June 19, the armada was split, with six ships sailing for the shipyard of Mindoro and the other six remaining in Manila Bay. The Dutch next attacked Pampanga, where they captured the fortified monastery, taking prisoners and executing almost 200 Filipino defenders. The governor ordered solemn funeral rites for the dead and payments to their widows and orphans.
There was an expedition the following year that arrived in Jolo in July. The Dutch had formed an alliance with an anti-Spanish king, Salicala. The Spanish garrison on the island was small, but survived a Dutch bombardment. The Dutch finally withdrew, and the Spanish made peace with the Joloans, and then also withdrew.
There was also an unsuccessful attack on Zamboanga in 1648. That year the Dutch promised the natives of Mindanao that they would return in 1649 with aid in support of a revolt against the Spanish. Several revolts did break out, the most serious being in the village of Lindáo. There most of the Spaniards were killed, and the survivors were forced to flee in a small river boat to Butuán. However, Dutch aid did not materialize or have objects to provide them. The authorities from Manila issued a general pardon, and many of the Filipinos in the mountains surrendered. However, some of those were hung or they were enslaved.
The demands of these wars has been regarded as a potential cause of population decline.
British occupation of Manila
British forces occupied Manila from 1762 to 1764, however they were unable to extend their conquest outside of Manila as the Filipinos stayed loyal to the remaining Spanish community outside Manila.: 81–83 Spanish colonial forces kept the British confined to Manila. Catholic Archbishop Rojo, who had been captured by the British, executed a document of surrender on October 30, 1762, giving the British confidence in eventual victory.
The surrender by Archbishop Rojo was rejected as illegal by Don Simón de Anda y Salazar, who claimed the title of Governor-General under the statutes of the Council of Indies. He led Spanish-Filipino forces that kept the British confined to Manila and sabotaged or crushed British-fomented revolts, such as the revolt by Diego Silang. Anda intercepted and redirected the Manila galleon trade to prevent further captures by the British. The failure of the British to consolidate their position led to troop desertions and a breakdown of command unity which left the British forces paralysed and in an increasingly precarious position.
The Seven Years' War was ended by the Peace of Paris signed on February 10, 1763. At the time of signing the treaty, the signatories were not aware that the Manila was under British occupation and was being administered as a British colony. Consequently, no specific provision was made for the Philippines. Instead they fell under the general provision that all other lands not otherwise provided for be returned to the Spanish Crown.
The opening of the Philippines to world trade
In Europe, the Industrial Revolution spread from the United Kingdom to Spain during the period known as the Victorian era. The industrialization of Europe created great demands for raw materials from the colonies, bringing with it investment and wealth. Governor-General Basco had opened the Philippines to this trade. Previously, the Philippines was seen as a trading post for international trade but in the nineteenth century it was developed both as a source of raw materials and as a market for manufactured goods.
Following the opening of Philippine ports to world trade in 1834, shifts started occurring within Filipino society. The decline of the Manila Galleon trade contributed to shifts in the domestic economy. Communal land became privatized to meet international demand for agricultural products, which led to the formal opening of the ports of Manila, Iloilo, and Cebu to international trade.
Rise of Filipino nationalism
The development of the Philippines as a source of raw materials and as a market for European manufactures created much local wealth. Many Filipinos prospered. Everyday Filipinos also benefited from the new economy with the rapid increase in demand for labor and availability of business opportunities. Some Europeans immigrated to the Philippines to join the wealth wagon, among them Jacobo Zobel, patriarch of today's Zobel de Ayala family and prominent figure in the rise of Filipino nationalism. Their scions studied in the best universities of Europe where they learned the ideals of liberty from the French and American Revolutions. The new economy gave rise to a new middle class in the Philippines, usually not ethnic Filipinos.
In the mid-19th century, the Suez Canal was opened which made the Philippines easier to reach from Spain. The small increase of Peninsulares from the Iberian Peninsula threatened the secularization of the Philippine churches. In state affairs, the Criollos, known locally as Insulares (lit. "islanders"). were displaced from government positions by the Peninsulares, whom the Insulares regarded as foreigners.
The Latin American wars of independence and renewed immigration led to shifts in social identity, with the term Filipino shifting from referring to Spaniards born in the Iberian Peninsula and in the Philippines to a term encompassing all people in the archipelago. This identity shift was driven by wealthy families of mixed ancestry, for which it developed into a national identity. This was compounded by a Mexican of Filipino descent, Isidoro Montes de Oca, becoming captain-general to the revolutionary leader Vicente Guerrero during the Mexican War of Independence.
The Insulares had become increasingly Filipino and called themselves Los hijos del país (lit. "sons of the country"). Among the early proponents of Filipino nationalism were the Insulares Padre Pedro Peláez, archbishop of Manila, who fought for the secularization of Philippine churches and expulsion of the friars; Padre José Burgos whose execution influenced the national hero José Rizal; and Joaquín Pardo de Tavera who fought for retention of government positions by natives, regardless of race. In retaliation to the rise of Filipino nationalism, the friars called the Indios (possibly referring to Insulares and mestizos as well) indolent and unfit for government and church positions. In response, the Insulares came out with Indios agraviados, a manifesto defending the Filipino against discriminatory remarks.
The tension between the Insulares and Peninsulares erupted into the failed revolts of Novales and the Cavite Mutiny of 1872 which resulted to the deportation of prominent Filipino nationalists to the Marianas and Europe who would continue the fight for liberty through the Propaganda Movement. The Cavite Mutiny implicated the priests Mariano Gomez, José Burgos, and Jacinto Zamora (see Gomburza) whose executions would influence the subversive activities of the next generation of Filipino nationalists, José Rizal, who then dedicated his novel, El filibusterismo to these priests.
Rise of Spanish liberalism
After the Liberals won the Spanish Revolution of 1868, Carlos María de la Torre was sent to the Philippines to serve as governor-general (1869–1871). He was one of the most loved governors-general in the Philippines because of the reforms he implemented. At one time, his supporters, including Padre Burgos and Joaquín Pardo de Tavera, serenaded him in front of the Malacañan Palace. Following the Bourbon Restoration in Spain and the removal of the Liberals from power, de la Torre was recalled and replaced by Governor-General Izquierdo who vowed to rule with an iron fist.
Ilustrados, Rizal and Katipunan
Revolutionary sentiments were stoked in 1872 after three activist Catholic priests were executed on weak pretences. This would inspire a propaganda movement in Spain, organized by Marcelo H. del Pilar, José Rizal, and Mariano Ponce, lobbying for political reforms in the Philippines.
The mass deportation of nationalists to the Marianas and Europe in 1872 led to a Filipino expatriate community of reformers in Europe. The community grew with the next generation of Ilustrados studying in European universities. They allied themselves with Spanish liberals, notably Spanish senator Miguel Morayta Sagrario, and founded the newspaper La Solidaridad. During this time, Spain institutionalized the business of human zoos against Filipinos, adding flame to the call of revolution as indigenous Filipinos were taken by the Spanish and displayed as animals for white audiences.
Among the reformers was José Rizal, who wrote two novels while in Europe. His novels were considered[by whom?] the most influential of the Illustrados' writings causing further unrest in the islands, particularly the founding of the Katipunan. A rivalry developed between himself and Marcelo H. del Pilar for the leadership of La Solidaridad and the reform movement in Europe. Majority of the expatriates supported the leadership of del Pilar.
Rizal then returned to the Philippines to organize La Liga Filipina and bring the reform movement to Philippine soil. He was arrested just a few days after founding the league. Rizal was eventually executed on December 30, 1896, on charges of rebellion. This radicalized many who had previously been loyal to Spain. As attempts at reform met with resistance, in 1892, Radical members of the La Liga Filipina, which included Bonifacio and Deodato Arellano, founded the Kataastaasan Kagalanggalang Katipunan ng mga Anak ng Bayan (KKK), called simply the Katipunan, which had the objective of the Philippines seceding from the Spanish Empire.
The Philippine Revolution
By 1896, the Katipunan had a membership by the thousands. That same year, the existence of the Katipunan was discovered by the colonial authorities. In late August, Katipuneros gathered in Caloocan and declared the start of the revolution. The event is now known as the Cry of Balintawak or the Cry of Pugad Lawin, due to conflicting historical traditions and official government positions. Andrés Bonifacio called for a general offensive on Manila and was defeated in battle at the town of San Juan del Monte. He regrouped his forces and was able to briefly capture the towns of Marikina, San Mateo and Montalban. Spanish counterattacks drove him back and he retreated to the mountains of Balara and Morong and from there engaged in guerrilla warfare. By August 30, the revolt had spread to eight provinces. On that date, Governor-General Ramon Blanco declared a state of war in these provinces and placed them under martial law. These were Manila, Bulacan, Cavite, Pampanga, Tarlac, Laguna, Batangas, and Nueva Ecija. They would later be represented in the eight rays of the sun in the Filipino flag.[failed verification] Emilio Aguinaldo and the Katipuneros of Cavite were the most successful of the rebels and they controlled most of their province by September–October. They defended their territories with trenches designed by Edilberto Evangelista.
Many of the educated ilustrado class such as Antonio Luna and Apolinario Mabini did not initially favor an armed revolution. Rizal himself, whom the rebels took inspiration from and had consulted beforehand, disapproved of a premature revolution. He was arrested, tried and executed for treason, sedition and conspiracy on December 30, 1896. Before his arrest he had issued a statement disavowing the revolution, but in his swan song poem Mi último adiós he wrote that dying in battle for the sake of one's country was just as patriotic as his own impending death.[page needed]
While the revolution spread throughout the provinces, Aguinaldo's Katipuneros declared the existence of an insurgent government in October regardless of Bonifacio's Katipunan, which he had already converted into an insurgent government with him as president in August. Bonifacio was invited to Cavite to mediate between Aguinaldo's rebels, the Magdalo, and their rivals the Magdiwang, both chapters of the Katipunan. There he became embroiled in discussions whether to replace the Katipunan with an insurgent government of the Cavite rebels' design. This internal dispute that led to the Tejeros Convention and an election in which Bonifacio lost his position and Emilio Aguinaldo was elected as the new leader of the revolution.: 145–147 On March 22, 1897, the convention established the Tejeros Revolutionary Government. Bonifacio refused to recognize this and he was executed for treason in May 1897. On November 1, the Tejeros government was supplanted by the Republic of Biak-na-Bato.
By December 1897, the revolution had resulted to a stalemate between the colonial government and rebels. Pedro Paterno mediated between the two sides for the signing of the Pact of Biak-na-Bato. The conditions of the armistice included the self-exile of Aguinaldo and his officers in exchange for $MXN800,000 (about $US12,800,000 today[a]) to be paid by the colonial government. Aguinaldo then sailed to Hong Kong for self exile.
The Spanish–American War
On April 25, 1898, the Spanish–American War began. On May 1, 1898, in the Battle of Manila Bay, the Asiatic Squadron of the U.S. Navy, led by Commodore George Dewey aboard the USS Olympia, decisively defeated the Spanish naval forces in the Philippines. With the loss of its naval forces and of control of Manila Bay, Spain lost the ability to defend Manila and therefore the Philippines.
On May 19, Emilio Aguinaldo returned to the Philippines aboard a U.S. Navy ship and on May 24 took command of Filipino forces. Filipino forces had liberated much of the country from the Spanish. On June 12, 1898 Aguinaldo issued the Philippine Declaration of Independence declaring independence from Spain. Filipino forces then laid siege to Manila, as had American forces.
In August 1898, the Spanish governor-general covertly agreed with American commanders to surrender Manila to the Americans following a mock battle. On August 13, 1898, during the Battle of Manila (1898), Americans took control of the city. In December 1898, the Treaty of Paris (1898) was signed, ending the Spanish–American War and selling the Philippines to the United States for $20 million. With this treaty, Spanish rule in the Philippines formally ended.
- Antonio de Morga
- Governor-General of the Philippines
- New Spain
- Spanish East Indies
- Captaincy General of the Philippines
- British occupation of Manila
- Philippine revolts against Spain
- Miguel López de Legazpi
- Juan de Salcedo
- Gómez Pérez Dasmariñas
- Luis Pérez Dasmariñas
- Santiago de Vera
- Martín de Goiti
- Pedro Chirino
- History of Spanish slavery in the Philippines
- San Diego (ship)
- Rajah Sulayman
- José Rizal
- Philippine Revolution
- Philippine Revolutionary Army
- Philippine Declaration of Independence
- First Philippine Republic
- Ferdinand Blumentritt
- History of the Philippines
- Prehistory of the Philippines
- History of the Philippines (Pre-Colonial Era 900–1521)
- History of the Philippines (American Era 1898–1946)
- History of the Philippines (Third Republic 1946–65)
- History of the Philippines (Marcos Era 1965–86)
- History of the Philippines (Contemporary Era 1986–present)
- List of sovereign state leaders in the Philippines
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To pursue their mission of conquest, the Spaniards dealt individually with each settlement or village and with each province or island until the entire Philippine archipelago was brought under imperial control. They saw to it that the people remained divided or compartmentalized and with the minimum of contact or communication. The Spaniards adopted the policy of divide et impera (divide and conquer).
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Because local resources did not yield enough money to maintain the colonial administration, the government was constantly running a deficit and had to be supported with an annual subsidy from the Spanish government in Mexico, the situado.
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Within the walls, there were some six hundred houses of a private nature, most of them built of stone and tile, and an equal number outside in the suburbs, or "arrabales," all occupied by Spaniards ("todos son vivienda y poblacion de los Españoles"). This gives some twelve hundred Spanish families or establishments, exclusive of the religious, who in Manila numbered at least one hundred and fifty, the garrison, at certain times, about four hundred ttrs.mzgbj.dfkjgdfs.jkg[' r0e[8oe rat[8 arv[8 arained Spanish soldiers who had seen service in Holland and the Low Countries, and the official classes.
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- Mehl, Eva Maria (2016). "Chapter 6 – Unruly Mexicans in Manila". Forced Migration in the Spanish Pacific World From Mexico to the Philippines, 1765–1811. Cambridge University Press. doi:10.1017/CBO9781316480120.007. ISBN 9781316480120.
In Governor Anda y Salazar's opinion, an important part of the problem of vagrancy was the fact that Mexicans and Spanish disbanded after finishing their military or prison terms "all over the islands, even the most distant, looking for subsistence.~CSIC riel 208 leg.14
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- Mehl, Eva Maria (2016). "Chapter 1 – Intertwined Histories in the Pacific". Forced Migration in the Spanish Pacific World From Mexico to the Philippines, 1765–1811. Cambridge University Press. p. 246. doi:10.1017/CBO9781316480120.007. ISBN 9781316480120.
The military organization of Manila might have depended to some degree on non-European groups, but colonial authorities measured a successful imperial policy of defense on the amount of European and American recruits that could be accounted for in the military forces.~CSIC ser. Consultas riel 301 leg.8 (1794)
- "Filipino-Mexican-Central-and-South American Connection, Tales of Two Sisters: Manila and Mexico". June 21, 1997. Retrieved January 1, 2021.
Tomás de Comyn, general manager of the Compañia Real de Filipinas, in 1810 estimated that out of a total population of 2,515,406, "the European Spaniards, and Spanish creoles and mestizos do not exceed 4,000 persons of both sexes and all ages, and the distinct castes or modifications known in America under the name of mulatto, quarteroons, etc., although found in the Philippine Islands, are generally confounded in the three classes of pure Indians, Chinese mestizos and Chinese." In other words, the Mexicans who had arrived in the previous century had so intermingled with the local population that distinctions of origin had been forgotten by the 19th century. The Mexicans who came with Legázpi and aboard succeeding vessels had blended with the local residents so well that their country of origin had been erased from memory.
- (Page 10) Pérez, Marilola (2015). Cavite Chabacano Philippine Creole Spanish: Description and Typology (PDF) (PhD). University of California, Berkeley. Archived from the original on January 14, 2021.
The galleon activities also attracted a great number of Mexican men that arrived from the Mexican Pacific coast as ships' crewmembers (Grant 2009: 230). Mexicans were administrators, priests and soldiers (guachinangos or hombres de pueblo) (Bernal 1964: 188) many though, integrated into the peasant society, even becoming tulisanes 'bandits' who in the late 18th century "infested" Cavite and led peasant revolts (Medina 2002: 66). Meanwhile, in the Spanish garrisons, Spanish was used among administrators and priests. Nonetheless, there is not enough historical information on the social role of these men. In fact some of the few references point to a quick integration into the local society: "los hombres del pueblo, los soldados y marinos, anónimos, olvidados, absorbidos en su totalidad por la población Filipina." (Bernal 1964: 188). In addition to the Manila-Acapulco galleon, a complex commercial maritime system circulated European and Asian commodities including slaves. During the 17th century, Portuguese vessels traded with the ports of Manila and Cavite, even after the prohibition of 1644 (Seijas 2008: 21). Crucially, the commercial activities included the smuggling and trade of slaves: "from the Moluccas, and Malacca, and India… with the monsoon winds" carrying "clove spice, cinnamon, and pepper and black slaves, and Kafir [slaves]" (Antonio de Morga cf Seijas 2008: 21)." Though there is no data on the numbers of slaves in Cavite, the numbers in Manila suggest a significant fraction of the population had been brought in as slaves by the Portuguese vessels. By 1621, slaves in Manila numbered 1,970 out of a population of 6,110. This influx of slaves continued until late in the 17th century; according to contemporary cargo records in 1690, 200 slaves departed from Malacca to Manila (Seijas 2008: 21). Different ethnicities were favored for different labor; Africans were brought to work on the agricultural production, and skilled slaves from India served as caulkers and carpenters.
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- Tatiana Seijas (2014). "The Diversity and Reach of the Manila Slave Market". Asian Slaves in Colonial Mexico. p. 36. ISBN 978-1-107-06312-9.
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Reforms under General Arandía.—The demoralization and misery with which Obando's rule closed were relieved somewhat by the capable government of Arandía, who succeeded him. Arandía was one of the few men of talent, energy, and integrity who stood at the head of affairs in these islands during two centuries. He reformed the greatly disorganized military force, establishing what was known as the "Regiment of the King," made up very largely of Mexican soldiers. He also formed a corps of artillerists composed of Filipinos. These were regular troops, who received from Arandía sufficient pay to enable them to live decently and like an army.
- "SECOND BOOK OF THE SECOND PART OF THE CONQUESTS OF THE FILIPINAS ISLANDS, AND CHRONICLE OF THE RELIGIOUS OF OUR FATHER, ST. AUGUSTINE" (Zamboanga City History) "He (Governor Don Sebastían Hurtado de Corcuera) brought a great reënforcements of soldiers, many of them from Peru, as he made his voyage to Acapulco from that kingdom."
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The early modern revival of the Reconquista in the Philippines had a profound effect on the islands, one that is still being felt today. As described above, the Spanish Reconquista served to unify Christians against a common Moro enemy, helping to bring together Castilian, Catalan, Galician, and Basque peoples into a single political unit: Spain. In precolonial times, the Philippine islands were a divided and unspecified part of the Malay archipelago, one inhabited by dozens of ethnolinguistic groups, residing in countless independent villages, strewn across thousands of islands. By the end of the seventeenth century, however, a dramatic change had happened in the archipelago. A multiethnic community had come together to form the colonial beginnings of a someday nation: the Philippines. The powerful influence of Christian-Moro antagonisms on the formation of the early Philippines remains evident more than four hundred years later, as the Philippine national government continues to grapple with Moro separatists groups, even in 2013.
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The cultural identity of the mestizos was challenged as they became increasingly aware that they were true members of neither the indio nor the Chinese community. Increasingly powerful but adrift, they linked with the Spanish mestizos, who were also being challenged because after the Latin American revolutions broke the Spanish Empire, many of the settlers from the New World, Caucasian Creoles born in Mexico or Peru, became suspect in the eyes of the Iberian Spanish. The Spanish Empire had lost its universality.
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