History of the Philippines (1521–1898)

History of the Philippines (1521–1898)

:"Spanish East Indies"

The story of the Philippines from 1521 to 1898 is an exciting epic of how a handful of Christian missionaries, Spanish conquistadores, indigenous nobles, early European settlers and Malay population built a nation that became the Philippines of today. The road to nationhood was difficult with continuous threats of disintegration brought about by invasions from the Dutch, British, Chinese, Japanese and Malay rebellions. Amidst the crises, the Philippine people stood together to keep the colony intact. The 1800s, however, was a period of global change under the banner of liberty, equality and brotherhood brought about by the patriotisms of the French and American Revolutions. In 1898, Filipino patriots seceded from the declining Spanish Empire and formally declared independence under the First Philippine Republic.

This article covers the history of the Philippines from the arrival of European explorer Ferdinand Magellan in 1521 up to the end of Spanish rule in 1898.

European Exploration

Europeans first arrived in the archipelago in 1521, when Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan first sighted the mountains of Samar on March 17, 1521, claiming the lands for Spain, and naming them "Islas de San Lazaro". [Citation
title=Philippine History - Spanish Colonization
] Failed verification|date=June 2008 The first Holy Mass was celebrated on March 31, 1521 in the island of Mazaua which was located by eyewitnesses at three different latitudes, Antonio Pigafetta said it was at 9° 40' North, Francisco Albo at 9° 20' North, and The Genoese Pilot at 9° North. Another eyewitness, Ginés de Mafra located the isle at 15 leguas (45 nautical miles using the Spanish scale of 1:3) south of or below Butuan of 1521. The reference point of de Mafra was the tip of today's Surigao del Norte, at either Bilaa Pt. or Madilao Pt. There are no islands the naked eye can see at the latitudes given by Pigafetta, Albo and the Genoese Pilot, whose latitude is where de Mafra locates Mazaua. But in 2001 a group of earth scientists, composed of a geomorphologist, geologists and archaeologists discovered an isle at 9° N exactly where de Mafra suggested. The isle has yet to be proven to be Mazaua through concrete, material objects that can be directly linked to Magellan and other Europeans who visited Mazaua. This can only be done through comprehensive archaeological excavations in the isle.

Magellan sought friendship among the natives beginning with Humabon, the chieftain of Sugbu (now Cebu), and took special pride in converting them to Catholicism. Magellan got involved with political rivalries among the native tribes and took part in a battle against Lapu-Lapu, Chieftain of Mactan Island and a mortal enemy of Humabon. Magellan invaded Mactan Island with only 48 armored men (less than half his crew) against Lapu-Lapu's army of some 1,500 warriors. Several hours later, Magellan lie dead without having reached the shores of Mactan. See Battle of Mactan

After the battle, the Spanish were to few to man three ships so they abandoned the "Concepcion". The remaining ships - "Trinidad" and "Victoria" - sailed to the Spice Islands in present-day Indonesia. From there, the expedition split into two groups. The "Trinidad", commanded by Gonzalo Gómez de Espinoza tried to sail eastward across the Pacific Ocean to the Isthmus of Panama. Diseases and a shipwreck disrupted Espinoza's voyage and most of its crew members died. Survivors of the "Trinidad" returned to the Spice Islands, where the Portuguese imprisoned them. The "Victoria" continued sailing westward, commanded by Juan Sebastián Elcano, and managed to return to Sanlúcar de Barrameda, Spain in 1522. In 1529, in the treaty of Zaragoza, Spain relinquished all claims to the Spice Islands (and westward) to Portugal. However, the treaty did not stop the colonization of the archipelago from New Spain. [harvnb|Agoncillo|1990|p=73]

After Magellan's voyage, subsequent expeditions were dispatched to the islands. Four expeditions were authorized: that of Loaisa (1525), Cabot (1526), Saavedra (1527), Villalobos (1542), and Legazpi (1564). [Harvnb|Zaide|1939|p=113] In 1543, Ruy López de Villalobos named the territory "Las Islas Felipinas" after Philip II of Spain. [Citation
title=Ruy López de Villalobos
] (Some scholars give the name as "Las Felipinas", attributing the naming to Bernardo de la Torre, also known as "Capitan Calabaza", who was commander of the ship "San Juan de Letran" In Villalobos' fleet [Harvnb|Agoncillo|1995|p=74] [Citation
title= In Search of Excellence: Historical Roots of Greek Culture
author=Alexander Makedon
publisher=Chicago State University
chapter=On the etymology of the term "Philippines"
(monograph based on a lecture presented at the All Nations Women's Group of YWCA of Manila, Inc. The lecture was given on Nov. 15, 1995, at the Greek Consular Residence of The Hon. Milton Adamson, Consul of Greece, Makati City, Philippines.)
] [Harvnb|Spate|2004|p=98] ). The most successful expedition was that of Miguel Lopez de Legaspi who founded the first Spanish settlement of San Miguel in Sugbu (now Cebu).fact|date=September 2008


On April 27, 1565, Spanish conquistadores numbering a mere 500 attacked the defiant Tupas, son of Humabon, and was made to sign an agreement. On that same day, the first permanent Spanish settlement of San Miguel was founded in Cebu. In 1570, Juan de Salcedo, in the service of Legaspi, conquered the city of Maynilad (now Manila). Legaspi then made Maynilad the capital of the Philippines and renamed it Nueva Castilla. The name didn't stick and the hispanized name of Manila (from Maynilad) survived to this day. This action pleased the King of Spain and pointed Legaspi as the colony's first governor-general. Cebu then receded into the background as power shifted north to Luzon with the fertile lands of its central plains. The archipelago was made Spain's outpost in the orient as the Spanish East Indies. The colony was administered through the Viceroyalty of New Spain (now Mexico) until 1821 when Mexican patriots seceded from the Spanish Empire. After 1821, the colony was governed directly from Spain.

Spanish colonial rule brought Catholicism to the islands. One friar, Fr. Juan de Placencia wrote a Spanish-to-Tagalog "Christian Doctrine" in 1593 which was a transliteration from Roman letters to Baybayin characters, the alphabet of the natives around Manila. This effort probably sped the Christianization of the islands 3. In 1590, missionaries from the Society of Jesus, led by Fr. Antonio Sedeño, S.J., established the Colegio de Manila, which in 1623 became the Universidad de San Ignacio, the first pontifical and royal university in the Philippines and in Asia. In 1595, the Jesuits established the Colegio de San Idelfonso (since 1948 the University of San Carlos). In 1611 the Dominican friars founded the University of Santo Tomas in Manila, which currently has the oldest extant university charter among Philippine schools (after the San Ignacio closed in the 1770s following the Suppression of the Jesuits, who only returned in 1859). Christianization did not reach the remote areas of the mountain provinces and inland communities of Mindanao, which remains largely Muslim to this day.

Early colonial economy depended on the "Galleon Trade" between Manila and Acapulco, Mexico. To avoid hostile powers, most trade between Spain and the Philippines was via the Pacific Ocean to Mexico (Manila to Acapulco), and then across the Caribbean Sea and Atlantic Ocean to Spain (Veracruz to Cádiz). The European population steadily grew although natives remained the majority. They depended on the Galleon Trade for a living. In the later years of the 18th century, Governor-General Basco introduced economic reforms that gave the colony its first real income from the production of tobacco and other agricultural exports. In this later period, agriculture was finally opened to the European population, which before was reserved only for the natives.

During Spain’s 333 year rule in the Philippines, the colonists had to fight off the Chinese pirates (who lay siege to Manila, the most famous of which was Limahong in 1574), Dutch forces, Portuguese forces, and indigenous attacks with limited resources. Moros from western Mindanao and the Sulu Archipelago constantly raided the coastal Christian areas of Luzon and the Visayas and occasionally brought home loot and fair women. They often sold their captives as slaves.

In the late 16th century, the Japanese, under Hideyoshi, claimed control of the Philippines and for a time the Spanish paid tribute to secure their trading routes and protect Jesuit missionaries in Japan.

Serious challenges to Spanish rule began in 1761, during Spain's involvement in the Seven Years' War. In 1762, colonial forces of the British East India Company captured Manila with a force of 13 ships and 6830 men, easily taking the Spanish garrison of 600, but made little effort to extend their control beyond the city. In accordance with the 1763 Treaty of Paris, the Philippines was returned to Spain. British victory inspired the rebellion of Diego Silang, who in 1762 expelled colonial authorities from the coastal city of Vigan.

Political System

The Spanish quickly organized their new colony according to their model. The first task was the reducion, or relocation of native inhabitants into settlements. The earliest political system used during the conquista period was the encomienda system, which resembled the political system known as Feudalism in Medieval Europe. The conquistadores, friars and native nobles were granted estates, in exchange for their services to the King, and was given the privilege to collect tribute from its inhabitants. In return, the person granted the encomienda, known as encomendero, was tasked to provide military protection to the inhabitants, justice and governance. In times of war, the encomendero was duty bound to provide soldiers for the King, in particular, for the defense of the colony from invaders such as the Dutch, British and Chinese. The encomienda was entrusted to the encomendero by the King for only two generations. The encomienda system was abused by encomenderos and was replaced by a more advanced system of governance of the times.

The most prominent feature of Spanish cities were the plaza, a central area for town activities such as the fiesta, and where government buildings, the church, a market area and other infrastructures were located. Residential areas lay around the plaza. During the conquista, the first task of colonization was the reducion, or relocation of the indigenous population into settlements surrounding the plaza.

Like most of Europe, the church always had control over the state affairs of the colony. The friars controlled the sentiments of the native population and was more powerful than the governor-general himself. Among the issues that resulted to the Philippine revolution of 1898 that ended Spanish rule was the abuse of power by the religious orders.

National Government

On the national level, the King of Spain, through his Council of the Indies (Consejo de las Indias), governed through his sole representative in the Philippines: the Governor-General (gobernador y Capitan-heneral).With the seat of power in Intramuros, Manila, the Governor-General is given several duties: he heads the Supreme Court (Real Audiencia), is Commander-in-chief of the army and navy, and is the economic planner of the country. All known executive power of the local government stems from him and as vice-real patron, he has the right to supervise mission work and oversee ecclesiastical appointments. His yearly salary is P40,000. For obvious reasons, the governor-general was usually a Peninsulares (Spaniard born in Spain) to ensure loyalty of the colony to the crown.

Provincial Government

On the provincial level, heading the pacified provinces (alcaldia), is the provincial governor (alcalde mayor). The unpacified military zones (corregidor), such as Mariveles and Mindoro, were headed by the corregidores. City governments (ayuntamientos), are also headed by the alcalde mayor.Alcalde mayors and corregidores exercised multiple prerogatives as judge, inspector of encomiendas, chief of police, tribute collector, capitan-general of the province and even vice-regal patron. His annual salary ranges from P300 to P2000 before 1847 and P1500 to P1600 after it. But this can be augmented through the special privilege of "indulto de commercio" where all people were forced to do business with him. The alcalde mayor had usually been an Insulares (Spaniard born in the Philippines). In the 1800s, the Peninsulares began to displace the Insulares which resulted to the political unrests of 1872, notably the execution of GOMBURZA, Novales Revolt and mutiny of the Cavite fort under La Madrid.

Municipal Government

The pueblo or town is headed by the gobernadorcillo or little governor. Among his administrative duties was the preparation of the tribute list (padron), recruitment and distribution of men for draft labor, communal public work and military conscription (quinto), postal clerk and judge in minor civil suits. He intervened in all administrative cases pertaining to his town: lands, justice, finance and the municipal police. His annual salary, however, was only P24 but he was exempted from taxation. Any native or Chinese mestizo, 25 years old, literate in oral or written Spanish and has been a cabeza de barangay or 4 years can be a gobernadorcillo. Among those prominent is Emilio Aguinaldo, a Chinese Mestizo and who was the gobernadorcillo of Cavite El Viejo (now Kawit). Early officials of the pueblo were taken from the Maharlika class or nobles of pre-Hispanic society. Their names are survived by prominent families in contemporary Philippine society such as Tupas, Gatmaitan, Liwanag, Pangilinan, Panganiban and Agbayani to name a few.

"Barrio" Government

Barrio government (village or district) rested on the barrio administrator (cabeza de barangay). He was responsible for peace and order and recruited men for communal public works. Cabezas should be literate in Spanish and have good moral character and property. Cabezas who served for 25 years are exempted from forced labor.In addition, this is where the sentiment heard as, "Mi Barrio", first came from.

The Residencia and The Visita

To check the abuse of power of royal officials, two ancient castilian institutions where brought to the Philippines. The Residencia, dating back to the fifth century and the Visita differed from the residencia in that it was conducted clandestinely by visitador-heneral sent from Spain and might occur anytime within the official’s term, without any previous notice.
Visitas maybe specific or general


Manila-Acapulco Galleon Trade

The Manila-Acapulco Galleon Trade was the main source of income for the colony during its early years. The Galleon trade brought silver from New Spain and silk from China by way of Manila. This way, the Philippines earned its income through buy and sell - that is, they bought silk from China for resale to New Spain and then bought American silver for resale to China. The trade was very prosporous but neglected the development of the colony's local industries which affected the Indios since agriculture was their main source of income. In addition, the building and operation of galleons put too much burden on the colonists' annual "polo y servicio". However, it resulted to cultural exchanges between Asia and the Americas that led to the introduction of new crops and animals to the Philippines notably tobacco that gave the colony its first real income which benefit extended to the common Indio. The trade ceased in 1821 with the secession of American colonies from Spain.

Royal Society of Friends of the Country

Jose de Basco y Vargas, following a royal order to form a society of intellectuals who can produce new, useful ideas, formally established the Real Sociedad Economica de Amigos del Pais. Composed of leading men in business, industry and profession, the society was tasked to explore and exploit the island's natural bounties. The society led to the creation of Plan General Economico of Basco which implemented the monopolies on the areca nut, tobacco, spirited liquors and explosives. It offered local ad foreign scholarships and training grants in agriculture and established an academy of design. It was also credited to the carabao ban of 1782, the formation of the silversmiths and gold beaters guild and the construction of the first papermill in the Philippines in 1825. It was introduced on 1780, vanished temporarily on 1787-1819, 1820-1822 and 1875-1822 and ceased to exist in the middle of the 1890s.

Royal Company of the Philippines

On March 10, 1875, Charles III created the Royal Philippine Company with a 25 year charter. It was granted exclusive monopoly of bringing to Manila, Philippines; Chinese and Indian goods and shipping them directly to Spain via the Cape of Good Hope. It was stiffly objected by the Dutch and English who saw it as a direct attack on their trade of Asian goods. It was also vehemently opposed by the traders of the Galleon trade who saw it as competition. This gradually resulted into the death of both institutions: The Royal Philippine Company in 1814 and the Galleon trade in 1815.


To support the colony, several forms of taxes and monopolies were imposed. The "buwis" (tribute), which could be paid in cash or kind (tobacco, chickens, produce, gold, blankets, cotton, rice, etc., depending on the region of the country), was initially was fixed at 8 reales (one real being 12.5 centavos) and later increased to 15 reales, apportioned as follows: ten reales "buwis", one real "diezmos prediales" (tithes), one real to the town community chest, one real "sanctorum" tax, and three reales for church support. [Harvnb|Agoncillo|1990|pp=81-82]

Also collected was the "bandalâ" (from the Tagalog word "mandalâ", a round stack of rice stalks to be threshed), an annual enforced sale and requisitioning of goods such as rice. Custom duties and income tax were also collected. By 1884, the tribute was replaced by the "Cedula personal", wherein colonists were required to pay for personal identification. Everyone over the age of 18 was obliged to pay. [Harvnb|Agoncillo|1990|pp=82-83]

Forced Labor (Polo y Servicio)

The system of forced labor otherwise known as "polo y servicio" evolved within the framework of the encomienda system, introduced into the South American colonies by the Conquistadores and Catholic priests who accompanied them. "Polo y servicio" is the forced labor for 40 days of men ranging from 16 to 60 years of age who were obligated to give personal services to community projects. One could be exempted from "polo" by paying the "falla" (corruption of the Spanish "Falta", meaning "absence"), a daily fine of one and a half real. In 1884, labor was reduced to 15 days. The "polo" system was patterned after the Mexican "repartimento", selection for forced labor. [Harvnb|Agoncillo|1990|p=83]

ocio-Cultural Transformations

By the 1800s, the Philippines had become one of Spain's most affluent and important possessions. The early European settlers, soldiers and missionaries brought with them the European way of life and was adapted by the indigenous population such as the Spanish menu, religious festivals, stone houses, manner of clothing and fashion. The colonists used the Gregorian calendar, the Latin script and used Theocentric art, music, literature. While the native Malays adapted into European ways, the European settlers also adapted to oriental culture learning to eat rice as their staple and use soy sauce, coconut vinegar, coconut oil and ginger. Today, Philippine culture is a blend of both worlds having retained both European and Malayan characteristics. Perhaps the most obvious social transformation in the Philippines is the growth of a Creole population. Like the Americas, the Creoles in the Philippines would become restless in the advent of the French and American Revolutions and organize their own revolts eventually leading to the first independent republic in Asia.

Early Resistance

Native Revolts

Resistance against Hispanization did not immediately seize upon the conquest of the Malay cities. After Tupas of Sugbu, random native nobles resisted Spanish rule. The longest recorded native rebellion was that of Francisco Dagohoy which lasted a century (Teodoro Agoncillo, History of the Filipino People). During the British invasion in the 1700s, Diego Silang and later Gabriela Silang, plotted with the invaders to set up an independent Ilocano government. However, all these revolts were not national in character and mostly rooted from personal grudges (Teodoro Agoncillo, History of the Filipino People. In addition, Hispanization failed to reach the remote areas of the mountain provinces of Luzon.

Moro Resistance

Hispanization failed to reach the inland communities of Mindanao. The Moros had a more advanced political system than their Malay counterparts in the Visayas and Luzon most notably the Sultanate. Spanish cities were limited to the coastal areas of Zamboanga and Cagayan de Oro.

The Opening of the Philippines to World Trade

The 1800s was a period of global change. The world had entered its first phase of globalization under the British Empire. In Europe, the Industrial Revolution had spread from Great Britain which had entered its Pax Britannica known as the Victorian Age. The rapid industrialization of Europe were seeking new markets and found them in the colonies. The colonies prospered with the production of raw materials for the mother countries. It was during this period that Governal-General Basco opened the Philippines to World Trade. The economy of the Philippines rose rapidly and its local industries developed to satisfy the rising industrialization of Europe. European immigration increased with the opening of the Suez Canal which cut the travel time between Europe and the Philippines by half. New ideas, which the friars and colonial authorities found dangerous, found their way into the Philippines notably Freemasonry and ideals of the French and American Revolutions.

Rise of Filipino Nationalism

The opening of the Philippines to world trade rapidly developed the Philippine economy. Many Filipinos prospered overnight. Even Indios benefited from the new economy with the rapid incease in demand for labor and availability of business opportunities. Many Europeans immigrated to the Philippines to join the wealth wagon, among them Jacobo Zobel, patriarch of today's Zobel de Ayala family and prominent figure in the rise of Filipino nationalism. Their scions studied in the best universities of Europe where they learned the ideals of liberty from the French and American Revolutions. The new economy gave rise to a new Middle Class in the Philippines.

In the early 1800s, the Suez Canal was opened which made the Philippines much nearer to Spain. The rapid increase of Peninsulares from the Iberian peninsula threatened the secularization of the Philippine churches. In state affairs, the Creoles were displaced from government positions by the Peninsulares, whom the Creoles regarded as foreigners. The Creoles had become increasingly Filipino and called themselves "Los Hijos del Pais" (sons of the country). Among the early proponents of Filipino nationalism were the Creoles Padre Pedro Pelaez, archbishop of Manila, who fought for the secularization of Philippine churches and expulsion of the friars; Padre Jose Burgos whose execution influenced the national hero Jose Rizal; and Joaquin Pardo de Tavera who fought for retention of government positions by Filipinos. In retaliation to the rise of Filipino nationalism, the friars called the Indios (possibly referring to Creoles and Mestizos as well) indolent and unfit for government and church positions. In response, the Creoles came out with the Indios Agraviados, a manifesto defending the Filipino against discriminatory remarks. The tension between the Creoles and Peninsulares erupted into the failed revolts of Novales and Cavite Mutiny of 1872 which resulted to the deportation of prominent Filipino nationalists to the Marianas and Europe who would continue the fight for liberty through the Propaganda Movement. The Cavite Mutiny implicated the Creoles Fathers Gomez, Burgos and Zamora (see GOMBURZA) whose executions would influence the subversive activities of the next generation of Filipino nationalists, in particular Paciano Rizal, elder brother of the Philippine national hero. In turn, José Rizal dedicated his novel, "El Filibusterismo" to the three martyred Filipino priests.

Rise of Liberalism and Carlos Maria de la Torre

The Liberals won the Spanish Revolution of 1869. Carlos María de la Torre y Nava Cerrada was sent to the Philippines to serve as governor-general (1869-1871). He is one of the most loved governors-general in the Philippines having implemented reforms in the colony. At one time, his supporters serenaded him in front of the Malacañang Palace. Among those who serenaded were Padre Burgos and Joaquin Pardo de Tavera. When the Reactionaries regained power in Spain, De La Torre was recalled and replaced by Governor-General Izquierdo who vowed to rule with an iron fist.

The Reform Movement and Revolution


Freemasonry had gained a generous following in Europe and the Americas during the 1800s and found its way to the Philippines. The Western World was quickly changing and sought less political control from the Roman Catholic Church. The Philippine Reform Movements of La Solidaridad, La Liga Filipina and Katipunan were mason-inspired and applied the rituals of Freemasonry in their induction of members. Key figures of the Reform Movement and Revolution were members of Freemasonry such as Jose Rizal, Andres Bonifacio and Emilio Aguinaldo.

The mass deportation of nationalists to the Marianas and Europe in 1872 led to a Filipino expatriate community of reformers in Europe. The community grew with the next generation of Ilustrados taking graduate studies in European universities. They allied themselves with Spanish liberals, notably a certain Spanish senator named Morayta and formed the La Solidaridad. Among the reformers was Jose Rizal, who wrote his two famous novels while in Europe. Among the manuscripts of the reformers, his novels were considered the most influential causing further unrest in the islands particularly the founding of the Katipunan. A rivalry developed between himself and Marcelo Del Pilar for the leadership of La Solidaridad and the reform movement in Europe. Majority of the expatriates supported the leadership of Marcelo Del Pilar. Jose Rizal then returned to the Philippines to organize La Liga Filipina and bring the reform movement to Philippine soil. He was arrested just a few days after founding the league. In 1892, Radical members of the La Liga Filipina, which included Andres Bonifacio and Deodato Arellano, founded the Kataastaasang Kagalanggalangan Katipunan ng mga Anak ng Bayan (Katipunan or KKK), which had the bold objective of seceding the Philippines from the Spanish Empire. From the Creole uprisings of the early 1800s of Fathers Pelaez and Burgos, the Filipino discontent had escalated to a full blown armed revolution.

The Philippine Revolution

Ironically, the Creoles and Mestizos did not favor the armed revolution. Prominent Creoles like Antonio Luna didn't join the revolution until the Americans threatened the Philippine Republic. Even Jose Rizal himself disapproved despite his novels inspiring the hostilities. A number of Indios refused to take part in the revolution as well. Apolinario Mabini, whose surname profess that he is of native Malay roots, refused to fight the Spanish but gladly gave his services when America became the enemy. Nevertheless, by 1896 the Katipunan had a membership by the thousands and included prominent figures such as Cavite El Viejo Gobernadorcillo Don Emilio Aguinaldo, Emilio Jacinto and Gregorio Del Pilar - a nephew of Marcelo Del Pilar. That same year, the existence of Katipunan was discovered by colonial authorities. On the Eve of St. Bartolomew, Katipuneros of Manila gathered in Pugad Lawin to declare the start of the revolution now known as the Cry of Pugad Lawin. The Katipuneros of Manila were crushed in less than a week. They fled to Cavite where they took refuge in the more successful campaigns there. The Katipuneros of Cavite were more fortunate having planned their actions before the outbreak of hostilities with their war strategy designed by the engineer Edilberto Evangelista based on Spanish military science. As early as its first stages, Emilio Aguinaldo, using access as Gobernadorcillo of Cavite El Viejo, seized the arsenal of the Cavite fort securing arms and ammunition for the revolution. At the height of their success, Filipino patriots convened the Tejeros Convention and to form a revolutionary government. The delegates elected Emilio Aguinaldo as president. The revolution was ridden with disunity from the start. Andres Bonifacio attempted to set up a separate revolutionary government and was executed for treason. Much of the Creoles and Mestizos refused to join the revolution. By 1897, the revolution had resulted to a stalemate between the colonial government and rebels. Pedro Paterno mediated between the two sides for the signing of the Pact of Biak-Na-Bato. The conditions of the armistice included the self-exile of Aguinaldo and his officers in exchange for $800,000 to be paid by the colonial government. Aguinaldo then sailed to Hong Kong, then a possession of the British Empire.

In 1898, the Spanish-American War broke off. Emilio Aguinaldo returned to the Philippines with American aid, that is the blockading of Manila Bay from Spanish reinforcements. However, this aid was unnecessary as the Spanish reinforcements wouldn't have made it anyway as their Cazadores were tied down in Cuba both quelling a similar revolt and fighting the Spanish-American War there, and later the Americans turning against the Filipino patriots in the end after all. By 1898, the patriots have liberated much of the country from colonial rule. They declared independence in 1898 and established the First Philippine Republic. They laid siege to Manila and prepared to invade the city.

Emilio Aquinaldo failed to conclude the revolution by invading the capital city of Manila. The United States had promised to recognize Philippine Independence and the Americans requested Aguinaldo to wait for American reinforcements so that they could enter the city together. The Americans had asked Aguinaldo to turn over vital entries to the capital city over to the Americans, which he did so in good faith to their alliance. In a sudden twist of fate, the Americans secretly entered into a pact with the Spanish governor-general in which the latter agreed to fight a mock battle before surrendering Manila to the Americans. In Paris, the Spanish agreed to sell the Philippines to the United States for $20Million and turn over Guam and Puerto Rico. With this action, Spanish rule in the Philippines formally ended. With Manila taken, the Americans waited for reinforcements and prepared to attack the Philippine Republic.

Philippine-American War

In 1899, the Philippine-American War erupted resulting to the American colonization of the Philippines. Historians disagree on the actual end of hostilities as resistance against American rule occurred up to the 1940s during the arrival of the Japanese. In 1942, Artemio Ricarte returned to the Philippines with the Japanese on the pretext that he is continuing the war against the Americans. In February of 1899, hostilities broke out when an American sentry fired and killed a Filipino soldier on patrol. Accounts suggest that it was a result of misunderstanding when the American shouted "halt" which the Filipinos took as "Halto" which in Spanish meant "welcome". Nevertheless, the American Military Governor Otis used the incident to escalate hostilities "to the grim end". By December of this same year, the Philippine Army under the command of General Gregorio Del Pilar had been annihilated in Pangasinan and Aguinaldo fleeing to the mountain province with less than a hundred troops. In the Battle of Tirad Pass, the Republic could only spare 60 soldiers for the defense. From December 1899 to March 1901, the revolution was nothing more than a hide and seek masquerade between the pursuing American Army and Emilio Aguinaldo. At the same time though, the Tinio Brigade, which survived the annihilation of the main Philippine Republican Army in Pangasinan carried on guerilla warfare, which the Americans branded as nothing more than bandit "disorders". However, evidence is clear that those "disorders" were national in level and revolutionary in character. In March 1901, Emilio Aguinaldo was captured and swore allegiance to the United States. Some history books mark this event as the end of the war but the Battle of Balangiga under General Vicente Lukban which led to the massacre of an entire American regiment happened in 1902. Americans renamed it the Massacre of Balangiga and falsely called Samar an Islamic province to justify the "disorder". Americans then turned Samar into a "howling wilderness". After the capture of Aguinaldo, Miguel Malvar succeeded him as president of the Philippine Republic. Some books call him the last general to surrender to the Americans but in 1904, Artemio Ricarte returned from exile to continue the war against the Americans. "Disorder" disrupted American rule all throughout its duration. It was only in 1914 that resistance to American rule declined. A new generation of Filipinos educated in American public schools have replaced the patriots. The revolution had ran out of Filipinos to fight its wars.

For details of the events, see Philippine-American War

See also



first=Teodoro A.
title=History of the Filipino People
publisher=University of the Philippines

title=The Spanish Lake
first=Oskar Hermann Khristian
publisher=Australian National University

first=Gregorio F.
title=Philippine History and Civilization
publisher=Philippine Education Co.

External links

* [http://filipiniana.net/readbook_content.jsp?filename=SE0000000018 De las islas filipinas] A historical account written by a Spanish lawyer who lived in the Philippines during the 19th century
* [http://www.philippines-timeline.com/spanish.htm Timeline of Philippine History: Spanish colonization]

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