3. ✣ Born to the illustrious family of Portocarreros in
Plasensia in the region of Extremadura, Spain in
the early 16th century. He was one of the seven
children of Pedro Portocarrero, a captain of a
✣ Juan de Plasencia grew up during the period
known as the Siglo de Oro, a Golden Age when
arts and literature flourished in many parts of
Spain, among them his native Extremadura.
✣ Fray Joan de Puerto Carrero, del convento de
Villanueva de la Serena. Was his real name.
4. ARRIVAL IN THE PHILIPPINES
✣ Fray Juan de Plasencia came together with the
first batch of Franciscan missionaries in
✣ Arrived at a port in Cavite, a few kilometers south
of Manila on the 2nd of July 1578.
5. Purpose: Relacion de las
Costumbres and Instruccion
✣ To put an end to some injustices being committed
against the natives by certain government officials.
6. “The chronicler, Francis enemies, and so I can hardly express the
sadness I feel any time the news of such incidents reach my ears
or I myself am involved; however, if one is to choose between
enmity and friendship and between peace and war, I believe
enmity is to be preferred. For considering the kind of persons
most of the alcaldes mayores are nowadays, nothing indicates that
friendship with them will help the missions in any way. On the
contrary, it will destroy them. Because, as I have observed, you
can hardly find one that is not blinded and moved by greediness,
thus destroying his own soul as well as the lives and possessions of
the poor Indians.”
✣ OFM ARCHIVES – PHILIPPINES by: Fr. Jose
"Long" D. Gutay, OFM
✣ The Philippine Islands, 1493–1898 Volume VII,
1588–1591 (Edited and annotated by Emma Helen
Blair and James Alexander Robertson with historical
introduction and additional notes by Edward Gaylord
✣ The unit of government is called
Barangay ruled by a chieftain, and
consist of 30 to 100 families together
with their relatives and slaves.
19. Administration of Justice
✣ The chieftain’s executive function
includes implementing laws, ensuring
order and giving protection to his
✣ Disputes between individuals were
settled by a court made up of the
chieftain and council of elders.
✣ The 1st son of the barangay chieftain
inherits his father’s position; if the 1st
son dies, the 2nd son succeeds their
father; in the absence of male heirs, it
is the eldest daughter that becomes
✣ A person becomes slave by: (1) by
captivity in war, (2) by reason of debt,
(3) by inheritance, (4) by purchase, and
(5) by committing a crime.
✣ Slaves can be emancipated through: (1)
by forgiveness, (2) by paying debt, (3)
by condonation, and (4) by bravery
(where a slave can possibly become a
Datu) or by marriage.21
22. Marriage Customs
✣ Men were in general, monogamous; while their wives are
✣ Courtship begins with Paninilbihan.
✣ Prior to marriage the man requires to give a dowry: (1) Bigay-
kaya (a piece of land or gold); (2) Panghihimuyat (a gift for the
brides parents); (3) Bigay-suso (for brides wet nurse).
✣ Marriage between couples belonging to defferent social
classes were not common.
✣ Several grounds of divorce are: (1) Adultery, (2) Abandonment
on the part of the husband, (3) Cruelty, and (4) Insanity.
23. Religious Belief
✣ They worship many gods and goddesses:
(1) bathala, supreme being; (2) Idayanale,
god of agriculture; (3) Sidarapa, god of
death; (4) Agni, god of fire; (5) Balangaw,
god of rainbow; (6) Mandarangan, god of
war; (7) Lalahon, god of harvest; and (8)
Siginarugan, god of hell.
✣ Also believe in sacred animals and tress.
24. Superstitious Beliefs
✣ Believe in Aswang, Dwende, Kapre,
✣ They also believe in magical power of
amulet and charms such as anting-anting,
kulam and gayuma or love potion.
25. Economic Life
✣ Agriculture in the plane lands: planting of rice,
corn, banana, coconut, sugar canes and other kinds
of vegetable and fruits.
✣ Hunting in high lands.
✣ Fishing in river banks and sea.
✣ Shipbuilding, weaving, poultry, mining and
✣ Domestic trade of different barangays by boat.
✣ Foreign trade with countries like Borneo, China,
Japan, Cambodia, Java, and Thailand.
27. Language and System of Writing
✣ Major languages: Tagalog, Ilocano, Pangasinan,
Pangpangan, Sugbuhanon, Hiligaynon,
Magindanaw and Samarnon this languages is
originated from the Malayo-Polenisian language.
✣ System of writing: the alphabets consisted of 3
vowels and 14 consonants called Baybayi.
✣ They used tap of tress as ink and pointed stick as
✣ They wrote on large plant leaves, bark of a tree
or bamboo tubes.
✣ History of the Filipino People (Eighth
Edition) by Teodoro Agoncillo
✣ The Philippine Islands, 1493–1898
Volume VII, 1588–1591 (Edited and
annotated by Emma Helen
Blair and James Alexander
Robertson with historical introduction
and additional notes by Edward
Gaylord Bourne) 29