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Title: The Philippine Islands, 1493-1898, Volume 51, 1801-1840

Editor: Emma Helen Blair

Contributor: Edward Gaylord Bourne

Editor: James Alexander Robertson

Release date: June 10, 2018 [eBook #57304]

Language: English

Credits: Produced by Jeroen Hellingman and the Online Distributed
Proofreading Team at for Project



Newly Designed Front Cover.

Chart of China Sea and the Philippines, 1794, in The complete East India pilot, printed for Laurie & Whittle (London, 1800)

Chart of China Sea and the Philippines, 1794, in The complete East India pilot, printed for Laurie & Whittle (London, 1800)

[From copy in Library of Congress]


Original Title Page.
The Philippine Islands, 1493–1898

Explorations by early navigators, descriptions of the islands and their peoples, their history and records of the catholic missions, as related in contemporaneous books and manuscripts, showing the political, economic, commercial and religious conditions of those islands from their earliest relations with European nations to the close of the nineteenth century,

Volume LI, 1801–1840
The Arthur H. Clark Company
Cleveland, Ohio


Preface 11
Documents of 1801–1840
Events in Filipinas, 1801–1840. [Compiled from Montero y Vidal’s Historia de Filipinas.] 23
Remarks on the Philippine Islands, 1819–22. “An Englishman;” Calcutta, 1828 73
Reforms needed in Filipinas. Manuel Bernaldez Pizarro; Madrid, April 26, 1827 182
Bibliographical Data 275
Representation of Filipinas in Cortes. [Compiled from various sources.] 279
List of the archbishops of Manila, 1581–1898. [Compiled from various sources.] 298





In the present volume, a brief outline of events in Filipinas during the period 1801–40 serves as a background and setting for the following surveys of political, social, and economic conditions in the islands during that period. Of these, one is made by an English naval officer who had visited the islands, another by a Spanish official of long experience, and a third (presented in synopsis) by a merchant familiar with the commerce of the Orient and the Americas. These different accounts (written at nearly the same time) furnish most valuable knowledge of the Philippines and their people, and their needs and possibilities; and at the same time they reflect the more enlightened and liberal ideas of policy and administration which had gained a foothold in Spain, and which the recent loss of her other colonies had made her more willing to put in practice in Filipinas.

The leading events in Philippine history during the first four decades of the nineteenth century are briefly epitomized from Montero y Vidal’s Historia de Filipinas. Governor Aguilar opposes the appointment of native secular priests to the curacies, regarding them as unfit for these posts. During his term, he introduces public street-lighting, paved sidewalks, and vaccination in Manila, and various other [12]beneficial measures; he attempts, but with little success, to check the piracies of the Moros, and is compelled to desist therefrom by news of the war between England and Spain, and the consequent danger to Manila. At his death (August 8, 1806) an officer named Folgueras becomes governor ad interim; he strengthens the fortifications of Manila, and quells a revolt in Ilocos. He is succeeded (March 4, 1810) by the new proprietary governor, González Aguilar, who promotes cattle-raising in the provinces, quells another insurrection in Ilocos, publishes the first newspaper in Filipinas, and proclaims the Spanish constitution of 1812. In 1813 arrives his successor, José de Gardoqui, whose rule is by no means easy; for he is opposed by corrupt royal officials, and has to encounter revolts among the Indians caused by the publication of the new Spanish constitution—disturbances which are aggravated by the despotic acts of Fernando VII on regaining his crown (1814). Gardoqui prohibits the introduction and use of opium in the islands, strengthens the fortifications of Cavite, puts down banditti and smugglers, and in many other ways benefits the colony; he dies in December, 1816, and is succeeded by Folgueras. The latter revives the Economic Society, and founds a nautical academy. In 1820 occurs the first epidemic of cholera morbus, which is unfortunately accompanied by a massacre of the foreigners in Manila, executed by the credulous Indians who have been persuaded by malicious persons that the pest was caused by the foreigners having poisoned the waters. Martínez, who becomes governor on October 30, 1822, brings over a number of Spanish officers for the Filipinas regiments; this creates jealousy among the officers [13]who had come from America, which results in a mutiny among them and part of the troops in Manila (June, 1823); this is put down, and the leaders are shot. An expedition is sent against the Moros (1824), which lays waste their shores.

On October 14, 1825, Martínez is replaced by Mariano Ricafort as governor; the latter is also made chief of the treasury. The parish curacies are, by a royal decree in 1826, restored to the regular orders. In 1827 the naval bureau is reëstablished at Manila, under Pascual Enrile, who succeeds Ricafort as governor in 1830. (Both these men were among the most illustrious rulers of Filipinas, on account of their ability, uprightness, and zeal for the public welfare.) In 1828 the insurgent mountaineers of Bohol are finally subdued, and reduced to villages. Various royal decrees are obtained for the promotion of agriculture, manufactures, and other industries; and for obliging the Chinese to live in villages, like the Indians. Several important reforms in the administration and the social conditions of the colony are instituted by these two governors, and Enrile is especially active in building highways and providing other means of communication to bring the inland and the maritime provinces into communication with each other.

In 1836, Governor Salazar has to enforce the laws forbidding the sale of firearms and powder to the enemies of Spain; he also makes a treaty of commerce with the Joloans, which does not, however, restrain them from piracy. In 1837, he urgently requests the Spanish government to send more Spanish friars to the islands as parish priests. The political disturbances in Spain at this time are reflected in [14]Filipinas, and a strong Carlist faction oppose Governor Camba (who assumes that office in August, 1837), and finally procure his recall to Spain, little more than a year afterward. Under his successor, Lardizábal, the status of the Chinese in the islands is determined, provision is made for the official censorship of books brought to Filipinas, a school of commerce is established at Manila and various important changes are made in financial and municipal administration. In February, 1841, Lardizábal is succeeded by Marcelino de Oráa.

In 1828 was published at Calcutta an interesting book entitled, Remarks on the Phillippine Islands, 1819 to 1822, “by an Englishman”—as he states therein, a naval officer; this is here presented, with additional annotations from various sources. It throws much light on conditions in Manila at that time, and is of especial value as coming from an enlightened foreigner, rather than a Spaniard. He praises the natural resources and advantages of the islands, and makes various comments on their climate (which “is remarkably temperate and salubrious”), diseases, and population; he then classifies this last, describing in succession the various races, white, colored, and mixed, who inhabit the islands. He defends the natives from accusations which have been made against them, and considers their defects as the natural result of the oppression and injustice which they have suffered, and the general insecurity of property in the islands. Robbery and piracy prevail there, outside of the new Spanish towns; and even in Manila there are numerous acts of pillage committed by the lawless soldiery. Justice is neglected or corrupted; and the Church exacts so many holidays, [15]pilgrimages, etc., that the natives are obliged to neglect their fields, and tend to become idle and dissipated; they also are burdened by many church taxes and impositions. Our writer proceeds to describe the government of the islands, general, municipal, and provincial, and the abuses prevalent in the last-named; then the ecclesiastical administration, the character of the clergy, and their influence over the natives. The sources of the colonial revenue are enumerated, with the chief branches of expense, the main part of this being for the military and naval forces, both of which are mismanaged, ill-disciplined, poorly paid, and of course very inefficient. Agriculture is “yet in its infancy,” as a result partly of the oppression of the natives, partly of the expulsion of the Jesuits—who did more than any others to civilize the Indians—and partly of the restrictions on commerce, which now are less oppressive; yet the country is almost incredibly fertile. The implements used in tillage are described, with the methods of cultivating the chief products, and that of refining the sugar produced there; and the reasons are given why Europeans have been unable to engage in agriculture with success. The mineral products of the islands are enumerated. Commerce is, like agriculture, still undeveloped; our author attributes this to the Acapulco trade, to the prohibitory system pursued by Spain and to the monopoly allowed to the Philippine Company, and criticises Spain’s policy toward her colonies. He then describes the condition of Philippine commerce, with statistics of 1818; and the difficulties under which it labors—especially the insecurity of property and contracts, the fraudulent dealings of the Chinese merchants; and the neglect [16]of government to prevent smuggling or to make suitable provision for reëxportation of goods—which have prevented Manila from being one of the great centers of Oriental trade.

The second part of these “Remarks” is devoted to Manila; a description of the city, its fortifications (which our writer considers very inefficient on the side next to Pasig River), streets, public buildings, mode of constructing houses, and the public cemetery; and social conditions there, which are unfavorable to morality and the development of character. The author criticises the colonial policy of Spain, and regards her tenure of rule over Filipinas as precarious, especially as discontent and ideas of political freedom are spreading among the Indians.

Of unusual interest and value is a memorial written (April 26, 1827) by Manuel Bernaldez Pizarro, on the “causes which antagonize the security and progress of the Filipinas Islands,” and which bring about their backward condition, with the measures which he judges desirable for their correction. As a high official in Filipinas during seventeen years, his opinions are of much importance, especially as he was evidently a clear-sighted and upright statesman, a keen observer, and a logical thinker—albeit he was, like the majority of government officials, still much under the sway of autocratic and regalistic notions—and was fertile in ideas and projects for improving the condition of Filipinas. The memorial is methodically arranged in sections relating to military affairs, Moro piracies, land-titles, Spanish vs. native clerics, the residence of foreigners in the islands, character of government officials, administration of justice, taxes and revenue, commerce, agriculture, manufactures, etc. [17]

On each of these subjects he presents a concise statement of present conditions and tendencies, followed by his recommendations for change, reform, or suppression. In the army, the principal difficulty lies in the corps of officers, partly Peninsular and partly native or American, with Indian subalterns; these classes have almost nothing in common, and the latter are dangerously near to the Indians, or are spoiled by the tendencies of the country. Provision should be made, therefore, for sending officers from Spain to fill all posts of command. Instead of enlarging the military force, a central location (afterward indicated as Cavite) should be selected, and rendered impregnable to assault, in which the government and the Spanish population of Manila might be safe in any revolution or other dangerous emergency; Manila is not sufficiently fortified for such a purpose. The piracies of the Moros are ruining the islands; the only way to check them is to conquer Joló and Mindanao with a powerful expedition, and colonize them from the Visayas. The Indian villages are often much too large to be properly directed in either spiritual or civil matters, and should be made smaller, with stricter police patrol. Measures should be taken to authenticate and confirm the titles to landed property, which at present are confused and unreliable. Much harm is caused by the ignorance, unfitness, and immorality of the Indian and mestizo clerics; they not only neglect their priestly duties, but have dangerous tendencies to revolution; as soon as this is practicable, all such should be replaced by European friars. Bernaldez descants upon their virtues and their ability to rule the Indians well, and advises the government “to maintain as many religious as possible in the islands, and give them as much [18]political authority as is consistent with their ministry.” Foreigners are undesirable as residents in Filipinas, especially exiles, idlers, and stowaways; and even Spaniards from the Peninsula should be compelled to return thither after a certain period. Strict residencias should be required from the alcaldes-mayor, as many of them are unfit to hold that office, and commit crimes which render them dangerous to the peace of the provinces. Greater care should be exercised in the selection of all government officials, in order to correct the laxity which everywhere characterizes the administration of the islands. There is pressing necessity for better means of communication with the mother-country, which can best be promoted by encouraging her commerce with Filipinas. The governors and intendants should be obliged to furnish the reports and information about the country which the laws require; and there should be more coöperation between the governor and the Audiencia. Private persons of means should be encouraged and aided to undertake the enterprises which the country needs. Various specified abuses in the administration of justice should be corrected; and the trading alcaldes-mayor should be replaced by corregidors, who should be able and experienced lawyers. The tributes ought to be paid in money, and not in kind; and this involves the need of a colonial money for Filipinas. The revenue taxes, especially those on tobacco and wine, should receive more attention, and these two should be extended to all the provinces; and the manufacture and sale of brandy in the islands should be restricted. The Chinese in the islands should be carefully classified, more strictly supervised by the government, and more heavily taxed. The rebate of duties granted on all [19]foreign imports at Manila is ruining the Filipinas manufacturers, whose “infant industries” should be protected; and Bernaldez proposes a new schedule, carefully classified. The inter-island trade is exclusively in the hands of the alcaldes-mayor and the rich Chinese and mestizos, who should therefore pay a moderate tax on that lucrative commerce. A colonial currency is urgently needed. An account of the management of the obras pías should be demanded by the government, and those funds should be employed in promoting agriculture and industry in the islands. The shipbuilding and mining carried on by the government ought to be furnished by private persons under contract. Agriculture is the most important industry of Filipinas, and a feeder to its commerce; its backward condition should be remedied. He recommends direct and unlimited commerce between Spain and the islands, government encouragement to large agricultural enterprises, instruction of the Indians in better methods of agriculture and the preparation of its products, and rewards for industry and application on their part. The production of opium for the Chinese market ought to be allowed in Filipinas, and heavy duties collected on its exportation. Enormous sums of money are yearly carried to India and China for fine cotton goods, which could as well be manufactured by the Filipinos if they knew how to dye these properly and had machinery for spinning the cotton thread; the government should take active and prompt measures to secure this desirable end. Closer relations should be established with Spain, whose government and merchants are urged to work together in behalf of this. Bernaldez concludes by showing “the necessity of forming a special code of laws for Filipinas,” and of [20]“a periodical visitation of that colony by officials from the Peninsula.” As appendix to his memorial, we present a summary of a similar document, written at nearly the same time by a merchant of long and varied commercial experience in the Orient and the Americas. Less official and formal, but more shrewd, alert, and liberal, this writer presents his views, with much clearness and force, on the decadence of the islands and the means of making them more prosperous and wealthy; and a comparison of these with the opinions of Bernaldez might well be helpful to the present administration of Filipinas.

In an appendix to this volume we present a brief account of the three Spanish Cortes in which the Philippines had representation; all these sessions occurred in the early part of the nineteenth century, one of the most disturbed and critical periods of Spain’s national existence. The most important measures of these Cortes concerning the Philippines were, the suppression of the Acapulco-Manila galleon and the abolition of the privileges formerly granted to the Compañia de Filipinas. In each of these assemblies efficient representation of the islands was barred by their distance from Spain and the difficulty of communication with that country, while, in general, political development was very backward. The final ruling, in the Constitution of 1837, by which special laws were devised for the government of Ultramar, appears to have been the only possible solution of the difficulty (at least for the Philippines). Finally, we furnish a list of the archbishops of Manila during the Spanish régime.

The Editors.

May, 1907. [21]

DOCUMENTS OF 1801–1840

Sources: The first document is compiled from Montero y Vidal’s Historia de Filipinas (tomo ii, pp. 360–573; iii, pp. 6–32); the second is reprinted from the original publication, a copy of which is in possession of Edward E. Ayer; the third is presented, partly in synopsis, from original MSS. in the Ayer collection.

Translations: The first and third are made by Emma Helen Blair. [23]



[At the beginning of VOLUME L may be found a brief summary of events during the latter third of the eighteenth century, a record which is here continued as above. As before, we epitomize from Montero y Vidal’s Hist. de Filipinas (tomo ii, pp. 360–573; iii, pp. 6–32), using his own language wherever practicable, usually distinguished by quotation marks.]

Under Governor Aguilar the “Ordinances of good government,” as revised by Governor Raon in 1768 (for which see VOL. L, pp. 191–264), were reprinted in the year 1801. “On September 8, 1804, Don Fray Juan Antonio Zulaibar, a Dominican, and formerly a professor in the university of Alcalá, took possession of the archbishopric of Manila.” In November following, the governor sent despatches to the king explaining his action in appointing to certain curacies regular instead of secular priests, saying that the latter were seldom qualified for those charges. He said, in regard to this: “No one is ignorant how different are the appearance and the degree of prosperity of all the churches and settlements administered by religious from those in the villages which are in charge of Indian clerics. Of the latter, some are doubtless men of virtue and pious intentions; but [24]in general it is notorious that, on account of their origin, lack of education, the very obscure condition in which they are reared, and the little (if any) knowledge that they possess, they do not inspire in their parishioners that respect and veneration with which the latter regard the religious—who, on account of being Spaniards, possess the art of dominating the minds of the Indians, in order to maintain them in those conditions on which depends the preservation of these your Majesty’s dominions. The religious know how to guide the Indians, without violence, to whatever ends are expedient for both religion and the State, as the results of never becoming too familiar with the natives. The Indian clerics not only follow the opposite course, but, lacking the dignity that belongs to their character as priests, they mingle familiarly with their parishioners not only in their sports, but in feasting and other things which are entirely unfitting; and not seldom they dress themselves in the same manner as do the natives, abandoning the very garb of their priestly estate.” He proceeded to say that only deplorable consequences could result from the surrender of the curacies entirely to the native priests; and that the religious of the orders must be employed therein, unless they could be supplied with properly qualified secular priests who were Spaniards. The same ideas were expressed by the municipal council of Manila, who said of the native priests: “The weak and yielding disposition which has been for so long a time noticed in these islanders does not permit in them that steadfastness which is so proper for the priestly character and the difficult office of the care of souls.”

“In June, 1805, the Frenchman Félix Renouard [25]de Sainte-Croix was commissioned to examine the gold mines in Mambulao (in Camarines); and in his report he explained that various gold mines existed there, with very rich veins, but some were difficult to develop and others had been abandoned. By royal order of July 5, 1805, was decreed the total independence of the Manila custom-house, ordaining that its manager should be under the immediate orders of the [treasury] superintendent.”1 On December 20, 1806, Aguilar created a Bureau of Vaccination at Manila, of which he was president; and regulations were made for public vaccination, which had a marked effect in diminishing the ravages of the smallpox. This governor gave much attention to the construction of public works, one of the more important of these being the highway from Manila to Cavite. He caused the streets of the capital to be lighted at public expense, and paved sidewalks to be built, and made the police system more efficient; he also did much to promote domestic industries.

Aguilar endeavored, throughout his term of office, [26]to check the incursions of the Moros. The pirates attacked even the coasts of Luzón in 1793, and an expedition sent out against them in December of that year accomplished almost nothing, being too late and ineffective. In the following year the governor called a council of the leading military officers and other persons experienced in Moro wars and the affairs of the southern islands, where it was shown that the Moros made captive some 500 persons a year, whom they rendered slaves—excepting the old, who “were sold to the inhabitants of Sandakan, who sacrificed these captives to the shades of their deceased relatives or of prominent personages,2 preserving the skull of the victim as a proof that they had complied with so barbarous a usage.” It was shown at this council that during the time from the establishment [27]of the vintas in 1778 until the end of 1793 the colony had spent the sum of 1,519,209 pesos fuertes for vessels, expeditions, wages, etc., in the warfare with the Moros, to say nothing of the losses and destruction caused by the pirate raids. The council resolved to abolish the present equipment of vintas and pancos, replacing these by lanchas carrying cannon, in six divisions of six lanchas and one panco each, with extra pay and honors to the crews; and to repair and strengthen all the forts on the coasts liable to attack. Aguilar attempted to open negotiations for peace with the Moro sultans; but these had no effect, the piracies still continuing. In the summer of 1794, a Portuguese trader of Manila who had carried goods to Joló was treacherously attacked on his return, when near Iloilo, by the same Moros with whom he had traded at Joló; but he defended his vessel bravely, and one of the leading dattos of Joló was killed in the fray. In August, 1795, two vessels of the Spanish royal navy arrived at Manila, with tidings that the English, again at war with Spain, were planning to occupy the Filipinas Islands; this compelled Aguilar to desist from further proceedings against the Moros, for the time. It was hoped that Álava and his powerful squadron (who remained at Manila during 1797–1802) might chastise the Moros, but nothing was accomplished in this direction—either through fear of another English invasion, or because of the disagreements between Aguilar and Álava.3 On January 21, 1798, two English ships attacked the Spanish post at Zamboanga, but were bravely repulsed with much damage to the invaders. [28]In that year a strong force of Moros attacked the village of Baler and others inland from the eastern coast of Luzón [where now is the province of Principe], constituting the oldtime missions of Ituy; they devastated these towns, and seized four hundred and fifty captives, among them three parish curas, one of whom was sold by them for 2,500 pesos. These pirates were established in Burías Island for four years, from which center they harried the neighboring coasts. In 1799, the authorities decided that it was more expedient that the warfare with the Moros be carried on by the provincial authorities, with the direction and aid of the central government; and instructions to this effect were sent to all the alcaldes-mayor. In 1800 Aguilar established friendly and commercial relations with Bandajar, sultan of Borneo; and on November 4, 1805, his governor at Zamboanga, Francisco Bayot, made a treaty of peace with Mahamad Ali Mudin, sultan of Joló, in which the latter agreed to forbid any foreigners to reside in his dominions without the consent of the Spanish government, and in case of war to close his ports to enemies of Spain. In 1804–05 English cruisers were frequently seen off the coasts of Filipinas, and they even attempted to capture several villages on the Mindanao coast, but were repulsed.

Plan of a portion of Manila, showing new works constructed December 15, 1770–June 15, 1771, drawn by the engineer Dionisio Kelly, 1771

Plan of a portion of Manila, showing new works constructed December 15, 1770–June 15, 1771, drawn by the engineer Dionisio Kelly, 1771

[From MS. map (in colors), in Archivo general de Indias, Sevilla]

On Aguilar’s death (August 8, 1806), the rule of the islands was assumed by the king’s lieutenant at Manila, Mariano Fernández de Folgueras; and his first measures were for the defense of Manila, as there were rumors of another attack by the English. In the summer of 1807, there arose a rebellion in the mountains of Ilocos Norte, begun by certain Spanish deserters from Vigan in conjunction with some vagabond [31]Indians; afterward it spread to many of the Ilocans, who resented the government monopoly of wine and prohibition of native manufacture of basi (a liquor produced by the fermentation of the juice of sugar cane). This revolt was put down without much difficulty, and the leaders were hanged at Manila; much was accomplished by the Augustinian fathers of Ilocos in restoring peace. In February, 1809, the news arrived at Manila of the French invasion of Spain, and the captivity of Fernando VII; the Manila authorities promptly declared their loyalty to that monarch. Somewhat later a French schooner of war was captured off the coast of Batangas, and the French authorities at Isle de France endeavored to persuade those at Manila that England, not France, was the enemy of Spain, and that the people of Filipinas ought to support the French interests. Folgueras answered, refusing to accept any such propositions, and would do no more than to return the French prisoners from the captured vessel.

On March 4, 1810, the new proprietary governor Manuel González Aguilar, assumed his office. On February 14 preceding, a decree had been issued by the Spanish government granting to all the colonies in America and to Filipinas representation in the Spanish Cortes by deputies chosen by the various capital cities. The sessions of this Cortes began on September 24, 1810, and Filipinas was represented therein by acting deputies; afterward, one was duly chosen (Ventura de los Reyes) by the municipality of Manila, according to the forms required.4 “In the jurisdiction of each village in the Philippine [32]archipelago, there are extensive communal lands, in which the natives can keep, almost without cost and easily guarded, their herds of cattle and horses. In regard to these lands (which in that country are called estancias [“ranches”]), the new governor framed a useful ordinance, which remained in force, with good results, during a long period. (It has now fallen into disuse, and many of the communal lands have become the property, illegally acquired, of private persons.) Important service was rendered [to the country] by these ranches, on account of the increase of live-stock and its great cheapness; and a positive source of wealth for the provinces was initiated with the exportation of their cattle.” In the sessions of Cortes in 1811, a decree was issued (January 26) that trade in quicksilver should be free in all the Spanish dominions of Indias and Filipinas. In the summer of 1811, a new rebellion broke out among the natives of Ilocos Norte, some of whose chiefs attempted to found a new religion, in behalf of a deity whom they called Lungao;5 they endeavored to persuade the heathen mountain-dwellers of Cagayan to join them, but the insurrection was quelled promptly by the Spaniards, and the ringleaders put to death. It was in González Aguilar’s time that the Indians were allowed to render the services required from them for public works on [33]those in their neighborhood. In order to relieve the public anxiety and impatience caused by the dearth of news from the mother-country, the authorities of the colony undertook to publish a sort of gazette containing such information as was available from Europe—mostly received through English publications that came from Bengal. Accordingly, “the first newspaper in Filipinas made its appearance on August 8, 1811,”6 the second number appearing three days later; it was published during the rest of 1811 and part of 1812, and must have ceased for lack of material.7 “On account of the war which España was sustaining against the French invaders, the religious corporations agreed to contribute with their donations toward the expenses of so great an undertaking; the Order of Dominicans gave with that object, in August, 1812, the sum of 36,000 pesos. On March 19 the Constitution of 1812 was promulgated at Cádiz, and orders were issued that allegiance to it should be sworn in all the towns of the monarchy. The deputies signed it on the eighteenth, and among the signatures appears that of Don Ventura de los Reyes.” The Constitution was solemnly proclaimed in Manila on April 17, 1813, and the oath of allegiance was taken on the following day. A decree in [34]Cortes (July 3, 1813) extended to the veteran troops of the over-seas colonies the same scale of rewards as had been recently granted to the soldiers of the Peninsula. In that same year a special effort was made by the Spanish government to add to its revenues by pushing in the colonies the sale of bulls of the Crusade.8

A new governor arrived at Manila assuming command on September 4, 1813; this was José de Gardoqui Jaraveitia, who also had appointment as chief of the naval station. This exasperated the treasury officials, for thus the entire naval force was under one head, that sent against the pirates [which Aguilar had stubbornly kept separate from the naval bureau—see “Events in Filipinas,” VOL. L, pp. 23–74] being now taken from their control, with all its opportunities for their personal profit; and they opposed Gardoqui in whatever he proposed or undertook.9 On February 1, 1814, a fearful eruption [35]occurred in the volcano Mayón, which partially or wholly destroyed many villages in Albay and Camarines; hot stones, sand, and ashes were poured forth from the crater, and villages were thus set on fire, and their inhabitants killed. The slain numbered 12,000, besides many more seriously injured; and those who escaped lost all their possessions. The most fertile and beautiful districts of Camarines were converted into a desert of sand.

“The introduction into Filipinas of the political reforms established at the metropolis [of Madrid] were the occasion, in certain localities of the archipelago, of lamentable disturbances of public order. The Indians understood that the proclamation of the political creed of 1812, solemnly made known to the country, signified exemption from tributes and public services; and this absurd belief spread to such an extent that the governor of the islands found himself obliged to publish an edict on February 8, 1814, explaining the extent of the benefits conferred [by the Constitution], and the necessity which exists in every nation for paying contributions for supporting the expenses of the State. These explanations did not satisfy the Indians, and uprisings occurred in various places, principally in Ilocos Norte; the people claimed that they ought to be relieved, as were the notables, from polos and services, or the obligation of laboring on public works, as bridges, highways, churches, convents, school-houses, etc.,—an exaction which, according to them, did not go with the equality which was established among all by the Constitution; and it cost the alcalde-mayor of the [36]province his utmost efforts to restrain the Ilocanos from violence.” Still worse were the effects of the renewal of absolutism in Spain, on the return of Fernando VII from his captivity in France; for on May 4, 1814, he issued a decree abolishing the Cortes, and nullifying its acts, and immediately began a course of persecution and condemnation, even to death, of all the prominent Liberals in the country. He also reëstablished in Spain the Inquisition10 (which had been abolished by the Cortes on February 22, 1813), and the Society of Jesus. When the royal decrees were received in Filipinas, the Indians believed that they were false, and concocted in Manila; one thousand five hundred Ilocanos seized their arms, and began plundering, killing, and destroying throughout the province. This was mainly, however, a rebellion of the common people (Tagal, cailianes) against the ruling class, the principalía or notables; and the latter finally took arms against the rebels, aiding the Spaniards to suppress the insurrection. On July 20, 1814, a treaty of peace was made between Spain and France. “Gardoqui, by an edict of December 1, 1814, prohibited the introduction of opium into Filipinas, imposing on those who should violate this law six years of confinement in a presidio and the confiscation of the opium; and to those who were found smoking the drug a fortnight’s imprisonment for the first offense, thirty days for the second, and four years in presidio for the third. A term of eight days was allowed in order that persons who might possess unsold stocks of the said drug could deposit them in the custom-house for reshipment to [37]China. In the said year of 1814, there was built in the environs of the town of Laoag (Ilocos Norte) a leper hospital, at the expense of the charitable parish priest there, Fray Vicente Febras, an Augustinian; and this act is worthy of note, since this was the first establishment of the kind in the provinces of the Archipelago.” A royal decree of August 22, 1815, reëstablished the Jesuit order in the Indias and Filipinas; and another, dated December 11, commanded the seizure in the colonies of various political books and pamphlets, with penalties for their use in schools. After the death of Governor Aguilar, the Moro pirates were comparatively quiet for a time, but in 1813 they renewed their attacks on the Spanish territories, and during several years they harassed the latter, taking many captives, and even seizing several vessels, both Spanish and English, on the seas. Governor Raffles, of Java, after the restoration of that island by England to Holland, proposed to Gardoqui that they coöperate in occupying Joló and Mindanao; but the Spaniard declined this, protesting against any operations by the English in Spanish territory. “Gardoqui, during his term of office, caused the fortifications of Cavite to be repaired, making them very strong; he issued orders regulating weights and measures; he created the general administration for the revenues from wine; and he occupied himself greatly with the improvement and development of the tobacco plantations. The bandits, smugglers, and gamblers had been increasing at an alarming rate; and, in order that they might be promptly punished the governor appointed a military commission, headed by a lieutenant-colonel. Thanks to their energetic proceedings, the desired object was attained.” [38]Gardoqui’s last days were embittered, and his end hastened, by the treacherous act of one of his secretaries, who, by substituting a false report for the one which Gardoqui had dictated in favor of retaining the naval bureau, procured the governor’s unwitting signature to the former and thus made him appear to report adversely to the bureau; as a result, the bureau was suppressed by a royal decree of March 23, 1815. His disappointment and wounded honor so grieved him that his death soon resulted (December 9, 1816).

The command ad interim was again assumed by Folgueras, who held it during nearly six years. On December 17, 1819, he reëstablished the “Royal Economic Society of Filipinas,” as a result of royal orders to that effect issued in 1811 and 1813; and five days later its first session was held, the governor presiding, only two members of the original society being still alive.11 A month later, it met again, with sixty new members, and Manuel Bernáldez was chosen director of the association; and its new ordinances [39]were approved by the governor on July 24 following. Folgueras, learning that certain immunities and advantages had been granted to Cuba and Puerto Rico for the encouragement of agriculture, requested from the home government similar help for Filipinas; the crown decreed an investigation of the subject, but the fulfilment of this was delayed from time to time, so that not until 1848 was even a definite statement and proposal for action in this direction made.12 (This was done by Rafael Díaz Arenas, one of the four members of the Economic Society—to which the investigation had been referred—who had been appointed to prepare the data for a report to the crown; “but we do not know whether the Society accepted his proposal, or whether it reached any definite conclusion on the subject.”) In October of the year 1820, Manila was ravaged by a terrible epidemic of smallpox, which was especially fatal in the villages along the Pasig River; the corregidor of Tondo therefore issued an edict prohibiting the use of the river water. A public relief committee was organized to give the sick medical treatment and to furnish food to the poor; and the friars and the private citizens vied with the authorities in ministering to the victims of the pest. The medical men belonging to the ships anchored in the bay came to the city, and did all in their power to aid these benevolent efforts; but all these things only confirmed in the ignorant natives the fatal idea, already spread among them, that the disease was caused by the foreigners having poisoned the waters and used to this end the specimens of insects and other creatures [40]which they had collected for scientific purposes. A crowd of armed Indians therefore gathered in the square of Binondo on October 9, attacked the houses of the foreigners, and murdered twenty-seven persons—among whom was not one Spaniard; nor did they, in plundering the houses, rob any Spaniard. The governor sent out some troops, but they accomplished nothing in checking the riot, which ended only at nightfall; and he did nothing to prevent further crimes of this sort, so that the mob renewed their acts of violence the next day,13 plundering and [41]killing many Chinese of the suburbs. This aroused Folgueras to activity, and he sent out a large force of [42]soldiers to pursue the assassins; but the latter at once dispersed. A council of the authorities was called, [43]but there were discordant opinions among them, and they seem to have taken no definite action. The [44]municipal council of Manila called upon the governor for the proper legal proceedings in regard to [45]this scandalous and lawless uprising; and for this purpose he appointed a commission.14

In October, 1820, was created the office of general intendant of army and treasury, separate from the superior government; and it was conferred upon Colonel Luis Urréjola, with a salary of 5,000 pesos. In May, 1821, the Constitution of 1812 was again proclaimed in Filipinas, only to be again abrogated in 1824, as a result of Fernando VII’s triumph (with French aid) over the Liberal party in Spain. “Folgueras gave great impulse to the Economic Society of Friends of the Country; and he attempted to found in Manila a school of medicine, surgery, and pharmacy, commencing for this purpose the indispensable documentary evidence [expediente], but he did not succeed in carrying out this plan—a failure much to be regretted, because nearly all of the towns [in the islands] had neither physician nor drug-store. As a [46]compensation, the creation of the nautical academy was an excellent idea, for its practical results are of great value.” “In 1821 appeared the second periodical which was published in the country, entitled El Noticiero Filipino;15 [i.e., “The Philippine Intelligencer”]; and in the same year were published two others, El Ramillete Patriótico [“The Patriotic Bouquet”] and La Filantropía [“Philanthropy”]. The life of all was of short duration.”

Folgueras was replaced by a proprietary governor, Juan Antonio Martinez, who began to exercise that office on October 30, 1822. He brought with him many military officers from the Peninsula, “a measure counseled by Folgueras, in view of the deficiency of officers in the regiments of Filipinas, and the little confidence which they inspired; and this was the cause or pretext which he advanced to the court to exculpate himself for not having adopted more energetic measures when the melancholy assassinations were committed by the Indians among the foreigners in 1820. The body of officers in the army of Filipinas was almost entirely composed of American [47]Spaniards. These were greatly displeased at the increase of Peninsular officers, partly because they supposed that thus their own promotions would be stopped, and partly on account of race antagonisms.” They talked so much against the newcomers that the governor became distrustful, and finally discovered that the American officers were plotting and conspiring against authority; he consequently arrested the persons suspected of this intrigue, and sent them to Spain (February 18, 1823)—among them being Luis Rodríguez Varela, styled El Conde Filipino [“The Filipino Count”];16 and the factor of the Company of Filipinas, José Ortega. Nevertheless, the plots continued, and the authorities sent him who appeared to be the leader in these, Captain Andrés Novales, to fight the pirates in northern Mindanao; he embarked (June 1, 1823), but was driven back by a storm, and immediately he and his accomplices determined to “declare themselves openly against the authority of España,” and set up a government of their own. The insurgents (some eight hundred in number) seized the cabildo house, and incarcerated therein the leading military chiefs and some magistrates; then they murdered Folgueras, and took from his pockets the keys of the city; and they fortified themselves in the royal palace, and attempted to seize the artillery quarters. Here they were resisted [48]bravely by a few loyal officers and men, and word was conveyed to the governor, who collected the troops available and sent these against the palace. The insurgents there were soon overcome, and many abandoned their posts and fled; Novales was made a prisoner, taken before a court-martial—to whom he declared that he had no accomplices, and was alone guilty of seducing the troops—and with the sergeant Mateo (who had commanded the insurgent force in the palace) was shot that afternoon, as also was Lieutenant Ruiz, who had assassinated Folgueras. Amnesty was extended to all the remaining prisoners, except six officers, who were shot soon afterward. On October 26, 1824, great damage was done in Manila by a severe earthquake, which destroyed the barracks, several churches, and many houses; and this was followed (November 1) by a fearful hurricane, which ruined many buildings and wrecked a multitude of sailing vessels. In this same year the Economic Society founded a monthly periodical entitled Registro Mercantil17 [“The Mercantile Register”].

The ravages of the Moro pirates continuing, and becoming each year more menacing,18 Martínez sent [49]out an expedition against them (February 29, 1824), which laid waste the shores of Joló and southern Mindanao, and killing a considerable number of Moros, among whom were three of their fiercest and most treacherous dattos. Martínez advocated such operations as this, as the only means of stopping the piracies of the Moros. During the period of 1823–29, the Augustinian missionary Fray Bernardo Lago succeeded in reducing to village life and converting more than eight thousand Tinguianes and Igorrots in the province of Abra, forming the mission of Pidigan. In 1825 Martínez was replaced by Mariano Ricafort Palacín y Abarca, and departed for Spain; a few days after leaving Manila he died, and was buried in Cochinchina.

Ricafort assumed office on October 14, 1825, and by royal orders also took possession of the intendancy of exchequer, although Urréjola was continued in its charge; but in the following January Ricafort concluded that “this dual command was impossible,” and restricted the intendant to certain routine functions, at the same time asking the approval of the home government for this proceeding. He had brought with him a portrait of Fernando VII, presented by the king to his colony of Filipinas; the municipal council of Manila decided to pay this portrait the same honors as if the king himself had visited the islands, and during the week of December 19–25 festivities of every kind were conducted, with the utmost display and magnificence. (Five years later, orders from the Spanish government were received at Manila, censuring the extravagant expenditures on that occasion, said, to amount to some 16,000 pesos, as an unwarranted and blamable use of municipal [50]funds, and regulating, for the future, expenditures of this sort.) A royal decree of June 8, 1826, ordained that the secularization of parish curacies should cease, and that those ministries should be restored to the religious orders, which was accordingly done. On September 15 of that year Fray Hilarión Diez, an Augustinian, took possession of the archbishopric of Manila, replacing Zulaibar, who had died on March 4, 1824. In June a circular letter was sent by Ricafort to the provincial governors, reminding them of the law (art. 26 of the “Ordinances of good government”) which forbade them to hinder in any way the trade in the products of the provinces, whether by Spaniards, natives, or mestizos, and whether in kind or with money, ordering them to permit trade freely everywhere, without any delays or exactions against those doing business. In 1827 Ricafort sent an expedition against Joló, which was kept off by the valor of the Joloans; but the Spaniards burned and ravaged the settlements on the shores of Illana Bay, doing the Moros much damage. In that same year the Spanish government reëstablished the naval bureau at Manila, independent of the captain-general, and Pascual Enrile was appointed as its chief; he proceeded to reorganize all branches of the service, including that intended to serve against the pirates, whom he was able to restrain to a great extent; and he constructed several cruisers and other vessels, one of which remained in active service for forty years. He established the jurisdiction of the bureau throughout the archipelago, creating port-captains for Iloilo, Capiz, Cebú, and Pangasinán. Ever since the insurrection of 1744 in Bohol, caused [51]by the imprudence of the Jesuit Morales, the insurgents had (under their chief Dagohoy) maintained hostilities, not only against the Spaniards, but even harassing their own countrymen who occupied the coastal villages of that island. The Recollects, in charge of the missions of Bohol after the expulsion of the Jesuits, tried to persuade the rebels to submit to Spanish authority, and secured from Governor Raon a general amnesty for them; but it resulted only in their defying further the authority of the government, which was long unable to take any measures for subduing them. Finally, in 1827, the danger to the loyal villages of Bohol was so menacing that the authorities were compelled to protect them and reduce the insurgents; and to this end Ricafort sent powerful expeditions (May, 1827, and April, 1828), which after strenuous efforts compelled the rebels to submit.19 That governor accomplished [52]much during his term of office for the promotion of agriculture. He ordained (1825 and 1826) that the native gobernadorcillos should furnish to agriculturists the idle and unoccupied Indians within their jurisdictions, to work on the estates, these laborers being paid their daily wages; and on October 30, 1827, that all complaints in civil cases relating to farm laborers should be settled by the magistrates as promptly and simply as possible, “observing the contracts and usages of the Indians, when these are not unjust,” and that no Indian laborer should be imprisoned for a purely civil debt (save those to the royal exchequer), nor should his animals, tools, lands, or house be seized therefor. The Spanish minister of the exchequer, Luis López Ballesteros, also took a paternal interest in the islands, and secured royal decrees for the benefit of their industries. One of these (dated April 6, 1828) encouraged the importation into Filipinas of all machinery suitable for spinning and weaving cotton, offered public aid to private enterprises for improvement in weaving and dyeing, and promised protection and encouragement to all projects for promoting native manufactures of cloth; and made the exportation of raw cotton from the islands free, in order to promote the cultivation of that plant. Another decree (of the same date) permitted the free importation [53]of all kinds of agricultural machinery and implements into Filipinas; and authorized premiums and rewards from the public funds to Filipino farmers who should first make large plantations of coffee, cacao, cinnamon, and cloves, as also to those who should make most progress in the plantations of Chinese cinnamon [canelón], tea, and mulberry-trees, and in raising silk, etc. Those who kept in cultivation a certain area of land, and day-laborers who continued to work for a certain number of years, were exempted from paying tributes; and the native farmers were allowed to keep cockpits in operation daily and without tax, on the estates which they cultivated. “In spite of so many privileges, not many of them were inclined to the cultivation of their fields.” Another royal order (April 6, 1828) made important regulations regarding the Chinese residing in the islands; they were to be gathered into villages, as were the Indians; their heads of barangay were to collect the tributes, as in the Indian villages, being allowed three per cent of the collections for their trouble; they were classified into three groups—those who were engaged in foreign or wholesale trade, those in domestic or retail trade, and artisans of all classes—who were obliged to pay a monthly tax of ten, four, and two pesos respectively; those who had settled in the islands, but were not married, must return to China within six months; and any Chinaman who failed to pay his tax for three months was to be sent to compulsory labor on some estate, at a specified wage, from which should be deducted two pesos a month until his tax dues should be paid.20 Still another royal order of [54]the same date gave free permission to any person of sufficient means to cultivate the opium poppy in Filipinas and export its product therefrom; and ordered that its culture should begin on lands close to Manila. Another decree ordained the establishment of a mint at Manila; but this desirable measure was not carried out until many years afterward, and the islands meanwhile had to suffer from the wretched clipped and debased currency which had so long prevailed there. On October 13, 1828, Ricafort published an edict that all money which came to the islands coined by the revolted Spanish colonies of America should be recoined at Manila, taxing it one per cent for this recoinage. On November 9 following, a long but not destructive earthquake occurred. In that same year a conspiracy was set on foot by some civil officials; it was discovered, and its promoters sent to Spain. As a result, the authorities created a public vigilance commission, and demanded more troops from Spain; a regiment was accordingly sent to Manila in 1830. By royal decree of October 27, 1829, it was provided that the post of superintendent of the exchequer should be filled by the intendant of the army and treasury; accordingly this charge was assumed (September 9, 1830) by Francisco Enriquez, who for two years had been intendant succeeding Urréjola. In January, 1829, an officer named Guillermo Galvey [55](whose duty it was to follow up smugglers in Pangasinán and Ilocos) conducted an expedition into the district of Benguet; an interesting account of this is found in the diary left by him. By royal decree of April 5, 1820 Spanish vessels were permitted to enter British ports just as British vessels were admitted to Spanish ports. Ricafort, having finished his government of Filipinas, sailed for Spain at the end of 1830. He was a governor of good judgment and much energy, and did much to improve the condition of Manila and of the country. He issued edicts imposing penalties on those who should sing obscene songs, and on blasphemers, gamblers, beggars, and parents who brought up their children in evil ways; and he “made provision for a general domiciliary visitation of Manila and the formation of a list of its citizens, which measure resulted in many persons of bad antecedents abandoning the capital. He also decreed standards for weights and measures, which unfortunately soon fell into disuse; and he created a military commission with power to execute evildoers, which fulfilled the object of its creation.”

Ricafort was succeeded (December 23, 1830) by Pascual Enrile y Alcedo, a most zealous and able governor. He personally visited the northern provinces of Luzón, accompanied by his relative and adjutant, José María Peñaranda (afterward the governor of Albay), a military engineer, who afterward made journeys and surveys in a large part of the rest of that island; this resulted in carefully prepared itineraries, plans, and maps, which were utilized in the construction of highways and bridges, and the establishment of postal routes, which opened up communication between regions before destitute of such [56]facilities, and sometimes in places heretofore deemed impassable. The navigable rivers and bayous of Pangasinán were explored and mapped; a highway was made in Pampanga which should be safe from the overflow of Lake Canarem; and explorations were made from east to west in Luzón for the sake of bringing the shores of the island into communication with the fertile plains of the interior. On May 14, 1834, Peñaranda was made corregidor or governor of the province of Albay, “which experienced a complete transformation during his just and beneficent rule. To him it owed its most important roads, bridges, and public edifices, and the promotion of its agriculture, on which account his name is venerated by the inhabitants of Albay; they perpetuated the memory of this illustrious but modest patriot by erecting, some years after his death, a monument to him in the plaza of the capital of the province.” The Economic Society of Friends of the Country contributed to the development of agriculture, in the time of Enrile, by its reports, memoirs, and material support. We read with surprise, however, that in 1833 this Society, in an opinion requested from it by the home government, opposed the establishment of a mint at Manila, and informed Enrile that such institution was at that time unnecessary. In March, 1831, Galvey made an expedition into the country of the Igorrots; and in the following December, to the district of Bacún. A decree of May 9, 1831, established a custom-house in Zamboanga, “in order to prevent the frauds committed by foreigners in the port of Joló, and to facilitate and promote expeditions to that point.” A royal decree of April 24, 1832, substituted the garrote for the gallows in capital [57]punishments. Another, dated February 16, 1833, provided for the adjustment and management of the funds belonging to the obras pías, which charge was entrusted later to a committee composed of the governor of the islands, some of the treasury officials, and the archbishop.21 The treasury officials, by a decree [58]of July 3, 1833, accepted the proposal of certain persons to establish “a lottery, at their own account and risk, offering to pay to the treasury forty per cent [of the receipts?], besides twenty-five per cent of the value of the tickets which composed each drawing, after furnishing adequate security as a guarantee for the fulfilment of their promise.” The exclusive privilege of this lottery was granted to these persons for a period of five years. Enrile created the Guía de forasteros [“Guide for Strangers”] of Filipinas; it first appeared in 1834. Our author reproduces (t. ii, pp. 539, 540) the table of contents of this annual. Fernando VII died on September 29, 1833, and was succeeded by his daughter Isabel II, to be until her majority under the regency of her mother, Maria Cristina; this was quickly followed by the Carlist insurrection, the reactionary party being headed by the young prince Carlos, who was proclaimed king as Carlos V, and civil war ensued, which for seven years stained the soil of Spain with the blood of her own sons. By royal order of August 10, 1834, the Chinese traders were restricted to the Parián, and those Chinese who were allowed to reside in the provinces must devote themselves to agricultural pursuits. Enrile issued an edict on October 1, 1834, removing the special duties imposed on the Chinese champans, and placing them under the same regulations as the vessels of other foreign nations. On February 2, 1835, the official despatches arrived from Spain which decreed the restoration of the constitutional regime and the convocation of the Cortes. Enrile strengthened the naval forces sent against the [59]pirates [la marina sutil, composed of light-draught vessels], and was able to drive them away from the coasts of Visayas. He also increased the area planted in tobacco, enforced just weights and measures, endeavored to correct the evils resulting from the debased money of the islands, and caused a light-house to be erected on Corregidor Island. Our writer commends this governor as being “one of the most intelligent and industrious who have ever ruled Filipinas.” “To him the country owes material improvements of the utmost value, of so much importance as the great highways of Luzón, which have facilitated the intercourse between the provinces, bringing them into postal communication, one after another, by means of the mail-routes established by him; and the administration of the colony is indebted to him for regulations and procedures that are scientific and orderly, in all the branches that have contributed to the development of the general welfare, making considerable increase in the public wealth. Agriculture, commerce, and navigation likewise experienced the beneficial results of this illustrious governor’s judicious management; and his term of office was the source of the rapid progress which has been made from that time by these most important factors of the general welfare—in great part, thanks to the impulse received from the measures, dictated by him, which conduced to the natural development of those industries.” Enrile resigned his post, and returned to Spain early in 1835.

He was succeeded ad interim (March 1, 1835) by Gabriel de Torres, at the time the commander of the army [segundo cabo] under Enrile; as a military officer, he immediately proposed plans for the improvement [60]of the military service; but these were checked by his premature death,22 less than two months after entering on his office. In his place, the command was assumed (April 23) by the officer next him in rank, Juan Crámer; but he surrendered this office on September 9 following to the new segundo cabo, Pedro Antonio Salazar Castillo y Varona. The latter, on April 25, 1836, issued an edict that “the plain [sencillas] pesetas coined in the Peninsula should be accepted [in the islands] at their lawful value of four reals vellón instead of five, as if they were pillar coins [columnarias];23 accordingly [61]they began to circulate, having been recently introduced into the islands.” On June 11, 1836, the superintendency of treasury affairs was assumed by Urréjola in place of Enríquez.24 On July 28, Salazar found it necessary to issue an edict for the enforcement of the laws which prohibited carrying gunpowder and firearms to the Indias, and selling them in countries hostile to Spain; this referred especially to Moroland, where evidently the pirates had been thus aided by unscrupulous traders to make their raids against the northern islands. Salazar thought that he could restrain those piracies by carrying on commerce with the Moros, and therefore made a treaty with the sultan of Joló, Mahamad Diamalud Quiram (September 22, 1836), which stipulated “that every three-masted ship which made port at Joló with Chinese passengers from Manila should pay 2,000 pesos fuertes, and smaller vessels in proportion to their size;” but “the most important cargo which went from Manila to Joló never exceeded 2,500 pesos. The Joloan barks which should go to Zamboanga were to pay a duty of one per cent, and those which entered at Manila two per cent; but no Joloan bark was accustomed to go to Manila.” The governor of Zamboanga also made a treaty with [62]another Moro ruler; but it resulted only in increasing the insolence of the pirates, who paid no attention to their treaties. At the beginning of 1836, Salazar sent an expedition under Galvey to occupy the Igorrot country; but it was, despite Galvey’s remonstrances, sent in too great haste, and without adequate preparations, and too near the beginning of the rainy season; they reached that region, and built some forts, but so many of the soldiers were attacked by sickness that the expedition was forced to give up the undertaking and retire, “without any other result than the expenditure of several thousand dollars.”25 In that same year, Peñaranda conducted with brilliant success an expedition to dislodge the pirates from Masbate Island, where they had fortified themselves. “Afterward, he established a system of signals in the provinces of the south, to watch the movements of those pirates.” On January 26, 1837, Salazar sent an urgent request to the Spanish government for the despatch of Spanish regulars to supply the parish curacies throughout the archipelago, as (for the same reasons advanced by former governors) he considered the Indian clerics unfit for that purpose. In view of the secularization of the orders that had been decreed in Spain,26 he desired that [63]some two hundred of the friars there should be sent to Filipinas, which, added to those already in the islands, would be sufficient for the parishes. The political disturbances in Spain found some reflection in the distant colonies; and in February, 1837, there was danger of a tumult arising, “some insisting that the Constitution should be proclaimed, in order that they might utilize the change to their own advantage;” among these were several officers of high rank. Absurd reports were circulated throughout Manila: that the governor was opposed to the proclamation, and was intending to banish certain persons from the country, and that he was a Carlist, etc. Violent measures were proposed by some of the radicals, but these were resisted by some of the cooler heads; and many citizens opposed the proclamation of the Constitution, fearing that serious disturbances would result. Salazar, being informed of these things, promised that when the royal despatches arrived he would open them in the presence of all, and fulfil whatever orders he should receive from the home government. This occurred on August 26 of that year, and the royal orders decreed that no change in political affairs should be made in Filipinas until the Cortes should decide the matter; this and Salazar’s tact reconciled the contending factions. At the same time he received a decree reducing in all departments the military forces of the islands; the authorities resolved to suspend the execution of this order, and sent an [64]envoy to remonstrate with the government on this subject—for this purpose choosing one of the officers who had been most prominent in the recent controversy, and thus removing from Manila a person whose presence there was regarded as dangerous. By royal order of February 1, 1836 (published in the islands on March 31, 1837), order was given that there should be compiled and published in Manila every year tables of the values of the moneys from the new provinces of America, in order that their value might, in their circulation in Manila, be properly adjusted to the Spanish peso; consequently, the recoinage of American money was stopped. A later edict ordered that from June 1, 1837, “the coin called cuarto should circulate at the rate of twenty to the real,27 instead of seventeen as hitherto, on account of the greater size and weight of the new coins; and to this new subdivision were adjusted the prices of the measures of tobacco established therefor, and the revenues from wine. Also the circulation of cigars [tabacos] in place of money was forbidden; the Indians had introduced this on account of the scarcity of copper coin, and because the greater part of that then current was counterfeit, on which account a multitude of disputes had arisen. The governor decided, moreover, that the Spanish peseta should be accepted at thirty-two cuartos, five [pesetas], therefore, corresponding to the peso fuerte.” A royal order of May 31, 1837, declared certain jurisdictions—Caraga, Samar, Iloilo, Antique, Capis, Albay, Camarines Sur, and Tayabas—to be those of governors, at once military and political, who should be military [65]officers appointed by the War Department; all the rest (excepting Cavite, Zamboanga, and the Marianas, which also were filled like the foregoing) were classed as alcaldeships, and appointments thereto should be made from the attorney-general’s office [Ministerio de Gracia y Justicia]. The Constitution of 1837 was decreed and sanctioned by the Cortes on June 8 of that year; and it was ordained by that body that the provinces of Ultramar should be governed by special laws, a provision reiterated by succeeding constitutions. “From that time Filipinas lost its representation in the Cortes.”

Chart of the port of San Luis, in the Marianas Islands, 1738; by Adjutant Domingo Garrido de Malavar

Chart of the port of San Luis, in the Marianas Islands, 1738; by Adjutant Domingo Garrido de Malavar

[Photographic facsimile from original MS. in Archivo general de Indias, Sevilla]

On August 4, 1837, arrived at Manila the new governor of the islands, Andrés García Camba, a knight of the Order of Santiago. He had already spent ten years in Filipinas (April, 1825, to March, 1835), and had gone to Spain as the deputy of Manila to the Cortes, an honor twice again conferred upon him. He was received with the utmost enthusiasm, although the Liberals at Manila were irritated by the action of the Cortes in depriving the islands of representation therein; but Camba himself had liberal views, as well as a generous and kindly nature, and gained the good-will of that party. This made trouble for him, however, in another direction. The civil war in Spain aroused there great partisan bitterness, which spread to the colonies; and in Filipinas was a Carlist and reactionary faction, who opposed Camba in every way. “The regular clergy, as a body, were partisans of the Pretender, and not only gave him their sympathy but aided him, as well as the Carlist publications, with their money. The court of Madrid was aware of this attitude of the friars, and had already sharply censured Salazar [66]for his indulgence and lenity toward them. Several Carlist partisans had been banished from Spain to the Marianas, but had gone to Manila instead, and were not only unmolested there, but visited and entertained by many of the most prominent people of the city, and especially by the ecclesiastical element. Camba found that Carlist reunions were being held in the convents of San Juan de Dios and Santo Domingo, and that even the archbishop, [Fray José Segui] was an avowed adherent of the Pretender; the governor tried to conciliate the disaffected, but with little success, since the clergy, the Audiencia, and many influential persons, both citizens and officials, were jealous and hostile toward him.”28 He was obliged to compel the archbishop to deposit certain funds, belonging to the Cavite hospital, in the royal treasury, instead of the Dominican convent; also to arrest a Dominican friar for conducting treasonable correspondence with Carlists, and to send to Spain a military officer concerned therein. Notwithstanding Camba’s ability, integrity, and devotion to the interests of the islands, and his patience with his opponents, they exerted so much influence and carried on so many intrigues against him, not only in Manila but at Madrid, that they procured his recall to Spain;29 and on December 29, 1838, he surrendered [69]the governorship to his successor, Luis Lardizábal y Montoya. Notwithstanding the obstacles and difficulties which Camba continually encountered, he accomplished some important improvements in the administration,30 the chief of these being the reorganization of the postal service, which from 1838 was conducted under one bureau and on modern lines; he improved the means of communication between the provinces, and pushed forward the reduction of the heathen tribes. He informed the Spanish government that the attempts to make treaties and alliances with the sultans of Joló were of no use in bringing any permanent or substantial advantage to Spanish navigation and commerce. In 1837 was published the Flora de Filipinas of the Augustinian Fray Manuel Blanco, the first attempt to form a compendium of Philippine botany.31 A royal decree [70]of October 24, 1838, “created in Spain a consulting committee for the administration of colonial affairs, as members of the same being appointed, among others, the ex-governors of Filipinas Ricafort and Enrile.”

A royal order of November 16, 1838, had prohibited the holding of provincial chapter-sessions in Filipinas; the Recollect procurator at Madrid remonstrated with the government against this, and the matter was referred to the governor and archbishop of Manila. Lardizábal decided that the chapters should meet, and that the senior auditor of the Audiencia should attend those sessions, as the representative of the vice-regal patron. By a decree of August 31, the governor regulated the status of the Chinese in the islands. They were “classified as transients, those spending the winter [in the islands], and permanent residents. They were allowed to choose the occupation which best suited them, without any restriction. The resident Chinese who should be arrested [as being] without official permit [cédula] or passport were condemned to labor on the public works; and deportation to Zamboanga, Misamis, Paragua, and Calamianes was decreed for all those who were serving a prison term for failure to pay their capitation-tax, in both Manila and Cavite, with the object of securing by this means a larger population for those places.” On July 6, 1839, a weekly publication was begun in Manila entitled, [71]Precios corrientes de Manila [i.e., “Prices current at Manila”],32 in the Spanish and English languages. A royal decree of October 4, 1839, provided for the introduction and circulation of books in the islands; the fiscal must designate those that merited examination, and then they must be passed upon by two censors, appointed by the governor and the archbishop respectively, whose opinion must be submitted to the fiscal; and if “there shall appear sufficient ground for prohibiting the circulation of any work, because it may contain principles, opinions, or doctrines opposed to the rights of the legitimate government or to the religion of the State, it shall be not only seized but reshipped.”33 On July 15, 1840, was opened the School of Commerce, established at the request of the Board [Junta] of Commerce. “On November 11 Lardizábal repeated Ricafort’s edict of 1828, prohibiting foreigners from selling merchandise at retail and entering the provinces to trade.” At the end of this year important changes were made in the administration of financial affairs, all the revenues arising from government monopolies being united under one bureau; and another bureau was likewise created for the general administration of the tributes and [72]some other branches of revenue, as those from cockpits, tithes, etc.; while in all the general offices of supervision was introduced the system of bookkeeping by double entry, which had been established in the royal accountancy of the exchequer in 1839. The governor also issued instructions for more careful and accurate accounting being made of municipal property and local imposts, in order to prevent abuses and waste of funds. Lardizábal was soon weary of his command, although faithful to his duties while governor, and so earnestly entreated the home government to allow him to return to Spain that finally he gained this permission; and he departed on that voyage (February, 1841), only to die a few days after leaving Manila; he was buried on an islet near Java. He was succeeded by Marcelino de Oráa Lecumberri. [73]

1 “Originally, when the port of the capital of Filipinas was visited only by vessels from the Asiatic nations and a few Spanish ships, the exaction of duties was in the hands of the royal officials, according to the laws of the Indias. In 1779 Basco y Vargas ordained that those functionaries should attend only to collecting duties from the ships which navigated to the coasts of Coromandel, Malabar, Bengala, Java, Cantón, Acapulco, and Cádiz; and that the duties proper to the entrance or outgo of products and commodities in the inter-island commerce should be in charge of the director of alcabala. From this originated the foundation of the custom-house, it being completed by royal decrees of 1786 and 1788, from which time it was provided with the necessary force of men for collecting the import and export duties.” (Note by Montero y Vidal.) 

2 Cf. Forrest, Voyage to New Guinea, p. 368: “They believe the deity pleased with human victims. An Idaan or Maroot [a tribe in northern Borneo] must, for once at least, in his life, have imbued his hands in a fellow creature’s blood; the rich are said to do it often, adorning their houses with sculls and teeth, to show how much they have honored their author, and laboured to avert his chastisement. Several in low circumstances will club to buy a Bisayan Christian slave, or any one that is to be sold cheap; that all may partake the benefit of the execution. So at Kalagan, on Mindano, as Rajah Moodo informed me, when the god of the mountain gives no brimstone, they sacrifice some old slave, to appease the wrath of the deity. Some also believe, those they kill in this world, are to serve them in the next, as Mr. Dalrymple observes.” He also says (p. 271), that they pay “perhaps five or six Kangans” for an old slave, and that the above mountain is “in the district of Kalagan [i.e., Caraga], a little way west of Pandagitan, which emits at times smoke, fire, and brimstone.” This evidently alludes to Mt. Butulan, a volcano (now apparently extinct), in the extreme southern point of Davao province, Mindanao. 

3 See account of this at end of “Events in Filipinas,” the first document in VOL. L. 

4 See post, near the end of this volume, the document on the representation of Filipinas in the Spanish Cortes. 

5 “A fanatic, who, styling himself a new Christ, appeared to the fishermen and announced to them their true redemption—freedom from monopolies and tributes, and whatever could allure the unwary. This fanatic and more than seventy of his following, called ‘apostles,’ were seized, with their gowns, litters, flags, and other articles with which ‘the new god,’ as was reported, must make himself manifest.” (Official despatch, cited by Montero y Vidal.) 

6 It may be noted that in 1809 Folgueras had, “in order to quiet the public anxiety” to know what was going on, published on two occasions a sort of gazette (called Aviso al público) of news regarding his encounter and correspondence with the French in that summer. (Montero y Vidal, ii, pp. 390, 391.) 

7 See Retana’s Periodismo filipino (Madrid, 1895), appendix i (pp. 533–559), in which a detailed account of this gazette, with lists of the articles in most of the numbers, is given by J. T. Medina. He concludes that it had fifteen numbers, irregularly issued, the last of which was dated February 7, 1812. 

8 According to Jagor (Reisen, pp. 108, 109), “the receipts from the sale of the bulls of the Crusade in 1819 were $15,930, in 1839, $36,390, and in 1860, $58,954. In the two years 1844–45 they rose to $292,115, because the families and the heads of barangay were forcibly obliged to accept the certificates of indulgences, ‘with the assistance and supervision of the curas and subordinate officials’ (who for this received 8 and 5 per cent respectively), and thus they were distributed in the houses—certainly one of the most shameless applications of the repartimiento system.” 

9 A note by Montero y Vidal cites José R. Trujillo, a Philippine official, as stating (1887) that the chief opponent and plotter against Gardoqui was Joaquin Cirilo de la Cajigas, the chief accountant of the treasury board and head of the naval bureau; he left a great fortune to his descendants, “who even now figure as rich men in the country, while the naval chiefs and officers who served here at that epoch did not bequeath to their descendants more than poverty and honor, although some of them had risen to high positions in the naval forces.” 

10 “The Holy Office was, however, again abolished by the Cortes, in its session of 1820. 

11 “In 1797, when on account of the decadence of the Society and the opposition of Aguilar it practically ceased its functions, its president at that time, the auditor Don Francisco Javier Moreno, placed on deposit in the Consulate [of commerce] 6,000 pesos, which at that period constituted all its funds. At the time of its reëstablishment, the capital of the Society consisted of 34,224 pesos, two reals, one grano in ready cash; a debt owed by the convent of San Juan de Dios, of 7,525 pesos—the remainder of the sum of 15,890 pesos, four reals, one grano, which by decree of the government dated April 1, 1805, were ordered to be paid for the rebuilding of that convent’s edifice; and twelve gold medals and 241 of silver. It was agreed to invest these funds in commerce by sea or land, according to circumstances.” (Pamphlet cited by Montero y Vidal.) 

12 For a brief account of this Society’s work, see note on “Agriculture” at end of VOL. LII. 

13 An interesting account of this event is furnished in a letter by Peter Dobell, then Russian consul in the Philippines, which is preserved in the New York Public Library; it is printed in the Bulletin of that institution for June, 1903, at pp. 198–200. Dobell went to Macao for medical treatment in July, 1820, and this letter was written from that city, on November 28 of that year. He thus writes: “I arrived with my wife and daughter at Manilla last March, was received with great apparent attention, politeness & hospitality. After living there a couple of months, however, I perceived that there existed a vast deal of jealousy and envy, against all strangers, and particularly those who resided or intended to form establishments in the country. Those ignorant people could not divest themselves of this feeling, even toward those, whose capitals, talents and industry, were directed to the most laudable pursuits, and promised to produce great public as well as private advantages to the colony. At this crisis several french ships were in the port, one or two Americans and a English ship from Bengal. In the French ships, had arrived a naturalist sent out by the government to make collections, and some persons, who intended to remain in the Philippines to cultivate sugar, cotton &c. &c. In the month of July last, I discovered that I had in my travels, contracted a disease, called by the Doctr Hydrocele and becoming very troublesome to me, I determined as there are no good surgeons in Manilla to pay a short visit to Macao with my family & return to my post, as soon as circumstances [41]would permit, after the operation. This I found, I could do the more conveniently, as my Nephew, a fine young Man of 23 years, had joined me at my arrival and I left him, in full charge of my office &c and departed. This envious disposition, on the part of the Spaniards, increased daily, against the Strangers, until an opportunity presented itself of gratifying their malignant hatred, in the most cruel & bloody manner & without themselves appearing to have any thing to do in the business. It is necessary first to tell you, that the new constitution, had been received during the prevalence of this feeling, giving extensive privileges & liberal encouragement to foreigners, who might think proper to settle in the Philippines & rendering the natives as free & equal, in rights, etc. as their former masters. This certainly made them a little unruly, but, if not secretly instigated, it would never have induced them to commit a crime, that makes humanity shudder. The ship from Bengal, was the Merope Captain Nichols and it was supposed she had brot into the colony the epidemic, that has ravaged all India, this year, under the name of the ‘Cholera Morbus.’ It made its appearance, in the beginning of October last, carrying off great numbers of the Indians every day. The humane French & other Strangers, who beheld these miserable wretches, dying around them without any medical aid, freely administered what medicines they had, and were actively & daily employed, in endeavoring to alleviate; the distress & cure the complaints of all those, who lived within the sphere of their exertions. This also became, a cause of jealousy and hatred and the villains, began immediately to exasperate the Indians by saying, ‘this poisonous disease, was introduced by the French & the other strangers, they have poisoned even the waters, and they administer poison to the sick, purposely to exterpate the whole race of Tagalians.’ The ferocious Indians wanted nothing farther to excite them to deeds of blood & plunder. On the 9th of October about 10 or 11 in the morning they collected, to the number of about 3,000 Men armed with pikes knives and bludgeons and proceeded coolly and deliberately to plunder and Massacre all the Strangers on whom they could lay their hands! [42]I have not time to give you the details of this shocking business, but you will certainly read them in the gazettes as I have sent both to England and Russia very full accounts for publication. Suffice it now to say that the Governor & the authorities were vainly implored for assistance. They came, it is true, with the troops, but it was only to behold with sang froid the horrid spectacle. Not a musket was fired to save the lives of those unfortunate and defenceless strangers, who to the number of 39 were plundered & cruelly massacred; some of them were so cut up & mangled it was impossible to recognize them. As the most of them were Roman Catholics, they were all collected and thrown into a hole together without the shadow of a ceremony or a stone to mark their graves! What is worse, the last accts from there down to the 9th of November mention that not a spanish life was lost, nor has a single native as yet suffered punishment for this most atrocious & horrible deed. My house was attacked & pillaged, my Nephew & a Mr Prince of Boston, who lived with him, made prisonners, and, after being near two days in the hands of the Indians, suffering the most abominable treatment, they luckily escaped Death. Eighty five Chinese & 11 English seamen were also plundered & assassinated. I have been obliged to represent this affair in its full suit of Black to my Government and have at the same time declared my intention of going back to Siberia, next April, where I shall await the orders of His Imperial Majesty …. I leave the place & those miscreants to themselves, from the conviction, that its commerce is ruined forever. In the first place they held their productions too high & paid too low for European commodities, so that, when the allowance of the half duties granted to the importers of sugars shall cease, no french ships will visit the Philippines to pay from 7 to 9 Dollars a pecul for Sugars. The Cadmus, you say will make money. If she does, she will I fancy be the only American ship that profits by its trade to Manilla. All those, who came out last year lost money on the sales of their cargoes, &, from what we hear of prices in America, and on the Continent, they must lose by the returns. But what will give the death blow to the prosperity [43]of the Philippines, is the late horrible massacre. All those french and other foreigners, who were anxious to have established themselves in commerce or on estates in the country, are now frightened off and certainly no one will find himself, confident enough to trust to a Government, which could permit such a massacre to take place, immediately under its eyes, when it had 5,000 men in arms, ready at a minutes notice to disperse the Mob. Thus situated, Manilla offers no chance of profit or Speculation; and I confess, however my hopes and wishes may have been disappointed, I turn from them with disgust & horror, better pleased to be ordered to live, in some remote corner of Siberia, on black bread & salt, than roll in wealth, amidst such an inhuman, illiberal and unchristianlike race of Men …. I must close my letter by informing you that the Captain General has refused all the applications for indemnification, from those who have been plundered; so that as yet, neither the punishment due to the assassins has been inflicted, nor redress made to the unfortunate people who were robbed.”

By the kindness of James A. LeRoy, the Editors have in their hands a copy (furnished by Dr. Pardo de Tavera from the original in his possession) of a decree issued by Governor Folgueras (dated at Manila, October 20, 1820), addressed “to the natives of the Filipinas Islands, and especially to those of the district of Tondo,” in which he rebukes them severely for thus violating the law of nations, under the influence of “a general frenzy,” and “led astray and infuriated by certain malicious persons.” He characterizes their belief that the strangers had poisoned the waters as a foolish and absurd notion, which “the mountain Negritos or the Moros of Joló and Mindanao would be ashamed to entertain;” and reminds them that the strangers whom they have plundered and slain were not only friends and brethren, but the very persons on whom the prosperity of the islands must depend, since they supplied a market for the produce of the country. He then presents the report which has been made by an official whom the governor had specially appointed (October 13) to investigate this idea of the foreigners’ crime, which is to the following effect: “As [44]the evidence of guilt [cuerpo de delito, the same as the Latin corpus delicti] in the poisoning which is charged, the Indians have brought to us, among the spoils which they plundered from the houses of the Frenchmen, various animals of different forms, and among them a serpent, of quite the usual size, one of those which they call ‘house-snakes,’ in a dissected state; others, with some little shellfish, preserved in spirits of wine, in a crystal flask; in another, two granos of muriatic baryte; a quantity of Peruvian bark, which in my opinion would weigh about an arroba and a half; and a box of sheet-tin about a vara long, one-fourth as wide, and six dedos thick, in which also was found a mass of insects, but already decaying; and finally, in the house of a woman who had been accused of being an agent of the French for the alleged poisoning, a little package of some black powders in China paper [i.e., rice paper].” The official states that these animal specimens have evidently “no other object than to enrich cabinets of natural history,” and could not in any way have been used for injuring human beings. The muriatic baryte was for use in analyzing mineral waters, and was, moreover, useful in various diseases. The Peruvian bark was, as all might know, a useful medicine and had often been helpful in checking the cholera itself. The black powders, it was also decided, were also of medicinal value; and the entire story is characterized as a fiction and delusion. The official regrets that it was believed by so many persons who should have known better than to accept so gross an error; “but it is certain that they did, and, among them, many of the clergy; and with this the delusion attained such power that it has caused the very scandalous deeds which all good persons lament; for it is certain that there is no better way of propagating an error than for persons of authority to adopt it. There is no doubt, it appears, that this foolish idea of poisoning had its origin in the ignorance of the Indians; but there is as little doubt that malicious persons, imposing upon this folly and lack of knowledge in the Indians, incited them to perpetrate the assassinations and robberies of the disastrous days, October 9 and 10.” He adds that one of the books brought to him by the Indians, which they [45]had taken from the house of the French naturalist, was filled with sketches of fishes, mollusks, and birds peculiar to the country, which plainly showed that he was only making zoological observations. In view of all these things, Folgueras calls upon the natives to repent of their sin, to surrender to the authorities the instigators of the tumult, to restore to the plundered foreigners what had been stolen from them, and to denounce the authors of the murders, that justice might be done to these evil persons. These exhortations are especially addressed to the inhabitants of Binondo, “which has been the theatre of the most horrible tragedy, and has covered itself with blood and ignominy.” This decree is published by Dr. Pardo de Tavera, from the original printed edition, in his Biblioteca filipina, pp. 45–47. 

14 In his scarce third volume of the Informe, Mas says that the governor, either wittingly or unwittingly, did well in not sending out the soldiers, who were natives, until the fury of the people had spent itself; as otherwise all discipline might easily have been lost, and the soldiers have joined with their kindred in the massacre. 

15 Our author gives the name of this periodical incorrectly; it should be El Noticioso Filipino—see Retana’s Periodismo filipino, appendix ii (pp. 561, 563). It was apparently begun on July 29, 1821; it was issued on Sundays. Its publication ceased before November 1 of that year. This information was furnished to Retana by Pardo de Tavera; he also supplied accurate data for La Filantropia (pp. 561–563), which began on September 1, 1821; it seems to have ceased publication in 1822. El Ramillete Patriótico is known only by an allusion in one of the numbers of Filantropia, which speaks of the former as having been “silenced” (presumably by the authorities). Pedro Torres y Lanzas gives (p. 565) a description of Nos. 27–37 (March 16–May 25, 1822) of Filantropia. 

16 Regarding this man and his works, see Retana’s El precursor de la político redentorista (Madrid, 1894); it is specially devoted to Varela’s Parnaso filipino (Sampaloc, 1814). Retana says of him: “It is unquestionable that his writings in prose and verse encouraged among the Indians the wrong interpretation which was given to the Constitution of 1812, from which resulted the series of insurrections, fortunately isolated, which took place in Filipinas.” 

17 This publication was begun in January, 1824, and continued until May, 1833; at first two hundred and fifty copies were printed. It was finally obliged to suspend publication, for lack of funds. See Retana’s Periodismo filipino, pp. 10–14, and 566; at the latter place, Torres y Lanzas describes a file of Nos. 49–109 (lacking two numbers) of this publication, which is presumably preserved in the Archivo general at Sevilla. 

18 In 1823 the pirates captured the provincial of the Recollects, with one of his friars; and that order had to furnish 10,000 pesos for their ransom. (Montero y Vidal, Hist. de Filipinas, ii, p. 482.) 

19 General Ricafort published a relation of this enterprise, dated at Manila, December 30, 1829; he describes the island, presents an historical sketch of the insurrection in Bohol since 1744 and the efforts to quell it, and at the end furnishes a tabulated statement of the expeditions sent by his orders, with number of men, expenditures, etc., and of their results—a statement signed by Captain Manuel Sanz, the leader of the expedition, and dated at Talibon, August 31, 1829; to this is added the signed statement by the parish curas of Bohol that the numbers of insurgents who have been conquered or have submitted to the Spanish rule agree with their respective registers. According to this account, the number of insurgents reduced or submitted was 19,420; to this must be added 98 “banished for their rebellious dispositions,” and 395 “obstinate persons who died at the hands of the troops,” and an unknown (“for lack of information”) number of those killed in the year 1827 and on March 28 of 1828, and more than 3,000 souls who have fled to other provinces. Some of the troops were Spaniards from Manila, but the main part of the force was composed of Indians from Bohol and Cebú, to the number of 5,970 and 54 respectively; 294 of the former and 32 of the latter deserted the ranks, and 4,977 Boholans and 22 Cebuans were at the end disbanded, as being on the sick list; and very few were either killed or wounded in the campaign. The reduced insurgents were formed into the following new villages: Catigbian, with 1,967 souls; Batuanan, with 6,266 souls; Cabulao, with 790; Balilijan, with 2,100; and Vilar, with 930. In other villages were distributed the remaining insurgents. 

20 “The Chinese refused to accept their reduction into villages; more than eight hundred elected to return to their own country; four hundred odd were assigned to labor on the public works, as being insolvent; and about a thousand fled to the mountains in order to elude payment and punishment. The intendant, in view of the difficulty in collecting [their] taxes, explained to the government the expediency of modifying the enactment; and this was done in 1834.” (Note by Montero y Vidal.) 

21 These funds were chiefly the obras pías which had been administered by the Jesuit order in Filipinas up to their expulsion from the islands; at that time, nearly half of these foundations were extinguished by the authorities, and such moneys as remained in them were covered into the royal treasury. Forty-five of the Jesuit obras pías were thus left, which were administered by the government in the following manner: The capital was divided (as had long been the custom of all the orders in Filipinas in administering obras pías) into three parts; one of these was invested in the commerce of Acapulco, another in that of the Coromandel Coast and China, and the other third remained on deposit as a reserve to make good any losses in the amounts invested. Much light is thrown on the management of these funds by the Jesuits, in the official report made (June 23, 1797), in pursuit of a command from the Spanish government, by Angel de la Fuente, the chief of the Bureau of Secular Revenues [Contaduría de Temporalidades] at Manila; the original MS. of this is in the possession of Edward K. Ayer, Chicago. Fuente examined the account-books which the Jesuits had kept of these funds, and found them full of confusion, discrepancies, and omissions; but after comparing and verifying them so far as he could, he made a list of them, with statement of their origin, amount, and application. He found that in seventeen of these funds there was no evidence that the money had been applied as directed by the donors, and only partial indications of this in fifteen others. He reported that many of these obras pías had been contributed for the advantage and benefit of the Jesuits themselves, and therefore, since that order had been suppressed, the funds might now justly be applied to any desirable pious purpose. To this end, he recommended that nineteen of the funds be placed in charge of the diocesan authorities, and twelve others used by the government for specified purposes, and that the rest be covered into the royal treasury. 

22 “In order to give aid to the widow of Torres, and pay the expenses of her voyage to España, a subscription was raised which produced 12,000 pesos; but we note that the promoter of this married the widow, and they returned to the Peninsula together.” (Note by Montero y Vidal.) 

23 The “pillar dollar” was so called from the pillars on the reverse of the coin, which represent the pillars of Hercules, or the Straits of Gibraltar; this device was characteristic of the Spanish-American coinage. This dollar was the peso duro (or “hard dollar”), of eight reals; and its half, quarter, eighth, sixteenth, and thirty-second parts were represented by smaller coins. The greater part of the supply of pillar dollars were made in Mexico; but this coinage ceased in 1822. In the Peninsula, the coins were the dollar—formerly of ten reals, but now of twenty reals vellón—the half, the peseta or pistareen (which is one-fifth of the dollar, or four reals vellón), and the half and the quarter pistareen. After the Peninsular revolution of 1821, pillar dollars were struck for a short time at Madrid, but these are easily distinguishable from the true pillar dollar. In 1810–16, silver coins were used in Brazil, which were only the Spanish dollar, softened by annealing, and then restamped; the pillars may be distinguished underneath this surface, by close inspection. See Eckfeldt and DuBois, Manual of Gold and Silver Coins (Philadelphia, 1842), pp. 33, 77, 119, 122, See also chapter on Spanish coinage, especially that called “vellón,” in Lea’s Inquisition in Spain (New York, 1906–07), i, pp. 560 et seq.; this latter, although debased, was the standard of value until 1871, when it was replaced by the decimal system. 

24 “According to a memorial published by Don Francisco Enríquez on leaving his office, there were at that time in the funds [of his department] a surplus of 1,000,000 pesos, and in the storehouses over 275,000 bales of tobacco, the value of which exceeded 4,000,000 hard dollars.” (Note by Montero y Vidal.) 

25 Hangers-on of the palace at Manila tried to throw on Galvey the blame for this failure; but Montero y Vidal cites Galvey’s diary, to show that he had to contend with overwhelming difficulties, inadequate supplies and lack of proper facilities, and the insalubrity of the country. He stated therein that he had made “forty-five expeditions into the hill-country, and had received therein four wounds, two of which were mortal.” He died in 1839. 

26 Royal decrees of 1835 and 1836 suppressed the Jesuit order throughout the Spanish empire; all the religious communities and colleges of men (excepting the colleges of missionaries for Asia, the clergy of the Escuelas Pías and the hospital convents of St. John of God), and the houses of the military orders; and all the beaterios whose inmates were not devoted to educational or hospital labors. 

27 “In Filipinas the peseta is worth only 32 cuartos.” (Vidal y Soler, Viajes por Jagor, p. 227; published in 1874.) 

28 Soon after his return to Spain he published a book (Cádiz, 1839) relating his experiences as governor of Filipinas. 

29 Camba’s wife died, three months after their arrival at Manila; and at her funeral certain military honors were paid her, as provided in the regulations of affairs in the Indias, and these were promptly approved by the home government. Camba’s enemies, however, accused him at Madrid of having had the same honors paid to his wife as were customary with royal persons; and, at the time, the artillery officials demanded from him pay for the powder used on that occasion. (Note by Montero y Vidal.) 

30 In conjunction with the Audiencia, he commissioned a magistrate, Francisco Otín y Duazo, to draw up new “Ordinances of good government,” in 1838. (Montero y Vidal, ii, p. 360.) 

31 Montero y Vidal says (iii, p. 21): “On March 21, 1840, the Economic Society of Friends of the Country made a grant of 500 pesos to Father Blanco for the expenses of printing and publishing the Flora which bears his name.” In 1845 a second edition appeared, corrected and enlarged by the author himself; and a third edition was issued (1877–80) at the cost of the Augustinian order. This last was in four volumes, a limited edition, with an atlas (in two volumes) containing 478 colored plates; it also included a previously unpublished MS. on Philippine botany, written late in the sixteenth century, and an appendix prepared by the editors of Blanco (Fathers Andrés Naves and Celestino Fernández-Villar) in which they endeavored to coördinate Blanco’s species with those of other authors and to enumerate all the species of Philippine plants then known. See an account of Blanco’s work and that of his later editors, with estimate of the scientific value of both, in Review of the Identifications of Species Described in Blanco’s “Flora” (Manila, 1905), by Elmer D. Merrill, botanist of the Bureau of Government Laboratories at Manila. 

32 In Retana’s Periodismo filipino (pp. 566, 567) Torres y Lanzas describes some copies of this periodical, dated October 5–November 9, 1839, and January 23–February 6, 1841; he cites a letter by Urréjola to show that Precios corrientes was published weekly, beginning July 6, 1839, by private enterprise. 

33 By a later royal decree, the fiscal was to settle any case of disagreement between the two censors, and any books seized by the authorities should be only sent back to the shipper, and not kept by them—the archbishop having demanded that confiscated books should be surrendered to him. (Note by Montero y Vidal.) 





The following remarks are drawn up by one but little accustomed to writing, and offered with much diffidence. In them the Spanish character will be found perhaps severely treated; but it is necessary to remark, that not only these observations are, from their very nature, general; but farther, that they have no reference to the genuine or European Spanish character—a character of which the writer has but little knowledge, and one as essentially different from that which falls under consideration in the following pages, as the society of all convict colonies is from that of the mother country.1 [74]




Of the numerous groupes of islands which constitute the maritime division of Asia, the Phillippines, in situation, riches, fertility, and salubrity, are equal or superior to any. Nature has here revelled in all that poets or painters have thought or dreamt of unbounded luxuriance of Asiatic scenery. The lofty chains of mountains—the rich and extensive slopes which form their bases—the ever-varying change of forest and savannah—of rivers and lakes—the yet blazing volcanoes in the midst of forests, coeval perhaps with their first eruption—all stamp her work with the mighty emblems of her creative and destroying powers. Java alone can compete with them in fertility; but in riches, extent, situation, and political importance, it is far inferior.

Their position, whether in a political or commercial point of view, is strikingly advantageous. With India and the Malay Archipelago on the west and south, the islands of the fertile Pacific and the rising empires of the new world on the east, the vast market of China at their doors, their insular position and numerous rivers affording a facility of communication and defence to every part of them, an active and industrious population, climates of almost all varieties, a soil so fertile in vegetable and mineral productions as almost to exceed credibility; the Phillippine [75]Islands alone, in the hands of an industrious and commercial nation, and with a free and enlightened government, would have become a mighty empire:—they are—a waste!

This archipelago presents, in common with all the islands which form the southern and eastern barrier of Asia, those striking features which mark a recent or an approaching convulsion of nature: they are separated by narrow, but deep, and frequently unfathomable channels; their steep and often tremendous capes and headlands, though clothed with verdure to the very brink, appear to rise almost perpendicularly from the ocean; they have but few reefs or shoals, and those of small extent; and in the interior of the islands, numerous volcanoes, in activity or very recently so, boiling springs and mineral waters of all descriptions, minerals of all kinds on the very surface of the earth, and frequent shocks of earthquakes, all point to this conclusion, and offer a rich and unexplored field to the geologist2 and mineralogist, as do their plants and animals to the botanist and zoologist;3 the few attempts that have hitherto been made to examine them, having from various causes failed, or only extended to a short distance round the capital.4 [76]

The climate of these islands is remarkably temperate and salubrious. The thermometer in Manila is sometimes as low as 70°, and rarely exceeds 90° in the house during the N. E. monsoon. In the interior [77]it is sometimes as low as 68° in the mornings, which are remarkably cool, so much so as to require at time$ woolen clothing. None of the mountains are within the limits of perpetual congelation; but I think some cannot be far from it, as I have seen something much resembling snow on the Pico de Mindoro, and there may be higher ones in the interior of Magindanao.6

Both natives and Spaniards live to a tolerable age, in spite of the indolent habits of the latter, and the debauches of both. The Spaniards are most commonly carried off by chronic dysentery, which is called by them “la enfermedád del pays” (the illness of the country): from its very frequent occurrence, at least 7 out of 10 of those who exceed the age of 40, fall victims to this disorder.7 Acute [78]liver complaints are very rare, as is also the chronic affection of that organ, unless as connected with the preceding disorder.

Fevers are not common amongst Europeans, in Manila. Amongst the natives, the intermittent is of common occurrence, particularly after the rains (in September and October), and in woody or marshy situations.8 This appears to be owing as much to the thinness and want of clothing, together with their habits of bathing indiscriminately at all hours, as to miasmata; and, as their fevers are generally neglected, they often superinduce other and more fatal disorders, as obstructions, &c. Tetanos in cases of wounds is of common occurrence, and generally fatal.

Their population, by a census taken in 1817–18, amounted to 2,236,000 souls, and is increasing rapidly. In one province, that of Pampanga, from 1817 to 1818, there was an increase of 6,737 souls, the whole population being in 1817, 22,500; but I suspect some inaccuracy in this. The total increase from 1797 to 1817, 25 [sic] years, is by this statement 835,500, or 3,360 per annum! In this census are included only [79]those subject to Spanish laws. About three quarters of a million more may be added for the various independent tribes,9 which may be said to possess the whole of the interior of the islands, on some of which, as the large one of Mindanao (called by the natives Magindanao) there are only a few contemptible [Spanish] posts, the interior and a great part of the coast being still subject to the Malay sultans, originally of Arab race.

The population of the Marianas and Calamianes Islands, with that of Palawan, which are all included in “The Kingdom of the Phillippines,” are [80]comprised in this number, but the whole of these does not exceed 19,000.

Of this number about 600 only are European Spaniards, with some few foreigners: the remainder are divided into various classes, of which the principal are, 1st, The Negroes, or aborigines; 2d, the Malays (or Indians, as they are called by the Spaniards); and the Mestizos and Creoles, who are about as 1 to 5 of the Indian population.

The Negroes [i.e., Negritos]10 are in all probability the original inhabitants of these islands, as they appear at some remote epoch to have been of almost all the eastern archipelago. The tide of Malay emigration, from whatever cause and part it proceeded, has on some islands entirely destroyed them. Others, as New Guinea, it has not yet reached, a circumstance which seems to point to the west as the original cradle of the Malay race. In the Phillippines, it has driven them from the coast to the mountains, which by augmenting the difficulty of procuring subsistence, may have much diminished their numbers. Still, however, they form a distinct, and perhaps a more numerous class of men than is generally suspected. They have in the present day undisturbed possession of nearly ⅔ds of the island of Luzon, and of others a still larger proportion.

These people are small in stature, some of them almost dwarfish, woolly-headed, and thick-lipped, like the negroes of Africa, to whom indeed they bear [81]a striking resemblance, though the different tribes vary much in their stature and general appearance. They subsist entirely on the chase, or on fruits, herbs, roots, or fish when they can approach the coast. They are nearly, and often quite naked, and live in huts formed of the boughs of trees, grass &c., or in the trees themselves, when on an excursion or migration. Their mode of life is wandering and unsettled, seldom remaining long enough in one place to form a village. They sometimes sow a little maize or rice, and wait its ripening, but not longer. These are the habits of the tribes which border on the Spanish settlements. Farther within the mountains they are more settled, and even form villages of considerable size, in the deep vallies by which the chains of mountains are intersected. The entrances to these they fortify with plantations of the thorny bamboo, pickets of the same, set strongly in the earth and sharpened by fire, ditches and pit-falls; in short all the means of defence in their power are employed to render these places inaccessible. Here they cultivate corn, rice, and tobacco; the last they sell to Indians, who smuggle it into the towns. This being a contraband article, as it is monopolized by government, the defences are used against the Spanish revenue officers and troops, who on this account never fail to destroy their establishments when they can do so, though many are impregnable to any force they can bring against them, from the nature of the passes, and from the activity of the negroes, who use their bows with wonderful expertness. There are indeed instances of their repulsing bodies of one or two hundred native troops, but affairs of this magnitude are very rare.

To this predatory kind of warfare, as well as to [82]the defective qualities, and often very reprehensible conduct of the missionaries, generally Indian priests (Clerigos), are perhaps to be in some measure attributed their unsettled habits. Those nearest the Spanish settlements carry on a little commerce, receiving wrought iron, cloth, and tobacco, but oftener dollars, in exchange for gold-dust, &c., or for wax, honey, and other products of their mountains. The circumstance of their receiving dollars, which they rarely use in their purchases, is a curious one; but it is a fact, and very large quantities of money are supposed to be thus buried; from what motive, except a superstitious one, cannot be imagined.11

Of their manners or customs little or nothing is known. Like all savage nations, they are abundantly tinctured with superstitions, fickle, and hasty. One of their customs best known is, that upon the death of a chief, they plant themselves in ambush on some frequented track, and with their arrows assassinate the first unfortunate traveller who passes, and not unfrequently two or three; the bodies are carried off as sacrifices to the manes of the deceased.12 The communications between the Spanish settlements are often interrupted by this circumstance, as no Indian will venture out when the negroes are known to be “de luto” (in mourning): they are also said to have a “throwing of spears,” similar to those of New Holland, at the death of any eminent person. In fact, upon this, as upon all other points unconnected with masses and sermons, there exists a degree of ignorance which is almost incredible. The early missionaries, [83]in their rage for nominal conversion, appear to have neglected entirely the history or origin of their neophytes; and, as in America, where the monuments of ages were crumbled to the dust to plant the cross, all that related to the history of their converts was considered as unprofitable, if not as impious, the devil13 being compendiously supposed to preside over their political as well as religious institutions in all cases. In this belief, and in its consequent effects, the modern missionaries, who are mostly Indian priests, are worthy successors of their Spanish predecessors.

The government have many missions established for the purpose of converting them, but with little success. Like most savages, their mode of life has to them charms superior to civilization, or rather to Christianity (for here the terms are not synonimous); and they rarely remain, should they even consent to be baptized, but on the first caprice, or exaction of tribute, which immediately takes place, and sometimes even precedes this ceremony, return again to their mountains.

Exposed to all inclemencies of the weather, and with an unwholesome and precarious diet, they perhaps rarely attain more than forty years of age. Their numbers are supposed rather to diminish than increase; and in a few years this race of men, with their language, will probably be extinct. It is indeed a curious subject of enquiry, whether the language of those of the eastern islands has any, and what resemblance to those of Africa, or the southern parts of New Holland and Van Dieman’s Land?14 [84]

They are not represented as very mischievous; but if strangers venture too far into their woods, they consider it an aggression, and repel it accordingly [85]with their arrows. Those who frequent the Spanish settlements are rather of a mild character; and there are instances of Spanish vessels being wrecked on the [86]coast, whose people, particularly the Europeans, have been treated by them in the kindest manner, and carefully conducted to the nearest settlement. [87]

The character of the different tribes appears, however, to vary in this particular: some are described as treacherous and cruel, and those which inhabit the [88]north western coasts of the Bay of Manila are accused of having frequently attacked the boats of ships, when these were not sufficiently guarded in their intercourse with them. The natives of the town in the Bay of Mariveles, at the entrance of that of Manila, assured the writer of these pages, that it would be madness to attempt accompanying them into the woods, even in disguise; and in this they persisted, though money was offered them to allow him to proceed with them.

The Indians are the descendants of the various Malay tribes which appear to have emigrated to this country at different times, and from different parts of Borneo and Celebes. Their languages, though all derived from one stock (the Malay), has a number of dialects differing very materially; so much so, that those from different provinces frequently do not understand each other.

They differ too in their character, and slightly in their manners and customs. The most numerous class of them are the Bisayas,18 (a Spanish name, from their [89]anciently painting their bodies, and using defensive armour). These inhabit the largest part of the southern islands. Luzon contains several tribes, of which the most remarkable are the Ylocos, Cagayanes, Zambales, Pangasinanes, Pampangos, and Tagalos. These still retain their national distinctions and characters to such a degree, that they often occasion quarrels amongst each other. Of their general character as a nation we are now to speak.

The Indian of the Phillippine Islands has been strangely misrepresented. He is not the being that oppression, bigotry, and indolence, have for 300 years endeavoured to make him, or he is so only when he has no other resource. Necessity, and the force of example have made those of Manila, what the whole are generally characterized as—traitors, idlers, and thieves.

How, under such a system as will be afterwards described, should they be otherwise? Say rather, that all considered, it is surprising to find them what they are; for they are in general (I speak of the Indian of the provinces), mild, industrious, as far as they dare to be so, hospitable, kind, and ingenuous. The Pampango is brave,19 faithful, and active; the fidelity of the Cagayan is proverbial; the Yloco and the Pangasinanon are most industrious; the Bisayan is brave and enterprising almost to fool-hardiness:—they are all a spirited, a proudly-spirited race of men; and such materials, in other hands, would form the foundation of all that is great and excellent in human nature.

But for 300 years they have been ground to the earth with oppression. They have been crushed by [90]tyranny; their spirit has been tortured by abuse and contempt, and brutalized by ignorance; in a word, there is no injustice that has not been inflicted on them, short of depriving them of their liberty; and in a work published at Madrid in 1819 (Estado de las Yslas Filipinas, par [sic; for por] Don Tomas Comyn), whose author was a factor of the Phillippine company, a whole chapter (the 4th) is devoted to the mild and humane project “of establishing Spanish agriculturists throughout the islands,” who are, “to require a certain number of Indians from the governors of towns and provinces, who are to be driven to the plantations, where they are to be obliged to work a certain time, the price of their labour being fixed, and then to be relieved by a fresh drove!”20

Such a system, incredible as it may appear, has been proposed to a Spanish cortes; and still more wonderful, plans like these excited no reprobation in Manila. Such were Spanish ideas of governing Indians! Justice would almost tempt us to wish that this scheme had been carried into execution, and that the Indian had risen and dashed his chains on the heads of the authors of such an infernal project. And yet the Indian is marked out as little better than a brute; so many of them are, but to the system of government, and not to the Indian, is the fault to be ascribed.

It is not here meant to accuse the Spanish laws; many of them are excellent, and would appear to [91]have been dictated by the very spirit of philanthropy. But these are rarely enforced, or if they are, delay vitiates their effect. That this colony, the most favoured perhaps under heaven by nature, should have remained till the present day almost a forest, is a circumstance which has generally excited surprise in those who are acquainted with it, and has as generally been accounted for by attributing it to the laziness of the Spaniards and Indians. This is but a superficial view of the subject; one of those general remarks which being relatively a little flattering to ourselves, pass current as facts, and then “we wonder how any one can doubt of what is so generally received.”—The cause lies deeper, man is not naturally indolent. When he has supplied his necessities, he seeks for superfluities—if he can enjoy them in security and peace;—if not—if the iron gripe of despotism (no matter in what shape, or through what form it is felt), is ready to snatch his earnings from him, without affording him any equivalent—then indeed he becomes indolent, that is, he merely provides for the wants of to-day. This apathy is perpetuated through numerous generations till it becomes national habit, and then we falsely call it nature. It cannot be too often repeated, that from the poles to the equator, man is the creature of his civil institutions, and is active in proportion to the freedom he enjoys. Who that has perused the History of Java by Sir S. Raffles,21 and seen the effects of government planned [92]by the talents of Minto in the spirit of the British constitution in that country, will now accuse the Javanese of unwillingness to work, if the fruits of his labour are secured to him? And yet we remember when a Javanese was another name for every thing that is detestable. It is ever thus—we blame the race, because that flatters our pride—we should first look to their institutions. I return to the Phillippines.

The cause, then, of their little progress is “because there is no security for property;” or in other words, the smallness of the salaries of the officers of justice, as well as of other members of government, and the profligacy inseparable from all despotic governments, have laid the inhabitants under that curse of all societies, venal courts of justice. Does an unfortunate Indian scrape together a few dollars to buy a buffalo, in which consists their whole riches? Woe to him if it is known; and if his house is in a lonely situation—he is infallibly robbed. Does he complain, and is the robber caught? In three months he is let loose again (perhaps with some trifling punishment), to take vengeance on his accuser, and renew his depredations.

Hundreds of Indian families are yearly ruined in this manner. Deprived of their cattle, on which they [93]depend for subsistence, they grow desperate and careless of future exertion, which can but lead to the same results, and thus either drag on a miserable existence from day to day, or join with the robbers23 to pursue the same mode of life, and to exonerate themselves from paying tributes and taxes, in return for which no protection is granted. In many provinces this has been carried to such an extent, that whole districts are rendered impassable by the robbers,24 who even lay villages under contribution!

This is the state of the inland towns. On the coasts, and while a flotilla of gun-boats is maintained at an expense of upwards of half a million of dollars annually, there is no part safe from the attacks of the Malay pirates from Borneo, Sooloo, and Mindanao. These make regular cruises to procure slaves, and have even not unfrequently carried them off, not only from the bay of Manila,25 but even from within gun-shot of its ramparts! The very soldiers and sailors sent for their protection plunder them. An Indian in whose neighbourhood troops are posted, [94]or who sees the gun-boats approaching, can no longer consider his property safe; and in the very vicinity of Manila, soldiers ramble about with their loaded muskets, and pilfer all they lay hands upon at midday!26

Does the Indian, in spite of all this, escape, and by patient industry make a little way in the world? he is vexed with offices; he is chosen Alguazil, Lieutenant, and Captain of his town; to these offices no pay is attached, they always occasion expenses and create him enemies; he is pinched or cheated by the Mestizos, a forestalling, avaricious, and tyrannical race. Does he suffer in silence? it is a signal for new oppressions: does he complain? a law suit. The Mestizos are all connected, they are rich, and the Indian is poor.

The imperfect mode of trial, both in civil and criminal cases (by written declarations and the decisions of judges alone), lays them open to a thousand frauds; for if the magistrate be supposed incorruptible, his notaries or writers (escribanos and escribientes) are not so; and from their knavery, declarations are often falsified, or one paper is exchanged for another whilst in the act of or before signing them.

To such a degree does this exist, that few Indians, even of those who can read Spanish tolerably, will sign a declaration made before a magistrate without threats, or without having some one on whom they [95]can depend, to assure them they may safely do so. Nor is this to be wondered at, when it is known that declarations on which the life or fortune of an individual may depend are left, often for days, in the power of writers or notaries, any of whom may be bought for a doubloon; and some of them are even the menial servants of the magistrate! This applies to Luzon. In the other islands, this miserable system is yet worse: they have seldom but one communication a year with the capital, to which all causes of any magnitude are sent for decision or confirmation; and, as the papers are often (purposely) drawn up with some informality, the cause, after suffering all the first ordeal of chicane and knavery, experiences a year’s delay before it is even allowed a chance of being exposed to that which awaits it at Manila. Or should the cause be at length carried to the Audiencia, or Supreme Court, and there, as is sometimes the case, be judged impartially, the delay of the decision renders it useless—the sentence is evaded—or treated with contempt! This may appear almost incredible, but known to any person who has resided in Manila.

While the civil power is thus shamefully corrupt or negligent of its duties, the church has not forgotten that she too has claims on the Indian. She has marked out, exclusive of Sundays, above 40 days in the year on which no labour can be performed throughout the islands. Exclusive of these are the numerous local feasts in honor of the patron saints of towns and churches.27 The influence of these extends [96]often through a groupe of many islands, always to many leagues round their different sanctuaries; and often lasting three or four days, sometimes a week, according to his or her reputation for sanctity; so that including Sundays, the average cannot be less than 110 or 120 days lost to the community in a year. This alone is a heavy tax on the agricultural classes, by whom it is most severely felt; but its consequences are more so, from the habits of idleness and dissipation which it engenders and perpetuates. These feasts are invariably, after the procession is over, scenes of gambling, drinking, and debauchery of every description.

“And mony jobs that day begun,

Will end in houghmagandie.”29

Thus they unsettle and disturb the course of their labours [97]by calling off their attention from their domestic cares; and by continually offering occasions of dissipation destroy what little spirit of economy or foresight may exist amongst so rude and ignorant a people. Nor is this all; they are subject to numerous other vexations and impositions under the title of church-services; such are, in some towns, five or six men attendant daily in rotation to bring the sick to the church to confess, or to carry the “Padre” with the host to their houses, and many others; all of which, though in themselves trifles, are more harassing, from their unsettling tendency, than pecuniary imposts. An encouragement to celibacy and its consequent evils is also to be found in the (to them) heavy expenses attendant on all the domestic offices of religion, as matrimony, baptism, &c., as well as in the increase of the poll-tax on married persons, for the whole of which the husband is responsible. The ecclesiastical expenses of a marriage between the poorer classes are about five dollars: the others, as christenings, buryings, &c., in proportion. These appear trifles; but if to these are added the confessions, bulas, [i.e., of the Crusade] and other exactions, it will be seen that these constitute no trifling part of the oppressive and ill managed system which has so much contributed to debase their real character.

I say nothing here of the natural effect of the Roman Catholic religion on an ignorant people, who imagine, that verbal confession and pecuniary atonements (rarely to the injured person) are a salvo for crimes of all magnitudes: that such is the case, is notorious to every one who has visited Catholic countries. [98]

Let us for a moment retrace this picture. To whom after this is it attributable that the Indian is often a vicious and degraded being, particularly in the neighborhood of Manila?

If he sees all around him thieving and enjoying their plunder with impunity, what wonder is it that he should thieve also? If his tribunals of all descriptions afford him no redress, or place that redress beyond his reach, what resource has he but private revenge?30 If he cannot enjoy the fruits of his labour in peace, why should he work? If he is ignorant, why has he not been instructed? There exist scarcely any schools to teach him his duties: the few that do exist teach him Latin! prayers! theology! jurisprudence! and some little reading and writing;31 but he [99]is only taught to read the lives of the saints, and the legends of the church, whose gloomy, fanatical doctrines and sanguinary histories have not a little contributed to make him at times revengeful and intolerant. Does he prevaricate and flatter? It is because [100]he dare not speak the truth, and because a long system of oppression has broken his spirit.

Does he endeavour to advance himself a few steps in civilization? his attempts are treated with ridicule and contempt;32 hence he becomes apathetic, careless of advancement, and often insensible to reproach. The best epithets he hears from Spaniards (often as ignorant as himself) are “Indio!” The God of nature made him so. “Bruto!” He has been and is brutalized by his masters. “Barbaro!” He is often so by force, example, or even by precept. “Ignorante!” He has no means of learning; the will is not wanting. In a word, the spirit of the followers of Cortes and Pizarro, appears to have left its last vestiges here, and perhaps the Indian has been saved from its persecutions only by the weakness of the Spaniard.

Such are some of the causes which have marked the character of the Indian, which is not naturally bad, with some of its prominent blemishes. I am far from holding up the Indian of the Phillippines as a faultless being; he is not so; the Indian of Manila34 [101]has all the vices attributed to him; but I assert, that the Phillippine islander owes the greater part of his vices to example, to oppression, and above all to misgovernment; and that his character has traits, which under a different system, would have produced a widely different result.

To sum up his character:—He is brave, tolerably faithful, extremely sensible to kind treatment, and feelingly alive to injustice or contempt; proud of ancestry, which some of them carry to a remote epoch; fond of dress and show, hunting, riding, and other field exercises; but prone to gambling and dissipation. He is active, industrious, and remarkably ingenious. He possesses an acute ear, and a good taste for music and painting, but little inclination for abstruse studies. He has from nature excellent talents, but these are useless for want of instruction. The little he has received, has rendered him fanatical in religious opinions; and long contempt and hopeless misery has mingled with his character a degree of apathy, which nothing but an entire change of system and long perseverance will efface from it.36 [102]

The Mestizos are the next class of men who inhabit these islands: under this name are not only included the descendants of Spaniards by Indian women and their progeny, but also those of the Chinese, who are in general whiter than either parent, and carefully distinguish themselves from the Indians. [103]The Mestizos are, as the name denotes, a mixed class, and, with the creoles of the country, like those of all colonies, when uncorrected by an European education, inherit the vices of both progenitors, with but few of the virtues of either. Their character has but few marked traits; the principal ones are [104]their vanity, industry, and trading ingenuity: as to the rest, money is their god; to obtain it they take all shapes, promise and betray, submit to everything, trample and are trampled on; all is alike to them, if they get money; and this, when obtained, they dissipate in lawsuits, firing cannon, fireworks, illuminations, [105]processions on feast days and rejoicings, in gifts to the churches, or in gambling. This anomaly of actions is the business of their lives. Too proud to consider themselves as Indians, and not sufficiently pure in blood to be acknowledged as Spaniards, they affect the manners of the last, with the dress of the first, and despising, are despised by both.37 They however, cautiously mark on all occasions the lines which separate them from the Indians, and have their own processions, ceremonies, inferior officers of justice, &c., &c. The Indian repays them with a keen contempt, not unmixed with hatred. And these feuds, [106]while they contribute to the safety of a government too imbecile and corrupt to unite the good wishes of all classes, have not unfrequently given rise to affrays which have polluted even the churches and their altars with blood.

Such are the three great classes of men which may be considered as natives of the Phillippine Islands. The Creole38 Spaniards, or those whose blood is but little mingled with the Indian ancestry, pass as Spaniards. Many of them are respectable merchants and men of large property; while others, from causes which will be seen hereafter, are sunk in all the vices of the Indian and Mestizo.

The government of the Phillippine Islands is composed of a governor, who has the title of Captain General, with very extensive powers; a Teniente Rey, or Lieutenant Governor; the Audiencia or Supreme Court, who are also the Council. This tribunal is composed of three judges, the chief of whom has the title of Regent, and two Fiscals or Attorney Generals, the one on the part of the king, the other on that of the natives, and this last has the specious title of “Defensor de los Indios.” The financial affairs are under the direction of an Intendant, who may be called a financial governor. He has the entire control and administration of all matters relative to the revenue, the civil and military auditors and accountants being under him. Commercial affairs [107]are decided by the Consulado, or chamber of commerce, composed of all the principal, and, in Manila, some of the inferior merchants. From this is an appeal to a tribunal “de Alzada” [i.e., of appeal] composed of one judge and two merchants, and from this to the Audiencia, without whose approbation no sentence is valid.

The civic administration is confided to the Ayuntamiento (Courts of Aldermen or Municipality). This body, composed of the two Alcaldes, twelve Regidors (or Aldermen) and a Syndic, enjoy very extensive privileges, approaching those of Houses of Assembly; their powers, however, appear more confined to remonstrances and protests, representations against what they conceive arbitrary or erroneous in government, or recommendations of measures suggested either by themselves or others. They have, in general, well answered the object of their institution as a barrier against the encroachments of government, and as a permanent body for reference in cases where local knowledge was necessary, which last deficiency they well supply.

The civil power and police are lodged in the hands of a Corregidor and two Alcaldes: the decision of these is final in cases of civil suits, where the value in question is small, 100 dollars being about the maximum.39 Their criminal jurisdiction extends only to slight fines and corporal punishments, and imprisonment preparatory to trial. The police is confided to the care of the Corregidor, who has more extensive powers, and also the inspection and control of the prisons.

To him are also subject the Indian Captains and [108]Officers of towns, who are annually elected by the natives. These settle small differences, answer for disturbances in their villages, execute police orders, impose small contributions of money or labour for local objects, such as repairs of roads, &c. &c. They also have the power of inflicting slight punishments on the refractory. To them is also confided the collection of the capitation or poll-tax, which is done by dividing the population of the town or village into tens, each of which has a Cabeça (or head), who is exempt from tribute himself, but answerable for the amount of the ten under him. This tax is then paid to the Alcalde or Corregidor, and from him to the treasury. The Mestizos and Chinese have also their captains and heads, who are equally answerable for the poll-tax.

The different districts and islands, which are called provinces, and are 29 in number, are governed by Alcaldes. The more troublesome ones, or those requiring a military form of government, by military officers, who are also Corregidors. Samboangan on the south west coast of Mindanao, and the Marianas, have governors named from Manila, and these are continued from three to five years in office.

These Alcaldeships are a fertile source of abuses and oppression: their pay is mean to the last degree, not exceeding 350 dollars per annum, and a trifling per centage on the poll-tax. They are in general held by Spaniards of the lower classes, who finding no possible resource in Manila, solicit an Alcadeship. This is easily obtained, on giving the securities [109]required by government for admission to these offices, which consist in two sureties40 to an amount proportionable to the value of the taxes of the province, which all pass through the Alcalde’s hands.

Of the nature and amount of these abuses an idea will be better formed from the following abridged quotations, which are translated from the work of Comyn before quoted (p. 16).41

“It is indeed common enough to see the barber or lacquey of a governor, or a common sailor, transformed at once into the Alcalde in chief of a populous province, without any other guide or council than his own boisterous passions.

“Without examining the inconvenience which may arise from their ignorance, it is yet more lamentable to observe the consequences of their rapacious avarice, which government tacitly allows them to indulge, under the specious title of permissions to trade (indultos).

——“and these are such that it may be asserted, that the evil which the Indian feels most severely is derived from the very source which was originally intended for his assistance and protection, that is, from the Alcaldes of the provinces, who, generally speaking, are the determined enemies and the real oppressors of their industry. [110]

“It is a well known fact, that far from promoting the felicity of the provinces to which he is appointed, the Alcalde is exclusively occupied with advancing his private fortune, without being very scrupulous as to the means he employs to do so: hardly is he in office than he declares himself the principal consumer, buyer, and exporter of every production of the province. In all his enterprises he requires the forced assistance of his subjects, and if he condescends to pay them, it is at least only at the price paid for the royal works. These miserable beings carry their produce and manufactures to him, who directly or indirectly has fixed an arbitrary price for them. To offer that price is to prohibit any other from being offered—to insinuate is to command—the Indian dares not hesitate—he must please the Alcalde, or submit to his persecution: and thus, free from all rivalry in his trade, being the only Spaniard in the province, the Alcalde gives the law without fear or even risk, that a denunciation of his tyranny should reach the seat of government.

“To enable us to form a more correct idea of these iniquitous proceedings, let us lift a little of the veil with which they are covered, and examine a little their method of collecting the ‘tributo’ (poll-tax).

“The government, desirous of conciliating the interests of the natives with that of the revenue, has in many instances commuted the payment of the poll-tax into a contribution in produce or manufactures: a year of scarcity arrives, and this contribution, being then of much higher value than the amount of the tax, and consequently the payment in produce a loss, and even occasioning a serious want in their families, they implore the Alcalde to make a representation [111]to government that they may be allowed to pay the tribute for that year in money. This is exactly one of those opportunities, when, founding his profits on the misery of his people, the Alcalde can in the most unjust manner abuse the power confided to him. He pays no attention to their representations. He is the zealous collector of the royal revenues;—he issues proclamations and edicts, and these are followed by his armed satellites, who seize on the harvests, exacting inexorably the tribute, until nothing more is to be obtained. Having thus made himself master of the miserable subsistence of his subjects, he changes his tone on a sudden—he is the humble suppliant to government in behalf of the unfortunate Indians, whose wants he describes in the most pathetic terms, urging the impossibility of their paying the tribute in produce—no difficulty is experienced in procuring permission for it to be paid in money—to save appearance, a small portion of it is collected in cash, and the whole amount paid by him into the treasury, while he resells at an enormous profit, the whole of the produce (generally rice) which has been before collected!” Comyn, p. 134 to 138.

This extract, though long, is introduced as an evidence from a Spaniard (not of the lower order, or a disappointed adventurer, but a man of high respectability), of the shameless abuses which are daily practiced in this unfortunate country, and of which the Indian is invariably the victim: and it is far from being an overcharged one. Hundreds of other instances might be cited,42 but this one will perhaps [112]suffice to exonerate the writer of these remarks from suspicion of exaggeration, in pointing out some of the most prominent of them.

While treating of the government of the Phillippines, we must not forget the ministers of their religion, and the share which they have in preserving these islands as dominions to the crown of Spain. This influence dates from the earliest epoch of their discovery. The followers of Cortes and Pizarro, with their successors, were employed in enriching themselves in the new world; and the spirit of conquest and discovery having found wherewith to satiate the brutal avarice by which it was directed, abandoned these islands to the pious efforts of the missionaries by whom, rather than by force of arms, they were in a great measure subdued; and even in the present day, they still preserve so great an influence, that the Phillippines may be almost said to exist under a theocracy approaching to that of the Jesuits in Paraguay.

The ecclesiastical administration is composed of an Archbishop (of Manila), who has three suffragans, Ylocos, Camarines, and Zebu; the first two on Luzon, the last on the island of the same name. The revenue of the Archbishop is 4000, and that of the bishops 3000 dollars annually. The regular Spanish clergy of all orders are about 250, the major part of which are distributed in various convents in [113]the different islands, though their principal seats are in that of Luzon; and many of them, from age or infirmity, are confined to their convents in Manila.

The degree of respect in which “the Padre” is held by the Indian, is truly astonishing. It approaches to adoration, and must be seen to be credited. In the most distant provinces, with no other safeguard than the respect with which he has inspired the Indians, he exercises the most unlimited authority, and administers the whole of the civil and ecclesiastical government, not only of a parish, but often of a whole province. His word is law—his advice is taken on all subjects. No order from the Alcalde, or even the government43 is executed without his counsel and approbation, rendered too in many cases the more indispensable from his being the only person who understands Spanish in the village.44 To their high honour be it spoken, the conduct of these reverend fathers in general fully justifies [114]and entitles them to this confidence. The “Padre” is the only bar to the oppressions of the Alcalde: he protects, advises, comforts, remonstrates, and pleads for his flock; and not unfrequently has he been seen, though bending beneath the weight of years and infirmity, to leave his province, and undertake a long and often perilous voyage to Manila, to stand forward as the advocate of his Indians; and these gratefully repay this kind regard for their happiness by every means in their power.

Their hospitality is equally praiseworthy. The stranger who is travelling through the country, no matter what be his nation or his religion,45 finds at every town the gates of the convent open to him, and nothing is spared that can contribute to his comfort and entertainment. They too are the architects and mechanists: many of them are the physicians and schoolmasters of the country, and the little that has been done towards the amelioration of the condition of the Indian, has generally been done by the Spanish clergy.

It is painful, however, to remark, that much that [115]might have been done, has been left undone. The exclusive spirit of the Roman church, which confines its knowledge to its priests, is but too visible even here: they appear to be more anxious to make Christians, than citizens, and by neglecting this last part of their duty, have but very indifferently fulfilled the first,—the too common error of proselytists of all denominations, which has probably its source in that vanity of human nature, which is as insatiable beneath the cowl as under any garb it has yet assumed.

Some of them too have furnished a striking but melancholy proof of the eloquent moral,

“It is not good for man to be alone.”

Let us draw a veil over these infirmities. He who has lived amidst the busy hum of crowds, amidst the wild whirl of human passions and interests, can have but little conception of the state of that mind, which perhaps feeling alive to the blessings of social intercourse, is cut off for years from civilized men; and thus buried mentally, is constrained to seek all its resources within itself.46 That heart is one of powerful fibre which does not sometimes show itself to be human ….

There are instances indeed of some of them forgetting in a great measure their language! and of others who have become almost idiots while yet in the vigour of life!47 [116]

The next and lowest order of ecclesiastics are the Indian clergy (clerigos); they are in number from 800 to 1000, and though from the want of Spaniards, the administration of many large districts and towns is confided to them, they are as a body far from being worthy of such an important charge. The majority of them are ignorant to the last degree, proud, debauched, and indolent: in a word, they unite the vices of the priesthood to those of the Indian, and form a class of men who may almost be said to be distinguished by their vices only.

This arises from various causes, of which the principal appears to be that of their being entirely excluded from the higher ecclesiastical situations. This alone, by depriving them of the most powerful stimulus to correct conduct, together with the very confined education they receive, and the impassable line drawn between them and the Spanish clergy, whom they are never allowed to approach, and who treat them with much contempt, are sufficient to account, in a great measure, for their apparent demerit. The fact, however, is such, whatever be its cause; and seldom a week passes, or at most a month, but [117]some of them are brought before the ecclesiastical tribunals, under accusations but little creditable to their cloth.

Their ordinary resort at Manila is the cockpit or the gaming table, where they shew an avidity and keenness which are disgraceful and shameless to the last degree. Yet to the guidance of beings like these is the unfortunate Indian in a great measure abandoned, even in his last moments: for from the very great proportion of these to the Spanish priests, and from the recluse lives of the latter, nearly nine-tenths of all the clerical duties are performed by the Indian clerigos, such as I have described them. The few who do form an exception, are men whose conduct is highly creditable to themselves, and more striking from its unfrequent occurrence.

A keen and deadly jealousy subsists between these and the Spanish ecclesiastics, or rather a hatred on the one side, and a contempt on the other. The Indian clergy accuse these last of a neglect of their ecclesiastical duties, of vast accumulations of property in lands, &c., which, say they, “belong to us the Indians.” The Spaniards in return treat them with silent contempt, continuing to enjoy the best benefices, and living at their ease in the convents. From what has been said, it will be easily seen, “that much may be said on both sides;” but these recriminations have the bad effect of debasing both parties in the eyes of the natives, and are the germs of a discord which may one day involve these countries in all the horrors of religious dissentions.48 [118]

Such are the civil and ecclesiastical government of the Phillippines. We turn now to the Revenue and Expenditure, Military establishments, &c.

Until very lately these rich islands have been a constant burden to the crown of Spain, money having been annually sent from Mexico to supply their expenses. The establishment of the monopoly of tobacco has principally contributed to supply this deficiency. It was established by an active and intelligent governor (Vasco) about 1745 [sc., 1785] and still continues to be the principal revenue of the country; and large sums have been from time to time sent home to Spain, as a balance against those received from Mexico. The sales of this article amount more or less to a million of dollars per annum. The extensive establishment which is kept up to prevent smuggling, and the expenses of purchase and manufacture, reduce its net produce to 500,000 dollars per annum. The plant is cultivated in the districts of Gapan in Pampanga, in a part of the province of Cagayan, and in the island Marinduque to the south of Luzon. It is delivered in by the cultivators at fixed prices, and sent to Manila, where it is manufactured in a large range of buildings dedicated to that purpose, and retailed to the public at about 18 to 19½ dollars per arroba of 25 lbs. (Spanish), the prices varying a little according to the harvests.

The administration, inspection, and manufacture [119]of this article, employ several thousand persons of both sexes (the manufacturing process being almost wholly carried on by women). This is not only the most productive, but the best conducted branch of the revenue; while it is at the same time the least vexatious in its operations, though not exempt from those objections which are common to all government monopolies.

Another of these monopolies is that of Coco wine, as it is called (vino de Coco y nipa). This is a weak spirit produced from the juice of the Toddy tree (Borassus gomutus),49 and from the nipa (Cocos nypa): of this, large quantities are used by the natives. The expense of collection is about 80,000 dollars, the net revenue to government varying from 2 to 300,000.

The poll-tax (tributo) is the other great branch of the revenue; the manner of collecting it is described in p. 29. Its amount to each individual is, with some exceptions and variations in different provinces, 14 rials, or 1¾ dollars for every married Indian, from the age of 24 to 60. The Mestizos pay 24 rials or 3 dollars, and the Chinese 6 dollars each: this last branch is generally farmed. The amount of Indian and Mestizo tribute may be stated in round numbers at 800,000 dollars: the expense of collecting it diminishes it to about 640,000. The exemptions [120]from it are disbanded soldiers, who pay less than others, men above 60 years of age, and the cultivators of tobacco, or makers of wine for the royal monopolies.

The collection of this tax is always attended with much trouble, and it is detested by the Indians to the last degree. The exaction of it from the newly converted tribes,50 and the extensive frauds which, as already detailed, are practised by means of it, render it the most oppressive of all impositions. The natives consider it (perhaps with some justice), as giving money to no purpose; and infallibly evade it by every means in their power.

The customs produce from 1 to 300,000 dollars per annum. The remaining part of the revenue is derived from various minor sources: such are the cockpits, which are farmed, and produce a net revenue of 25 to 40,000 dollars;—the Chinese poll-tax, 30,000 dollars;—“Bulas,”51 (the sale of which is [121]farmed, and produces from 10 to 12,000 dollars);—cards, powder (a monopoly), stamps, and other articles of minor importance; amongst which was formerly the monopoly of betel nut, which is now abolished.

The expenses of administration are as follows. The civil and ecclesiastical officers of government, 250,000 dollars. The military, including all classes, about 600,000; and the marine, about 550,000.

The excess of revenue over the expenditure is stated by Comyn to have been in 1809 about 450,000 dollars, but in this is included 250,000 received from Mexico.

In 1817, by an account published by order of the Ayuntamiento of Manila, the amount of the revenue was—


Poll Tax 638,976
Rentas (monopolies, farms, &c.) 810,784
Total 1,449,76052

of which a surplus would remain when all the expenses were liquidated. In preceding years, some surplus has been remitted to Spain.

The military establishment consists of three regiments of infantry, one of dragoons, a squadron of hussars, and a battalion of artillery, in all about 4500 regulars. The militia are numerous, but only one [122]regiment is under arms: the total of men may be estimated at 5000, but on an emergency, large bodies of irregulars can be called into activity. In 1804, the governor, Don J. M. de Anguilar, [i.e., Aguilar] is said to have had upwards of 20,000 men under arms, being in expectation of an attack from the English.

These troops (which are all natives) are in general badly disciplined and officered, mostly by country-born officers, without the advantage of an European education, ignorant of their military duties to the last degree, many of them (more especially in the Mestizo regiments) connected with the soldiers by relationship, or at least by the tie of mutual indulgence, the soldier performing every menial office for the officer, who in return winks at the excesses of the soldier. This is carried to such an extent, that, not to mention such trifles as a garden wall or gate, a bathing house, or a stable, or at times a little smuggling; there are instances on record, where the commanding officer of a regiment has built himself a country house! the whole of the masonry and carpentry being performed by soldiers of his regiment! Another is of a captain collecting his debts by means of a piquet of infantry; taking possession of his debtor’s house until payment was made!

It will be easily conceived, that where these things are permitted, the soldiers are made subservient to other purposes; accordingly they have been employed to punish the paramours of their officers’ wives—to eject a troublesome tenant—or at times to take vengeance for affronts, in cases where it might not be safe for the injured person to do so.53 [123]

These remarks apply more particularly to the Mestizo officers. The Spaniards, and some of the creoles, who are but very few in number, form a respectable class of military men, of whom some few may be cited as models of spirit and discipline: but they are not sufficiently numerous for their example to influence the despicable beings with whom they are unavoidably associated; and the wealth and influence being generally on the side of the native-born officers, these abuses are permitted, and the complaints of others disregarded.

It is but just, however, to remark, that their pay is excessively mean; it is a bare, and miserable subsistence; and due weight should be given to this circumstance in extenuation. A captain of regulars has not more than 80 dollars per month! and so on in proportion, and when we reflect, that from the low value of the circulating medium, a dollar will barely command more than a rupee in any part of India, much must be allowed for men so situated.

Hence, though the men, arms, and accoutrements are not bad, the troops are, from abuses, embezzlement, and neglect, miserably deficient in a military point of view, and but poorly calculated to answer any efficient purpose. To this description, the regiment [124]of artillery and Pampango militia are exceptions: the style of equipment and discipline of the first are a high testimony of the activity and military talents of their colonel. The queen’s regiment is by far the most respectable of the infantry.

Their cavalry are badly mounted, the horses being very small, and by no means good. The men too are clumsily equipped, with swords manufactured apparently in the 14th century, being straight, disproportionably long, and furnished with a steel poignet or basket, above which is a cross, resembling the rapiers of that time.

Their marine is still more miserably deficient in the requisite qualities for essential service, and suffers more from the mal-administration of its various branches. All work done in the royal arsenal is computed to cost at least 40 per cent. more than that by individuals! The marine consists of a flotilla of 40 or 50 gun-boats, and as many feluccas,54 of which about one half, or fewer, may be in constant activity; with what effect has been already remarked.

Like the army, the navy is almost entirely officered by creoles and Mestizos, whose pay is but a subsistence, and consequently no prospect is offered to young men of family and enterprise who may have other resources.

The arsenal at Cavite, about 10 miles from Manila, is well provided with officers and workmen, but has no docks. Vessels, however, may heave down [125]with great safety; and the work, though expensive, is remarkably well executed.

The agriculture of this very fertile country is yet in its infancy. Oppressed with so many enemies to his advancement, and placed in a climate where the slightest exertion insures subsistence, the Indian has, like the majority of his Malay brethren, been content with supplying his actual wants, without seeking for luxuries. Hence, and from the expulsion of the Jesuits, they have made no advances beyond the common attainments of the surrounding islanders.

This spirited and indefatigable order of men, who, both by precept and example, encouraged agriculture, not only as the source of national greatness, but as preparatory to, and inseparable from, conversion to Christianity, which they well knew did not consist alone in ceremonies, but in fulfilling the duties of citizens and men, and who, whatever were their political sins, certainly possessed more than any other the talent of converting men from savage to civilized life, have left in the Phillippines some striking monuments of their wide-spreading and well-directed influence. Extensive convents (the ground stories of which were magazines), in the centre of fertile districts formerly in the highest state of cultivation, but now more than half abandoned,—tunnels,—canals,—reservoirs and dams, by which extensive tracts were irrigated for the purposes of cultivation, attest the spirit with which they encouraged this science; and if their expulsion was a political necessity, it certainly appears to have been in this country a moral evil.

The restraints imposed on commerce were another insuperable bar to their prosperity, as depriving [126]them of a market for their produce. Since foreigners have been allowed free intercourse with them, their agriculture has in some degree improved by the increased demand of produce; but under the present system, but little can be expected from it.55

The soil is in general a rich red mould, with a great proportion of iron, and in some districts volcanic matters; it is easily worked and very productive: that in the immediate vicinity of Manila, and for four or five miles round it, extending to that distance from the coast of the Bay, is an alluvial soil, formed by the confluence of the numerous rivers with the ocean; it is stiff, and in all respects very inferior to the other. In some parts are extensive tracts, the reservoirs of the waters from the mountains in the rainy season, which first yield an amazing supply of fish,56 and then a good crop of rice or pasture for the buffaloes.

The frequent rains, and the numerous rivers and streams with which the country is every-where intersected, adds to its extraordinary fertility: it is seldom, [127]if ever, afflicted with droughts, but is at times devastated by locusts (perhaps once in 10 or 15 years), and these make dreadful havoc amongst the canes. Their attacks, however, are partial, and generally take place after the rice is harvested, in December, disappearing before the rains. In 1818, nearly the whole of the canes were destroyed by them, and the Ayuntamiento of Manila expended from 60 to 80,000 dollars in purchasing large quantities of them, which were thrown into the sea.58

The buffalo is universally used in all field labours, [128]for which, however, he is but poorly calculated: the slowness of his pace, and his great suffering from heat, which obliges the labourer to bathe him frequently, occasion a very considerable loss of time, which is scarcely compensated by his great strength and little expense in keeping. Indeed, the bullock should perhaps be on all occasions substituted for him, excepting only in the cultivation of rice fields. In a few districts, this is the case; but it is with reluctance that the native uses him in preference to the buffalo.

Their breed of horses is small, but very hardy: they are never used for agricultural purposes, though but few of the peasants are without one for riding, and many of them have two or three. In the province of Pampanga (the finest tribe of Indians in the Phillippines), they risk considerable sums on races! of which they are very fond.

Their plough is of Chinese origin: it has but one handle, and no coulter or mould-board, the upper part of the share, which is flat, and turned to one side, performing this part of the work. The common harrow is composed of five or six pieces of the stems of the thorny bamboos, which at the lower part are almost solid; these are united by a long peg of the same, passing through all the pieces: to these the hard branches of thorns are left appending, and being cut off at a short distance from the stem, form the teeth of the instrument, which, rude as it is, performs its work well, and usefully, and is seldom out of order.

For cleaning and finally pulverizing the ground, they have another harrow of Chinese origin, (or an invention of the Jesuits?) It is of wrought iron, and [129]for simplicity and utility it is, I think, unequalled. By means of it they can extirpate the Lallang grass (Andropogon caricosum), called by them Cogon,60 and which no other instrument will perform so well, that I am acquainted with.

A hoe, like that of the West Indies, answers the purposes of a spade; and (with the basket) of a shovel. A large knife (the Malay Parang), called “Bolo,” completes the list of their agricultural instruments. Machinery they cannot be said to possess, except a rude mill of two cylinders for cane, and another for grinding their rice, can be called such. The greater part of the rice is beaten from the husk in wooden mortars, and by hand.

The rainy season commences with the S. W. monsoon, and ends in October. The rice (the aquatic sorts) is planted by hand in July and August, and reaped in December. The upland rice, of which they have two varieties, is planted earlier, and comes sooner to maturity. The cane is planted in the manner called “en canon” by the French, that is, the plant piece is stuck diagonally into the ground; and thus, from the roots being often on the surface, the plant suffers frequently from drought, and they have seldom two crops from a piece of cane: their sugar, though clumsily manufactured, is of excellent grain, and highly esteemed by the refiners of Europe.

The indigo plant is very fine; and though, as in all countries, a precarious crop, yet it is far from being so much so as in India: it has been manufactured equal to Guatemala, but in the present day is of a very inferior quality: this arises from various causes, of which the principal are ignorance in the manufacture [130]of it, a want of capital, and spirit of enterprise. They have no tanks of masonry, the whole process being carried on in two wooden vats of a very moderate size, from which the fecula is taken once a week. It is needless to remark, that the quality of the indigo is materially injured by this alone: it is also subject to many adulterations in the hands of the Mestizos, before being brought to market.

The coffee plant was almost entirely unknown about 40 years ago, a few plants only existing in the gardens about Manila. It was gradually transported from thence to the towns in the neighbourhood of the lake, where it has been since multiplied to an amazing degree by an extraordinary method. A species of civet cat with which the woods abound, swallows the berries,61 and these passing through the animal entire, take root, and thus the forests are filled with wild plants. This fact may be depended upon, and the major part of all the coffee exported from Manila is produced from the wild plants, and is equal or superior in flavour to that of Bourbon. The government, in 1795 or 96, made an attempt to force its cultivation in the province of Bulacan, but forgot, as one of their own officers naivement observes, “Que no habia compradores ni consumidores”—that there were neither consumers or customers for it! It [131]of course fell to the ground, and in the next passage of the same work, the Indian is partly blamed for it!

The cultivation of cotton is as yet but very partial. It is of the herbaceous species, of a very fine quality, almost equalling the Bourbon, but excessively adherent to the grain: so much so indeed, that none of the attempts to separate it from the seed by machinery have hitherto succeeded; the grains passing through the rollers, and staining the cotton. It is cleared by the natives by means of a hand-mill, very clumsy in its construction, and performing so little work, that the cleaning costs six dollars per pekul.

The principal part of the cotton comes from the province of Ylocos, where large quantities of stuffs are manufactured. The brown cotton, for which a prize was offered in 1818 by the Society of Arts, grows in great quantities, and is manufactured into durable cloths and blankets. The prices of agricultural labour vary from 1 rial63 per day near Manila to ¾ and ½ rial in the provinces—a plough with two buffaloes and a man, 2½ rials. The workmen, like day labourers in all countries, are often “looking for sunset;” but when allowed task work, are willing and industrious. A plough will go over rather more than a loan64 of ground in a day—about a quinion in three months. [132]

Of the produce of any given cultivation, it is difficult to speak with any degree of correctness: calculations of this kind are difficult to make amongst a people labouring each for himself, and all for the wants of the day: for, unaccustomed to generalize, each gives his own as the average, and hence the discrepancy which every person must have remarked who has had occasion to make inquiries of this description in half civilized countries, where a main point, the value of the labourer’s time, and of that of his animals, is invariably left out, as is also the difference of work for himself and for a master. The tables given at the conclusion of Comyn’s work are, as far as regards the vicinity of the capital, very erroneous. They are also very deficient in many [133]points.67 The following is a much nearer approximation.

A quinion of land requires four ploughings and three harrowings, say six ploughings in all.

Ds. Rs.
Now as 1 Quinion will occupy a hired labourer about 90 days at 2½ Rials = 28 Dollars 1 Rial, which for six times is 168 6
Fencing, 12 Ds.; Grubbing, &c., 15; Cane Slips, 25; Planting, 18; Weeding and Hoeing, 30; Carriage, 18; Manufacture, 45; Pilones, &c., 12 175 0
Cost 343 6
Produce at low average, 150 Pilones,68 salable at 3½ Ds. 487 4
Profit 143 6

This supposes the proprietor of the cane to be possessed [134]of a mill, buffaloes, &c. for the wear of which no estimate is made.

The 150 pilones of sugar, each weighing about 150 lbs. gross, will produce the refiner who has purchased them about 100 piculs of sugar, of which

S. Ds.
80 1st sort, worth 6¼ Dollars 500 0
20 2d ditto, and Molasses, &c. 3¾ 75 0
575 0
They have cost him about 487 4
Refiner’s allowance on 100 Pilones, S. Ds. 47 8

The profits of the refiner would appear high; and [135]they have been so; but are far from what this statement appears to give, from various reasons, of which the chief are, the heavy capital sunk in buildings, interest on advances, &c. and from a want of knowledge, the enormous waste of labour in the process. A glance at this may give an idea of what trade is at these antipodes of commercial knowledge.

I have termed the process “refining;” it should rather be called claying and sorting—and it is as clumsily managed as the ingenuity of man could well devise. The trade is principally in the hands of three or four capitalists; advances are made by these to brokers, the provincial merchants, who annually bring their produce to the capital in small vessels,69 and to the masters of coasting traders, in which the [136]sugar merchants have shares. These are made to a large amount, 80 to 100,000 dollars; and as the interest of this must at least run for six months at 9 per cent. it forms a heavy item. Losses and defaulters form another, say ½ per cent. in all 5 per cent.

The pilones are delivered from November to May and June, and are received into extensive warehouses, which are provided with large court-yards and terraced roofs. Here the upper part of the pilone is cut off, and a quantity of manufactured sugar being pressed down on the top of it, a thin layer of the river mud is put on it; this is watered from time to time and changed once or twice, the pilone standing on a small foot, with the small hole at its apex left open, through which the molasses slowly drains, leaving the upper and broader part of the pilone of a fine white, gradually decreasing in goodness to the bottom, where it is little more than molasses—the pilone is then cut in two; the darker part is put by as second quality (or reboiled), and the whiter portion as firsts, of the sugar, the care taken in the process, the kind of mud used, &c. About two piculs of sugar from three pilones is a fair average, when these are of a good size. That from the province of Pampanga is by far the best; it is produced from a small red cane70 [137]about four feet high, and of the thickness of a good walking stick.

The sugar being thus clayed, is now to be mixed, pounded, and dried. The last process is performed by laying it on small mats in the sun, on the terraces and pavements of the court-yards. On the slightest appearance of rain, it must be hurried under cover, and brought out again when this is past. So that in a manufacture of any size, when from 3 to 400 Chinese are employed at 4½ dollars per month, fully ⅓d of their labour is expended on this operation alone. The management of the rest requires no comment.

The cost of production of any of the other articles cannot be estimated to any degree of correctness, from the very small scale on which they are cultivated, and the limited knowledge of the writer of these remarks. Those of Comyn are erroneous.

The Indians are the principal and almost the only cultivators of the soil, very few Mestizos or Chinese71 being engaged in it. The few Spaniards and other Europeans who have attempted it, have been obliged to abandon their attempts to form plantations. These failures, or rather determination to [138]abandon their speculations (even when in a promising state), have arisen from various causes; but the general one may be stated to be the very little security for life and property, in a country such as has been described. This is with the major part an insuperable objection; for from the moment they are established, and known to possess money for the payment of their workmen, they must be in expectation of an attack, and prepared to defend themselves; nor can they lie down at night free from the apprehension of seeing their establishments in flames before morning! either from robbers, or from malice of any individual who may think himself aggrieved:—the impossibility of obtaining justice so generally experienced by the Indians, and the many chances of escaping punishment, being strong inducements to the ill-disposed to adopt these modes of revenge. To this it may be added, that even were the foreigner to kill the most determined robber in the country, the circumstance of having done so in defence of his life and property, would by no means exonerate him from a fleecing by the inferior officers of justice, and from a long and tiresome process of depositions, declarations, &c. during which his affairs must be entirely neglected.73 [139]

In addition to this he must lay his account with another obstacle, and this none of the smallest—the chance of bad faith on the part of those with whom he is connected; a chance which by no means will diminish in proportion to his success; for, let no foreigner deceive himself on this head in Manila; if he cannot flatter as low, or bribe as high as his adversary, his cause is lost by some means or other.

The Phillippines also produce cacao of an excellent quality, though not sufficient for their consumption, a large quantity being imported from New Spain.

Pepper is also an article of exportation, but in very limited quantities, the utmost the Phillippine Company have been able to procure being about 60,000 lbs. in favourable years.

To these may be added the Abaca (Musa textilis), a species of plantain, from which the beautiful fibres are procured known by that name. This is becoming a very considerable article of exportation, both raw, and manufactured into cordage. The natives also consume large quantities of it in cordage, and as shirting cloth, into which a large portion of the interior [140]and finer fibres are manufactured. Some of it is equal to the coarser sort of China grass cloth.74

In Gogo,76 a gigantic climbing plant, whose trunk attains the size of a man’s body, is another remarkable production of these islands. Its branches being cut out into lengths, are coarsely pounded and dried in the sun: they are used as soap by all classes of people, the saponaceous fluid which is extracted from them being remarkably cleansing, and the fibres answering the purpose of a brush.

It is also used in large quantities in washing the earth of rivers and streams, to separate the gold from them. It is not cultivated, but exists in great abundance in the forests, in which are also the sapan-wood (called Sibacao), the sandal, ebony, and vanilla. They abound in gums and resins, large portions of which are washed down by the torrents; but these are for the most part useless, either from the ignorance of the natives, or from the impossibility of venturing far in the interior.

Their timber is excellent, and in a country so covered with forests, of course plentiful; but the want of [141]roads and other conveniences of transport, renders it, in Manila, rather an expensive article.

The principal timber woods are, the “Mulave” [i.e., Molave], a compact, heavy, yellowish wood, and almost incorruptible, perhaps from the very great portion of tannin it contains. Tindalo,78 a hard wood, much resembling the iron-wood of the Brasils, and like it used for screws, &c., &c. when great hardness is required. “Betis,” an excellent timber tree, which grows to a very great size, and for its durability is generally used for the main beams of churches, convents, and other large buildings. The “Narra,” of which there are two kinds, the white and red: this last is almost equal to mahogany in polish and durability. Banaba, a red wood resembling cedar; and many others of equal goodness. Of these the Banaba and Mulave are most used in shipbuilding, the first for planking, and the last for the framework. For masts, the Manga-chapuy and Palo-maria are generally used: the last is equal or superior to pine, both in strength and lightness.

Their forests are not infested with those ferocious animals which are the terror of those of other Asiatic countries. The tiger, elephant, and rhinoceros are unknown: the wild buffalo and hog are the only ones of which the native has any dread. These attain an enormous size, but are not mischievous, unless provoked. The dried flesh and hides of these animals, [142]as well as of deer and wild cattle, which are in immense numbers, form a considerable article of trade amongst the natives, the “tappa” or dried flesh being used for food, and the hides for exportation.

Their serpents, however, attain an enormous size: the largest are those of the Boa species (Constrictor), and will devour a horse or a cow at a meal.79 Of this genus there is one variety very beautifully marked, which frequents the houses, and is called by the Spaniards (Culebra casera), the house snake,80 and by the Indians “Sawa.” These are often seen from 10 to 12 feet in length, but are very harmless. Few houses are without one or more of them in the cellars, stables, &c. but they are seldom disturbed, as they are said to devour rats and other noxious animals; though, when these fail them, they attack fowls, or even goats. They form a favourite article of food with the Chinese, who keep them in jars to fatten, and the Indians may be often seen carrying them through the streets for sale.

Of other varieties they have great numbers; some of which, as the “dahun palay,” or leaf of rice, of a deep green and yellow, which frequents the rice fields, and the “mandadalag,” or whip-snake, are excessively venomous: accidents from these animals are not, however, very frequent; from whence it may be concluded, that the superstition of the natives has greatly exaggerated the number of venomous ones: and this may be the more readily inferred, not only from their excessively superstitious character, and [143]the common custom of all nations in this particular; but also from the thousand ridiculous fables told by them of the cameleon, which is very common in the woods, and perfectly harmless. The Indian name for it is “Ynyano.”

Of minerals they have an inexhaustible supply: gold is found in almost all the streams, and even in the sands of the shores of the Bay after blowing weather: no mines of it have as yet been wrought, though they are known to exist. The quantity obtained by the rude efforts of the natives merely washing the sands of the torrents, is very great, and certainly does not fall short of 4 to 500,000 dollars worth annually, as great quantities are expended in gilding for the churches, &c. &c.

Silver is also found, but in small quantities. Virgin copper is another produce of their mountains: pieces of it are frequently met with in the torrents, and on the shores of some of the islands (Masbate, Burias, and Ambil). The negroes have also been seen with rude ornaments, and even with utensils made from it.

Of iron they have whole mountains in the very vicinity of Manila! (provinces of Pampanga and Bulacan), some of the ores yielding 75 per cent. of metal, and of an excellent quality, this having been ascertained by some Biscayan iron-masters sent out for that purpose. It contains great numbers of magnets. There are some miserable establishments for working and smelting these ores, but on a very small scale; they have only produced cast iron articles, and those of an inferior quality. They have no forging machinery.82 [144]

Cinnabar, lead, and tin are supposed to exist; but of these last there is no certainty.

Sulphur is found in the neighbourhood of the volcanoes in considerable quantities, and is an article of export to Bengal and other places: the principal part of it is collected on the island of Leyté, which is next to Samar on the south side of the strait of St. Bernardino. It is collected on the edges of numerous small apertures, which emit at times flames and smoke. These are situated in an extensive plain near the sea-coast in the vicinity of the village of Dulag, on the eastern side of the island. With these natural advantages, and those are not few that still remain to be enumerated, the commerce of this country, like its agriculture, is still in its infancy: and this has been principally owing to two great causes—the trade to Acapulco, and the prohibitory system invariably pursued by Spain in regulating the intercourse with her colonies, and which here has been burdened with an additional weight, the monopoly of the Phillippine Company.

It were a task far exceeding the intention and ability of the writer of these remarks to point out the causes and effects of these extensive evils:—a few observations only will be made to elucidate such remarks as may follow on the commerce of Manila.

Of the prohibitory system pursued by Spain towards her colonies, it may perhaps be said, with as much justice as of her wars, that it was, “en faire un desert pour s’en assurer l’empire;83 for few systems [145]could have been better calculated to assure the first object; the last has miserably disappointed its advocates, and left a striking lesson to the world, at which humanity has cause to rejoice.

With jealousy of foreigners exceeding even the bounds of credibility, she invariably refused them admittance,84 whether for scientific or commercial purposes;85 or when from accident or influence this was obtained, the people following, and often exceeding the lessons of their rulers, by civil and religious persecutions, and contempt, contrived to render their existence almost a burden. It would appear to have become an axiom amongst them, remarkable only for its illiberality, that “a dollar gained by foreigners was one taken from the pocket of a Spaniard;”86 and that in all cases where the [146]interests of the merchants of the mother country and those of the colonies were opposed, the latter were to be sacrificed.87 Her own subjects were, from the same miserable narrow policy, embarrassed with restrictions and conditions—permissions from the Consejo de las Yndias, &c. &c. that it became by no means a trifling affair to be able to embark for the Phillippines, unless at the risk of being sent home from there by the local authorities.

Unable herself, from the want of manufactures and energy, to profit by her colonies, she obstinately refused to allow others to do so, and in this she invariably persisted. The fruits of such a system were such as might have been expected; the colonies submitted—(while they were obliged by force to do so), smuggled to a large amount, remonstrated, resisted, and declared themselves independent; and thus has Spain forever lost those advantages which a more liberal policy might have secured to her through a long course of time.88 [147]

In the Philippines, this system, though followed for a long time, has been of late years successively relaxed, and the good effects of this modification are visible to the most indifferent observer: it has however left deep traces of its operations, and much is still wanting: the foreign merchant or adventurer, how much soever he may be smiled upon and caressed, has still to contend against a rooted and long cherished jealousy of all that is not Spanish.

The Acapulco trade is another and a principal cause of the very confined state of the commerce of this valuable colony. A few remarks will be sufficient to justify the apparent paradox.

The merchant of Manila (says Comyn), is “entirely different from the merchant of other parts of the world; he has no extensive correspondence, no books, or intricate accounts; his operations are confined to a shipment of bales to Acapulco, and to receiving the silver in return: and in 40 years, only one or two instances have occurred wherein bankrupts have been able to produce a correct set of books to the Consulado (or Chamber of Commerce)!” This description was doubtless correct at the time when it was written (1809); but it is just to observe that they are now much improved, and though not [148]excessively enterprising, are better acquainted with the true principles of commerce. Such were the merchants: let us examine a little the trade.

The basis of it was, and is, the funds called “Obras Pias”89 (Pious Works). These are funds under various denominations, whose origin was the piety of well-meaning Spaniards, who dying rich have bequeathed large sums for the purpose of lending to deserving traders to commence or continue their career with. The administration of these is confided to various religious and charitable institutions, or to civil associations—the trustees forming a board, at which the sums to be lent, &c. are determined. Their statutes differ in many unessential points;90 but their [149]general tenour is the same, viz. that sums not exceeding two thirds of the fund shall be lent on respondentia at certain rates of interest, which are fixed according to the risk of the voyages; and these, when repaid, shall be added, principal and interest, to the original fund. The interests are 25 per cent. to Acapulco, 15 to Bengal, and so in proportion. The total of the capitals of these establishments (there are 12 or 14 of them), amounted to about three millions and a half of dollars in 1820, of which about two millions are due to the funds on various risks, principally those of New Spain: of this the major part is considered as lost by those best qualified to judge of the subject.

The principal employ of these funds has been in the commerce to Acapulco; and from the facility with which capital was procured, the excessive gambling spirit which this introduced, as well as the system of mutual accommodations from the trustees of different funds, and the utter absence of the wholesome restraint of public examinations of their accounts, it has resulted that more harm than good has been done by these establishments. The original intentions are entirely perverted, a few small sums being lent to young adventurers (when they have powerful friends), but far the greatest part is employed by the trustees themselves under the name of a relation or friend.91 [150]

When, without risking any capital of his own, the merchant might thus share the enormous profits of this trade, with no more exertion than signing the invoices and letters (they were written by Indian clerks), and receiving the treasure on the return of the vessel, it is not surprising that for nearly two centuries they neglected all the other commercial advantages which surrounded them, or that such a commerce produced such merchants: the history of it and of them for that period may be confined to a few words:—they were the agents of the merchants of Madras and Bengal, receiving and shipping their goods, and returning their proceeds, while their profits were confined to a large commission on them.92

This trade was anciently confined to a single ship annually, the famous Galleon. She was fitted out, manned and armed, at the king’s expense, and commanded by a king’s officer. This was reimbursed by a duty of 33⅓ per cent. on the registered cargo, the merchants contributing to her provisionment, [151]and to the payment of 20,000 dollars as a bounty to her commander. She was calculated to carry 3,000 bales of a certain size, and the privilege of shipping these was confined to the holders of 1,000 tickets called “boletas,” which were divided amongst different public bodies, charitable and religious institutions, the widows of the officers, &c., these tickets being saleable to others:93 and of the enormous profit on this trade, some idea may be formed, when it is known, that with the very heavy expenses attendant on every stage of it, 500 dollars have been paid for a ticket entitling the holder to ship three bales!

By regulation, the invoice was not to exceed 500,000 dollars; but this was always evaded. The vessels were crammed with goods, and generally netted 100 per cent. or even 150 on every thing taken out.94 By applications from private merchants, the permissions have of late years been extended to their ships, and even brigs; but they still were encumbered with many useless restrictions and conditions, which of course were evaded by every means that could be devised.

By the adoption of the new constitution, and the late declaration of the independence of Mexico,95 [152]which began in the seizure of a convoy of nearly a million of dollars belonging to the merchants of Manila, this trade is now almost annihilated.

As has been remarked, their intercourse with the other countries is very limited. The Phillippine Company, who were in possession of the exclusive trade of Europe, have for many years taken no advantage of their privilege (the last ship which arrived from Spain was in 1817);96 but private merchants were still debarred from doing so, till the promulgation of the constitution.97 Foreigners have been, however, gradually admitted since 1800; and they have supplied the wants of the country by introducing European articles, and carrying off the surplus produce, when a sufficient quantity could be procured to employ their capital, which rarely happens without much delay. So rapid has been the augmentation of this trade, that though in 1813 only 15,000 pekuls of sugar were exported, it had increased [153]in 1818 to 200,000, at from 6½ to 9 dollars per pekul. The other exports of the same year were as follows:—

Coffee, about 400 pekuls, at 28 dollars; Cotton, 1,000, at 20 to 25 dollars; Indigo, 1,000 quintals, at 90 to 110 dollars per quintal; wax, 600 pekuls at 40 to 50 dollars; red wood, &c. &c. in large quantities. In a printed account, the number of foreign vessels for that year (1818) are stated to be, English, 18; American, 10; French, 4; Portuguese, 2; Chinese Junks, 10, and 8 Spanish vessels. The value of imports as follows:

Goods, 2,296,272 dollars
Cash, 758,239

The exports, 1,205,649 dollars; but this last is any thing but correct, not only from the very imperfect nature of the custom-house valuations, but from the smuggling, which is carried on to an immense amount. It will be nearer the truth to estimate the imports at about 3,8, or 3,900,000, and the exports at 3¼ or 3,500,000.98

The imports consist of piece-goods for the Acapulco market, and for home consumption from Bengal; cambrics and handkerchiefs of plaided patterns [154]from Madras; woollens, wines, spirits, silks, printed cottons, hosiery, hardware, &c. from Europe (principally from France); bird’s nests, tortoise and mother-of-pearl shell, bich-de-mar [i.e., balate], wax, dried fish, &c. from Soolo, Borneo, and other islands of the Archipelago; toys, silks, nankeens, teas, and dollars from China; dollars from the United States; and from South America, silver, cochineal, and cacao. Of these articles the specie and cochineal are mostly exported to Bengal and Madras, and the produce of the Soolos and Borneo to China; the other exports have been noticed in a preceding page.

An active coasting trade99 is carried on by the natives amongst the islands, though they suffer dreadfully from the pirates; but such is their enterprising turn, that with these in sight, they will often cross from one island to another, when they have a fair start; and frequently set out on a long trip in a small prow [i.e., prau], armed only with their spears and “campilans,”100 though knowing the pirates to be in [155]the neighbourhood of their track. They are well known in the piratical states, where a Manila slave always commands a higher price than any other. They have been much stigmatized in British country-ships, as the leaders of mutinies, &c.; but though no doubt can exist that they have often assisted in cutting off vessels, yet I question much whether the fault was not in a great measure to be attributed to a want of discrimination between the high spirit of the Philippine islander, and the meek sufferance of the patient Lascar—a fatal mistake, when both are trampled on, as it is to be feared they but too often are.

This trade is carried on in pontines,101 galeras, feluccas, and prows or boats of all sizes. The pontines are stout-built vessels of European models, from 80 to 150 tons, with two long mat sails, like a Chinese junk. The “galeras” are smaller, and carry a lateen sail, like those of the Mediterranean. The feluccas have been already described, and their prows and boats resemble nearly those of their Malay brethren. Large property is often embarked in these vessels, and they are conducted entirely by natives.

They have but a few manufactures: the principal one is that of coarse gauzes, and rope from the Abaca plant, the first of which has a very extensive consumption and is universally worn by all classes of the natives. It is principally carried on in the province of Camarines, at the S. E. angle of the island.

Considerable quantities of coarse canvas and striped cloths are manufactured from cotton in the province of Ylocos; and in those in the more immediate [156]vicinity of the capital, the striped cloths called “tapis” are universally worn by the native women over their petticoat. None of these articles except the Abaca rope are exported, and probably the whole of the cloths might be imported at a cheaper rate than they are made. The Phillippine Company, by a mistaken policy, expended large sums in endeavoring to render these manufactures articles of export to Spain and the Americas; but after heavy and repeated losses, the attempt was at length abandoned.

I am not certain whether there was not a clause in their charter, obliging them to attempt this; and from the interfering spirit of Spanish legislature throughout the last two centuries, it is more than probable it was so. For the Company must have seen the impropriety of endeavoring to establish manufactures in a country so thinly populated, and where the little security for property or power of enforcing contracts, must have exposed them to a thousand losses unknown in Europe.

This last circumstance is one which is at all times a severe check on the prosperity of any undertaking in this country. The most shameless frauds are daily committed, particularly by the Chinese and Chinese Mestizos, and for these there is no resource; complaint is unavailing, for the trouble of obtaining redress is greater than the injury, and it is a matter of common conversation—how so and so has been cheated in his contracts. They appear to mistake indolence for compassion, and allow themselves to be robbed with impunity, rather than pursue the offender, or, should they do so, the magistrate to whom they apply is but too apt, if the affair is intricate, to [157]mistake procrastination for deliberation, and thus the culprit escapes unpunished. The losses of private merchants and the individuals in this way, would, if enumerated, exceed belief. Another and a most serious drawback to the commercial prosperity of the Phillippines, has been the negligence or ignorance, or both which have prevented the establishment of bonded warehouses, or a system of drawback duties on re-exportations. A glance at their position, and the consideration of the monsoons, will convince any one, that this was of all things that for which ample provision should have been made; and it would be no exaggeration to say, that this commerce would in a few years have increased tenfold with China alone, had this plan been adopted. The enormous duties and vexatious spirit of the Chinese government, together with, what must doubtless be often the case, the fleecing combinations of the Hong merchants;102 would long ago have driven every vessel from their ports, could another have been found near enough to insure a supply of goods, which, from the enterprising spirit of the Chinese, could not have failed. Manila is this port. From Amoy and Nankin, the granaries and workshops of the eastern provinces, the most fertile and commercial part of the empire, it is but a short run to Manila; and thus, when the Chinese could freely trade in their favourite article, opium,103 and find too an assortment of European [158]and Malay goods, while the European could complete his investment of funds with the valuable produce [159]of China,104 without the expense of the measurement duties, and while the Malay could trade with both, an emporium might have risen, inferior only perhaps to Batavia or Calcutta. [160]

An attempt was made in 1817, by a Spanish merchant, to commence something of this sort. He purchased a quantity of Turkey opium from an American, with an understanding that it was to be reshipped, on payment of a small additional duty. It was so, but a quantity of the opium was plundered from the custom-house godowns, and the proprietor was told “that the king was not responsible for losses.”

Plan of the environs, and a portion of the coast and bay adjacent to the city of Manila, 1779 (?)

Plan of the environs, and a portion of the coast and bay adjacent to the city of Manila, 1779 (?)

[From original MS. map (in colors), in Archivo general de Indias, Sevilla]

It would be foreign to the object of a cursory sketch like the present to enter farther into the details of this subject. Enough has been said to bear out an assertion, which those who are acquainted with the trade will not think exaggerated, that had this system been fairly and equitably established, one half of the trade to China would before this have centered at Manila; and it is only at Manila that the advantages of such a transit could have been unknown or neglected in the 19th century. I proceed to make some observations on the capital and its inhabitants.105




Manila,106 the capital of the “kingdom of the Phillippines,107 in lat. 14° 26 N. and long. 121° 3 East [163]of Greenwich, is situated on the eastern side of an extensive bay in the western coast of the island Luzon, or Luconia, as it is sometimes called. It is a captain general-ship (not a viceroyalty), and archbishopric, and the seat of the Audiencia, or Supreme Tribunal.

The city forms nearly a sector of a circle, of which the center is a point formed by the coast and the influence of a small but rapid river, the Passig, which flowing to the westward, and passing to the north of the city, discharges the waters of an extensive lake about 30 miles distant from the town. This river is navigable for vessels of 250 tons for a small distance from its entrance, which is formed by two fine moles, built by the municipality of the city. On the southern of these is a small semicircular battery for four guns, and on the other a light-house. The southern or outer mole is much out of repair.

The constant and rapid current of the river forms a bar at its entrance, over which there is 10, and at times 11 feet water at spring tides, in a narrow channel close to the battery.

The city is well fortified on the sea and land faces, but on that towards the river very indifferently, being only defended by a long curtain with a few ill-constructed bastions, which from their diminutive size are rather playthings than bastions. The curtain is narrow, and confined on the inside, and unfit for guns of calibre; the buildings within the city overlooking, and even joining the wall in some places. On the other side of the river, within 200 yards of this curtain, are a number of stone houses, along the whole length of its bank; and the bases of these [164]being walls of eight and ten feet thick of solid masonry, would afford an immediate cover for an enemy, who might breach the curtain in ten minutes at so short a distance, and with perfect safety, the fire from some of these taking the whole of the works on the N. Eastern side in reverse. Indeed its only defence on this side is the river,108 the current of which is always rapid.

Over it is a neat but narrow stone bridge of ten arches, which joins the city at its northern angle to the suburbs. On the city side of the bridge is a square tower, with an archway pierced through it, and with embrasures on the top. This is intended as a “tête de pont;” but it is too small for any effective purpose, and, like the bastions on this face, resembles a military plaything; and this defect is the more striking, as the fortifications, from this angle on the land and sea faces, are remarkably handsome and well proportioned.

At the north-western point of the city, which joins the mole, is the citadel of Santiago, a clumsy old-fashioned fortification, separated from the rest of the city by a narrow ditch with a stone bridge, but joined by the curtains of the bastions. It is incapable of any respectable defence, except from a semicircular bastion, which forms the point, and commands the moles and entrance to the river. It is now used as a state prison and magazine. The convicts employed in the public works are also lodged in it. This was the refuge of the unfortunate foreigners who escaped from the massacre on the 9th of October 1820; and to the honour of the commandant (Col. [165]Don A. Parreno), and his lady be it recorded, they found there another home.

The length of the city within the walls is 1,300 yards Spanish, from N. W. to S. E.; its width 744, and circumference 4,166. The side towards the river, it has already been remarked, is, from the want of bastions, and from the encumbered state of the approaches to it, in a very defective state. The sea and land faces are exactly the reverse of this, being remarkably clear and strong.

The land face has a double ditch, and an esplanade of five or six hundred yards in breadth, which towards the river is marshy and swampy, and utterly unfit for military operations. Towards the sea, and for some miles along the coast, is an epaulement,109 thrown up when in expectation of an attack from the English in 1804. On this esplanade formerly stood a church, from the tower of which the English under Sir W. Draper fired into the heart of the city:110 [166]it is now razed. There is also a small battery called Charles the Fourth’s, on an elevated spot in the marshy ground; it is about 350 yards from the fortifications and is mostly used as an exercising battery. Another redoubt of stone stands at the southern point of the outer ditch, and flanks the sea shore to a considerable distance to the southward: it also serves to cover the head of the outer ditch, which is not carried round the sea face, apparently for want of room, as its crest would nearly approach high water mark in this part.

There are six gates to the city, two on each face: those on the land side have neat stone bridges over the outer ditch, which are not mined, and, being of solid masonry, would be found cumbersome in case of an attack. The inner ones, and those on the sea side, are of wood or stone pillars with drawbridges. The ditches are wide and deep, but much encumbered with mud and weeds, from which last the fortifications also have suffered. The bastions on the sea and land sides are in many places without embrasures, the guns being “en barbette.”111 The shore is not very flat, and will perhaps allow a frigate to lay within gunshot of the ramparts.

Within the walls of the city is the cathedral, the inside of which is very handsome, though the exterior is destitute of all symmetry, and seems to have been intended as a contrast to the majestic architecture of the interior.

The governor’s palace resembles a decent barn or warehouse, both externally and internally. It is large, dirty, and ill distributed, the basement being used as a prison. [167]

The Cabildo, or Town House, is a handsome building, and the only one in the country which has any pretensions to symmetry, of which the architects of the Phillippines take every opportunity of shewing a sovereign contempt:—so much so, that it is rare to find even the doors and windows, or the angles of a room, correctly placed and laid out! These three buildings form three sides of a small square, the only one in the city, of about 100 yards on each side, the fourth side being occupied by private houses. In the centre is a handsome pedestal of reddish marble, on which no statue has yet been placed.112

The streets of the city are narrow and dirty; and the middle being a hollow, in rainy weather forms a continued puddle. They are paved at the sides with granite from China, the stone in the immediate neighbourhood of Manila being too soft. The pavement is not in good repair, and in some streets only occupies one side; the other, which is generally occupied by a large house, or the wall of a convent, being heaped up with dirt, rendered solid by long [168]accumulation, and forming a hill against the wall, the receptacle of …. This is not confined to bye-lanes, but is most common in the great square (Plaza Constitucional) in front of the cathedral!113

The city and suburbs are well lighted, and the European quarters of the last are cleaner than the city.

The convents, which occupy nearly one third of the whole area of the city! are more distinguished for their size and massy architecture, than for their beauty. The church and convent of St. Augustine, and that of the Jesuits (now fast falling to decay), are, however, neat and well built. That of San Domingo is the most extensive.

The hospital of St. John of God, a military order of Knights Hospitallers, is extensive, but for want of funds, is but indifferently entertained.114 There is also a university (St. Thomas), two colleges for the instruction of Indians and mestizos, and three convents of nuns, who receive girls to educate. There are also two schools for girls, both endowed by the [169]piety of single individuals; the first of these being a Spanish lady, who came out from Spain for the express purpose of devoting herself to the education of Indian and mestizo girls! The other is that of a mestizo woman of the village of Binondo, a suburb of Manila.

There are some large houses, but they are generally ill-built and inconvenient, the rooms being often excessively large, and always badly laid out. The ground floor is used for warehouses, stables, &c. and always includes a large court-yard. The first floor only is inhabited. The architecture of the lower part is very massive, being often walls of solid masonry of eight or ten feet thick, with large arches from side to side, and connected with massy beams. At the height of the floor, these walls are discontinued, and on them are raised at distances clumsy pillars of brickwork, or at times of wood (which is seldom straight). These pillars are connected at the top by large joists in all directions, having wooden forelocks driven through them close to the pillars; and on this framework are laid the rafters for the tiled roof; the interstices of the pillars, and divisions of the rooms, being filled up with brick and plaster. The ends of the floor timbers being allowed to project over the walls, form a gallery of eight or ten feet in width along the front of the house, and round it when insulated: this gallery is boarded for about four feet in height in front, and then filled up with sliding windows, the small panes of which are filled with plates of thin mother-of-pearl shell,115 forming one continued window, like [170]the front of a hot-house. The communication to this gallery is by wide folding doors from the rooms, a large one having four or five, which thus admit light and air into the apartments; but the shell windows, when closed against the sun, transmit an intolerable heat, and the houses are not in general cool ones. The galleries are often used as dressing, and even as bathing rooms; and as they overhang the streets, the passenger is often sprinkled from them, in consequence of this dirty practice.

The exterior of these galleries being painted a curious mixture of tawdry colours, such as black, grey, blue, yellow, and red, in panels, flowers, ovals, &c. on white or grey grounds, with their shell windows above, and the grated ones of the godowns below, gives a tawdry and unsociable appearance to the houses. The better sort, and those newly built, have venetians, which greatly improves both their appearance and comfort.

All the houses have a cross, and some two or three, on the roof or gables, as a preservative against evil spirits,116 and lightning; and though few years pass without many accidents from the latter, the crosses are still preserved in preference to conductors, even in the magazines, not one of which is provided with [171]this useful preservative, though that of the citadel contains many thousand pounds of powder.

The suburbs of the city are extensive, and contain many stone houses, in which some of the principal inhabitants reside, and generally all the foreigners, the vicinity of the river, and its many branches, rendering it more convenient for business.

The custom-house is a plain octagonal building of considerable extent, and contains a fine courtyard surrounded with an arcade, and extensive magazines for warehousing goods. These, from neglect and the ravages of the white ants, are fast falling to decay, and in a few years the building will be a ruin; it is now very dirty and ill-arranged, the entrance not being convenient to the river, and wanting quays and a crane. The officers of this establishment are in general attentive, civil, and indulgent to foreigners, though the length of their siestas does not contribute to the dispatch of business. There is no interpreter attached to this establishment, nor is the king responsible for goods or money deposited in it, this being solely at the merchant’s risk.

The “Calzada,” or public drive, is a broad neat carriage road, leading round the outer face of the outer ditch, from the bridge, round the land and sea faces of the fortifications to the river. It is planted with trees, and forms a good drive, having roads leading from it into the country, whose rich and cultivated appearance gives the stranger a high opinion of its fertility. The roads are however much in want of waterings in dry weather, the dust of the principal one being at these times insufferable.

On the road leading to the village of Santa Anna [172]is the cemetery,117 a building well worth the attention of strangers both as a novelty in itself, and as in some measure redeeming the character of the architecture of this country from its general want of interest and symmetry.

It consists of two concentric circular walls, about ten feet apart and fourteen in height, both surmounted with a balustrade. The inner wall forms the periphery of a circle of about 250 feet in diameter, and is pierced with three rows of small semicircular arches, which form the entrances to as many arched, oven-like receptacles, formed in the space betwixt the walls, and of a size just calculated to receive a coffin, to which purpose they are appropriated.

There are from two to three hundred of those receptacles; and when occupied, the entrances are walled up. The plot of ground in the centre is crossed by two broad stone walks, the borders of which are planted with flowers and shrubs; the remaining space is used for interments.

On the further side from the gate, and joined to the wall, is a handsome chapel of an oval shape, the roof being a dome. The interior of this chapel is remarkably neat; and the altar, which is white, and gold, is particularly so, from its elegant simplicity and chasteness of ornament: on each side of it are repositories for the remains of governors and bishops.

Without are flights of steps leading to the terrace [173]joining the walls, and two passages leading to a smaller building at the back of the chapel, and in the same style as the large one. This is called the “Angelorio” and a recess in it the “Ossario.” The first is appropriated to the remains of infants and children, and the last to the bones which may in time accumulate. This purpose suggests the only objection which is apt to arise in viewing the building, which is, that, as in the course of time the receptacles must be filled up, those which have been first occupied must be opened, and the bones displaced to make room for others. To many this is a most revolting objection, and would appear to indicate a dulness of feeling and want of sentiment, which, though far from being uncommon at Manila, by no means accords with the spirit and style in which the building is executed, or with the reflections it is apt to excite.

There are no other buildings in the neighbourhood of Manila worthy the attention of the stranger. The appearance of the surrounding country is rich, and in some parts highly cultivated; but an air of neglect and dilapidation is visible throughout, which strikingly marks the apathetic character of both classes of its inhabitants. It is remarkable, too, that the neatness of the native villages, and the apparent comfort of the people, increase in direct proportion to their distance from the capital, as the influence of government is less felt, and the Indian, knowing no other authority than the “Padre,” retains more of his original character. [174]

The vices of Spanish colonies have been often the theme of those who have visited them; and when speaking of Manila, they have seldom exaggerated.118 It has been observed, and with some justice, that “to know the education of the children, is to know the character of a people.” If this be true, but little can be said for Manila, where this highly important duty is more neglected than perhaps in any civilized part of the globe.

The majority of the young are abandoned entirely to the Indian servants, who soon familiarize them with all that is vicious. They know but little of their parents more than as the master and mistress of the house, whose hand they must kiss, kneeling, every morning and evening. By five years of age they smoke cigars, ride out at night by moonlight, abuse the Indians, and not unfrequently their parents. At 12 they are debauched. At 18 or 20 they marry, and then form the citizens for which such an education has prepared them. They are seldom or ever taught any useful employment or profession. This the majority of them would look upon with the utmost contempt: “Soy gracias a Dios, de sangre noble,”119 is their reply to any advice of this kind; and this is a passport to a cadetship in the army or colonial marine; which, though attained at the age of 12 or 13, seldom finds them with any vice unlearnt. The girls are educated nearly in the [175]same manner, as far as to the acquirement of any useful knowledge. They are sent to the nunneries till 12 or 14 years, and from thence married. Of household duties they know little or nothing, and of any thing else, still less.

The manner of living is nearly as follows: The gentlemen rise about six or seven, and take chocolate. They then lounge about in their shirts and trowsers (the former often outside of the latter) till nine, when they dress, and dictate a letter or two to their writers (they rarely write for themselves); at 10 they breakfast, after which they go out in their carriages to transact any business they may have in town. At 12 or 1 they dine, and from table retire to sleep the siesta, till 4—at 4 chocolate120—at 5 drive on the esplanade, or into the country, till 6 or 7, when visits are received or made till 10 or 11; supper is served hot at this hour, and at midnight they retire to sleep. Some of these evening parties (tertulias) are lively and pleasant, but at most of them gambling is carried on with great avidity. Both ladies and gentlemen smoke at these, as well as at balls and other assemblies. They drink but little wine or strong liquors, their ordinary beverage being water, which is handed round in large glasses with sweetmeats, which are always eaten before drinking water.

Society in Manila is at a very low standard: in a community, the majority of which are men of inferior classes, no very select assemblies can be expected; and those whose character and education might [176]have given another tone to it, are here, from necessity, amalgamated with the crowd. There are in fact only a few houses where a respectable society can be met with; at others the stranger is disgusted with a coarseness of manners, and with unfeeling or often excessively indelicate conversation, and an ignorance of the most common branches of knowledge that must be heard to be credited.

Hence, exclusive of some of the civil and military officers of government, the agents of the Company, and a few respectable merchants and priests, the remainder are but little qualified for select society, and there exists amongst them a want of moral discrimination, a toleration of publicly known vicious characters of both sexes, that is not a little embarrassing to the stranger. This is more particularly the case with the female part of society, with many of whom “era tentada la pobrecita por el demonio!” [i.e., “The poor woman was tempted by the devil”] appears to be a salvo, both at confession and in society, for failings which in Europe inevitably and justly entail expulsion from it.

Such is the society of Manila, and such its manners: from them the general character of those who compose it may be easily imagined; they are polite in offering every thing—but do but little or nothing:—they affect great decency of manners and a religious deportment in all their actions; but any thing but this is to be found in the conduct of the generality; and a common remark amongst themselves, “Esta no es tierra para un hombre de bien,”121 is worth a chapter on the subject.

This may be thought an exaggerated, or at least [177]a highly coloured picture, and it is natural that it should be so. A recital of a well-known custom may add an evidence to these assertions, premising that it is not the only, though the most prominent one that attracts the notice of the stranger: I allude to that of promiscuous bathing. This shamefully indecent custom could exist in no country where the common decencies of life were held in due consideration. Imagine the members of a large family, the father, mother, children, young and old, any visitors who may be in the house and often part of another family, all assembled in a large bath, built out on the river with bamboos, the women with only a petticoat and a gauze chemise, and the men with a thin pair of drawers, and this continuing for one or two hours. This is a Manila bath, to which it is no uncommon thing for an acquaintance to be asked, and in which ⅘ths of all the families in Manila indulge. It may be said in extenuation, that from its frequency no evil arises from it: this may be the case, but it is not the less indecent on that account.

The policy of Spain towards the Phillippines appears to have been to preserve them—no matter how, as it afforded occasion to remark, “that the sun never set in the dominions of his Catholic majesty.” Its neglect of so rich a colony can only be supposed to arise from ignorance, or from a mistaken determination to sacrifice it to the Americans: from which, this is not the place to enquire. It will suffice to observe, that in Spain it has been at all times considered as the “ne plus ultra” of expatriation: a natural consequence of this was the state of society which has been shewn to exist.122 Nor is this idea confined to [178]Spain alone: Mr. Whitbread, when addressing the House on the tyranny of Ferdinand to the liberal party, concluded in the following manner: “Some have perished on the scaffold—others in the dungeons of Ceuta—and others, still more horrible to relate, have been sent to linger out their days amidst the savages of the Phillippine islands!”

The islands have suffered too from another cause, the adoption of the Spanish language as that of the courts of justice, &c. &c. and the consequent neglect of that of the natives amongst the higher classes of Europeans. Hence they are ignorant of the feelings and prejudices of the people they govern, and who look to them for example, or at least for precept; and not a little of the extensive influence of the priesthood may be owing to their intimate knowledge of the language, and the mutual confidence which results from this. The Indian, meanwhile, has not neglected the language of his masters; and as from the Indian writers, who transact all business, every thing is known, it follows, while both mistakenly consider their interests as separate, the natives and creoles have much the advantage. Both despise and detest the Spaniards, the majority of whom, divided into factions of Andaluces, Montaneses, Serviles, and Liberales,123 abuse each other cordially; while the [179]few who know and feel that there are other and higher duties owing from them to the Indian, must look on with regret, or complain to be disregarded or insulted. The disaffected, and those who have nothing to fear and every thing to hope from a popular commotion, do not lose sight of these advantages; and are rapidly spreading doctrines gleaned from the works of Voltaire, Rousseau, Tom Paine; &c. and stimulating them with songs of liberty and equality; as unfit for them as they were for the creoles and slaves of St. Domingo, to whose fate the Phillippines are fast verging, and from which nothing but some extraordinary event can save them.124

The 9th of October, 1820, has given a fatal blow to the power of Spain in this country; for much as has been written and said on the subject, it is questionable whether there exists any country of black men, where the white is not looked upon as an intruder; and “the country belongs to the Indians,” “La tierra es de los Yndios,” is a common remark, even amongst the [180]lower orders. Moral or political injustice seldom fails to recoil on the head of the oppressor; and when the government of Manila allowed an indiscriminate massacre and pillage of European foreigners by the mob, and by their shameful lenity gave a tacit sanction to it, they taught the Indian, that he might with equal impunity attack them. The plunder then obtained is a premium to future violence; and perhaps the day is not far distant, when they may bitterly repent the hour in which they allowed the Indian to feel his physical superiority.

This he is now hourly taught, and the doctrine of “El Pueblo Soberano” [i.e., “the sovereign people”] is hourly echoed in his ears by those who are least capable of managing him when once aroused. “La Constitucion” is made the pretext for every thing subversive of good order and due restraint; the convulsed state of Spain, the imbecile indecision of the present government, and the recent revolution of Mexico (another example to the many already before them), will not a little tend to accelerate the crisis to which, it is to be feared, they are fast approaching; a crisis to which every political body must be subject, who would govern an ignorant people by laws made for an enlightened one, and who forget in their speculations, that though the civil institutions of a people may be changed in a few hours, their moral character cannot; and on it and its influence throughout the circle of social intercourse depends the portion of real freedom which a people can enjoy.



Such was the outline of the state of these islands in 1822. Severe and frequent as the censures are [181]which are passed in the foregoing pages, the writer is not conscious that they are in any instance unjust or exaggerated, or that praise has been withheld wherever it might be due. The unprejudiced, honourable, and well-informed, will, he hopes, think so, the opinion of others is indifferent to him: they will perhaps too believe, that his object has neither been to flatter nor to wound, but, if a sketch like this had originally any object, a hope that when their true state was better known these islands might be better appreciated—perhaps better governed; that a cruelly-abused class of men (the natives) might one day find their condition ameliorated; and lastly, that when this fair and rich portion of the earth shall be visited by men of science, a few general remarks on their state at any given period, however ill drawn up, might be of some use. Who indeed can but reflect with pain, that while the torch of science has blazed in the western hemisphere, from Greenland to the Antarctic, bearing with it light, and life, and hope, and blessings, few are even aware how very much it has yet to illumine in the East!



1 The full title of this book is as follows: Remarks on the Phillippine Islands, and on their capital Manila. 1819 to 1822. By an Englishman. “When a traveller returneth home, let him not leave the countries where he hath travelled altogether behind him.Lord BaconEssays. Calcutta: Printed at the Baptist mission Press, Circular Road; and sold by Messrs. W. Thacker and Co. St. Andrew’s Library. 1828.

Opposite the title-page is a folding map, entitled “Map of the province of Tondo.” It is Spanish, dated 1819; and shows as well portions of the adjacent provinces. The book is dedicated “To Holt Mackenzie, Esq. This Work is respectfully inscribed, by his obedient humble servant, The Author. Calcutta, March, 1828.

Notes signed “Eds.” are supplied by the Editors; the rest are those of the author himself. The original text is reproduced as exactly as possible. 

2 Besides the references already given, see J. Roth’s sketch of the geology of the Philippines, in appendix to Jagor’s Reisen, pp. 333–354.—Eds. 

3 The Bureau of Government Laboratories at Manila published, during 1902–05, a valuable series of bulletins on various topics in botany, ornithology, biology, diseases of man and beast, etc., and another series was published by the Mining Bureau; the former bureau is now replaced by the Bureau of Science.—Eds. 

4 In the environs of Manila, a monument is erected to the memory of …,5 a Spanish naturalist of unwearied industry, and it is said, great talents, sent out by government to examine [76]the Phillippine Islands. After seven years’ incessant labour, he died of a fever, and at his death his manuscripts, which are all written in cyphers, were taken possession of by the government; they are said yet to remain buried in the archives of ‘la Secretaria,’ having never been sent to Europe! 

5 Apparently referring to Antonio Pineda (VOL. L, p. 61); but he died only three years after leaving Spain. In the expedition to which he was attached, he was director of the department of natural sciences; he was accompanied by Louis Née, a Frenchman naturalized in Spain. They visited Uruguay, Patagonia, Chile, Peru, and Nueva España; and in Chile were joined by the Hungarian naturalist, Tadeo Haenke (who, reaching Cádiz after their vessel sailed, was obliged to sail to South America to meet them). From Acapulco they went to Marianas and Filipinas; and journeyed (1791) through Luzón from Sorsogón to Manila. Pineda labored diligently in Luzón, and made large collections; but died at Badoc, in Ilocos, in 1792; his brother Arcadio Pineda, who was first lieutenant of the ship, was charged to put in order the materials collected by Antonio, but many of these were lost on the return journey. Returning to South America, at Callao Haenke and Née parted company; the former again traveled in America, but in the vicissitudes of these journeys much of the material collected by him was lost or spoiled. The residue was classified and described, after his death, by the leading botanists of Europe, and this matter was published in a work entitled Reliquiæ Haenkeane, seu descriptiones et icones plantarum quæ in America meridionali et boreali in insulis Philippinis et Marianis collegit Thaddeus Haenke, Philosophiæ Doctor, Phytographus Regis Hispaniæ (Pragæ, 1825–35). Née went from Concepción, Chile, overland to Montevideo, and thence to Spain; and in September, 1794, he reached Cádiz, with a herbarium of 10,000 plants, of which 4,000 were new ones. These were preserved in the Botanical Gardens at Madrid, with more than 300 drawings. See Ramón Jordana y Morera’s Bosquejo geográfico é historico-natural del archipiélago filipino (Madrid, 1885), pp. 356–358, 361; and José Gogorza y González’s Datos para la fauna filipina (Madrid, 1888), p. 2.—Eds. 

6 The loftiest peak in Mindoro is Mount Halcón, said to be 8,800 feet in height. The most prominent volcano in the archipelago is Mayón, 7,916 feet high, in Albay, Luzon; in Negros is another volcano, called Canlaón, 8,192 feet high. In Panay the highest peak is Madiaás, 7,264 feet; and in Mindanao is the loftiest peak in the entire archipelago, the almost extinct volcano of Apo, which rises to 10,312 feet. See the chapter on “Mountains and rivers,” in Census of Philippines, i, pp. 00–73.—Eds. 

7 Le Gentil says (Voyage, ii, p. 29): “This animal [the hog] is so common there that they even use its fat for sauces, ragouts, and fried articles; for butter is not known in Manila, and there is very little use of milk there. The Manilans doubtless find less difficulty (for in that climate people are very fond of repose) in using pork fat in their food than in rearing and keeping cattle and making butter. This sort of food, joined to the heat and the great humidity of that country, occasions serious dysentery in many persons.” He adds (p. 123): “The venereal disease (or ‘French disease,’ as they call it, I know not why), is very common there [in Manila]; but they do not die from it; the great heat and copious perspiration enable people to live at Manila with this malady, they marry without being frightened at it, and the evil passes by inheritance to their children; it is a sort of heritage with which but few European families are not stained.”—Eds. 

8 Le Gentil thus speaks of the placer-mining practiced by the Indians in Luzon (Voyage, ii, p. 32): “It is true that this sort of life shortens the days of these wretched people; as they are perpetually in the water, they swell, and soon die. Besides that, the friars say that it is their experience that the Indians who lead that sort of life have no inclination to follow the Christian life, and that they give much trouble to the ministers of God who instruct them. Despite that, it is to the friars and to the alcaldes that these Indians sell their gold.”—Eds. 

9 In his “Non-Christian Tribes of Northern Luzon,” Worcester calls attention to the various indefinite modes of using the word “tribe,” among ethnological writers, and proposes (p. 803) the following definition as a means of securing clearness and accuracy therein: “A division of a race composed of an aggregate of individuals of a kind and of a common origin, agreeing among themselves in, and distinguished from their congeners by, physical characteristics, dress, and ornaments; the nature of the communities which they form; peculiarities of house architecture; methods of hunting, fishing, and carrying on agriculture; character and importance of manufactures; practices relative to war and the taking of heads of enemies; arms used in warfare; music and dancing, and marriage and burial customs; but not constituting a political unit subject to the control of any single individual nor necessarily speaking the same dialect.” He adds: “Where different dialects prevail among the members of a single tribe it should be subdivided into dialect groups.” He also says (p. 798): “It was the usage of the Spaniards to designate as a tribe each group of people which had a dialect, more or less peculiar, of its own. Furthermore, the custom which is widespread among the hill people of northern Luzon of shouting out the name of a settlement when they desire to call for one or more persons belonging to it, seems in many instances to have led the Spaniards to adopt settlement names as tribal ones, even when there were no differences of dialect between the peoples thus designated.”—Eds. 

10 The fullest and most authoritative account of the Negritos is, of course, the monograph by W. A. Reed, The Negritos of Zambales, published by the Philippine Ethnological Survey. See also Worcester’s account of them in his “Non-Christian Tribes of Northern Luzon,” in Philippine Journal of Science, October, 1906, pp. 805 et seq.Eds. 

11 See Le Gentil, Voyage aux Indes

12 Is not this, or something resembling it, a custom of the natives of Australasia? 

13 See Herrera and Ant. de Solis, Hist. of Mexico. 

14 The negro of the east appears to have amalgamated with some other family. On the south coasts of Australasia, they resemble in many points the people just described. This continues to be the case as far as Cape Capricorn. To the northward of this, as far as Murray’s Islands in Torres Straits, they are a stout, tall, athletic race of men,15 and as hairy on the face and body as Europeans, with long hair, and without the negro cast of countenance. This race may be traced by intervals to Ternate, Gilolo, &c., where they are called Harraforas;16 but none are found in the Phillippines (unless the Ylocos have some relationship to them). Is not the native of New Ireland and Queen Charlotte’s Islands too of this race?17 The difference between them is most striking. The one are dwarfish negroes, the others almost black Europeans. Both are essentially different from the Malay family, and not only so, but from each other (the native of Amboyna, I think, forms the link between them) and this difference is apparently anatomical, in the shape of the skull, facial angles, &c.

We are as yet in the infancy of our knowledge of the origin of these various families of the human race: like that of languages, it will in all probability remain one more of conjecture than of fact; but it is still a subject of deep interest. I have heard from respectable authority, that the language of Cagayan, the most northern province but one of the island of Luzon, the men of which are tail, stout, olive-coloured, almost beardless, and proverbial for their mildness, peaceable behaviour, and fidelity, so much resembles that of the Sandwich islanders, that some of these at Manila found no difficulty in making the Cagayan servants understand them! The province of Ylocos is the next to this to the north, and forms the north coast of the island. The Ylocos are black, short-bearded men, and noted for their insubordination and dissipated character. 

15 The writer of this memoir has, on the coast of New Holland, between Cape Capricorn and Endeavour Straits, had occasion to know this fact. A party of these savages attacked the captain and supercargo of a vessel in which he was an officer, and they were repulsed only by firearms. The account of them given by the supercargo, and indeed by all the party attacked, uniformly agreed in describing them as the finest made and strongest looking men possible. Their bodies were also very hairy. 

16 The term “Haraforas” is applied to the Subanos of Mindanao by Captain Forrest; from his Voyage, pp. 266, 268, 271, 273, 278–282, we obtain the following interesting and first-hand information about that people:

“The vassals of the Sultan, and of others, who possess great estates, are called Kanakan. Those vassals are sometimes Mahometans, though mostly Haraforas [“who are also called Subanos, or Oran Manubo,” p. 186]. The latter only may be sold with the lands, but cannot be sold off the lands. The Haraforas are more opprest than the former. The Mahometan vassals are bound to accompany their lords, on any sudden expedition; but the Haraforas being in a great measure excused from such attendance, pay yearly certain taxes, which are not expected from the Mahometan vassals. They pay a boiss, or land tax. A Harafora family pays ten battels of paly (rough rice) forty lb. each; three of rice, about sixty lb.; one fowl, one bunch of plantains, thirty roots, called clody, or St. Helena yam, and fifty heads of Indian corn. I give this as one instance of the utmost that is ever paid. Then they must sell fifty battels of paly, equal to two thousand pound weight, for one kangan. So at Dory, or New Guinea, one prong, value half a dollar, or one kangan, given to a Harafora, lays a perpetual tax on him. Those vassals at Magindano have what land they please; and the Mahometans on the sea coast, whether free or kanakan, live mostly by trading with the Haraforas, while their own gardens produce them betel nuts, coco nuts, and greens. They seldom grow any rice, and they discourage as far as they can, the Haraforas from going to Mindano, to sell the produce of their plantations. On the banks of the Pelangy and Tamantakka, the Mahometans grow much rice. The boiss is not always collected in fruits of the earth only. A tax-gatherer, who arrived at Coto Intang, when I was there, gave me the following list of what he had brought from some of Rajah Moodo’s crown lands, being levied on perhaps five hundred families. 2870 battels of paly, of forty lb. each; 490 Spanish dollars; 160 kangans; 6 tayls of gold, equal to 30 l [sterling]; 160 Malons: a cloth made of the plantain tree, three yards long, and one broad. This last mentioned cloth is the usual wear of the country women, made in the form of a Bengal lungy, or Buggess [i.e., Bugis] cloth, being a wide sack without a bottom; and is often used as a currency in the market. The currency in most parts of the country, is the Chinese kangan, coarse cloth, thinly woven, nineteen inches broad, and six yards long; the value at Sooloo is ten dollars for a bundle of twenty-five sealed up; and at Magindano much the same; but at Magindano dollars are scarce. These bundles are called gandangs, rolled up in a cylindrical form. They have also, as a currency, kousongs, a kind of nankeen, dyed black; and kompow, a strong white Chinese linen, made of flax; of which more particularly hereafter. The kangans generally come from Sooloo; so they are got at second hand: for the Spaniards have long hindered Chinese junks, bound from Amoy to Magindano, to pass Samboangan. This is the cause of so little trade at Magindano, no vessels sailing from Indostan thither; and the little trade is confined to a few country Chinese, called Oran Sangly, and a few Soolooans who come hither to buy rice and paly, bringing with them Chinese articles: for the crop of rice at Sooloo can never be depended on. In the bazar, or market, the immediate currency is paly. Ten gantangs of about four pounds each, make a battel; and three battels (a cylindrical measure, thirteen inches and five-tenths high; the same in diameter) about one hundred and twenty pounds of paly, are commonly sold for a kangan. Talking of the value of things here, and at Sooloo, they say, such a house or prow, &c., is worth so many slaves; the old valuation being one slave for thirty kangans. They also specify in their bargains, whether is meant matto (eye) kangan, real kangan, or nominal kangan. The dealing in the nominal, or imaginary kangan, is an ideal barter. When one deals for the real kangans, they must be examined; and the gandangs, or bundles of twenty-five pieces, are not to be trusted, as the dealers will often forge a seal, having first packed up damaged kangans. In this the Chinese here, and at Sooloo, are very expert. The China cash at Magindano, named pousin, have holes as in China. I found them scarce; their price is from one hundred and sixty to one hundred and eighty for a kangan. At Sooloo is coined a cash of base copper, called petis, of which two hundred, down to one hundred and seventy, go for a kangan.”

“On Sooloo are no Haraforas. The Haraforas on Magindano make a strong cloth, not of cotton, but of a kind of flax, very like what the Batta people wear on the coast of Sumatra.” “One day near Tubuan, a Harafora brought down some paddy from the country: I wanted to purchase it; but the head man of the village, a Magindanoer, would not permit him to sell it me. I did not dispute the point; but found afterwards, the poor Harafora had sold about three hundred pounds of paly for a prong, or chopping knife.” “They all seem to be slaves to the Magindano people: for these take what they please, fowls or anything in the house they like best; and if the owners seem angry, threaten to tie them up, and flog them.” “The inhabitants of this country [of the Illanos] have generally their name from the lake [i.e., Lake Lanao] on which they reside. The inlanders dwell chiefly towards the East, where are said to be thirty thousand men, intermixed in many places with the Haraforas, who seem to be the primitives of the island. On the north coast of Magindano, the Spaniards have had great success, in converting to Christianity those Haraforas. Their agreeing in one essential point, the eating of hog’s flesh, may, in a great measure, have paved the way.”

“The Magindano people sell to the Haraforas iron chopping knives, called prongs, cloth, salt, &c., for their rice and other fruits of the earth. For the Haraforas dread going to sea, else they could carry the produce of their lands to a better market. They are much imposed on, and kept under by their Mahometan lords; and are all tributary to the Sultan, or to some Rajah Rajah (noblemen) under him. Their system proves thus the feudal.” “The Haraforas are thinly scattered; and, being all tributary, many together seldom stay long at one place. This cannot be for want of water, pasture, or fertile ground; as with the Tartars on the continent of Asia. On this island, almost every spot is covered either with timber, brushwood, reeds, or grass; and streams are found every where in abundance. Nor can it be to avoid wild beasts; there are none on the island: a good cause why deer, wild horses and other wild cattle are found in so many parts of it. I suspect that the Haraforas are often so opprest that some have wisely got inland, beyond the tax-gatherer’s ken.”

Evidently Forrest and the writer of the Remarks had in mind two different peoples, to whom they applied the term Haraforas. Crawfurd explains this name (Dictionary Ind. Islands, p. 10) as a corruption of Alforas; it is “not a native word at all, nor is it the generic name of any people whatsoever. It is a word of the Portuguese language, apparently derived from the Arabic article al, and the preposition fora, ‘without.’ The Indian Portuguese applied it to all people beyond their own authority, or who were not subdued by them, and consequently to the wild races of the interior. It would seem to be equivalent to the ‘Indios bravos’ of the Spaniards, as applied to the wild and unconquered tribes of America and the Philippines.”—Eds. 

17 And that groupe to which Quiros, Mendana, or Torres gave the name of “Yslas de Gente Hermosa”? [Still thus named on modern charts; see Voyages of Quiros (Hakluyt Society’s publications, London, 1904), pp. xxiv, 217, 424, 431.—Eds. 

18 Our author here confuses the Spanish name “Pintados” (literally, “painted,” referring to their tattooed bodies) with the native name, “Bisayas,” both being indifferently applied to the islands south of Luzon.—Eds. 

19 See Sir William Draper’s dispatches at the siege of Manila. 

20 Was it not by this system (the mita) that the mines and plantations of Mexico were wrought? and Mexico,—that Mexico which the Spaniards of Cortes in the 15th century called New Spain,—became nearly a desert? 

21 A higher and purer praise is due to this gentleman than having written the work alluded to: it is that he acted on its spirit, and first taught the “red man” to know himself as man, and (a far more arduous undertaking), he taught the white man that his prosperity was essentially connected with that of the native. The country in which the foundations of our power were laid on such a basis, should not have been given away like a ministerial snuff-box.22 

22 Java was conquered by England in 1811, but was restored to Holland five years later. During that time the island was governed by Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles (1781–1826), who published a History of Java (London, 1817); he was afterward governor of the English settlements in Sumatra (1818–24), in both these posts ruling with great ability and vigor and an enlightened and liberal mind. Gilbert Elliot, Baron Minto, a noted English statesman, was governor-general of India during 1807–13, and went with Raffles to Java to organize its government.—Eds. 

23 See Descripcion Geografica y Topografica de la Ysla de Luzon, Por Don Yldefonso de Arragon, Parte IV. Prov. de la Pampanga, p. 3, 5, &c. The author is a colonel of engineers. [In 1818–20, he was chief of the topographical bureau at Manila.—Eds.

24 Ibid. 

25Estos (Pueblos) aunque immediatos a las orillas de la mar, estén libres de las invasiones de los Moros; la espesura de las Manglares occulta y hace dificil la entrada, &c.

“These (towns), though close to the sea shore, are free from the invasions of the Moors (pirates); the thickness of the mangroves conceal and render the entrances difficult.” The writer is speaking of towns, of which none are more than 20 miles from Manila!— Descripcion Geog. y Topograf. 

26 The writer was once obliged to arm all his servants against 16 soldiers with their muskets from a neighboring military post. The two parties remained some minutes with their arms levelled at each other, when a parley was begun, which ended the affair without bloodshed. The origin of the quarrel was a dispute at cockfighting between his servants and the soldiers. 

27 Such are, for example, Nuestra Señora de Antipolo, about 20 miles east of Manila, and the Santo Niño (Holy Child) of Zebû: to both of these it is reckoned almost indispensable to make a pilgrimage: the natives of Luzon to the first, which is about 25 miles from Manila; and those of all the Bisayas or Southern Islands to the other. From Antipolo28 alone have been sent in a single year 180,000 dollars as the produce of the masses! And the writer has conversed with pilgrims from the province of Ylocos! In all cases of peril and difficulty, a vow is made to one of these saints, which is seldom left unfulfilled. The crew of a small vessel of men offered 54 dollars for masses at the convent of St. Augustin (I think), on the day of the feast del Santo Niño

28 For detailed account of the shrine at Antipolo, its worship, miracles, etc., see Murillo Velarde’s Hist. de Philipinas, fol. 210v–229v; and in the engraved frontispiece to that work may be seen a representation of the statue of the Virgin of Antipolo (see our VOL. XLIV, opposite titlepage).—Eds. 

29 This word is defined by the Standard Dictionary (New York, 1895) as a Scottish slang word meaning “unlawful sexual intercourse.” It is apparently allied to the obsolete Northumbrian word “houghen-moughen,” meaning “greedy, ravenous”—see Wright’s English Dialect Dictionary, iii (London, 1902), p. 247.—Eds. 

30 Nothing has stamped the character of the Manila Indian with greater atrocity in the eyes of Englishmen, than their frequent appeals to assassination (the knife) in cases of supposed or actual wrongs. How long is it since dirks were laid aside, because useless, in Scotland? When men cannot appeal immediately to a magistrate, they appeal to themselves. Duels too are another kind of appeals of the same sort. 

31 “At Manila, therefore, a doctor [of law] is a species of phenomenon, and many years pass without one of them being seen; in two universities there is no doctor, while in 1767 there was but one competitor for the doctoral of the cathedral. Yet it must be noted that this competitor was a Mexican, and was not born in Manila. Of what use, therefore, are two universities in this city? Would not a single one be more than enough? One who knows Latin is greatly esteemed in Manila, because that language is not common there, in spite of the two universities which I have just mentioned; what is learned in those institutions is very poor, and is only imperfectly understood. When I arrived there, a great many persons asked me if I knew Latin, and when I answered that I knew a little of it they apparently had after that more respect for me. All the ancient prejudices of the schools seem to have abandoned us of Europe only to take refuge at Manila, where certainly they have long remained, for the ancient doctrine is there in too good hands to give place to sound ideas of physics. Don Feliciano Marqués often honestly confessed to me that in Spain they were a hundred years behind France, in the sciences; and that at Manila they were a hundred years behind Spain. One can judge, by that, of the present state of physics at Manila, in the midst of two universities. In that city electricity is known only by name, and the Holy Office of the Inquisition has prohibited experiments in that line. I knew there a Frenchman, a surgeon by profession, a man of parts and of inquiring mind, who was threatened with the Inquisition for having tried to make such experiments; but I think that what really drew upon him this ill-fortune was the experiment of the “little friar.” [This simple experiment in physics was made with a little figure resembling a friar; it had never before been seen in Manila, and everybody ran to look at it and laugh.] “This experiment of the surgeon, who made his little friar dance, and sometimes sink to the bottom of the vial by way of correcting him, drew upon him the displeasure of the entire body of religious with whom Manila swarms; there was talk of the Holy Office, and it was said that the surgeon’s experiment was a case for the Inquisition. The surgeon, therefore—whose only intention in the experiment was to vex the friars who had prevented him from making his experiments in electricity—was compelled to cease his pleasantry, and Manila had to express its detestation of the pleasure that it had taken in seeing the experiment.” [The author was visited by many people at his observatory, who desired to see the sun and the planets through his telescope;] “the women were even more curious than the men about the rare things which I showed them, and which I took pleasure in explaining to them; but not a single religious came to visit my observatory.” (Le Gentil, Voyage, ii, pp. 96, 97.)—Eds. 

32 See El Yndio Agraciado (The aggrieved Indian), a pamphlet published at Manila in 1821, but suppressed by order of government.33 

33 Pardo de Tavera says of this pamphlet, in his Biblioteca Filipina, p. 146: “It attacks one Don M. G., a Philippine Spaniard, who was allowed to propose a plan of studies which was not much to the liking of the Filipino Indians. As appears by the title of this pamphlet, there existed in Manila at that time a publication (probably weekly) called El noticioso Filipino. [See also Tavera’s account of this sheet, at foot of the same page, which he regards as the first periodical which appeared in Manila]. Doubtless the former was the doing of some friar, who took the name of ‘Indian’ in order to express himself more freely.”—Eds. 

34 This distinction should never be lost sight of. The Indian of Manila, from whom strangers generally form their estimate of this people, is so mixed, that a genuine Indian (Malay) family is scarcely to be met with; they are a mixture of Indian, Chinese, Japanese, Mexican (from the troops), seamen of different nations, and Spaniards besides, “Toutes les Capitales se ressemblent, et çe n’est pas d’eux qu’il faut juger les mœurs d’un peuple quelconque.35Rousseau. Let it never be forgotten, too, that while the Indians of Manila, on the 9th of October, 1820, were assassinating every foreigner within their reach, the Indians of the country were saving those in their power at the hazard of their lives! 

35 That is, “All capital cities are alike, and it is not by them that the morals of any people should be judged.”—Eds. 

36 The following statements regarding the native character are made by Ramon Reyes Lala (The Philippine Islands, New York, 1899, pp. 80–87), himself a Filipino: “The first thing that in the native character impresses the traveler is his impassive demeanor and imperturbable bearing. He is a born stoic, a fatalist by nature. This accounts for his coolness in moments of danger, and his intrepid bearing against overwhelming odds. This feature of the Malay character has often been displayed in the conflicts of the race with the Europeans in the East Indies. Under competent leadership the native, though strongly averse to discipline, can be made a splendid soldier. As sailors, too, I do not believe they can be equaled.” “As a result of the stoicism of the native character, he never bewails a misfortune, and has no fear of death.” “Europeans often seem to notice in them what they deem a lack of sympathy for the misfortunes of others; but it is not this so much as resignation to the inevitable.” “The educated native, however, impregnated with the bitter philosophy of the civilized world, is by no means so imperturbable. While more keenly alive to the sufferings of others, he is also more sensitive to his own sorrows.” “Incomprehensible inconsistencies obtain in nearly every native. Students of character may, therefore, study the Filipinos for years, and yet, at last, have no definite impression of their mental or moral status. Of course, those living in the cities are less baffling to the physiognomist and the ethnologist; for endemic peculiarities have been so rubbed off or modified that the racial traits are not obvious. But observe the natives, in their primitive abodes, where civilizing forces have not penetrated! You will then be amazed at the extraordinary mingling and clashing of antithetical characteristics in one and the same person; uncertain as to whether the good or the bad may be manifested. Like the wind, the mood comes and goes, and no one can tell why. I myself, with all the inherited feelings, tastes, and tendencies of my countrymen—modified and transmuted [by his education and long residence in Europe and America], happily—have stood aghast or amused at some hitherto unknown characteristic manifesting itself in an intimate acquaintance; and after I had been for years, too, wholly ignorant of his being so possessed or obsessed. And after that, the same mental or moral squint would be displayed at irregular intervals.” “His indolence is the result of generations of tropical ancestors. Besides, deprived by the Spaniards from all active participation in affairs of the Government, and robbed of the fruits of industry, all incentive to advancement and progress was taken away. He therefore yields with composure to the crushing conditions of his environment, preferring the lazy joys of indolence rather than labor for the benefit of his oppressors. Naturally. Recent events, however, show that, given the stimulant of hope, even the ‘indolent natives’ of the Philippines can achieve and nobly dare. Some Spaniards also have asserted that the Filipinos are naturally disloyal and treacherous, and that their word is not to be depended on. Now, the whole world knows that they have every reason to be disloyal to the Spaniard, who has for centuries so cruelly oppressed them. The devotion to the cause of freedom, however, which has recently made Rizal and hundreds of others martyrs to Spanish cruelty, shows that they also have the stuff that heroes are made of, and that they ran be loyal to an animating principle.” “Though calm, the native is not secretive, but often loquacious. He is naturally curious and inquisitive, but always polite, and respectful withal—especially to his superiors. He is passionate, and, in common with all half-civilized races, is cruel to his foes. The quality of mercy, like the sentiment—as distinguished from the passion—of love, is perhaps more the product of the philosophy of civilization than a natural attribute of the human heart.” “All travelers unite in attributing to the natives extreme family affection. They are very fond of their children; who, as a rule, are respectful and well-behaved. The noisy little hoodlums of European and American cities are utterly unknown. The old are tenderly cared for, and venerated; while in almost every well-to-do household are one or two poor relatives who, while mere hangers-on, are nevertheless made welcome to the table of their host. Indeed, the hospitality of the Filipinos is proverbial. A guest is always welcome, and welcome to the best. As a rule, the people are superstitious and very credulous; but how could they be otherwise? For three hundred years they have been denied even the liberty of investigation; when no light, save the dim glimmer of priestcraft pierced the utter darkness of their lot. Those that have been educated, however, have proved apt converts—only too apt, say the priests and the Spaniards—to the conclusions of science and of modern research. The native is rarely humorous, and seldom witty. He is not easily moved to anger, and when angry does not often show it. When he does, like the Malay of Java, he is prone to lose all control of himself, and, with destructive energy, slays all in his path. This is infrequent, however, but is a contingency that may occur at any time. If a native has been unjustly punished, he will never forget it, and will treasure the memory of his wrong until a good opportunity for revenge presents itself. Like all courageous people, he despises cowardice and pusillanimity. He has, therefore, but little regard for the meek and humble Chinaman, who will pocket an insult rather than avenge himself. He greatly esteems the European, who is possessed of the qualities which he admires, and will follow him into the very jaws of death. He is easily awed by a demonstration of superior force, and is ruled best by mild but firm coercion, based upon justice. He is not often ambitious, save socially, and to make some display, being fond of ceremony and of the pomp and glitter of a procession. He is sober, patient, and always clean. This can be said of few peoples. He easily adjusts himself to new conditions, and will soon make the best of their surroundings. As servants they are honest, obedient, and will do as they are told. It must be said that they enjoy litigation more than is good for them or for the best interests of the colony. There must be some psychological reason for this. It doubtless gives some play to the subtlety of the Oriental mind. It is said that he lacks the sense of initiative, and to some extent this may be true. The recent conduct of Aguinaldo—a full-blooded native—proves, notwithstanding, that he is not wholly deficient in aggressiveness nor in organizing power.”

Lala adds (pp. 157, 158): “I have talked with many rude, untutored natives that, frankly, astonished me with the unwitting revelation of latent poetry, love of imagery, and spiritual longings in their nature.”—Eds. 

37 Such is, although in somewhat varying degree, the condition of half-caste classes everywhere. A vivid picture of their condition in India, which may illustrate that of the mestizos in Filipinas, is found in a book entitled That Eurasian (Chicago, 1905), by “Aleph Bey,” the pseudonym of an American writer who had spent many years in India; he depicts, in terms both vigorous and pathetic, the origin, difficulties, and degraded condition of the Eurasians (or half-castes) there, and the oppression and cruel treatment which they encounter from the dominant white class.—Eds. 

38 “To be born in Spain was enough to secure one marked tokens of respect; but this advantage was not transmitted. The children who first saw the light in that other world no longer bear the name of chapetons, which honored their fathers; they become simply creóles.” (Raynal, Etablissemens et commerce des Européens, ii, p. 290.)—Eds. 

39 I am perhaps not quite correct here. [Mas states (Informe, ii, “Administration of Justice,” p. 1), that the limit for civil suits was 100 pesos fuertes.—Eds.

40 It will be understood that these sureties have their share in the advantages, that is plunder, which the Alcalde derives from the government. This often amounts to 20, 30, or even 50,000 dollars in three or four years—though at the time of their leaving Manila, they are in debt to a large amount. It is but just to observe, that there are some few honorable exceptions. 

41 This is a typographical error; the reference to Comyn work is on p. 13 of Remarks.Eds. 

42 Even from Spanish writers: see Zuniga’s History, Morillo [i.e., Murillo Velarde], and others. Le Gentil (who names his informants, men of the first respectability), La Peyrouse, &c. Many public papers of the government bear witness to these abuses.

El Alcalde de aqui Señor! (said an old Indian to the writer at Zebú), le quitará los dientes de la boca a S. Md.” “The Alcaldé here, Sir!—He’ll take the teeth out of your worship’s mouth.” This was not too strong an expression. 

43 They are well aware of the extent of their influence, and even at times speak of it. “Si aqui manda su tropa el Rey, se vayan los Indios al monte, pero si yo cerro las puertas de la Iglesia los tengo todos a mis pies en veinte quatro horas.” “If the king sends troops here, the Indians will retire to the mountains and forests. But if I shut the church doors, I shall have them all at my feet in twenty-four hours,” was the remark of an intelligent “frayle” to the writer. 

44 Le Gentil says (Voyage, ii, p. 2): “Every order of religious has, then, taken possession of these provinces, which they have, so to say, shared among themselves. In some sort, they command therein, and they are more kings than the king himself. They have been so shrewd as to learn the dialects of the various peoples among whom they reside, and not to teach the Castilian language to them; thus the religious are absolute masters over the minds of the Indians in these islands.”—Eds. 

45 Those who can see only inquisitors in Catholic bishops will be a little incredulous of one of them checking an attempt to convert a Protestant! This happened to the writer, who found himself one evening seated between an Indian clerigo and the bishop of Zebû, an aged and most worthy prelate. The Indian father, to show his zeal for the faith, attacked me on the subject of religion with the usual arguments of ignorant friars, till I was on the point of quitting the room to avoid answering. “My son,” said the old prelate to the Indian—“we are here to convert the Indians, not to annoy the strangers who may visit us. I will send this gentleman some books, and I doubt not they will duly prepare his mind to see the errors of the Protestant church, and then we may hope for success with him!” 

46Yo hé llorado de ansias de ver à un Europeo!” “How often has the desire of seeing an European made me weep!” was the pathetic remark of a most worthy minister to the writer of these remarks.—This man had been 27 years on one small island! 

47 “Insanity is the fashionable disease [at Manila], and a great many persons are attacked by it; but it prevails more generally among the women and the religious—the latter most of all, and they are very subject to it. The life which they lead contributes greatly to this: to be always shut up, in a climate so hot, eating scanty and poor food, and much given to study; perhaps also there is some grief at finding themselves banished and shut in so far away [from Spain]. All these causes make the brain grow hot, and madness follows. Nearly all the religious who go to the Philippines arrive there while young …. As for the women, their natural infirmity may, at a certain age, conduce to insanity, with which a great many are stricken.” (Le Gentil, Voyage, ii, pp. 130, 131.)—Eds. 

48 They have already conducted them to scenes of the last indecency and even bloodshed. See Martini’s Hist.

The Inquisition has been but little felt in the Philippines of late years. A tribunal existed, but it was merely nominal, and held only “in terrorem.” It was not wanted as a political engine; and as a religious one, there was little use for it amongst a people who will believe any thing and every thing. The Grand Inquisitor, during the last 25 years, is a man universally beloved!—the Padre Coro. 

49 This is, according to Montero y Vidal (Archipiélago filipino, p. 72), the name applied by Linnæus to the Caryota onusta of Blanco, generally called cabonegro by the Spaniards (see VOL. XVIII, p. 177); but the list of fiber plants in Official Handbook of Philippines applies to that tree (p. 332) the name Caryota urens L. The natives also make various sorts of wine and brandy from the sap of the cocoanut palm (Cocos nucifera); see Delgado’s Historia general, pp. 645–648, 664.—Eds. 

50 There is an instance (I think in the province of Pampanga) of a negro tribe, who annually pay their tribute—but upon the express condition that no missionaries are to be sent! 

51Bulas.” Surely this most absurd of all impositions on the credulity of a people, should be abolished, or at least imposed in a less objectionable manner. The “Bula de Cruzada” (originally a contribution to the wars against the Infidels), for which is granted permission to eat meat and eggs in Lent, or benefits to the souls in purgatory (“Bula de Difuntos”), from the Pope is an article of revenue to the king of Spain. His Most Catholic Majesty farms it to one of his subjects, who rather than lose a rial of his bargain, will sell them to Chinese, Turks, or Hindoos, if they are fools enough to buy them, as the Chinese have been known to do for the souls of their ancestors!—Quere: What has become of the original intention of these precious documents? of which a modern Spanish author has remarked, “Que es el papel mas caro y mas malo que se vende.” It is the worst and dearest paper that is sold, (Gallardo Dicc. Critico Burlesco). It is, however, an indispensable condition to the performance of many of the offices of religion to have the last published bull. See Manila Almanack. 

52 In 1810, the total of receipts was 1,466,610 dollars. 

53 Such assertions demand some evidence in support of them. A very recent case has occurred, wherein the colonel of a militia regiment (of Chinese descent), having some dispute with a French gentleman, and high words taking place, called up the guard stationed at his door, it is supposed to flog him! The French gentleman having procured some weapon, kept the whole guard at bay, together with their gallant colonel. Muskets were levelled at him, and he probably would have been assassinated, but for the interference of some of the family, and his own firmness! Complaint was made of this, but no notice was taken of it, nor was the gallant colonel’s conduct thought at all incorrect. On the contrary it was very generally applauded! 

54 Large boats undecked, pulling from 20 to 30 oars; they carry a four or six pounder and five or six swivels; they are fine boats and sail fast. The gun-boats carry a long 24 or 32 pounder, and six or eight swivels; and including marines, carry from 80 to 100 men. 

55 For recent information on this subject, see chapter on agriculture (revised by Frank Lamson-Scribner, chief of Bureau of Agriculture), in Official Handbook of Philippines, pp. 99–126; and Census of Philippines, iv, pp. 11–394, with full description of chief products of the islands, methods of cultivation, lists of fruits, vegetables, and fiber plants, and detailed statistics of production, lands, etc., as well as of domestic animals of all kinds.—Eds. 

56 The fish principally caught is one called Dalag (Blennius?)57 This fish, common I believe to many parts of India, presents some phenomena well worth the attention of naturalists. In these extensive plains, only a few pools remain in the dry season; and after the rains, such multitudes of them are found, that they are caught with baskets only. They weigh from one to two pounds, and are from one to two feet in length; they are found in the rice fields, when these have been overflowed a few weeks, and strange to relate, in the graves and vaults of churches when in damp situations, but with little or no water near them; this fact is related on respectable authority. The fish, though not delicate, is good, and forms a valuable article of food for the poor. 

57 Montero y Vidal mentions this fish (Archipiélago filipino, p. 107), as belonging to the genus Ophicephalus; it is “abundant in the rivers, lakes, and pools.” See also Official Handbook of Philippines, pp. 151, 152.—Eds. 

58 They, very unaccountably, neglected any steps to procure the martin from Bengal or Cochin China.59 This might, however, have arisen from an idea that, as in the Isle of France, the martins might have become as great a nuisance as the locusts; but surely the introduction of some species of hawk would have obviated this. 

59 Montero y Vidal says (Archipiélago filipino, p. 113) that the family of Orthoptera, “leaf-eaters in their adult stage, are the most fearful scourge for agriculture,” perhaps the worst of these plagues being the locust (Oedipoda manilensis; Spanish, langosta); “the Indians use great nets to catch them, because not only the government pays a bounty for a certain quantity of these destructive insects which the natives may present, but they preserve the insects and use them for food.” He also states (p. 96) that a species of grackle (Gracula) was imported from China (in the Hist. de Filipinas, ii, p. 294, he mentions in the same connection martins [pájaros martines]) to exterminate this pest; but does not mention the time or the result of this experiment.—Eds. 

60 See VOL. XLVIII, p. 96, note 37.—Eds. 

61 This is the Viverra Musanga.62 See Horsfield’s Zoology of Java. 

62 Montero y Vidal states (Archipiélago filipino, pp. 86, 87) that two species of carnivores, Paradoxurus philippinensis and P. musanga, are dreaded by the coffee-planters; these creatures “spend the day in holes dug in the ground, and go out at night to hunt their game.” He mentions, besides these, two species of civets, both of the genus Viverra. Delgado says (p. 875) that he has never seen the miró (Paradoxurus) except in the island of Leyte.—Eds. 

63 Eight rials are a Spanish dollar. 

64 The following are the common land measures in use at Manila:

La Brasa de tierra is 8 feet 1.6–10 English, (from a new government measure); 10,000 of these, or a square of 100 each way, is a Quinion.

10 Balitans is a Quinion
10 Loanes is a Balitan

Hence the Quinion contains 661511 16–144ths sq. ft. or 73501 2–9ths sq. yds.,65 which, taking the Bengal bigha at 14400 sq. ft., gives about 46 bigahs, or 15 acres English.

Their dry measure is as follows:

8 Chupas, 1 Ganta.—25 Gantas, 1 Caban.

I could not procure a sight of the standard. A mean measurement of several new Gantas and Cabans (for they are all clumsily made, though sold at a government office) gave as follows:

The Caban, 4633 cubic inches English.

The Ganta, 186,878 ditto.

The mean of these two (for the first would give 185.72 to the Ganta) is thus about 186 cub. inches to a Ganta, and 4650 to the Caban, or 2 bushels and 1–6th Winchester measure.66 

65 The quiñón = 2.79495 hectares = 6.89 acres. (Official Handbook of Philippines, p. 294; Jagor’s Reisen, p. xv.) Jagor has balístas for balitans, and Mallat has baletas.—Eds. 

66 Since January 1, 1862, the caban of Manila (established January 1, 1860) is regarded as the standard measure for all the provinces. It measures exactly 75 liters, or, in cubical form, 422 mm., inside measure, or 5,990.96 Spanish cubic inches. (The caban of 1859 contained 80.00919 liters.) A caban of rice weighs 128 to 137 Spanish pounds = 59 to 63 kilograms.” (Jagor’s Reisen, p. xv.)—Eds. 

67 The table here referred to is as follows:

“Estimate of the cost and annual product of one cabalita of land planted with sugar-cane in the province of Pampanga; to wit:

p. r. gr.
For plowing the said land 6 times 1 4
For breaking the clumps with the balsa 3 times 6
For the surrounding fence and rattan 3 p. 5 r., and three days’ work 3 r. 9 gr. 4 9
For 4,000 cane-shoots for planting, 1 p.; tracing the lines and making the holes, 5 r.; two days’ work at planting, 2 r. 6 gr. 1 7 6
For fencing twice more, and cutting out the grass 6
For 14 moulds, at 1½ r. 2 5
For 1½ tareas [= amount of mill’s capacity at one time], each of 14 loaves [pilones] of sugar, the amount usually obtained, at 8 p. a tarea 12
Total cost 23 5 3
Selling price of a loaf of sugar, averaging those of the three grades 2 6 6
Deduct cost of each loaf, at the rate of 1 6 1
Net product, equivalent to 90 per cent profit 1 3 2”

Comyn gives similar tables for the production of indigo and rice, estimating the net profit thereon at 57 and 60 per cent respectively. He adds, on the margin of the sheet: “In favorable years the profit of the grower is wont to increase in an extraordinary manner. The 4,000 shoots of sugar-cane, for instance, yield him 3 tareas, or 28 loaves of sugar, in place of the 14 loaves which were figured in the comparative estimate preceding; the cavan of seed yields 80 and even 100 cavans of rice in the hull, in place of the 35 computed; and he obtains a quintal of indigo from 15, or even from 10, balsadas, instead of 25 being necessary for furnishing the said product. And if the grower is fairly well-to-do, so that he can send his produce to the general market, and sell it to the foreign merchants or ship-captains who come for these products, he can obtain incomparably more for them than by delivering them upon the ground to the middlemen. At Manila I have seen indigo from La Laguna sold at the rate of 130 pesos a quintal for extra fine grade, and at 100 pesos for the usual quality; sugar, at 4p. 5r. a loaf; and palay (or rice in the hull) at 3 pesos; but I have preferred to limit myself to a low rate in the selling price which I have assigned to the aforesaid products in the preceding estimates, in order to demonstrate more thoroughly the advantages which agriculture offers in Filipinas, and at the same time to conform to practical experience in the formation of estimates of this sort.” Cf. similar estimates by Mallat (Philippines, ii, pp. 256–281.—Eds. 

68 Pilones are large bell-shaped moulds, from 2 to 2½ feet high, and 1½ broad. 

69 Some of their voyages are most curious. One or more of the principal men in a village, sometimes 15 or 20 of them, join to build a small “parao.” On this they embark with their harvest in sugar, cacao, wax, &c., sell it at Manila, and return to their village; there the accounts are settled, and the return cargo distributed; after which a feast is held, and the Santo duly thanked for the good markets of this year, and asked for better next. All parties then visit the vessel, which they pull to pieces! every man carrying a piece home with him—to take care of till next season, when they are all sewed together for another trip. 

70 At the present time there are six varieties of sugar-cane in Filipinas; of these, the purple is considered the best, and is more generally cultivated in the Visayas; the white and the green are almost exclusively restricted to some provinces of Luzon and the rural districts near Manila; the other kinds are cultivated sparingly and in few places. The sugar manufactured in the islands is “made in pilones (which includes nearly all from Luzon), and the granulated, which is the kind that has been adopted in the Visayan islands and in some Luzon plantations.” The pilon weighs a quintal; the granulated is put up in sacks (known as bayones, containing two and a half arrobas of sugar. (José R. de Luzuriaga, in Census of Philippines, iv, pp. 26, 27).—Eds. 

71 These last, by a royal Cedula (ordonnance), are only admitted into the island as cultivators. This, like almost every ordonnance of His Catholic Majesty, relative to this country, is disregarded; and the Chinese are almost all shopkeepers, or petty merchants. Were an impartial account of the administration of these islands to be presented to the king of Spain, it might begin thus: “Sire,—Not one of your Majesty’s orders are executed in your kingdom of the Philippines.”72 

72 Cf. similar statements by Viana (letter to Carlos III) and Anda (Memorial), in VOL. L.Eds. 

73 This case actually occurred to one of the most respectable military officers in the Spanish service, now a captain in the Queen’s Regiment, whose name is Don M—— de O——. This gentleman, a man of high spirit, and one of the few Spaniards in Manila who are an ornament to their profession, bearing the king’s commission, and in pursuit of the robbers, suddenly fell in with a noted chief of them, when accompanied only by a piquet of infantry. The robber knew him, and with a gallantry worthy of a better cause, defied him to single combat! With true chivalric spirit, the challenge was instantly accepted; and orders given to the piquet not to interfere on pain of their lives. A desperate conflict ensued, in which the gallant Spaniard was at length victorious, and the robber’s head was sent through the country in triumph. Shall the sequel be told? When he returned to Manila, with the blessing of every honest native for having cleared that part of the country of robbers, a subject of prosecution was found in this service by those numerous enemies which every honest man has in a country like this, and on some frivolous pretext of having (unavoidably) fired into a cottage, and killed or wounded some innocent persons. He could not stoop to flatter or bribe; and it was with the utmost difficulty, and rather by the exertions of his friends than by his own, that after suffering a long series of vexations, he was saved from ruin! 

74 Manufactured, I think, from the Urtica nevea of Linn.75 

75 See our VOL. XXII, p. 279. In regard to cultivation and preparation of abacá, see Jagor’s Reisen, pp. 245–256; Mallat, Philippines, pp. 279, 280; Census of Phil., iv, pp. 14–24.—Eds. 

76 Mimosa saponaria?77 

77 This plant (variously known to the natives as gogong, gogo, bayogo, and balogo) is a leguminous climbing plant, Entada scandens (Official Handbook of Philippines, pp. 367, 384). Blanco (Flora, pp. 247, 248) praises its detergent qualities, especially for bathing purposes, as even superior to the soap of Europe; and says that it is also used medicinally for asthma, and as a purgative, and that the Indians place dry pieces of its wood in their jars of cacao-beans to keep away worms. He states that it is also named Mimosa scandens by some writers.—Eds. 

78 Tíndalo is the native name of the Afzelia (or Eperua) rhomboidea, a leguminous tree highly valued for its durable and beautiful timber. Mangachapuy, Vatica (or Dipterocarpus) mangachapoi, furnishes a timber especially used for shipbuilding and other work which must resist sun and rain. (Official Handbook, pp. 352, 357; Blanco, Flora, pp. 260, 261, 281, 313.)—Eds. 

79 It is said by the Indians. 

80 Perhaps Boa hortulana?81 

81 See our VOL. XII, p. 259; and XXIX, p. 301. Dahon-palay is Dryimus nasutus (Montero y Vidal, Archipiélago filipino, pp. 103, 104). See also Official Handbook, p. 149; and Worcester’s Philippine Islands, p. 514.—Eds. 

82 Many years ago, a complete set of forging machinery was sent out on speculation; it was sold as old iron, for no one of course would speculate in mines, when they could with so much more ease obtain 100 per cent. for their capital in the trade to Acapulco. 

83 That is, “to reduce them to a desert, in order to assure her empire over them.”—Eds. 

84 “By a royal decree of February 2, 1800, the residence of foreigners in Filipinas was forbidden. This mandate was renewed by royal decrees of September 3, 1807, and July 31, 1816.” (Montero y Vidal, Hist. de Filipinas, ii, p. 360.)—Eds. 

85 Perhaps much of this may be traced to the avaricious spirit of the early adventurers, and to the cruelties of the Buccaneers; and thus what might have been only a local, became from habit a national principle; though “soy Cristiano viejo” [i.e., “I am an old-time Christian”], was always the surest passport amongst an intolerant people, with whom “filosofo” is yet an epithet of reproach. 

86 Something of this is more or less visible in the colonial policy of almost all countries; but that those have been the most flourishing who have acted on the broad and liberal principle of “Ubi dives, ibi patria” [i.e., “where wealth is, there is my country”] (a humiliating but correct estimate, not only of the bulk of colonial adventurers, but of mankind in general), will scarcely be questioned. The Havannah is a splendid example. In 1780, strangers were rigorously prohibited, or at least loaded with restrictions; an enormous smuggling trade was carried on, and the island did not pay its own expenses. In 1820, when the prohibitory system had been long annihilated, and strangers allowed free intercourse and establishment, its trade had increased a hundred-fold; and not only did it suffice for its own, much more expensive establishments; but, both directly and indirectly, contributed large sums to the mother country, though at the first epoch, the profits on colonial capital were at least 30 per cent. more than at the last. 

87 “We have been told, that we must not sit under the shade of our own vines and olives! that we must not pluck the fruits from the trees which our fathers have planted!—and why—lest the merchants of Cadiz should be deprived of their profits in supplying us with wine and oil.”—From a Chilian manifesto, published soon after the declaration of independence. 

88 A valuable study of “The Spanish colonial system” is furnished by the chapter under that heading in Wilhelm Roscher’s Kolonien, Kolonial-politik und Auswanderung (Leipzig, 1885), an English translation of which is published by Prof. E. G. Bourne (New York, 1904), with some additional annotations. See also “The colonial kingdom of Spain,” in Helmolt’s History of the World (New York, 1902), which is praised by Bourne as an excellent and scholarly study by Konrad Häbler; but unfortunately the American edition of that work does not name the author of the above section. Bourne also treats this subject in a chapter of his Spain in America (New York, 1904), pp. 220–242, and at pp. 355, 356, gives a helpful list of authorities thereon.—Eds. 

89 “Ecclesiastical foundations and obras pías were, it may be said, innumerable. From the richest city to the smallest village, from one extreme of the Peninsula to the other, and even to the farthest boundaries which the monarchy reached in the period of its greatest grandeur, the acts of Christian piety are seen in various foundations. These include not only hermitages, confraternities, memorials, charitable foundations, and chaplaincies,—which by themselves alone made a total of enormous wealth—but more pretentious establishments, as convents, cathedrals, parish churches, and colleges; and any person will be surprised at those which were supported by some towns which in their present condition are reduced in population and poor. Larruga in his memoirs states that Toledo had 25 parish churches and its cathedral, 39 convents, 14 hospitals, and four colleges, in all, 83 foundations. Salamanca had more; Cuenca had 31, Avila 31, Almagro 17, and so with the other cities of Castilla.” Among these pious gifts were “the exchanges of Barcelona, Sevilla, and Valencia, the colleges of Salamanca, that of Santa Cruz of Valladolid,” and many cathedrals and convents. (Arias y Miranda, Examen crítico-histórico, p. 139.)—Eds. 

90 At one of them (I believe that of Santa Clara), the sculls of the seven founders are placed on the table at which the trustees meet!—but this, it is said, does not exempt the funds from being misapplied. 

91 It was not uncommon for a person worth ten thousand dollars to borrow 40 more from the public funds. Of these about 25 or 30,000 were shipped, and the remainder kept at home. If the ship was lost, the accounts were settled; and if she came back, the interest was always repaid,—which of course entitled them to borrow again, till a fortunate loss made them independent. And where every body did this, no one thought it incorrect. 

92 It is not here meant to controvert the principle of this kind of commerce being at times the most lucrative that can be carried on; but to remark, that had it not been for the strange system of trading just described, the restrictive system, and the monopoly of the Phillippine Company, the activity and ingenuity of private traders would have discovered other branches of commerce, and with them, that their own produce might suffice to pay for the piece goods of Bengal. As an instance, the English and every other nation of Europe have for a century carried betel-nut to China, but from the Phillippines not a nut was exported—it was a royal monopoly! and the merchants and growers were thus deprived of about half a million of dollars annually, that the king might pocket 30,000. Many other instances might be cited. 

93 The boletas “long did duty as paper money, passing from hand to hand.” (Lala, Philippine Islands, p. 177.)—Eds. 

94Aunque a Mexico llevan diablos cornudos siempre ganan dinero” (Though they should carry horned devils to Mexico, they would make money by them), was the gruff observation of an old soldier to the writer. The trade could not have been better characterized; for the very topmen and cabin servants crammed their departments full of goods of all kinds; and it was a very common thing to heave to, to clear the decks in the Bay of Manila. The “Timoneles” (quarter-masters) had always servants! 

95 The revolt of Mexico from Spain began in 1810, but independence was not accomplished until 1821. The first constitution of the republic of Mexico was proclaimed on October 4, 1824.—Eds. 

96 A ship was dispatched from Manila in 1821, and another freighted: this last as an English ship; both were on account of the Company. 

97 The first constitution of Spain was promulgated on March 19, 1812, during the Napoleonic invasion of that country. Fernando VII had been displaced on the throne by Joseph Bonaparte for a time, but the latter fled from Madrid, at Wellington’s approach with an English army, and Fernando (who had been imprisoned in France since 1808) was restored to Spain as its king, returning in March, 1814. After long-continued struggles with the Liberal party, Fernando restored absolutism in that country in 1823, with the aid of a French army; and the Constitution was overthrown until after Fernando’s death in 1833.—Eds. 

98 To account for the enormous difference, it will be sufficient to observe, that the Acapulco ships alone smuggle from 1–4th to 1–3d of their cargo (treasure) on shore—that opium which is prohibited, is smuggled to a considerable amount, as is also treasure, particularly gold, to avoid paying the import duties. With respect to the exports, the Chinese alone smuggle nearly a million annually, and no notice is taken in the account of treasure exported to Bengal in bars. 

99 Comyn briefly sketches this domestic commerce (pp. 43–45), but in vague and indefinite terms, save for the following paragraph: “Besides the traffic founded on the ordinary consumption, and the necessity of being furnished with goods both domestic and foreign in order to supply the fairs known by the name of tianguis, which are held weekly in almost all the villages, there is also a species of traffic peculiar to the rich Indians and Sangley mestizos (who are an industrious class, and own the greater part of the ready money). This consists in buying up beforehand the harvests of indigo, sugar, rice, etc., with the aim of afterward dictating the prices when they resell those products to him who buys at second hand.”—Eds. 

100 Large, heavy swords, which some of them wield with great dexterity. 

101 They have some few brigs and schooners, but the number of these is not much more than 20. 

102 “The Hong merchants (Chinese) were twelve in number, licensed by government as intermediate agents in trade, between foreign merchants and the Chinese people, becoming responsible for the good conduct of the former, and, at the same time, securing to the Emperor the payment of all maritime duties.” (Allen, Opium Trade, p. 45.)—Eds. 

103 Dr. Nathan Allen, in a pamphlet entitled The Opium Trade (Lowell, Mass., 1853), presents a history of this traffic, describes its results in both China and India, and protests against its continuance. He states that opium, originally a native of Persia, spread thence into Turkey and India, being cultivated more extensively in the latter country than anywhere else in the world. In 1767 the British East India Company formed the plan of sending opium from Bengal to China, where but little of this drug had previously been sold; but they had little success in this until 1794, when they began a traffic which lasted some twenty-five years at the ports of Whampoa and Macao. In 1821, the opium merchants abandoned these places, on account of difficulties encountered in their trade, and centered it at Lintin Island, in the bay at the entrance to Canton River, where it rapidly increased. “Here might be seen large armed vessels reposing, throughout the year, at anchor, constituting a floating depot of storehouses, for receiving the opium in large quantities from the ships bringing it from India, and dealing it out in chests and cases to the Chinese junks, to be retailed at various points on shore. The Merope, Capt. Parkyns, in 1821, was the first ship that commenced the system of delivering opium at different cities along the coast of China, and from that time, the trade increased with wonderful rapidity. Eligible places also on the east and north-east coast of China were selected to station receiving vessels, to which the Chinese might easily have access, and become participators in the trade.” Allen cites many contemporary and high authorities. Among these, James Holman says, in 1830 (Travels in China, p. 162), that the opium boats “are but seldom interfered with, nor are they likely to be, so long as the Free Traders can afford to pay the mandarins so much better for not fighting, than the government will for doing their duty. The use of opium has become so universal among the people of China, that the laws which render it penal, and the proclamations which send forth their daily fulminations against its continuance, have not the slightest effect in checking the prevalence of so general a habit. Smoking houses abound in Canton; and the inhabitants of every class who can furnish themselves with the means to obtain the pipe, are seldom without this article of general luxury. It is a propensity that has seized upon all ranks and classes, and is generally on the increase.” From the year 1800, the Chinese government tried to stop this traffic, strictly prohibiting the importation of opium; but foreign merchants paid no attention to this, and forced the trade on the Chinese people. In 1839, a Chinese official destroyed, by command of the emperor, over 20,000 chests (worth $12,000,000) of the drug at Canton; this led to a war with England, commonly known as “the Opium War.” The resulting treaty of peace compelled the Chinese to open five ports to British trade and residence, to cede the island of Hong-kong to Great Britain—at which place the opium trade then centered; and in 1845 the British authorities licensed twenty shops to sell opium at retail—and to pay heavy indemnities not only to the English government and the merchants, but for the opium destroyed, which had been legally confiscated by the emperor as contraband goods. The Chinese commissioners objected, but were threatened with renewed hostilities if they persisted, and they had to yield. During the past year negotiations looking to a cessation of the opium traffic have been carried on between Great Britain and China. The following also shows the recent growth of the drug in China. “As for the gums from the Indias, the Chinese physicians and surgeons make hardly any use of them. I do not think that in an entire year there is used in Pekin a half-livre of opium (which they call Yapien); its place is supplied by using the white poppy.” (Father Parennin, in a letter dated September 20, 1740; Lettres édifiantes, ed. 1811, t. xxii, p. 274.)—Eds. 

104 One of the great drawbacks on the profits of the voyages from Europe since 1814 has been, that no light goods of value were to be obtained. An American, in 1816, remained 16 months to obtain two crops of indigo, and bought all to be got in the market. She made an excellent voyage, even with this heavy expense. 

105 At this point in the book (namely, facing p. 82) is a plan of Manila entitled “Plano de la ciudad de Manila, capital de las Yslas Filipinas,” which shows the city and its suburbs; and a second illustration showing, first, “View of Manila from the plain of Bagumbayan,” and second, “View of Manila from the sea.” The plan of Manila is from a Spanish source.—Eds. 

106 Generally, but incorrectly written, “Manilla.” 

107 Under this title is included not only the Phillippines from the Bashees and Babuyanes to Mindanao, but also from Palawan on the west to the Carolinas on the east. 

108 It has no ditch on this side. 

109 A covert from an enemy’s fire, but not intended for defense with guns; composed of gabions or bags filled with earth, or of earth heaped up.—Eds. 

110 Le Gentil states (Voyage, ii, pp. 103, 104) that Arandía was hated by the friars because he desired to demolish two churches outside the walls of Manila; these were so solid, and equipped with towers, and so near the walls, that they were a source of great danger to the city if they should fall into an enemy’s hands. “I have been assured that the friars raised the cry of heresy against M. Arandía, and that they talked of nothing less than excommunicating him; but his death stopped all that. This zealous governor actually died in 1760, before he had effected his project; but his death was not regarded as natural.” When the English appeared before Manila, Arandía’s loss was regretted, when it was too late. The English demolished the aforesaid churches and their towers, for their own safety.—Eds. 

111 That is, elevated so as to fire over the top of a parapet.—Eds. 

112 This place was afterward occupied (1824?) by “a statue of Carlos IV, in bronze, a true work of art, cast in Manila. It was erected in recognition of his having ordered the conveyance [to the islands] of vaccine virus, transmitted from arm to arm, for which purpose exclusively he arranged for the departure of a ship from Méjico, which reached Manila on April 15, 1805.” (Montero y Vidal, Archipiélago filipino, p. 301.) The same writer says (Hist. de Filipinas, ii, p. 388): “The benefits produced by vaccination among the natives, always so harassed by that pest [of smallpox], were evident,” and Folgueras made strenuous efforts to secure its propagation throughout the country. He also gave orders that the dead should not be interred within the churches, a measure which drew upon him hostilities and annoyances from the religious.” The Plaza Mayor, where the above statue stands, is now called Plaza McKinley.—Eds. 

113 And yet the ignorant natives ascribed the pest of cholera, which caused such ravages in Manila in 1820, to the poisoning of their wells by foreigners. A French physician, Dr. Charles L. Benoit, who arrived at Manila at that time, and spent four years there, states, in his Observacións sobre el cólera morbo espasmodico (Madrid, 1832) that in this belief the Indians, usually so humble and religious, then committed innumerable crimes. See account of their massacre of foreigners, pp. 39–45, ante.—Eds. 

114 The brethren devote themselves to the care of the sick, and perform their duties most honourably and zealously; so much so, that the refectory is often supplied with little but rice for their own dinners. The other orders are richly endowed, and fare sumptuously—but they are more a-la-mode. 

115 These plates are obtained from the shell of the Placuna placenta, a mollusk; they are generally used in place of window-glass, and by their partial opacity modify the effects of the sun’s heat.—Eds. 

116 This would appear a vulgar interpretation of a popular custom; but from this charge the writer will be exonerated, when it is known, that should a person yawn, he devoutly makes the sign of the cross before his mouth, while it continues open, to—keep the devil from him! Ex pede elephantem [i.e., “By the foot-print, one recognizes the elephant”]. 

117 “When the terrible epidemic which Manila had suffered came to an end, the municipal council caused a fine cemetery to be constructed in the village of San Fernando de Dilao, commonly called Paco.” (Montero y Vidal, Historia de Filipinas, ii, p. 457.)—Eds. 

118 La Peyrouse, when speaking of the public flagellants in the Passion week, did not, I believe, do so; but though superstitious enough, this practice is no longer continued in the present day. 

119 “Thank God! I am of a noble family!”—And if they are told, “Well, but if you have nothing to eat?” “Me hago frayle,” “Well, I can be a friar,” is the answer. 

120 Le Gentil says (Voyage, ii, pp. 116, 117) that the Jesuits decided that the use of chocolate was admissible on fast days, consequently these were no mortification to most of the people.—Eds. 

121 “This is no country for an honest man”—a remark quoted, too, I think, by Le Gentil. 

122 Cervantes, whose keen but justly merited satire on many of the failings of his countrymen, is only equalled by his beautiful eulogies on many of their excellencies, has aptly described the composition of their colonies in his day.

“To the Indies—the refuge and resource of despairing Spaniards—asylum of rebels—protector of homicides—receptacle of gamblers (called by some knowing ones)—common decoy for women of loose characters—the deceiver of many, and remedy of few.”—Novela del Zeloso Estnemeno [i.e., “The jealous Estremaduran”]. 

123 Andaluces: natives of Andalusia province. Montañeses: [179]appellation of the dwellers in the hill-country of Santander province, Spain. Serviles (literally “those who are servile or fawning”): a political epithet applied to the Monarchists or Absolutists. Liberales: the Liberals in politics, much as that term is used at the present time. Le Gentil describes (Voyage, ii, p. 109) the clannishness and provincialism of the Spaniards in Manila.—Eds. 

124 This is not an isolated opinion; and in corroboration, it will be sufficient to mention, that upwards of ¾ths of all the disposable Spanish property in the country has been sent out of it. This fact is a volume in itself. Since this was written, two serious commotions have taken place, in the latter of which the conspirators obtained possession of the city, which was regained by storming.125 

125 Reference is here made to the rebellion incited by Novales in 1823; see account of it on pp. 47–48, ante.—Eds. 



Opinion regarding the causes which antagonize the security and progress of the Filipinas Islands

Most Excellent Sir:

The Filipinas Islands, on account of their great extent, their advantageous location in the center of the commercial world of Asia, their considerable population, and the fertility of their soil—which is capable of yielding all the products which are grown between the two tropics—require from his Majesty’s paternal government a carefully planned system of measures which shall strengthen their peace and internal security, and at the same time advance their agriculture, industry, and commerce to that high degree to which they have been destined by Providence.

As I am charged by order of the king our sovereign to furnish information regarding the measures which can contribute to objects so important, it will be my plan to point out (but with that circumspection which is so necessary in matters of colonial policy and administration) the causes which today are antagonizing both the internal and external security of those islands and their successful administration—civil, economic, and commercial—proposing in regard to each one of these the correctives which have been impressed upon me by my experience as consulting [183]attorney [asesor] and judge in all the public affairs of justice, army and navy, the government, revenues, and commerce; and my own observations under popular revolutions, changes in the system of government, and other vicissitudes and critical positions in which that colony has been seen during the long period of my residence therein.



Of the present composition of the divisions of the army

The army of the Filipinas Islands, in view of the class of men of whom it now consists, offers very little (if any) moral confidence for their resisting the force of the revolutions which may be formed in the very bosom of the islands. It is officered, in great part, by Spaniards of the country, and by some Americans and mestizos; and the disposition, tendencies, and education of the latter class are (with very rare exceptions) absolutely different from those of the other and European officers; consequently, there exists between the two classes, from the outset, a certain insuperable disunion of feeling, between not only individuals but the two classes. The officer who is a native of the country has all the lax characteristics which the climate induces. He lives in exclusive intercourse with his neighbors, and separated from the Europeans. He likes the military career solely for the conveniences connected with his office; he is incapable of a noble emulation, and limits himself in [184]the service to the outside and very inexact fulfilment of the necessary obligations of his position; and when the cause of the legitimate government exacts on his part sacrifices incompatible with his own interests or those of his neighbors, he disowns and absolutely abandons his duties. For these reasons the officers born in that country have never come to merit the confidence of their chiefs; and if from the rank of cadets they have been promoted to that of captain, it has been more from the peremptory necessity of completing the military corps and protecting the service than on account of their fitness, military spirit, or appreciation of the confidence and honor which the king bestows on them. Such sentiments they can never possess until they undergo a rigid training moral and political, in the colleges of España. This mental divergence, and the natural contrariety of their temperaments, so mischievous in the ordinary service of military bodies, are much more lamentable in the crisis of a revolution. The officers of the country, being nearer to the Indian soldiers in their customs and language, make common cause with the latter, and seduce and lead them into their own faction, with a marvelous readiness; this I have repeatedly seen in the mutinies of military bodies which have occurred in the Americas, and especially in that of the troops in the kingdom of Guadalajara in the year ’21, and in that at Manila in the year ’23.

The army of Filipinas also contains a considerable number of Indian sergeants and corporals, and this is another of the causes from which have already arisen, and always will arise, seditions in the corps. Whoever has observed the natural disposition of the Filipino Indian will recognize two things: First, [185]that he always imitates and obeys only that which is directly commanded, explained, and taught to him; and, second, that while he is kept in his simple condition of laborer, artisan, or soldier he is entirely void of ambition. The Indian soldier serves very contentedly during the eight years of his term, and returns to his own land without aspiring to anything; but when he is placed in command, of any degree whatever, he is filled with pride, and vehemently desires to be at the head [serlo todo], without changing, for all that, his station as an Indian. [The writer states that even these non-commissioned officers were formerly always Spaniards;1] the appointment of Indians to these posts has been only in these last years, in which a system of commerce which entirely separated those islands from their center of government has rendered impossible the despatch of reënforcements, so necessary to those islands. From that very time may be noted much laxity in the military service and discipline; and I have witnessed the insurrections and disorders which never were known in former days. In the popular uprisings in the suburbs of Manila, at the end of 1820,2 the detachments commanded by Indian corporals who were sent out to pacify the villages took such part in the lawlessness that they even attacked houses, and it was by their gunshots that many foreigners were butchered. In the military insurrection of June 3, [186]1823, parties of troops commanded by only one officer (a Philippine Spaniard), without any previous plan or any combination, and simply by appearing before the barracks of their regiment and offering to make captains of the Indian sergeants, immediately persuaded them to revolt; and, directing the soldiers at their own pleasure, they committed the lamentable and horrible acts of that day, which ought to be kept well in mind. [This should be a warning against allowing the Indians any place of command, especially as they have more influence with the common soldiers than do the superior officers; and all military posts of command should be filled with competent and trained Spaniards. The writer urges the following measures of reform: (1) that a sufficient number of Spanish officers to fill all the posts of sergeant and corporal, and a surplus number to fill vacancies as they occur, shall be sent to Filipinas annually; (2) the class of cadets should be suppressed, who “have always been (with a few exceptions) very unsatisfactory officers; for, belonging to very poor and obscure families, and receiving no kind of education, in a country which so depraves and corrupts a youth, they demoralize the soldiers, and cause the military career to be held there in slight esteem;” (3) in future, no other officers except the heads of corps should be sent there from the Peninsula, so as to make room for promoting the lower officers, and to avoid demoralizing the young Spaniards; (4) that the Indian and mestizo sergeants or corporals who, after fulfilling their twelve years of all service, have to be replaced by Spaniards, shall be given places in the custom-house or revenue service, or in the monopoly shops, so as to recompense them for [187]losing their posts.] In this manner the Indian soldier—who is docile, and always imitates the desires and opinions of his immediate superiors—will receive more disinterested treatment than he has hitherto had; he will make common cause with his leaders, in critical cases of popular revolutions; and the army will remain loyal and incorrupt in its opinions, always ready for its duty, and united in action and interests.

Of the enlargement of the army of the islands

The colonies are governed and maintained more by opinion, justice and example than by force of arms. When opinion in them becomes corrupted up to the point of forming great conspiracies, the offensive action of the army produces no other effect than to hasten the ruin of the legitimate government. [In the Filipinas Islands, the persuasions and example of the ministers of religion, and the measures taken by the civil authorities, have been usually sufficient to put down an uprising; but it is not well to rely too much on military force in such cases, since such action causes rankling resentment and unites the discontented in the common effort to throw off the yoke. It is impossible, in such a climate, to employ only Spaniards in the army, since they cannot endure it, and the expense of such an army would also be too great a burden on the royal treasury.] The army of Filipinas, then, ought not to have a greater force than is sufficient to defend and maintain, in any event, a post or locality that is impregnable, which can serve as a protection and defense to the government, its interests and employees, and the families of Spanish blood. A center of strength, ordered and [188]disciplined, of this sort (the locality of which I will mention later), will be inaccessible not only to three millions of inhabitants who now people the islands, but to thirty millions who might inhabit them; and this idea alone in the mind of the Filipino Indian is the most efficacious for disconcerting, in its origin or progress, any plan for conspiring or taking by surprise. [In such a point of vantage, the government can use measures of policy,] which in revolutions are more effective than arms for reëstablishing order, without leaving in the minds of the people, as war does, deep feelings of resentment at being repressed; and the partial revolutions in the provinces will be always broken—as thus far have been those of Ilocos, Cebú, Bataan, and others—by the zeal and sagacity of the European religious and coöperation of the civil employees of the king. In such a crisis, the principle is, to disunite sagaciously the opinions and feelings of the people; and repression by force only unites them. [If the military forces, the forts, and the navy be augmented, the only results will be to demoralize the army, make unnecessary display of the government’s power, teach the Indians the art of war (which as few of them as possible ought to know), and impose unendurable burdens on the treasury. Plans of this sort ought to be postponed until the country can bear such burdens. The present permanent veteran force of the islands seems to Bernaldez sufficient for the above purpose;] it consists of four battalions of infantry, each containing approximately one thousand men; of a cavalry corps, recently increased to three squadrons; and a brigade of artillery, with a force of four hundred forty-four men, including a light-armed company. The following [189]may also be regarded as permanent troops: a company, called the Pampanga, annexed to the service of the engineer corps; and three brigades called the “pirate marines” [marina corsaria], who have been in service twenty years. [The system of rewards is costly and useless. The soldier receives enough pay to live comfortably, in a country where living is so cheap; “it is equivalent for an Indian, and even for a Spaniard, to three times the same amount in Europa.” The rewards given to the soldiers ought to be reduced in such measure as the circumstances of the colony demand, “taking for a basis the fact that with four hard dollars a month any inferior employee can maintain himself and all his family comfortably in the provinces, and that all beyond that is extravagance.” The Pampanga company has no organization; it ought to be placed on a military basis, with European officers, and ranked as a company of pioneers, when it would be very useful in the service. The militia troops of the islands have been neglected, although they are (especially the pirate marines) so important in checking the Moro pirates. The commanders are “men of no force, arbitrarily chosen by the governor there, from the class of merchants and private citizens of Manila, who possess only honorary titles, without any military instruction or love for the military career.” The militia forces do not cost the government much, but they are of very little use. Bernaldez thinks that the pirate marines ought to be regarded as a part of the regular army, with the same pay, and with European officers. The cavalry corps of Luzon is untrained, and would be of little use in an invasion of the country; it ought to be replaced by light and irregular cavalry, and supplemented [190]by a small body of veterans. Two squadrons in the corps of dragoons of Luzon would be sufficient to preserve order in Manila, and the third ought to be abolished as unnecessary.]

Of the artillery and its dependent branches

[The artillery corps is in better condition than any other part of the military force of the islands; it is under better discipline, and has always been under European officers. The Indians are in great terror of the cannon. When in the tumult of 1820 Folgueras ordered three pieces to be planted at various points outside the walls, the natives implored him to take the cannon away, as the inhabitants were so terrified that they did not dare to cross the streets; and in the disturbances of 1809 in Ilocos, “only one four-libra cannon, fired by a revenue-clerk, the ball from which hit a church-tower, was sufficient to curb and disconcert more than 10,000 insurgents.” To this corps might be added (but as footmen) the company which should be disbanded in the cavalry, since in so rough and broken a country as Luzon horsemen are of little use. The artillery in Manila is of wretched quality: almost all of it was cast there, at various periods, and by unskilled founders; not only the guns but their carriages are irregular, clumsy, unreliable, and are difficult to manage; and for these very reasons the foundry there has been abolished, but since that time no cannon save a small siege battery has been sent thither from Europe. The artillery cast in Manila is sufficiently good to provide for the defense of the provinces against the Moros; but measures should be taken to provide for the better defense of that city. The working of iron and the making of [191]artillery are almost entirely in the hands of the Chinese of Manila,3 and the Indians therefore are unskilled in this industry; some skilled masters should be sent over from Spain to teach them and oversee the manufacture of iron. The country abounds in rich mines of iron, but these have been barely scratched and then abandoned; only some common utensils are made there, and other iron articles are sold to the people at high prices by foreigners, who carry great sums of money out of the country. “The iron of Manila has been examined in the artillery workshops, and has been found to be very soft and fibrous.” Attempts have been made by the Spanish government to utilize the mines and introduce machinery into their operation; but the officials entrusted with these enterprises have been ineffective, caring only to draw their salaries. Bernaldez urges the encouragement of private capital to undertake these works, with concessions, privileges, and protection which shall be adequate to enlist their energies; this would lead to the development of the natural riches of the islands, the population would be increased by skilled artisans and mechanics, and the great increase thus obtained in wealth of the country would likewise [192]bring incalculable benefits to the royal treasury—not only in revenues from the increased commerce and manufactures, but in the great saving in the expenses of furnishing the army with weapons, made in the country at so much less cost than before. In the arsenal reform is needed; all its workmen except the gunsmiths should be replaced gradually by Indians, who are so skilful and work for less wages than the Spaniards; and the gunsmiths should have a regular military organization. Better provision should also be made for a supply of gunpowder. At the beginning of the century, a powder factory was erected, which cost eighty thousand hard dollars, although it was made of only bamboo and nipa; with this a large supply of powder was made, but its quality was poor, on account of the impurities in the saltpetre, which they had to obtain from India. There has been talk of building another factory (the former one being apparently no longer in existence); it is likely to be as costly an enterprise, because the lack of a strong current in the rivers “has rendered impracticable the installation of hydraulic machinery.” The Spanish government ought to take measures to provide the large amount of powder needed for the use of the forts, army, navy, and revenue service. Bernaldez advises that this be done by making contracts (with either Spaniards or foreigners), by which they can secure powder of better quality and at lower prices; and besides this they ought to send immediately to the islands a scientist (whose salary ought to be paid from the funds of the Economic Society and the consulate of commerce)—“whose mission shall be not only to establish in the capital a chair of mineralogy (which is so necessary for exploring [195]the hitherto unknown interior of the islands), but himself to make researches in the provinces of the archipelago for places where the saltpetre can be found—which he will find, without fail.” Then gunpowder can be made in the islands, and they will be independent in the means for their defense.]

Plan showing outer works of Manila, according to the plan approved by his Majesty in 1784–1785, drawn by the engineer Tomás Sanz

Plan showing outer works of Manila, according to the plan approved by his Majesty in 1784–1785, drawn by the engineer Tomás Sanz

[From original MS. map (in colors), in Archivo general de Indias, Sevilla]

Of the forts of Manila and Cavite

No location like that of Manila could have been selected by the conquistadors of the island of Luzon for fortifying themselves and founding the capital of an infant colony. [Its position is described, with mention of its earlier fortifications; but these were only suitable for the defense of its inhabitants against piratical attacks. Its present condition is a dangerous one, for its fortifications are unable to withstand a siege by European troops; it has no bomb-proof magazine, and hostile batteries across the Pasig River could easily reduce the city to ashes. Manila is not suitable for a military center, and the efforts of the government ought to be bent toward the fortification of Cavite, which would render that place a first-class fortress; its advantages for this are enumerated in detail, and the measures which should be taken to render it impregnable.] The feeble fortifications of Manila and its citadel may be preserved for the present, in order to shelter the government and the property of the Spaniards from a sedition; but in case of war and the landing of an enemy let them be abandoned and destroyed, in order to proceed for safety to the impregnable point of Cavite. In this manner will be laid the foundation for the perpetual security of the [Spanish] government in those islands, and for their preservation against all enemies, whether within or without. [196]

Of the piracies of the Moros

Longer tolerance of the piratical raids by the Moros is another cause which in time must compromise our secure possession of the islands, through the plundering of their maritime villages and the captivity of their inhabitants, and the stoppage of the commerce and the coasting trade. Much more is this true because some ports of the islands, which are in the possession of those pirates, are already frequented by foreign vessels, which provide the pirates with military supplies and firearms; and it is to be feared that later the foreigners will furnish them with plans, vessels, leaders, and other aids, like those which they have furnished to the disaffected peoples in the Americas, to wage steady war on the Spanish government. [The Spanish colony has carried on defensive warfare with the Moros ever since the conquest, but has gained no permanent advantage therein, while the enemy have increased in numbers and strength, inflicting ravages on the southern provinces that are “continually greater and more scandalous.” The Spaniards have spent enormous sums in forts, vessels, and other defenses; but with little effect, on account of the immense extent of the coasts of Filipinas and the great number of uninhabited places where the pirates can hide themselves from pursuit.] Their vessels, called pancos, are of extraordinary swiftness. The Moros make these of planks lashed together with rattans, without nails or any [other] ligature. Their masts are three bamboos, their rigging a few pieces of rattan or the bark of trees, their sails are certain petates, or mats, which they call saguran; and their provisions are reduced to the flour made from a tree, called yoro [i.e., sago] and dried [197]shellfish. Nearly all their pancos have two banks of oars, and two men for each oar. And with this slight though warlike equipment, with their harpoons, javelins, campilans, and arrows (in handling which weapons they are very dextrous), and with their swarming crews—composed of their slaves, who row under the lash; and of a multitude of pirates, who thus make their living, and traffic in their booty—they attack, among many, with the odds on their side, surround, and jump aboard, any Christian vessel which cannot defend itself on account of a small crew or the inaccurate firing of its cannon. [If they are caught in some bay by the Spanish who pursue them, they abandon their pancos, hide in the mountains, where they find enough to live on, and, as soon as the Spaniards depart, the pirates easily construct new boats and resume their raids. The pirate marine with the forts, troops, and cannon supported by the Spaniards make a heavy burden of expense on the treasury and on the people; and the amount thus spent in half a dozen years is enough to equip a strong naval expedition which could humble the insolence of the pirates. In view of this, and of the importance of Joló—which is the headquarters of the Moro pirates and of their government, and the general market for the Christian slaves and property which they carry away—Bernaldez advocates the immediate conquest of that island, and its repopulation from the more thickly settled parts of the northern islands. This can easily be done. Thousands of families whose members have been enslaved, especially in Bohol, are ready to join such an expedition, if leaders and provisions are supplied to them; and there are a multitude of skilled inter-island pilots—mestizos [198]who are efficient and rich—who would act as leaders for the sake of their own profit and reward in such an enterprise. For ships they could use the government armed vessels, and the multitude of boats which ply among the islands; and sufficient rewards could be furnished to the soldiers in the distribution of the conquered lands and of the plunder which they would obtain. By this plan, the Moro piracies could be suppressed, and the islands thus gain peace from those fierce enemies.]

Of the large Indian villages

Although the laws of the Indias endeavor to establish firmly the peace and good government, both temporal and spiritual, of the villages by placing limits to their extent and the number of their residents, the inattention of the governors of Filipinas in regard to this so important subject, on the one hand, and on the other the interested motives of the parish curas and the ministers of the doctrinas, have given rise to the abuse of the villages of excessive size which are now found established in Filipinas. These, as they cannot be properly governed by their respective local authorities, maintain within themselves a source of internal civil discord, and from time to time they have broken out in disturbances which have placed the islands in a very critical situation.

If the reports of their population be examined, it will be found that in a great number of villages it does not fall below 10,000, 11,000, or 12,000 souls; and it is impossible that so many can be well directed spiritually by the one parish cura alone which each village has, or in secular matters by only one gobernadorcillo or alcalde. In this class of towns the most [199]notable are the following: Tondo, with 13,424 souls; Binondoc, 22,570; Tambobo, 21,378; Pasig, 14,465; Malolos, 19,655; Vigan, 17,320; Pavay, 14,840; Lavag [Laoag], 25,242; Bacarra, 13,064; Balayan, 18,631; Taal, 23,526; Banan, 17,438; Batangas, 19,566; Cabatuan, 17,359; Xaro, 14,911. In these populations which do not conform to the rule there has always been recognized more or less instability, for the class of the plebeians, or caylianes, is immense, and out of proportion to that of the timauas, or nobles; and likewise because the unarmed authority of a gobernadorcillo must necessarily be vacillating, at the mercy of that great mass of people, who are easily set in motion by a seditious person, a few drunkards, or the superstitious tale of some old man.

The successive revolts of various towns in the province of Ilocos in the years 1810, 1812, and 1816 had no other source. The cause of this last uprising was decided by me, in my official character as fiscal of the royal Audiencia of Manila. In my reply I explained the origin of those repeated insurrections, analyzed the degree of perverseness which progressively in each of them had been revealed in the purpose of the conspirators, and deduced the necessity of dividing the province of Ilocos into two, to the end that its large towns should each have a ruler closer at hand who might keep them in check. The Audiencia made a report, with my opinion as fiscal thereon to the king our sovereign; and, his Majesty having deigned to command that immediately the said province should be divided into two, it has been maintained on that footing, up to the present time, in the greatest order and tranquillity.

[Even more surprising is the neglect of the governors [200]to enforce the law that no houses shall be erected close to the castles and fortresses.] Within cannon-shot of the walls of Manila, and even no farther away than the breadth of the river, one hundred thousand souls—Indians, mestizos, and Chinese—have been allowed to establish themselves; a people of foreign origin, in great part, without passports, classification, settled occupation, or any other requisite of a well-ordered social condition, and whose formidable number is threatening Manila with an inevitable blow. The sudden movements of that great mob of people, ignorant and swayed by blind passion, reached the point of approaching close to the defenses of the city, in the year of 1820, even before this was known to the government and the military council (which for this object had been called together, and of which I was a member)—notwithstanding that the object of their revenge was in the outer suburbs, and that their aim was not, at least for the time, directed against the city. [These facts ought to make the authorities of the colony realize that no other considerations ought to interfere with their prime obligation, which is to preserve peace and order in the towns and maintain the military posts in security. Bernaldez recommends that new regulations be formed regarding the settlements of the islands; that no town be allowed to contain over five thousand souls and one thousand houses (except the capitals of the provinces, which might have ten thousand souls and two thousand houses); that the large towns be divided into villages on the above basis, which should be kept separate from one another; and that in the suburbs of Manila there should be more rigorous police control of the people. The [201]Indians there should be classified by occupations, to each being appointed a chief or leader who should be responsible for the conduct of those in his class; the use of all dangerous weapons should be forbidden; passports should be required for all persons coming from the provinces; and vigilant watch should be kept over the occupations and mode of life of every family.]

Of the titles to landed property belonging to the Indians and the villages

The lack of clear and exact laws for properly authenticating the documents regarding the ownership of the lands of the Indians, and the uncertain and unlimited possession which the villages have of lands under the pretext, of their being communal, have been and always will be in Filipinas the origin of a multitude of ruinous lawsuits and contentions—sometimes those of Indians and villages among themselves, sometimes between these and the Spanish and mestizo proprietors. The Indians, as a rule, have no title of ownership in the lands which they possess, and if any one has such it is a private document, signed by other Indians—who with the greatest readiness deny, change, and forge their signatures—or it will be simply a writing signed by the alcalde-mayor, a copy of which, if it remains in the court, will disappear or be mutilated, with equal readiness, by the Indian clerks of the alcalde, in whose charge the archives are—if indeed these are not entirely destroyed in the frequent fires which occur in the villages. The most common method which the Indians of the villages have for proving their territorial property is by tradition, and the depositions of witnesses; [202]and with that powerful weapon they undertake and maintain the most contentious lawsuits, aided by the fiscals of the Audiencia—who often forget that their office of defenders of the Indians is bona fide, and for the sake and protection of the natives in the tribunals to which the laws commend them. But any person who may have exercised the duties of magistrate for any time in Filipinas will know that in the decisions of judges there is nothing more discredited than the evidence presented by Indian and mestizo witnesses, who are not restrained from perjury by either an intimate acquaintance with the obligations of religion or by sentiments of conscience, honor, and reputation. It is very common to see, in court cases, that witnesses of that sort will swear, and then contradict their own testimony, according as the witnesses [are affected by] either their own interests or the influence of the litigant who presents them.

These causes, besides rendering the lawsuits of this kind eternal, have very frequently produced scandalous disobedience of the villagers to the enactments of the Audiencia of the islands, and uprisings of armed men in order to prevent effectually even the judicial possession of the crown lands which had been sold, with all the formalities of the laws, by the government there; and, finally, they withhold the Spanish families and persons of wealth from purchasing rural establishments in order to undertake on a large scale the cultivation of the products of the country, which is perhaps the only means of promoting the agriculture of the islands.

It is therefore expedient, in order to cut short these noisy controversies, which have so mischievous [203]consequences for the internal peace of the communities in the islands, that his Majesty be pleased to command that the government there shall oblige all the villages and private land-owners in them to have authenticated before the respective alcaldes-mayor of the provinces the documents for their ownership, both private and communal. Strict obligation should be imposed on them to surround their lands with trees—achiote,4 mulberry, cotton, cinnamon, cacao—under penalty of losing their title to the land. The documents should be registered in the tribunals of the respective alcaldes, who at the end of every year should send to the capital the original books of record, in order that these may be kept there securely in the archives, for which provision shall be made by the government, not admitting in the courts or declaring lawful any other titles of ownership to lands than those which are supported by those necessary conditions.

Of the ecclesiastical orders which are conferred on Indians and mestizos

The irregular procedure of the reverend archbishops and bishops of the islands in conferring ecclesiastical orders on the Indians and mestizos there, will be in that colony, as it has already been in America, one of the causes which most incite revolutions. The Indians receive through the priesthood a standing which they cannot worthily sustain, because they never lay aside the affections, passions, and usages of Indians. Educated by the religious, they [204]afterward come to be their decided enemies; they divide with the religious the opinions of the villagers, who finally, even though they know the deficient morals of the native priests, always respect the sacred functions which these exercise. The least political evil which the latter occasion is [through] their neglect of their obligations as parish priests, the irregularity of their mode of life, and their carelessness in everything pertaining to divine worship. The inhabitants of the villages administered by Indian curas are very different from those of the religious from Europa, whose people are distinguished by their simplicity, docility, and religious training. He who knows the active and leading part played by this class of persons in accomplishing the independence of America will not be surprised that in the establishment of the constitution in Filipinas Indian curas have almost all been the directors of the elections in their villages, the electors, and the deputies in Cortes and for the province—in all these functions distinguishing themselves by their officiousness, and their pretensions against the legitimate government of the islands.

This class of persons, dominating the consciences of the ignorant and unfortunate, can easily drag them into error. As simple farmers and artisans, they would have been useful to their families and to the government; but mistakenly raised to the dignity of priests, other interests now move them, and they form a commonwealth apart in the safe retreat of the provinces. A consideration of justice wrongly understood by the prelates of the islands, and a vehement desire in the Indian or mestizo heads of families to ennoble these by placing their sons in the priesthood, [205]have caused there an excessive ordination of Indians—which I cannot avoid characterizing as such, since, besides the many clerics who are actually administering villages, there is a considerable surplus of others who are scattered through the provinces. These evils were foreseen in the laws of the Indias (ley iv, tit. vii, lib. i), which cautions and exhorts the reverend prelates of the Indias not to ordain so many clerics as they were doing; but this has not sufficed, and it is necessary that the government, recognizing the unfortunate experience that it has already had with this abuse, should take the most efficacious measures for the purpose of limiting the authority of the prelates in Filipinas, in conferring ecclesiastical orders on Indians and mestizos, strictly to the number of clerics which the religious orders of those islands agree upon and propose as necessary to have for their coadjutors, and for Indian villages not now occupied, or which in the future the religious shall fail to occupy—ordering the governor of Filipinas to secure, by mild and discreet means, that the vacant curacies of clerics be conferred on European religious.

Of the European religious in Filipinas

The lack of European religious in the Filipinas Islands for filling at least four-fifths of their curacies is incompatible with the permanent preservation of that colony. It can be safely asserted that the government of his Majesty has in this class of ministers the most powerful force for maintaining that possession in attachment to his sovereignty. Their virtuous and unworldly mode of life; their absolute disinterestedness in regard to temporal matters, which [206]is a marvelous contrast to the greed and ambition of the European trader, the mestizo, and the Chinese; their extraordinary sacrifices in living apart from the society of their equals for nineteen, twenty, and [even] thirty years in those almost uninhabited islands, which are unprovided with the sort of nourishment suitable to their estate; their discretion and patience in correcting and teaching the Indians; their resignation in all kinds of adversity: everything, in short, contributes to make the inhabitants of that land regard them as supernatural beings, and in the light of this conception the fathers exercise over the Indians a moral force more powerful than even that of the government. The Indians live in entire moral separation from the Spaniards; they have their own laws of tradition, their own opinions and customs, entirely unknown to any one who is ignorant of their language or has not continual intercourse with them. The European religious are the only persons in the confidence of the government who by favor of these circumstances, and with a practical and intimate knowledge of the nature and inclinations of the natives there, can find a way into their hearts, incline their wills to what is right, enlighten them, and keep them peaceful and submissive; and without this larger armies would be of no avail.

[The religious are the only persons who understand the condition of their respective villages, and the alcaldes-mayor are usually indolent and inefficient, relying on native interpreters, and caring little for aught save their own profit; they depend on the religious in all cases of difficulty, and the higher authorities are jealous of this superiority of the religious. The government ought to maintain as many [207]religious as possible in the islands, and give them as much political authority as is consistent with their ministry; five hundred of them should be sent there, and the alcaldes-mayor should be obliged to consult every month with their respective curas on the best means of promoting the interests of the people, and the central government can then act on reports of these conferences.]

On the settlement of banished and vagabond foreigners in the islands

[The entrance of these persons causes trouble among the people of the islands: the Indians are easily influenced by white men, especially those who teach them to live in more freedom and insubordination to authority; foreigners of this sort are almost always of lax morals and dangerous political opinions, which are even more dangerous to “the Spaniards of the country, who, although more enlightened than the Indians, are more susceptible to such corruption.” The foreigner thus residing in the islands, “usually from the dregs of other nations,” makes light of all the institutions there, and tries to set the people against the mother country; and three times recently has occurred] the scandal, unheard-of in that colony, of foreigners who, abusing the innocence of the country, have, being already married in their own country, again married Philippine Spanish girls, leaving them abandoned and dishonored. Others, who feigned to be learned physicians and agriculturists, have deceived and defrauded proprietors in the islands. Others have clandestinely introduced impious, revolutionary, and obscene books printed in the Spanish language, but pirated in [208]France, with which they have caused atrocious injury in the morals of families there. In fine, the settlement of foreigners in the islands would not be expedient, even for the sake of the advantages which their industry and arts would produce there; for works carried on always with foreign capital, on the account of foreigners, and by the agency of foreigners, would leave to the country very little benefit as compared to that from labor employed there by Spanish capital, and on the account and for the benefit of Spaniards. If we desire to preserve intact in Filipinas the religious ideas and the pure morals of our ancestors, and due submission to the government of his Majesty, it is necessary to keep the people away from every point of contact with foreigners. In China, Japan, and other nations, the revolutionary spirit has not been able to penetrate, because the laws of those kingdoms keep the gates closed to all strangers. In a colony still in its infancy in customs and enlightenment—which, like a school of education, needs to have for models men of sound morals—it has been very absurd to allow to remain and become citizens therein men who have served a term of exile, and polisones5 or vagabonds, sometimes followed by officers of justice from the Peninsula; and that the Indian people should see (as so many times I have seen) that this sort of men succeeded in obtaining positions as corporals, revenue officials, and even militia captains, solely from the circumstance of their being white men. It is necessary always to remove from the colonies this sort of people, who on account of their principles and their inclinations must be [209]enemies of order and of government, permitting therein the settlement only of respectable Spanish artisans and merchants, whose upright conduct may serve as an example to that neophyte people, while at the same time they make fortunes for themselves. But even this point needs careful study, and in regard to it I will present the following reflections.

Of the residence of European Spaniards in Filipinas

By a necessary and inevitable effect of certain causes, physical and moral, which would take too long to explain here, the Spanish race in the colonies—or the descendants of Europeans, and mestizos of these, born and reared there—have from their birth political sentiments which are entirely opposite to those of their ancestors and other Europeans. They regard the Indian as an entirely passive being, the European as a foreigner, and the land as exclusively their own. The educational institutions which thus far have been founded in the colonies, with the object of uniting their inhabitants, by means of enlightening them, under the same principles of religion, morals, and politics, have not been able to uproot those ideas; on the other hand, recent events in the Americas have proved that the men who had most education and acquaintance with the sciences were the party leaders [corifeos] of revolution and independence. It ought to be regarded as an incontestable truth that as soon as the Spanish race in Filipinas reaches a greater number than that of the Europeans, and with this increase acquires a certain degree of moral force, a war for independence will be declared; and according to this idea the educational institutions, when there is [210]not sincerity in the minds of the persons and in the laws that aim at encouraging this class of population in the colonies, have a tendency hostile to the preservation of the royal government in them. This class of Spanish families is, for another reason, very unfortunate in Filipinas, and may be regarded as condemned to perpetual slothfulness and misery. They cannot devote themselves to agriculture, because in that burning climate only the Indian resists labor so hard; nor to handicrafts, because the wages which the Indian and the Sangley mestizo alike earn, which is sufficient to meet their simple needs, is insufficient to pay for another sort of food and clothing for the Spaniards. For these same reasons, they cannot occupy themselves in the coasting trade; nor, finally, in the commerce of the islands on a large scale, for lack of sufficient capital, since by inheritance is divided among all the sons the wealth which their European parents left to them; and the practice of law is there a career to which resort is very unfortunate. All these causes, added to the lassitude which the climate inspires, maintain that class of people in such a condition of idleness and poverty, especially the women, that it has been necessary to establish in the capital alone six seminaries and beaterios in which to shelter and educate Spanish girls; and that in the ordinance regarding the Acapulco galleon his Majesty should grant to the Spanish widows of merchants the special favor of a pension or widow’s usufruct on the boletas of that vessel, their only means of making a living.

[Bernaldez declares that these European Spaniards, “there abandoned, as it were, to the mercy of charity, or to vices,” are not only useless but dangerous [211]to the country; that among them revolutions are born; that it is for the best interests of España to retain her population at home, and, while furnishing means for Spaniards to enrich themselves in the colonies or their trade, to attract to the mother country all possible wealth and capital, not allowing her children to remain abroad after acquiring wealth; and, finally, “to remove from the colonies all cause of insurrection, than which there is none greater and more terrible than the propagation [therein] of the Spanish race.” Moreover, the Europeans settled in the colonies “have too much influence, through their exclusive wealth and connections, for weakening governmental action there; and care nothing for any political changes except as they can find therein opportunity for speculations” (on which he instances the action of European Spaniards in Mexico in Iturbide’s short reign, and in other events of the revolution there). “The Filipinas Islands need, to maintain them in tranquillity, nothing more than a stable system of administration, civil and spiritual, by means of religious, and an army trained and commanded by competent European leaders, officers, sergeants, and corporals, with the necessary number of civil officials.” The creole inhabitants should be diminished as much as possible, all Spaniards being required to return with their families to their own country; and “aid given to destitute widows and orphans of Spaniards who die in Filipinas would be better employed in paying for their removal to Europa.” This matter should be considered in the residencia of every governor. Convicts and exiles should no longer be sent to the islands. No foreigner should be allowed to marry there except on condition [212]of leaving the country with his wife. No European adventurer or idler should be allowed to remain in the islands unless he proffer sufficient security for his good conduct and occupation; he may then remain not longer than ten years; otherwise, he should be at once sent back whence he came. Every ship should carry back to España as many Spaniards as it brought to the islands; and European Spaniards should not be allowed to remain in Filipinas more than ten years, after which they should be compelled to return with their families to España.]

Of the residencias

[It is highly desirable that public officials should undergo strict residencia, and that regulations be made for these, which are adapted to the special needs of Filipinas. This is especially true of the alcaldes-mayor, who, as they have permission to trade, are more tempted to evade or infringe the laws; and many persons are appointed to that office who “lack all the qualifications necessary for obtaining any public office whatever.” Unfortunately, since the royal decree of August 24, 1799, no alcalde has been or can be subject to residencia, and they consequently enjoy absolute impunity in their transgressions; for that decree does not allow a sufficient time for complaints to be made in a country like Filipinas, where intercourse between the provinces and the capital is so uncertain, interrupted, and difficult, on account of the vicissitudes of weather and climate, the lack of roads and postal facilities, and the great distance of many provinces from Manila. “This impunity has most serious results, very detrimental to the peace and quiet of the islands; for such has been the class [213]of persons whom necessity has compelled to appoint as alcaldes-mayor that not only have they used their authority to possess themselves of the property of the Indians—seizing the boats of traders, which injured the natives in their traffic—and defrauded the Indians with unjust exactions; but they have humiliated the religious, stolen moneys from the king, outraged young girls, burned houses, and, in short, have thrown the provinces into a condition of effervescence and of conspiracy against the government which sent to the natives such a ruler.” Bernaldez urges the government to take such measures that the residencia of the alcaldes may be made effective and just.]

Of the selection of all classes of employees for the Filipinas Islands

[On this point, the writer urges greater care and more sense of responsibility. All government officials, of every grade, should be of good morals, old enough to have stability of character, sufficiently competent and experienced to understand their duties, and such as will set a good example to the natives.] The imprudence of one man alone has often been sufficient to incite a sedition in the minds of various parties or castes in those islands; and in any case it is very dangerous to entrust positions of command to persons who are not endowed with well-proved ability and discretion. I cannot attribute the laxity which in recent times is evident in all branches of the administration and government of those islands to any other cause than the injudicious selection of many of their employees. The military corps, whose former captains and subalterns had been mainly sergeants [214]sent from the Peninsula, were kept in the best order and discipline until, in the year ’23, those officers were added to them who accompanied General Martinez—of some of whom, according to the documents which were executed for my court, their appointment to the Indias, with their scandalous conduct, looks like a proof that in España there was neither religion, morality, nor subordination. [Bernaldez urges that certain qualifications be required for office in Filipinas; the governors should be members of learned bodies, and excel in discretion and ability, and in the art of governing, and of promoting the welfare of a country, rather than in the military art. The intendants should be “enlightened economists, capable of creating and promoting the great wealth of which that virgin country is capable.” The officials of the Audiencia should be at least thirty-five years old, with ten years of service, and experienced in legal practice; and other employees should be trustworthy, experienced, and not mere youths. “The Filipinas Islands, like every colony, are the country of the corruption of youth, and where it is necessary to work with men whose characters are already formed.”]

Of the use of weapons in Filipinas

[The writer protests against the carelessness which, contrary to the laws of the Indias, has allowed the natives to possess and carry weapons—even including campilans and sabers, pistols and guns. These arms have, through culpable negligence of the government officials, been imported in the foreign ships and sold publicly; and, possessing them, the natives are a constant source of danger to the whites. He recommends [215]that the governor of Filipinas be commanded to disarm the natives, using mild and politic methods, and allow them no implements or tools save those required in their labor; to stop the importation of arms into the islands; to compel all coasting vessels to deposit with the authorities, during their stay in the harbor, the arms which they carry for defense against the pirates; to see that no weapons be allowed in the villages save those needed by the local guards; and to stop all clandestine manufacture and sale of gunpowder.]

Of the despatch of assistance to the Filipinas Islands

[This section is devoted to the evils resulting from the remoteness of the islands, and the neglect of providing them with facilities for communication with España; it is necessary, if the government desires to keep the islands; to remedy this deficiency at once, for their material prosperity, the administration of justice, their safety from enemies, their loyalty to the crown—all are at great risk under present conditions. “The establishment of postal service in vessels of the royal armada would be a most burdensome expense to the treasury of España and to that of Filipinas. Unfortunately, previous to the royal decree of 1820 in regard to the commerce of Filipinas, in the long period of forty years only twenty trading ships have gone to those islands, leaving them without assistance or communication during the long space of three, four, five, or [even] seven years.” However, this can be remedied, and without expense, by suitable measures for the promotion of commerce between the islands and España, “an attempt at [216]which has been made in these last six years, during which time more expeditions direct to Filipinas have been effected than in the preceding forty years—that is, sixteen from Cadiz, three from Santander, Coruña, and San Sebastian, and five whose return is now expected.”]



[Of the failure of governors and intendants to make reports]

[Exact and circumstantial information is of course, necessary for the guidance of the home government in all measures relating to the resources, needs, development, and administration of the islands, and annual reports on all these matters are demanded from governors and intendants by the laws of the Indias. Essential as this requirement is, it has always been neglected.] What those officials sometimes write, when questioned about these matters, are but generalities; their reports and information are reduced to how much has been produced and how much spent, in the résumé of the royal exchequer accounts. Thus it is not known with what necessity and justice certain extraordinary expenses have been incurred, what number of employees the king has in that colony, what causes have occasioned the increase or decrease in the product of the revenues, and, finally, how the means and resources of the people who contribute to the royal income can be augmented [217]so that the latter can likewise be increased, all which the government ought to know. [It is true that the governors are laden with multifarious routine duties, which often prevent them from attending to these important matters, and from examining conditions personally, for which they have to depend upon the reports of their subordinates; and these are apt to be actuated by self-interest and they do not like reforms, so their statements are not very reliable. The reports made by the municipalities, commercial consulate, and other bodies are of the same sort, as being always from the standpoint of their corporation; and neither authorities nor corporations have the same stimulus to thoroughness, accuracy, and energy as has the private person who undertakes an enterprise. It is through the latter class that great projects and advances are made, but such persons hesitate to present plans for these to the authorities there, because the authorities do not examine them personally, “but by means of a contentious, voluminous, and annoying expediente,” and likewise have no authority to adopt these plans until they are referred to Madrid—where, too, they are not encouraged to bring such projects before the royal government, and these, moreover, would have to be sent to Manila first (apparently to contend there with the aforesaid expediente). Bernaldez continues:] In order, then, to awaken this interest of enterprising private persons in the agriculture, manufactures, and commerce of Filipinas, it is necessary to have there a body expressly devoted to this object, and authorized to adopt provisionally any plan for improvement and progress which may be proposed to it and examined by it with the aid of its special knowledge of the country; and this body [218]ought to be the superior council of the royal exchequer of the islands …. This council, as such, has very little occupation; its ministers, like all who are employed in Filipinas, attend to their official duties only in the forenoons, remaining free during all the afternoons and evenings for employment in a service of so great importance as this.

I am, then, of opinion that his Majesty should deign to establish the following: That the superior council of the royal exchequer in Filipinas constitute a similar council for the improvement and prosperity of the country, with the object of stimulating in every way the Indians to work, and capitalists to undertake enterprises. That its members hold weekly meetings for this purpose, at such hours as the president shall designate. That it also call in the proprietors of lands, agriculturists, manufacturers, and merchants of the country, listen to their views, and encourage them to propose reforms and plans for promoting the useful arts. That it be authorized to decide upon the execution of projects, provisionally, until the approbation of his Majesty is secured, in all matters which do not occasion loss to the country or injure the interests of the treasury. That it can draw upon the treasury of the community for a moderate amount of necessary expenses for the encouragement and reward of enterprises, for anything which can bring a positive and general benefit to the Indians and the government.

Of the royal court

[Our writer notes the requirement of the laws of the Indias that the governors and audiencias should consult and act together in matters of government, [219]and the excellent results of this procedure.6] But unfortunately such has not been the case in the recent governments of Filipinas. The governor-presidents have entirely separated themselves from their audiencias, and have governed alone—sometimes in military fashion, not heeding the opinions and customs of the country, but depending on force of arms; and sometimes only by the advice of the lawyer who assists the governor, who has the title of government counselor [asesor], and who, although he ought to limit himself to giving opinion on points and cases regarding statutes, is counselor in all the arduous matters of administration. From this it has resulted that the fate of the colonies may be left in the hands of this class of counselors, and that their subordinates have had so much power and importance. [Moreover, this course leads to dissensions and hostilities between the governor and the Audiencia, which is a bad example to furnish to the people and lowers their respect for the authorities.] It must be borne in mind that the Indians of Filipinas are not so sunken in ignorance that they do not of themselves, and likewise through their attorneys and confessors, recognize that they have a sovereign who rules them, and who to this end has given them laws; consequently, all lack of concord among the authorities, and every change introduced in the method of governing the villages, must produce fatal consequences. [It is therefore recommended that the governor consult the [220]Audiencia in all matters of the internal government of the islands, and any failure in this should be made a charge in his residencia.]

Of the administration of justice in general

The consideration and respect which the Audiencia of Manila merits among the Indians proceeds also from those times in which its members made official visits to the provinces, and in these visits did so much good to the villages. The visiting auditors were, in reality, friendly mediators in the disputes between the Indians; and they made agreements, placed limits to the villages, furnished a sort of municipal ordinance, and protected the natives against the oppressions of the alcaldes-mayor. Notwithstanding my high opinion of that tribunal, I regard as very proper the provisions of law xxxiv, título ii, book ii of the laws of the Indias in regard to the removal and promotion of its ministers, basing my opinion on the same arguments as did the law—that is, that it is very desirable not only to reward them, but to uproot them from the friendships which they contract in places where they remain a long time. These friendships, whose influence is always detrimental to the equitable administration of justice, are in Manila an almost necessary result of the small Spanish population, of the lack of all public amusement or diversion, and of the fact that with the enervating effect of the climate the rectitude and vigor of European morals is lost after some years of residence in the country. [The Audiencia has been unable to attend to the administration of justice in the islands as it has desired, for it has always been hindered by the many obstacles which arise from the [221]storms, the lack of roads and mail service, the attraction of all the lawyers in the islands to the capital, the ignorance of the gobernadorcillo and the alcalde of each other’s language and of judicial procedures, the dilatory mode of carrying on these between the provinces and Manila, etc. “Thus it is very common that these lawsuits, besides being always full of defects, last three, four, or six years; and that in that long period either the delinquents take to flight, or the documents are lost.” Even in the Audiencia itself there are many obstacles to its action. Its subordinate officials are Indian or mestizo lawyers, who often are neither competent nor qualified for their positions;] and that which most contributes to retard the despatch of business, and to maintain the offices of the court without any organization, is the unfitness of those who occupy the class or purchasable and renunciable offices. The court clerk, the special commissioners, and the attorneys know nothing else than how to obtain the greatest possible advantage from the purchase of their offices. Without any instruction in the obligations of those positions, because they cannot acquire it in that country, and incapable of carrying out even what the ministers themselves have the patience to teach them, those men are, notwithstanding, the only ones whom the ministers can choose for those offices, because they are likewise the only ones who can outbid others in the sale of them. These positions are also of little advantage, because in the immense extension of the military jurisdiction, among the wealthy persons of Filipinas, the tribunal of the War Department has drawn to itself all the civil causes of importance in the islands; and the Audiencia has been reduced to [222]criminal causes, and the minor controversies over land among the Indians, for which reason it is impossible to have educated Europeans who will purchase those posts and serve in them. The consequence of this is that the offices of the Audiencia are in the utmost disorder; that they do not contain even the books of entry which the laws provide for, or registers, citations, or reports of cases; that in order to record a decree or an official report it is necessary for a minister to take upon himself the task of doing that; and, finally, that the administration of justice must necessarily be slow. [Bernaldez therefore recommends that the ministers of the Audiencia be promoted at least every ten years to other appointments; that the minor offices be no longer purchasable or renunciable, but filled directly by royal appointment, and given to suitable persons, with good salaries (which are specified); and that the government of the islands provide some expedient for raising money to pay the salary of an attorney-general in each province.]

Of the alcaldes-mayor and military governors of the provinces

[The office of alcalde-mayor and provincial governor involves the civil government and defense of the province, the administration of justice, and the collection of the taxes; but those who are appointed to it are usually only traders, in reality, and care more for the profits yielded by the trade that is permitted to them than for the obligations of their office. They are paid twenty-five hard dollars a month for salary, “and they pay to the treasury the same sum for the indulto [i.e., privilege], as it is called there, [223]of trading,” to which pursuit they devote all their time and energies during the term of their office.] A system of alcaldeships so anomalous and irregular nevertheless produced at the outset some benefits to the islands, because, by reason of the great lack of capitalists there, many products of the agriculture and industries of the provinces would have received no encouragement if the alcalde had not speculated in them for the sake of his own trade. It is also necessary to note that there are provinces with which, on account of their remoteness and the little advantage which they have for the coasting trade, there was hardly any other means of communication than the barks of the alcalde. But now, when the coasting trade has become so general, it is a necessity to abolish, in most of the provinces of the islands, that absurd system of trading alcaldes; and to appoint in their places corregidors, lawyers educated in España, with only a salary, and the charge of making collections for the royal revenue, with the right to the offices in the Audiencia there. This increase in expenditure should be covered by the duties which ought to be imposed on the coasting trade, which by this means remains free from all impediment. [Bernaldez urges that the provincial magistrates be carefully selected, for their knowledge, experience, discretion, and executive ability; and that they be men who will devote themselves to the proper administration of justice, the study of those regions hitherto unknown, plans of reform, and the encouragement of industry and commerce among the people—not forgetting to preserve friendly relations with the parish priests. He recommends that seventeen of the provinces in the islands of Luzon, Panay, and Cebú be divided [224]into corregidorships, eight into those of the first class, and nine into those of the second, with specified salaries to each; that appointments to these posts be made for six years; and that corregidors of the first class be proposed by the Audiencia.]

Of the taxes

[At present, the tribute paid by the Indians should not be increased because so many of them would be distressed by any heavier tax; but this might be done later, when the class of large proprietors may have increased in numbers. The payment of this tax in kind is a source of loss, not only in the quantity and quality of the products paid in, but in the damage caused by transportation and storage; and in selling the products thus received by the government there is loss, because its agents are poor managers of such business, not having the shrewdness or the knowledge of the markets which enable private merchants to make their profits. The commutation of the payment from money to kind was only partly due to the influence of the alcaldes, who preferred it for the benefit of their own trading;] the cause which has rendered that commutation almost necessary and which operates directly to the prejudice of the Indian, is the lack of a colonial money peculiar to the Filipinas Islands, like that which the other possessions in Asia have (of the necessity of which I will speak in another chapter), in order to revive internal commerce and promote and facilitate the payment of taxes.

The indirect taxes by means of government monopolies in Filipinas are, in my opinion, those most suitable to the native disposition of inhabitants who, furnished most abundantly by the soil with all the [225]income necessary for their support, convert the superfluous enjoyments of life into objects of prime necessity. It should be a firm principle of good government to protect and rectify the administration of these indirect taxes, especially those on tobacco and wine—not only because these will be sufficient to cover abundantly all the expenses of army and navy, but because in case of a war and the absolute cessation of trade the government will have this firm support for its existence; and therefore no hearing should be given to the suggestions and proposals of those persons who are craftily working to free the islands from those monopolies. But so long as these taxes are not made general through all the provinces of the archipelago, so that the fire of the contraband trade (which always finds lodgment in the exempt provinces) may be extinguished, and until certain reforms are adopted in their administration and protection, the produce [of these taxes] in favor of the royal exchequer must be very disproportionate to the amounts consumed by that large population.

Of the revenue from tobacco

The revenue which supports the Filipinas Islands, which cannot be replaced by any other, and which if it were properly established and administered would yield incalculable advantages, is that from tobacco. Three millions of inhabitants, all without exception of sex or age consumers of that article—and for each one of them, on the average, and at a very low estimate, can be set down a consumption of four pesos [worth] a year—would produce an addition to the revenue of twelve million pesos, which they would obtain from the land and from their industries, in [226]order to give at the same time a great impulse to commerce. This is not a paradox, for the use of tobacco is of so prime necessity for the Indians that the same calculation can be made for that object that would be made for the use of bread in España. [Bernaldez considers the injurious effects of enforcing this monopoly in only a part of the islands—“although more than half the population is today subject to the monopoly, its income is only one-tenth of what, at a reasonable estimate, it ought to be”—and those of its careless and negligent administration. He makes the following suggestions:] That the collection of the tributes from the Indians of Filipinas be made compulsory in money, as soon as the colonial money can be placed in circulation in their provinces. That the monopoly of tobacco in Filipinas be extended to all the [now] exempt provinces, without exception; and the government there will succeed much better in establishing it therein by sagacity than by authority or force. That the examination and appraisal of the leaf tobacco which the monopoly purchases from the growers be made before a board which the government there shall appoint annually, composed of officials from the capital who are most trustworthy and intelligent in that branch of administration, such tobacco as proves to be unfit for use being burned in their presence. That all the tobacco which can be collected in Filipinas be conveyed to España, by means of contracts with private persons for the freighting of ships; and with it the amount which can be remitted from the [different] branches of the royal exchequer, and the annual surplus of their funds. [227]

Of the revenue from wine

The product of the revenue from wine cannot in Filipinas be considered so important as that from tobacco, because the Indians are very moderate in their drinking. The wines made from the cocoanut and nipa (the only ones subject to the monopoly) are wholesome for the Indians; and as the monopoly has regulated the supply for each village, greatly improving the process of making the liquor and diminishing its strength, the Indians prefer the monopoly to the free privilege of this article. The failure of this revenue to increase depends on two causes: first, that the monopoly is not extended, as it ought to be, to all the provinces of the islands, not only thus to place all the natives on the same footing, and so suppress the contraband trade, but to prevent by this method the manufacture by the Indians of other beverages which are more injurious to their health, and which, without giving them pleasure, intoxicate them as has been the case with the brandy and rum from sugar-cane juice or molasses; second, the great amount of the two last-named liquors which is clandestinely furnished to the public, as a result of the permission, very negligently guarded, which was given to manufacture them freely to export abroad, or to sell them under a certain tax in order that they should not injure the consumption of the article placed under monopoly control. [Bernaldez admits that the manufacture of the above-mentioned brandy and rum ought to be allowed, “because otherwise the country would lose the enormous quantity of molasses which results from the sugar-making, which has a considerable value, but cannot be employed for other uses;” [228]but the government ought to maintain the value of the monopolized beverages, and at the same time facilitate the exportation of rum and brandy.7 He recommends, besides the extension of the wine monopoly:] That, as a consequence, every other kind of beverage made in the country be prohibited in the islands for the common use of the Indians. That the manufacture of brandy and rum from sugar-cane be allowed only for the export trade. That each manufacturer be likewise allowed to have a retail warehouse, under the imposts which they now pay. That the manufacturers be compelled to establish their factories in the immediate vicinity of Manila, where they can and must be watched, at their own expense, by the revenue clerks. That all the brandy and rum which is made from sugar be immediately deposited in warehouses, the keys of which the custom-house shall take charge of, the government levying on it moderate duties for deposit as well as for export.8

Of the head-money, or personal tax, from the Chinese

[The Chinese were at first allowed in Filipinas only to cultivate the soil and work in handicrafts; but they have drawn into their possession the control of trade and commerce, “winning the good-will of [229]the government and the tolerance of the inhabitants of Manila with a thousand intrigues unknown in the country. They have done in Filipinas what the Europeans ought to have done, that is, to acquire wealth and send it, or themselves go with it, to their own country to establish commercial houses;” and thus they have added a marvelous amount to the wealth of China. Their method of doing business is explained—practically the same as is done in the United States at the present time; united capital and effort, division of the gains accordingly, quick sales and small profits, etc. They have obtained the exclusive retail trade in Manila, and a great part of the wholesale trade, “and thereby have aroused the hostility of corporations and private persons, notwithstanding that they are a class of peaceable and industrious people in the country.” Bernaldez thinks that their tax of six pesos a year is much too small, considering the advantages which they enjoy and the large fortunes which they acquire in the islands; in Batavia the Chinese pay the government as much as thirty pesos a month for merely the permission to trade. The tax on them at Manila is farmed out to a Chinaman, and does not yield as much as it should. The following recommendations are made:] That measures be immediately taken to correct and render accurate the registration of the Chinese settled in Filipinas. That the individuals of that nation be divided into three classes: first, wholesale merchants, understanding by that term all those who embark for China and receive thence goods on commission or for their own account; second, retail merchants, or shopkeepers; third, artisans of every class. That these be distributed by groups under head-men [por cabecerias], [230]which shall not exceed sixty individuals to each one. That every Chinaman, as soon as he is registered, shall be joined to one of these groups, the head-man becoming responsible for him. That these Chinese heads of barangay must give security for the tribute from those under them, and collect the tax and deliver it to the alcalde-mayor of their respective province, being responsible in every case for the residence and occupation of their tribute-payers; and for this commission collecting the three per cent. That in future the tax on the Chinese already settled and those who shall settle in Filipinas shall be as follows: the wholesale merchant, ten pesos fuertes a month; the retail merchant, four pesos ditto; the artisan of every class, two pesos ditto. That every Chinaman settled there shall be free to return to his own country, provided he is not married, the limit of six months being allowed for this. That the Chinaman, of whatever class, who shall not pay his respective tax within one year shall be sent and delivered up to one of the ranch-owners for compulsory labor [por repartimiento], in order that there he may work at the day-wages agreed upon, which must not fall below two reals a day and food-rations of rice; and that the ranchman shall with these wages pay the tax [due], at the rate of two pesos a month.

[Among the advantages derived from this arrangement will be that of sending out of the islands the many poor and useless Chinese who have been gradually multiplying there, and have been infecting the natives with their vices. It will even benefit the Chinese themselves, “who with two reals a day, which make 7½ dollars a month clear” (thus showing [231]that Sunday labor was exacted), “can pay two pesos of tax and be exceedingly prosperous.”]9 [232]

Of the custom-house duties

The royal decree of August 25, 1818, by which it was decided that the exaction of import and export duties should be made in the Manila custom-house from the owners of the vessels, without considering the ownership of their lading, and that if the vessel were Spanish it should pay three per cent, and if foreign six per cent, has been a special favor or privilege granted to half a dozen Spanish ship-owners (for those who conduct the commerce with China and Bengala cannot be more than that number), with serious loss to the exchequer. This is, of course, annually deprived of the considerable income of the three per cent rebate on all foreign goods imported into Manila, which is a direct benefit to the foreigners who own nearly all the commerce in those goods. The manufacturers of Filipinas, especially those of cotton fabrics—which are able to compete with, and even exceed in cheapness, those of China, since the cotton of which these are made is of their own raising—are being ruined, because that rebate of duties brings the prices of the Chinese goods so near to those of their infant industry that the former ought always to be preferred; and, finally, the above arrangement has also given opportunity for various frauds proceeding from the pretended sale of foreign vessels to Spaniards, solely for the purpose of availing themselves of the rebate of duties on their cargoes, and to the possession (under assumed names) by Chinese settled in Manila of Spanish vessels.

[Bernaldez states the considerations which should [233]regulate these duties, and the following recommendations for the payment of duties on various classes of merchandise, this amount to cover in each case the entire exaction: On national goods in transit, carried to Manila—on a Spanish vessel, three per cent; on a foreign ship, six per cent. The same goods for consumption in the country shall pay nine and ten per cent respectively. On foreign goods from India and China, for domestic consumption, ten and fifteen per cent respectively; from this class should be excepted the wines, brandies, pig iron, small articles of cast iron, dry beans, and foreign paper, which should pay twenty and twenty-five per cent respectively. Goods, whether national or foreign, not declared as in transit at leaving Manila shall pay two and four per cent respectively; but those registered on a Spanish ship from India, China, and all Asia for España, ten per cent. Coined silver and gold, and silver bullion, shall pay no entrance duty at Manila, but on leaving that port shall pay three and six per cent respectively; and foreign gold in bullion shall pay eight per cent at entering Manila (whether on Spanish or foreign vessels). National products, and those of the industries of Filipinas, shall pay when exported eight per cent on a foreign vessel, but nothing on a Spanish ship. The duty of the merchant’s peso [peso marchante] which the municipality of Manila collects should be abolished as obstructive to commerce; for the legal origin of this imposition is unknown, and it is very unsuitable for a municipality which is rich through its rents, revenues, and imposts. Bernaldez believes that this tariff would promote agriculture, industry, and navigation, and benefit the royal treasury. More coin would be brought [234]into the islands, the plan of exempting it from duties having been adopted for that purpose by all the other governments of Asia. The burden of these duties will fall mainly on the rich class, and not on the Indians. The “infant industries” [fabricas nacientes] will be protected, and the Spanish merchant marine will be given the advantage over the foreigners.]

Of the inter-island trade

The inter-island trade of the Filipinas Islands is at present quite active, as is shown by the latest reports received. Its importance is well worth consideration, since the commodities which are traded in this way constitute the greater part of the cargoes of the export commerce. Tortoise-shell, gold, birds’-nests, balate, wax, cacao, and other products form cargoes of great value which come from the provinces. The exclusive proprietors of this commerce are the alcaldes-mayor of the provinces, and the rich mestizos and Chinese, who in this traffic have made exorbitant profits, for it is these alone who exclusively avail themselves of the rise in prices which is produced in Manila by the arrival there of foreign vessels together. This causes those posts of alcalde there to be very eagerly sought, since in only three years of holding them they allow [the making of] a fortune; and also that the class of mestizos and Chinese is the only one that is sure of becoming rich in Filipinas …. The result is, that with the exception of the great fortunes which in other times were made in the privileged commerce of Nueva España, it is this [coasting trade] from which have proceeded the fortunes of Manila. [This branch of trade is exempt from all duties, a privilege which [235]does not benefit either the agriculture or the other industries of the Indians, since they always sell at the same price, and have no share in the profits of the trade. Nor is this commerce promoted by the freedom from duties, for it will always continue and always yield great profits to those who carry it on—who can well afford to pay a moderate tax on their lucrative trade, especially as it is partly for their benefit that the government incurs so great expense for curbing the piracies of the Moros. It is recommended:] That all commodities, whether natural products or those of industry, which arrive at the port of Manila by sea from the provinces shall pay one per cent on the prices current in that city; and from this tax shall be exempted only rice (whether in the hull or cleaned), cocoanut oil, and fresh fruits, as being articles of prime necessity for the Indians. That no duty shall be collected for those same products when they are transported by land, or by the rivers and bayous of the island of Luzon. And that, from the time when this law shall go into effect, the power which the municipality of Manila has to tax the value of the provisions which come from the provinces shall be suppressed. The exemption from duties will tend, in regard to the provinces of Luzon, to encourage in that island preëminently, as is desirable, agriculture and industry, and at the same time will save to the custom-house the new expenses which it would [otherwise] have to incur for establishing posts and men to guard against smuggling.

Of money

The Spanish peso is the universal money in the commerce among all the nations of Asia; and, as [236]therefore the exterior commerce is constantly drawing it into circulation, the governments of all the colonies in that part of the world have found themselves obliged to create a colonial money, which on account of its provisional value cannot be taken out of the country, and, being directed into the internal commerce of the province, feeds and multiplies exchanges. In Filipinas there was no need of adopting that measure while its commerce with Nueva España lasted, because then those islands were receiving annually a million of Mexican pesos, and the situado of two hundred and fifty thousand; and, besides this, the business that was carried on during that period in the natural and industrial products of the country was almost insignificant. And if in Filipinas at this present time enough money circulates to support the outside traffic, that results from the fact that the profits which the colony has gained from the commerce with all the nations of Europa (the balance of which is in favor of Filipinas) are greater than the losses of money which it experiences in its commerce with India and China. [This is of course a very precarious situation; for the contingencies of war, diversion of commerce from the islands, or poor crops may at any time compel Filipinas to send out all its money to India or China for the supply of its needed commodities; and this would ruin even the internal commerce, “on account of the serious difficulties which the establishment of a system of public credit there presents.”] Besides that, considering now the matter of giving a strong impulse to the agriculture and industry of those islands, there would be needed for the former project many millions of pesos in constant circulation in the provinces, [237]and there must be a great reversion of the capital employed in commerce to the interior of the islands; and this cannot be practiced in a country in which hardly enough money circulates to support the government and the demands from without, and which had undertaken to promote its interests by commerce before placing its agriculture and industry on a sound basis. In almost all the provinces of the islands very little money circulates, and in some of them there is not even what is necessary in order that the natives can pay the government taxes; and from this has proceeded the necessity of commuting the tribute from money to kind. The Spanish pesos go from and return to the provinces rapidly; and it can be said that the produce of the taxes which has to be sent annually to the capital, and the importations of the alcaldes and the mestizos, are equal. Most of the Indians trade among themselves by means of simple barter, and the mestizos make them pay dearly with their products for the money that they need for clothing themselves and paying their taxes.

There is, then, nothing to hope for—either advance in agriculture and the useful arts, or the great extension and progress of which the consumption of monopolized articles is susceptible—without the creation of a colonial money which will remain within the colony to which it belongs, which will liberate it from the precarious dependence on foreign commerce, which will afford to the Indian the just profits from his labor, which by remaining with him in the provinces will encourage him to obtain possession of it as an easy means of providing him with the necessities of life at the time [when he needs them,] and which likewise may be an allurement to [238]his children—which up to a certain point it is of great importance to encourage in the Indians, as a powerful incentive to make them labor. [Lastly, this colonial money would check the exportation of silver coin by the Chinese,10 who would then prefer to export from Filipinas its nature products in return for their commodities. In China all the Spanish pesos are, in order to keep them within the empire, disfigured with so many marks that they cannot be used in foreign commerce.] We have no knowledge thus far of there being silver mines in Filipinas; but it is a positive fact that gold abounds there, of so low grade and so mingled with silver that it has little more value than that metal. This circumstance, aided by the introduction of some silver bars from America, carried thither by foreigners, [239]the recoinage of the half-dollars, and of the silver two-real, one-real, and half-real pieces which circulate in the islands, and the use of the great amount of old silver in household articles—which is there sold at very low prices, on account of being alloyed and manufactured in China—would supply the government with easy means for the creation of a colonial currency without need for expense, or for forestalling [the income from] any fund, only by accepting from the persons interested their respective materials in gold or silver, under assay, and returning to them the value of the metal in the coined money which it would yield, after deducting the necessary expenses. Likewise the government could accept, in payment of all taxes, the gold which is obtained from the placers, at the same prices at which the Chinese carry it away, and after it was assayed at its mint—where the learned professors who for this purpose would be sent from Europe would dictate the necessary measures for carrying into effect an undertaking which is the basis for all progress in the islands. I am therefore of opinion that his Majesty should deign to issue the following orders: That a colonial currency be immediately created for internal circulation in the Filipinas Islands. That for this purpose a mint be established there. That the standard for this money be the same as those of the moneys of the same kind which have been adopted in the other colonies of Asia. That the subdivisions of its value be made according to the needs of internal trade. That all the gold and silver, in various forms, which private persons offer for coinage be accepted at the mint, returning it to them in the standard coin which it yields after the expenses [240]are deducted. That the government there be authorized to accept in payment of taxes the gold from the mines of Filipinas, after it is assayed. That regulations be drawn up by competent persons, in which precautions are taken against any fraud in this matter.

Of the charitable funds established in Filipinas

[The obras pías merit full attention from the government,] on account of the advantages which the agriculture and industry of the islands may gain from them. If the limited and privileged dealings of Manila with Nueva España had not been reduced to a merely passive commerce of transfer or transportation, those foundations would, at the same time while they have become wealthy, have given real opulence to that commerce. Of the enormous profit of two hundred and three hundred per cent which the transactions of the galleon yielded at Acapulco, the greater part was for the foreign dealers of India and China, whose wares supplied almost all the lading of the galleons, and for the obras pías; a greatly reduced profit remained for the Manila merchants, which could be shown by a calculation which might be made of the many millions imported from Nueva España by the galleons, and of the comparatively small value, in money or assistance, which has remained [therefrom] in the islands. [The returns from these funds are now greatly diminished, since the cessation of the Acapulco trade, for on that depended the commerce with India and China, which also has practically ended, save for the commodities from those countries which are consumed in Filipinas. This could not have been foreseen by the [241]founders of those funds, many of which, moreover, are impeded by various restrictions and conditions; and the government should interpose its authority not only to secure the fulfilment of the founders’ wishes, but to commute the investment of the funds in such a way that they may be used to promote the agriculture and industry of the country. These funds ought also to be preserved as a most useful resource in case of war or revolution, when the usual revenues of the government would cease. Bernaldez therefore recommends:] That the government of Manila furnish special protection to the charitable foundations of the islands, and keep close watch over their honest administration. That it stimulate the managers to obtain immediately from the competent authority the commutation of the allotments of these funds so as to benefit the agriculture and manufactures of the country, giving reports of what shall be effected in a matter so important for the welfare of the islands. That the funds in the communal treasuries of the Indians and the Chinese, those of the secular revenues,11 and any others which are not subject to private foundations and regulations, and which hitherto have followed in their investments the rules of the obras pías, shall be by preference set aside for rewards bestowed for enterprises in agriculture, industry, and inter-island trade. Thus will be remedied the injury arising from the failure of those great funds to be in circulation; and the abuse of employing them in favor of foreigners and their commerce, under assumed names, will be corrected. [242]

Of the arsenal of Cavite

[Bernaldez declares that the works of naval construction, etc., for the government can be accomplished for half the cost by means of private contracts awarded to the lowest bidder, which is proved by the history of all the enterprises which have been undertaken by the government in those islands, whether in agriculture, mining, or metal-working; “for, however great the disinterestedness and economy which can be ascribed to the officials who conduct the enterprise, in this direction nothing can take the place of the contractor’s activity and vigilance.” In the cutting and gathering of timber there is abundant cheating and graft, as that work is directed by Indian overseers, or by mestizos and Chinese; the latter have abandoned the system of day wages (“which the natural slothfulness of the Indian renders very costly”), and instead pay the natives so much for a certain amount of work (which they call paqueao). “In this way the Indians, who always are cheated in these calculations, have to redouble their efforts to gain the amount bargained for, thus allowing to the mestizo the benefit of at least one-third of the usual daily wages.” After the timber is cut, its transportation, storage, and seasoning cost more when done by the government than by the mestizo contractor, and occasion much loss and damage. Ships of war could be built at Manila to great advantage, so far as the abundance and cheapness and location of the timber is concerned; but the lack of iron and copper there is a serious hindrance to such plans. There are mines of both metals in the islands, but they are not worked for lack of enterprising persons and suitable machinery. Bernaldez recommends: That the crown [243]offer large rewards for the successful operation of the iron and copper mines in the islands, the supply therefrom of metal sufficient for the construction of ships and cannon, and the introduction of machinery for mining and iron-working. That arrangements be made for building war-ships each year, by contracts for the supply of timber and the manual labor. That competent engineers and constructors be sent from España, at good salaries; that necessary supplies and materials be secured by contracts, bid for in public; and that funds from the royal exchequer be set aside for this purpose to the amount of one hundred thousand to one hundred and fifty thousand pesos annually. That all the construction and repairing of war-ships for Filipinas be done through contracts, at public bidding; and that the arsenal of Cavite be reduced to a simple depository for the articles required for arming the ships, with such officials as may be necessary for the custody of these.]

Of the agriculture of the Filipinas Islands, in general, and of their principal productions

The Filipinas Islands, on account of the fertility of their land, their abundant rains, and the great number of animals for labor, constitute an agricultural colony; and to the readiness with which the country supplies the principal articles for human support has been due the rapid increase of its population. And although the Indians, as a general thing, only devote themselves to the cultivation of what they actually need for subsistence, the annual production so far exceeds the necessities of the people that very seldom has the failure or scarcity of provisions been experienced. The abundance of its arable [244]lands and the excellence of its products have also rendered this colony capable of a considerable commerce with the other nations, at a much greater advantage over the other colonies, inasmuch as the land is tilled by free labor, which costs only the value of its food and clothing; and not by slaves, who, besides those expenses, occasion that of the premium or interest on the money invested in their purchase, which causes a difference of at least a third more in the cost of the manual labor employed in agriculture.

The neglected condition in which agriculture is in Filipinas, considered under this last aspect, and the backwardness in knowledge of the manipulations required in the preparation of its raw products for their consumption in trade, proceed from the following causes: (1) The lack of a stable and regular system of commerce which can assure to the inhabitants of the islands the annual exportation of the produce of an extensive agriculture. The foreign vessels resort to the ports there, some years in excessive number and others very infrequently; and this irregularity always produces an effect opposed to the interests of the colony. The extraordinary rise in prices—which during the last three years has reached a value double that from which the ability to sell at all times would enable the colony to gain a profit—and the consequent lack of commodities for supplying all the vessels, prevent them from returning in the following years; while the decline of prices below what is fair, caused by the non-arrival of ships, discourages large production in agriculture. The Indians are absolutely without capital and storehouses which would enable them to hold back their produce for another market. They are induced to [245]cultivate the soil solely by their present advantage; they always sell, but they suffer from the stern law of trade which, although it flatters them in years of scarcity, equally tyrannizes over them in years of abundance—for they are always deceived regarding the actual prices of the general market, of which they are ignorant; and one year only of unsuccessful sales, whether from lack of foreign ships, or through the loss of their crops, will be a warning to them for a long time. In short, the agriculture of Filipinas at this time depends on the irregular and transient stimulus which is furnished to it by the peripatetic capital of the mestizo, who buys only in the years when he calculates that he must in view of the condition of the crops and the market, make a profit; while the Indian farmer always sows his seed heedless of results, and without the guidance of that elementary principle in affairs of commerce that the estimate of what he acquires ought to be based on a calculation of the market for it. For the corrective of this evil, and assuming that, for reasons that are rightful and conformable to sound policy (as I have set forth), the residence of foreigners in the islands ought not to be permitted, I find no other means than this, that the government encourage, by judicious measures, the direct and unlimited commerce of España with that colony—of which I shall speak in another chapter, [presenting] the rough sketch of a plan which ought to produce the following effects: (a) The definite and reliable annual exportation from those islands, not only of the great quantity of sugar, indigo, coffee, and other native products which are needed in the ordinary consumption of España, but of that which Spanish commerce can [246]dispose of in the other nations and free ports of Europa. (b) The establishment of Spanish trading posts [factorias] in the interior of the provinces of Filipinas, which the Spanish mercantile interests will carry on for the sake of acquiring the agricultural produce at first hand, freeing the Indians from the oppressive rule of the mestizo trader, and forming contracts with them, at prices agreed upon, for a certain number of years.

[The backward condition of agriculture proceeds] (2) from the lack of great agricultural establishments. One of the causes for this is the fact that the capital of the islands, which ought to be employed for that object, has been diverted by the commerce of India, China, and Nueva España, which offers greater and quicker profits. The religious orders administer their estates as in mortmain, or by ecclesiastical rules. The Indians cultivate, not from inclination but through necessity, the little plots of ground on which they have fixed their abodes. They lack the buildings and appliances necessary for the preparation of the little sugar and indigo that they collect; and from that results the wretched and unreliable quality of those articles which so discredits them in the trade. They lack also the capital to incur the expenses of a regular plantation, and these enterprises require costly outlays at the start. But this cause of backwardness would be remedied by the impulse which would be given to commerce by the exportation of native products, which would attract to agriculture the capital which it has hitherto lacked, and by the special protection which the government can grant to large capitalists who may devote themselves to agriculture. [247]

(3) From the ignorance of the Indians, not only of the various methods of making plantations, but of the means of preparing the raw materials for their employment in the trade—a cause which is so universal and so mischievous that the agricultural products of Filipinas, which ought to be, on account of their excellent character and the extent of territory of the islands, commodities which should supply all the markets of Europe and hold the first rank in quality, are the most scarce in general commerce, and moreover lowest in price, as I am going to prove by some instances. The sugar of Filipinas is today the most important commodity for exportation which the commerce there includes. The cultivation of the sugar-cane cannot be improved; but the manufacture of the sugar is so defective that, in spite of the superior quality of the cane, the sugar which is produced from it is inferior to that which is called terciado [i.e., brown] at Habana. Although in the market of Cadiz the white sugar from Habana is worth thirty-two to twenty-five silver reals, and the brown sugar twenty-six to twenty-eight, the white sugar of Manila is worth twenty-four to twenty-five12—that is, nine silver reals less than the former, and two or three reals less than the latter on each arroba. Consequently, the temporary privilege granted by his Majesty in exempting the products of Filipinas from duties is the only support of the expeditions which have come [thence] to the Peninsula; and it is unquestionable that when that privilege ceases that commerce will likewise come to a complete stop. For [248]if from the twenty-four silver reals, the highest price at which an arroba of the Manila sugar can be sold, be deducted for duties eight reals and twenty-seven maravedís, the trader will receive a price of only nineteen silver reals, five cuartos; subtracting from this the fourteen and one-half reals of the prime cost at Manila (according to the latest information received), and the only profit left to him would be four reals, three maravedís—with which it is absolutely impossible for him to pay either the heavy freight charges on that commodity, or the interest on money and the insurance premiums, on a voyage three times as long as that from Habana. The low price [of sugar] in the market has no other cause than the lack of skill at Manila for manufacturing the sugar; this art is there found entirely in its infancy, and without any other method than that which, since very ancient times, the Chinese have taught them. [The sugar-makers have not proper machinery or appliances, or the knowledge, for any of the stages of the process; and their product is inferior, when it might be as good as that of Habana—or even better, if the same skill and care were used in making it as are used there. The above profit of nine reals on the arroba, if equally divided among the grower, the manufacturer, and the government (for duties which in that case should be imposed on the sugar), would yield each of them $300,000 annually, on the estimated production of 1,000,000 arrobas which would be practicable for Filipinas—to say nothing of the increased benefits to the laboring class—with improved methods of manufacture. To secure this, the government must be energetic in promoting large establishments there, and introducing machinery and [249]skilled laborers. “The funds in the communal treasury of the Indians, which at the present time must reach about $300,000, and whose object is the benefit of those same Indians,” might aid the government in meeting the expenses of such measures; the skilled artisans could instruct the Indian farmers in the new improved methods, and the industry would be almost perfected in two years’ time, at very little expense. Bernaldez describes in similar manner the deficiencies, possibilities, and needs of the indigo, coffee, and cacao industries, and urges the government to extend like care to these; what has been done thus far by the colonial government has been quite ineffective, because it has been in the form of proclamations and enactments which merely required small plantations to be made by all the inhabitants, but these failed because they disregarded the principles of political economy and made no provision for the individual interest of the cultivator.] There are, then, two means which ought to be adopted for the promotion of large plantations in Filipinas, incentive and instruction; and for this it is necessary to grant pecuniary rewards to the agriculturists, and furnish them with teachers from the near-by islands of Java or even Bourbon, where not only coffee but cacao is cultivated.

(4) And, finally, the cause which likewise exerts a powerful influence in [causing] the neglected and backward condition of agriculture is the slothfulness of the Indians and their absolute indifference to acquiring and keeping property. [This sloth is caused by the climate, the abundant supply of the necessities of life with little labor, and the hospitality which prevails among the natives;] and if it were not that [250]in the capital and its adjacent provinces there has now been introduced a certain degree of decency and [even] luxury in some families of that class, it would be difficult to find any one to render service or to practice the useful arts that are necessary in villages. [With a people like this, it would be hazardous to attempt to compel them to work; but “even if they are naturally slothful, they have their likes and dislikes; and a wise government ought to avail itself of these two powerful resources to urge them to work.” The Indians dislike to pay direct taxes, and hate the collector of these; also they are passionately fond of cockfighting and spectacles of all sorts, and of office-holding; and if these characteristics are considered in the policy of the government much can be done to make them industrious. Bernaldez recommends: That a system of direct, unlimited, and regular commerce be established between España and Filipinas, for the purpose of maintaining a reliable and definite annual exportation of the latter’s products. That agricultural establishments be protected by the government, being allowed (although at their own expense) the assistance of a band of irregular soldiers. That machines, tools, and other aids to agricultural production be admitted free of duties. That skilled workmen be taken to the islands as instructors in the manufacture of sugar and indigo, and cultivators of coffee, etc., with their machinery and tools; their salaries for three years and their transportation to Manila being paid from the communal funds of the Indians. That large rewards be paid to the farmers who shall make large plantations of coffee and other useful trees or establish the silk industry. That the owners of these large plantations shall be allowed to [251]keep on their lands each a cockpit for his laborers, free of expense. That groups of Indians, Chinese, and mestizos, limited to twenty families each, who shall maintain an indigo or sugar plantation of a certain extent in good condition, shall be relieved from paying the tribute so long as the plantation is kept up. That every Indian who works for wages during five consecutive years, to the satisfaction of his employer, shall be perpetually exempted from tribute, the employer paying the laborer’s tax for twenty years. That the Indians and mestizos who cultivate large plantations on their own account shall have the preference for the offices in their respective villages. That the government of Filipinas take measures to avoid frauds in connection with these proposed changes.]

Of the anfion, or opium

[Bernaldez describes the efforts made by the English East India Company to import opium into China, although against the will of the Chinese government, and states that a certain amount is smuggled into Manila to supply the Chinese settled in Filipinas; he supposes that the prohibition of this trade in the islands arose from the fear of the governors that the Indians would become habitual users of this drug and thus be injured; but in his experience of seventeen years in various judicial positions in Filipinas he has never seen a scandalous case of opium inebriacy among the Chinese of Luzon, nor any Indian brought into court for using the drug; and “the Indians without exception regard the use of opium with the utmost indifference and contempt.” He thinks that it should not be prohibited in Filipinas, [252]since its use appears not to injure the Chinese there, or to be necessary for the Indians; while the islands] ought not to be deprived of a revenue that is exceedingly lucrative for agriculture, commerce, and the treasury; of an article which in the order of nature ought to be exclusively for the trade and benefit of the islands; and a means by which the Manila commerce would draw great wealth from China, turning in its favor, and with large sales, the balance of trade with that empire, which is now and always has been against Manila. A chest of opium, weighing one pico of Filipinas or 100 cates of China (each of 22 onzas), would probably cost the Manila grower for all expenses at most 100 pesos; and its value in China is usually 1,400 to 1,600 pesos. Add to this advantage that of the large and secure market which Filipinas has close at hand, since there would be annually consumed in China more than eight millions pesos’ worth of this article from the islands; this would permit all the extension which they choose to give to the cultivation of this article. And if 8,000 chests of opium produced in Filipinas would yield in China 12,000,000 dollars, the royal exchequer, which ought to secure its proportion of the great advantages to agriculture and commerce, could without any difficulty load that product with a duty so considerable that it would produce four to six millions of pesos a year. [Bernaldez therefore recommends: That the government, without abrogating the present prohibition of the importation and use of opium in the islands, give free permission to capitalists to cultivate the poppy and export opium from Filipinas; that the poppy-fields be close to the capital and enclosed; that the harvest be superintended by trustworthy persons [253]from the revenue service, as is that of tobacco; and that the entire product be deposited in the magazines of the custom-house. That at the time of its exportation a duty of 25 per cent be collected on the value of the opium, at the prices current in China. That the concession of raising opium should be granted by preference to the planters who already are maintaining large plantations of sugar, indigo, coffee, and other useful products.]

Of the cotton manufactures

The Madrast commerce annually carries into Filipinas fabrics of cotton, called cambayas, to the value of $300,000 to $350,000, a sum which the traders carry back to their own country in cash, without taking away any natural or industrial product of Filipinas. Likewise the Chinese carry into the islands annually, by means of their champans, cotton fabrics with the names of manta Hipo, Chuapo, and others, to the value of $300,000, nearly all of which sum they carry back to their own country in cash. The Armenians of India and the Chinese had likewise the control, from the time of the conquest of the islands, of importing into them annually the enormous quantity of small cotton articles [pañuelos] and ordinary cambayas which the natives of the country consume, until intercourse with those coasts was interrupted in the late war with Inglaterra. Then necessity and the high price of those goods induced the natives of Filipinas to manufacture them, and in such abundance that the ships which arrived at Manila, after the peace, with those commodities suffered great loss; and from that time the importation of those fabrics ceased, and the natives continued to manufacture them [254]in the country. This has not been the case, however, with the fine cambayas and kerchiefs from Madrast, nor with the cotton fabrics from China; for the former are dyed with the beautiful and permanent Indian colors, furnished by certain plants which are to this day unknown in Filipinas, and the latter [are desired] on account of the very low prices at which the Chinese sell them. Thus, although various manufacturers of Manila have attempted to weave and dye that class of goods, they have not obtained favorable results, and have abandoned to the Armenians and Chinese the exclusive provision of Filipinas with those commodities. It seems impossible that a colony in which is produced cotton of a quality superior to that of all the other colonies in Asia, whose natives are industrious, and where the general consumption of the country offers a large and sure market for cotton fabrics, must be dependent for its supply on foreign manufacturers, and carry on with them a commerce which is one-sided [pasivo] and ruinous. Nevertheless, the causes of this incongruity lie in the great population of India and China as compared with that of Filipinas, which causes the wages paid for the spinning of the thread (and it is this item which increases or diminishes the cost of the woven goods) to be very low; in the enormous crops of cotton which those countries produce as compared with that of Filipinas, which abundance causes a diminution in the price of the raw material there; and, finally, in the superiority of the dyes of India, which no colony has been able thus far to imitate.

In order to compensate for the cheapness of hand labor in the great populations of India and China, it is necessary that in Filipinas cotton-spinning machinery [255]should be introduced, and that this project be encouraged by all means; that instructors in weaving and dyeing cambayas and kerchiefs be taken thither from Madrast, who shall at the same time introduce into Filipinas a knowledge of the plants from which the Oriental dyes are obtained, with the methods of planting and cultivating these—meeting this expense from the communal funds of the Indians. [These measures, and the promotion already urged for large plantations of cotton, would furnish employment to many natives of Filipinas, and “place in circulation within the country itself the $650,000 which annually are carried out of it in hard money to foreign lands for the value of the cambayas and other fabrics imported into it.” Moreover, a new and important line of goods would be added to the exports of Filipinas in these fine cotton fabrics, which would be equal to those of India and even cheaper; while the islands can always supply their own coarse cottons much more cheaply than these can be manufactured in España, an industry which should therefore be fostered in Filipinas. These coarse commodities could thus be supplied also to España, more cheaply than they can be manufactured there; thus Spanish commerce would be liberated from its present dependence upon foreign countries for them, and the money paid for them would instead go into the hands of Spaniards, in Spanish possessions. To secure these ends, the government of Filipinas should be cautious in imposing import duties on the fine foreign goods, gradually increasing them according to the ability of Philippine manufacturers to displace foreign goods by native products. Bernaldez therefore recommends: [256]That encouragement and rewards be conferred on those who introduce cotton-spinning machinery; that instructors in weaving and dyeing be brought from India, as above mentioned; that the manufacture of coarse cotton fabrics in the islands be promoted; that duties on the fine goods should be gradually increased; that raw cotton be permitted free exportation from the islands; and that the authorities of the exchequer there confer on these matters with the local manufacturers and merchants.]

Of the means for establishing regular communication and frequent and permanent mercantile relations between España and the Filipinas Islands.

[The writer urges the necessity of more interest and care for the needs of the islands, and action by the Spanish government in their behalf, if they are to be retained as a Spanish possession. For this purpose a regular commerce with the islands should be maintained, sufficient to keep twelve ships in constant employment, six sailing for the islands every year; and thus could be kept in efficient condition the large force (more than one thousand two hundred) of government employees in all the departments of the island service. He warns the ministry against plans which may be proposed by selfish interests and intrigues, for leaving the islands in their present poverty and isolation from the mother country. The commercial interests of the latter should unite to carry on this work, partly for their own profit, partly as a matter of patriotism. “The Filipinas Islands ought to be the center of the Spanish government’s power in Asia, the great market for Spanish commerce,” and the source of enormous revenues to the [257]Spanish treasury; they should be to España what India is to England, and are even more capable, by their natural endowments, of being a source of power and opulence to the mother country. Spanish commerce is being greatly injured by the restrictions laid upon trade with the countries of Asia, and the treasury should adjust the duties it exacts to those of other countries; this would put an end to the smuggling which wastes more than half of its revenues under the present system, cheapen prices, increase the consumption of goods, and augment the revenues of the crown. Bernaldez compares the restrictive Spanish policy with that pursued by the Dutch and English in Asia, the latter being “based on the principle of maintaining and protecting their principal possessions in those regions;” and illustrates this by allusion to their leading colonies, while he censures Spain’s negligence and folly in regard to Filipinas, and her apathy in allowing foreign nations to seize her commerce. The royal decree of January 10, 1820, although aiding Philippine commerce only as a temporary measure, has already done much for the islands; their commerce with España has placed in circulation considerable quantities of capital, and has increased the products of agriculture and the exportation of these from Manila to such a degree that their value has risen to almost double what it was before. This has been mutually beneficial to both countries; but the colony “will become the victim of this very prosperity” unless the home government shall grant certain exemptions and privileges to render it permanent and solid. The present restrictions on Spanish commerce prevent the exportation of silver to Filipinas, and enable the foreigners to monopolize [258]the trade of the islands in iron, wine, brandy, paper, and other wares which, being Spanish products, ought to be furnished by Spanish merchants—who, in this fettered condition, are “unable to find any way of placing funds in Manila for the purchase of their cargoes.” Moreover, “the premiums on insurance have been considerably increased for [vessels bearing] the Spanish flag, on account of the risk from the insurgent corsairs; and these same risks compel the merchants to increase, for their part, the expenses for the armament and crews of their ships.” The merchants of Manila have only two commodities to offer to Spanish trade, sugar and indigo, and the latter of these is not practicable for the sole lading of a vessel; while if the sugar crop should fail, those merchants are left without other resource, to say nothing of the uncertainty in prices caused by that in the number of foreign customers who will arrive at Manila. The Spanish government, therefore, “should open to the commerce of España with Filipinas a wider range of objects in all the productions of India and China, both natural and industrial, in which commerce can engage in speculation and with which it can furnish cargoes for its ships;” for the trade in sugar alone is far too inadequate and uncertain to support the ships needed for the maintenance and protection of Filipinas. Bernaldez urges forcibly such action by the government, and makes these recommendations: That Spanish ships be allowed to trade with Filipinas, without any restrictions or duties, save that on foreign goods carried by them a duty of ten per cent be paid, and five per cent on arrival at Manila. That returns from these consignments which consist in products of Filipinas shall be free from any duties or imposts whatsoever, at either [259]end of the voyage or on their circulation in España. That ships may complete their cargoes at Manila, if they wish, with any products of India, China, and other Asiatic countries, to the extent of 30 toneladas of lading for every 100 toneladas of Philippine products carried in the vessel; these foreign goods shall pay ten per cent duty at Manila, and ten per cent on reaching the Spanish ports, reckoned on the cost of the goods at Manila as shown by the official registers. Any ship-owner who shall have carried only Spanish goods to Filipinas and Philippine products on the return trip shall be given the right to make another voyage to the ports of India or China, carrying the goods most suitable for those markets and returning to España with white cotton stuffs and other goods at their pleasure. In these latter voyages, Spanish products carried to Asia shall be exempt from all duties; and foreign products carried thither shall pay a duty of ten per cent on the values in the general tariffs; and Asiatic goods brought back to España shall pay the same rate on the first cost in Asia, as shown by the original invoices. That silver may be freely exported from España for all these trading expeditions, by paying two per cent. And that the shipments of moneys due from the colonial revenues to the Spanish government be made through the Spanish ships which shall be at Manila at the beginning of the monsoon, in proportion to their respective tonnage.]

Of the necessity of forming a special code of laws for the Filipinas Islands; and of ordaining that a periodical visitation of that colony be made by officials from the Peninsula.

[Such visitation should be made] every five years, [260]by officials despatched from the Peninsula for the purpose of inspecting the manner in which the laws are fulfilled, and the conduct of government employees of all classes; to examine the progress made in all the branches of administration, and matters that are worthy of reform; to make provisional arrangements for these, according to the instructions that shall be entrusted to them; and to furnish information to his Majesty’s government, from their positive knowledge and examination of the facts. The climate of Filipinas, and the disposition, passions, and customs of its inhabitants, are very different from those of the two Americas, by whose code the islands are governed. Although they form a naturally agricultural colony, they lack agrarian laws suited to the nature and resources of the country. The administration of justice demands many modifications of the general laws; and the institutions of the municipality and the [commercial] consulate, similar to those of the Peninsula, have not corresponded to the beneficial ends which the sovereign intended in them, on account of the character of the persons who in Manila compose that class of corporations, and of their clashing interests and relations. The chairs of theology, laws, and philosophy should, I am forced to say, be abolished, on account of the abuse which is made of the knowledge gained in those branches of learning; and in their places be substituted chairs of agriculture, botany, mineralogy, arts, and commerce—throwing open the colleges and universities of España to the natives of Filipinas who desire to cultivate the former branches. In the laws which regulate law-suits, in the tariffs, in the penalties—in short, in all which has been adopted from other countries [261]and another condition of human life—there is a certain discord with the character, usages, and customs of the inhabitants of Filipinas which it is necessary to correct. A periodical visitation by officials experienced in affairs, would set everything in motion in that colony, fill the natives with hope, correct the arbitrary use of power (which usually increased in proportion to the distances from the center of government), and furnish to this government accurate and impartial data for making its decisions. It is a great mistake, in my judgment, to seek for light on affairs of government in the colonies from the information furnished by their authorities and corporations; they are always prone to support their own jurisdictions or interests, and, in whatever matter these may cross, it is impossible to expect impartiality. The laxity which the climate inspires, the pleasures, the relations of friendship, kindred, and interest in a small population of Spaniards - all these things cause the neglect of affairs of government, and the domination of private interests. Points of mere etiquette, questions of little importance to the [royal] service, and discords (which furnish a bad example) between married persons - it has been mainly these things which for many years have filled the official correspondence of the colonies and kept their authorities occupied. Many of the subjects which are touched upon in this writing are either absolutely unknown to the government, or have not been discussed with the specifications and explanations which their importance deserves.

I have explained to your Excellency impartially the causes which antagonize the security and progress of the Filipinas Islands; and your Excellency [262]will recognize, by the irrefutable facts which I have here set down, that in that colony there exist the elements necessary for it to render itself prosperous, and to distribute its wealth throughout España, increasing the glory and power of her sovereign. Your Excellency desires radical measures of reform, and solidly-grounded plans for prosperity, because you recognize that this is the great art of government and of political economy. I have endeavored not to embarrass myself with the examination of one-sided and isolated questions, but rather to rise to the comprehension of the axioms and general principles which would give perpetual strength to the tranquillity of the Filipinas Islands and lay the foundations for their advancing prosperity.

It has already been made evident by melancholy experience that the governmental measures adopted since the conquest of the colonies have not been suited to their object. It is therefore necessary either to leave existing in Filipinas the same causes which have brought other colonies to their ruin, or to change the system without loss of time. This great reform will assuredly be the work of the present enlightened government of his Majesty, and the future prosperity of the Filipinas Islands will be the grandest monument to his glory. Madrid, April 26, 1827.

Most excellent Sir,


[Here follows a “résumé of the measures proposed in this memorial,” which we have already presented by sections, at the end of each subject treated. At the end is a list of the items of estimated increase in the public revenues of the islands provided the reforms advocated by Bernaldez are adopted.] [263]

[Another MS. in the possession of Edward E. Ayer, dated Madrid, July 15, 1827, is of similar scope to this; it is signed with the initials “P. de S. M.,” and is addressed to the Spanish minister Ballesteros. The writer states, in the prefatory note, that his paper is the fruit of his many years of practical experience and observation, being actively engaged in commerce from Manila throughout the Philippine archipelago, in China, in all the foreign colonies of India, and on the Pacific coasts of America; and that he has written this paper “in the short time since he knew the charge given to Señor Bernaldez.” He sends it to the minister to be laid before “the junta extraordinaria (or special committee) which at that time was considering the judicious informatory report of the auditor Señor Bernaldez Folgueras in regard to the protection and preservation of the Filipinas Islands;” and he offers to appear before the committee in person, to give any further information or explanation which may be desired. He states that, like Ballesteros, he is a Galician; and he displays much enthusiasm for the advancement and prosperity of Filipinas. This MS. is headed, “Impartial reflections of a Spaniard, who is enrolled among the citizens of Manila, upon the causes of the decadence of the Filipinas Islands, and the means which he deems most suitable for making them productive to the central government, and for restoring them to the state which, by their advantageous location, they are capable of occupying.” It begins by deploring the injury and loss caused to the islands by the piracies of the Moros, and recommending that the Spanish government remedy the abuses and negligence displayed in the administration of the colony, and the enormous and extravagant expenditure of [264]funds in the wars against those pirates. This latter could be ended by effecting the conquest of Joló, Mindanao, and other centers of piracy, and establishing therein military and agricultural colonies of Visayans; this, and the development of the natural resources of those islands, would stop piracy and add much to the colonial revenues. Following the example of the English colonies in America, and of the Jesuit missionaries in Paraguay and California, agriculture should be fostered in every way in Filipinas—where much greater success can be obtained because the native population is large and robust, and needs not to be supplemented by slave labor, which fortunately has been kept out of the islands. This and other industries there can be promoted at the same time, by proper measures. The preservation of the colony cannot be left to the Indians, and six thousand men from España, selected carefully, should be sent to Filipinas as soldiers and colonists, lands being bestowed on them; and with them should come commissioners of high standing and integrity to reform abuses in the colony and take measures for its benefit. Banks should be established, currency provided for, and facilities given to all the people for securing credit when needed—under the care, protection, and partly the management of the government. Commerce should be made entirely free to the world, in all kinds of products, whether native or foreign, save for the payment of moderate customs duties. A lottery should be established; fire and marine insurance companies should be protected; all artisans, of every class, nationality, and religion, should be free to settle in the islands (those who oppose this show puerile fears and absurd and impolitic [265]notions); the ownership of land should be made secure and legal; waste lands should be brought under cultivation, under penalty of losing title to them; such lands should be freely granted to all, whether natives or foreigners, who will cultivate them; and intending colonists be aided in all practicable ways, even from the public funds. The convents and cabildos which have the administration of funds deposited with them for the promotion of agriculture should be obliged to render their accounts of these, and to distribute them so as to carry out the intentions of the founders; and the funds which were to be invested in the Acapulco trade should, as that has now ceased, be applied to the benefit of agriculture. Foreign nations should be allowed to send consuls to Manila, which would be a benefit not only to foreigners residing in the islands, but reciprocally to Spaniards who navigate the seas controlled by foreign nations. A printing-office should be established there, and provision be made for the publication of a daily paper devoted to commerce and industry, and having correspondents in the other Oriental colonies to furnish information of their progress and achievements in all the useful arts. A mint should be erected at Manila; and the government establishments there for making cannon and gun-powder, which now are almost useless, should be put on an effective footing, and those articles should be supplied for the defense of the merchant and coasting vessels. A probate court has been formed, for the proper care of intestate property and that left to minors; and its administration should be regulated carefully, and the funds in its charge be administered for the benefit of its owners and of the country. Manila [266]and its environs should be sufficiently policed, and lawlessness curbed; vagabonds should be kept under control, and all who employ Indian servants should be made responsible for their conduct; and such servants should not be employed by any one, whether Spaniard or foreigner, nor allowed to enter colleges as students, without producing certificates from the police department. A college should be established in which the youth should receive instruction in belles lettres, medicine, chemistry, botany, experimental physics, and mathematics; and a botanical garden should be made near Manila. Martins should be introduced into Luzon, for the extermination of the locust plague. The intendancy of the royal exchequer should be separated from the office of captain-general, so that the intendant shall have authority to direct the affairs of the former independently.]

[The writer proceeds to describe the character of the Tagalog natives, which he paints in gloomy colors.] It is impossible to define either the character of these Tagálos, or their morality—although it can be said that they have none; for, although in outward appearance they profess the Catholic religion, inwardly and in their actions they manifest that they follow no religion. The zeal with which the first conquistadors undertook to instruct them in the true belief has been useless; and the watchful care of the missionaries whom the piety of our kings has not ceased to send to those regions has been of no avail, except to make of their neophytes, instead of true Catholics and useful members of society, a new species of men, who unite the slothfulness of the savages to the vices of civilized peoples. Thus it is that the [267]Tagálos are fickle, vagabonds, full of superstitions, assassins, liars, licentious but without love, adroit thieves; and, in one word, they do not respect even the most sacred of the laws, divine or human. They lose no opportunity to make mischief among the authorities, and between the latter and Spaniards of all classes; and they have the cunning to throw the blame on these last, as being more timid. Moreover, they perjure themselves without the least scruple; their telling the truth depends on their being more or less carefully instructed by the parties to the suit; and unfortunate is he who summons them as his witnesses. They do not understand love, and their sensuality is carried to the extreme; consequently they are cruel fathers and worse husbands, and they have not the least respect or consideration for their wives. Paternal love is a strange thing for them, and therefore when they punish their children they do so barbarously, and if they begin it in the morning they do not finish until night. The same cruel disposition is seen among the schoolmasters who are paid by the government to teach the youth in their villages.

The code of laws for the Indias, considering these Indians as neophytes like those of the Antillas and the Americas, has made them participants in the privileges and liberties granted to those natives; and it exempts them from the penalties of which they render themselves worthy by the atrocious crimes which they continually commit. Incest, for example, is a common vice among them, for which opportunity is given by the little privacy in which the families live; for the mother, daughters, and sisters all sleep in one bed [hacen cama redonda], without any other separation from the men than merely a blanket. [268]It is difficult to prove this crime among them, and only the cura or missionary could rebuke them and apply the proper correction, in their wrongly-understood condition of neophytes, if in confession they should reveal their sin; but, as lying is their dominant vice, they are silent or else deny it, and the cura cannot, even when he knows of it, obtain any satisfaction from them. The capital and its environs are the refuge of the more perverse, who migrate from the provinces and from their villages, in order not to work and to relieve themselves from paying the tribute. There they devote themselves to studies in the colleges of Santo Tomas, San José, and San Juan de Letran, making progress in a short time, and deceiving the professors with their apparent ingenuousness; at the same time they are occupied as servants to the Spaniards and foreigners, but only nominally, since they do not go to their master’s house except for eating, sleeping, and stealing from him (which they do with astonishing dexterity). After a little time, having abused the master’s patience, and having violated his wife, daughters, and other relatives, if he has such (without respecting even those who have not reached the age of puberty), they end by departing with the utmost coolness; and in order to avoid recognition, and so that they cannot be caught if they happen to be pursued, they employ the trick of shaving the head, and, while naked, anointing the entire body with oil, and then take to flight, with no other covering than a mere breech-clout. The poor Spaniard, although he finds that he has been robbed, does not think of resorting to the magistrates to make complaint, for he knows that instead of doing him justice they would, after making him spend much [269]money, sentence him to pay the costs and exculpate the Indian, regarding the latter as a neophyte. Still less does he say a word about the rape, in order not to make public his own dishonor. Let it not be supposed that this occurs only among private persons; for there have been persons in authority who have experienced in their own houses similar acts of insolence from these vicious and immoral neophytes. After these evil deeds, they disappear, as I have said; and in a very short time they are seen returning from Ilocos, Camarines, and Cebú, ordained as clerics, with what sort of character may be understood—now cleansed from all their crimes, and absolved from guilt and penalty, to continue their studies in the colleges. Thus they graduate as bachelors and doctors, and secure curacies, in which they commit the acts of folly which may easily be inferred, and which it would be tedious to explain here; and with their corrupt behavior they set an example to their parishioners of dissoluteness, impiety, and slothfulness.

[The writer then enumerates the good qualities of this people, so far as they go. They are inclined to the arts and sciences, and learn quickly, and their deficiencies therein are due only to their lack of books for their instruction, and tools with which to finish off their work; this is mainly due to their improvidence, “for an Indian, even though he is a doctor and a cura, is unable to save one cuarto for purchasing those things, no matter how cheap they may be; on the other hand, he will, if he needs money for his vices, pledge his breviary or sell his missal.” “Nevertheless, they exercise all the occupations except those of silversmith, tailor, and watch-maker, for no one would trust them [in these];” but [270]lack of tools prevents them from doing as good work as Europeans. They have taste in the fine arts, and almost all the buildings are planned by them. They are excellent artillerists, and a French naval commander (in 1798) thought them better than his own; and are useful in naval fights, on account of their courage and agility. An Indian will in a few days’ practice understand as much of seamanship as a European would gain in twenty years; and many of them have migrated from the islands as seamen on the ships. But they resent being called “negroes,” and in several cases where they have been thus affronted they have mutinied, killed the Europeans, and fled with the ship and cargo. So great has been this migration that in the other colonies of Asia rigorous measures have been taken to stop it, and “in all the ports of India, the entrances and roads are full of gibbets on which men from Manila are hanged, for a warning; but, seeing that this had no effect, all the owners and captains of merchant ships have been compelled by law not to receive on their vessels more than four or six of these Indians.” The Tagálos are free with their money, and readily lend to any European whatever they may possess. They take great care of their fighting cocks (“who are for them actual idols”), are very temperate in eating and drinking, and are never seen intoxicated. They are often devoted to agricultural labor, and will do well in it when they are supplied with better methods and appliances.]

[Some account is given of the Negritos and other wild tribes of Luzón; and it is stated that any colonist who wishes to settle among them will be able to succeed in any agricultural or other enterprise which [271]he may undertake, if he will obtain the consent of the chiefs, pay the savages whom he may employ exactly what he has agreed to give, and not annoy them with matters of religion. As for the civilized Tagálos, their women are entirely different from the men; they are kind, hospitable, and industrious, and, although coquettish, are very modest and decorous in behavior. They sow the rice, and gather all the crops; roll cigars, and weave beautiful fabrics of cotton and abacá; and embroider beautifully, besides making hats, mats, and many other articles. In fine, “if it were possible to put an end to all the men and leave only the women, or rather unite them to other men who would possess their good qualities and think as they do, Filipinas would come to be the most wealthy and fortunate country in the universe.” It is certain that agriculture would be the best mode of life for the Indians, and they ought to be urged to engage in it, after the examples furnished by the Jesuits in Paraguay, the Quakers in America, and other successful colonists. The writer suggests various means to stimulate the Indians to greater industry (especially as the Spaniards cannot undertake work in the fields), and for the formation and management of agricultural enterprises; he would have them well treated, promptly and justly paid, and supplied with house, land, and suitable amusements. It has been a great mistake to prohibit the alcaldes-mayor and other provincial officials from owning estates there, while permitting them to engage in trade; this policy ought to be reversed, and they be obliged to cultivate the land, and prevented from harassing the Indians as they have done. In forming large estates, provision should be made for the homes of [272]the laborers being comfortable, arranged in regular streets, protected as far as possible from the danger of fire, and shaded by trees of useful sorts; and from these should be well isolated the proprietor’s dwelling, sheds, machinery, and other property. Gardens, orchards, fishponds, etc., should be formed; and all appliances should be furnished which are desirable for improving the quantity and quality of the products of the estate, and for providing a safe and abundant supply of food, and of the luxuries which are dear to the heart of the Indian. Careful directions are given for the selection of land, the supply of water, cattle-raising, making of plantations, protection against storms, etc. An interesting account is given of the Chinese in Filipinas, their trade, relations with the Spaniards, the abuses in these, the hatred felt toward them by the Tagálos (resulting mainly from the illicit relations of the Chinese with the Indian women), their mode of life, etc.; they should be compelled to devote themselves only to agriculture and the useful arts, and to abandon commerce and business entirely. They have been very injurious to the interests of the islands, and ought to be expelled from Filipinas, save as they are engaged in handicrafts or the tillage of the soil. The Spaniards ought thus to follow the example of the Dutch in Java and other islands, where the Chinese have made excellent agriculturists and manufacturers of agricultural products, and have enriched both themselves and the Dutch; if they had been thus treated in Filipinas, that country would now be as prosperous and wealthy as are the Dutch colonies, and its trade would be as rich and extensive as that of the Dutch. As it is, enormous sums of money have been [273]carried to Filipinas from España, and spent in the islands, with hardly any return to the mother country; and the greater part of this wealth has been absorbed by the trade with China, and has been stored away in that country.]

[A note at the end of this MS. outlines the author’s plan for the establishment of a banking system at Manila.] [275]

1 The great length of this document obliges us to summarize passages of lesser importance; but as much of the author’s exact language has been retained as possible. 

2 Bernaldez refers to the massacre of foreigners in 1820, and the mutiny under Novales in 1823, both of which are related in the first document of this volume. 

3 In the Archivo general de Indias at Sevilla is a MS. map, drawn (June 20, 1773) by the government engineer at Manila, Miguel A. Gomez, showing “portion of the site on the river of Tanay, indicating the plan of the iron-works for casting anchors and artillery, and the shop for casting the small iron articles which are called in the Philippine archipelago cauas—which are equivalent to kettles, boilers, and frying-pans, and which the Chinese or Sangleys manufacture with so great skill and dexterity.” Gomez estimated that this establishment would cost “at least 175,000 pesos, without reckoning the cost of the dwelling-houses” for officials, artisans, and laborers. 

4 The native name for the annotto (Bixa orellana), the seeds of which produce a yellow substance used for coloring cheese, butter, etc. 

5 Polizon: “a person who embarks by stealth and without a passport, in the ships which sail to America.” (Dominguez.) 

6 “The association of the Audiencia with the governor began in 1527, with Cortes, as the court recognized the impossibility of controlling so great a hero by means of a single, and perhaps insignificant, man. (Roscher, Spanish Colonial system, Bourne’s ed., p. 24, note 5.) 

7 The writer here adds: “This exportation is of very little importance in the markets of Asia, where the more usual and cheaper beverage for the people is Rak [English, “arrack”], or wine made from rice.” 

8 In 1853 a pamphlet was published at Madrid, written by Sinibaldo de Mas, entitled, Articulo sobre las rentas de Filipinas y los medios de aumentarlas,” written for the Boletin Oficial of the Treasury Department.” (Vindel, Catálogo biblioteca filipina, no. 1558.) 

9 “Only since 1843 have the Chinese shops been opened on the same terms as those of other foreigners. But there is no doubt that the Chinese have been a great boon to the colony. They have had, in the main, a civilizing influence on the natives, and have taught them many important things: as the working of iron and the manufacture of sugar from the juice of the sugar-cane. They have also ever been the leaders in commerce and the chief middlemen of the colony; and for this reason mainly they have been deemed an unwelcome necessity, for, without them, trade would almost be brought to a standstill, and, in consequence, labor would suffer and living be rendered dearer to every class. By their superior shrewdness and unscrupulous cunning they have, on the other hand, excited the hatred of the natives, who despise them for their cowardice. Thus, from time to time, the feeling against them is very bitter. Another objection against the Celestial is that he underbids all competitors, working for what others refuse. Furthermore, he spends little, and all that he saves he carries to his own country. Their expulsion, however, would be as unwise as it is impracticable, and the only remedy that meets the case is a proper State-control. The employment of coolie labor, notwithstanding, is at present impossible, on account of the hatred that the lower-class natives feel toward them. In Manila there are at present no less than 40,000 Chinese, while the whole colony contains about 100,000. They have their own courts, their guilds, and secret societies, which are necessary for their self-protection; and they choose representative deputations to represent them in the Government.” (Lala, Philippine Islands, pp. 104–106.)

Le Gentil says (Voyage, ii, p. 101) of the banishment of the Chinese from Manila in 1767 (at which time he was residing there): “I did not know any Spaniard in Manila who did not sincerely regret the departure of the Chinese, and who did not frankly admit that the Philippines would suffer for it, because the Indians are not capable of replacing the Chinese …. The Parian was a sort of market, where could be found provision of everything necessary for living; and it is not without [232]reason that the Spaniards regretted the loss of this laborious people.” 

10 “This spirit of greed compelled the Chinese to abandon in their internal commerce the gold and silver coins which were in general use. The number of those who made counterfeit money, which was continually increasing, permitted no other line of conduct; and money was no longer coined save in copper. This metal, however, having become scarce, in consequence of events which history does not record, the shells so well known under the name of ‘cauris’ [English, ‘cowries’] were mingled with the copper coins; but the government, having observed that the people were dissatisfied with so frail an article, ordered that the copper utensils throughout the entire empire should be given up to the mints. As this ill-judged expedient did not furnish resources adequate to the public needs, the government caused about four hundred temples of Foé to be demolished, the idols in which were melted down. Finally the court paid the magistrates and the army partly in copper and partly in paper; but the people rebelled against so dangerous innovation, and it became necessary to give it up. Since that time, which was three centuries ago, the coinage of copper is the only legal one.” (Raynal, Établissemens et commerce des Européens, i, pp. 641, 642). 

11 Spanish, temporalidades: referring to the bureau in charge of the property formerly belonging to the Jesuits. 

12 Thus in text, but evidently a clerical error by Bernaldez’s amanuensis. A similar discrepancy is seen in the estimate of the trader’s profits, below. 



The documents in this volume are obtained from the following sources:

1. Events in Filipinas.—Compiled from Montero y Vidal’s Historia de Filipinas, tomo ii, pp. 360–573; iii, pp. 6–32.

2. Remarks on the Phillippine Islands, 1819–22.—Reprinted from the original publication (Calcutta, 1828), from a copy in the possession of Edward E. Ayer, Chicago.

3. Reforms needed in Filipinas.—From two original MSS. in the collection of Edward E. Ayer.

4. Representation of Filipinas in Cortes.—Compiled from various sources, as indicated in preliminary note.

5. List of archbishops.—Compiled from various sources, as indicated in first paragraph. [277]



Representation of Filipinas in Cortes. [Compiled from various sources.]
List of the archbishops of Manila, 1581–1898. [Compiled from various sources.]

Sources: These appendices are obtained from various sources, as indicated therein; they are compiled by James Alexander Robertson. [279]



Preliminary Note: The account of the first two Cortes is drawn largely from notes made by James A. LeRoy from Diario de las sessiones de las Cortes generales y extraordinarias, and other sources, and kindly sent by him to the Editors. For the first Cortes see also Montero y Vidal, Historia general, ii, pp. 388–390, 392, 396–398, 400–409, 411–413,422–435, and Guia oficial de España, 1813, pp. 21, 22, where the Philippine deputies are named. For the second Cortes, see also Montero y Vidal, ut supra, ii, pp. 444–452, 457–462, 476–481. For the third Cortes, see Montero y Vidal, ut supra, ii, pp. 544, 545, 552–560, 563–573; and Filipinas y su representacion en Cortes (Madrid, February 8, 1836), which although published anonymously is by Camba.


The Cortes of 1810–1813

Three times in their history have the Philippines had representation in the Spanish national Cortes,1 [280]namely, for the years 1810–1813, 1820–1823, and 1834–1837. In the first two periods is emphasized the backwardness of the Philippines politically as compared with the Spanish-American colonies. In all three periods, one cannot point to any single great measure that was enacted solely at the initiative of the Philippine representatives (unless with the possible exception of the suppression of the Acapulco galleon), and indeed, not to a great many in which they took part.2

With Fernando virtually a prisoner in France (where he remained for five years), the nationalists in Spain being without a ruler, since they refused to consider Joseph Bonaparte as king, organized a provisional government known as the central governing assembly (Junta central), with headquarters in the south. This Junta, taking the necessary steps for the reorganization of government, and the calling of a Cortes, proceeded, on June 25, 1809, to rehabilitate the old Consejo de España, and on January 29, 1810, to constitute the supreme Consejo de Regencia. The delegates to the first session of the Cortes, for which final orders were issued by decree of June 18, 1810, and in which, by a decree of January 22, 1829, all [281]the Spanish domain was to have equality of representation, assembled on the island of León during the month of August, 1810. On account of the distance of the American countries and the Philippines and the impossibility of regularly-appointed delegates reaching Spain in time for the opening of the session, substitutes were chosen from residents of those countries then in the Peninsula. Consequently, at the opening of the Cortes, September 24, 1810, the Philippines were represented by Pedro Pérez de Tagle, an officer in the corps of the Spanish Royal Guards, and Dr. José Manuel Couto, prebend of La Puebla. The election at Manila (held by order of the Regency, February 14, 1810), resulted in the choice of Ventura de los Reyes, a wealthy merchant of Manila, and on the whole an active representative, who, despite his seventy years, set out immediately for Cádiz. The two substitutes above mentioned took but little part in affairs.3

Several general measures enacted by the Cortes [282]touch the Philippines incidentally.4 The first matter, however, specifically connected with the Philippines was the receipt by the Cortes (March 16, 1811) of the report of the governor of the Philippines (dated August 8, 1809) in regard to the French vessel “Mosca,” which had been captured by the parish priest of Batangas (Fray Melchor Fernandez), and the despatches carried on that vessel. The reading on April 26, 1812, of the proposed decree prescribing the manner of holding elections in the regular Cortes to be convened in 1813, aroused lengthy discussion.5 On May 6, Reyes moved that a special form of election be granted for the Philippines because of their distance and the character of their inhabitants. The islands had neither the funds nor the men to send by which equality of representation [283]would be justified, and he requested that it only be declared that they must not send less than two. An amendment offered by the committee on the Constitution proposed that to the instructions regarding the elections in Ultramar be added a clause to meet Reyes’s wishes, but the matter was hotly contested by the American representatives who feared that such a clause might sometime lead to the cutting down of their own representation, and as a consequence the proposal of the committee was not voted on.6

In January, 1813, after recommendation by the committee on Ultramar, it was resolved to grant the petition of the board (mesa) of the Misericordia of Manila (which had been hanging fire in the Cortes since September 25, 1812), asking for certain reforms, among them that the number of persons voting for the electors of the board itself be reduced.7 On January 6, 1813, the proposed ordinances for the hospice for the poor at Manila (the establishment of which was provided for by royal order of December [284]27, 1806), were declared unconstitutional by the committee on Ultramar,8 and that committee’s report was adopted. A minute in the records of March 11, 1813, shows that the suppression of the brandy monopoly had been decreed by the governor of the Philippines and that it could be manufactured freely in the provinces of Tondo, Cavite, Bulacan, and Pampanga.

By far the most important measure affecting the Philippines, however, was the suppression of the Acapulco galleon.9 The discussion on the matter was lengthy and bitter, and arose over one of twelve propositions submitted by Reyes on February 11, 1813, to the effect that the determined suppression of the Acapulco galleon be published, and in its place those engaged in that commerce be allowed to fit up private vessels at their own cost to continue the trade with Nueva España, through the ports of Acapulco, San Blas, or any other, under the old terms of 500,000 pesos for the outgoing voyage and 1,000,000 for the return, and a lowering of the duties by one-half. The matter was debated in the presence of the secretaries of the Peninsula and Ultramar, and after full [285]discussion, in which many of the delegates took part, and in which the American delegates generally favored a liberal policy for the Philippines, the decree suppressing the galleon was finally issued on September 14, 1813.10

The special session of the Cortes closed on the date of the decree above, and the regular session opened at Cádiz, either in the latter part of September or the first part of October. On October 4, the last meeting was held in Cádiz and opened again in the island of León because of yellow fever in the former place. On the eighth of that month, Reyes presented three plans for the benefit of the agriculture, industry, commerce, and navigation of the Philippines. On the twenty-ninth of October meetings at the island of León were suspended, and resumed again in Madrid, on January 15, 1814. Fernando VII, released by order of Napoleon, after the disastrous campaign conducted by Joseph in Spain, abolished the Cortes by his decree of May 4, 1814, and on the publication of this decree in Madrid, on the thirteenth many of the members of the Cortes were arrested, all the acts of the constitutional government were declared null and void, the Inquisition reëstablished, and absolutism was again proclaimed in [286]Spain. On the publication of the decree in the Philippines, the Ilocans, deeming it only a ruse of the governor, revolted, sacked churches and convents, and destroyed public records. Their insurrection was directed chiefly against their own principales and their wives.11


The Cortes of 1820–1823

After vainly endeavoring to rule as an absolute monarch, Fernando VII was compelled to convoke the Cortes by his decree of March 6, 1820.12 On [287]the twenty-second the regular session of the Cortes for 1820–1821 was formally summoned, the colonies being allowed to be represented by substitutes pending the arrival of regularly-elected representatives. At the first preliminary meeting of June 26, the two Philippine substitutes,13 Jose María Arnedo and Manuel Felix Camus y Herrera, presented their credentials. The Cortes were declared open on July 9. Matters of trade and commerce, involving the question of duties,14 were of paramount interest, so far as the Philippines are concerned, although the matters of elections, revenues, and ecclesiastical affairs were debated at some length. From July 18 to October 19, were considered at intervals the privileges and monopolies of the Compañía de Filipinas, which were abolished by a decree of the latter date.15 Several [288]decrees and orders of November 9 (on which date the first session of the Cortes ended), affecting trade and looking toward the development of the colonies, were issued.16

At the opening of the new session of the Cortes, the Philippine substitutes of the previous session held over.17 An order18 of March 22 decided that [289]the vice-royalties, captaincies-general, etc., were not to be filled for stated periods, but incumbents were to hold them at the will of the king. Of great importance was the approval on June 30, of a petition presented by Arnedo on June 16 asking for direct mails between Spain and the Philippines under charge of the navy department. On that same date the report of the committee on Hacienda on the estimated budget for the Ministry of Ultramar for 1822 (over 330,000 reals more than that of 1821), aroused considerable discussion, especially among the American delegates.19 A decree of June 29 provided for public schools and provincial universities, of which Manila was to have one. This decree provided for schools and courses much ahead of anything in the islands, but it remained a dead letter because of the [290]speedy suppression of the constitution.20 This session of the Cortes closed on June 30.

The preliminary meeting of a special session was held on September 22, 1821, at which the above two Philippine substitutes were approved.21 Camus y Herrera was one of a committee chosen on the twenty-third, to inform the king that the Cortes was ready to open the session, which accordingly was opened next day. On November 4, the Philippine government and governor were arraigned by representative Lallave of Veracruz for electing only four instead of the twenty-five representatives to whom they were entitled. Discussion of this matter resulted in the Cortes directing the Minister of Ultramar (February 11, 1822), that the Philippines, notwithstanding claims of distance and poverty, were to elect their whole quota to Cortes. At the secret session of February 12, 1822, it was decided to allow Arnedo and [291]Camus y Herrera (in view of a petition presented by them on the eighth, and because of their pressing need), to draw a sum sufficient to meet their needs and the debts that they had been obliged to contract in the performance of their duties, from the money sent by the provincial deputation of Manila (24,500 pesos) for the regularly-elected Philippine representatives of the next session. This special session closed February 14.

The first preliminary meeting of the regular session was held February 15, at which Vicente Posada, a former magistrate of the Manila Audiencia, presented himself as a regularly-elected representative from the Philippines. He was not, however, allowed to take his seat in this session, which opened formally on March 7, and closed on July 30, as it was claimed that his resignation had not been confirmed and that he was consequently still a government employe.22 During this session, a clause of a decree of June 28 ordered the encouragement of visits to Cuba, Porto Rico, and the Philippines by naturalists for the purpose of study.

At the first preliminary meeting of the special session, held October 1, 1822, Francisco Bringas y Taranco, ex-alcalde-mayor of Ilocos, the deputy elect [292]for Nueva Segovia, Manuel Sáenz de Vizmanos, senior accountant of the Tribunal de Cuentas of the Philippines, and Posada, presented their credentials, which were approved on October 3, although Posada was again contested. At the preliminary meeting held on the fourth complaint was made that the Philippines had elected but four deputies instead of twenty-five.23 The session which opened on October 7 closed on February 19, 1823, without any action having been taken by the Philippine representatives.

The regular session opened on March 1, 1823, at Madrid, but the absolutists gaining control through the invasion of the French, nothing was done in this session, and the Cortes, which had been compelled to flee first to Sevilla and then to Cádiz, were finally dissolved by Fernando on October 1, who declared all their acts from March 7, 1820, to that time null and void. Posada was one of those condemned by Fernando after his entrance into Madrid, for his liberal tendencies. By decree of December 25, 1823, Fernando communicated to America and the Philippines the reëstablishment of absolutism, the suppression of the Constitution of 1812, and the abolition of all the organisms inaugurated during the constitutional régime.24 [293]


The Cortes of 1834–1837

The third Cortes of 1834–37 were called after the death of Fernando VII, which occurred September 29, 1833, when the liberals again demanded concessions and a constitutional government.25 The ship “Santa Ana” sailing from Cádiz, August 28, 1834, reached Manila with official orders and the summons to the Cortes;26 which having been called for July 24, 1834 (by decree of May 10), had already convened. The election for the Philippine representatives (March 1, 1835)27 resulted in the choice [294]of Brigadier Andrés García Camba,28 and Licentiate Juan Francisco Lecaros (or Lecaroz)29—the first a resident of Manila (formerly a resident in Nueva España), and the second the Madrid agent for the Manila Ayuntamiento. Camba sailed for Cádiz on the “Santa Ana” on March 21, and arrived in Spain August 20, 1835, after the end of the first session of the Cortes. That session imposed a special tax on certain classes of financial documents, which affected all the Spanish domains; and which was sanctioned by the regent, May, 1835, and communicated to the Philippines on June 2.

The new session was set in a meeting of the Consejo de Ministros (September 28, 1835) for November 16, 1835. The first preliminary meeting was held on November 12, at which the Philippine representatives presented their credentials, being duly confirmed on the meeting of the fourteenth, although Camba was contested by one Manuel Cacho of Manila. [295]The formal opening of the session occurred on the sixteenth, and on the twenty-fourth, Camba and Lecaros took the oath, the former being placed on the committee on Etiquette. On the occasion of the vote of confidence in the government, the Philippine representatives spoke on the rumors of the transfer of the Philippines to a foreign government, stating that such rumors had already been reported in foreign newspapers, as well as the power to whom the transfer was to be made and the sum to be paid. Such a sale they could not believe would be the reward of so many years of loyalty to the Spanish government. In the discussion of the election law for the Cortes, the government and the Cortes came to a deadlock, and the Cortes were dissolved by the government. Hence nothing was accomplished during this session.30

A royal decree of the date when the Cortes were [296]dissolved, ordered the new Cortes to assemble at Madrid, March 22, article 5 of the decree specifying that elections should be held in the provinces of Ultramar on receipt of the decree. Consequently, at this session, which lasted from March 22 until May 23, when it was again dissolved, the Philippines had no representation.

A decree of May 24 ordered a new session for August 20, at which the Philippines were to have four representatives, the officials evidently not taking into account the distance of the Philippines from Spain, for it would be manifestly impossible for any representative to arrive from the Philippines for that session or even for the one of March, 1837. The election at Manila held in 1836 resulted in the reelection of Camba and Lecaros. On August 13, a royal decree (in consequence of the mutiny of La Granja) ordered the publication of the Constitution of 1812 until the Cortes clearly manifested their will or drew up a new constitution. Another decree of August 21 called the general Cortes for October 24, in accordance with the rules of the Constitution of 1812; and one of September 28 suppressed the Real Consejo de España é Indias. At the secret session of the Cortes on January 16, 1837, a proposition for special laws to govern Ultramar was made, being passed to the proper committee. On February 10 the committee having in charge the drafting of a new constitution, presented a plan for the provinces to be ruled by special laws, in accordance with which their delegates were not to sit in the Cortes. On March 9, 1837, the elections at Manila resulted in Camba and Luis Prudencio Alvarez y Tejero,31 formerly of the [297]Manila Audiencia, and a resident of Manila for thirteen years, being elected. The latter arrived in Spain after the passing of the law excluding the Philippine representation from the Cortes. A royal order of May 31, 1837, presented the method to be observed in the provision of alcaldes-mayor for the Philippines. On June 18, the new constitution was promulgated in Madrid, article 2 of which decreed that Ultramar should be governed by special laws.32 Since that time the Philippines have had no representation in Cortes.33 [298]

1 The Cortes, as first known by the Spaniards, contained three divisions, the three estates; the ones called in the three periods above-mentioned had but one chamber; the present Cortes contains two houses, the senate and the congress or house of deputies or representatives. The senate consists of three divisions: senators in their own right (the heir presumptive, the grandees, archbishops, etc.; life senators appointed by the crown; and those elected by the people, half of whom are removable every five years. Members to the lower house are elected for five years by electors chosen by the people. No Cortes was held from 1713–1789, and from the latter year until 1810. 

2 For a good account of this period in Spain, which was one of great confusion, see E. W. Latimer’s Spain in the nineteenth century (Chicago, 1898, 3d ed.) The machinations of Napoleon and the other events leading up to the establishment of the Cortes of 1810–1813 are well and concisely narrated. See also Hume, Modern Spain (New York, 1900). 

3 The latter, indeed, was granted permission (January 4, 1811) to go to Veracruz for his health; and on July 22, 1811, permission was given to the former to go to the Philippines on private business, although he was later forbidden to leave until the return of his colleague, as his absence before that time would leave the Philippines without representation. The request was renewed on the arrival of Reyes (December 6, 1811), and on the latter’s assumption of his seat (December 9), Perez de Tagle was allowed to leave. On September 19, 1813, a discourse was pronounced at Manila by José de Vergara, “deputy-elect for the province of Manila to the general Cortes,” and published in that year at Sampaloc. The election of deputies in that year was regulated by a junta composed of Governor Gardoqui, Archbishop Juan de Zúñiga, Manuel Díaz Condé, and three others; one of their decisions exempted the very poor in the community from contributing to the fund raised for paying the traveling and other expenses of the deputies to the Cortes. (Vindel, Catálogo biblioteca filipina, nos. 1874, 1875.) 

4 Such were the decree of October 5, 1810, confirming the essential unity and equality of all parts of the Spanish domain; the abolition of the quicksilver monopoly, January 26, 1811; the provisional creation of a Consejo de Estado to consist of twenty members (six from Ultramar), on January 21, 1812, although the constitution (adopted March 18, 1812) called for one with forty members (twelve from Ultramar): the creation of the Secretaría del Despacho de la Gobernación de Ultramar (April 2, 1812), and the establishment of the Tribunal Supremo de Justicia, and the suppression of the Consejos de Castilla, Indias, and Hacienda (all of them provided for in the constitution); and the suppression of the Inquisition (February 22, 1813). The law of November 9, 1813, abolishing personal services for Indians and regulating public works, seems to have been intended only for America. 

5 February 20, 1812, was the last meeting on the island of León, the Cortes assembling on the twenty-fourth at the church of San Felipe Neri, at Cádiz. 

6 The method of election for the Cortes of 1813 (decree of May 23, 1812) provided for a preliminary election board for each colonial province consisting of the provincial head, the archbishop, bishop, or acting archbishop, the intendant (if there were one), the senior alcalde, the senior regidor, the syndic procurator-general, and two commoners (these last to be chosen by the others). One representative was to be chosen for each 60,000 people. (See the essential clauses of this decree in Montero y Vidal, Historia general, ii, pp. 406, 407.) On the same day was also decreed the creation of provincial deputations, of which one was specified for Manila. In this session of Cortes also, the reorganization of the audiencias was decreed, but the Philippine representative seems to have taken no part in the debate. 

7 Trouble had arisen over the administration by the board of the obras pias which it was usual to loan out to those interested in the galleon trade. 

8 These ordinances were unconstitutional because control of the hospice was vested in a board headed by the captain-general, while by the constitution such organizations were now to be controlled by the ayuntamientos and provincial deputations. The despatch regarding this matter was sent to the Cortes by the secretary of Ultramar, November 27, 1812. 

9 On July 7, 1810, the governor of the Philippines proposed the suppression of the galleon, and requested permission for the inhabitants of the Philippines to ship goods in Spanish bottoms not in excess of 1,000,000 pesos. The suppression was resolved upon by the Cortes by article 3 of the decree of October 8, 1811, regarding commerce. 

10 This decree (which is given by Montero y Vidal, Historia general, li, pp. 412, 413) states that the inhabitants of the Philippines may trade in Chinese and other Asiatic goods in private Spanish bottoms with the ports of Acapulco and San Blas in Nueva España, under the old terms of 500,000 pesos for the outgoing, and 1,000,000 pesos for the return voyage. If the port of Acapulco be closed, they may trade at Sonsonate. For four years the lower rates of duties granted by Cárlos IV by decree of October, 1806, are continued. Boletas, or tickets granting lading space, are to be furnished no longer. 

11 In accordance with a royal order of June 17, commanding the representatives of the colonies to report the petitions pending, or which had not been moved, that had for their object the welfare of the colonies, Reyes petitioned the suppression of the Acapulco galleon; permission of 1,000,000 pesos for the outgoing, and 2,000,000 pesos for the return voyage; unlimited extension of the lower duties conceded October 4, 1806; one or two Peruvian ports open to the commerce of the islands; that natives of the islands be allowed to export goods in Spanish bottoms to any point of the Spanish monarchy free of export and import duties; trade on the northwest coast of America with Spaniards; and that the permission be conceded to bring back all unsold goods (in addition to the amount of imports allowed), on payment to the treasury of a 6 per cent duty. The answers to these requests were as follows: the Acapulco ship was suppressed by order of April 23, 1815; permission of export to the value of 750,000 pesos; the ports of Callao and Guayaquil thrown open to Philippine trade; traffic with the Spaniards on the northwest coast of America; permission to bring back unsold goods to the extent of one-third the amount of imports allowed, paying ten per cent duty for such excess; and free trade for Philippine products at any port of the monarchy in Spanish bottoms for ten years. 

12 On the seventh he took the oath to observe the Constitution of 1812; and on the tenth, by a decree ordered the reëstablishment of the Secretaría del Despachó de la Gobernación[, the first acts of which were the promulgation of the Constitution of 1812, [287]and the reëstablishment of all the organisms created by the Cortes of 1810–1813. 

13 Apparently appointed by the Secretary of Ultramar. Their credentials were approved at the third preliminary meeting of July 5 or 6. 

14 A general decree of October 5, 1820, ordered a uniform and general schedule of duties for the Peninsula and Ultramar; but this law was modified by another law of December 20, 1821, recognizing the impracticability of uniformity of duties for Spain and the colonies, and providing that the schedule be uniform except for the differences rendered necessary in the provinces of Ultramar. 

15 The secretary of Hacienda considered the privileges of the company for the importation of cotton goods as unconstitutional and contrary to the prosperity of national manufactures. At the meeting of August 18, it developed that the company had transferred its monopoly to a foreign merchant of Cádiz. The company was allowed to present its argument, but the report of the committees on Commerce and Hacienda was adopted. Later the company presented a petition requesting the liquidation of the government’s indebtedness to it, the privilege of selling its stock of cotton goods, and various other concessions incident to the closing up of its affairs. This petition, sent to the Cortes by the secretary of Hacienda, was referred to the committee on Commerce on November 2. On the fifth, a petition was presented by the Philippine representatives and Gregorio Gonzales Azaolo, of Sevilla, asking that the prohibition of the importation of cotton goods should not affect the Philippines until the industry was developed or established in those islands. This petition having been referred to the committees on Commerce and Hacienda, their report on November 8 recommended the opening of the Oriental trade to all Spaniards trading in Spanish bottoms. This recommendation was embodied in article 3 of the decree of November 9, specifying the kinds of goods which Spanish ships trading by the Cape of Good Hope could introduce into Spain or Spanish America. 

16 The decrees of the Diarios de las Cortes show no decree of this date confirming a previous decree of March 7, 1820, granting exemption of duties for ten years on natural and industrial products of the Philippines, when imported in Spanish bottoms into the Peninsula, as declared by Montero y Vidal. The decree of December 21, 1820, providing for the abolition of the monopoly on tobacco and salt after March 1, 1821, and providing customs and consumption duties, seems not to have affected the Philippines. 

17 In October, 1820, the preliminary board for the election of representatives was organized in Manila, but inasmuch as the elections were not held until after the Constitution had been sworn to in Manila in May, 1821 (and later in the provinces), no regularly-elected representatives were present at the second session. 

18 Wrongly called a decree by Montero y Vidal. This order was addressed to the Secretary of War in answer to a question raised by the Council of War. 

19 The special discussion arose over the item of 50,000 reals for missions and a note in the report reflecting on the native clergy in the Philippines. Some of the Americans, who were quite fully imbued with the free thought of the French philosophical school, declared for the suppression of the missionaries (meaning friars), inasmuch as they were useless and even harmful. The committee answered this by asserting that the missionaries in the Philippines were used by the government as civil and political agents, and that they did do much good work in their own legitimate line. The passage concerning the incapacity of the native clergy was meant to apply to the Philippines alone, but if desired it could be removed as it was not essential to the report. An American representative moved that the 50,000 reals be used in the establishment of normal schools in Ultramar. The Philippine representatives seem to have taken no part in the debate except that Camus y Herrera moved that the obnoxious clause concerning the Filipino clergy be stricken out. The report was accepted as read. 

20 Each university was to have a public library, a drawing school, a chemical laboratory, cabinets of physics, natural history, and industrial products, another of models of machines, a botanical garden, and an experiment farm. The university to be established in Manila was to have theological and law courses for the doctorate. Manila was also to have a medical school, a school for veterinary medicine, a school of fine arts, and commercial and nautical schools. Professorships were to be filled by competition, and those for the Philippines were to be examined by persons designated by the Subdirection of Studies in Mexico. Girls were to be taught to read, write, and cipher; while the older female students were to be taught the work suitable to their sex. This matter of education for girls was left to the provincial deputations. 

21 On the twenty-third there was a discussion as to the legality of the substitutes for the representatives of Ultramar being allowed to hold over; and it was finally declared that only those for the Philippines and Peru could sit during this session. 

22 This exclusion was in accordance with a decision of the committee on Credentials handed in February 11, 1822, to the effect that government employes did not cease, to be such until their resignations were accepted by the government. Posada did not present his credentials at the meeting of February 15, declaring that they had been robbed with his baggage en route from Cádiz to Madrid. He did present them, however, at the next meeting of February 20. At the third and fourth preliminary meetings (February 22 and 24) the matter was debated, and he was excluded on the grounds of being still a government employe. 

23 Foreman states wrongly (p. 362, ed. of 1906) that seventeen deputies were elected and sat during the Cortes of 1820–23, and he names eight of them. He may have confused the names of electors with those of representatives. The four elected (of whom only three are known) were perhaps elected for the districts of the archiepiscopal see and the three suffragan sees of the Philippines; although Montero y Vidal says that both Sáenz de Vizmanos and Posada were elected from Nueva Cáceres. 

24 Although a provincial deputation had been organized in Manila in 1822, almost its only act was to petition (April 12, 1823) for more missionaries. 

25 Fernando’s infant daughter, Isabel II, ascended the throne under the regency of her mother María Cristina. Through the efforts of the liberals, six important decrees were passed March 24, 1834: suppression of the Consejo de Estado, during the minority of the queen; suppression of the Consejos de Castilla and de Indias, in whose place was established a Tribunal Superior de España é Indias; suppression of the Consejo Supremo de Guerra, and in its place the establishment of the Tribunal Supremo de Guerra y Marina y de Extranjería; suppression of the Consejo Supremo de Hacienda, replacing it by a Tribunal Supremo de Hacienda; an order to the Secretary of the Despacho de Gracia y Justicia to propose the new organization of the Consejo Real de las Ordenes; and the institution of a Consejo Real de España é Indias to have general supervision of American and Philippine matters. 

26 The first news of reform and the fact that the new Cortes were to be summoned was received unofficially at Manila by a United States ship sailing from Cádiz in June, 1834, and reaching Manila toward the end of the same year. 

27 No provision was made in the third Cortes for substitute representation for Ultramar (except in the decree of August 21, 1836, calling a Cortes for October 24 under the rules of the Constitution of 1812), which is in point with the ignorance manifested throughout this period by the officials at Madrid with regard to the Philippines. This accounts for the islands having no representation for some of the sessions of the Cortes. 

28 Andrés García Camba resided in Manila during 1825–35, and became so popular that he was elected a deputy to the Spanish Cortes; he was afterward (August, 1837–December, 1838) governor of the Philippines, and wrote a book (published at Cádiz, 1839) regarding his experiences while holding that office. Himself liberally inclined, he was constantly opposed by reactionary influences. Although his name does not appear in the pamphlet Filipinas y su representación en Cortes, he is generally considered as its author; and he alludes to it in the memoir above mentioned. (Vindel, Cat. bib. filip., nos. 1881, 1886.) 

29 Foreman says that Lecaros was a mestizo; and Montero y Vidal that he was a Filipino lawyer. The board of electors was mainly composed of peninsulars. 

30 Camba proposed (Filipinas y su representación en Cortes, 1836) a special mode of election to Cortes for the Philippines, which was to be by the Manila Ayuntamiento, as that was the only political organization in the islands worth mentioning, and was in direct contact with affairs. The law to be adopted for Ultramar, Camba argued, must take into account the condition of the country and the inhabitants. During this session, the Philippine representatives presented two petitions to the Secretario, del Despacho de Hacienda, asking in one for a moderation of the excessive duties on the introduction of Spanish brandy into the Philippines, and in the other the sending of few pensioners and subaltern employes to the islands, as this was a prejudice to the native Philippine Spaniards. Lecaros presented a plan to Mendizábal, the provisional president of the Consejo de Ministros, for the suppression of the monopoly on tobacco in the Philippines, but Mendizábal took measures to make the monopoly more remunerative to the state. See Montero y Vidal, Historia general, ii. pp. 554, 555, note. 

31 He wrote Memoria sobre las Islas Filipinas (Valencia, 1842). 

32 July 31, 1837, the new commercial treaty made September 22, 1836, between the governor of the Philippines and the sultan of Joló was referred to the committees on State and Commerce, was reported on favorably on October 4, and was accordingly approved on the twelfth of October. This treaty stipulated that every three-masted schooner porting at Joló with Chinese passengers from Manila was to pay 2,000 pesos fuertes, and lesser boats in proportion to their size. As the most important cargo ever sent to Joló from Manila never exceeded 2,500 pesos in value, it is hard to see the value of this treaty so greatly lauded in Madrid. No Joloan vessels went to Manila. In this matter the officials showed a woful ignorance of the Philippines, the minister of the navy stating that all vessels stopped at Joló on their way to the Philippines. This treaty, as well as the one made by the governor of Zamboanga with the chief of Maluso near Basilan, only made the Moros bolder in their piracy. See Montero y Vidal, Historia general, ii, pp. 557–560. 

33 On May 25, 1869, an amendment was presented by Julián Pellón y Rodriguez in the Spanish Cortes demanding that parliamentary representation be granted to Filipinas. Among the signers to this amendment were Victor Balaguer and Francisco Javier Moya. (Vindel, Cat. bib. filip., no. 1883.) 



The authorities used in the following chronological list of the archbishops of Manila are as follows: San Antonio, Chronicas; Zúñiga, Historia general; Delgado, Historia; Buzeta y Bravo, Diccionario; Ferrando y Fonseca, Historia de los padres dominicos; Montero y Vidal, Historia general; various copies of the Guia; the Reports of the Philippine Commission; and some minor works.

SALAZAR, DOMINGO DE, O.P.—Born at Rioja, in 1512; takes Dominican habit at convent of San Esteban, Salamanca; becomes master in theology; missionary in Nueva España for 40 years; goes to Spain as procurator general for his province, and preaches before Felipe II, in favor of the Indians; proposed as first bishop of the Philippines in 1578 and consecrated at Madrid, 1579; arrives at Manila in March, 1581, with two Jesuits, two coadjutors, eight Franciscans, and one Dominican; erects cathedral of Manila, Dec. 21, 1581, by virtue of bull of Gregory XIII, as suffragan to the see of Mexico; celebrates provincial synod (1582–86), with attendance of 90 ecclesiastics and 6 seculars (to discuss both ecclesiastical and secular matters); tries to enforce episcopal visit on the regulars, thus raising the question in the Philippines that was so often to convulse those islands both in ecclesiastical and secular circles; [299]royal Audiencia founded partly on account of his petition; defends natives against encomenderos; aids greatly in the building of the cathedral and in the church of the Dominicans, as well as the hospital for the natives, and the college of Santa Potenciana; quarrels with Gomez Perez Dasmariñas, by whom the Audiencia had been suppressed in obedience to royal commands; goes to Spain in 1591 (leaving his companion Salvatierra in charge), to seek royal redress, and secures reëstablishment of Audiencia, and complete royal favor, although opposed by the governor and the Augustinians; procures elevation of Manila into a metropolitan see, with three suffragan churches; designated as first archbishop by king, but dies Dec. 4, 1594, at college of Santo Tomás at Madrid, before the papal bulls arrive, aged 82; hot-headed and impetuous, and apt to meddle too freely in secular affairs, but a worker. See the many documents in our series by Salazar, and those containing matter in regard to him.

SANTIBAÑEZ, IGNACIO, O.S.F.Native of Búrgos; guardian of the province of Búrgos, and later provincial; preacher to Felipe II; presented as first archbishop, June 17, 1595; consecrated in Nueva España in 1596; delays going to the Philippines until 1598 because the bulls of the pallium are not correct in all details; takes possession of his see, May 28, 1598; immediately erects the cathedral into a metropolitan church, with three suffragan sees (Cebú, with Pedro de Agurto, O.S.A., as bishop; Nueva Cáceres, with Miguel Benavides, O.P., as bishop; and Nueva Segovia, with Francisco Ortega, O.S.A., as bishop), by virtue of the bull of Clement VII, dated Aug. 14, 1595; Audiencia reëstablished during his time; dies [300]from dysentery, Aug. 14, 1598, after term of 2 months and 17 days; buried in cathedral; funeral sermon preached by Pedro de Agurto, O.S.A., bishop of Cebú.


BENAVIDES, MIGUEL, O.P.—Native of Carrion de los Condes, where he was born of illustrious parents; takes the Dominican habit in San Pablo at Valladolid, where he also becomes a collegiate at the college of San Gregorio; reader of theology; goes to Manila with the first Dominican mission in 1587; spends a short time in the Chinese missions, whence he is exiled; helps promote building of Chinese hospital in Manila; elected procurator general for his order and accompanies Salazar to Spain; there gains three missions, and an increase in the commerce; elected first bishop of Nueva Segovia; consecrated in Nueva España, in 1597; arrives at Manila, 1598; takes possession of bishopric, 1599; presented as archbishop, 1601; takes possession of Manila see, 1603, the king defraying the cost of the bulls, on account of Benavides’s poverty; by decree of Sept. 9, 1603, gives administration of the Japanese in Manila to the Franciscans; partly responsible for the Chinese massacre of 1603 (see the various documents in our series); in response to a royal decree ordering all natives to take a new oath of allegiance to Spain, takes possession of all the natives in the name of the crown of Castilla and Leon; dies on St. Anne’s day, July 26, 1605; buried in Dominican church; leaves bequest for foundation of Dominican college (San Tomás); a generous alms-giver. See documents on the foundation of San Tomás.


VAZQUEZ DE MERCADO, DR. DIEGO—Native of Arévalo, in Castilla la Vieja; related to the family of the Ronquillos; obtains degree licentiate in canons in university of Mexico; becomes secular priest, goes to Philippines with Salazar, where he becomes his lawyer and acts as dean of Manila cathedral for sixteen years; in 1597 goes to Nueva España, to assume the curacy of Acapulco; in Nueva España given the degree of Doctor of canon law from the university of Mexico; resigns his office as dean of Manila during the sojourn of Santibañez in Nueva España; in 1600, presented as bishop of Mechoacán, where he serves three years; Oct. 22, 1603, presented as first bishop of Yucatan, and receives necessary bulls in Campeche; consecrated in Mexico, Jan. 13, 1604, and governs his bishopric for three years; in 1608, presented as archbishop of Manila; takes possession of see, on eve of Corpus Christi, 1610; completes building of cathedral by means of his own funds and contributions of the inhabitants of Manila; builds a chapel in the collateral nave on epistle side of cathedral, for his own burial and that of the prebendaries of the cathedral; enacts various acts for the good government of the cathedral; dies June 12, 1616; buried in chapel.

VACANT SEE.—The archbishopric is governed by Pedro de Arce, O.S.A., by virtue of a brief of Paul V, which is delivered to the ecclesiastical cabildo by the Audiencia; governs for a period of more than four years.

GARCIA SERRANO, MIGUEL, O.S.A.—Native of Madrid or of Chinchilla; goes to the Philippines in one of the early missions; becomes prior of Manila and provincial of his province, and is elected procurator [302]to Spain; there presented as bishop of Nueva Segovia; consecrated in Nueva España in 1616; goes to the Philippines the same year and governs his bishopric for two and one-half years, presented as archbishop, in 1618; takes possession of his see, Aug. 24, 1619, having received the pallium at the church of Nuestra Señora de Guia, Aug. 1 of that year; during his term, the nuns of St. Clare arrive at Manila, whom he aids greatly; obtains brief (1625) from Urban VIII, allowing the feast of Corpus Christi to be celebrated at a more opportune season, but this brief was never carried out; tries to enforce episcopal visit of regular parish priests, but opposed vigorously by regulars who threaten to resign curacies, and question is finally submitted to king and pope for decision; holy sacrament stolen from cathedral in 1628,1 and due partly to his grief over this calamity, Garcia Serrano dies on Corpus Christi day, June 14 (Montero y Vidal says June 6), 1629, at age of 60.

VACANT SEE.—On the death of Garcia Serrano, the ecclesiastical cabildo and the bishop of Nueva Segovia, Hernando Guerrero, O.S.A., go to law in regard to the government ad interim of the archbishopric, the latter claiming it by virtue of the brief of Paul V, since Pedro de Arce, O.S.A., has resigned his right. The litigation lasts until Jan. 29, 1630, when Arce assumes the government by decree of the royal Audiencia, and although he has continual suits [303]he maintains his office. The vacancy lasts 6 years and 9 days.

GUERRERO, HERNANDO, O.S.A.—Native of Madrid or Alcaraz; professes in the Augustinian convent at Madrid; after going to the Philippines, holds many posts in the order, and is finally sent to Spain as procurator; on arrival at Mexico, finds decree appointing him bishop of Nueva Segovia; proceeds to Spain, where he obtains a mission, and his bulls confirming his appointment; returns to the Philippines in 1627; consecrated at Cebú, in 1628; governs his bishopric for 7 years; tries to obtain the government of the archbishopric of Manila in vacant see (see above); presented as archbishop, Jan. 16, 1632; takes possession of see, June 23, 1635; during his term quarrels with the governor, Hurtado de Corcuera, the Audiencia, and the Jesuits (see the numerous documents in our series concerning this); refuses to authorize or recognize the Collado faction among the Dominicans; exiled, in 1636, to Marivelez; returns from exile, June 6, 1636, his exile having lasted 26 days; visits diocese personally, and nearly captured by Camucones in consequence; dies July 1, 1641, at age of 75; buried in Augustinian church; zealous, but obstinate, hot-headed, and too unbending.

VACANT SEE.—Ecclesiastical cabildo governs because Arce renounces his right to do so.

MONTERO DE ESPINOSA, DR. FERNANDO.—Native of Búrgos; becomes secular priest; doctor of theology in Salamanca University, and holds other offices; first palace cura of Felipe IV, when royal chapel was erected into a parish church; a noted preacher; administrator of the hospital outside of Toledo; presented as bishop of Nueva Segovia in [304]1642; consecrated in Mexico in 1643; May 20, 1644, while on way to islands, receives presentation as archbishop; embarks at Acapulco, in March, 1645; arrives at the port of Lampon, at the end of July of that year; sets out for Manila, but dies at Pila, in Laguna de Bay, of fever; funeral celebrated on day he was to have made his public entrance into Manila; 45 years old; buried beside Benavides, but his remains afterward removed to the sagrario of the curas by Archbishop Poblete.

VACANT SEE.—Ecclesiastical cabildo governs; although it is agreed that the different members of the cabildo shall govern by months, the dean obtains the upper hand through connivance with the governor’s favorite Venegas, and a vicar general is elected. In this period occurs the Jesuit-Dominican contest as to priority of colleges; the Franciscans are disturbed by interior dissensions; while the cabildo itself is racked by internal dissensions; the royal decree ordering St. Michael the Archangel to be published as patron of the islands is put into force.

POBLETE, DR. MIGUEL DE.—Secular priest; born in Mexico, in 1603; a professor in the university; occupies some of the best ecclesiastical posts in Nueva España; resigns the bishopric of Nicaragua in 1644; the decree of his presentation as archbishop of Manila, dated May, 1648; keeps decree hid for more than a month before showing it; consecrated at the archiepiscopal palace at Mexico, Sept. 9, 1650; reaches Cavite, July. 22, 1653, with Governor Manrique de Lara; latter requests him to go ashore first and bless the country, on account of the troubles of the former archbishop; makes solemn entry, July 24; at Lent of 1654 the brief of Innocent X (Aug. 7, [305]1649), giving benediction and absolution to the land placed in force; tries to enforce episcopal visit of regulars, who oppose him strongly, and resign their curacies, compelling the archbishop to restore them for want of seculars to put in their place; quarrels with Governor Salcedo, who refuses to pay the ecclesiastical stipends, whereupon the cabildo is suspended for the time being, and Poblete tries to borrow 2,000 pesos with which to satisfy the most pressing needs of the cabildo; trouble over the appointment to the office of dean of the cabildo, which falls vacant; rebuilds cathedral, laying the first stone, April 20, 1654; begs alms for cathedral, and applies to it 22,000 pesos, which has been contributed to it by the inhabitants of Manila; dies on the day of the Conception, Dec. 8, 1667; orders body not embalmed, but his orders disregarded; buried (governor participating in obsequies), Dec. 11, in the sagrario of the curas in the cathedral; funeral services met by alms of private persons; memorial honors celebrated, Jan. 30, 1668; 64 years old at time of death; much regretted.

VACANT SEE.—The ecclesiastical cabildo governs the archbishopric.

LOPEZ, JUAN, O.P.—Born in Martin Muñoz in Castilla la Vieja; professes in Dominican convent of San Esteban of Salamanca; collegiate at college of San Gregorio at Valladolid; goes to Philippines in 1643 as missionary; lectures on theology in the college of Santo Tomás; in 1658, goes to Nueva España to recover health; following year sent title as definitor and procurator general; goes to Spain by way of France, in 1662, and thence to Rome; general of order gives him the degree of master of theology; at Rome receives decree of Felipe IV (Dec., 1662) presenting [306]him as bishop of Cebú; receives confirmation from pope, Apr. 23, 1663; gathers a band of 40 missionaries, and on reaching Nueva España is consecrated at Mechoacán, Jan. 4, 1665; takes possession of bishopric, Aug. 31, 1665; has troubles in bishopric, and proceeds to excommunications, unjustifiably, so that it becomes necessary for the royal Audiencia to intervene; during term as bishop, visits Manila twice, once when the commissary of the Holy Inquisition arrested Governor Salcedo, and the second time at Poblete’s death, under summons from the governor, who requested him to rule the archbishopric ad interim; presented for archbishopric in 1671; takes possession, Aug. 21, 1672; quarrels with ecclesiastical officials and with governor, the latter depriving him of the ecclesiastical stipends; obtains royal permission to have stipends sent from Mexico, in order that this might be avoided in the future (although the decree does not arrive until after his death); dies, Feb. 12, 1674, after a fever of 5 months, at age of 61; heart and entrails buried in sagrario of the curas, and body in the Dominican church; honors celebrated, Mar. 1, 1674; no bishop in islands at time of his death as all had died in 1671; harsh and impetuous by nature, and hence carried by his zeal into constant trouble.

VACANT SEE.—Dean and cabildo rule the archbishopric.

PARDO, FELIPE, O.P.—Born in Valladolid of noble parents; takes habit in convent of San Pablo at Valladolid; there becomes master of students; goes as missionary to Philippines in 1648; lector and rector in university of Santo Tomás in Manila; holds many posts in his order, his first term as provincial [307]ending in 1665; and his second in 1677; twice commissary of Inquisition; presented as archbishop, by royal decree of May 30, 1676; takes possession of archbishopric, at age of 68, Nov 11, 1677, without being consecrated, by special order of the king; requisite bulls reach him only in 1681; consecrated, Oct. 28, 1681, in Manila cathedral; makes public entry, Nov. 1; during his term, the first governor of the Marianas arrives; arrival of auxiliary bishop de partibus Gines de Barrientos, O.P., with title of bishop of Troya; takes missions in Luzón from Recollects, which he gives to the Dominicans, giving to the Recollects the missions of Mindoro in exchange (see the documents in our series referring to this); has conflicts with the governor, other orders, and ecclesiastical cabildo; orders all Spaniards to pay all fees to the parish priests of each district instead of to the parish priest of Bagumbayan, and since almost all the Spaniards lived in Binondo, this benefited his order especially; exiled to Lingayen, in Pangasinan, Mar. 31, 1683; secretly appoints Barrientos to govern the archbishopric; brought back from exile by Governor Curuzalaegui, and takes vengeance on the ex-governor, Vargas, and others; dies, Dec. 31, 1689, at age of 80, without the aids of religion; buried in church of the Dominicans; harsh, obstinate, revengeful, partial to the Dominicans; under the influence of the Dominican Verart, who was his counselor, and a man quarrelsome by nature. See the documents of the Pardo controversy in our series.

VACANT SEE.—The ecclesiastical cabildo yields the government of the archbishopric to the bishop of Troya, Gines de Barrientos, but the latter finally resigns the post, and the cabildo rules. Barrientos [308]makes so extreme use of his power while in command, that two members of the cabildo retire to the Augustinian convent in order to be immune from arrest, and ask aid of the governor ad interim.

CAMACHO Y AVILA, DR. DIEGO.—Secular priest; native of Badajoz; collegiate-mayor in the Insigne de Cuenca of Salamanca; canon of the church of Badajoz; presented as archbishop, Aug. 19, 1696; consecrated at La Puebla in Nueva España; takes possession of his see, Sept. 13, 1697; the papal legate Tournon comes to the islands during his term, and Camacho’s connection with him leads to complications with the Spanish government; a strong champion of the episcopal visit of the regular parish priests, and hence opposed by all the regulars; his attempts to place seculars in control of the parish churches end because there are not enough seculars to supply the places left vacant by the regulars; makes many improvements in the cathedral, and spends on it more than 40,000 pesos; founds seminary of San Clemente, which is thrown open to foreigners; because of this and his connection with Tournon, as well as indirectly because of his opposition to the regulars, transferred by royal order to the bishopric of Guadalajara, in Nueva España; takes possession of this, Mar. 25, 1706; visits bishopric several times; dies, in 1712; in will orders honors to be celebrated for him in Manila cathedral; these celebrated, Oct. 26, 1713, by Diego de Gorospe Yrala bishop of Nueva Segovia. See the various documents regarding the Camacho controversy in our series.

VACANT SEE—Cabildo governs until the arrival of the following.

CUESTA, FRANCISCO DE LA, Ordr of San Gerónimo.[309]—Native of Colmenar, near Madrid; master in theology; preacher to the king; presented as archbishop in 1706; consecrated in Mexico, Aug. 12, 1707; Clement XI decides in favor of episcopal visit of regular parish priests, and Cuesta attempts to carry the visits into effect, but regulars induce him to wait until representations can be made to the pope; imprisoned by Governor Bustamante; Governor Bustamante assassinated Oct. 11, 1719, and Cuesta freed and becomes governor ad interim, as all the auditors refuse the post; governs islands until July 24, 1721; all three bishoprics vacant during part of his term; transferred to the bishopric of Mechoacán, in Nueva España, because of the death of Bustamante; arrives at Acapulco, Jan. 11, 1724; takes charge of diocese, April 18; dies May 30 (Buzeta and Bravo say, May 31), 1724, at age of 63; buried in his church.

VACANT SEE.—Archbishopric governed by ecclesiastical cabildo; house for girls built.

BERMUDEZ GONZALEZ DE CASTRO, DR. CARLOS.—Secular; native of Puebla de los Angeles, Nueva España; licentiate and doctor of laws; professor in canons in the university of Mexico; holds office in Inquisition of Mexico, and other high offices in that archbishopric; presented as archbishop of Manila; in 1722; consecrated, June 17, 1725; compelled to remain in Nueva España three years longer for lack of a vessel sailing to the Philippines; leaves Mexico City, Mar. 5, 1728, and embarks at Acapulco, Mar. 27; goes ashore at Marianas, where he baptizes an infant; received privately in Manila, July 29, 1728; receives pallium, Aug. 22, from the bishop of Cagayan, at parish church of Quiapo; takes possession, Aug. 25; has trouble with the governor in regard to [310]the college of San Felipe; establishes formal rites; falls ill, Oct. 5, 1729, and dies, Nov. 13, at the age of almost 62; bequeaths heart to convent of San Lorenzo in Mexico; corpse buried, Nov. 18.

VACANT SEE.—Ecclesiastical cabildo governs the archbishopric.

ANGEL RODRIGUEZ, JUAN, Trinitarian.—Born in Medina del Campo; master in sacred theology; fills various posts in Spanish cathedrals; professor in Salamanca and Alcalá universities; appointed confessor of Diego Morcillo Rubio de Auñon, archbishop of Lima; arrives at Lima, April 17, 1731; presented as archbishop of Manila, May 18, 1731; obtains bulls, Dec. 17, and council decrees, dated Feb. 29, 1732, on May 25, 1732; compelled to remain in Lima until Jan. 2, 1736, as no ship is allowed to sail to Acapulco; embarks at Acapulco, Apr. 17, 1736; lands at Samar, Aug. 30; reaches Nueva Cáceres, Oct. 4; consecrated there by bishop Dr. Felipe de Molina, Nov. 23; receives pallium, Nov. 26; takes possession of see through Dean Luis Rico, Jan. 23, 1737, and makes public entry on the twenty-fourth; gives form to the cathedral choir, and introduces the Gregorian chant; prohibits night processions, and reforms several feasts; takes up the cause of the fiscal who has become embroiled with the governor and taken refuge in the Recollect convent, and persuades him to present himself in fuerza, hoping that the governor would treat him compassionately; matters turning out differently than he hopes, the archbishop, believing himself to be the cause of the evils that come upon the fiscal, is attacked by severe melancholy which causes immediate death; peaceful by disposition, lovable, and virtuous. [311]

VACANT SEE.—Ecclesiastical cabildo governs the archbishopric.

SANTISIMA TRINIDAD MARTINEZ DE ARRIZALA, PEDRO DE, O.S.F.—Native of Madrid; auditor of Quito; counselor of the Indies; becomes Franciscan; consecrated as archbishop of Manila in Spain; makes public entry into Manila, Aug. 27, 1747; in Spain obtains decree ordering the expulsion of the Chinese settled in the islands, but does not present it, because of the representations of the bishop of Nueva Segovia, Arrechedera, then governor ad interim, and whose order, the Dominican, has charge of the Chinese; on the arrival of the new governor, Obando, presents the decree, but it has no effect because of various disputes between the governor and archbishop; demands that Arrechedera hand over the government of the islands to him and even appeals to the court; quarrels with Obando’s successor, Governor Arandía, over questions of etiquette; dies, May 28, 1755 (Zúñiga says May 29).

VACANT SEE.—Dean and ecclesiastical cabildo in charge of the archbishopric.

ROJO DEL RIO Y VIEYRA, MANUEL ANTONIO.—Native of Tula, Nueva España; canon and provisor of Mexico; consecrated as archbishop of Manila in Nueva España, in 1758; takes possession of his see, July 22, 1759; demands charge of government of islands from Bishop Lino de Espeleta, governor ad interim, but latter holds command until arrival of decree from Spain transferring the command to Rojo; immediately settles Villacorta matter and quashes case against the Spanish mestizo Orendaín; British besiege and capture Manila, 1762; Rojo made virtually a prisoner; has disputes with Anda; [312]dies, Jan. 30, 1764, and given military burial by English; see VOL. XLIX.

VACANT SEE.—Ecclesiastical cabildo assumes control of the archbishopric.

SANTA JUSTA Y SANCHO DE RUFINA, BASILIO.—An Aragonese; a member of the Escuelas pias; preacher to the king; procurator for the province of Aragon; appointed archbishop, in 1767; consecrated in Spain, and arrives at Manila in 1767 via Cape of Good Hope; immediately establishes mission and preaches rigorously against all the vices for nine days; adorns cathedral; presides over council by which bishop of Nueva Cáceres exiled to his bishopric; makes most vigorous attempts to enforce episcopal visit of regular parish priests of any archbishop in history of the Philippines; bases his action on the bull Firmandis of Benedict XIV, dated Nov. 6, 1744, and the bull of Feb. 24, 1745, which were confirmed at the instance of the king by the bull Nunc nuper, of Nov. 8, 1751; in 1768, visits all the curacies held by the Dominicans; all the other orders resist; although the governor commands the orders to submit to the visit, and strives to uphold the royal patronage, the orders disregard him; many parishes provided with native secular priests by the archbishop in 1768, especially the parishes of the Parián, Binondo and the Province of Bataán, which had been administered by the Dominicans (which regulars claim was an irreparable injury); regulars complain to king, and archbishop directs energetic representation against them, May 10, 1768; Jesuit expulsion occurs during his term; Raón is finally gained by the orders and yields; when his successor Anda arrives, the archbishop appeals to him for aid, and although [313]the latter is unwilling to go as far as Santa Justa y Rufina, he aids him; provincial council called at Manila for May 19, 1771, to which the three suffragan bishops summoned; six meetings held but nothing lasting done; trouble over visit of the beaterio of Santa Catalina; Anda suspends cedula of Nov. 9, 1774, ordering the curacies secularized as they fall vacant; secularization ordered suspended by royal decree of Dec. 11, 1776; archbishop dies at Manila, Dec. 15, 1787; strong character, vigorous mind, impetuous; regular historians assert that he was influenced by the French encyclopedists and by the ministers of Cárlos III. See Pardo de Tavera’s Biblioteca filipina (Washington, 1903), for various writings of Santa Justa y Rufina; and our series for some account of his time.

VACANT SEE.—Ecclesiastical cabildo takes charge of the archbishopric.

ORBIGO Y GALLEGO, ANTONIO DE, O.S.F.—Born at Orbigo in León, in 1729; takes Franciscan habit at Priego; goes to Philippines as preacher and confessor, in 1759; elected bishop of Nueva Cáceres while procurator for his order in Spain, in 1779; takes possession of his see, in 1780; chosen archbishop of Manila, in 1789, and takes possession of his see Oct. 15 through the procurator, capitular vicar, and archdeacon, Francisco Durana, and makes public entry next day; visits his see, and once narrowly escapes capture by the Moros near Manila; dies May 15 (Buzeta and Bravo say May 16), 1790, at Santa Ana; buried in Franciscan church at Manila, on following day, as he had requested that his corpse be not embalmed; of pacific character, learned, simple in his tastes, and without enemies. [314]

VACANT SEE.—Ecclesiastical cabildo assumes control of the archbishopric.

SALAMANCA, IGNACIO.—Native of Manila; dean of Manila cathedral; becomes bishop of Cebú, Sept. 28, 1789; consecrated in Manila, and goes to bishopric in 1794; presented as archbishop of Manila, but dies at Cebú, Feb. 1802, before having received the despatches of his new dignity.

VACANT SEE.—The ecclesiastical cabildo rules the archbishopric continuously from the death of Orbigo y Gallego to the coming of Zulaibar, as Salamanca does not actually hold the office.

ZULAIBAR, JUAN ANTONIO, O.P.—Born in Vizcaya in 1753; takes habit at age of 16 in convent of San Pablo at Búrgos; receives degree of doctor at university of Ávila; professor of theology at university of Alcalá for 7 years; presented as archbishop of Manila, Aug. 1803; arrives at Manila, Sept. 2, 1804; consecrated at Manila, by Domingo Collantes, bishop of Nueva Cáceres, July 14, 1805 (Ferrando; Buzeta and Bravo say Sept. 8, 1804); voting member of vaccination board formed at Manila, Dec. 20, 1806, by royal order of Sept. 1, 1803; endows seminary of his diocese; dies Mar. 4, 1824.

VACANT SEE.—Ecclesiastical cabildo assumes control of the archbishopric.

DIEZ, HILARION, O.S.A.—Born at Valladolid, 1761; takes habit at an early age in the same city; in the Philippines serves as parish priest in several Tagálog villages, and becomes proficient in the Tagálog language; is twice prior of the Manila convent, and provincial of his order; his appointment as archbishop meets general approval; assumes charge of his see, Sept. 15, 1826; consecrated in the Augustinian church, Oct. 21, 1827; dies, May 7, 1829. [315]

VACANT SEE.—Ecclesiastical cabildo governs the archbishopric.

SEGUI, JOSE, O.S.A.—Born at Camprodon, in bishopric of Gerona, Oct. 3, 1773; takes habit at Seo de Urgel; goes to Philippines in 1795; missionary for 20 years in China; after his return to the Philippines, serves as definitor and procurator general for 12 years; auxiliary to his predecessor and made bishop in partibus of Hierocesaréa, July 27, 1829; elevated to the metropolitan see by Pius VIII, July 5, 1830; consecrated at the Manila Augustinian church, Oct. 28, 1830; receives pallium, Sept. 14, 1831, from the bishop of Ilocos whither he goes for that purpose; enters Manila publicly, Sept. 29, 1831; sends several circulars to his clergy, and invites them to spiritual exercises annually; receives the great cross of Isabel the Catholic; dies, July 4, 1845.

VACANT SEE.—Governed by ecclesiastical cabildo.

ARANGUREN, JOSE.—Recollect; born at Barasoain, diocese of Pamplona, Feb. 16, 1801; studies philosophy at Pamplona, and law at Zaragoza; takes habit at Alfaro, at the college of the Recollects (since removed to Monteagudo), in 1816; arrives at Manila, in 1830; serves in Pampanga; acts as provincial secretary; cura at Masinlos in Zambales; definitor in the chapter of 1840; elected provincial in 1843; appointed archbishop by king, Nov. 12, 1845; begins to govern, Mar. 19, 1846; consecrated, Jan. 31, 1847; receives pallium, Feb. 2, 1847, and makes public entrance into Manila, Feb. 7; receives great cross of Isabel the Catholic; dies, Apr. 18, 1862; laborious, prudent, and economical.

VACANT SEE.—The archbishopric is governed by Dr. Pedro Peláez, a Filipino secular priest, who is elected by the ecclesiastical cabildo as capitular vicar. [316]

MELITON MARTINEZ DE SANTA CRUZ, DR. GREGORIO.—Secular; born in 1815, in Prado-Luengo, in the diocese of Búrgos; studies theology in seminary of San Jerónimo in Búrgos, and afterwards occupies a chair in the same seminary; receives degree of bachelor at the university of Valladolid, and studies in the university of Madrid, where he also receives degrees; acts as provisor in Palencia, for 12 years, where he receives the doctorate by competition; holds various posts in the Pamplona ecclesiastical cabildo; appointed archbishop of Manila by the sovereign, July 31, 1861; consecrated in Madrid, Mar. 23, 1862; takes possession of see, May 27, 1862; receives degree of doctor in jurisprudence from the University of the Philippines, Aug. 24, 1862; a member of the Vatican Council until its suspension in 1871; has dissensions with the Recollects over vacancies occurring in the Manila diocese; together with the secular bishops of Cebú and Nueva Cáceres, sends exposition to queen, Feb. 15, 1863, urging the right of episcopal visitation of the regular parish priests; asks that briefs and laws declaring removable ad nutum the regular curas, be left in force; with provincials of orders protests to governor against the Moret decrees, May 16, 1869; Feb. 19, 1872, publishes long pastoral letter in Spanish and Tagálog lamenting and condemning Cavite insurrection, and especially the part taken in it by the Filipino clergy; resigns, 1875.

VACANT SEE.—1875–1876.

PAYO, PEDRO, O.P.—Takes charge of see, 1876; adorns and improves cathedral; dies, 1889.

VACANT SEE.—1889–1890.

NOZALEDA, BERNARDINO, O.P.—Native of Asturías, [317]of rustic parentage; originally a professor in Manila; takes possession of his diocese, Oct. 29, 1890; Apr. 28, and May 8, 1898, issues circulars to the Filipinos urging them to repel the American invaders; resides about 26 years in Philippines; relinquishes archbishopric, June, 1903; returns to Spain after the transfer of the Philippines to the United States; there nominated archbishop of Valencia,2 but the citizens refuse to receive him, because of evil reports about him.3

1 The host was stolen at least three other times in the history of the Philippines: once in Camarines; once in Malate; and in 1730 from the Franciscan convent and church at Maycavayan. See San Antonio, Chronicas, i, p. 181. 

2 In 1808, the Manila diocese comprehended the provinces and districts of Manila, Bulacan, Batangas, Cavite, La Infanta, Laguna, Mindoro, Morong, Nueva Ecija, Pampanga, Principe, Tarlac and Zambales. It had 219 parishes, 24 parish missions, 16 active missions, 259 parish priests, or missionaries, and 198 native secular priests who acted as assistants to the parish priests (who were mainly regulars). See the Rept. of the Phil. Com., for 1900, i, p. 132, and iv, p. 107. 

3 Foreman, Philippine Islands (N. Y., 1906 ed.), p. 597, note 2. 

Table of Contents

DOCUMENTS OF 1801–1840 21
Of the present composition of the divisions of the army 183
Of the enlargement of the army of the islands 187
Of the artillery and its dependent branches 190
Of the forts of Manila and Cavite 195
Of the piracies of the Moros 196
Of the large Indian villages 198
Of the titles to landed property belonging to the Indians and the villages 201
Of the ecclesiastical orders which are conferred on Indians and mestizos 203
Of the European religious in Filipinas 205
On the settlement of banished and vagabond foreigners in the islands 207
Of the residence of European Spaniards in Filipinas 209
Of the residencias 212
Of the selection of all classes of employees for the Filipinas Islands 213
Of the use of weapons in Filipinas 214
Of the despatch of assistance to the Filipinas Islands 215
[Of the failure of governors and intendants to make reports] 216
Of the royal court 218
Of the administration of justice in general 220
Of the alcaldes-mayor and military governors of the provinces 222
Of the taxes 224
Of the revenue from tobacco 225
Of the revenue from wine 227
Of the head-money, or personal tax, from the Chinese 228
Of the custom-house duties 232
Of the inter-island trade 234
Of money 235
Of the charitable funds established in Filipinas 240
Of the arsenal of Cavite 242
Of the agriculture of the Filipinas Islands, in general, and of their principal productions 243
Of the anfion, or opium 251
Of the cotton manufactures 253
Of the means for establishing regular communication and frequent and permanent mercantile relations between España and the Filipinas Islands. 256
Of the necessity of forming a special code of laws for the Filipinas Islands; and of ordaining that a periodical visitation of that colony be made by officials from the Peninsula. 259
The Cortes of 1810–1813 279
The Cortes of 1820–1823 286
The Cortes of 1834–1837 293



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The following corrections have been applied to the text:

Page Source Correction Edit distance
40, 41 [Not in source] . 1
41 , [Deleted] 1
42 two too 1
91 be he 1
95 Senora Señora 1 / 0
95, N.A. Nino Niño 1 / 0
N.A. Senor Señor 1 / 0
127 devasted devastated 2
141 [Not in source] , 1
160 [Not in source] 1
N.A., N.A. 1
188 Batan Bataan 1
210 slothfulnes slothfulness 1
212 inpunity impunity 1
299 Natives Native 1
301 O.S.E. O.S.A. 1


Overview of abbreviations used.

Abbreviation Expansion
O.P. Ordo Praedicatorum
O.S.A. Ordo Sancti Augustini
O.S.F. Order of Saint Francis