Thursday, October 27, 2005


Philippine Heritage was enriched by early contacts with the advance civilization of India, China, Japan, and Arabia.

iv - HOUSE
viii - MUSIC
xii - LAWS
xvii - WRITING
xxi - ARTS


  • staple food of the early Filipinos was rice
  • aside from rice, their food consisted of carabao meat, pork, chickens, sea turtles, fish, bananas and other fruits and vegetables.
  • they cooked their food in earthen pots or in bamboo tubes.
  • they te with their fingers, using banana plants as plates and coconut shells as drinking cups.
  • made fire to cook their ood by rubbing two piececs of dry wood which when heated, produced a tiny flame.
  • they stored their drinking water in big earthen jars or in huge clean bamboo tues.
  • tuba - popular wine which was made from coconut.
  • other wines being manufactured was basi (an Ilocano wine made from sugarcane); pangasi (Bisayan wine made from fermented rice); lambanog (tagalog wine taken from the coconut palm); and the tapuy (an Igorot wine distilled from rice).

  • wore a collarless, Short-sleeve jacket called kangan and strip cloth, called bahag wrapped around the waist and in between legs.
  • Kangan – reached slightly below the waist
    • It was dyed (tining) either in blue or black, except that of the chief which was red.
  • men use the putong, a piece of cloth wound around the head.
  • they had jewels, (gold necklaces, gold armlets called kalombigas nad the anklets filled with agates, carnelians and other colored glass).
  • wore a wide-sleeved jacket called baro.
  • Their skirt was called patadyong.
    • it was a piece of cotton cloth which they wrapped about their waists and let fall to their feet.
  • jewels consisted of gold necklaces, gold bracelets, large gold earrings, and gold rings.
Men and Women went brefoot. nd inserted gold between their teeth as an ornament.

Tattoos srved 2 puropses:
  1. to enhance their bodily beauty
  2. to show their war record.
  • the more a men warrior had killed in a battle, the more tattooed he was.
  • women have less tattooed than men.

iv - HOUSE

Houses were made of wood, bamboo, and palm leaves.
  • each house had a bamboo ladder that could be drawn up at night or when the family was out.
  • batalan - this is where jars of water were kept for household purposes.
  • some of them livced in tree-houses (house uilt on the top of trees) for better protection from enemies
  • Badjaos - (sea-gypsies) of the Sulu Sea still live in boat-houses, as their forefathers did.


  • early Filipinos were courteous and polite
    • when two persons of equal rank met on the road, they removed their putong (turban) as a sign of courtesy
    • when a person addressesd his superioir, he took off his putong, put it over his leftr shoulder like a towel, and bowed low,
      • he addressed his superior with the word 'po', which is equivalent to 'sir'.
      • he spoke in polite language
  • when walking, women walks ahead, and the men followed behind.


  • Filipinos were clean and neat in their personal habits.
  • they bathed daily
  • they washed their hair regularly with gugo and water. They annointed it coconut oil and other lotions
  • they washed mouth and clean their teeth. they chewed buyo which made their teeth colored but strong.
  • they kept their homes clean.
  • Father Francisco Collin said "they keep a vessel full of water at the door of every home, nd every person, whether belonging to the house or not, upon entering, takes water from the vessel nd washes his feet, especially during the rainy season."


  • they held banquets to celebrate a good harvest, a wedding, a religious sacrifice, and a victory in a war
  • these banquets were celebrated with much eating drinking, singing, and dancing.
  • other forms of amusements are: games as carabao races, wrestling, fencing, boat races, and stone-throwing contests.
viii - MUSIC

  • they had various musical instruments and numerous dances and songs for different occasions.
  • among their musical instruments were :
      • kudyapi - tagalog guitar
      • kalaleng - tinggian nose-flute
      • kulintang - moro xylophone
      • tultogan - bisayan bamboo drum
      • silbay - Ilocano reed flute
      • surcan - subanum cymbal
  • folk dances of the early Filipinos were charming.
      • kumintang - tagalog love dance
      • mahinhin - tagalog courtship dance
      • dandansoy - bisayan tuba dance
      • paujalay - moro wedding dance
      • tadok - tinggian love dance
  • their songs expressed all aspects of life - love, war, labor, religion, and death
      • tagumpay - tagalog song of victory
      • dallu - Negrito religious song
      • ayog-ku - igorot serenade song
      • bactal - tagbanua death song
      • dallot - ilocano ballad song
      • kuilay-kuilay - tingian wine song
      • tudob - agusan harvest song
  • it is customary for them to marry within their rank
  • however, there was no strict prohibition against intermarriages between the nobility and the commoner and between the rich and the poor.
Before marriage:
  • the groom gave a drowry (bigaykaya) to the family of the bride. it consisted of gold, land, slaves, or anything else of value.
  • the groom had to work in the house of the girl for a certain period of time
  • they already practiced divorced. The grounds for divorce were:
      • adultery on the part of the wife
      • desertion on the part of the husband
      • loss of affection
      • cruelty
      • insanity
      • childlessness


On the day of the wedding:
  • wedding ceremony would take place at the groom's house
  • the friends of the groom went to bride's house to bring her to the home of the groom.
  • the priestess, joined the hands of the couple over a bowl of uncooked rice and pronounced them man and wife.


  • barangay - a Hispanized form of the Malayan word balangay, which means "sailboat".
      • they applied the name barangay to their settlement in honor of the sailboat that brought them to Philippine shores
      • each barangay consisted of about 100 families.
      • ruler of barangay was called datu.
        • he was also known a hari or raja
        • in time of peace, he was the chief executive, legislator, and judge
        • in war, he was the commander of the barangay warriors
        • he usually obtained his position by inheritance.
        • his son will inherit the datuship, if the datu dies.
        • if the datu died childless, the barangay chose a man to be the datu on the basis of his wisdom, physical strength, or wealth.

xii - LAWS
ORAL laws:
  • customs (ugali) of the race which were handed down orally from generation to generation
  • Lubluban - a woman, legendry law-giver
      • the great granddaughter of the first man and woman of the world
  • were promulgated by the datus with the help of the elders, and were put into writing
  • written laws were announced to the people by a barangay crier known as umalahokan.
  • these laws were put on the barks of trees, wood, leaves or cloth.
Code of Kalantiaw - a well-known code of laws supposedly given by Datu Kalantiaw of Aklan in 1433 is a clever hoax. The hoax was done by Jose E. Marco, an antique collector from Negros Occidental who gave the document to James E. Robertson of the National Library in 1914. It could not be authentic because of its suspicious origin, the strange writig and modern words in the text, and the un-Filipino harshness of its laws (e.g. flogging, exposurer to ants, swimming for hours).


Ancient Filipinos were pagans. their supreme God was Bathala, creator of heaven, earth, and men.
  • early Filipinos worshipped ancestral spirits called anitos (Tagalog) or diwatas (Bisayan)
  • sacrifices called maganito were offered.
  • sacrifices was performed by a priest or priestess called katalona or baylana.
They believed in life after death


  • In burying their dead, the corpse was embalmed and was buried amidst deep sorrow ner his home, in cave, or on a headland overlooking the sea.
  • during the period of mourning, relatives wore rattan bands around their necks, arms, and legs.
  • they abstained from eating meat and drinking wine.
  • larao - mourning custom for deceased datu
  • no colored clothes were worn by the grieving people
  • all wars and quarrels were suspended
  • singing in boats returning from the sea was prohibited
  • all warriors carried their spears with their tips pointed downward and their daggers with hilts reversed.


They believed in witches, suc has the asuang who assumed the form of a dog, a bird, or any oter animal
  • mangkukulam - who caused people to die or to be sick by pricking a toy with hisd magic pin
  • tianak - who sucked the baby's entrails by means of his elongated probosis
  • tigbalang - who appeared in the form of a dog, a horse, or an old man to deceive his victims
They believed in the magical power of amulets or charms, such as the:
  • anting-anting - which was believed to make its possessor invulnerable to iron wepons
  • gayuma - a love potion which can arouse an adamant woman's affection
  • odom - a Bicol magic herb which makes its possessor invisible to the human eye
  • uiga - Bisayan charm which enables any man to cross a river without getting wet


Early Filipinos had different languages and dialects.
  • all of them originated from a common linguistic source - the Malayo-Polynesian language, the mother tongue of the Pacific races.

xvii - WRITING

Early Filipinos used sharp pointed iron instrument called sipol as pen.
  • they wrote on banana leaves, tree-barks, and bamboo tubes
  • the direction of their writing was from left to right
  • ancient alphabet consisted of three vowels and 14 consonants


ORAL literature -
  1. myths and legends which recounted of the world and the origin of man, woman, and other creatures
  2. songs and poems which chanted the deeds of their gods and heroes
  3. fables, proverbs (sawikain) and riddles (bugtong)
Darangan of the Maranaws and the Ilim and the Hud-hud of the Ifugaos are examples of the existing specimens of ancient oral poetry

WRITTEN literature -

tarsilas - surviving pre-spanish specimen. It is a Muslim genealogies of Mindanao and Sulu.


  • the children studied in their own homes with their parents or with some old men in the baranggays as tutors.
  • they were taught how to read,write, perform simple arithmetic operation, the use of weapons, lubus (art of acquiring amulets and talismans) and tribal customs
  • boys - were trained to be warriors, hunters, fisherman, farmers, marinersand craftsmen.
  • girls - were taught houselhold chores

xx - ARTS

Arts were part of their cultural heritage
  • Architecture - bahay kubo- style of home
        • their houses of bamboo, wood , nipa, and palm-leaves which were cool, cozy, and suitable shelters
  • painting - was shown in their ancient tattoo art.
    • the used of dagger or knife as brush, black soot and jungle spas as colors, and human body as canvas
  • sculptors carved statues in wood, clay, gold, and ivory.
    • statues were called likha (in Tagalog) or landang (Bicol), were made in memory of their anitos or ancestors.
    • they also made fine carvings on the handles of daggers, krises, bolos, and knives


  • they possessed some knowledge of science.
  • they knew curative value of medicinal plants and herbs
  • medical men - had herbs as antidotes for all kinds of poison
  • medical lore - was associated with religion and magic
  • they knew astronomy
  • also engineering - construct forts(kuta)
          • irrigation ditches and rice terraces
  • could perform arithmetic operation
Native name for numerals:
    • isa (one)
    • puo (ten)
    • daan (hundred)
    • libo (thousand)
    • angao (one million)
    • kati (ten million)
    • gahala (one hundred million)


Early Filipinos had their own weights and measures.

weighting things:
    • talaro - a kind of balance scale.
measures of capacity:
    • kaban - (25 gantas)
    • salop - (one ganta)
    • kaguitna - (one-half ganta)
    • gatang - (one chupa)
measures of length:
    • dipa - the length between the tip of the thumb and that of the middle finger when extended.
    • tumuro - the length between the tip of the thumb and that of forefinger when extended
    • sandamak - the width of the hand with the five fingers pressed together
    • sandali - the width of one finger

  • early calendars of the Bisayans contained seven days in a week ,and twelve motnhs a year.
  • each of the 12 months contained 30 days, except the last month which had 26 days or total of 365 days a year.
  • ifugao calendars
      • contains 13 months a year, each having 28 dyas
      • the ifugao have a tribal keeper called tumunoh, 13 strings represening the 13 months of the year.

xxiv - COINAGE

Early Filipinos knew the art of coinage.
  • several specimens of their ancient coins were found in jars (GUI's) which had been execavated in Bataan and Manila.
  • coins were:
    • cone-shaped gold pieces, usually bearing the imprint of the Malayan letter M on their flat bases.
    • they are called piloncitos by local numismtists, or collectors of coins.

Domestic trade was carried on by means of BARTER.
  • Captain Miguel de Loarca said: "filipinos of the inland region exchanged their rice nd cototn for fish, salt, nd other products raised by the dwellers of coastal district"
the usual method of trading with foriegn merchants was by barter in wich they offered theior own products i exchange for the products of other countries.
  • Chao Ju-kua (1225) and Wng Tayuan (1349), Chinese writers observed that they were honest in their commercial transaction


Farming was the main industry of ancient Filipinos.
two methods of cultivation were used:
  1. kaingin method - in which the land was cleared by setting fire to the shrub s and bushes, after which holes were bored in the ground wit hpointed stickes and seeds were then planted there.
  2. regular means of tillge using wooden plows and harrows drawn by carabaos.
Other industries of early Filipios were fishing, mining, lumbering, weving, mea work, making tools and waepons, manufacturing of wines, rsing of poultry and stock, tanning and shipbuiling.


1.1. The First Filipinos
1.1.1 The Bilical Story
1.1.2 The Theory of Evolution
1.1.3 Growth of the Filipinos
1.1.4 Waves of Migration The Negritos The Indonesians The Malays
1.1.5 Legends and Fairy Tales The Story of Malakas and Maganda The Story of the Brown People

1.1 The First Filipinos

1.1.1 The Bilical Story -
  • According to the Holy Bible, all men and women originated from the first man (ADAM) and the first woman (EVE).
  • Noah and his three sons, after the great flood, left to settle the Earth.
  • Shem, Ham, and Japheth - sons of Noah had sons fter the flood.
  • Japheth, the youngest, had a son named Javan
  • Out of Javan, came four sons named Elishah, Tharsis, The Kittim and the Rodanim.
  • Fr. Francisco Colin, A Jesuit Historian, wrote that the first settlers of our country was Tharsis.

1.1.2 The Theory of Evolution
  • Archeologists - scientist who study about the past
        • they study old material relics like bones, jars, pottery and antique jewelry
        • these relics are found in the sites of old burial plots, homes or villages of people who lived long, long ago.
  • Theory of Evolutiuon - the belief that man cxame from apelike creturers who lived thousands of years ago in caves and had crude tools.
  • Evolutionists however believe that the first man in the Philippines lived in Palawan (25.000 yers ago). They first lived in caves at Tabon, Palawan. Thus, they are called "Tabon Man."
  • They belonged to the Stone Age culture. Wherein, these people only used stone tools and weapons and they don't know yet how to use metal.
  • According to the evolution theory, the Tabon Man:
    • hunted wild animals with crude stone wepons.
    • They used simple stone tools to make clothes or prepare food.
    • These stone tools were sharp rocks or stones
    • they did not know how to farm or raise animals
    • they were short, with bushy eyebrows and lowe forehead.
    • they lived in a very harsh surroundings
    • they spent most of the time looking for food

1.1.3 Growth of the Filipinos

Early Filiinos grew in numbers and improve their lifestyle.
      • they began to cook with fire and to make sharper tools.
      • many families als olived in Central Luzon and Cagayan Valley.
      • learned to make axes, seashell ornaments and pottery.
      • they chewed betel nuts (nganga)
      • later, they became expert craftsmen, travels and traders.
      • they made better clothes.
      • they're like Vikings of the Pacific. The sailed on boats across the Pacific Ocean to nearby islands in Micronesia and Polynesia.

1.1.4 Waves of Migration The Negritos
      • first people to come to the Philippines
      • also called Atis or Aetas
      • they came across land bridges from mainland Asia aout 25,000 years ago.
      • Philippines then, was connected to Asia by land bridges which later sank below the sea
          • very small people, less than 5 feet tall
          • were called "Negritos" because they had black skin, short kinky hair, thick lips, and black noses.
          • they wore little clothing
          • had no government
          • no writing
          • no permanent homes
          • they wandered in the forests and lived by hunting, fishing, and gathering wild plants and fruits.
          • used bow and arrow for hunting. The Indonesians

According to the migration theory, Indonesians were the first immigrats to come by sea to the Philippines, aout 5,000 years ago.

2 types of Indonesians:
        1. tall, with light skin, large forehead, high nose and thin lips
        2. shorter and darker, with large nose, thick lips and heavy jaw.
    • they were more advance than negritos.
    • they lived in permanent homes
    • usesd fires to cook their food
    • lived by hunting, fishing, and small farming.
    • they painted their bodies with colorful figures. The Malays

Malays, came after the Idonesians, about 2,000 years ago.

      • medium in height
      • brown-skinned
      • with dark eyes
      • flat noses and straight black hair
They drove the Indonesians into the forest and lived in the lowlands.

      • they were mnore civilized that Indonesians.
      • they livedf in lrger villages
      • had government, writing, music, arts and sciences.
      • they lived by agriculture, fishing, mining and trading.

Maragtas - a legend decribing the coming of the malays

  • it tells how the first ten Malay datus left Borneo and came to Panay. They bought the land from Negritos and settled to other islnds. Datu Puti led the Malay datus, and Marikudo led the Atis. This legend is now celerated in the famous "ati-atihan" fieats and dance.

1.1.5 Legends and Fairy Tales

Imgainary stories tol by old foloks to little children to keep them interested in their past. The Story of Malakas and Maganda

"Long, long ago, after the land was formed as a result of the war betwween the sea anf the sky, the clever bird, which incited the war. flew ashore. It landed on a bamboo plant in order to rest. While resting it happened to peck the bamboo. Suddenly, the bamboo split apart. Out of the first half of the bamboo came handsome man (MALAKAS - the first man in the world), and out of the second half came a beautiful woman (MAGANDA - the first woman in the world). They got married. Many children were born to them. From these children came the Filipinos." The Story of the Brown People

This story tells about God to whom moulded the clay into male and female figures and baked them over a slow fire. Since, he didn't kow how to bake, the first figures turned out too black because they got burned.
Second attempt was making another pair of figure because the Creator seems not happy about his first try. thistime, he became too cautious and took away the clay figures before they could be cooked properly. He was upset to see that the second set of figures were whire coz they were underbake.
For the third time, God moulded another set and put them on the fire. now that he had had practiced and knew perfectly what color of people he wanted. When the color of the clay figures turned brown; he stopped baking and was very happy with his work.
Then He breathed life into all baked clay figuers.