The Philippine Islands, 1493-1898 (Vol 28 of 55)
Author: Various
1  2  3  4  5  6  7     Next Part
Home - Random Browse

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 XXVII, 1637-38

Edited and annotated by Emma Helen Blair and James Alexander Robertson with historical introduction and additional notes by Edward Gaylord Bourne.


Preface. 9

Documents of 1637-38

Remonstrance of Augustinians against the alternativa. Juan Ramirez, O.S.A., and others; Manila, September 9, 10, 1637. 21 Corcuera's campaign in Jolo. Juan de Barrios, S.J.; Jolo, March-April, 1638. 41

Appendix: Religious conditions in the Philippines during the Spanish regime

Laws regarding religious in the Philippines. Felipe II, Felipe III, Felipe IV; 1585-1640. [From Recopilacion de las leyes de Indias.] 67 Jesuit missions in 1656. Francisco Colin; Madrid, 1663. [From his Labor evangelica.] 78 The religious estate in the Philippines. Juan Francisco de San Antonio, O.S.F.; Manila, 1738. [From his Chronicas.] 104 Religious condition of the islands. Juan J. Delgado, S.J.; 1751-54. [From his Historia general.] 163 Ecclesiastical survey of the Philippines. Guillaume le Gentil; Paris, 1781. [From his Voyages dans les mers de l'Inde.] 192 Character and influence of the friars. Sinibaldo de Mas; Madrid, 1843. [From his Informe.] 226 The ecclesiastical system in the Philippines. Manuel Buzeta, O.S.A., and Felipe Bravo, O.S.A.; Madrid, 1850. [From their Diccionario de las Islas Filipinas.] 266 Character and influence of the friars. Feodor Jagor; Berlin, 1873. [From his Reisen in den Philippinen.] 290 The Augustinian Recollects in the Philippines. [From Provincia de San Nicolas de Tolentino de Agustinos descalzos (Manila, 1879).] 300 Present condition of the Catholic religion in Filipinas. Jose Algue, S.J., and others; Washington, 1900. [From Archipielago filipino.] 349

Bibliographical Data 369


Title-page of Labor evangelica, by Francisco Colin (Madrid, 1663); photographic facsimile from copy in library of Edward E. Ayer, Chicago 79 Title-page of vol. i of San. Antonio's Chronicas de la apostolica provincia de S. Gregorio (Manila, 1738); photographic facsimile from copy in Harvard University Library 105 View at Naga, Cebu; from photograph procured in Madrid 155 Title-page of Le Gentil's Voyages dans les mers de l'Inde (Paris, 1781); photographic facsimile of copy in library of Wisconsin Historical Society 193


The present volume is, with the exception of one document, devoted to the religious and ecclesiastical affairs of the Philippines—mainly in extracts from standard authorities on the religious history of the islands, combined in an appendix. Beginning with the laws which concern missionaries to the Philippines (1585-1640), we present accounts of the ecclesiastical machinery of that colony, the status of the various religious orders, the missions conducted by them, and other valuable information—showing the religious condition of the islands at various times, from 1656 to 1899. These are obtained from Jesuit, Augustinian, Franciscan, and Recollect chronicles, and from secular sources—the French scientist Le Gentil, the Spanish official Mas, and the German traveler Jagor—thus enabling the student to consider the subject impartially as well as intelligently.

Only two documents appear here in the usual chronological sequence; they belong to the years 1637-38. The officials of the Augustinian order in the islands inform the king (September 9, 10, 1637) that the archbishop is making trouble for them over the question of the "alternativa" in appointments to offices within the order; and ask the king not to believe all the reports that may reach him about this matter. They add a memorial on the difficulties which Gregory XV's decree establishing that alternativa have caused in the Philippines; and relate their action in regard to the faction in their order who insist that an insignificant minority shall have equal rights to offices with the better-qualified majority.

The Jesuit Juan de Barrios, who accompanied Corcuera in his expedition against Jolo, relates (March-April, 1638) the events of that campaign in letters to Manila. The Spaniards are repulsed several times in attacking the Moro stronghold, and one of their divisions is surprised by the enemy with considerable loss to the Spaniards. Corcuera then surrounds the hill with troops and fortifications, and begins a regular siege of the Moro fort; various incidents of this siege are narrated. On the day after Easter the Moros, starved and sick, send Corcuera proposals for surrender; and finally they abandon their stronghold, and take flight, leaving the Spaniards in possession of all their property as well as the fort. A letter from Zamboanga (perhaps by Barrios) adds further particulars of the surrender and flight of the Joloans, the mortality among the Spaniards, the garrison left there by Corcuera, etc.

Taking up the general religious status of the islands, we select from the Recopilacion de las leyes de Indias, lib. i, tit. xiv, the laws that especially concern the religious in the Philippines, dated from 1585 to 1640. These persons may not go to China or other countries, or return to Spain or Mexico, without special permission from the civil and ecclesiastical authorities. Carmelites may go to the islands from Mexico. The missions must be so assigned that each order has its own territory, separate from the others. The usual supplies shall be given to such religious as obtain permission to enter China and Japan; and all royal officials are directed to aid the fathers in their journeys, and not to hinder them. Religious who lead scandalous lives, or have been expelled from their orders, may not remain in Filipinas. The papal decrees de alternativa are to be enforced in the Indias. The restrictions imposed on religious going to the Japan missions are removed; all orders may go, but are charged to set an example of harmony and fraternal behavior. The missionaries are forbidden to engage in commerce or other business; the field shall be suitably divided among the various orders; and any bishops who may be appointed in Japan shall be suffragan to the see of Manila. Clerics from Eastern India are not to be allowed to perform priestly functions in Filipinas, or even to enter the islands. The proceeds resulting from the sale of the bulls of the Crusade must be placed in the royal treasury, and not used in trade by the treasurers of the Crusade.

The Jesuit Colin places at the end of his Labor evangelica (Madrid, 1663) a statement—prepared, he says, in accordance with a command from the king—of the number of missions, houses, and laborers supported by that order in the Philippines, a survey of its field and labors in the year 1656. He describes the scope, functions, and resources of the colleges in Manila; the missions near that city; and, in their order, the residences and missions maintained by the Society in the respective islands.

An interesting account of the religious estate in the islands about 1735 is furnished by the Franciscan writer Juan Francisco de San Antonio. Beginning with the cathedral of Manila, he sketches its history from its earliest foundation, and describes its building and service, with the salaries of its ecclesiastics; and adds biographical sketches (here omitted) of the archbishops down to his time, and the extent of their jurisdiction. Then follow accounts, both historical and descriptive, of the ecclesiastical tribunals, churches, colleges, and charitable institutions—especially of San Phelipe college and La Misericordia. San Antonio enumerates the curacies in the archbishopric, and the convents and missions of the calced Augustinians. He then describes the educational work of the Jesuits, giving a history of their colleges of San Ignacio and San Jose, and enumerates their houses and missions; another sketch furnishes similar information regarding the Dominicans, who have especial charge of the Chinese residing in Luzon. Like accounts are given of the Recollects, of the hospital brethren of St. John of God, and of the author's own order, the discalced Franciscans. On the same plan, he surveys the religious estate in all the bishoprics suffragan to Manila; and, finally, computes the numbers of the Christian native population in the islands.

Another survey of religious matters in the islands is furnished (about 1751) by the Jesuit Juan J. Delgado. He enumerates the ministries of souls in methodical order, beginning with those held by the secular clergy in each diocese—in all, fifty-three. Those of the calced Augustinians are noted in the same manner; then those of the Franciscans, Jesuits, Dominicans, and Augustinian Recollects; and the convents and hospitals of the hospital order of St. John of God. Among these are also mentioned the schools and colleges, and the hospitals, conducted by the orders. Delgado states that the Christian population of the islands actually numbers over 900,000 persons; adding to this the children under seven years of age, who are not enumerated by the missionaries, he estimates that it must exceed a million of souls. He enumerates the numbers of villages and of their inhabitants who are in charge of each of the respective orders. He estimates the number of tributes paid annually by the natives at a quarter of a million, and describes the requirements and mode of payment, and the allotments made from the tributes for the support of religious instruction. He then relates in detail the number and remuneration of all ecclesiastical offices, from bishop to cura. Delgado then describes the ecclesiastical tribunals of the islands, the organization and good work of La Misericordia, and other charitable institutions in Manila, with the royal chapel, hospital, and college.

The French scientist Le Gentil describes (from observations made during 1766-68) the religious conditions in the islands. He enumerates the benefices connected with Manila cathedral, and the salaries and duties of their incumbents; and the ecclesiastical tribunals in that city—those of the archbishop, the Inquisition, and the Crusade. Then he relates interesting details about the churches, convents, schools, and other institutions. Among these are the royal chapel, the seminary of San Felipe, the seminary of Santa Isabela, the confraternity of La Misericordia, the universities, and the hospitals. Le Gentil describes the ecclesiastical machinery of the suffragan dioceses, and the convents therein—all more extensive and costly than the population and wealth of the country justify. The rest of his account is devoted to "the power and influence enjoyed by the religious in the Philippines." He says: "Masters of the provinces, they govern there, as one might say, as sovereigns; they are so absolute that no Spaniard dares go to establish himself there.... They are more absolute in the Philippines than is the king himself." They ignore the royal decrees that the Indian children must be taught the Castilian language; thus the friars keep the Indians in bondage, and prevent the Spaniards from knowing the real state of affairs in the provinces. They have refused to allow the visitations of the archbishops—a matter explained at considerable length by the writer. The natives sometimes revolt, and then the friars cannot influence them, but troops must be sent to punish the rebels. Le Gentil also relates the manner in which the friars punish the natives for not attending mass, by flogging them—not only men, but women, and that in public.

Sinibaldo de Mas, a Spanish official who spent some time at Manila, gives in his Informe (Madrid, 1843) a chapter regarding the character and influence of the friars—partly from his own observations, partly cited from Comyn's Estado de las Islas Filipinas en 1810, a valuable work, published at Madrid in 1820. He relates the difficulties encountered in the attempts so often made to subject the friars to the diocesan visit. This has been at last accomplished, but, according to Mas, with resulting lower standards of morality among the curas. He cites various decrees and instances connected with the controversies between the friars and the authorities, civil and religious; and then long extracts from Comyn, which show the great extent of the priestly influence, and the causes therefor. Comyn regards the priests as the real conquerors of the islands, and as the most potent factor in their present government—at least, outside of Manila. He shows how inadequate is the power of the civil government, apart from priestly influence; recounts the beneficial achievements of the missionaries among the Indians; and deprecates the recent attempts to restrict their authority. Mas approves Comyn's views, and proceeds to defend the friars against the various charges which have been brought against them. In support of his own opinions, he also cites Fray Manuel del Rio; and he himself praises the public spirit, disinterestedness, and devotion to the interests of the Indians, displayed by the curas, many of whom are friars. He argues that they even show too much patience and lenity toward the natives, who are lazy and indolent in the extreme; and it has been a great mistake to forbid the priests to administer corporal punishment to delinquent natives. Mas is surprised at the lack of religious in the islands, while in Spain there is an oversupply and the livings are much poorer than in the Philippines. He enumerates the various dioceses, and the number of curacies in each, whether filled by regulars or seculars; and concludes with an extract from the Jesuit writer Murillo Velarde, on the duties of the parish priest who ministers to the Indians.

A survey of the ecclesiastical system is presented (1850) in the Diccionario de las Islas Filipinas of the Augustinians Manuel Buzeta and Felipe Bravo. As in preceding writings of this sort, the different sees are separately described—in each being enumerated the territories of its jurisdiction, and its mode of government and ecclesiastical courts; the number of curacies in it, and how served; and the number of other ecclesiastical officials, with professors, seminarists, etc. In the account of Cebu is inserted a letter (1831) from the bishop of that diocese, appealing for its division into two.

The German traveler Feodor Jagor presents (1873) an interesting view of the character and influence of the friars. He praises their kindly and hospitable treatment of strangers, and the ability and knowledge that they often display; and defends those whom he has known (mainly the Spaniards) from the charge of licentiousness. He discusses the relations between the curas and civil alcaldes—the former being often the protectors of the Indians against the latter.

A survey of the field and labors of the Augustinian Recollects is obtained from Provincia de San Nicolas de Tolentino de Agustinos descalzos (Manila, 1879)—presented partly in translation, partly in synopsis. In it are enumerated the missions in charge of that order, with the number of souls in each; frequently occurs an historical account of a mission's foundation and growth, and biographical mention of especially notable missionaries—including those who in early days were martyrs in Calamianes and Mindanao. It ends with tables showing the numbers of tributes, souls, and ministers in the Recollect provinces, at various times.

A sketch of the religious condition in the islands in 1896-98 is furnished by Jose Algue and other Jesuit fathers of Manila in their compendious work, Archipielago filipino (Washington, 1900). Statistics showing the growth of the Christianized native population from 1735 to 1898 are compiled from various sources—a remarkable increase, which the editors ascribe mainly to missionary labors. Then the various sees are enumerated, with their bishops, cathedrals, courts, seminaries, and priests; and the various houses, colleges, and other institutions possessed by the respective religious orders in the islands, besides the colleges of each in Spain. Considerable space is devoted to a characterization of the religious spirit that prevails among the Filipinos; and to the conclusion that general freedom of worship in that archipelago "would be a fatal measure to any government that rules the destinies of Filipinas," and might result in a politico-religious war. The American government is therefore warned not to allow such freedom in the islands.

The Editors

July, 1905.

DOCUMENTS OF 1637-1638

Remonstrance of Augustinians against the alternativa. Juan Ramirez, O.S.A., and others; September 9, 10, 1637. Corcuera's campaign in Jolo. Juan de Barrios, S.J.; March-April, 1638.

Sources: The first of these documents is obtained from a MS. in the Archivo general de Indias, Sevilla; the second, from one in the Academia Real de la Historia, Madrid.

Translations: The first document is translated by Emma Helen Blair (except the Latin part, by Rev. T. C. Middleton, O.S.A.); the second, by James A. Robertson.



In fulfilment of your Majesty's commands and of the obligation that rests upon us as your Majesty's loyal vassals and humble chaplains, we have every year rendered account to your Majesty of the progress made by this province of Philipinas of our father St. Augustine; and [have told you] how the religious of the province—whom your Majesty has sent to these regions, at the cost of his royal estate, for the conversion of these peoples and the direction of those who are converted—are and have been occupied, with the utmost solicitude, in fulfilling their obligations and your Majesty's command by gathering rich fruits, both spiritual and temporal.

It is now eight years, [1] Sire, since this province received a brief from his Holiness Gregory Fifteenth of blessed memory, that was obtained improperly, through the efforts of the religious who are in this province who are born in these regions. In it his Holiness ordained that all the elections among the said religious, from that of provincial to that of the most petty official, should be shared between the religious of these regions and those who have come from Espana at your Majesty's cost. The execution of this decree was impossible, because the number of the said religious who were born in these regions was much less than that of the offices which, it was ordained, must be conferred upon them. On this account, appeal was made to his Holiness, who was more clearly informed [about the matter]. Nevertheless, these letters have caused great commotions in the order itself and in the community; for many persons in the colony, on account of being kindred of the religious of this country, and many others who, like those religious, were born here, have taken up the cause as their own—thinking that they are thus defending their native land. This is a difficulty that may give rise to many others; and these provinces have during all this time suffered many anxieties and losses, as will appear from the reports which we are sending to your Majesty with this letter. This year it pleased our Lord that another brief should come, from his Holiness Urban Eighth, which revoked the former brief of Gregory Fifteenth. It was sent to the archbishop of this city of Manila, so that he might—as the truth of the allegations made in Rome by the father-general of our holy order was evident—annul the former brief, and leave the elections of this province in the liberty which our constitutions provide, without any discrimination between nationalities. We gave many thanks to our Lord for the favor that He had granted us; for, with this second brief, we promised ourselves the peace and quiet that are necessary in order that we all may more freely occupy ourselves in our Lord's service, and in fulfilling the purpose for which your Majesty was pleased to send us to these lands. But such was not the case; for the archbishop was angry (according to what we can understand of the matter) because in the former year of 35 we followed the cathedral church, during his absence, in the observance of an interdict which he had laid on this city—a proceeding which he greatly resented because, he said when he returned to this city, the interdict had not been raised by his order or with his consent. Now, as this business has come into his hands, he is giving us many opportunities for gaining merits; and although the narration made in the brief is so accurate and truthful that there is nothing more evident, he has displayed his cognizance of it by reducing it to the terms of an ordinary litigation, and has made plain his intention, which is to exceed the commission that his Holiness gives him in the brief—to the very considerate prejudice and injury of this province and of the observance of our holy constitutions. By his conduct the opposition that we have thus far suffered from lay persons born in these regions has been continually stimulated—to such an extent that Don Sebastian Hurtado de Corcuera, the governor of these islands, saw that he had reason to fear some bad ending to such beginnings; and therefore, with the prudence and carefulness which he displays in all matters concerning his government, he suppressed the disturbances which were being stirred up.

We do not know, Sire, how this will result, although we strive in all things to possess our souls in patience; and we trust to the justice of the governor of these islands, that he will protect us in all that our just claims and rights shall permit. For we can have only this consolation in the present emergency, that violence is threatened against us; and that the protection which the governor of these islands has extended to your Majesty's vassals in such cases, and his defense of the royal patronage, have been the occasion of the commotions and troubles which have occurred in this city during these last two years. For if the archbishop had chosen to avert them he could have done so, without losing anything of his jurisdiction, or failing to meet the obligations of a vigilant prelate.

Accordingly, we entreat your Majesty not to give entire credit to all the reports about this matter that are written to your Majesty from this country; for we know how persons regard our affairs at present, and that many are ruled by prejudice, and not by the facts in the case. The same risk is run in other matters, for there never was a judge who could please all persons. What we can assert and certify to your Majesty is the great zeal which Don Sebastian Hurtado de Corcuera has always displayed in the service of God and your Majesty, and in the increase of the royal estate. For in his own life he sets an example to the most devout religious; and in his personal attention to the duties of his offices he continues without being turned aside to anything else. His actions are guided by the law of God and the service of your Majesty. He is vigilant in preventing all offenses against God, and in military discipline. It seems as if our Lord has aided him, in consequence of this; for it is in his time that these islands of your Majesty, and your vassals, find themselves in a condition of peace, without being harassed by so many enemies as neighboring nations have—who have inflicted on them so much damage through many previous years, with pillage, fire, murder, and captivity. And as the most powerful enemy was the king of Mindanao, last year the governor went in person to punish him in his own kingdom; and he conquered that king and gained possession of two fortresses, the most important that he had, with many cannons, muskets, and other fire-arms. From this campaign the arms of your Majesty have gained much reputation, and all the enemies of these islands are intimidated; while the vassals whom your Majesty has in them are more established in their obedience. If that fortunate victory had not occurred as it did, there might have been much reason to fear for the allegiance that the peoples of these islands owe to your Majesty. And Don Sebastian deserves that your Majesty bestow upon him greater rewards, since in more important posts the services which he can render to your royal crown will be greater. May our Lord guard your royal person, granting you the prosperity which your Majesty's many realms ask from God, and of which they have need. Manila, September 9, 1637. Your Majesty's chaplains, who kiss your royal feet,

Fray Juan Ramirez, provincial. Fray Cristobal de Miranda, definitor. Fray Geronimo de Medrano Fray Alonso de Caravajal Fray Juan de Montemayor Fray Manuel de Errasti

Relation of events in the Philipinas province of the Order of St. Augustine, and of the effects caused therein by the letters of his Holiness Gregory XV in which he commanded that the elections for offices, from the provincial to the most petty official, should be made alternately between the two parties—one, the religious who took the habit in Espana and came to these islands for the conversion of the infidels and the direction of those who are converted; the other, the religious who have entered the order in the Indias.

This province of Philipinas of the order of our father St. Augustine has enjoyed, from the time of its foundation at the conquest of these islands, the utmost peace in its ordinary government; and it is by virtue of this that it has accomplished so great results in the service of the two majesties [i.e., God and the king of Spain]—being always occupied in the conversion of these peoples, and in the direction of those who are converted; and devoting so much care to the fulfilment of its obligations, even when the results of their labors made their devotion so manifest. In this state the order was maintained, making great progress in the gain of souls, until the year 29, in which this said province received a brief from his Holiness Gregory XV, in which he commanded that the elections in the province, from that of provincial to that of the most petty official, should be made alternately between the religious who had come from Espana at the cost of his Majesty, and those who had entered the order in these regions. The brief was laid before the province; [2] but it had been obtained by misrepresentations, and its execution was impossible because the religious who had taken the habit in the Indias were very few, numbering less than one-third as many men as were the offices which the said brief commanded to be given to them. For these reasons, the province appealed from the execution of the decree; but, although this appeal was so just and so conformable to law, the judge whom they had appointed to execute the decree [3] refused to allow it, declaring that we were publicly excommunicated. Afterward, the royal Audiencia here, to whom we had recourse with a plea of fuerza, declared that the judge had committed it against us in not allowing the said petition and appeal, that it might go before his Holiness. Then the judge, compelled by the royal Audiencia, admitted the said appeal, and set a time when it should be brought before the authorities at Roma. In order to serve better the interests of this province, we appeared, through our procurators, within the allotted time at Roma, and furnished official statements presented by us, with all due solemnity.

But this was not sufficient to make the religious who took the habit in the Indias cease from disturbing the peace of the province; for they appointed, in the year 35, another judge to execute the said brief. He undertook to establish his judicature by proceeding against us with harsh and violent acts, and caused us much anxiety; for he was aided by nearly all the lay persons of this colony who were born in these islands, who took up this cause as their own. They caused many disturbances, and used language so offensive that they obliged the honorable and well-intentioned people of this city to come to our defense. This was done by the bishop of the city of Santisimo Nombre de Jesus in Cubu, who was then governing this archbishopric; for as judge of the ordinary he demanded from the said judge-executor the documents by virtue of which the latter had erected a tribunal within his territory. [4] Under the compulsion of censures and pecuniary fines, the said judge-executor gave up the documents; and his Lordship, having examined them, declared that they were not sufficient. [5] This declaration was supported and favored by Don Juan Cereco de Salamanca, who was at that time governor of these islands; and he also interposed the superior authority of the office which he filled, to calm and quiet in their beginnings these commotions—which threatened, if they should increase, much greater troubles. They were quieted for the time; but in the following year, 36, those religious again nominated another judge [6] to execute the said brief, who began to carry out this commission with even greater violence than the two former judges displayed. His conduct was such that we could not protect ourselves, although we protested that this cause devolved upon his Holiness; and we offer here the authentic testimony of our statement presented in course of appeal, the tenor of which is as follows:

"By this present public instrument be it known to all that in the year of the birth of our same Lord Jesus Christ, 1631, the fourteenth indiction, the twenty-ninth day of March, and the eighth year of the pontificate of our most holy father in Christ and our lord Urban VIII, by divine Providence pope, the reverend brethren of the Order of Saint Augustine resident in the province of the Philippines, who made their profession in Spain, have proceeded against the brethren similarly resident in the same province, who were received into the order in the Indias. As filed in my office, etc.

"To the petition in the memorial and brief as presented, the reverend father Master Peter Ribadeneira, [7] assistant [general] for the Spains and procurator for the Indias [or Philippines], made answer as follows: That his clients were not bound thereto, inasmuch as the said ordinances could not be carried into effect by reason of impossibility, since the brethren who were given the habit [of the order] in the Indias are fewer in number than the offices [or positions] to be filled [by the same]; wherefore the decree de alternativa [8] cannot be complied with in the conferral of the said offices. Moreover, that the said brief was obtained without a hearing of his clients, and therefore is surreptitious, besides being contrary to truth in that the charge was made therein that a sedition had taken place among the [brethren]. Wherefore protest has been entered that no further steps be taken unless by [due process of law], etc.

"Whereupon I the undersigned, a notary-public, have been requested to have made and drawn up one or more public instruments in reference to all and singular the above, according as may be needed or demanded.

"Done at Rome in my office, etc., of the Rione del Ponte, [9] in the presence and hearing and cognizance of Don Bernardino Pacheto [10] and Don Jacobo Francisco Belgio, fellow-notaries and witnesses, especially called, requested, and summoned to all and singular the above."

We also present an original letter from the general of our order, and another from the father assistant of the province of Espana, in which they tell us how his Holiness had already revoked the said brief; also another letter, from the procurator of this province at that court [i.e., Madrid], in which he notified us that he had presented the brief of revocation in the royal Council of the Indias. But, notwithstanding these letters, the religious who had taken the habit in the Indias persisted all the more in persuading their judge to hurry forward the legal proceedings and to urge on the acts of violence which he was executing against us; and in this importunity, and in the opposition which the said religious made to the letters and advices of the general and of the assistant in the Spanish provinces, was admirably displayed the obedience and respect that they have for their superior. At this juncture also arose disturbances made by the relatives of the said religious, occasioning many scandals; and the friars, encouraged by the support which these people gave them, could not be corrected within the convent, and disturbed it to the utmost. They made promises to the lay brethren to ordain them as priests in order to draw these into their following; and so far did they go that all of them together sallied out from the convent one morning—the second day of August in last year—more than two hours before daylight, and carried with them the doorkeeper and three lay brethren, leaving the gates of the convent open. Roaming through the streets at those hours, with very great scandal, they went where they chose until daylight; and then they went to the palace, where they presented themselves before the governor of these islands, Don Sebastian Hurtado de Corcuera—demanding, under pretext of desiring freedom to prosecute their just claims, that he shelter them under the royal patronage, take them out of the [Augustinian] convent, and assign them another where they could reside. The governor, with the prudence and great zeal which he displays in all the affairs of his government, rebuked them for this proceeding, ordered that the provincial be summoned, and charged him to take the religious back to the convent, but to treat them kindly; and, although recognizing the serious nature of their act, he requested the provincial not to punish them for it, and the latter acted in accordance with the governor's wishes.

But those religious continued to cause much mischief and trouble, and there was reason to fear other and greater difficulties. The procedure of the judge was so violent that he went so far as to issue an act in which he represented the preceding [session of the] chapter as nugatory, and commanded the provincial, with penalties and censures, to surrender within two hours the seal of the province, so that it might be given to the person on whom the said judge should see fit to bestow it. They delayed notification of this act to the provincial until sunset, so that he could not reply within the time set; and as soon as morning came, they declared that he had incurred censures. The governor of these islands, as your Majesty's lieutenant, interposed the authority of his office; and thus were prevented the great injuries that were beginning outside the order—and, within it, the disturbance and schism which had begun. This was done by means of an act issued by the judge, in which he suspended the former act, and decided that the trial of this cause should be deferred for forty days before the [next] chapter-meeting. Therewith this province remained in peace and quiet, [11] and all the religious attended to their obligations—until the arrival, in this year of thirty-seven, of the bull for this province, passed by the royal Council of the Indias, in which our most holy father Urban Eighth revoked the brief for the alternativa; its tenor is as follows:

"Since, however, it has lately been reported to us by our beloved son, the prior-general of the order [12] of the brothers hermits of Saint Augustine, that in the aforesaid province nearly all the brethren of Spanish blood of the said order resident therein were sent to those countries at the expense of our very dear son in Christ, Philip, the Catholic king of the Indias, in order that they might labor for the conversion of heathens and the instruction of converts; that moreover in the province and order of the aforesaid brethren in those countries there are very few [brethren] known as creoles [criolli], who are fit for the charge of those peoples: Therefore in the letters presented as inserted ahead, in view moreover of the fact that it is impossible to have the law carried out since the creole brethren are not numerous enough to fill the aforesaid offices with the care of souls attached thereto, an appeal has been taken to us and to the apostolic see to have the said decrees set aside. Hence the said prior-general has humbly petitioned us of our apostolic kindness to make due provision in the premises.

"Therefore hearkening to the petition of the said prior-general, desirous moreover of rewarding him with especial favors and graces [we hereby,] in order that these presents alone be carried into effect, do absolve him and declare him thus absolved from whatsoever excommunication, suspension, interdict, and other ecclesiastical sentences, censures, and penalties incurred by law or individual court, should he in any manner have been entangled thereby; moreover through these presents we charge and order your fraternity that, should the petition be grounded on truth, you interpret benignly and recall the letters inserted ahead, to the end that by our apostolic authority the elections for the future be free, in accordance with the constitutions of the said order, the same as if the letters inserted ahead had not been issued. The same letters inserted ahead and all other things to the contrary notwithstanding.

"Given in Castel Gandolfo [13] of the diocese of Albano, under the seal of the Fisherman, the eighteenth day of May, the year one thousand six hundred and thirty-four, and the eleventh year of our pontificate."

This entire clause appears inserted in the brief, after the relation which is made therein of the brief which his Holiness Gregory XV issued in favor of the alternate elections—which is the one which his Holiness [Urban VIII] revoked by the said letters, as appears by them. We presented this brief to the archbishop of Manila, to whom its execution came committed, with the cognizance of the clause si preces veritate nitantur; [14] and with the said brief the attorneys for our cause presented three certified statements by the provincial and definitory of this province, drawn from its books, and sworn to and signed by all. In one of these statements is contained the number of the religious in this province who took the habit and made profession in the kingdoms of Espana. Of these there are ninety-three, among whom are two youths graduated in theology; ten lecturers in arts and theology; thirty preachers who completed their studies in the realms and universities of Espana, and in that country received their diplomas as preachers; and twenty-four preachers who came to these islands before they completed their studies, and received that title in these provinces. In another statement is contained the number of the religious in this province who have taken the habit in the Indias; these are thirty-three. Six of them should be excluded: two of these are of Portuguese nationality, sons of the Congregation of Yndia—who, by a decree of his Majesty, and the decision of a full definitory of this province, are commanded to return to their own congregation. Two others are prevented from saying mass—one by old age, and the other by having been insane more than fifteen years. Another is of Japanese nationality; and the sixth is a mestizo, son of a Portuguese father and a Japanese mother. At the foot of this memorandum is a declaration by the definitory that there are other persons on the list therein who are disqualified, legally and by our constitutions, from holding offices in our holy order—whom, if it should be necessary, they will make known. In the third certificate is contained the number of offices that this province furnishes; there are eighty-four of these, in which must be counted the sixty-six convents of the order which are residences of ministers, and three others which are communities. The archbishop accepted these certified statements, and commanded, by an act which he issued officially, that the two religious who acted as attorneys for the religious who had taken the habit in the Indias should be notified of these statements; and that when they had examined and understood the papers, they must declare under oath whether these were authentic and legal, and if they had anything to add to them. After the said attorneys had examined and understood them, they declared that the statements were accurate and truthful; and likewise, by a juridical act of his Lordship, the same notification was made to seven or eight other religious of the same faction of the Yndias, who also under oath declared that the statements were accurate and truthful. Notwithstanding this evidence, the archbishop began to allow petitions from the said attorneys for the party of the Yndias, in which they promised to furnish evidence that the narration made in the said brief was false—saying that the word paucisimi [i.e., "very few"], which is in the said brief, signified no more than two or three; and that the words inepti ad administrationem populorum [i.e., "not fit for the charge of those peoples"] meant unfitness of the intellect; and they endeavored to prove that they were competent and capable for the offices that the province had. The religious of Espana opposed this, evidence, saying that such was not the signification of those words; for paucisimi was understood with respect to the offices, and inepti ad administrationem populorum meant lack of strength in their numbers—as farther down the same brief explained it in the words: Quod dicti patres in numero suficiente apti non sint, and oficiorum prefatorum distributione. [15] And as for the arguments adduced at Roma when this matter was presented in course of appeal—which were stated in the testimony, as is most clearly evident—those religious did not oppose these allegations, or many others which were made to his Lordship. To him were also presented several protests against the injuries which this province, in their general opinion and belief, had to suffer, and, as many individuals of their number thought, difficulties which might arise from furnishing the said information, as a reason why his Lordship might fail to accept this statement of the case. These difficulties appear, and in fact have begun to make trouble with persons outside of the order. The religious of Espana saw this; and they knew that the witnesses who gave their testimony in the case could not have knowledge of all the religious in this province who have taken the habit in the Yndias, nor of their qualifications, nor for what offices they were suitable according to our constitutions; moreover, they heard that it was certain that the said fathers of the Yndias faction were representing and alleging their own suitability [for those offices]—the purpose of these efforts being to establish by them new pretensions in the two courts [of Madrid and Roma], and with those representations to cause fresh disturbances and uneasiness in this province. To obviate this mischief, and to make clear and evident the justice in the claims of both sides, and to prevent gossip by persons outside of the order regarding the qualifications of the religious, the fathers of Castilla presented a petition in which was inserted a memorandum of the religious in this province who belonged to the Yndias faction; these are thirty-three, the same as those mentioned in the certified statement of the definitory that was presented earlier. Constrained by necessity and the strait in which they found themselves, the fathers of Espana testified, under oath and in legal form, in what manner fifteen of the religious mentioned in the said petition were disqualified or disabled, by law and the constitutions of our order, for holding official positions in the order. They also demanded that, of the eighteen who remained, the attorneys of the Yndias faction should declare, for each separately and in detail, what learning and competency he possessed; whether he had been a student in any course of science or arts, and where and at what time; for what offices in the order he was competent, according to our constitutions; and in which of the four provinces which this province [of St. Augustine] administers—in which it is necessary to know the Tagal, Pampanga, Ylocan, and Bisayan tongues, which are all different languages—each of those religious was a minister. [They were also asked to name] those who had sufficient fluency in the language to preach the gospel and declare the mysteries of the faith to the Indians; and whether there were any religious of their faction who were qualified to be preachers in this convent of Manila and in other Spanish towns and convents; whether there were any such religious capable of teaching arts and theology (both moral and scholastic), or of deciding the difficult questions that are wont to arise regarding the administration of the sacraments in the provinces. The fathers of Castilla stated that, when the truth of these matters should be ascertained, they were ready to make concessions, without the necessity of a formal investigation; and that in matters where there was any doubt, they would have the religious appear before his Lordship [the archbishop], so that before him and the professors of the two universities of this city, or before the superiors of the religious orders, they might be examined by the official examiners of this province, and their qualifications be made evident. They have made no reply to this request, and we fear that the archbishop will not oblige them to answer it—inasmuch as in the number of the said eighteen religious not eight will be found who can in strictness be considered qualified to hold an office cum cura animorum [i.e., "with the care of souls"], and not one for positions as professors or preachers in this city of Manila, while only two are well versed in cases of conscience.

The affair remains in this condition, and we do not know how it will end; for in this country justice and law do not secure, to one who seeks justice, the attainment of his object. Done at this convent of St. Augustine in Manila, on the tenth of September, in the year one thousand six hundred and thirty-seven.

Fray Juan Ramirez, provincial. Fray Cristobal de Miranda, definitor. Fray Geronimo de Medrano Fray Alonso de Carabajal Fray Juan de Montemayor Fray Manuel de Errasti


In my last letter I wrote to your Reverence of the result of the first attack—which was unfortunate, because the Moros repulsed us, as I told your Reverence. Not less unfortunate will be the news that I shall now relate, [16] which it is yet necessary for me to tell, in order to fulfil my duty and to remove the clouds arising from rumors and letters that will go there. I am here and see everything; and there is never a lack of those who tell many new things, and exaggerate matters that are not so great as they will relate and descant there, where no one can report and declare what has happened. It is as follows.

Since that attack, we have made two others. The first was with five mines which we had made, with which we expected to blow up a great part of those walls. All of the mines were fired, and, thinking that they would cause the same effects as the others, our men retired farther than they ought to have done. Four of the mines exploded, and did not a little damage among the enemy. They, full of fear, fled down from their position; but, as the mines did not make the noise that we expected, we did not, accordingly, get there in time, as we were quite distant because of our fear lest the mines do us harm. The Moros retook their position, so that we were repulsed this time, as we had been the other—with the death of a captain, while some men were wounded. The fifth mine was left, and did not explode that time. Hence its mouth was looked for, and having found it, we tried two days after that to make another assault. The assault was made after the mine had exploded. That mine was larger than the others had been, and caused much damage. But the Moros fortified themselves again, with greater strength than they had the last two times; and defended themselves in their trenches, which had been fortified with many stockades and terrepleins, so that we could not enter. We lost some soldiers on that occasion, who tried to show that they were bold and valiant. Among them was the sargento-mayor Melon, who was struck by a ball which passed through him and carried him off in two days. May God rest his soul! Thereupon, we retired to our posts, and endeavored to collect our men and carry away the wounded, who were many. We have lost four captains of renown in these three assaults—namely, Captain Pimienta, Captain Juan Nicolas, Captain Don Pedro de Mena, and Sargento-mayor Gonzales de Caseres Melon. Besides these three assaults, another misfortune happened to us, on St. Matthew's day, which was as follows. Captain Rafael Ome, going with forty-six men and two hundred Indians to make a garo [17] (as we say here), and having taken up quarters in a field, where there was a fortified house, arranged his posts at intervals and ordered his men to be on their guard. But since man proposes and God disposes, the posts were either careless, or God ordained it thus; for suddenly the enemy rushed upon our men, who could not unite, as they were by that time scattered through the forest. The enemy, having caught them off their guard, made a pastime of it, killing twenty-six men, and carrying off arms, powder, balls, and fuses. I regard that event as the greatest of all our losses. Among those of our men killed there by the enemy was Captain Lopez Suarez, a fine soldier. Our men were not disheartened by these reverses, except such and such men. The governor well sustains the undertaking with [all his powers of] mind and body. He has surrounded the entire hill with a stockade and a ditch, and has sown the ground with sharp stakes so that the enemy may neither receive aid nor sally out from it. At intervals there are sentry-posts and towers, so close that they almost touch. There were six barracks along it, so that if any tower should be in need the soldiers in them could go to its defense. Some of them have six men, others four, and those which have least three men, as a guard. The enclosure is one legua long and surrounds the hill. I do not know which causes the more wonder, the fort of the Moros or the enclosure of the Spaniards—which restrains the Moros, so that they issue but seldom, and then at their peril. We are day by day making gradual advances. Today a rampart was completed which is just even with their stockades, so that we shall command the hill equally [with the enemy]. God helping, I hope that we shall reduce their trenches, and then we shall advance from better to better. May God aid us; and si Dominus a custodierit civitatem frustra vigilat qui custodit eam. [18] Father, prayers and many of them are needed. Will your Reverence have them said in your holy college, and excuse me and all of us for what we can not do. I forward this letter, [hoping] for its good fortune in the holy sacrifices of your Reverence, etc. Jolo, March 31, 1638. To the father-prior of Manila.

Pax Christi, etc.

I would like to be the bearer of this letter, and to fulfil my desires of seeing your Reverence and all the fathers and brothers of your Reverence's holy college. That is a proposition for which credit may be given me, but the time gives space only to suffer; and thus do we have to accommodate ourselves to it, and to check our desires, drawing strength from weakness. I must content myself with writing, which would be a pleasant task, if I could do it at my leisure, and not so hastily as I have made known in certain letters that I have sent to your Reverence—not losing or neglecting any occasion at which I could write. And so that this opportunity should not pass without a letter from me, I have hastened my pen beyond my usual custom, and have written very concisely and briefly—although I could write at greater length, and give account of many things which I leave for a better occasion. That will be when it is the Lord's pleasure for us to see each other. Moreover, I have no pleasant news to write, since that which I could write would all be to the effect that we have not gained this enchanted hill; and that, at the times when we have tempted fortune, we have retired with loss of some men and many wounded.

Continuing, then, in the same style as the last letter, I declare that since the first assault, in which we were driven back with the loss of Captain Don Pedro Mena Pando, Adjutant Oliva, and Alferez Trigita, we have made two other assaults. One was on the twenty-fourth of March, the eve of our Lady of the Assumption. The second was on the twenty-eighth of the same month. In the first, we trusted to the mines that had been made, by means of which we expected to make a safe entrance. We would have made it had our fear of receiving harm from them matched the little fear of the enemy—who, as barbarians, did not prepare for flight, although they knew our designs. Of the five mines, four blew up; and as was seen, and as we afterward learned here from some captives, there was a great loss to the enemy. As soon as they saw the fire, they took to flight; but our men, being at a distance, could not come up to seize the posts that the enemy abandoned, until very late. That gave the Moros time to take precautions, so that when we had come up, it was impossible to gain a single thing which the mines had given us. On that occasion both sides fought very valiantly. The wounded on our side were not many, and our dead even fewer; among the latter was Captain Pimienta. We were forced to return to our posts without having gained more than the damage wrought by the mines. The loss of those people was considerable, while not few of them perished because of the severity of our fire. But with the opportunity of the fifth mine which remained (which could not have its effect, because the fire-channel of the others choked it), the third attack was made inside of two days, by first setting fire to that mine, and by arranging the men better than on the day of the previous assault. They were set in array by the governor, who in person came up to these quarters on that occasion. They set fire to the mine, and more was accomplished than on the preceding days. Many of the enemy were killed; but, as the entrance was so deeply recessed, it could not be forced so freely by us, for the Moros were able to defend it from us, with so great valor that we could not take it. Our men fought with so great spirit and courage that it was necessary for the leaders to use force with them in order to get the men to retire, when they saw the so superior force of the enemy. On that occasion they killed seven of our men, besides wounding many. Among the latter was Sargento-mayor Melon, who was shot through the lung by a ball. He died on the second day, to the grief of all this army. Thereupon his Lordship made his men retire to their quarters, and commanded that the fort should not be attacked, but that they should proceed to gain it by the complete blockade of the enemy, as we are doing. By this method, I think that we shall make an entrance into the fort. Already we have one bulwark, which we have made level with their entrenchments; and we are raising our works one and one-half varas above them, so that we are dislodging them with our artillery. They are retiring to the interior of their fort. By this means we hope to gain entrance into all their forts; and, once masters of them, I trust by God's help that we shall conquer their stronghold, and that they will humble themselves to obey God and the king.

Before those assaults, on St. Matthew's day, Captain Raphael Ome went out to make a garo, as they say here, and to overrun the country. In this island the level country is heavily wooded as nearly all of it is mountainous. [19] He took in his company about fifty men [i.e., Spaniards] and two hundred Caraga Indians. The captain reached a field, and having lodged in a fortified house, such as nearly all those houses are (for those Indians of the mountain, who are called Guimennos, [20] build them for their defense), he placed his sentries and seized the positions that he judged most dangerous. But since non est volentis neque currentis, etc., either because of the great multitude and the wiliness of the enemy, or (as is more certain) because the sentries were careless, and the other men asleep, the enemy came suddenly and attacked our soldiers—with so great fury that they killed twenty-six men, among whom was Captain Lopez Suarez, a brave soldier. The leader and captain, Ome, was in great danger. He fought in person with so great valor that, although run through with a spear, he attacked and defeated his opponent, laying him dead at his feet. Few of our men aided him, and many of them retreated immediately, thus allowing the enemy to capture from us twenty firearms, with fuses, powder, and balls. That was a great loss, and it is certain that we have not hitherto had a greater. And if any loss has occurred, it has been due to the neglect and confidence of the Spaniard.

Today two Bassilan Indians came down from the hill to ask for mercy, and for passage to their own country. They say that they are sent by the datos in the stronghold who came from that island of Bassila or Taquima; and that, if permission and pardon were given to them by the pari [i.e., Corcuera], one hundred and thirty of them would come down in the morning. We regard this as a trick of that Moro; and, although it may be as they say, we are taking precautions, and are watching for whatever may happen. It they should come, they will be well received; and that will not be a bad beginning to induce others to come from the hill. I shall advise your Reverence of such event on the first occasion. What we know that they are suffering within [the fort] is the disease of smallpox and discharges of blood, together with great famine; because we have surrounded the entire hill with ditches and stockades, set with sharp stakes, which run around it for more than one and one-half leguas, and within musket-shot [of their fort] is a sentry-post [garita] or tower in which three men and three Bantayas are staying. By that means the enemy cannot enter or go out without being seen; and, when they do that, they are given such a bombardment that scarcely does any one dare to go outside of their walls. The hill is a beautiful sight, and if it were enjoying holy peace instead of war, it would be no small matter of entertainment and recreation to survey the landscape at times. The Moro does not like to see us, and is looking at us continually from his stronghold and yelling and scoffing at us—as they say sometimes that the Spaniards are chickens; again, that they are sibabuyes; [21] and again, that they will come to set fire to us all, and kill us. The Moro is a great rascal and buffoon. I trust in God that in a little while He will be ready for our thanksgivings [for the defeat of the Moros]. Will your Reverence urge His servants to aid us with their sacrifices and prayers. Those, I believe, it will be that must give us the victory, and that must humble the arrogance of this Mahometan. His Lordship is displaying great firmness and patience, as he is so great a soldier. Already has he almost raised a stone fort on the beach, for he intends to leave a presidio here, and I think that it will be almost finished before he leaves. Nothing else occurs to me. Of whatever else may happen, your Reverence will be advised on the first occasion. If I have gone to considerable length in this letter, it is because I have known, one day ahead, of the departure of this champan. I commend myself many times to the holy sacrifices of your Reverence. This letter will also serve for our father provincial, etc. Jolo, April 5, one thousand six hundred and thirty-eight.

The Moro has returned today with a letter from the queen and all the stronghold, in which they beg pardon and humiliate themselves. May God grant it, and bring them to His knowledge. I shall advise you of the result. I hear that Dato Achen is dead. If that is so, then the end has come. Today, the sixth of the above month.

Pax Christi

Deo gracias qui dedit nobis victoriam per Jesum Christum Dominum nostrum. [22] I have written your Reverence another letter, by way of Othon, telling you that it was our Lord's pleasure to give us a joyous Easter-tide, the beginning of what has happened. His Divine Majesty has chosen to bestow upon us an overflowing blessing, by the reduction of these Moros so that they should come, abased and humiliated, to beg His governor for mercy; for, whether it was the latter's plan to go to treat for peace at Basilan for their men, or whether they should send them all, that they might see how the governor viewed their petition, the following day they came with letters from the queen [23] for Father Pedro Gutierrez and his Lordship. Therein she begged the father to protect her, for she wished to come to throw herself at the feet of the hari of Manila, and to beg his pardon for the obstinacy that they had shown hitherto. The father answered for his Lordship, in regard to the pardon, that if they agreed to do what was right, they would be very gladly pardoned; but that in regard to their coming it was not time, until they would humbly give up the arms which they had taken from us, and the captives, vessels, and holy ornaments; and that, even though the queen had so great authority, so long as the king did not come, he must declare and show his willingness to accept what the queen had written. Accordingly, the king wrote to the same father and to his Lordship next day, begging the same thing and more earnestly. But he was not allowed to come—which he urgently entreated—until they should have given up the arms and other things of which they had robbed us. Difficulties arose over this point, as to which of the two things was to be done first. The Moro declared that he wished to treat first of the peace, and the points on which they were to agree; and therefore it was necessary to see the hari of Manila first of all. But Don Sebastian, as he was so experienced in these matters of war (in which God has inspired him with so wise resolutions, and given him even better results), held firm to his proposals. Two days passed, but at last the king agreed to the terms, by giving up the pieces of artillery which he had captured from us. There were four iron pieces; and, in place of one which had burst, one of bronze was requested, which many mines had buried. Afterward we found the broken piece, by opening the mouth of one of the mines; and he gave it to us willingly—saying that he had thus brought the broken piece, and that he ought not for that reason to give another in its place; and that that which had been asked from him had been bought for forty basines of gold at Macazar. In order that the Spaniards might see what an earnest desire for a permanent peace was in his heart, and that he was greatly inclined to it, he sent also some muskets, although few and poor ones. In what pertained to the captives, he said that he would surrender those that he had, but that he could not persuade his datos to give up theirs; still he would ask them to give their captives. At most, he sent eleven Christian captives, counting men, women, and children. He had already spent the holy vessels, for, since it was so long a time since they had been brought, he had sold them to the king of Macazar; but he said that he and all his property were there, to satisfy the Spaniards for any injury that they had received. The king petitioned his Lordship to allow him to visit him; and his Lordship granted such permission for Quasimodo Sunday.

The dattos [sic] were very angry that the king was so liberal, and because he humbled himself so deeply; accordingly, they opposed his leaving the hill to talk with the governor. They tried to prevent it, but the king overruled everything by the reasons which he gave to the datos, and which Father Gregorio Belin gave to him. His Lordship gave hostages for the king, and ordered Captain Marquez and Captain Raphael Ome to remain as such. They asked for Admiral Don Pedro de Almonte and two fathers, but that was not granted to them. Finally they were satisfied with the two said captains, persons of great esteem and worth; and the king came down to talk with his Lordship, accompanied by many chief men. His Lordship received him with such display as he could arrange at short notice, under a canopy of damask, and seated on a velvet chair, with a cushion of the same at his feet. Another cushion was placed at his side upon a rug. As the king entered the hall, his Lordship rose from his seat, and advancing two steps, embraced the Moro king; then he made him sit down on the cushion that had been prepared. Then his Lordship also seated himself beside the king in his chair, while at his right side was his confessor, and at his left stood a captain of the guard and the sargento-mayor. Grouped behind the confessor were the fathers who were in the quarters on that occasion. There were two Augustinian Recollects, and one Franciscan Recollect, and a secular priest. Then came Father Gutierrez, and Father Gregorio Belin. The king requested permission to rest a little first, for he came, one of his servants fanning him [haciendole paypay], lifting up from time to time the chinina which he wore—open in front, in order to catch the breeze, and to enable him to shelter himself from the heat, or to get rid of the fears with which he had come. His chief men seated themselves after him on that open floor, a seat very suitable for such nobility, who esteemed it as a great favor. Then when the king was rested, or reassured from his fears, they began their discourses or bicharas, talking, after the manner of these people, by the medium of interpreters—namely, Father Juan de Sant Joseph, an Augustinian Recollect, and Alferez Mathias de Marmolejo, both good interpreters. The governor set forth his conditions. The agreement made was: first, that the banners of the king our sovereign were to be hoisted on the stronghold; second, that the men from Vasilan were to be permitted to leave the stronghold and go to their country; third, that the Macazars and Malays were also to leave and return to their own lands; and fourth, in order that the first condition might be fulfilled without the rattle of arms and the shedding of blood, all the enemy were to come down to our quarters, while the king and queen and their family could come to that of the governor. The Moro king did not like this last point; but as he saw that matters were ill disposed for his defense, he had to assent to everything. But, before its execution, he begged his Lordship to communicate the terms with his men and datos, saying that he would endeavor to get them all to agree to the fulfilment of what his Lordship ordered; and that in a day and a half he would reply and, in what pertained to the other conditions, they would be immediately executed. This happened, for the Basillans descended in two days with all their men and families—in all, one hundred and forty-seven. Some fifty or sixty did not then descend, as they were unable to do so. The Macazars refused to descend until they received pardon from his Lordship, and a passport to their own country. Therefore their captain came to talk with his Lordship, who discussed with him what was to be done with him and his men. The latter are very humble and compliant to whatever his Lordship should order. His Lordship answered that he would pardon their insolent and evil actions, and they could descend with security of life; and that he would give them boats, so that they could go away. Thereupon the captain, giving a kris [24] as security that they would come, returned, and immediately began to bring down his property and men. The Malays came with them, for all those peoples had united against the Castilians. They are the ones who have done us most harm with their firearms, and have furnished quantities of ammunition for all the firearms of the Joloans. At the end of the time assigned to the king for answering his Lordship in regard to the matters which he had discussed with him, he was summoned, in order that what had been recently concluded might not be hindered, as his Lordship had many matters to which to attend. If he would not come, his Lordship was resolved immediately to continue his bombardment and fortifications, saying that he would make slaves of all whom he captured. With this resolution, the queen determined to come to visit his Lordship; and, so saying and doing, she summoned her chair, and had herself carried down to the quarters of Don Pedro de Almonte—which is the one located on their hill, and which has given them so much to do. She sent a message to the governor, begging him to grant her permission, as she wished to see him. His Lordship sent a message to her, to the effect that he would be very glad to see her, and that she would be coming at a seasonable time. She came to the hall borne on the shoulders of her men, accompanied by some of her ladies and by her casis, who was coming with pale face. She alighted at the door of his Lordship's hall. He went out to receive her, and with marked indications of friendship and kindness led her to her seat, which was a cushion of purple velvet; and his Lordship, seated in his own chair, welcomed her through his interpreter, Alferez Mathias de Marmolexo. She responded very courteously to the courtesies of the governor; for the Moro woman is very intelligent, and of great capacity. She did not speak directly to the interpreters, but through two of her men, one of whom was the casis; and often he, without the queen speaking, answered to what was proposed. The queen petitioned and entreated the governor to desist from entering the stronghold, for the women, being timid creatures, feared the soldiers greatly. And if his Lordship was doing it to oblige her and the king her husband to descend, she said that they would descend immediately, with all their people. Thus did she entreat from him whom his Lordship represented; and I desired that she should obtain this favor. His Lordship answered her that he would do so very willingly; but that he had an express mandate for it [i.e., to gain the fort] from his king, and that, if he did not obey it, he would lose his head. "I do not wish," said Toambaloca (for such is the name of the queen), "that the favor which I petition be at so great a price and danger to your Lordship. Consequently, will you kindly grant me three days? and in that time I, the king, and our people will descend without fail." His Lordship thanked her anew, and added that with this she obliged him to fulfil strictly what he had promised her. "Indeed," said the queen, "I have no doubt of it; for, being in the gaze of so many nations that your Lordship has to conquer, it is clear that you must fulfil what you have promised me; for your Lordship's actions toward me would be understood by all to be those that you would have to perform toward all." This terminated the discussion. His Lordship ordered a collation to be spread for the queen and her ladies; and then his Lordship retired, so that they might refresh themselves without any embarrassment. Then, having dined, the queen returned to her stronghold with the retinue that she had brought. Before she left the quarters she was saluted by the discharge of two large pieces of artillery, which had been made ready for that purpose. She was greatly pleased by that, and the next day began to carry out her promises, by sending down a portion of her possessions. The Macasars and Malays also brought down their property with hers, and immediately embarked. I had written up to this point to this day, Saturday, the seventeenth of this month of April, hoping for the end of all these incipient results and expected events regarding this stronghold; the issue has been such as we could expect from Him who has also been pleased to arrange and bring it to pass. Last night the queen came down to sleep in our camp or quarters, with some of her ladies. In the morning she went to report her good treatment to her people; for she was received with a salute of musketry and large artillery, and a fine repast. All that has been done to oblige her to encourage her people, for they were very fearful, to descend immediately. More than two thousand have now descended, and our banners are flying on the hill, and our men are fortified on it. May God be praised, to whom be a thousand thanks given; for He, without our knowledge or our expectations, has disposed this matter thus—blinding this Moro and disheartening him, so that, having been defeated, he should surrender to our governor, and give himself up without more bloodshed. We are trying to secure Dato Ache; if we succeed in this, I shall advise you. Now there is nothing more to say, reverend Father, except to give God the thanks, for He is the one who has prepared and given this victory to us; and to beg all in your Reverence's holy college to give thanks that the college has had (as I am very certain) so great a share in the achievements [here]. The governor is very much pleased, and we all regard him in the proper light. The men are full of courage, and even what was carefully done is now improved. I am your Reverence's humble servant, whom I pray that God may preserve as I desire, and to whose sacrifices I earnestly commend myself. Jolo, April 17, 1638.

Juan de Barrios

All the Joloans descended, in number about four thousand six hundred, to the sea. Finding themselves down and outside the enclosure, they all fled, under cover of a very heavy shower of rain—leaving all their possessions, in order not to be hindered in their flight. Many mothers even abandoned their little children. One abandoned to us a little girl who had received a dagger-stroke, who received the waters of baptism and immediately died. There is much to say about this, and many thanks to give to God, of which we shall speak when it pleases God to let us see each other. Today, the nineteenth of this month of April, 1638.


The governor sent messages to the king and queen by two casis, asking why they had fled. They replied that since all their people had fled, they had gone after them for very shame, but that they would try to bring them back and to come, and this was the end of the matter. The result was exceedingly profitable for our soldiers and Indians; for the Joloans, fearful because they thought that, if they became scattered, they would all be killed, abandoned whatever they were carrying—quantities of goods, and chests of drawers—which our soldiers sacked. Above, in the stronghold, they found much plunder. It is believed that the king and queen will return, but not Dato Ache; but this is not considered certain.

Letter from Sanboangan

Pax Christi

I am not writing to anyone [else], for the lack of time does not allow me to do so. Therefore will your Reverence please communicate this to the father provincial, Father Hernandez Perez; Father Juan de Bueras, and the father rector of Cavite.

When our men were most disheartened at seeing that the fortress on the hill was so extensive, and that it was becoming stronger daily; that the mines and artillery had seemingly made no impression on it; that we had been repulsed four times; and that our men were falling sick very rapidly: in order that it might be very evident that it was [all] the work of God, ambassadors came from the hill to beg his Lordship for mercy. He received them gladly, and asked them for the artillery that they had plundered from the Christians, etc. They brought down four pieces, which they had taken from the shipyard, and brought to us some Christians. Next day, more than one hundred and fifty people from Basilan descended, who surrendered their arms, and then about fifty Macazars, who did the same; and all were embarked in the patache.

Next day the king and queen went down and slept in the camp of Don Sebastian. On the following day (which was the day agreed upon when all were to descend from the hill), seeing that it was already late, the king and queen said that they would go to get their people. The governor granted them permission, and went to a camp that was located opposite the gate of the stronghold. All the Joloans descended, carrying their goods, arms, etc., to the number of about four hundred soldiers, and more than one thousand five hundred women, children, old men, etc. They reached the governor's camp and Don Pedro de Francia told the king that they must surrender their arms. The latter replied that he would surrender them to none other than to the governor. Thereupon, they went to summon his Lordship; but the Joloans, seeing that they were going to summon him, fled, under a heavy shower that was falling, and abandoned all their goods. A vast amount of riches, many pieces of artillery, and versos, falcons, muskets, arquebuses, etc., were found. The cause of the Moros fleeing was their great fear that they were to be killed. On our part, since Don Sebastian Hurtado held all their stronghold, and had left only thirty men in his quarters (in order that Dato Ache might not escape), and as that number could not resist so many people, the Joloans were, on the contrary, allowed to go without any firearms being discharged.

More than two hundred and fifty of the Joloans have died, and they were perishing in great numbers from dysentery because the women and children were placed under ground for fear of the balls. That and the fear of the mines caused their surrender; for it was impossible to take their fort by assault. The interior strength of that stronghold is so great that the Spaniards were surprised; and all recognize that it has been totally the work of God, and [a result of] the perseverance of Don Sebastian, who ever said that all must die or capture the stronghold. Somewhat more than two hundred Christians and more than one hundred Moro women have come from the stronghold during this time. All the Moro women are fearful. Up to date eighty-three Spaniards have died from wounds, and many of them from disease.

The killed

Sargento-mayor Melon Captain Don Pedro de Mena Captain Juan Nicolas Captain Pimienta Captain Lope Suarez

Died of dysentery

Captain Don Aregita Martin de Avila Adjutant Oliba Adjutant Calderon Alferez Concha Alferez Alonso Goncalez

I shall not name others, as they are not so well known, and it will be known later. Up to date about two hundred Bisayan Indians have died, most of them from diseases. Don Pedro Cotoan died while en route from Jolo to Sanboangan, in order to take back the Bisayans, who are a most cowardly race. Those who have done deeds of valor are the Caragas, and the Joloans tremble at sight of them. Don Pedro Almonte remains as governor and lieutenant for the captain-general at Sanboangan, with one hundred and fifty Spaniards, as has been reported. Captain Jines Ros is to stay as castellan in Jolo with one hundred and eighty men—Captain Sarria being fortified in the stronghold with eighty men, and Jines Ros on the beach in a stone tower that is already eight stones high, with one hundred men. Captain Marquez is going to Buaren with fifty Spaniards, although no succor had been sent to Don Sebastian from Manila. All that has been supplied to excess is truly wonderful, for the winds have brought (and it is incredible) many champans, with more than twenty thousand baskets of rice, innumerable fowls, and pork, veal, beef, and cheeses from Zebu, which have made a very excellent provision.

They ask for Father Martinez [and] Alexandro [25] at Jolo [and] Father Carrion at Buiaon, but without an associate. I say that, following even to the end of the world, I do not know to what to compare these Moros of Samboangan. They have paid all their tributes. This is a brief relation. I pray your Reverence to pardon me and commend me to God, for indeed what I desire is necessary. Sanboangan, April 23, 1638. [26]


Laws regarding religious in the Philippines. Felipe II, Felipe III, Felipe IV; 1585-1640. Jesuit missions in 1656. Francisco Colin, S.J.; 1663. The religious estate in the Philippines. Juan Francisco de San Antonio, O.S.F.; 1738. Religious condition of the islands. Juan J. Delgado, S.J.; 1751-54 Ecclesiastical survey of the Philippines. Guillaume le Gentil; 1781. Character and influence of the friars. Sinibaldo de Mas; 1843. The ecclesiastical system in the Philippines. Manuel Buzeta and Felipe Bravo, O.S.A.; 1850. Character and influence of the friars. Feodor Jagor; 1873. The Augustinian Recollects in the Philippines. [Unsigned;] 1879. Present condition of the Catholic religion in Filipinas. Jose Algue, S.J., and others; 1900.

Sources: The material of this appendix is obtained from the following works: Recopilacion de las leyes de Indias (Madrid, 1841), lib. i, tit. xiv; also tit. xii, ley xxi; tit. xv, ley xxxiii; and tit. xx, ley xxiv, from a copy in the possession of the Editors. Colin's Labor evangelica (Madrid, 1663), pp. 811-820; from a copy in the possession of Edward E. Ayer, Chicago. San Antonio's Chronicas (Manila, 1738), i, book i, pp. 172-175, 190-210, 214-216, 219, 220, 223-226; from a copy in possession of Edward E. Ayer. Delgado's Historia general (Manila, 1892), pp. 140-158, 184-188; from a copy in possession of the Editors. Le Gentil's Voyages duns les mers de l'Inde (Paris, 1781), pp. 170-191; 59-63; from a copy in the library of the Wisconsin State Historical Society. Mas's Informe sobre el estado de las Islas Filipinas en 1842 (Madrid, 1843), vol. ii; from a copy in possession of James A. Robertson. Buzeta and Bravo's Diccionario de las Islas Filipinas (Madrid, 1850), ii, pp. 271-275, 363-367; from a copy in possession of James A. Robertson. Jagor's Reisen in den Philippinen (Berlin, 1873), pp. 94-100; from a copy in the Mercantile Library, St. Louis. Provincia de San Nicolas de Tolentino de Agustinos descalzos (Manila, 1879); from a copy in possession of Edward E. Ayer. Archipielago filipino (Washington, 1900), ii, pp. 256-267; from a copy in the library of the Wisconsin State Historical Society.

Translations: These are made (partly in full, and partly in synopsis) by James A. Robertson.


[The following laws governing religious in the Philippines are taken from Recopilacion leyes de Indias, lib. i, tit. xiv.]


Inasmuch as some of the religious who minister in the Filipinas Islands are accustomed to go to China without the proper orders, leaving the missions which are in their charge, whence follow many troubles and losses to what has been commenced and established in the instruction and education of the Indians because of the lack that they occasion, we charge the superiors of the regulars in the Filipinas Islands not to allow any of the religious of their orders to go to China, or to abandon the missions in their charge, without the special permission and order of the governor and archbishop, which shall expressly state that such religious is not going in violation of this law; and great care and vigilance shall be exercised in this. Further, we order that the religious who shall go to the said islands at our cost, and who are assigned to live there permanently, shall not go nor shall they be permitted to go to the mainland of China, or to other places, without permission from the governors and archbishops, since we send them to fulfil our obligation to impart instruction to our vassals. No lay Spaniard shall give them a fragata or ship's supplies without our special order, or the permission of the governors and archbishops, notwithstanding any privileges that they may urge. [27] [Felipe II—Barcelona, June 8, 1585; Toledo, May 25, 1596; Felipe IV—in the Recopilacion.]


We order our viceroys of Nueva Espana to give license for the preaching of the holy gospel, the conversion and instruction of the natives, and for everything else that is usual, to the discalced Carmelite religious whom their order shall send from Mejico for that purpose to the Filipinas Islands, Nuevo-Mejico, and other parts; and in order that those religious may be encouraged and incited to serve our Lord in that apostolic labor, the viceroys shall protect and aid them as far as possible. [Felipe II—Madrid, June 9, 1585.]


We charge the provincials, priors, guardians, and other superiors of these our kingdoms and of those of Nueva Espana not to prevent or obstruct the voyage of the religious who, after receiving our permission, undertake to go, together with their commissaries, to engage in the conversion and instruction of the natives of the Filipinas Islands. Rather shall they give those religious the protection and aid that is fitting. [Felipe II—Monzon, September 5, 1585.]


In consideration of the expenses incurred by our royal estate in the passage of religious to the Filipinas Islands, of the need [for religious] caused by those who return, and of the place that they occupy on the ships, and the fact that some persuade others not to go to those parts, we order our governors of the said islands to meet with the archbishop whenever any religious shall be about to leave those islands for these kingdoms or for other parts; and, after conferring with him, they shall not grant those religious permission to leave the islands except after careful deliberation and for very sufficient reasons. [Felipe II—San Lorenzo, August 9, 1589; Felipe III—Madrid, June 4, 1620.]


We order our viceroys and governors of Nueva Espana, and charge the superiors of the orders—each one so far as he is concerned—to see to it with all diligence and special care that the religious sent to the Filipinas Islands pass thither without being detained. They shall not be allowed in other provinces, nor shall any excuse be accepted. [Felipe II—Aranjuez, April 27, 1594; Felipe III—San Lorenzo, September 17, 1611.]

[The following law taken from titulo xv of this same libro is here inserted.]


Inasmuch as we have been informed that the religious sent on our account to the Filipinas Islands for new spiritual conquests will accomplish greater results if each order is set apart by itself, we order the governor and captain-general, and charge the archbishop, that when this circumstance occurs, and for the present, together they divide, for the instruction and conversion of the natives, the provinces in their charge among the religious of the orders, in such manner that there shall be no Franciscans where there are Augustinians, nor religious of the Society where there are Dominicans. Thus each order shall be assigned its respective province, and that of the Society shall charge itself with the [care of] missions; for it is under this obligation that they are to remain in those provinces, as do the other orders, and in no other manner. [Felipe II—Aranjuez, April 27, 1594.]


The Audiencia of Manila shall give what is needful in ships, ship-stores, vestments, and the other customary supplies, to the religious who shall have license and permission to enter China or Japon, according to the ordinances. Our officials of those islands shall execute and pay for what the presidents and auditors shall order and authorize for that purpose. [Felipe II—El Pardo, November 30, 1595.]


It is fitting for the service of God our Lord and our own that, when any religious are to go to preach and teach the holy Catholic faith to the heathen who live in the kingdoms of China, Japon, and other places, they shall not enter the country of those barbarians in such a way that the result that we desire should not be obtained. Therefore we declare and order that no one of the religious who live in the Filipinas Islands be allowed to go to the kingdoms of China and Japon, even though with the purpose of preaching and teaching the holy Catholic faith, unless he should have permission for it from the governor of Filipinas. Whenever there is a question of sending religious to China or Japon, or permission is asked for it, our president and auditors of the royal Audiencia of Manila shall meet in special session with the archbishop and the provincials of all the orders of the Filipinas, and they shall consult over and discuss the advisable measures for the direction of that holy and pious intent. They shall not allow any religious to go to the kingdoms of infidels without a previous permission of the archbishop and governor, with the assent of all who shall be at the meeting. In order that this may be done, our president and Audiencia shall give and cause to be executed all the orders that may be necessary. Such is our will. [Felipe II—Madrid, February 5, 1596; Felipe IV—Madrid, December 31, 1621; February 16, 1635; November 6, 1636; September 2, 1638; July 12, 1640; in this Recopilacion.]


Our viceroys of Nueva Espana shall protect the religious who go to the Filipinas Islands by our order and at our account; and the officials of our royal estate and all our other employees shall give them speedy despatch and shall treat them well. They shall collect no duty for their persons, their books, and the warrants which are given them on which to collect the cost of the voyage. [Felipe III—Madrid, September 18, 1609.]


His Holiness, Paul V, promulgated a brief at our request, dated Roma, June eleven, one thousand six hundred and eight, in order that the religious of the orders of St. Dominic, St. Francis, and St. Augustine may go to Japon to preach the holy gospel, not only by way of the kingdom of Portugal, but by way of any other country; and it is advisable for the service of God our Lord that that brief be duly fulfilled. We order our viceroy of Nueva Espana and the governor of the Filipinas Islands, and charge the prelates of the islands, to cause it to be obeyed and fulfilled, with the conditions and licenses ordained by the laws of this titulo. [Felipe III—Madrid, February 8, 1610; Felipe IV—in the Recopilacion.]


We order our governor and captain-general of the Filipinas Islands that if there are any religious there who live in great scandal, and not according to their rules, habit, and profession, and others who have been expelled from their orders, whom the provincials cannot drive from that province because of the difficulty of embarking them for Megico, that he hasten to remedy this, as is necessary and as is most fitting to the service of God, our Lord, so that such religious may not remain in those parts. [28] [Felipe III—San Lorenzo, September 17, 1616.]


Inasmuch as briefs have been despatched by his Holiness, ordering the religious of the Order of St. Augustine in some of the provinces of Nueva Espana to elect in one chapter some of the Spanish religious who reside there, and in the next chapter religious born in the Indias, we ask and charge the superiors and chapters of the said order to observe the said briefs and cause them to be observed, in the form ordered by his Holiness—both in the provinces of Nueva Espana and in the Filipinas—since they have passed before our royal Council, and testimony has been given of their presentation. The same is to be understood in regard to the other orders and provinces of the Indias, which shall possess briefs for the alternativa, and under the same conditions. [Felipe IV—Madrid, September 28, 1629; August 1, 1633; and in the Recopilacion.]


Although it was determined that no religious except those of the Society of Jesus should go to Japon to preach the holy gospel for the space of fifteen years, and that the others who should try to go to those parts through the rules of their order or their particular devotion should be assigned the district to which they were to go, not permitting them to pursue their voyage by way of Filipinas or any other part of the Western Indias, but by way of Eastern India—notwithstanding that the precept for the propagation and preaching of the gospel is common to all the faithful, and especially charged upon the religious—we consider it fitting that the missions and entrances of Japon be not limited to only the religious of the Society of Jesus; but that the religious go and enter from all the orders as best they can, and especially from the orders that possess convents and have been permitted to go to and settle in our Western Indias. There shall be no innovation in regard to the orders that are prohibited by laws and ordinances of the Indias. Those laws are made not only for Eastern India but also for the Western Indias, in whose demarcation fall Japon and the Filipinas. It is easier and better for the religious of our crown of Castilla to make their entrances by way of the Western Indias. We straitly charge those who thus enter, from either direction, to maintain the greatest harmony and concord with one another, and to regulate the catechism and method of teaching—so that, since the faith and religion that they preach is one and the same thing, their teaching, zeal, and purpose may be so likewise. They shall aid one another in so holy and praiseworthy an object, as if all lived under and professed the same rule and observance. If the nature of the country and the progress in the conversion of its natives permit, the orders shall be divided into provinces, making the assignment of those provinces as shall appear best, so that, if possible, the religious of the various orders shall not mingle. If any of those religious who shall have been chosen are removed, others shall be assigned in their place, so that, as workers of the holy gospel, they shall labor in this work which is so to the service of God our Lord, each order separately. They shall not engage in quarrels or disputes, shall furnish a thoroughly good example, and shall avoid strictly all manner of trade, business, and commerce, and all else that shows or discloses a taint or appearance of greed for temporal goods. And since it will be necessary, in the further establishment and increase of the conversion in those provinces, to have therein three or four bishops, or more, from all the orders—in order that they may confirm, preach, ordain priests, meet whenever advisable, and discuss and enact what they think will be necessary to facilitate, augment, and secure for the conversion—they shall be suffragan, in so far as it concerns them, to the archbishopric of Manila, because of the nearness and authority of that church. That division of districts and dioceses shall be made by our Council of the Indias. [Felipe IV—Madrid, February 22, 1632.]

1  2  3  4  5  6  7     Next Part
Home - Random Browse