The Murillo Bulletin Issue No. 11

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The Murillo Bulletin Journal of PHIMCOS The Philippine Map Collectors Society

Issue No. 11

May 2021

A special issue on the

 Mapping of Panay 

3/F Glorietta 4 Artspace, Ayala Center, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines • T (+63 2) 7729-8168 • Fax 8824-3770

The Passages Between Panay..., U.S. Government Charts of 1933. With Corrections 1963 [detail].

The only Gallery in the Philippines exclusively selling antique prints and antiquarian books before 1900.

The Murillo Bulletin Issue No. 11

May 2021 In this Issue

PHIMCOS News & Events

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The Naming and Mapping of Panay in the 16 &

centuries by Raphael P.M. Lotilla


The Mapping and Charting of Panay in the 18th & 19th centuries by Raphael P.M. Lotilla




Felix Laureano and his Remembrances of Panay in the


century by Felice Noelle Rodriguez


Enrique Abella y Casariego’s ‘Isla de Panay – Bosquejo Geologico’ by Raphael P.M. Lotilla


The Geography of Panay Island Then and Now by Rosalyn D. Sontillanosa & Efren P. Carandang


Planning Iloilo City by Peter Geldart


PHIMCOS Trustees, Members & Committee Members


About PHIMCOS The Philippine Map Collectors Society (PHIMCOS) was established in 2007 in Manila as the first club for collectors of antique maps and prints in the Philippines. Membership of the society, which has grown to a current total of 35 individual members, 7 joint members, and 3 corporate members (with two nominees each), is open to anyone interested in collecting, analysing or appreciating historical maps, charts, prints, paintings, photographs, postcards and books of the Philippines. When possible, PHIMCOS holds quarterly general meetings at which members and their guests discuss cartographic news and give after-dinner presentations on topics such as maps of particular interest, famous cartographers, the mapping of the Philippines, or the lives of prominent Filipino collectors and historians. A major focus for PHIMCOS is the sponsorship of exhibitions, lectures and other educational events designed to educate the public about the importance of cartography as a way of learning both the geography and the history of the Philippines. The Murillo Bulletin, the society’s journal, is normally published twice a year. PHIMCOS welcomes new members. The annual fees, application procedures, and additional information on PHIMCOS are available on our website: Front Cover: Philippine Islands – Panay, Bureau of Coast and Geodetic Survey, Manila, 1931 (image courtesy of National Library of Australia; nla.obj-580714580) 1

PHIMCOS News & Events


N 2021 THE CLOUDS of the Covid-19 pandemic and the resulting community quarantines have continued to overshadow the Society’s activities, but the silver lining has been the success of our virtual meetings, arranged through Zoom. The first three webinars of the year were attended by large numbers of our members and their guests, from the Philippines and overseas. Indeed, these presentations were so well received that six of those guests have become new members (see page 76), to whom we extend our thanks for joining and say: Welcome to PHIMCOS!  On 27 January, Tom Harper, Lead Curator of Antiquarian Mapping at the British Library, gave a presentation titled Maps, Views and Everything Else: The Topographical Collection of George III. Illustrated with images of choice maps of the Philippines held in the library’s extensive collections, Tom’s talk covered the avid collecting activities of King George, the acquisition of the Topographical Collection by the British Library, and the enormous effort that has been undertaken to digitise the approximately 40,000 maps in the collection so they can be studied by researchers and map enthusiasts from across the world.

 On 24 February, Miguel Rodrigues Lourenço of the Universidade NOVA de Lisboa spoke on the topic of Forgotten renderings of the Philippines in Portuguese cartography of the 16th century. Miguel, who specializes in the history of Macau and the Philippines in the 16th and 17th centuries, explained how the continuous navigation along the shores of the archipelago by Portuguese explorers resulted in manuscript charts dating from 1535 to 1580 that show the earliest known representations of the Philippines and its toponyms.  On 7 April, in a presentation titled A Warrior’s Armament and Ornament, Edwin Bautista talked about his extensive collection of Philippine bladed weapons. Of particular interest were the weapons from Panay, including an elaborate sinapot talibóng, a long, tapering knife from Mount Baloy’s indigenous Mundo group. A book on Edwin’s collection, which he has donated to the Museo ng Kaalamáng Katutubò (Museum of Ethnic Knowledge), has been published by the museum as A Warrior’s Armament and Ornament: The Edwin R. Bautista Collection of Philippine Bladed Weapons (MusKKat, Mandaluyong, 2020).

PHIMCOS thanks the following for their generous support in making advanced bulk purchases of the special Panay issue of The Murillo Bulletin  

Senator Franklin M. Drilon 

Iloilo City Mayor Jerry P. Treñas  

Edwin R. Bautista 

Marie Constance Y. & Jaime C. González  

Mercedes Lagasca-Pesayco  

Lolita Mercado-Lotilla 

Other Friends of Panay 


On 4 May, PHIMCOS members were invited by the Cambridge Seminars in the History of Cartography to join a Zoom presentation by Peter Geldart titled Nicholas Norton Nicols and his maps of Mindanao, in which he discussed two previously-unpublished, manuscript Spanish maps of the island of Mindanao, dated 1762, now held in the UK Hydrographic Office Archive. As well as the maps, their titles and descriptive panels, the talk covered the colourful career of Nicholas Norton Nicols; the dramatic story of how the maps came into the possession of the Royal Navy; and their subsequent use by the EIC hydrographer Alexander Dalrymple.

 

With the expansion of our membership, PHIMCOS has undertaken a major overhaul of our website which we hope will enhance the Society’s image and widen our profile with other map societies, museums and libraries both in the Philippines and overseas. Under the guidance of the Communications Committee headed by Marga Binamira, the updated website presents a fresh image and a number of redesigned or new features, including:

 our new logo (see page 1);  weblinks to the museums and libraries with which PHIMCOS has established relationships;  weblinks to our Advertising Sponsors;  a revised About PHIMCOS page with a history of our events for the past seven years;  an Events Gallery with selected photographs of our exhibition openings and overseas trips;  a password-protected Members page;  an online Membership Application Form; and  a list of our Publications available for sale, which can be purchased online through PayPal for a price that includes delivery within Metro Manila; for delivery to the provinces and overseas, we will now accept orders subject to acceptance of the shipping costs. We also intend to make all past issues of The Murillo Bulletin available on the website, free of charge, in the form of e-books. Members are invited to comment on the new website; please let us know if you have suggestions or would like to see additional features included.


Specialist Antique & Art Dealers

Allain Manesson Mallett, Les Isles Philippines and Manille, Frankfurt 1684 copper engraving, later colour, each 14 cm x 9.8 cm Antique maps, prints, photographs, postcards, paintings & books


The Naming and Mapping of Panay in the 16th & 17th centuries by Raphael P.M. Lotilla


HE FIRST Spanish expeditions to the Philippines did not record visits to Panay, nor even mention the island – a fact that explains its absence from the earliest maps of the Philippine archipelago produced by Europeans. But the expedition led by Miguel López de Legazpi that reached the Philippines in 1565 marked a change, as accounts sent to Mexico and Spain mentioned Panay and the rest of the Visayan islands.(1) Pressed by the Portuguese, in 1569 Legazpi transferred his camp and settlement from Cebu to “the river of Panae”,(2) before settling in Manila in 1571. Panay would then commence its presence in the European cartographic imagination, in one form or another. Panoadas or Pouoades? According to Carlos Quirino,(3) various names were used to refer to Panay – although he cites no authorities or explanations for the linkage – with Gerard Mercator and Abraham Ortelius calling it “Panoadas”. In reality, Mercator in his 1569 world map featured an island with the name “Pauoadas” in the general area corresponding to the modern Philippines. On the other hand, Ortelius in his 1570 atlas Theatrum Orbis Terrarum included two maps with noticeable variations in how islands in the Philippine group were drawn, and with a slight difference in the names used for the island claimed to be Panay: (a) “Pauaodas”, in his map of Southeast Asia Indiae Orientalis Insularumque Adiacientium Typus, and (b) “Pouoades”, in his map of Asia Asiae Nova Descriptio. Thomas Suárez (4) traces the differences to the sources Ortelius used for his two maps: Indiae Orientalis was based on Mercator’s world map of 1569, whereas for Asiae Nova Descriptio Ortelius used his own, separately-published map of Asia of 1567, itself an improvement on the 1561 Giacomo Gastaldi map Terza Parte Dell'Asia (which does not name any island as “Pouoades”).

Detail of “Pauoadas” from Gerard Mercator's map of the world (1569) in the form of an atlas in the Maritiem Museum "Prins Hendrik" at Rotterdam (image courtesy of National Library of Australia

Quirino equivocated on whether this island with the slightly varying name was Panay. In his entry on the 1595 map Asia ex magna orbis terre descriptione Gerardi Mercatoris desumpta studio et industria (by Mercator’s grandson, also Gerard, republished from 1606 onwards by the elder Jodocus Hondius), he asked if a different island named “Punas” was Panay. A closer examination of the Philippine portion of this map shows a list of names of islands which includes “b. Punas”. To the east is an island with the name “Pauoadas”, the same name the elder Mercator used in his 1569 world map, and that Quirino elsewhere stated referred to Panay. In fact, in Indiae Orientalis … (which antedated the younger Mercator’s map) Ortelius placed both “Pauaodas” and “Punas” (between Philippina and Bohol) in the Philippine group, essentially the same as in the 1569 Mercator world map. Consequently, Quirino’s previous assertion that “Panoadas”, or its related variants, is indeed Panay cannot be regarded as definitive.


Details from Abraham Ortelius (1570): “Pouoades” in Asiae Nova Descriptio and “Pauaodas” in Indiae Orientalis (images courtesy of Barry Lawrence Ruderman Antique Maps Inc.)

In examining Portuguese maps of the Malay archipelago, Luis Thomaz (5) brings attention to an anonymous Portuguese manuscript portolan chart of c.1570, contained in an atlas attributed to Fernão Vaz Dourado,(6) which shows the lower outline of an island called “Pouoada”(7) north of Mindanao and northeast of “Costa de Cubo” and “I. de Matai”. Among the other maps cited by Thomaz is a c.1560 map of southeast Asia attributed to Bartholomeu Velho, from an anonymous atlas inserted in the Livro de Marinharia de João de Lisboa,(8) which shows “Panai”. As explained by Miguel Lourenço (9), quoting Consuelo Varela:(10) “Panaie” is the present-day island of Panaon, mentioned only once in Castilian documents during Villalobos’s expedition as “Panal”, an island which played little to no importance in the context of those surveys. … As such, its occurrence in Portuguese charts as the toponym of reference in the Surigao Strait is all the more surprising.

It presents the coasts of the islands that border on Mindanao Sea, and has the appearance of an original navigation sketch constructed on the principle of a portolan chart with special care given to the relative sizes and positions of the islands. In this sketch, the region surveyed includes a relatively small part of the archipelago, but what is delineated can easily be recognized by comparing it with [a contemporary U.S. map]. Mindanao is called ‘Caguindanao’. The island north of the eastern part of Mindanao corresponds to Dinagat Island. To the north of Dinagat we recognize the outline of Samar with the small islands off its coast named Islitas del Primer Surgidero (Islets of First Anchorage) which correspond to Tubabao, Hilaban, and Pasig Islands. Leyte is called “Abuyo”, and Panaon to the south of Leyte is called “Panay”. Cubu or Cebu carries the inscription Asientos de los Españoles (Seat of the Spaniards).(14)

Panay or Panaon? The confusion of Panaon with Panay was briefly noted by Quirino without any elaboration. With perhaps one exception,(11) the earliest inclusion of an island called Panay was in a c.1565 chart that shows the first anchorage site of the Legazpi expedition in the Philippines. The manuscript chart, held in the Archivo General de Indias in Sevilla,(12) is attributed to Pierres Pli (aka Pierre Plin),(13) a French pilot with the expedition who was hanged for mutiny in 1565. John Bach has pointed out that the island south of Leyte and north of Mindanao labeled “Panay” is, in actuality, Panaon. He described the “Legazpi map” as follows: 6

Detail of “Pouoada” from a c.1570 manuscript portolan chart attributed to Fernão Vaz Dourado (image courtesy of the Huntington Library, San Marino ©The Regents of the University of California)

From around the same period, a manuscript document Demarcacion y division de las indias, whose authorship is also ascribed to Velasco, has survived.(18) It includes a narrative descripttion of several islands corresponding to the ones identified in his map.(19) Panay is described as de treinta y cinco o cuarenta leguas de largo y de ancho doze y quinze, con un Puerto (of 35 or 40 leagues in length and in breadth 12 and 15, with a port). The Demarcacion was a Sumario (summary) of Velasco’s work Geografía y descripción universal de las Indias;(20) the full text was published only in 1894, with additional text and illustrations by Justo Zaragoza, in the Boletín de la Sociedad Geográfica de Madrid.(21) It contained essentially the same information about the island of “Panae”. Detail showing “Panay” (Panaon) from the c.1565 “Legazpi map” attributed to Pierres Pli (Pierre Plin) (image courtesy of the Archivo General de Indias)

Asiae Nova Descriptio by the engraver and mapmaker Giovanni Battista Mazza,(15) published in Venice by Donato Roscicotti in c.1589, is believed to be the first printed map to accurately depict and name the island of Luzon. “Pouoades” appears as a pyramid-shaped island below “Li duoi Mindara” and its reefs, separate from the islands of Luconia (Luzon), Paloan (Palawan), and Cuba (Cebu). In support of Quirino’s cryptic notes, the island is shown in approximately the actual location of Panay. Any speculation or doubt that may have existed in the 16th century about Panay could have been clarified with ease by reference to the 1575 manuscript map Descripcion delas Yndias del Poniente (16) of Juan López de Velasco.(17) Velasco was Cosmographer-Chronologist to King Philip II – a position created in 1571 when the Council of the Indies was reformed. His map may have given only the broadest outline of the Philippine island group, but it clearly located Panay between Buglas (an old name for Negros) and Mindoro. The islands are numbered, with their names listed under the Yslas Philipinas group as follows: 1. Mindoro, 2. Masbat, 3. Tandaya, 4. Panay, 5. Buglas, 6. Cubú, 7. Abúyo, 8. Matan, 9. Bohôl, 10. San Juan, and 11. Manila, with Mindanao and the outline of the lower part of Luzon (where Manila is marked) labeled separately.

In the late 16th century, access to either Velasco’s manuscript map or his narrative, complete or in summary, must have been limited even if other manuscript copies may have been made at various times. The ordinances governing the Council of the Indies tightly regulated the flow of information, including cartographic material created from reports sent to the Council from the Indies. The escribano (notary) of the Council acted as the archivist-librarian and gatekeeper.

Detail from the 1575 manuscript map Descripcion delas Yndias del Poniente by Juan López de Velasco; “Panay” is the island numbered 4 (image courtesy of the John Carter Brown Library)


Even the descriptions made by the royal Cosmographer-Chronologist were submitted annually to form part of el archivo del secreto (secret archive). Spanish documents on the Indies have also been described as being arcana imperii (state secrets) (22), and kept in an arca encorada roja (red leather-wrapped chest).(23) Wider dissemination of the Velasco map came only with the publication in Madrid in 1601 of the Historia General de los hechos de los Castellanos en las Islas i tierra firme del mar oceano by the Spanish historian Antonio de Herrera y Tordesillas, in which he included a printed map, Descripcion de las Indias del Poniente,(24) based on Velasco’s manuscript map. That the map was one of the earliest Spanish maps of the East Indies to see publication may be attributed to the fact that, as Ruan (op cit) has pointed out, Herrera “composed his Historia under Philip III, an environment that saw a relaxation of the secrecy that had governed historiography … under Philip II.” Herrera’s work was published in six languages and numerous editions.(25) In Herrera’s map, Panay’s name, shape and location remained unaltered from the Velasco map. However, errors were made in copying the names of some of the other islands from Velasco: Mindoro was erroneously written as Mindanao, and the separately-listed Mindanao itself was misnamed Mendana.(26)

Detail of “Panama” and adjacent islands from the c.1598 manuscript sea atlas by Martin Llewellyn (image courtesy of Digital Bodleian ©The Governing Body of Christ Church, Oxford)

The island of Panama Unfortunately the maps that predated Herrera’s publication exhibited strong staying power, and other names for Panay continued to be used for several more decades. For example, “Panama” was used as the preferred Portuguese toponym for Panay, probably dictated by the exigency to minimize confusion with Panaon, as discussed above. Quirino stated that Mercator used the name “Panama” for Panay in his later maps,(27) but this does not appear to be the case although later editions based on Mercator’s maps did show Panay as “Panama”. Suárez asserts that Jodocus

Hondius created two “beautiful new maps of Southeast Asia … for an enlarged issue of the Mercator Atlas of 1606”. These two entirely new maps were India Orientalis, which covers the entire Indian Ocean region, and Insulae Indiae Orientalis, Precipuae, In quibus Moluccae celeberrimae sunt, a map of Southeast Asia proper. He also points out that, geographically, these two new maps “largely followed the Bartolomeu Lasso pattern, adopting many of its idiosyncrasies …”.

Detail of Panay as “Panama”, oriented to the east, from Insulae Philippinae by Pieter van den Keere (1598) (from the collection of Peter Geldart) 8

Prior to the 1606 Hondius atlas, other Dutch mapmakers, including Petrus Plancius (28) and Jan Huygen van Linschoten,(29) used the name “Panama” for an island in the Philippine archipelago, based on Portuguese sources.

under the joint imprint of the printer Barent Langenes and the Amsterdam publisher Cornelis Claesz for the miniature atlas Caert-Thresoor (Map-treasury); Claesz then used the same plates to illustrate the first editions of P. Bertii Tabularum geographicarum contractarum, a geography book with Latin text by Petrus Bertius.  Philippinae Insulae, by Johannes Metellus, possibly copied from maps of the Italian Lafreri School, published in Cologne in 1601 in his Insularum orbis aliquot insularum.

Detail of “Panama” and adjacent islands from Insulae Indiae Orientalis Jodocus Hondius (1606) (from the collection of Christian Perez)

Plancius based his “Spice Map” on 25 classified manuscript sea charts made by the cartographer Bartolomeu Lasso. According to Quirino, van Linschoten’s maps “were drawn by or after Plancius from the most correct charts and rutters used today by the Portuguese pilots, based on those of Vaz Dourado”. However, Suárez states that while van Linschoten based his image of Southeast Asia on the work of Vaz Dourado, an exception was the Philippines which “appears to be a variant of the Lasso model, and is most obviously characterized by its peculiar east-west orientation for Palawan”. A fine, rather stylistic rendering of the island named “Panama”, sited between “Mindara”, “Negoes” and “Caebu”,(30) can be found in the atlas of 16 manuscript sea charts drawn on vellum by Martin Llewellyn in c.1598. Although its sources are not known with certainty, Tony Campbell has written that “Llewellyn's atlas has significance as the earliest known sea atlas expressly designed for navigation in the East, by a chartmaker of any nationality”; he speculates that Llewellyn may have sailed with Cornelis de Houtman on the first voyage made by Dutch ships to the East in 1595-97.(31) The earliest miniature maps of the Philippines on its own also feature Panay with the name “Panama”. These are: (32)  Insulae Philippinae, copied from van Linschoten, engraved by Pieter van den Keere (aka Petrus Kærius), first published in Middelburg in 1598

 Insulae Philippinae, by Cornelis van Wytfliet, copied from van Linschoten / van den Keere, published in Douai in 1605 in his Histoire universelle des indes occidentales et orientales.  Philippinae Insulae, copied from Plancius, engraved by Jodocus Hondius Junior, first published in Amsterdam in 1616 in a new, revised edition of Bertius’s Tabularum geographicarum contractarum.

The conclusion that the island labeled “Panama” is indeed Panay can be drawn from its relative size and position, as shown in all of the maps mentioned above as well as in the maps of Henricus Hondius, Asiae Nova Descriptio (1623) and Asia recens summa cura delineate (c.1631), and of John Speed, Asia with the islands adjoining (1626). “Panama” is shown either near Mindoro or between Mindoro and Negros. As to the use of the name Panama, the discussions summarized above converge on Portuguese sources obtained through the “resourcefulness” of the Dutch in copying, buying or stealing cartographic information from the Portuguese (see notes 28. & 29.). As pointed out by Lourenço, after Philip II of Spain ascended to the Portuguese throne, he became aware of errors in Portuguese maps in their representation of the Philippines.(33) Lourenço emphasizes that the principle of respecting the autonomy of Portugal from Spain under one monarch did not obviate the common need to optimize government resources, which presupposed a more systematic exchange of information between the two. As early as 1583, Philip II ordered Juan de Herrera and Bernadino de Escalante to share Spanish information with Portugal in order that the latter could proceed with the systematic correction of its maps.(34)


The result was “a new model of the Philippines in Portuguese cartography, with a layout and a toponymy conceived in a Castilian context.”(32) The composition of Portuguese maps of the Philippines underwent a revolution “built entirely in layout and toponymy” from the information resulting from the Spanish exploration of the islands since 1565. This “resulted in the complete abandonment of all the remaining graphic composition, replaced by new surveys of the main islands of the archipelago (Lução [Luzon], Masbate, Palawan, Mindoro, Panay, Cebú, Negros and Leyte) and others of a smaller dimension”, as exemplified by the maps executed by Sebastião Fernandes, Luís Teixeira and Bartolomeu Lasso.(32) Panay in Chinese maps The inclusion of “Panama” in European maps probably also explains why this island’s name in the Philippine group appeared in Chinese maps from the time of Matteo Ricci’s world maps, particularly the K’un yu wan kuo ch’uan t’u (35) of 1602. Pasquale M. d’Elia, in his publication on Ricci’s work,(36) included several tables reproducing the different regions on the Ricci map with the names of places and geographical features as translated into Italian. As part of his analysis, d’Elia provided tables of the pronunciation equivalents of the Chinese characters used in the map. In Table XVI, focused on Southeast Asia, he labeled several islands which are immediately associated with the Philippines and whose names had appeared on older European maps: Luzon, Filipina, Mindanao, and Matan (Mactan), which was cited prominently in European accounts as the island where Magellan was killed. Applying d’Elia’s table, the Chinese characters written on another island in the Philippines would have yielded the toponym “Pa-Na-Ma”. Despite that obvious result, d’Elia instead placed Palawan in his Table XVI, as he may not have been familiar with the island of “Panama” featured in late 16th century European maps. But he took care to reflect his uncertainty on whether the reference was to Palawan with a question mark after the name. He also placed a question mark after the island named Arrecifes, even though this had also appeared in older European maps.


Islands in the Philippine archipelago from Matteo Ricci’s “Great universal geographic map” (1602); the one in the middle has the characters for ““Pa-Na-Ma” (image courtesy of the Library of Congress)

Ricci arrived in Macao in 1583 and in Peking in 1601. In his preface to the 1602 world map he stated: “I made a series of selections from the maps and books which I had brought with me, as well as from the notes and diaries of several years ...”.(37) Kenneth Ch’en pointed out that Ricci did not base his maps upon one source “but most likely extracted and utilized information from all of them as well as from other geographical literature”.(38) He showed that, among others, Ricci primarily depended for his descriptions of Europe, Africa and the Americas on the maps of Mercator (1569), Ortelius (1570), and Plancius (c.1592). Equally if not more intriguing was the way “Panama” and the rest of the Philippine islands were drawn on the Ricci map. While the European influence on the typonymy is evident, Ricci’s map is not derived from any single – and Western – map. As Ricci wrote in his preface: “…with the aid of the original maps brought from my humble country, as well as of many Chinese topographical works, I prepared a new edition, correcting the errors in the old translation and the number of the degrees, and also adding the names of many hundred new kingdoms”.(37) Perhaps this eclectic approach explains the marked departure of the shapes of the Philippine island group from contemporaneous European sources. Among the maps that showed their creators’ familiarity—rather than lack of it—with Panay, or at least a port in it, was the Selden Map.(39) Bequeathed to the Bodleian Library in Oxford by the scholar John Selden in 1654, the map is the

used Panay in his India quae orientalis dicitur (1635), although his Asia Noviter delineat of the same year still used Panama. Nicolaes Visscher used Panay in his Asiae nova delinatio (1638) and also in his Indiae orientalis nec non insularum adiacentium nova descriptio (1657), where he added P. de Nassau and Otton as toponyms on the island.

Detail from the Selden Map showing Panay, with Oton (福 堂 or fu tang) named in the yellow circle (image © Bodleian Library, University of Oxford)

only known Chinese Ming-dynasty nautical chart.(40) Dating from c.1620, and centered on the South China Sea, the map covers an area from China to Java including most of the Philippine archipelago. Of particular importance, the map has thin black lines linking ports on the coast of Fujian with various ports in east and southeast Asia; these show the maritime trade routes of the period. The Selden Map shows 16 ports in the Philippines, named in Chinese characters, including Oton located on an island – presumed to be Panay – not far from Cebu. Oton or Ogtong (identified as 福 堂 or fu tang)(41), a settlement predating the occupation of Panay by the Spaniards, was the old name both of Iloilo province during the early Spanish colonial period and of its capital town, located near present-day Iloilo City. Its inclusion in the Selden Map indicates the port’s relative importance to the trade with China and the region. There is no consensus among scholars as to exactly when, where, by whom or for whom the map was made; Fujian, Manila and Java have all been named as possibilities, although recent analyses of the materials used in the map currently point to Aceh in Sumatra as the likely origin.(42) Panay redux From the mid-17th century onwards, European maps began to label Panay by its real name. Jan Jansson in his Indiae Orientalis Nova Descriptio (1630) featured “Panai otton”. Willem Blaeu

Nicolas Sanson d’Abbeville used Panay in his map of Asie (1650), and “Panay otton” in his map of Les Isles Philippines (1652). Other 17th century mapmakers to use Panay or Panai as the name for the island (and, in some cases, for a place on the island) include Joan Vinckeboons, Hessel Gerritsz, Pieter Goos, Joannes van Keulen, Frederick de Wit, John Seller, and John Thornton. In all these maps, however, although Panay’s location and size relative to nearby islands remained constant, its shape escaped certainty.

Detail of “Panay otton” from Les Isles Philippines by Nicolas Sanson d’Abbeville (1652) (from the collection of Alberto Montilla)

A larger-scale depiction of Panay is featured in Robert Dudley’s sea atlas Dell’ Arcano Del Mare,(43) published in Florence in 1646. In Carta particolare dell’Isole Fillipine è di Luzon … d’Asia Carta X (44) Panay is shown in some detail (albeit inaccurately) as an elongated triangle with a large bay on the south coast. The eastern side of this bay is possibly the island of Guimaras, indicating that the mapmaker was unaware of the Straits of Iloilo, although there is also a separate, unnamed island shown to the south. Capes and coasts around the island are named, as follows (proceeding clockwise from the northern tip): C. Panay, C. Grecale, Costa del Levante, C. Scirocco, Costa Piana, C. del Lago, Lago Grande, La Costa Ragaun, C. Panai Australe, C. della Baia, La Costa del ponte, C. del Ponente, and C. Maestale.


Of particular interest are the soundings shown off the east coast and along the south coast of Panay, with anchorages shown off C. Scirocco and in the middle of the southern bay. Dudley copied his charts from various sources, including maps in Italian collections and those made by contemporary British and Dutch explorers. Susan Maxwell makes a compelling case that the navigational information incorporated into Dudley’s charts of the Philippines came from the charts made by his brother-in-law, Thomas Cavendish, during the latter’s circumnavigation of the world in 1586-88.(45) Maxwell writes: … the soundings on Carta X along the east and south coasts of Panay [end] in an anchorage behind an island at the entrance to a large estuary where the Spanish shipyard of Raguan [aka Arevelo] is shown. [Francis] Pretty (46) relates a long description about this area where Cavendish captured a rather simple Spanish man who told him nothing relevant. Cavendish then made an unsuccessful attempt to destroy a galleon called the Santiago which was nearing completion, episodes noted in the Spanish records.

Mapping closer to home An important work emanating from the Philippines was the Labor evangélica … by the Jesuit missionary Fr. Francisco Colin.(47) The book, which includes a map of the islands, was published posthumously in Madrid in 1663. It was an official publication of the Society of Jesus dealing with the religious order’s history from their arrival in the Philippines in 1581 up to 1616, based mainly on previous work done by Fr. Pedro Chirino, S.J.(48)

Detail of Panay from the Carta particolare dell’Isole Fillipine è di Luzon … d’Asia Carta X by Robert Dudley (1646) ; note the coastal toponyms and soundings (image courtesy of Harvard University Map Collection)

Colin described Panay island’s triangular shape, and underlined its importance in the Philippines in terms of size, population and agricultural fertility. His narrative indicated that the island’s perimeter was a hundred leagues when navigated. Colin also provided details that were probably taken into account in the preparation of the map but could not all be incorporated. The main puntas (points) of the island were described; the coasts from Bulacabi to Potol ran from east to west; Potol to Naso ran from north to south; Bulacabi to a smaller point, Iloilo, also ran from north to south; and Iloilo to Naso ran from east to west. He wrote that, for ease of administration, the island was divided into two jurisdictions: Panay covering the entire northern coast from Punta Potol to Punta Bulacabi, and Oton covering the rest of the island.(49) The book’s accompanying map Planta delas Islas Filipinas (50) was engraved by Marcos de Orozco in Madrid in 1659. The map, oriented to the south and dedicated to King Felipe IV, was praised by Bach:

˂ Detail of Panay from Planta delas Islas Filipinas by Marcos de Orozco (1659) (from the collection of Rudolf J. H. Lietz) 12

Like a gleam in the dark is the unprecedented map by Colin … . Because of its individuality in appearance and completeness in names, it surpasses all those preceding it and many of those that followed. A vast amount of original information is recorded by its discriminating author, who, strangely enough, drew the line at borrowing from earlier maps. While the contours of the islands still leave much to be desired as far as accuracy is concerned, their general arrangement and proportional sizes reflect extraordinary advancement in the charting of the Philippines.(51)

The Colin-Orozco map shows Panay as a grossly triangular island with bulbous parts; Punta Naso marks its southern tip. Interestingly, the map also names the northern, eastern and western sides of the island as Panay, Oton and Antiq respectively. The names may have referred to the main settlements on each of the coasts, with Panay and Oton also serving as the names of the island’s two jurisdictional divisions. The map predates the separation of Antique province from Iloilo in the 1790s,(52) and “Antiq” when pronounced as spelled faithfully captures the indigenous name for the pueblo of Hamtic after which the province was named.(53) Colin wrote that the jurisdiction of Oton’s principal site was Iloilo, a point jutting out to sea to the south that forms a strait half a league wide and an open port with the adjacent island of “Ymaras”. On this point stood a square lime and stone fort with bronze and iron artilleries.

Commanding the fort was the Captain of Infantry based in Villa de Arevalo, founded by the Spaniards a league away from the fort. To the west of Arevalo, a short distance along the coast toward Tigbauan, was the town of Oton which was divided into two parts, each with a population representing 500 tribute-payers, all Bisayans but with different spoken languages – one part “Harayas”, the other “Harigueynes”. Colin described the famous Panay river, located on the northern coast of the island almost equidistant between Potol and Bulacabi. The river, which gave its name to the entire island, exited toward Lutaya Island where there was a good port utilized by Spanish ships before transferring to Manila and Cavite. The Panay river flowed through a major town with the same name, which at that time served as the seat for the island’s eponymous northern jurisdiction. David Buisseret states that: “Manuel (sic) (54) de Orozco, using sources that we do not know, produced a map at Madrid that showed virtually all the islands of the archipelago, with some internal detail.”(55) In any event, given the relative detail and accuracy shown in Panay’s case, and as mirrored in Colin’s detailed accompanying narrative, it is difficult to contradict the observation that, although made in Madrid, the Colin-Orozco map was “dressée sur des renseignements et des dessins envoyés des Philippines (drawn from information and drawings sent from the Philippines)”.(56)

The author acknowledges and thanks Miguel Lourenço, of the Portuguese Centre for Global History, for providing the weblinks in notes 6. and 8. below and for his valuable comments; Dr. Marco Caboara, of the Lee Shau Kee Library, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, for providing a digital copy of Pasquale M. d'Elia’s work on Matteo Ricci; and the editor Peter Geldart for incorporating information on the Martin Llewellyn atlas, the early miniature maps of the Philippines, and the charts of Robert Dudley. Notes & references 1.

See, for example, “Relation of the Voyage to the Philippines Islands, by Miguel López de Legaspi - 1565” and “Resume of Contemporaneous Documents, 1559-68”, in The Philippine Islands, 1493-1803, edited and annotated by Emma Helen Blair and James Alexander Robertson, The Arthur H. Clark Company, Cleveland, Ohio, 1903-09, Vol. II.


“Letter to Marqués de Falçes, Miguel Lopez de Legazpi, 7 July 1569” in Blair & Robertson op cit, Vol. III.


Carlos Quirino, Philippine Cartography 1320-1899, 2nd revised edition, N. Israel, Amsterdam, 1963, and Fourth Edition, edited by Dr. Carlos Madrid, Vibal Foundation, Quezon City, 2018.


Thomas Suárez, Early Mapping of Southeast Asia, Periplus Editions (HK) Ltd, Hong Kong, 1999. Suárez states that the two Ortelius maps “propose very different geographies for Southeast Asia” but “both were published without change in the Theatrum from 1570 to the last edition of the atlas in 1612.”



Luís Felipe F.R. Thomaz, “The Image of the Archipelago in Portuguese cartography of the 16th and early 17th centuries”, in Archipel, volume 49, Paris, 1995.


Huntington Library, San Marino, California:


Thomaz names the island Ilha povoada (“peopled island”) and infers that this is Luzon. Both he and Lourenço appear to agree that “Pouoada” is a bastardization of the Portuguese word povoada with the letter ‘v’ used interchangeably with the letter ‘u’.


Instituto dos Arquivos Nacionais / Torre do Tombo, Lisbon:


Miguel Rodrigues Lourenço, “Selected Passageways: The Philippine Islands’ Straits in 16th century Portuguese Cartography”, in Orientierungen, Zeitschrift zur Kultur Asiens, S. 28-63, Bonn, 2013.

10. Consuelo Varela (ed.), El viaje de don Ruy López de Villalobos a las islas del Poniente 1542–1548, Istituto Editoriale Cisalpino-La Goliardica, Milan, 1983. 11. A “panaie” island previously appeared in the atlas of Lazaro Luis in 1563, antedating Legazpi’s occupation of the bigger (and accurately identified) Panay island, per Miguel Rodrigues Lourenço, “De São Lázaro às Filipinas: imagens de um arquipélago na cartografia náutica ibérica do século XVI”, in Mapas de metade do mundo. A cartografia e a construção territorial dos espaços americanos: séculos XVI a XIX, Centro de Estudos Geográficos da Universidade de Lisboa, 2010. 12. Archivo General de Indias (AGI): 13. Lourenço “Selected Passageways” op cit confirms that only Pli recorded Panaon as Panay, and the mistaken reference did not appear on any of the Casa de la Contratación’s works of the 16th century. The charts attributed to Martinez Fortun and Esteban Rodriguez of the same area do not indicate Panay. 14. John Bach, “Philippine Maps from the Time of Magellan”, in The Military Engineer, Vol. XXII, No.124, Society of American Military Engineers, 1930. 15. National Library of Australia: In a personal note to the author, Lourenço advised caution in relying on the Mazza map for linking Panay with Pouoadas as the map represents a fusion of two earlier map models. 16. John Carter Brown Library Map Collection at Brown University: 17. Felipe E. Ruan, “Prudent Deferment: Cosmographer-Chronicler Juan López de Velasco and the Historiography of the Indies”, in The Americas, Vol. 74 (1), Cambridge, 2017; and “Cosmographic description, law, and fact-making: Juan López de Velasco’s American and Peninsular questionnaires” in Colonial Latin American Review, Vol. 28 (4), United Kingdom, 2019. 18. Biblioteca Nacional de España (BNE): 19. The only differences in the names of the Philippine islands are that the manuscript refers to the “Isla de buenas señales o San Juan” rather than to just “San Juan”, and to “Buyo” rather than the map’s “Abuyo”. 20. According to Ruan op cit, the Geografía y descripción was completed in c.1574, while the Sumario was written around six years later, in 1580. 21. Geografía y descripción universal de las Indias recopilada por el Cosmógrafo-Cronista Juan López de Velasco desde el año 1571 al de 1574, publicada por primera vez en el Boletín de la Sociedad Geográfica de Madrid con adiciones é ilustraciones por Don Justo Zaragoza, Establicimiento Tipográfico de Fortanet, Madrid, 1894. BNE: 22. Richard L. Kagan, Clio & the Crown: The Politics of History in Medieval and Early Modern Spain, The Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, 2009. 23. Mariano Cuesta Domingo, “Los Cronistas oficiales de Indias. De López de Velasco a Céspedes del Castillo” in Revista Complutense de Historia de América, Vol. 33, Madrid, 2007. 24. BNE:


Detail of “Panae” from a c.1650 manuscript map in the Baron Dartmouth collection (image courtesy of Yale University Library)

25. According to Cuesta Domingo op cit, editions were published in: Madrid, 1601-1615 (Spanish); Amsterdam, 1622 (Latin and French); Amsterdam, 1623 (Latin); Frankfurt, 1623 (German); Frankfurt, 1624 (Latin); Paris, 1660 and 1671 (French); Leiden, 1706 (Dutch); London, 1724 and 1725-26 (English); Madrid, 1726 (Spanish); Antwerp, 1728 (Spanish); and Madrid, 1729-30, 1934-57 and 1992 (Spanish). 26. The islands featured in the 1575 Velasco map are shown in a c.1650 manuscript map from the collection of Admiral George Legge, 1st Baron Dartmouth, held at Yale University Library. The map, which faithfully reflects the islands’ shapes with minimal changes in their names, does not reproduce the errors in the 1601 Herrera y Tordesillas map. The cartouche is written in Latin, but Spanish annotations on the outline of the southern part of Luzon confirm the map’s Spanish provenance. Panay is spelled “Panae” on the Dartmouth map, as it appears in Velasco’s Geografía y descripción … (op cit). On the northern coast of the island the Dartmouth map names Ybahay, Aclan (probably Kalibo), Maharluq (probably Baranggay Majanlud in Sapian Bay, Capiz), and the Rio de Panae, with the island of Lutaya offshore; the eastern coast shows the town of Saro (probably Jaro, named from the river Salog running through it); and the island of Burracay is shown to the northwest of Panay. However, the Dartmouth map omits the names of the islands of Matan and San Juan found on the Velasco map. See: 27. Quirino op cit. 28. Petrus Plancius, “Spice Map”, Insulae Moluccae celeberrimæ sunt ob Maximam aromatum copiam quam per totum terrarum orbem mittunt …, Cornelis Claesz, Amsterdam, c.1594. Plancius, the first official cartographer of the VOC (Vereenigde Oost-Indische Compagnie or Dutch United East India Company), was a navigational expert and consultant to the brothers Cornelis and Frederik de Houtman who obtained, in Lisbon, “classified sea charts made by the Portuguese cartographer Bartolomeu Lasso” (Suárez op cit). 29. Jan Huygen van Linschoten, Exacta & accurata delineatio cum orarum maritimarum tum etjam locorum terrestrium quae in Regionibus China, Cauchinchina, Camboja sive Champa, Syao, Malacca, Arracan & Pegu, from the account of his travels published as the Itinerario, Cornelis Claesz, Amsterdam, 1596. Van Linschoten was “one-time secretary to the Portuguese archbishop of Goa, a position which allowed him to spend his spare time profitably collecting navigational information relating to the sea route to the Indies” (Suárez op cit). 30. Christ Church Library and Archives, Shelfmark MS a.3 (West Table), University of Oxford: 31. Tony Campbell, “Martin Llewellyn's Atlas of the East: a mystery partly unravelled”, in Christ Church Library Newsletter, Volume 5, Issue 2, Oxford, 2009. 32. Geoffrey L. King, Miniature Antique Maps, 3rd edition: 33. Lourenço “De São Lázaro às Filipinas” op cit. 34. Lourenço op cit, citing Ricardo Cerezo Martínez, La Cartografía Náutica Española en los Siglos XIV, XV y XVI, Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas, Madrid, 1994. 35. Kun yu wan guo quan tu or 坤 輿 萬 國 全 圖 meaning “Great universal geographic map”; the text is written in Chinese characters throughout. Library of Congress:


Detail of Panay, oriented to the east, from Nieuwe Afteekening van de Philippynse Eylenden by Johannes II van Keulen (1753) (from the collection of Peter Geldart)

36. Fonti Ricciane: documenti originale concernenti Matteo Ricci e la storia delle prime relazione tra l’Europa e la Cina (1579-1615), editi e commentate da Pasquale M. d’Elia, La Libreria dello Stato, S.I. Roma, 1942-49. 37. Lionel Giles, “Translations from the Chinese World Map of Father Ricci”, in The Geographical Journal, Vol. 52, No. 6, The Royal Geographical Society, London, 1918. 38. Kenneth Ch’en, “A Possible Source for Ricci’s Notices on Regions near China”, in T’oung Pao, Second Series, Vol. 34, Livr. 3, E.J. Brill, Leiden, 1938. 39. Bodleian Library, Oxford: 40. Hongping Annie Nie, The Selden Map of China – A New Understanding of the Ming Dynasty, Bodleian Library, Oxford, 2019; reviewed in The Murillo Bulletin Issue No. 9, PHIMCOS, Manila, Feb. 2020. 41. The Chinese characters 福 堂 are pronounced as fu tang in Mandarin but as hok tong in the local

Hokkien language of the southern province of Fujian in China.

42. Sotiria Kogou et al., “The origins of the Selden map of China: scientific analysis of the painting materials and techniques using a holistic approach”, in Heritage Science, Vol. 4, no. 28, SpringerOpen, 2016. 43. Sir Robert Dudley, the son of Lord Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester, exiled himself to Italy in 1605, settled in Florence, and entered the service of the de’Medici Grand Dukes of Tuscany. The Arcano was the first printed English atlas of nautical charts covering all parts of the known world, the first in which all the charts were constructed using Mercator's new projection, the first to give magnetic declination, the first to give prevailing winds and currents, and the first to expound the advantages of “great circle sailing” or the shortest track between two points on a globe. 44. Harvard Map Collection, Harvard University: 45. Susan Maxwell, “The Philippines – A Link between Thomas Cavendish (1560-1592) and Sir Robert Dudley (1574-1649)”, in IMCoS Journal No. 155, International Map Collectors’ Society, United Kingdom, 2018. 46. Francis Pretty’s narrative of Cavendish’s circumnavigation in Richard Hakluyt, The Principall Navigations, Voiages and Discoveries of the English Nation, second edition, London 1598–1600. 47. Francisco Colin, Labor evangélica, ministerios apostólicos de los obreros de la Compañia de Jesus, fundacion, y progressos de su provincia en las Islas Filipinas, Joseph Fernandez de Buendia, Madrid, 1663. 48. Colin states that his book is “Sacada de los manuscriptos del padre Pedro Chirino, el primero de la Compañía que passó de los Reynos de España a estas Islas”. See Pedro Chirino, S.J., Relación de las Islas Filipinas y de lo que en ellas han trabajado los padres de la Compañia de Jesus, Roma Año MDCIV, 2.a Edición, Imprente de D. Esteban Balbás, Manila, 1890. See also René B. Javellana, S.J., “Historiography of the Philippine Province” in Jesuit Historiography Online, Brill, 2016. 49. In his 1582 Relación de las Yslas Filipinas (Blair & Robertson op cit, Vol. V), Miguel de Loarca described the entire island of Panay, and all the districts under its jurisdiction covering nearby islands, as being governed from Villa de Arevalo by one alcalde mayor (provincial governor). Agustin de la Cavada y Mendez de Vigo in his Historia geográfica geológica y estadiśtica de Filipinas (Imprenta de Ramirez y Giraudier, Manila, 1876) dates the establishment of the province of Oton (Iloilo) to 1581, which also was the year when Arevalo was founded by Governor Gonçalo Ronquillo Peñaloza.


By 1698, Gaspar de San Agustín in his book Conquistas de las Islas Philipinas (Imprenta de Manuel Ruiz de Murga, Madrid, 1698) formally referred to Colin’s separate administrative jurisdictions on Panay as two distinct provinces – Ogtong in the south and Panay in the north ― each headed by its own alcalde mayor. 50. Planta de las Islas Filipinas dedicada al Rey N. Señor D. Felipe Quarto en su Real Consso. de Indias Año 1659; Bibliothèque nationale de France: 51. Bach op cit. He also observed that “the numerous names, many of which have the modern pronunciation, show marked familiarity with the coastal region, and make this map a fascinating subject for contemplation by the student of Philippine orthography”. 52. Joselito N. Fornier, in “Economic Developments in Antique Province: 1800-1850” (Philippine Studies , Vol. 46, No. 4, Ateneo de Manila University, Quezon City, 1998) writes: “By the late eighteenth century … enough people had been brought together into pueblos to justify formation of the Antique political unit on a linguistic and physical basis [in] 1796. Roberto Blanco Andrés in “Los sucesos de Antique de 1888” (Archivo Agustiniano, Vol. 99, No. 217, 2015) mentions a royal decree of 1796 establishing Antique province. 53. According to Fr. Juan Fernández, O.S.A. in Monografias de los pueblos de la Isla de Pan-ay (written between 1898 and the author’s death in 1918; published with an English translation by the University of San Agustin Publishing House, Iloilo City, 2006), Antique is the Hispanized name; in Bisaya, the local language, the name is Hamtic, which signifies a big ant with a painful bite. 54. Quirino mistakenly called the map engraver “Manuel Orozco”; the error has subsequently been repeated in a number of publications, including two PHIMCOS exhibition catalogues and Quirino’s Fourth Edition. 55. David Buisseret, “Spanish Colonial Cartography, 1450-1700”, in The History of Cartography , Volume Three, Part 1, edited by David Woodward, The University of Chicago Press, Chicago & London, 2007. 56. Gabriel Marcel, La Carte des Philippines du Père Murillo Velarde, Imprimerie Nationale, Paris, 1898.


The Mapping and Charting of Panay in the 18th & 19th centuries by Raphael P.M. Lotilla


STRIKING Spanish chart of the Philippine archipelago, published in Madrid in 1727, is titled Carta Chorographica del Archipielago de las Islas Philipinas, delineada por el Almirante Don Francisco Diaz Romero, y Sargento Mayor D. Antonio de Ghandia, Diputados de la Ciudad, y Comercio de Manila : en cuyo nombre la dedican a la Cat. M. del Señor Don Phelipe V el Animoso.(1) Centered on the Philippines, the map covers an area from the coast of Vietnam to the Mariana Islands.(2) Many places in the archipelago are identified, albeit without very much topographical detail, and “the coasts, shown in elevation, are boldly and confidently drawn, with some errors of outline”.(3) The mapmakers were members of the local commercial guild in Manila who had travelled to Madrid to lobby the Consejo Real in favour of the silk trade with the Philippines. Although the names in the title are given as Francisco Diaz Romero and Antonio de Ghandia, Carlos Madrid has pointed out that: “[as the name] Ghandia is virtually unknown as a family name in Spain … we can safely consider that [it] can be regarded as a misspelling [for] Echeandia or Ochandia”.(4) The Isla de Panai as rendered in the RomeroEcheandia map appears less triangular than in earlier maps; toponyms shown on the island are Punta de Nazo, Potol, Va. de Capis, Ro de Oton, and Po. de hilohilo. The map as a whole was considered defective by Fernando de Valdés y Tamón when he arrived in the Philippines as Governor-General two years later. In his judgment, the map needed rectifying, particularly in reflecting distances and in its failure to include unspecified demarcaziones substanziales (substantial demarcations). The map’s shortcomings may have been serious enough to explain why no copy has been found in Spanish archives; the only surviving example is in the British Library.(5) But this map, precisely because of its observed deficiencies, did produce one significant result: it paved the way for, hastened and justified state sponsorship of the great Murillo Velarde map of 1734.

Murillo Velarde’s toponyms Unlike many of the maps of the Philippines that preceded it, the Carta Hydrographica y Chorographica delas Yslas Filipinas Dedicada al Rey Nuestro Señor Por el Mariscal de Campo D. Fernando Valdes Tamon Cavallº del Orden de Santiago de Govor. y Capn. General de dichas Yslas,(6) produced by the Jesuit Fr. Pedro Murillo Velarde in 1734, was published under the express direction of the Spanish Crown. The royal order from King Felipe V directing Governor-General Valdés Tamón to prepare a map of the Philippines was contained in a letter dated 1 June 1732.(7) The King’s imprimatur is shown on the chart by the royal coat of arms in the title cartouche and the line at the bottom of the cartouche: “En Manila Año de 1734. De orden de su Mag[esta]d.” After consultations with knowledgeable persons in the colony and studies of previous maps, especially the Romero-Echeandia “Map of 1728” which in his view deserved correction, Valdés Tamón commissioned Fr. Murillo to work on the assignment.(8) Murillo may have prepared, or was preparing, a map before he received the commission from the Governor-General. Even if that were the case, it does not detract from the fact that the 1734 chart enjoyed full state backing, and its content embodied legal positions taken by the state. Consequently, this chart deserves some examination with respect to the island of Panay.

Detail of the Isla de Panai from Carta Chorographica del Archipielago de las Islas Philipinas (1727) (image ©The British Library Board, Maps 184.f.3.)


Table 1 : Panay Toponyms in the 1734 Murillo Velarde Chart Murillo Velarde

Selga - Province & (updated status)

Current status

Aclan Ajui Alimudia Anilao Antique Arevalo Asluman Banate Banga Barota Batan Bonga (a) Bongol Bugasong Capis Damilisan Dulan Dumalag Dumarao Dumangas Guimbal Iloilo Iaro (b) Laglag Mambusao Manapao Mayon Miagao (a) Molo Nalupa Oton Panay Pasig Punta de Bulacaui Punta de Naso Punta de Potol Sapian Tibagua Tiolas Ybajay Yguisan

Capiz (probably Kalibo) Iloilo (presently Ajuy) Iloilo (presently Alimodian) Iloilo Antique Iloilo Antique (probably Mapatag) Iloilo Capiz Iloilo (presently Barotac Viejo) (“not encountered”) not mentioned Iloilo Antique; misspelled as Bugason Capiz (presently Capiz) Iloilo (probably Miag-ao) Iloilo (probably Pili); misspelled as Dolan Capiz not mentioned Iloilo Iloilo Iloilo Iloilo Iloilo Capiz Capiz (probably Pontevedra) not mentioned not mentioned (“not encountered”) Antique Iloilo Capiz not mentioned (presently Bulacaue) Naso (probably Nasog) Capiz Iloilo (presently Tigbauan) Iloilo; misspelled as Ticlal Capiz (presently Ibajay) not mentioned (c)

Kalibo, Aklan Ajuy, Iloilo Alimodian, Iloilo Anilao, Iloilo Hamtic, Antique Arevalo, Iloilo City Asluman, Hamtic, Antique (near Mapatag) Banate, Iloilo Banga, Aklan Barotac Viejo, Iloilo Batan, Aklan cannot be located Bongol, Guimbal, Iloilo Bugasong, Antique Roxas City, Capiz Damilisan, Miag-ao, Iloilo Dulang river (to Pedada Bay), Ajuy, Iloilo Dumalag, Capiz Dumarao, Capiz Dumangas, Iloilo Guimbal, Iloilo Iloilo City Jaro, Iloilo City Dueñas, Iloilo Mambusao, Capiz Manapao, Pontevedra, Capiz Maayon, Capiz Miagao, Iloilo Molo, Iloilo City Jinalinan, Barbaza, Antique Oton, Iloilo Panay, Capiz Passi City, Iloilo Bulacaue Point Naso Point Potol Point Sapian, Capiz Tigbauan, Iloilo Tiolas, San Joaquin, Iloilo Ibajay, Aklan Ivisan, Capiz

Notes: (a) (b) (c) (d)

Bonga and Miagao are present in the BnF copy but erased / absent from other copies. In old Spanish, the letters I and J were interchangeable. Yguisan is not mentioned by Selga under the 1734 map; listed under the 1744 map, misspelled as Iuisan. Lalutaya, a small island near Capis, is not among the toponyms found on Panay itself; it is Yguisan that has a marker on the chart for its location immediately north of Capis. (e) This table of toponyms excludes the rivers Potol, Macato and Malandog.


Detail of Panay from Carta Hydrographica y Chorographica delas Yslas Filipinas by Pedro Murillo Velarde (1734) (image courtesy of the Library of Congress Geography and Map Division)

Panay has a triangular shape that is more accurate than that in the Romero-Echeandia map,(9) although some details of its contours are glossed over. The 1734 chart features the three puntas in Panay cited by Fr. Francisco Colin in his Labor evangélica … of 1663: Pta de Potol in the northwest, Pta de Bulacaui in the northeast, and Pta de Naso in the south. The northwestern peninsula with Potol Point is not well defined, but there is the suggestion of a bay at the peninsula’s base. A deeper indentation between Banga and Batan on the northern coast, and a sheltered channel between Iloilo and Guimaras, indicate safe harbors. The four-cornered symbol for a fort appears near Arevalo and Iloilo. Several rivers are drawn but only three bear names: the Macato and Potol rivers in the northwest, and the Malandog river in the west. Stylized mountains, without names are shown, particularly in the island’s interior.

The settlements on the island named in the chart number either 36 or, on some states of the map (as explained below), 38. In Table 1, the three puntas and the settlements are listed in in the first column. The chart does not indicate the boundaries between the provinces in Panay, but their corresponding provinces are listed in the second column, as taken from Fr. Miguel Selga’s study of the Murillo maps.(10) Selga also indicated, in his numerous footnotes, the actual or probable names in the contemporary period of the places featured in the chart whenever the names changed or differed from, or could not be found in, the maps produced by the United States Coast and Geodetic Survey.(11) These are given in parentheses in the second column of Table 1. The third column lists the present-day names of the places indicated in the Selga study.


Probably because Selga was working from a poor, less readable copy of the 1734 Murillo chart, he missed the following names: Dumarao (Capiz); Mayon (Maayon, Capiz); Pasig (Passi, Iloilo); and Yguisan (Ivisan, Capiz). Tiolas in San Joaquin, Iloilo is misspelled as Ticlal, which sounds more Mexican than Filipino. The name of Miagao, a town in southern Iloilo, appears in faint letters before Damilisan which is now the oldest barangay of Miagao town. Selga also included Macato, Capiz although the map mentions the river “R. Macato” and not the pueblo. Some places are marked as not having been encountered by Selga in the official 1933 map of the Philippines. Before his study was made, the U.S. colonial administration had reorganized the different towns and a number of them were merged; for example, Molo, a separate pueblo, became a district of Iloilo City. Worth noting is that six of the named settlements are unmistakably located in the island’s interior: Mambusao, Mayon, Dumalag, Dumarao, Laglag and Alimudia. This is more than the number of interior settlements named in the other large islands nearby (including Negros, Samar, Leyte and Mindoro), and may be taken as an indication of the extent of effective colonial control claimed over the interior parts of the island. Some places in southern Panay named in the Murillo map had interesting links with the Society of Jesus. The town of Tigbauan (misspelled in the map as Tibagua) figured prominently in the 1604 account of Fr. Pedro Chirino.(12) Upon the invitation of Rodríguez de Figueroa, the Spanish encomendero,(13) the Jesuits established a mission with a school for Visayans and a boarding school for Spaniards in his encomienda in the town. Among the tributes he had authority to collect for himself were fine cotton weaves called lompotes which were in high demand in Mexico. Horacio de la Costa (14) noted that it was probably Figueroa who made 150,000 pesos in just a few years when he shipped the lompotes to Acapulco via the galleons. Several decades later in the same area of Panay, the Jesuits were involved in a dispute with the Augustinians involving competing jurisdiction over the mundos or remontados, “people who had fled in considerable numbers from the


settled areas of that island to the jungle fastnesses of the interior in order to avoid the burdens of taxation and other demands made upon them by the authorities”.(14) The mundos expressed willingness to “return to their allegiance if they were allowed to form towns of their own under the direction of the Jesuits”,(14) and arrangements were made for around 3,000 mundos “to come down from their hiding places to Suaraga, the former site of [Figueroa’s] cattle ranch … and Bongol, where the Jesuits had … acquired another cattle ranch”.(14) But the Augustinians, “who had charge of most of the towns of the island, had represented that the mundos originally belonged to their communities, which was quite true, and therefore should be made to return to them”,(14) objected. The Bishop of Cebu issued a decree in 1670 “declaring that the Jesuits had no permission whatever to administer the sacraments to the mundos”.(14) The dispute dragged on for more than two decades and reached all the way to Rome, only to be “finally settled extrajudicially in 1696 by the Augustinians and the Jesuits coming to an amicable agreement regarding all the differences that had arisen between them”.(14) Although Selga called the settlements named on the map pueblos, not all of them formally became towns or parishes in or after the Spanish colonial period; in southern Panay these include Bongol, Damilisan, Tiolas and Asluman. Besides Bongol, mentioned above, Damilisan in Miagao was another of the estancias (estates) or rancherias (ranches) where the Jesuits ministered to the mundos.(15) Tiolas is only five kilometers away from today’s Siuaragan river in San Joaquin, Iloilo. Probably the Jesuit links with these places explain why they were featured in Panay by Murillo even if they were not pueblos. On the other hand Asluman, one of the earliest encomiendas awarded in Panay, and Suaraga were visitas of the Augustinian convent of Antique.(16) The “missing” names We do not know how many copies of the Murillo chart of 1734 were printed, but only a small number have survived – around a dozen in national libraries around the world, and at least five in private collections in the Philippines and overseas. High resolution images can be viewed

Comparison of toponyms on Panay between earlier and later states of the 1734 Murillo Velarde map (images courtesy of Bibliotèque nationale de France (left) and the Library of Congress (right))

on the websites of the Bibliotèque nationale de France (BnF) in Paris and the Library of Congress (LOC) in Washington, D.C., and copies can also be found in the Biblioteca Nacional de España in Madrid and the British Library in London.(17) In examining different copies of the map, this writer has identified notable differences in the toponyms shown on Panay between the BnF copy and other available copies, particularly the LOC copy. First, the BnF copy shows Miagao preceding Damilisan on the same line in southern Panay; the LOC copy indicates an attempt to erase Miagao, although it remains faintly legible. Second, a place near Damilisan shown as Tiolos in the BnF copy has been changed to Tiolas in the LOC copy. Third, the BnF copy shows Bonga, between Banate and Barota on the northeastern coast; the LOC copy erases Bonga, with only a faint outline remaining.

An examination of nearby Negros island also reveals discrepancies: on the south-west coast, Balio appears in the BnF copy but is completely absent from the LOC copy; and to the south of Balio, Cavita is shown, diagonally, in the BnF copy, but in the LOC copy Cavita has disappeared, the coastline has been changed, and Cavitan is inserted, vertically, nearby. All these changes indicate that the erasures were made deliberately, and are not due to the ordinary wear and tear of the copper plates. These changes may be understood when taken in the context of the explanation Valdés Tamón sent in a letter to José Patiño (18) of the iterative process for producing the map, as follows: under Murillo Velarde’s direction, all the maps that had previously been made of the islands were reviewed; for those parts that were unclear or doubtful, either experts were sent to survey the terrain or officials in the far provinces 23

Detail of Panay from Plan de la Suite ˃ de Larchipel des Isles Philipines (from the collection of Rudolf J. H. Lietz)

were asked to clarify any details; on the basis of the review and validation, the map was drawn and copper plates were engraved; some copies of the chart were then printed and sent to experts for correction; and that finally “no se hallo yerro a lo menos considerable

(no significant error was found)”. But the latter statement does not rule out that there were in fact some errors, considered minor, that were rectified by erasing the mistake(s) with a burnisher and, if necessary, re-engraving the relevant portion of the plate, and/or by adding an intercalation. Subject to future validation by studies covering the other islands in the 1734 Murillo map, it is highly probable that the BnF copy, characterized by the strongest printing impression among all the major extant copies examined, is a pre-final proof copy that came from the set of initial prints of the chart sent out for review and correction. Accordingly, the BnF copy does not incorporate the changes that were made to the plates to reflect the final round of corrections, as shown on the LOC copy. The reason for the erasure of Miagao becomes clearer when examined in the context of a map in the collection of Rudolf J.H. Lietz.(19) Dated c.1740, the map is said to have been based on the Murillo map, but there are indications that it – or at least its source – may in fact have antedated the latter. First, Miag-ao has an incorrect location marker in the Lietz manuscript, on the western coast between Asluman and Antique. The error was copied in the early BnF copy of the Murillo map but without a location marker, hence the error was not conspicuous since Miagao was written adjacent to Damilisan, which happened to be the oldest barrio of Miagao. The error was probably detected belatedly and corrected by erasing the name.


An alternative way of making the correction would have been to insert Miagao between Tiolas and Damilisan, but the southeastern coast is relatively crowded with names. Erasing Damilisan and replacing it with Miagao would have been more difficult to do on the finished plate, and Tiolas itself had already been intercalated in what vaguely appears as an erasure even in the BnF copy. Second, all but three of the geographical names on the Murillo map appear on the Lietz map, the exceptions added to the former being Laglag and Alimudia in the central interior, and Yguisan on the northern coast near Capis. Bonga is also on the manuscript map, and although the reason for its erasure by Murillo is not as evident as that of Miagao, it was probably pointed out as an error which had to be corrected. Similarly, Salay, which appears in the Lietz map at a point where a river branches into two in the mid-eastern coast between Iloilo and Jaro, was absent from the outset in the Murillo map although the two rivers forming an island between Iloilo and Iaro were retained.(20) Passig was moved inland in the Murillo map from its erroneous location next to Jaro on the eastern coast in the Lietz map. Murillo placed the name of Lalutaya near an island on the northern coast

near Capis, its actual location, and not between Banga and Batan as it appears on the manuscript. All these together indicate that the Lietz map may have copied a sketch or map earlier than the Murillo chart, and formed one of its sources. In 1744 a smaller edition of Murillo’s chart was published by the Society of Jesus. This quartersized map (without the side panels of the 1734 original) has a different title cartouche, and does not claim to have been published by the state or the Spanish Crown. It carries no symbols of its royal antecedence, and no longer bears the descriptions or details of a hydrographic chart. Because of the 1744 map’s reduced size, the number of places named in Panay has been reduced to 15, with in some cases changes to the toponyms’ spelling: Ybajay, Aclan, Yguisan, Panay and Capis; Ajui, Dolan, Dumangas, Jaro, Arevalo, Oton and Yloylo; and Nalupa, Bugason and Antique.

Bonga, which appears on only the BnF copy of the Murillo map, and on the Salaverria maps discussed below, is also shown on an unpublished chart by Alexander Dalrymple. Dalrymple, who was to become hydrographer to the East India Company (EIC) and the first Hydrographer to the British Admiralty, was a prolific cartographer who produced over 1,350 charts, plans and sheets of views, of which some 95 were of the Philippines. Between 1759 and 1764 he made three voyages to the Philippines, and on the first of these, in the schooner Cuddalore, he sailed past and surveyed a number of islands in the Visayas, including Panay. The chart Track of the Schooner Cuddalore, along the East Coast of Panäy; by A. Dalrymple, 1761, shows a detailed line of soundings through the strait between Ylo Ylo and Guimaras, along the east coast of Panay, and northwards to Sibuyan. Bonga is shown between Doolang and Quasee Bay. Although the chart has Dalrymple’s imprint and is dated 6 January, 1775, it was never published. Copies of this chart, and of other unpublished charts which Dalrymple prepared for his nevercompleted Chart of the Philipinas project, are held in the United Kingdom Hydrographic Office in Taunton (21) and the Library of Congress. The Malacañang Museum collection has a manuscript map of Panay, dated 1789, with the lengthy title Plano de la Ysla de Panay enmendado por Don Santiago de Salaverria con todos sus Puertos, Sondas, Baxos y Enzenadas. Puestas Tambien los Baluartes que guarnecen las costas de la Provincia de Yloilo para defensa contra los Moros. It appears to be a revised or amended copy of an earlier map, and does not follow the comparatively more accurate representation of the island on the earlier Murillo map. As its title indicates, the map shows the fortifications established for the protection of the Iloilo coast but, strangely, fails to mark Yloilo.

Track of the Schooner Cuddalore, along the East Coast of Panäy; by A. Dalrymple, 1761 (image courtesy of the U.K. Hydrographic Office)

The Archivo del Museo Naval (AMN) in Madrid has another, colored copy of Salaverria’s map, dated January 23, 1797 and drawn by Domingo Juan delos Santos, with the title Plano de la Isla de Panay, Construyda y enmendada por Dn Santiago Salaverria Theniente Coronel Graduado del Batallon de Milicias de Lalaguna


˂ Plano de la Ysla de Panay enmendado por Don Santiago de Salaverria (1789) (image courtesy of Edgar Ryan S. Faustino, CESO III, Director IV, Presidential Museum and Library, Office of the President, Malacañang)

de Bay, y Corregidor dela Prova. de Tondo.(22) Aesthetically striking, it does not add much to the information contained in the earlier version although there are some differences, notably the inclusion of Yloylo and Molo. The toponyms in the two Salaverria maps are listed in Table 2. Malaspina and his successors In 1788 King Carlos III and the Spanish government approved the plans for a voyage of exploration to the Spanish territories in South America, the Pacific and the Philippines led by Alessandro Malaspina, an Italian who had joined the Spanish navy in 1774. One of the aims of the Malaspina Expedition was to produce accurate charts of the colonial coastlines for use by the Spanish navy and merchant marine, and two cartographers, Felipe Bauzá y Cañas and José de Espinosa y Tello, were on board the expedition’s two purpose-built corvettes, the Descubierta and the Atrevida.


The expedition left Spain in 1789 and visited the Philippines from March, 1792 to January, 1793; the scientific and sustained survey of most parts of Panay’s coast was carried out in November, 1792. In his journal,(23) Malaspina describes navigating from the Ilin Islands at the southern end of Mindoro to the west of Panay. Dalrymple had also mapped these waters, and Malaspina apparently had a copy of one of Dalrymple’s charts, either published (24) or unpublished,(25) although, as noted in his journal, Malaspina did not rely on it: [A]s we did not know what information he [Dalrymple] had based his chart upon and were aware that this geographer, in his eagerness to contribute to navigational knowledge, had on several occasions published highly equivocal and dangerous charts made by former or unknown mariners, this very fact made us proceed with caution during the following night.(26)

After passing near the Semirara islands between Mindoro and Panay the vessels navigated southwards, following the entire length of the western coast of Panay. Malaspina wrote:(23) Only with difficulty can words be found to describe even approximately the great amenity of these parts, which become more densely populated and intensely cultivated as one approaches Antique, the principal town. This [area] may be justifiably called the granary of the Visayas. Its anchorage, although offering no shelter during the season of the vendavales [i.e. the southwest monsoon], is comfortable for two-thirds of the year and will allow for the export of the many valuable products, as well as the rice, which these happy shores can produce. Consequently, we took every care to survey this area with the greatest possible accuracy, which in time may attract to itself a greater volume of shipping and, admiring at every step the polished style of Captain Meares (27) in his description of this stretch of the coast, we approached, entranced, the extremities of Panay, which at sunset were five to six leagues distant, bearing S 7 degrees East.

On their way south to Negros, Malaspina and his crew took “some important bearings of Naso Point” at the southern extremity of Panay. In determining the exact positions of points in Panay and Negros, Malaspina was “spurred by the desire to add more reliable information to the important work of Don Juan Maqueda”.

Maqueda, the expedition’s Primer Piloto (Master), and Jeronimo Delgado, the Segundo Piloto (Second Master), were instructed to stay behind and devote six months to a detailed survey of the Visayan Islands aboard the schooner Santa Ana. This survey was viewed as crucial for navigation in the archipelago and for charting the routes to the Pacific Ocean. The Santa Ana survey produced several charts of parts of Panay. Among the extant ones is Maqueda’s 1793 manuscript Carta Esferica que comprehende desde la parte N. de la ysla Panay hasta Cabeza de Bondo en la de Luzón, con las demas islas adjacentes ê intermedias, drawn by José Felipe de Ynciarte in Cadiz in 1806.(28) The map shows the northern part of Panay from Punta Potol in the west to Punta Bulacabi in the east, and then south to Ajuy, Iloilo. A unique feature of the chart is a record of an inland reconnaissance of the Panay river from Visita Tapas in the interior to its mouth on the island’s northern coast.(29) Another noticeable feature is the use of light lines in drawing the northwestern peninsula’s coast from Punta Potol, in contrast to the shaded bold lines used in other parts. A note on the northwestern part of Panay island explains the discrepancy as the partial absence of a survey: that while the location of Punta Potol was determined accurately, the coast running southeast to the Barra de Aclan was done through visual observation, and the coast running south to the Tibiao river was detailed from a plan acquired from the local inhabitants.

Detail from Carta Esferica que comprehende desde la parte N. de la ysla Panay by Juan Maqueda (1793) (image courtesy of Archivo Museo Naval de Madrid)


After his return to Spain, Malaspina became involved in political intrigue, leading to his arrest, trial and exile. Bauzá’s charts from the expedition were eventually published by the Dirreción Hidrográfica in 1808, but without mention of his or Malaspina’s name. The surveys made by the Santa Ana were incorporated into the Carta General del Archipiélago De Filipinas Levantada en 1792 y 93 por los Comandantes y oficiales de las Corbetas de S.M. Descubierta y Atrevida.(32) On this chart, the islands and coasts that were surveyed by the expedition are drawn in shaded bold lines, with those not covered by the expedition (although obtained from other reliable sources)(33) traced in lighter lines. As stated above, the latter include the portions of Panay’s northeastern coast that were not surveyed by Maqueda.

Carta Esferica del gran canal formado entre las Yslas Panay, Negro, y Guimaras … by Juan Maqueda (1793) (image courtesy of Archivo Museo Naval de Madrid)

The southern part of Panay is covered in another of Maqueda’s charts, also drawn by José Felipe de Ynciarte in Cadiz in 1806, titled

Carta Esferica del gran canal formado entre las Yslas Panay, Negro, y Guimaras en el Archipielago Filipino.(30) The map shows the channel between

The 1808 Malaspina chart formed the basis for the Carta Esferica y Plano Topografico de las Yslas Filipinas, a manuscript topographic map by Don Yldefonso de Aragon dated Manila, April 15, 1820.(34) The de Aragon map was the earliest to illustrate, in color, the general boundaries of the different provinces of the Philippines.(35) The map shows the route of Malaspina’s ships along the western coast of Panay and retains some of the idiosyncratic features of its predecessor chart. For instance, the town of Antique on the west coast appears north of the provincial capital San Jose instead of south, and there are two places named Batan, on the eastern and northern coasts of the province of Capis.

the islands of Panay, Negros and Guimaras (today called the Gulf of Panay and the Iloilo and Guimaras Straits), and the southern part of Panay from north of the mouth of the Sibalon river on the western coast down to Point Nassog in the south, then east-northeast to Ylo-ilo and its port, and on to Ajuy on the northeast coast. A third chart by the same mapmakers, but dated 1805, is the Plano del de Batan Situado en la parte N. de Ysla Panay en Filiphinas,(31) which shows the port of Batan on the northern coast, eastwards from the Barra de Aclan. The sites of Pueblo Calivo and Calibo Viejo, Pueblo de Banga and Banga Vieja, and Batan Nuevo are indicated, reflecting the relocations of the population centers that were not an entirely uncommon occurrence in that period.


Detail of Panay from Carta General del Archipiélago De Filipinas by Felipe Bauzá, Dirección Hidrográfica (1808) (from the collection of Mariano Cacho, Jr.)

Detail of Panay from Carta Esferica y Plano ˃ Topografico de las Yslas Filipinas by Yldefonso de Aragon (1820) (image courtesy of Archivo Museo Naval de Madrid) The Malaspina chart shows points, ports, rivers, and topographical features which were important for navigation,(36) but not all of these were copied in the de Aragon map. In the interior of Panay, de

Aragon added some towns but committed errors in their placement. The town of Laglag in Iloilo is placed north of Calinog and Lambunao instead of to the south; the town of Sta. Barbara is placed above and not below Janiuay; and the town of Panay in Capis province is misplaced between Batan and Sapian. A slightly revised version of the Malaspina / de Aragon map was produced in 1832 by the German geographer H.K.W. Berghaus, with the title Reduzirte Karte von den Philippinen und den Sulu Inseln.(37) The extended title acknowledges that the map was based on the work of Don Alexandro Malaspina and Don Espinosa y Tello, updated by that of Don Ildefonso de Aragon. The Panay portion eliminates the interior towns in Iloilo added by de Aragon, and the provincial boundaries are modified to reflect more fully the extent of the area covered by Capis province. The interior towns of Mambusao, Dumarao and Dumalag in Capis are also added, but these are erroneously located near to the central cordillera instead of the mountains in the northeastern part of the island.

In 1845 the Augustinians published an atlas showing the “souls” under their administration in the Philippines (38). The maps in the atlas, by Fr. Emmanuele Blanco, O.S.A., include one of the whole island, Mapa de la Ysla de Panay,(39) and individual maps of the three provinces: Mapa de la Prov.a de Antique,(40) Mapa de la Prov.a de Capis (41) and Mapa de la Prov.a de Yloylo. (42) All four maps are dated 1834, and were engraved by Alexander Sanches. The pueblos and parishes under the spiritual administration of the Augustinian friars are identified by a flaming heart, a symbol associated with St. Augustine’s order. The island-wide map captures in visual form the long-held image of three cordilleras separating the provinces from each other and forming a pyramid at the island’s center. Panay’s shape essentially follows that of the 1808 Malaspina Carta General. The initial surveys made by the Malaspina expedition were gradually improved and resurveyed by the Spanish navy. Gaps were filled in, as exemplified in a chart of the northern part of Panay made in 1830 which completed the survey of the entire northern coast of the island.(43) Other nearby parts of Panay also received some attention,(44) and Iloilo as an important trading port had its charts updated more often, as shown in charts made in 1830 (45) and 1843.(46)

˂ Mapa de la Ysla de Panay from the atlas by Fr. Emmanuele Blanco, O.S.A. (1834) (image courtesy of Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin) 29

Detail of Panay from Islas Filipinas. Segunda Hoja Central by Antonio Morata and Francisco Coello (1852) (image from the Barry Lawrence Ruderman Map Collection courtesy of Stanford University Libraries)

A large topographic map of the Islas Filipinas was produced by Francisco Coello de Portugal y Quesada in 1849-52. This pioneering work, issued in three separate sheets,(47) was motivated by the need to reinforce Spain’s colonial authority against challenges from competing European powers, and to assert Spanish control over “acts of piracy” in Mindanao and Sulu.(48) The map formed part of the Atlas de España y sus posesiones de Ultramar, with maps by Coello and historical information written by Pascual Madoz. The project was to cover the provinces of peninsular Spain and all of its overseas territories, but remained uncompleted after Coello’s death in 1898. 30

Although the Atlas was a private initiative, it received state support by various means.(49) In preparation for its Islas Filipinas map, the Spanish government provided Coello with the maps made by Antonio Morata, who had served in the Armada Real (Spanish navy) and had been assigned to the Philippines as a piloto de cargo de la Real Comision Hidrográfica. Morata’s Mapa General de Filipinas was on five large sheets; started in 1841 and concluded in 1851, the map was based on the surveys of the hydrographic commission principally between 1833 and 1848, as well as on other surveys done by the Spanish military, government engineers, and other offices in the Philippine colonial administration.(50)

The Coello-Morata map of the Philippines has not escaped criticism for having been rushed, at the price of producing a map less accurate than could have been made. The general paucity of available information on certain islands and interior parts of the Philippines was an inherent limitation on Morata’s work, a shortcoming which “Coello covered with more skill than rigor, undoubtedly constrained by circumstances”.(48) This is illustrated by a stark contrast between the density of details appearing on the central part of Luzon and adjacent to Manila Bay and the vacuum appearing in the interior of Mindoro and the cleverly-camouflaged bare areas in parts of Mindanao. On the whole, however, the Coello-Morata map was recognized as a notable improvement over preceding ones. Panay appears on the second sheet, and its three provinces are mentioned in the description of the administrative and ecclesiastical subdivisions of the Philippines on the third sheet. With respect to Panay, the map represented an initial effort to map the boundaries of the provinces, albeit in a limited way.(51) These appear as segments colored in outline along the coasts, distinguishing between Capiz, Antique and Iloilo, but the internal provincial boundaries are not indicated although visually they could be assumed to follow roughly the three cordilleras that separate the provinces from each other. A total of 67 pueblos or towns in Panay are marked on the Coello-Morata map. This compares favorably with the 64 pueblos listed in Manuel Buzeta’s contemporaneous Diccionario Geografico, Estadistico, Historico.(52) In addition, numerous other minor settlements are named, especially near the coastline. However, there are apparent errors in reflecting the location of a few of these. For instance, the town of Libacao is shown near the shoreline of the northern coast, but its actual location is in the interior. Mount Baloy is prominently shown not too far from the west coast of Antique, although its actual location is farther inland. The drawings of mountains are all over the place. There are more toponyms in the Coello-Morata map than in previous ones, but they do not indicate meticulousness in stating the names of the settlements accurately – not only when compared with the Isla de Panay – Bosquejo Geológico by Enrique Abella y Casariego, to be

published in 1890, but also compared with the earlier maps discussed above. Many of the place names found in an 1824 manuscript Carta de la Ysla de Luzon, by Pablo Ruiz de Labastida,(53) appear to have been included. These toponyms, confined to the western coast of Panay, were fewer in number than those in the CoelloMorata map, but the names of the main settlements are more accurate in the former. The Coello-Morata map shows the roads or caminos between the capital town of Iloilo to Pasi in the north and Miagao in the south; from the capital town of Capiz to the various towns to its west and south (which appear discontinuous in certain places); and from Antique town north to Patnogon. Several rivers are marked and named. Surprisingly, only a few anchorages are marked even though depth soundings in a number of coastal areas are indicated. Perhaps, had there been more time, more information would have been incorporated into the Panay map. Worth noting is that the interior of the island of Samar, which was barer than Panay’s in the 1734 Murillo map, is much denser with toponyms in the Coello-Morata map than is the interior of Panay. In the top-left corner of the map’s second sheet there is an inset map of the Puerto de Batan in what is now Aklan province, then part of Capiz, drawn on a scale of 1 : 250,000. The inset is not as detailed as the 1793 Maqueda manuscript chart of Batan in terms of the toponyms shown, nor does it extend beyond Banga port, but it does show the soundings which reflect its origins in hydrographic charts.

Inset map of the Puerto de Batan from Coello’s Islas Filipinas. Segunda Hoja Central (image courtesy of the Barry Lawrence Ruderman Map Collection)


Table 2 : Toponyms in Panay on selected maps from 1789 to 1890 Salaverria 1789 / 1797

De Aragon 1820

Coello-Morata 1850*

Abella 1890*

*confined to pueblos for comparative purposes CAPIZ PROVINCE Buluangan Hibajay Aclan (a) Macato (a)

Calibo (b)

Banga (a)

Banga (b) Banga Vieja (b)

Batan (a) Mambusao (a)

Batan (Puerto Batan (b))

Iguisan (Yguisan (a))



/ Dumarao

Maan / Mayon (a) Panay (a) Sapian (a) Capis (a) Manapao (a)

Calivo Macato Malinao Banga Madalag Libacao (coastal) Balete Batan Mambusao Jamindan Tagnaya Loctugan Ivisan Sigma Dao Dumalag Dumarao Tapas Panitan


Panay (incorrect location) Mandon Sapian (b) Capis

Panay Sapian Capis

Buruanga Navas Ibajay Tangalan Calivo Macato Numancia Lezo Malinao Banga Madalag Libacao (inland) Balete Jimeno Batan Mambusao Jamindan Jagnaya Loctugan Ivisan Sigma Dao Cuartero Dumalag Dumalag & Dumarao(c) Tapas Panitan Maayon Panay Mandong (d) (near Batan) Sapian Capiz Manapao, Pontevedra Pilar


Ajui / Ajuy (a) Bato Tigbao


Batan (b)


Batad (d) Carles S. Dionisio Sara Lemery Concepcion Ajui Bato, Ajui Arroyo Tigbao, near Pili

ILOILO PROVINCE Pasig (a) / Masig


Calignog Lambunao (1789 only) MIssi / Misi Laglag Dingle Barotac (a) Banate (a) Barotac Chica

Calinog Lambunao

Calinog Lambunao


Laglag Dingle Barotag Viejo Banate Barotag Nuevo

Pototan Mina (e) Talurucan / Talarucan Janiguay (1789 only) Danao Mahasin Cabatuan Anilao (a) Dumangas (a) Janipan Dalaguis / Talaguis Sta. Varbara / Barbara


Barotac Banate

Talucuran Janiuay Danao Maasin Anilao Duminangas

Pototan Janiuay Maasin Cabatuan Anilao Dumangas Janipaan

Sta. Barbara

Sta. Barbara

S.n Miguel Alamudin Camando Mandurriao Jaro (Iaro (a))

Alimudian Camando Manduriao Jaro

S. Miguel Alimodian Camando Mandurriao Jaro

Yloylo (a) (1797 only) Molo (a) (1797 only)

Yloylo (Ilo-ilo (b)) Molo

Oton (a) Tibaguan (a)

Ooton (Oton (b)) absent (Tigbauan (b))

Gimbal (a)

Guimbal (Guimba (b))

Ygbaras / Ybaras Miagao (a) Tiolas Suaragan Bonga (a) Apiton Estancia de Ganados Maycarutan (?) / Maycauayan

Miagao (b) Sn. Juaqn.

Iloilo Molo Arevalo Otong Tigbauang Guimbal Tubungan Igbaras Miagao S. Joaquin

Passi Sn. Enrique Calinog Lambunao Misi, Lambunao Dueñas Dingle Barotac Viejo Banate Barotac Nuevo Lucena Pototan Mina Talarucan, Janiuay (d) Janiuay Danao, Janiuay (d) (f) Maasin Cabatuan Anilao Dumangas Zarraga (g) E. Talauguis Sta. Barbara Leganes Pavia S. Miguel Alimodian Leon Mandurriao Jaro La Paz Iloilo Molo Arevalo Oton Tigbauan Cordoba Guimbal Tubungan Igbaras Miagao S. Joaquin Tiolas Siuaragan Monte Apiton Estancia S.n Fernando o Agcauayan


ANTIQUE PROVINCE Dao Antique (a) Malandog (river (a))


Aniguid Daao Antique

Sibalo Mina (h) Panonongon

Sn. Jose (b) Sn. Pedro Sibalon Mina (h) Pagnongon

S. Jose de Buenavista S. Pedro Sibalon

Bugason (a)

Bugaso (Bugason (b))


Nalupa (a) Tibiao Qulasi / Culasi

Nalupa (b) Colasi (Caluji (b))

Napula Tibiao Colasi

Pandan (b) (i)


Patnogon Caritan

Anini-y Dao Antique Malandog Egaña Sn. Jose de Buenavista Sn. Pedro Sibalom S. Remigio (h) Patnongon Caritan Valderrama Bugason Guisijan Nalupa Nuevo Barbaza Tibiao Colasi Sebaste Pandan

Notes: (a) The name appears on the 1734 Murillo Velarde chart (Miagao and Bonga in the BnF copy only). (b) The name appears on the 1808 Malaspina / Bauzá Carta General del Archipiélago De Filipinas. (c) Dumalag and Dumarao are separate but adjacent towns in Capiz. (d) Not a pueblo in 1890. (e) There are two places named Mina in Iloilo; the second is near Tigbao, between Bato and Ajuy. (f) Juan Fernández (54) states that the Danao in Pototan, Iloilo, was founded in 1766, four years after Janiuay. (g) According to Fr. Fernández,(54) Zarraga used to be called Canipaan, a visita of Jaro. (h) Mina in Antique Province was probably San Remigio, then a part of Sibalom.(55) (i) Pandan is placed under Capiz on the de Aragon map.

Table 2, set out in the preceding pages, shows the progression in the number of important settlements captured in either one or both of Salaverria’s maps, and in the maps of de Aragon, Coello-Morata and Abella, together with the variations in spelling used by the different mapmakers. Toponyms shown in the two Salaverria maps are listed in the first column, with those from the de Aragon, Coello-Morata and Abella maps in the second, third and fourth columns. Toponyms that also appear in the 1734 Murillo Velarde map and/or the 1808 Malaspina / Bauzá Carta General del Archipiélago De Filipinas are marked, as shown in the notes.


Charting the archipelago Later mapmakers owe much to the coastal survey efforts of the Spanish navy, and the surveying and charting of the Philippine archipelago, including Panay, accelerated when a hydrographic commission was established in Manila in the early 1830s. The commission was initially under the direction of José María Halcón; when, in 1836, Halcón was recalled to Madrid he was succeeded in 1840 by Guillermo de Aubarede y Pérez. By the time Aubarede returned to Spain in 1849 he had finalized a number of charts of the coasts of Luzon, the Visayas, the Cagayan River and the San Bernardino Strait.(56)

Detail from Archipiélago Filipino – Hoja IX – Estrechos de Iloilo, Guimaras y Tañon, Dirección de Hidrografía (1867) (image courtesy of Biblioteca Nacional de España)

In 1854 the Dirección de Hidrografía in Madrid established a third cartographic commission specifically for the Philippines, the Comisión Hidrográfica de Filipinas, under the leadership of Alférez de navío (lieutenant) Claudio Montero y Gay, an experienced marine cartographer.(57) From 1856 to 1864, the Comisión Hidrográfica surveyed the entire archipelago, and the detailed charts resulting from these surveys were published in Madrid by the Dirección de Hidrografía. Panay’s northwestern peninsula, including the island of Borocay (sic), was among those coasts that were rendered with increasing precision, as shown in the charts of Islas Cuyos y Semerara con parte de las de Mindoro, Panay y Tablas (1856) (58) and Carta Esférica de las Islas de Sibuyan y Masbate con el Estrecho de San Bernardino (1861) (59). Montero consolidated his work in a series of 16 charts with the titles Archipiélago Filipino – Hoja I to Hoja XVI.(60) Three sheets include parts of Panay. Hoja IX, Estrechos de Iloilo, Guimaras y

Tañon,(61) which covers a major part of Panay, shows several mountains in the central cordillera with their heights in meters. Hoja VIII, Comprende la parte oriental del Estrecho de San Bernardino y las islas de Masbate, Sibuyan, Tablas, y otras,(62) covers Panay’s northern coast. Hoja VII, Islas Cuyos y Semerara con parte de las de Mindoro, Panay y Tablas,(63) focuses on Panay’s western coast. The 19th century saw great improvements in maritime hydrography, with national charting agencies encouraged to produce better, more functional, finely-engraved and frequently updated charts not only of the familiar, commercial sea routes but also of more remote coasts and islands. The Philippine archipelago was surveyed in detail not only by the Spanish navy and the Comisión Hidrográfica, but also by the British and French navies and their cartographic agencies, all of whom collaborated in the interests of improving maritime safety for seafarers.


A notice at the bottom of the chart explains that it has been drawn to make known the route along the west coast of Panay and the east coast of Mindoro, so as to avoid the Apo Shoal to the west of Mindoro which is parsemée de dangers peu connus et éloignés de terre (strewn with little known dangers far from land). The coasts surveyed by the French ship are indicated by deeper engraving, with the other parts empruntées des cartes Espagnoles (borrowed from the Spanish charts).

Carte des côtes occidentales de Panay, Tablas et iles voisine, Dépôt des Cartes et Plans de la Marine (1857) (image courtesy of Archivo Cartográfico de Estudios Geográficos del Centro Geográfico del Ejército)

For example, in 1841, after the First Opium War, Sir Edward Belcher, R.N. in HMS Samarang was engaged in surveying work in Japan, the Philippines and Borneo until 1846; a chart in the account he published of his voyage shows his tracks through the Visayas.(64) Subsequently the Admiralty published two charts that show Panay,(65) and their extended titles state that they are “Principally from Spanish Charts, Corrected from partial Surveys by Sir Edward Belcher, R.N. C.B.”. In 1855, the Admiralty published a chart of Ports in the Filipinas which included “Port Iloilo From a Spanish Survey, 1843”; this was updated in 1872 with a revised chart of “Port Ilo Ilo From a Spanish Survey 1864”.(66) This inter-country exchange and cooperation was also evidenced by the production of French charts of the Philippines. The passage between western Panay and the Cuyo group is shown in Carte des côtes occidentales de Panay, Tablas et iles voisines …,(67) published by the Dépôt des Cartes et Plans de la Marine in Paris in 1857. The chart shows the island of “Bororacay”.


The surveys of the Comisión Hidrográfica were also incorporated in a revised and corrected edition of the Malaspina / Bauzá Carta General del Archipiélago Filipino, published in 1862.(68) A new edition of the Carta General, which no longer mentions the Mapaspina expedition and specifies that it was “levantada principalmente por la Comisión Hidrográfica al mando del Capitán de navio D. Claudio Montero y Gay”, was produced in 1870 and reissued, with additions, in 1875.(69) Among other changes, the outline of Panay’s north-south cordillera is more definite in the latter chart. As well as the commission’s surveys, there were complementary efforts made by other government offices to produce maps for their own use, ranging from a very general 1865 manuscript map of the Division Politico-Militar de Las Islas Visayas (70) to a detailed c.1880 map entitled Isla de Panay: Distritos de Ilo-Ilo, Capiz y Antique.(71) The latter contains contour lines of the entire island, with detailed toponyms of Antique province on the west coast, but appears to be an unfinished draft as marks of the main settlements remain unnamed, particularly in the provinces of Iloilo and Capiz. My initial examination of the image shows that the map contains toponyms not covered by the Abella map, which also did not have contour lines. In 1876, Agustín de la Cavada y Méndez de Vigo wrote a two-volume Historia geográfica, geológica y estadística de Filipinas which contains five maps.(72) Two of these are of the provinces of Panay, one focusing on Ylo-ilo (sic) and Antique (but showing the whole island), and the other focusing on Capiz. The respective sources of the two maps were different, and a notable difference between them is the shape of Panay’s northern coast, especially the northwestern peninsula.

Isla de Panay: Distritos de Ilo-Ilo, Capiz y Antique, Depósito de la Guerra, c. 1880 (image courtesy of Archivo Cartográfico de Estudios Geográficos del Centro Geográfico del Ejército)

For the shape of this peninsula and the entire island, the first map follows the more recent hydrographic charts, whereas the Capiz map follows the rendering of the peninsula and the rest of the northern coast shown in the 1850 Coello-Morata map. The island-wide map marks 33 pueblos in Iloilo and 18 in Antique; that of Capiz marks 27 pueblos (all on Panay Island). On the other hand, in his book Cavada lists 19 pueblos in Antique, 32 in Capiz and 41 in Iloilo (of which four are in Concepcion and two on the island of Guimaras). In 1869 Montero, having been promoted to Capitán de navío (captain), returned to Spain. The following year the Comisión Hidrográfica de Filipinas was reorganized, but continued its work despite shortages of personnel, ships and instruments. Although it did not accomplish as

much surveying work as it had achieved during its heyday under Montero, the commission’s additional surveys completed its detailed hydrographic representation of the Philippines. However, no major changes in the nautical charts of Panay are apparent, even in the revised and corrected edition of the 1875 Carta General published in 1894. The apogee of the mapping of Panay in the 19th century would be the publication, in 1890, of Abella’s Isla de Panay – Bosquejo Geológico, which I discuss in a separate article. Although the geological mapping was all the work of Abella’s team of surveyors, he also made full use of the surveys and charts produced by the Comision Hidrográfica, a fact prominently acknowledged by Abella in the credits appearing on his great map of Panay.

The author acknowledges and thanks Rudolf Lietz and the Gallery of Prints for making available enhanced images of his c.1740 manuscript map and a number of different examples of the 1734 Murillo Velarde chart; and the editor Peter Geldart for providing information on Alexander Dalrymple’s unpublished charts of Panay and on British Admiralty charts. Unless otherwise stated, quotations from publications in Spanish have been translated by the author or the editor. Notes & references 1.

Ricardo Padrón, “Las Indias olvidadas – Filipinas y América en la cartografía imperial Española” in Terra Brasilis (Nova Série), Vol. 4, Rede Brasileira de História da Geografia e Geografia Histórica, 2015; image:


Alfredo Roca, “The Philippine Islands Through the Eyes of Francisco Diaz Romero and Antonio Ghandia”, in The Murillo Bulletin, Vol. 3, PHIMCOS, Manila, 2016.


R. A. Skelton, “Philippine Cartography in the British Museum” in Quirino op cit.



Carlos Quirino, Philippine Cartography 1320-1899, 2nd revised edition, N. Israel, Amsterdam, 1963, and Fourth Edition, edited by Dr. Carlos Madrid, Vibal Foundation, Quezon City, 2018.


The British Library acquired the map, in six sheets, from the collection of Admiral Lord Howe. The Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. holds a 19th century photographic copy of the map, mounted on canvas.


See Note 17. below for weblinks to images of the chart.


The letter was received in 1733. No copy of the order has survived or been quoted, but several communications between Valdés Tamón and the court acknowledged that the order was given.


The Governor-General’s instructions to Murillo Velarde were disclosed to the court in letters from Valdés Tamón to José Patiño, Secretary of State and of the Indies to King Felipe V; these are now held in the Archivo General de Indias (AGI) in Sevilla.


For a comparative analysis of the Romero-Echeandia and Murillo Velarde maps, see Ricardo Padrón, “Abstraction to Allegory: The Imperial Cartography of Vincente de Memije”, in Early American Cartographies edited by Martin Brückner, The University of North Carolina Press, 2011.

10. Miguel Selga, S.J., “Los mapas de Filipinas por el P. Pedro Murillo Velarde, S.J.”, in Publications of the Manila Observatory, Vol. II, Issue 4, Bureau of Printing, Manila, 1934. 11. Selga op cit explained that he studied the names of pueblos and islands appearing on the 1734 Murillo Velarde map (and on the quarter-size edition of the map published in 1744) by comparing them with the modern names as they appeared in the Derrotero del Archipiélago Filipino by Camilo de Araña (Direccion de Hidrografía, Madrid, 1879), or in the contemporary pilot and maps of the Philippines published by the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey in Manila. Any discrepancies that required explanation were footnoted. 12. Pedro Chirino, S.J., Relación de las Islas Filipinas y de lo que en ellas han trabajado los padres de la Compañia de Jesus, Roma Año MDCIV, 2.a Edición, Imprente de D. Esteban Balbás, Manila, 1890. Chirino arrived in Panay in 1593 and left in 1595 for Leyte and Samar. 13. An encomendero was the holder of an encomienda, a right granted by the King to deserving Spaniards and other individuals in the Indies that allowed them to collect for themselves the tributes (taxes) owed to the Crown by the indigenous people. Figueroa’s encomienda in Tigbauan (“field of reeds”) was 14 miles south of the town of Arevalo. He also had a ranch further south in Suaraga with 14,000 cattle, for which there was a ready market in the Mollucas garrisons that were provisioned from Arevalo. According to de la Costa op cit, the ranch was among the properties Figueroa bequeathed to the Jesuits as an endowment, later given to the Colegio de San José in Manila. 14. Horacio de la Costa, S.J., The Jesuits in the Philippines, 1581-1768, Harvard University Press, 1961. 15. R. Morales Maza, The Augustinians in Panay, The University of San Agustin, Iloilo City, 1987, citing Isacio Rodríguez Rodríguez, Historia de la Provincia Agustiniana del Santísimo Nombre de Jesús de Filipinas, Vol. II, Manila, 1965. 16. Gaspar de San Agustín, O.S.A., Conquistas de las Islas Philipinas, Imprenta de Manuel Ruiz de Murga, Madrid, 1698. Visitas were villages without a priest that depended on the visits of a neighboring priest for religious ministration. At that time, Bugason and Cuyo were also visitas of Antique (Hamtic). 17. Bibliothèque nationale de France (BnF): Library of Congress (LOC): British Library (BL): / Biblioteca Nacional de España (BNE): 18. The letter, dated July 7, 1734, accompanied the transmittal of 12 copies of the Murillo Velarde chart to the Spanish Court; AGI: 19. The map, a manuscript in two sheets with partial loss titled Plan de la Suite de Larchipel des Isles Philipines, is reproduced in Insulae Indiae Orientalis, the catalogue compiled and edited by Rudolf J.H. Lietz for the exhibition he curated for the 36th IMCoS Symposium held at the Ayala Museum on 14-17 October, 2018; published by RLI Gallery Systems, Inc., Makati City, 2018.


Isla de Panay Provincias de Ylo-ilo y Antique and Isla de Panay Provincia de Capiz by Agustín de la Cavada y Méndez de Vigo, 1876 (from the Aurora A. Lotilla collection; photographs by Marti Bartolome) 20. The placename nearest to Salay is the river Salog, which gave Jaro its original name. The two rivers creating an island was to reappear in the Yldefonso de Aragon map of 1820. 21. United Kingdom Hydrographic Office (UKHO) ref. no. v51 Bb3 and y25 Bb4. 22. AMN: A third version of Salaverria’s map, also in manuscript and dated Dec. 21, 1797, is in the British Library. 23. Andrew David, Felipe Fernandez-Armesto, Carlos Novi & Glyndwr Williams (editors), The Malaspina Expedition 1789-1794: The Journal of the Voyage by Alejandro Malaspina, Volume III, The Hakluyt Society, London in association with the Museo Naval, Madrid 2001-04. 24. Chart of Faveau’s Voyage Reduced from the Original MS, dated August 1st 1781; the chart copies a Spanish chart, titled: Carta Plana Particular de El Viage que hizo La Armada despachada el Ano 1753 por El M.Y.S. Marques de Ovando Governador y Capitan General de las Yslas Philipinas al Cargo de D. Antonio Faveau Quesada para el Establecimiento de un Presidio en la Punta mas al Sur de la Ysla de La Paragua …, which shows the western coast of Panay. 25. Chart of the Cuyos, and Part of Panay, dated 14 April, 1775; UKHO ref. no. v52 Bb3 and y24 Bb4. 26. The editors of Malaspina’s journal op cit note that sometimes Dalrymple published charts “of dubious authority, sometimes several charts of the same area by different people, in the hope that mariners would comment on their shortcomings.” 27. Captain John Meares, an English navigator, explorer and maritime fur-trader, sailed through the Visayas on his way from Macao to Zamboanga en route to Nootka Sound in early 1788, as recorded in his book Voyages Made in the Years 1788 and 1789, from China to the North West Coast of America, London, 1790. 28. AMN: 29. The location of Visita Tapas shown on the map, where the Panay River survey starts, is inaccurate; it should have been further to the west, as the river flows eastwards of the cordillera until it turns northwards. 30. AMN: 31. AMN:


32. Barry Lawrence Ruderman Antique Maps, Inc.: . In 1812 a reduced-format English edition of the chart was published in London by Aaron Arrowsmith, with the title Chart of the Philippine Islands, from the Spanish Chart 1808. The Adjacent Islands are added from the latest Surveys. Revised editions of Arrowsmith’s chart would be published up until 1862. 33. The last line in the chart’s cartouche reads: Las Cóstas sombreadas son las que hemos reconocido, y las que nó, ván sin sombrear; aunque para delinearlas se han tenido presentes las Cartas y notícias mas fidedignas. 34. Archivo Cartográfico de Estudios Geográficos del Centro Geográfico del Ejército (ACEGCGE): Another copy of the same map, sectioned and with different colors, is in the AMN, ref. AMN 80-1 / AMN 80-2. 35. Christian Perez, “The Mapping of Philippine Provinces”, in The Murillo Bulletin, Vol. 4, PHIMCOS, Manila, 2017. 36. In Panay these include: Punta Potol, Barra de Aclan, Puerto de Batan, Rio Huisan, Rio Igbisan, Punta Nipa, Isla Olutaya, Rio Majabago, Rio Cabiallan, Rio Atimona, Pta Balison, Punta Bulacabi, Pico Arangel, Sierra Ajuy o Lapiton, Islas Binuanan, Islas Calabazas, Punta Pagulaya, Punta Marquil, Punta Anilao, Punta Talisay, Punta Catadman, Punta Talisaya, Punta Valentin, Punta Naso, Punta de Acdan, Punta Mapata, Punta Dalipe, Rio Sibalon, Sierra de Ginabotan, Rio Tibiao, Rio Lipata, Rio Mumbaru, and Rio Badio. 37. Engraved by Selmar Siebert, the map was one of 15 in Berghaus’s Atlas von Asia published by Justus Perthes, Gotha; ACEGCGE: 38. Mapa general de las almas que administran los PP. Agustinos Calzados en estas Islas Filipinas, Imprenta de D. Miguel Sánchez, Manila, 1845. 39. Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin: 40. Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin: 41. Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin: 42. Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin: 43. José de Atienza & Federico de Vargas, Plano esferico de las Costas Sur y Oeste de la Isla de Masbate y Norte de la de Panay, 1830, BNE: 44. José de Atienza, Plano que comprende la Costa de Panay e Islas y Silangas adyacentes Desde Punta Bulucaue hasta Los Bajos de las Pepitas, 1830, BNE: 45. José de Atienza, Plano del Rio de Yloylo. 1830, BNE: 46. Dirección de Hidrografía, Plano del Puerto de Iloilo / Plano del Puerto de Iloilo y su fondeadero, (1843) 1849, BNE: 47. The two sheets titled Islas Filipinas. Primera Hoja Central (1849) and Islas Filipinas. Segunda Hoja Central (1850) cover the archipelago’s central parts; the third sheet, Posesiones De Oceania. Islas Filipinas (1852), covers the archipelago’s northern and southern extremities, with descriptive information on the islands. The maps are undated but the dates of publication are given on the back covers of the folded editions, although the third sheet was delayed from 1850 to 1852; see Quirino op cit. 48. Francisco Quirós Linares, “Las Posesiones de Ultramar (1849-1853) en el Atlas de Francisco Coello. Fuentes y colaboradores”, in Ería, No. 78-79, Universidad de Oviedo, 2009. 49. The first sheet of the map has a note acknowledging the Spanish government’s acts of facilitation, and the Advertencia on the third sheet acknowledges that Morata’s works were facilitados por el gobierno de S.M. 50. Quirino op cit also credits Morata with an 1835 map of Maricaban near the San Bernardino Strait, an 1845 map of northern Luzon, a plan of the port of Loog, and a plan of the port of Cavite. 51. The boundary between Capiz and Iloilo represented the status prior to the creation of the comandancia of Concepcion that consolidated the northeastern extremities of Capiz and Iloilo. 52. Manuel Buzeta & Felipe Bravo, Diccionario Geográfico, Estadístico, Histórico De Las Islas Filipinas, Imprenta de D. José C. de la Peña, Madrid, 1850-51. The authors list 11 pueblos for Antique, 29 pueblos for Capiz (of which 24 are on Panay Island), and 29 pueblos for Iloilo (of which 28 are on Panay Island). 40

53. Carta de la Ysla de Luzon y Adyacentes comprehendidas entre los 10° y 19°30' de latitud Septentrional y los 125°.50' y 130°.40' de longitud Oriental de Cadiz segun las mas recientes observaciones reconocimientos y noticias fidedignas / Arreglada Por el Teniente Coronel de Yngnieros Dn. Pablo Ruiz de Labastida; ACEGCGE: . 54. Juan Fernández, O.S.A., Monografias de los Pueblos de la Isla de Pan-ay, University of San Agustin Publishing House, Iloilo City, 2006. 55. The name Mina (mine) is indicative of a period of mining activity much earlier than the account, documented by Abella, that the existence of a rich, extremely extensive copper mine at Mount Carauisan, a league away from the pueblo of Sibalom, Antique (of which San Remigio was then a part) was first reported by the provincial government in 1842. 56. Peter Geldart, “Charts from the Spanish Dirección de Hidrografía”, in Mapping the Philippine Seas, Section VIII, PHIMCOS, Manila, 2017. 57. Carlos Madrid, “Mapping the Islands with Comisión Hidrográfica de Filipinas”, in Quirino op cit, Fourth Edition, Chapter 13. 58. BNE: 59. BNE: 60. Camilo de Arana, Derrotero del Archipiélago Filipino, Dirección de Hidrografía, Madrid, 1879, includes an index map to the 16 charts. 61. BNE: 62. BNE: 63. BNE: 64. Chart Shewing the Tracks of H.M.S. Samarang during the Year’s 1843,4,5 & 6. Capt. Sir E. Belcher, C.B., from Narrative of the Voyage of H.M.S. Samarang during the Years 1843-46, Employed Surveying the Islands of the Eastern Archipelago, Reeve, Benham, and Reeve, London, 1848. 65. China Sea. Philippine Islands – St. Bernardino Strait and Parts Adjacent (chart no. 2577), and China Sea. Philippine Islands – Eastern Part of the Sulu or Mindoro Sea (chart no. 2578), London, 4th December, 1857. 66. Admiralty chart no. 2391 also included plans of Port Batan, Port Zebú, and Port Buluagan ó Sta Ana. 67. “… Levée sous voiles en fevrier 1846 Par ordre de Mr. Le Contre Amiral Cecille Commandant la division navale des mers de L'Inde et de la Chine par M.M.J. de la Roche-Poncié, Ingénieur Hydrographe, X. Estignard et J. Delbalat, Sous-Ingénieurs à bord de la Corvette la Sabine Commandée par Mr. N. Guérin, Capne. de Vaisseau.” ACEGCGE: 68. Real Instituto y Observatorio de la Armada: 69. BNE: 70. ACEGCGE: 71. The map is marked “Copia del existente en el archivo del Depósito de la Guerra”. ACEGCGE: 72. Agustín de la Cavada y Méndez de Vigo, Historia geográfica, geológica y estadística de Filipinas con datos geográficos, geológicos y estadísticos de las islas de Luzón, Visayas, Mindanao y Joló, Imprenta de Ramirez y Giraudier, Manila, 1876. The maps, in Volume 2, are after pages 96 (Capiz) and 108 (Ylo-ilo and Antique). HathiTrust:


Fine & R are Antique Maps, Sea Charts, Town Views & Atlases

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Felix Laureano and his Remembrances of Panay in the 19th century by Dr. Felice Noelle Rodriguez


ONTOURS of coastlines, lands and seas, meandering rivers and streams, mountains and hills – these are what are shown to us by maps. These lines are made flesh by photographs, and more so with descriptions of places and peoples. Such locales are given life in the published photo album Recuerdos de Filipinas, by the Filipino artist Felix Laureano (1866-1952). With his photographs, Laureano gives us a deeper, 3-D view of the maps, and he provides movement and sound to the scenes with his accompanying essays. Published by A López Robert in Barcelona in 1895, just a year before the start of the Philippine revolution, the album was indeed, as advertised in the frontispiece, Util para el studio y conocimiento de los usos y costumbres de aquellas islas con treinta y siete fototipias tomadas y copiadas del natural (a tool for the study and understanding of the ways and customs of these islands with 37 collotypes taken and copied from real life).

Artistic photographs As I say in my Introduction to the translated edition of the book published in 2001, when I first saw and read Recuerdos de Filipinas “it was as if windows had swung open, revealing scenes of a century ago.” I felt it of utmost importance to republish his work with an English translation for a wider audience. Laureano was an artist and used his photographs as a medium for art. In his book he had an advertisement for his photo studio in Barcelona, and he also had a studio in Ilo-ilo, on Calle Iznart.

Title page of Recuerdos de Filipinas, 1895

But what I wish to show in this paper is the richness of his accompanying essays. These contextualize the local scenery with descriptions giving movement, color, texture, and local lore, which show his depth of knowledge of language and culture. If his essays continue to engage us it is because they reveal his romantic, if meandering, sensibilities about a place and life at that time, wanting to hoard the age’s memories. Looking at the images and reading his texts, the reader learns from Laureano’s detailed knowledge of local ways and preoccupations, articulating expressions, material culture, plants and animals in the local languages, Hiligaynon and Tagalog. Featured prominently are snippets of local culture: weddings and burials, market fairs, bathing in the sea, reed stalls selling food, and women gathered at the river. It is most apt to focus on Laureano’s work in this special issue of The Murillo Bulletin on the cartography of Panay because Patnongon, Antique was his birthplace.(1)

˂ Felix Laureano (left) with his brother Vicente, his brother-in-law Juan Marcelo, and his sisters Jesusa and María 43

˂ Vista del Rio Bugasoug (sic) – Antique

In the photo album Laureano introduces us to Panay’s geography, culture and people; 14 of the 37 photographs pertain specifically to Panay. The Bugasong and Jalaud rivers, the slopes of Mounts Ulián and Tagbacán, the Cathedral in Jaro, the Plaza and docks in Ilo-ilo, and other places in Panay featured in maps can be better appreciated from his photographs. The photographs are reproduced in the original book as collotypes (fototipias in Spanish).(2) In this article I shall replicate a few segments from Laureano’s work to show how his essays bring these photographs to life. Undulating rivers In Laureano’s rendering, lines in maps indicating rivers and streams are made rich with color and texture. He explores different aspects of rivers: as beauty spots, as connections, as community venues, for industry, and for other uses. The Bugasong river is described as being surrounded by lush vegetation with “bamboo foliage intertwined with leaves of the fat mangales (mangroves) and the palms of the ni-óg or lubi (coconut), as well as the leaves of the mabolo (velvet persimmon), santol (cotton fruit) and catmon (elephant apple).” The Jalaud river, depicted as “the most picturesque, undulant river in all of Panay Island”, abounds with salmon and sili (freshwater eels). From mountains and peaks it is “serpentine, undulant, its waters lap lush crops, abundantly irrigating the towns of Passi, Lambunao, Cabatuan, Janiuay, Pototan, Dingle … and Dumangas”.


In the “interesting town” of Dingle he takes us to an enchanted cave with “walls formed by rock crystals, beautiful alabaster and marble.” This cave in local lore is said to be home to Labao Dung-gon, “the most high god, all powerful, magnanimous, a god of gifts and graces”. It is said the god took in and cared for two lovers whose parents were not in favor of their love; so those who yearn for true love offer before his altar chicken, doves, rice, bananas and pork. Young maidens sigh and exclaim, “Abao, Labao Dung-gon taga-i co bana! (Oh Labao Dung-gon, give me a husband!)”. Laureano also explores the role of rivers as connecting nodes between towns. The residents of the neighboring towns of Ma-asin, Janiuay, Cabatuan, Santa Barbara and Pavia sail down the swift current of the Tigon river on their bamboo rafts. And on the rivers, hamacanes (hammocks), sauali (woven bamboo mats), cañas (walking-sticks) and bayones are sold; a bayon, he explains, is a sack in which to put sugar, made from woven buri (wild palm). In Jaro the market is on Thursdays, when people from the provinces of Antique, Capiz and Panay come together by boat. The towns of Molo (Parian), Manduriao, Arévalo and Ilo-ilo owed, for the most part, their prosperity, fortune and wealth to the Thursday trade fairs in Jaro. Laureano shows movement when he describes the “mad rush for the booths that sell coconut oil for lamps and for the place where the foamy tubá (palm wine) is for sale, pleasure of the followers of the god Bacchus”. Vista del Rio Jalaud

Camino del Cementerio – Tansa (Ilo-ilo)

Vista de la Calle del Progreso – Ilo-ilo

Amongst all the different vegetables and fruits there are also the tents “of a beautiful mestiza or of a charming native selling sedemaso (raw silk), piña (precious fabric from pineapple fiber), jusi (fabric woven from abaca (Manila hemp)), cantong (bags), [and] sinamay (see below) of the most precious designs, delicately fashioned and of exquisite taste”. Laureano also bids the reader to enjoy the sounds from the tiangui (trade fair): “The liveliness is always extraordinary: the shouting, the noise of many voices … [including those of] itinerant merchants who go from place to place and booth to booth, selling native desserts: Bili po cayo, suman, ibus, tamales, poto, bibinca, at cotchinta!”. Bugasong Town By the river, the town of Bugasong is crowded with haciendas (estates), and sugar plantations “with their towering chimneys spewing tufts of smoke night and day”. “The street called Pojó is of great importance since it is always bustling with the trade of the insic (Chinese) who have

Vista de la Catedral de Jaro

Vista del Muelle y Ria de Ilo-ilo

established themselves here.” Laureano also speaks of the textile industry of patadiong, tapis and sinamay; he explains: Patadiong is a skirt used by women from the Bisayas and the straits of Malacca, a multicolored horizontal-lined cloth, a meter and a half wide, wound gracefully and cinched by one of the pleats around the waist. Its pleats present a vistoso de golpe (striking sight), impressive, irresistible, attractive and bestowing charm on the comely Bisayan pollas (chicks). Tapis is a cotton fabric used as a short overskirt by Tagalog women. Sinamay is a fine silk-like fabric with delicate threads made from pineapple leaves.

Laureano gives this bustling town character when he mentions that it is known not only for its fighting cocks but also, on the literary side, as the home town of the Visayan poet Capitán Miguel Legazpi, and of the ex-gobernadorcillo (municipal governor) Ninong Javison, a celebrated author of various tragedies.


˂ Baño en las Vertientes de Uli-an y Tagbacan

Baths on the mountain slopes Laureano also places on the map the “mountains of Tagbacán and Ulián that divide the province of Ilo-ilo from those of Capiz and Antique”, and as readers we can look for the inclines and remarkable slopes from where gush huge quantities of water that form, at the foot of both mountains, an extended linao (lake) whose “great volume of water flows gently towards the rivers of Lambunao, Pasi and Calinog”. A particular photograph of his is that of a family of Negritos which, he states, “lives on the foothills of these mountains”. ”While bathing, the Aetas catch crabs and other small fish which they can easily grab by hand for food.” From the geography of mountains and rivers, Laureano turns to naming the different bodies of water that are “so abundant in Filipino towns that wherever you look, by roads and byways, in the woods and lowlands, one finds the spectacle of different kinds of baths”: sapa (streams), tulugban (open drainage ditches), danáo (deep pools), zacatales (swamps where mountain grasses are sown and planted), and humayán (rice fields). Perhaps recalling his childhood memories, he continues:


In the danáo, in the zacatales and humayán, tauos (men)and batas (boys) bathe to gather iguí (swamp snails). In the tulugban boys muddy themselves to catch puyo or dalag, small, black swamp fish which, when cooked in vinegar and water with guava leaves, are of exquisite taste.

It would be a loss to look at Laureano’s photographs without reading the accompanying texts. He describes Jaro Cathedral, with great flair, as having “three naves without which its style tends to the gothic. The bell tower is separated from the body of the building, having split off before the completion of the work on the façade of the cathedral because of an earthquake.” The photo shows, in front of the cathedral, “the elegant Eiffel Tower constructed of cau-yáan (bamboo cane), erected for the feast of the Virgin of the Candles, titular patroness of the city”. One essay in the book was written by Proceso Maginoclogon, a friend of Laureano in Paris, who describes the recently-completed church in Otón, Ilo-ilo (his birthplace) as follows: The whole edifice of the temple is of stone. The exterior of the temple is severe, exuding a distinct grandeur. The cupola is graceful; the towers show a unity of surprising perspective. According to experts, it is one of the most remarkable churches of the Philippines.

which are placed at regular intervals iron benches for resting. This plaza makes for a delightful stroll. All the elegant and beautiful people of llo-ilo promenade here on Sundays and holidays.” He mentions a bullfight at the Plaza de Torros (bullring) in Ilo-ilo. Although he describes the Plaza as “constructed of bamboo, but solid and elegantly made”, he dismisses the spectacle stating “the animals are better fit for eating than for fighting”. Other spectacles which he photographs are the Ati-Ati (Dance of the Aetas) and the Sinulog or Moro-Moro folk dances; it is interesting to compare how they were performed then compared to now. The photo album also weaves us through the different streets:

Interior de la Iglesia de Oton

The interior of the church, designed by the Filipino artist Miguel Zaragoza (1842-1923), is said to be ”an emporium of beauties”, and “the main altar of this new church, strictly of the Gothic style, is most charming and majestic”.(3) Streets of Ilo-ilo Laureano then takes us to Calle del Progreso, the best street of Ilo-ilo, which runs along the plaza. “The buildings that beautify it and give prominence to its name are grand, elegant, semi-palaces of oriental luxury.” He names a number of people’s homes along this street, and singles out some of them: Among other buildings what stands out for its grandeur is the slender house of the well-todo German Herr Samuel Bisschoff, who from selling watches amassed a great fortune in a short period of time. The houses of Jorbes Mm. Ker and Co., Smith Bell and Co. have established their commercial shops and offices in magnificent buildings along this street [which] ends in the wharf.

Right by Calle del Progresso is the Plaza of Iloilo, “one of the beautiful plazas of the Philippines, wide, a perfect square, adorned by pretty gardens, its edges bordered by Talisays (beach almond) and other shade trees under

Calle Real is notable for its length and breadth, at the end of which is the beautiful palace of the provincial Government, recently constructed, and there are also Chinese establishments and shops set up along this street. Calle Iznard and Ordas Boulevard call attention for being wide and long, forming an endless avenue. In Taubman … close to the bridge from Jaro to Ilo-ilo, is the magnificent house that used to be the English consulate during the time of D. Nicolás Lone, now the property of former Captain D. Nicolas Abandon. Houses of nipa (mangrove palm) and board, beautifully constructed, adorn this crowded barrio. They are houses of recreation. In this place also are various warehouses to store sugar.

The first Filipino photographer Laureano worked to translate the native world for his audience. Clearly, he spoke the local languages. The Recuerdos de Filipinas is a historical source articulating the dynamic lives of ordinary Filipinos, each with their own vibrancy and agency, mostly undocumented, and compiled by a Filipino. It is a history of lives that were lived without ever leaving written documents save this and others which, as the historian William Henry Scott would state, are “cracks in the parchment curtain”. Here in Panay, Felix Laureano made the cracks wider for us to peer into with his display of photographs and text to complement the maps.


Image credits

Una Corrida de Toros – Plaza de Ilo-ilo

The photograph of Felix Laureano with his siblings, kindly provided by Professor María de los Santos García Felguera, was in the possession of the late Carmen Marcelo, a descendent of the photographer’s family in Spain. The original photograph is torn and the image has been restored by Ruben Canlas, Jr. All other images are from the digital facsimile of Recuerdos de Filipinas published online by the Falvey Memorial Library, Villanova University, Pennsylvania: References María de los Santos García Felguera, “The Filipino Photographer Félix Laureano (1866-1952) in Barcelona”, paper presented at the symposium Bugasong to Barcelona. Legacy of Felix Laureano: The First Filipino Photographer, Center for West Visayan Studies (CWVS), University of the Philippines in Visayas, Iloilo City, June 15, 2015, translated from the Spanish original by Francisco G. Villanueva. Felix Laureano, Recuerdos de Filipinas: Álbum-libro, A Tool for the Study and Understanding of the Ways and Customs of these Islands with 37 Phototypies Taken and Copied from Real Life, edited by Felice Noelle Rodriguez and Ramon C. Sunico, translated by Felice Noelle Rodriguez and Renan Prado, Cacho Publishing House, Mandaluyong, 2001. Felice Noelle Rodriguez, “Introduction”, in Recuerdos de Filipinas, op cit. William Henry Scott, Cracks in the Parchment Curtain and Other Essays in Philippine History, New Day Publishers, Quezon City, 1982. Notes (1)

Felix Laureano was born to Norberta Laureano Almonte (or de los Santos), who was a widow and an independent, successful businesswoman in Panay, and Augustinian friar Manuel Asensio from Zamora, Spain, who was assigned to Patnongon and later to Bugasong, where Norberta and her children joined him; see Maria de los Santos García Felguera, op cit.


The collotype process, invented by the Frenchman Alphonse Poitevin in 1855, uses plates of glass or metal coated with dichromated gelatin to print images in a wide variety of tones without the need for halftone screens. The process was used for mechanical printing until replaced by cheaper offset lithography in the early part of the 20th century; see: Bernard E. Jones, Cassell’s Cyclopædia of Photography, Funk & Wagnalls Company, New York, 1912.


Sadly, Oton Church, an impressive example of Spanish-Filipino colonial architecture, was severely damaged in 1948 by the 7.8 magnitude “Lady Caycay” earthquake, which had its epicenter in Antique Province. The rubble was demolished in the 1960s to make way for an entirely new church.


Enrique Abella y Casariego’s “Isla de Panay – Bosquejo Geológico” A Cartographic Reconnaissance by Raphael P.M. Lotilla


HE MAP Isla de Panay (1) represents a high level of technical accomplishment in the Philippines towards the end of the Spanish colonial period. The secondary title, Bosquejo Geológico,(2) indicates the map’s coverage of the island’s geology. Colored in shades of tawny and yellow, the two-sheet map measures 99.7 cm x 76.4 cm. Authored by Don Enrique Abella y Casariego, Inspector General de Minas del Archipiélago, it was printed by the Manila lithographers Carmelo y Bauermann. The map and the monograph The 1 : 200,000 scale map forms part of a monograph, Descripción Física, Geológica y Minera en Bosquejo de la Isla de Panay.(3) Published in Escolta, Manila in 1890 by TipoLitografía de Chofré y Compania, the work was originally started in 1885 as an official report prepared for the Comisión Especial de Estudios Geológicos y Geográficos de Filipinas. This body was abolished the following year in a reorganization of offices in the colony, but Abella’s work continued under the auspices of the Inspección General de Minas de las islas Filipinas, originally set up in 1837.(4)

The map is best appreciated alongside the narrative descriptions, which are contained mainly in the first part of the book titled Descripción Física. Complementing the map are 36 orographic sketches of Panay Island’s main mountains which, in a number of cases, indicate the rivers flowing through them. These sketches are integrated into the book’s text. At the end of the first part appears an accompanying list of 219 referenced places and geographical points in Panay, with their respective heights indicated in meters. The list augments the altitude readings shown on the map by numbers adjacent to several prominent mountains. The map’s colors signify geological information as explained in the legend. The alluvial areas (aluviones) indicated on the map are described principally in the book’s first part in relation to the hydrography of the island. The hypogene rocks and volcanic tuff (rocas hipogénicas y sus tobas) on the one hand, as well as the tertiaries (as these were classified in the geological sciences of that time) and the limestones (rocas terciarias y calizas) on the other are also separately colored.

Detail from Enrique Abella y Casariego’s Isla de Panay – Bosquejo Geológico, 1890 (image courtesy of Biblioteca Nacional de España) 49

the same period, Ordaz goes on to observe: “There can be no doubt that Abella’s geological description of Panay – in its approach, meticulousness, and scientific rigor – is at the same level as other similar work, regional in scope, carried out in the Peninsula by his colleagues; even more so if we take into account the technical difficulties and the lack of means and personnel with which he had to cope.”(6)

Portrait of Enrique Abella y Casariego (image courtesy of Miguel de Benavides Library and Archives, University of Santo Tomas)

The color-coded geological information is discussed in the second part of the book titled Descripción Geológica, which occupies the most extensive portion of the publication. A brief description of minerals appears as the third part of the book titled Descripción Minera. The map of Panay is inserted towards the end of the book in two separate folded sheets. The monograph’s contents are organized according to an outline similar to that adopted by Abella in his previous work on the island of Cebu, commissioned in 1878.(5) As stated by Abella in his prologue, the outline adheres to the model established in publications of this genre by the Comisión del Mapa Geológico de España, established in 1849. Jorge Ordaz, professor of geology at the University of Oviedo, has concluded that: “As far as the Philippines is concerned, Abella’s work can be considered, without risk of exaggeration, as the most complete geological monograph published in the 19th century focusing on a part of the Archipelago.”(6) Comparing Abella’s publication with others produced in Spain during


Beyond its ground-breaking contributions to the field of geological studies, the Abella map is significant as the pioneering topographic map, based on field surveys and measurements, focusing solely on Panay and an associated island, Guimaras. For the first time, the map delineated completely the land boundaries among the four principal political units of Panay during that period of Spanish rule: the three provinces of Antique, Cápiz and Iloilo, and the comandancia (7) of Concepcion. The map also specifies the location of all of the pueblos in Panay: 19 in Antique, of which four are inland and 15 are coastal; 33 in Cápiz, of which 19 are inland and 14 are coastal; 38 in Iloilo, of which 23 are inland and 15 are coastal; and six in Concepcion, of which two are inland and four are coastal. Important or old settlements other than pueblos are also named. The mapping of the island’s road systems was another first. The three classifications were:(8) camino carretero, which could be traversed by carriages on two wheels; camino de herradura, which was a trail or bridle path that could be traversed by horses but not carriages; and sendas, which could be traversed only on foot. The main roads connected most neighboring pueblos within the different provinces but, according to other sources, the quality was uneven. In Iloilo, the roads were generally fine and travel was easy between most of the towns, although bridges were rare and their lack became a pronounced problem in the rainy season. In Cápiz, then divided into the two administrative districts of Ilaya and Aclan, travel between the towns was easier during the dry season than during the arduous rainy months. In Antique, there were “regular” roads connec-ting the pueblos, specially from north to south along the coast, but the roads to Iloilo and Cápiz became impassable during the rainy season.(9)

Isla de Panay – Bosquejo Geológico by Enrique Abella y Casariego, 1890 (image courtesy of Biblioteca Nacional de España)


The inter-provincial roads between Iloilo and Cápiz could be traveled by carriages passing through various pueblos. But the coastal route around the southern tip of Panay was shown on the map as only a trail from Lauigan in San Joaquin, Iloilo to Casay in Anini-y, Antique. Another southern route led through the mountain pass between Iloilo and Antique, from Tiolas in San Joaquin to La Granja (or Guintás) in Hamtic. Described as “the best of all” in terms of accessibility among those mountainous parts, Abella notes that at one time the route was traveled by two-wheeled vehicles, although “nowadays [it] is merely a good bridle path during the dry season.” The general trajectory coincides to a major extent with today’s main road from San Joaquin, Iloilo to Hamtic, Antique. The connecting route through a pass between Pandan, Antique and Navas, Cápiz (now part of Aklan) in northern Panay is also marked on the map with broken lines indicating a camino de herradura. But the book notes that “it is easy to pass from one point to any side of the cordillera, since the road from Pandan to Ibajay [passing through Barrio Santa Cruz] is very much frequented”.(10) This route is followed today by the Aklan-Antique road, a comfortable drive with minimal steep climbs from Navas in Aklan to Pandan in Antique. The local transport of goods made use of the rivers, and the state of the road systems shown on the map was an indication that the main route for the inter-provincial commerce of goods was by sea and not by land, with both Antique and Cápiz serviced by steam ships traveling to Iloilo and Manila.(11) The sendas on the map, on the other hand, traversed the depressions or puertos (passes) through the north-south mountain ranges, which facilitated inland travel by the locals in the mountainous areas. In the cordilllera, there are numerous such puertos allowing passage from Antique to Cápiz and Iloilo. Among these, the best known and relatively frequented are found at the upper portion of the cordillera between Mount Usigan and Mount Congcong. These include the pass from Mount Naimbong, south of Agotay, which runs from the Ibajay valley to the Naimbong stream; the passage from Mount Paningayan to the north of Toctocón; the pass from Mounts Tuno and Agmatayo to Cangaranan; the pass from Mount Llorente to the Sibálom river valley in Antique;


another between Mount Tigurán and Mount Igdalig; that from Mount Caligtugan northwards to Mount Tambara and Mount Upao; and one that runs along the slope of Amayon, north of Balatinao, from the Tumagboc river to the Tigpulúan river. A smaller and separate view contained in a foldout in the book indicates the geological profile and diagram of one such route starting out from Panay’s western side as a camino carretero in the coastal pueblo of San Pedro,(12) Antique. Proceeding inland to the pueblo of Sibálom, the route continues through the settlements of Cúbay, Nagdayao, Pisanan, Bontol and Lúpit, initially as a camino de herradura but turning into a senda, over the cordillera through Mount Amayon and, after the upland settlements of Olangó, Barín, Tumagboc and San Sebastian reaches the coastal pueblo of Miagao, Iloilo to the southeast. The fold-out, which appears in the book’s back pages after the comprehensive index, contains three sections of geological diagrams. The second profile is drawn from the mouth of the Cangarangan river in Antique in the west; through the town of Valderrama; over Mount Manarapon and the cordillera, the upper levels of the Suague river, Mount Barasalon, Cerro Banate, and the lower levels of the Suague; through the settlement of Danao and the towns of Janíuay and (across the Jalaur river) Anilao in Iloilo; to end at the mouth of the Dunlaan river on the eastern coast of Panay. The third coast-to-coast profile is a shorter one across the southern tip of Panay, starting from Dao in Antique in the west through Mount Nagsucubang to the Cresta del Gallo and Mount Nasog on the east coast. These geological profiles and diagrams have an interesting feature not usually observed in Philippine maps: they are drawn with a horizontal scale of 1 : 200,000, but with a different vertical scale of 1 : 20,000 which emphasizes the height of the mountains. A legend explains the hatchings that indicate the geology of the land and mountains: sedimentary rocks, comprised of limestones (calizas), clays (arcillas), sandstones (areniscas) and conglomerates (conglomerados); and hypogene rocks and volcanic tuff (rocas hipogénicas y sus tobas).

Diagrams of geological sections from Abella’s Descripción Física, Geológica y Minera en Bosquejo de la Isla de Panay (from the Aurora A. Lotilla collection)

In addition, the book includes two lithographs of selected natural features: the Cueva Grande de Lapos-Lapos in Dingle, Iloilo, and La Piedra de Igbarás, Cúspide (summit) del Monte Napúlac, also in Iloilo. The milieu of the map The total land area of Panay Island as calculated by the Abella team based on his map (prepared specially for this purpose) was 11,580 sq. kms., divided into Antique 2,472 sq. kms.; Cápiz 4,547 sq. kms.; and Iloilo 4,561 sq. kms. (including the comandancia of Concepcion, 806 sq. kms.). In addition, the combined land areas of the nearby islands included in the respective jurisdictions of these principal units were estimated as: Antique 27 sq. kms.; Cápiz 55 sq. kms.; Iloilo 598 sq. kms.; and Concepcion 107 sq. kms. Abella narrated the challenges faced by the team in conducting a survey of the mountains of Panay, as it had done a few years earlier in Cebu. Compared to Cebu, Panay has a more extensive land area and, when the survey was conducted, still had large forested and unpopulated areas. Along mountainous terrain covered with exuberant tropical vegetation, “orographic surveys are made with great difficulty and little success.” Impenetrable branches resembling matted weaves of vegetation restricted the view to a limited horizon, generally insufficient to appreciate the details and configurational relationships of the mountain masses. Still, knowing that no similar survey had ever been conducted “of such an

important island,” the survey team forged ahead, confident that their pioneering orographic study would serve some value. The survey established that, contrary to the general belief at that time, there is only one mountain range or cordillera in the true sense of the word in Panay. Manuel Buzeta(13) (among others) had presented the long-standing impression that the system of mountains in Panay originated at the island’s center, forming a triangular pyramid of three grand cordilleras that constituted the inscrutable boundaries of its three provinces. Panay’s sole true cordillera runs almost northsouth, from the island’s small northwestern peninsula down to the southwestern tip of the island, separating Antique province from Cápiz (including present-day Aklan) and Iloilo. The survey found that while there are also mountains running to the north (between the towns of Batan and Cápiz) and to the east, these do not form well-associated linear series, nor do they reach heights that are manifested in a true mountain range. Despite its proximity to the sea on Panay’s northwestern side near Culasi, Antique, the highest point on the island (and the secondhighest mountain in the Visayas) is Mount Madia-as at an altitude of 2,180 meters. Prominent mountains to the north include Toctocón (1,400 m.), Agotay (1,130 m.), Balabag (1,800 m) and Usigan (1,290 m.).


Southwards, the following mountains stand out: Nangtud (2,050 m.), Baloy (1,730 m.), Tuno (1,110 m.) and Llorente (over 1,343 m.). From there, the cordillera turns to the southwest and follows the mountains of Inamán,(14) Tigurán (1,470 .m), Igbanig (1,303 m.), Upao,(14) Tigbayot (1,010 m.) and Congcong (1,070 m.). Then the cordillera becomes somewhat depressed as it continues towards the southwest to Mount Nagsucúbang, where it ends and branches out radially into the headlands of Násog, Caducdula Anini-y and Jagdán at the southern tip of Panay. The team highlighted Mount Baloy as perhaps the most significant mountain in the entire island from politico-geographical, orographic and hydrographic perspectives. It serves today, as it did then, as the territorial landmark for Antique, Cápiz and Iloilo provinces. The dome shape and circular form of its peak stand out from the rest of the cordillera with its slopes forming the source of several important rivers, including: eastwards the Jalaur of Iloilo and the Panay of Cápiz; westwards the Cangarangan of Antique; and northwards the Aclan (although, strictly speaking, it does originate from the same summit of Mount Baloy as the others). The terrestrial waters of Panay were classified by the team into three hydrographic zones. The central region, extending east of the cordillera to the comandancia of Concepcion, contains the rivers with the longest run and flow. The zone west of the cordillera, covered by Antique province, has some notable rivers but of shorter run and lesser flow.(15) The eastern zone, covered by Concepcion, contains only short rivers with secondary currents, a number of which flow through plains that are productive for cultivation. The Panay and the Jalaur are the two rivers in the island’s central hydrographic region that are

conspicuously noticeable from the rest in the entire island.(16) The survey noted that they are very similar to each other in their flow, route and other circumstances. From Mount Baloy, they head towards the east until they hit the irregular barrier of the eastern mountains in Concepcion and turn their courses north and south respectively. The basins of each of these two rivers form the most extensive or important areas of the provinces of Cápiz and Iloilo, and their watershed is also that of both provinces. The survey team viewed the meeting of these two basins as forming a great fan, with its handle located on Mount Baloy, and its extremes being at the mouths of the Panay and Jalaur rivers in Cápiz and Iloilo respectively. Over and above these technical observations, Abella must have sensed how Baloy dominated the popular imagination in Panay. He was impelled to narrate, twice, a story recounted by mountain folk on the upper levels of the rivers: a cabúgao (pomelo) tree stood on Mount Baloy, and its fruit would end up in the waters of the Jalaur, the Panay or the Aclán depending on which side of the mountain they fell. Southwards of Baloy, the team explored Mount Llorente (17) with slopes not as pronounced as those of Mount Madia-as but “more collosal and voluminous.” From Llorente and its transversal foothills to the east flow the two arms of the Suague river, the Masinao and the Malibug, whose waters eventually join those of the Jalaur. To the west of Llorente’s massif lies the dividing line between the Sibálom de Antique and its important tributary, the Maninila. As they expected, the members of the team found the major areas of alluvial deposits in Panay in the proximity of the mouths of the island’s four principal rivers, namely the Jalaur,(18) the Panay,(19) the Aclan,(20) and the Sibálom de Antique.

Profile of the cordillera along the Sibalom River (from the Aurora A. Lotilla collection)


Profile of Monte Madia-as (from the Aurora A. Lotilla collection)

Population and trade Given Abella’s detailed physical survey of Panay, one could have expected him to discuss the socio-economic conditions of the island, as he had done in his 1886 study of Cebu. Instead, these were relegated to a mere footnote. The author did make an effort to underline the island’s importance by highlighting that it had, approximately, more than a million inhabitants, with a number of neighboring towns in Iloilo having a population density equaling the largest in Europe. The island’s flourishing agriculture produced significant quantities of sugarcane, rice, tobacco and corn, and the sugar, textile, and timber industries were among the more noteworthy in the archipelago. Notably, Iloilo’s port handled the largest volume of goods for export and import next to Manila. But there was a dearth of other economic, demographic and other island-wide data. The division of Panay into different administrative units, unlike Cebu Island which formed a single unified province, may have contributed to the lack of accessible data “with sufficient precision or verisimilitude and approximation” lamented by the author. The population statistics in the Guía Oficial de Filipinas (21) exhibited inconsistencies which may explain Abella’s reticence to rely on them. The Guías for 1885 and 1886 contained a table of the population by province according to the 1876 census of baptized natives in each

parish.(22) An accompanying explanation showed how a comparison was made with previous census results to arrive at the average annual population growth rate.(23) A second table provided the population for the same provinces adjusted by 10% upward from the 1876 figures, based on the average growth rate. The resulting figures reported were: Antique with 119,055 inhabitants and a population density of 50.66 per sq. km.; Capiz with 234,474 inhabitants and a density of 86.84 per sq. km.; and Iloilo (including Concepcion) with 479,486 inhabitants and a density of 199.08 per sq. km. The Guía for 1885 also presented another set of population figures in its individual reviews of the provinces of Capiz and Iloilo (including Concepcion): 231,680 and 449,588 inhabitants, respectively. For 1886, the Guía’s individual provincial reviews reported the same number of inhabitants for Capiz; 451,571 for Iloilo (including Concepcion); and 105,314 for Antique, and these numbers were repeated (with no explanation on how they were derived) in the Guía for 1889. However, the Guía for 1886 also provided still another set of population numbers: 108,241 inhabitants for Antique; 213,159 for Capiz; 420,010 for Iloilo by itself; and 15,886 for Concepcion. The total population of Panay based on any and all of the inconsistent reports mentioned above falls below the more-than-a-million inhabitants


estimated by Abella. Living in the mountainous boundary between Antique and Capiz, there were reports of numerous important tribes and families of indios monteses (mountain natives). Visayan by race, language and custom, they were descendants of those who escaped the forced resettlements organized by the Spaniards “for fear of justice or to be freed from taxation.” Many of them went down to the markets of the interior towns to trade tobacco, wax, vines and other products in exchange for the goods they needed. In the populated areas along the coast, there were also muchos mestizos europeos y chinos y una numerosa Colonia China esparcida por toda la provincial (many European and Chinese mestizos, and a large Chinese colony scattered throughout the province). Even if the previous census counts were reliable, these additional inhabitants probably could not have pushed the total population upwards by around 250,000 to reach one million.(24)

included the export trade of Capiz, Antique and Negros Island, and consisted primarily of sugar. Coastwise trade, particularly to Masbate, Cebu, Mindanao and other parts of the archipelago, was also important. Importation was considerable for the needs of Panay and neighboring islands. The main imported goods included agricultural machinery and hardware; cotton, silk and other fabrics; and drinks and groceries from Europe. Incidentally, the 1889 Guía found it important enough to mention that Iloilo had an inn, a café, numerous bazaars, warehouses, shops “as well stocked as the best in Manila”, other public establishments, and a bi-weekly newspaper.(25) The mapmakers

Despite inconsistencies, a number of statistics cited in the 1889 Guía from previous years are nevertheless informative. It reported that, in 1884, 2,140 sailing ships departed from the port of Iloilo for other parts of the Philippines with 74,000 tons of cargo; in addition, 425 steamships departed, carrying 124,000 tons of cargo. 61 sailing ships and 23 steamships departed for foreign ports, carrying 60,000 tons and 23,000 tons of cargo respectively.

The 1890 Isla de Panay – Bosquejo Geológico was an output of the productive collaboration principally between two Enriques: Abella y Casariego and d’Almonte y Muriel. Abella was senior in rank, educational attainment and age, and took credit for the authorship of the map, but he also took every opportunity to give due recognition to the indispensable contributions of his subordinate. Each of them served the longest among their mining colleagues of comparable rank in the Philippines – Abella for 20 years from 1877 to 1897 as a mining engineer; D’Almonte for 18 years from 1880 to 1898 as a scientific/technical assistant.(26)

The port of Iloilo was opened to international trade in 1855 – in a break from Manila’s exclusivity – together with the ports of Sual in Pangasinan and Zamboanga in Mindanao. Its importance grew rapidly, from handling annual exports of just over 1,000 tons (18,00 piculs) of sugar in 1860 to 100,000 tons in 1889. This

Abella’s professional life was spent with distinction in two worlds which, to him, were probably one: Peninsular Spain and Insular Philippines. He was described in the book Galeria de Filipinos Ilustres (27) as one of the most renowned eminences in the scientific field produced by the Philippines. La Piedra de Igbarás, Cúspide del Monte Napúlac – Iloilo (from the Aurora A. Lotilla collection)


Cueva Grande de Lapos-Lapos, Dingle, Iloilo (from the Aurora A. Lotilla collection)

The book’s author considered him a Filipino, having been born in the Philippines of Spanish parents. Isabel Rábano’s recent article on Abella’s biography,(28) another on the history of the Office of Mines in the Philippines,(29) and several others on science and engineering in the Philippines (30) together provide a view into various aspects of his professional and personal life as recounted in this section. Enrique Abella, born in Manila on October 23, 1847, belonged to the second generation in his family to serve Spain in the Philippines. His father Venancio Maria Abella y Rojo hailed from La Coruña in Galicia and was a civil servant for more than 20 years in the islands with the Ministry of Finance.(31) Following in the steps of his two elder brothers,(32) Abella went to Spain for schooling. He completed his studies at the Escuela de Minas (School of Mining Engineers) in Madrid and joined the Cuerpo de Minas (Corps of Mining Engineers) in 1870 as a second engineer. After his apprenticeship in the state-owned mines of Jaen and working in the Junta Superior Facultativa de Minería (Superior Facultative Board of Mining) in Madrid in 1872, he was assigned to the government mines in La Coruña and Oviedo. In 1874, he left to work briefly with the private sector but rejoined the Corps in the same year. With the opening of a position for a second mining engineer in the Philippines in 1876, Abella was chosen for the appointment in part because of his experience in coal mining, which had gained importance in the colony. The assignment carried with it a doubling of his salary for an overseas posting and an automatic

promotion to the next rank – not an entirely bad arrangement for one who was “returning home”. Abella arrived in the Philippines in 1877 to join the oldest technical office in the islands, headed then by José Centeno García. Centeno was the chief of the Inspección General de Minas de Filipinas (General Inspection of Mines) which had been established in 1837 by a Real Orden (royal decree) along with those for Cuba and Puerto Rico. Assigned to the Philippines in 1867, Centeno was credited for giving a decisive push to geological studies in the country.(33) He also carried out pioneering studies on earthquakes, volcanoes and subterranean waters, and published the Memoria geológico-minera de las Islas Filipinas with an accompanying map indicating coal deposits, principal volcanoes and volcanic manifestations.(34) His article on the Luzon earthquake of 1880 was translated into English and published in the Transactions of the Seismological Society of Japan, and subsequent articles were published in the Boletín de la Comisión del Mapa Geológico de España. Politically, Centeno was anti-clerical, republican and a Mason – all of which complicated his relationship with religious leaders (including the Jesuits) (35) and conservative groups, and gave rise to future challenges for the Inspection of Mines, particularly its abolition, though briefly, in 1886. There is general agreement that it was Abella, building on Centeno’s work, who contributed most to geological studies in the Philippines during the last quarter of the 19th century, covering multiple aspects: geology, geography, mineralogy, hydrology, volcanology and


seismology. Among Abella’s many publications were works on gold deposits in the second district of Mindanao; a review of the minerals of the Philippines; notes on the earthquakes in Nueva Vizcaya in 1881; sulfur mines on the island of Biliran; volcanic emissions from Mount Maquilin and Mount Malinao; Mount Mayon; medicinal-mineral springs in the archipelago; the geology of Cebu (op cit); and (after his monograph and map of Panay had been published) the earthquakes felt in Luzon, especially in Pangasinan, La Union and Benguet in March and April 1892. Abella’s celebrated work on Panay was almost aborted although it commenced on a high note. In 1885, a Comisión Especial de Estudios Geológicos y Geográficos de Filipinas was created and Abella was appointed as its head. The reconnaissance, geological survey and mapping of Panay was its immediate assignment. But, as Abella recounted in his prologue, a supervening reorganization of the bureaucracy a year later abolished the new office and its Panay survey records were relegated “by superior order” to a storage area infested with anay (white termites). Fortunately, by virtue of a Real Orden, Governor-General Valeriano Weyler y Nicolau and his Director-General of Civil Administration, Benigno Quiroga, had the interrupted initiative on Panay resumed in 1887. The Panay records were rescued from destruction and, despite some delays, eventually completed. On the political front, the maintenance of the colonial order was a major preoccupation for Abella. Unsurprisingly, he gave the support of the Inspection of Mines to the suppression of the Philippine Revolution. After the outbreak of the revolution in 1896, Abella was appointed interim Secretary of the General Government under the new Governor-General Camilo García de Polavieja. Rábano records his participation in the arrest, trial and execution of José Rizal for the crimes of sedition and rebellion. As head of the Secretariat, he not only provided confidential information at the disposal of his office through a report for the military court, but also his personal opinion that the data contained in the report led to the moral conviction of Rizal’s immense responsibility. He characterized Rizal as the great agitator. Perhaps for these reasons, Abella never came


back to the Philippines after returning to Spain in July 1897 and, from there, formally resigning from his Philippine post in 1898.(36) In Spain, Abella served in various capacities. He allied himself politically with the conservative group of Polavieja and became Gobernador Civil of the province of Almería in 1899. He was elected in 1899, 1901, 1903 and 1905 to the Spanish Cortes (parliament) as a Deputy representing the town of Becerreá in Lugo, Galicia. Abella died in Madrid on January 12, 1913. To his intellectual credit, in a note below the Isla de Panay’s title, Abella prominently acknowledged that most of the geographic and topographic requirements for the map were carried out by d’Almonte. In the book’s prologue, Abella profusely praised d'Almonte not only for executing most of the topographies in the field but also for carrying out all the corresponding desk work with intelligence, zeal and diligence. Abella also cited d’Almonte for lending himself “with an enthusiasm very worthy of the applause and recognition that with real pleasure we give him, to draw personally on the lithographic stones all the orography and many topographic details of the map of Panay”, and ascribed to him their resulting accuracy and beauty. Born in Seville in 1858 to an Italian father and a Cadiz-born mother, Enrique d’Almonte (38) excelled in his early school years and won awards for his geographic drawings and maps. He earned entry into the Escuela de Ingenieros de Caminos in 1876 despite the economic hardships of his family which forced his father to emigrate to Brazil. Following the latter’s death, d’Almonte was forced, probably for economic reasons, to abort his civil engineering studies and apply in 1878 for a vacant position as an assistant in the Cuerpo Auxiliar Facultativo de Minas, intending to use his drawing skills with the Comisión del Mapa Geológico de España. In 1880 he requested transfer to the Inspección General de Minas de Filipinas where, as the only auxiliar (assistant), he collaborated with the two mining engineers, Centeno and Abella, on both their geographic and cartographic work. Centeno had only appreciative words for the young assistant who, in his first three years of service in the Philippines, produced perhaps his

Rodriguez observes that: Although this procedure results in improved cartographic accuracy, the lack of a global triangulation of the territory, as had been undertaken in Spain in those years (and which was clearly impossible to achieve in the Philippines) left to the intuition of the cartographer the assembly of all the parts studied.(42)

As perhaps the Abella book and map on Panay best illustrate, the methods employed have been summarized by José Rodriguez and Alicia Campos as follows:

Photograph of Enrique d'Almonte y Muriel by Francisco Van Camp, Manila, 1886 (image courtesy of Bibliothèque nationale de France

best-known map, the Isla de Luzon y sus Adyacentes at a scale of 1 : 400,000. It was published, in four sheets, in Madrid in 1883 by the Comisión del Mapa Geológico de España and was re-issued in 1887 at a scale of 1 : 800,000. Between 1882 and 1898, d’Almonte produced at least 22 maps relating to the Philippines.(39) D’Almonte probably learned to measure angles and distances on the ground from the engineers and assistants who were carrying out various topographic works even before his arrival.(40) The survey methodology is described briefly in the title cartouche of a map of Cebu published by Abella in 1884: El procedimiento que se empleó en las campañas de trabajos de 1879 y 1880 fué el de recorrimientos topográficos con teolodito ó con brújula, dirigidos por las lineas hidrográficas principales y por todos los caminos de la isla con los que siempre se han cerrado grandes poligonos.(41) (The procedure used in the work campaigns of 1879 and 1880 was that of topographic surveys with theodolite or compass, guided by the main hydrographic lines and by all of the island's roads which always enclosed large polygons.)

The methods used by d’Almonte were based on a knowledge of hydrographic networks, an understanding of the main delineation of the mountain systems, the establishment of the most important altitude elevations, contact with the local populations for the delineation of roads and paths through settled areas whose geographic position was fixed by astronomical observations, and the location, hierarchy and correct denomination of the population centers. [The use of] the theodolite, the compass, the mechanical pedometer [for measuring distance] and the strong 1,650-meter thread reels allowed a precision whose error did not exceed 20 meters per kilometer.(43)

Rodriguez and Campos conclude that for d’Almonte it was not only a matter of measuring; the territory as a whole was studied, creating a schematic framework that in the subsequent technical desk work allowed him to put the cartographic pieces together. The authors remind us that this schematic concept was also built with the information provided by guides, interpreters and the local population. In their view, “the use of cartographic resources that we could call ‘light,’ and the control of all the processes of the map practiced by D’Almonte” made possible these extraordinary cartographic achievements.(43) D’Almonte is quoted as saying that “his love for geography was awakened upon arriving in the beautiful country of the Philippines”.(44) He shared his explorations and knowledge with the mining and forestry engineers in the islands and with scholars of the religious orders and local inhabitants and guides. The importance of


indigenous knowledge was demonstrated with the outbreak of the Philippine Revolution in 1896 when Filipino guides deserted the Spanish troops. To compensate for this loss and drawing on the practical knowledge he had acquired, d’Almonte acted as the guide for the Spanish army and prepared large-scale maps of the provinces of Cavite, Laguna and Batangas which were published by the Inspection of Mines for use by the army in its 1897 campaign against the revolutionaries. Full of curiosity, d’Almonte traveled both on his own initiative and for professional work commissioned by the government of the Philippines. As well as many parts of the archipelago, he visited Japan, China, Formosa, Indochina, Borneo, Java, Sumatra, the Celebes, the Moluccas, Melanesia and New Guinea, learning to speak Tagalog and other local languages, and to read Chinese. He also prepared an atlas that remained in manuscript form. According to John Bach, this 1899 compilation remained in the file of the United States and Geodetic Survey after the U.S. took over the Philippines from Spain: It contains 23 sheets (each 13 inches by 21 inches), and elicits no little esteem for its map presenting the entire Philippine Archipelago on a scale of 1 : 800,000. This masterpiece of cartography may be regarded as the climax of maps bequeathed to posterity by the scores of Spanish geographers. From numerous comparisons with the explorations which occurred during the American administration, it has been proven beyond a shadow of doubt that d’Almonte’s atlas and his series of maps of the principal islands eclipsed both in accuracy and completeness all the other topographic maps of the period.(45)

D'Almonte returned to Spain to join the mining corps in 1899 and was initially assigned to Granada. Later, he was appointed to the commission responsible for delimiting the Spanish possessions in the Gulf of Guinea. In 1913, having delivered his rectified map of continental Guinea to the Ministerio de Estado, he was commissioned by the Real Sociedad Geográfica to explore and map the territory of southern Morocco. According to Rodriguez and Campos, he visited the Philippines around 1915 and undertook another trip in 1917 which turned out to be his last. On April 17, 1917 he was killed 60

when his ship, the steamer Eizaguirre, hit a mine and sank while trying to enter the port of Cape Town in South Africa on its way to the Philippines. Legacy Abella’s Isla de Panay – Bosquejo Geológico undoubtedly reached the apogee of mapping excellence in the Spanish colonial period in the Philippines, particularly for the island of Panay. It was reproduced as a general map for Panay in the Atlas de Filipinas produced by Fr. José Algué in 1899.(46) Of the 30 maps in the Algué atlas, the first six were general ones including political, ethnographic, orographical and volcanological maps. Of the 24 detailed maps, 11 are credited to d’Almonte “with new data” and those of Cebu and Panay to Abella. Algué stated that his map of Panay is a reproduction of Abella’s, but some hydrographic and orographic details were removed to conform with the other maps in the atlas. The Abella map continued to be used as the source for maps of Panay published by the United States forces during the PhilippineAmerican War and the early American colonial period in the Philippines. In particular, the map titled Panay Military District No. 4 Department of the Visayas, by the Office Chief Engineer, Division of the Philippines, dated Manila, April, 1900, copies Abella’s map at the same scale of 1 : 200,000, but without the geological detail.(47) The network of telegraph lines linking the island’s main towns has been added, together with the undersea telegraph cables from Ilo-ilo to Manila, Cebu and Bacolod. Although the U.S. Army did not acknowledge its debt to Abella and d’Almonte, American civil officials such as John Bach were not as stingy in extending recognition to their Spanish predecessors. Warren du Pré Smith, who took over as Chief of the Division of Mines in Manila, was fulsome in his praise of both men: Enrique Abella y Casariego, the last Chief of the Spanish mining bureau, 1889 to 1897, was by far the ablest of the earlier investigators. It is a great pleasure to pay this tribute to our late colleague of another nationality. I have only words of commendation for his untiring efforts in the solution of the geologic and mining problems of the Philippines.(48)

Of all those engaged in map-making during the Spanish régime, [Enrique] D'Almonte stands out as the foremost. Certainly no other one man in the Philippines, either before or since, has accomplished so much. … Knowing, as I do, the natural difficulties of the country, the extremely savage people that exist in some parts of the islands, the very trying climatic conditions, I must regard D'Almonte as one of the great explorers of the twentieth century.(49)

In 1931 the Bureau of Coast and Geodetic Survey in Manila published a map of Panay at the same scale as Abella’s map; the title states: “Compiled from the following sources of information: Map of Panay by D.E. Abella y Casariego; U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey; U.S. Army Engineers; Philippine Government Bureaus; Provincial and Municipal Officials.”(50)

Conclusion The Abella expedition to Panay, by not altering geographical names that were generally recognized and widely-known among the population,(51) recognized indirectly that its principal informants and future users were the people of Panay. Meticulous effort was required to reflect the names of places whose sounds were uncommon in the Spanish language and that Spaniards generally had difficulty in pronouncing, such as the final “m” or the “ng”. The nearly universal observance of this rule has preserved numerous toponyms in the indigenous languages that are, together with the irreplaceable maps, sketches, notes and records of Abella and his colleagues on Panay, a rich resource for future scholarship.

This article is based on the presentation given to PHIMCOS by the author on February 21, 2018. The author gratefully acknowledges and thanks Alfredo Roca for his referral of an original copy of Abella’s book and its map; Professor Trinidad Regala, retired professor of Spanish at the University of the Philippines, for her translations of selected excerpts on the physical description of Panay in Abella’s book from the original Spanish; Professor María de los Santos García Felguera and Gregorio Escalada for discovering the portrait of Abella (which was published in El Mercantil, Manila, on March 1, 1906); Aaron Paul Madriñan of UP Diliman Libraries for providing the digital copy of Abella’s portrait; and Marti Bartolome for taking the photographs of items in the Aurora A. Lotilla collection. Quotations from publications in Spanish other than Abella’s book have been translated by either the author or the editor. Notes & references 1.

Biblioteca Nacional de España (BNE):


Bosquejo can be translated as an outline; the term was also used in geological maps of parts of Spain.




Jorge Ordaz, “Datos acerca de los estudios geológicos realizados en Filipinas el la época colonial”, in Llull, Vol. 20, Universidad de Zaragoza, 1997; and Isabel Rábano et al., La colección histórica de rocas de Filipinas del Museo Geominero, Instituto Geológico y Minero de España, Madrid, 2019.


Enrique Abella y Casariego, Rápida Descripción Física, Geológica y Minera de la Isla de Cebú, Imprenta y Fundición de Manuel Tello, Madrid, 1886.


Jorge Ordaz, “Un ejemplo de geologia colonial: el reconocimiento de las Islas de Panay (Filipinas), por Enrique Abella y Casariego”, in Geogaceta, Vol. 20 (6), Sociedad Geológica de España, 1996.


A comandancia was a territory under the authority of a military officer, attached to a province. Concepcion was a dependency of Iloilo, and today forms an integral part of that province.


For the English counterparts of the Spanish terms, see page 7 of the Atlas de Filipinas by P. José Algué S.J., U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey, Government Printing Office, Washington D.C., 1900


Road conditions are taken from the Guía Oficial de Filipinas for 1889; see note no. 21 below.

10. The book says through Barrio Sta. Ana, but the map indicates the route through Sta. Cruz. 11. See Alfred McCoy, “A Queen Dies Slowly: The Rise and Decline of Iloilo City”, in Philippine Social History: Global Trade and Local Transformations, Ateneo de Manila University Press, Quezon City, 1982.


12. San Pedro is now a barangay of San Jose, Antique. 13. Manuel Buzeta & Felipe Bravo, Diccionario Geográfico, Estadístico, Histórico De Las Islas Filipinas, Imprenta de D. José C. de la Peña, Madrid, 1850-51. 14. The map does not give altitude readings for Mount Inamán and Mount Upao. 15. The Sibálom de Antique is the province’s principal river, to be distinguished from the Sibálom de Iloilo river (which flows to the eastern side of the cordillera to exit on Panay’s southeastern coast); its principal tributaries are the Tigpuluan and Maninila rivers. Other important rivers of Antique highlighted by Abella include the Cangarangan, the Paliuan and the Dalanas; several minor rivers are also mentioned. 16. Other rivers Abella cited as being “notable” but of “minor importance” are (flowing to the south): the Salog or Jaro, the Sibálom de Iloilo, the Tumagboc, the Uyungan, the Siuaragan, the Bacauan, the Bayonan, the Tiolas, the Lauigan, and the Hibog; and (flowing to the north): the Tangalan, the Jalo, the Agbalili, the Ivisan, and the Ibajay. 17. The mountain, the only one in Panay to be renamed, honors Fr. Fernando Llorente, O.S.A., an Augustinian friar who was assigned at that time as parish priest of the large interior town of Janíuay, near the Panay cordillera, where he designed the widely-acclaimed cemetery; he also supervised the construction of the parish churches in Dingle (1865) and Dumangas (1887) in Iloilo. Fr. Llorente extended invaluable assistance to the Abella expedition in terms of providing indispensable guides, interpreters, porters and other support personnel; see note 51. below. 18. The important tributaries of the Jalaur river mentioned by Abella are: the Alibunan, the Ulian, the Abangay, the Suague, the Janipaan, the Lamunang, and the Asisig. 19. Important tributaries of the Panay river mentioned by Abella include: the Malitbug, the Badbaran, the Maayon, and the Mambusao. 20. Important tributaries of the Aclan river mentioned by Abella include: the Dumalaylay, the Tigbaban, the Bulabod, the Malinao, the Pangpangon, the Calangcan, the Jalo, and the Macato. 21. The Guía Oficial de Filipinas was published in Manila by Establecimiento Tipog. de Ramirez y Giraudier for the years 1879, 1884, 1885 and 1886; by Tipo-Litografía de Chofré y Compania for the years from 1889 to 1892; and (with the title changed to Guía Oficial de las Islas Filipinas) by the Secretaría del Gobierno General for the years from 1893 to 1898. 22. Estadistica de la población o censo general de las diversas razas. 23. Noteworthy in the study is that, based on comparisons with previous population counts, the increase in population in the diocese of Jaro in Iloilo, which included the island of Panay in its jurisdiction, was a “sombroso” (astonishing) increase of 2.724% annually. 24. In 1876, the population of the non-Christian groups, comprising diferentes castas de monteses (idolatras) y malayos mahometanos, was placed at 602,853 throughout the Philippines, out of a total population estimated at 6,173,632. In the 1876 census there were also, throughout the Philippines, 30,797 Chinese; and 38,608 Spaniards, of whom more than half were serving with the military or the civil administration. 25. For a fuller picture of the economies of Iloilo, Panay and Negros around this period, see Alfred McCoy op cit. 26. Isabel Rábano, “Encuentros y desencuentros con la metrópoli: la Inspección General de Minas de las islas Filipinas y sus ingenieros”, in Illes i Imperis, Vol. 22, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona, 2020. A table lists the names of those who served and their corresponding length of service. 27. Manuel Artigas y Cuerva, Galeria de Filipinos Ilustres: Biografías á contar desde las primeros tiempos de la dominación hispana, de los hijos del país que en sus respectivas profesiones descollaron ó hayan alcanzado algun puesto de distinción en Sociedad, Imp. Casa Editora “Renacimiento”, Kiapo, Manila, 1917. 28. Isabel Rábano, “Minas, mapas y mando. Enrique Abella y Casariego (1847-1913), geología y política en España y Filipinas”, in Llull, Vol. 43 (No. 87), Universidad de Zaragoza, 2020. 29. Rábano “Encuentros” op cit. 30. See the various thoughtful articles in “Ciencia e Ingenieria en Filipinas a Fines del Siglo XIX”, Illes I Imperis, Vol. 22, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona, 2020; 62

31. V.M. de Abella had a strong attachment to the Philippines and was a leading member of the Real Sociedad Económica Filipina de Amigos del País. He wrote several Spanish-Tagalog dictionaries, including a manual on colloquial conversations with a vocabulary of Manileño idioms: Vade-mecum filipino o manual de la conversación familiar Español-Tagalog. Seguido de un curioso Vocabulario de Modismos Manileños, Imprenta de los Amigos del País, Manila, 1869. He also wrote “a very useful book for everyone who owns and cares for fighting cocks”: Manual nang sasabungin en castellano y tagalog. Libro de suma utilidad a todo el que tenga y cuide gallos de pelea, Imprenta de la R. Mercantil de J. de Loyzaga y Cª., Manila, 1878. 32. Abella’s mother was Romualda Casariego y Prado. As well as his two elder brothers, who served with

the military in the Philippines, he also had a younger brother and a sister.

33. Ordaz “Datos acerca” op cit. 34. José Centeno García, Memoria geológico-minera de las Islas Filipinas, Imprenta y Fundición de Manuel Tello, Madrid, 1876. 35. For a discussion of the tensions between the Jesuits and the mining engineers, see Aitor Anduaga, Cyclones & Earthquakes: The Jesuits, Prediction, Trade, & Spanish Dominion in Cuba & the Philippines, 1850-1898, Ateneo de Manila University Press, Quezon City, 2017. 36. Abella associated himself with the conservative ideas of General Polavieja, and in 1898 in Madrid he published Filipinas, a work which criticized the independence societies that operated under the cover of Freemasonry. 37. Abella Panay op cit. 38. José Antonio Rodríguez Esteban and Alicia Campos Serrano, “El Cartógrafo Enrique d’Almonte, en la Encrucijada del Colonialismo Español de Asia y África, in Scripta Nova, Vol. XXII No. 586, Universitat de Barcelona, 2018. Quirós 39. Francisco Quirós Linares, “Dos geógrafos españoles en el ’noventa y ocho’: Gonzalo de Reparaz y Enrique d’Almonte”, in Ería, Vol. 46, Universidad de Oviedo, 1998. 40. José Antonio Rodríguez Esteban, “Cartografia Española en Filipinas, Fin de Siglo”, in Illes I Imperis, Vol. 22, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona, 2020. 41. Enrique Abella, Plano topográfico de la Isla de Cebú: 42. Rodriguez Esteban “Cartografia” op cit. 43. Rodriguez Esteban and Campos Serrano, op cit. 44. Rodriguez Esteban and Campos Serrano op cit, citing Luis Cubillo, “D’Almonte, geógrafo y cartógrafo” in España y América, Año XVI, Tomo III,1918.

45. John Bach, “Philippine Maps from the Time of Magellan”, in The Military Engineer, Vol. XXII, No.124, Society of American Military Engineers, 1930.

46. José Algué S.J. / United States Coast and Geodetic Survey, Atlas de Filipinas, Government Printing Office, Washington D.C., 1900. 47. Panay Military District No. 4 was published as one of the maps attached to the Report of Maj. Gen. E.S. Otis, United States Army, Commanding Division of the Philippines, Military Governor, September 1, 1899, to May 5, 1900, Government Printing Office, Washington D.C., 1900. 48. Warren du Pré Smith, Geology and Mineral Resources of the Philippine Islands, Bureau of Science, Manila, 1924. 49. Warren du Pré Smith, “Geographical Work in the Philippines”, in The Geographical Journal, Vol. 34, No. 5, The Royal Geographical Society, London, 1909. 50. A copy of the map is held in the H. Otley Beyer Map Collection at the National Library of Australia; 51. Abella Panay op cit: En recuerdo a los auxilios que presto a nuestros trabajos el R. P. Fr. Fernando Llorente, cura de Janiuay, ponemos a este monte, un nombre nuevo, siendo esta la unica excepcion que hacemos a nuestro proposito de no alterar los que encontramos mas conocidos y generalizados, aunque muchos sean improprios de la indole de lengua castellana.


The Geography of Panay Island Then and Now by Rosalyn D. Sontillanosa & Efren P. Carandang


HIS article examines changes in the geography of Panay Island by comparing Enrique Abella y Casariego’s 1890 map Isla de Panay – Bosquejo Geologico with more recent maps, satellite images and other sources of information. Three topographic maps at a scale of 1 : 250,000, published by the National Mapping and Resource Information Authority (NAMRIA), were mosaicked to serve as a major basis of comparison. Panay is the sixth largest island in the Philippines, with a land area of 10,692.47 square kilometers. Located in the Western Visayas Region, it is bounded on the north by the province of Romblon, on the southeast by the islands of Guimaras and Negros, and on the west by the Sulu Sea. The island used to be made up of only three provinces, namely Capiz, Iloilo and Antique, but on April 25, 1956 Aklan was separated from Capiz and established as a fourth province through Republic Act No. 1414, with its provincial capital at Kalibo. The first thing that any modern-day cartographer will notice when comparing the Bosquejo with current maps is the difference of more than three degrees in longitude ticks. This means that when mapped using Geographic Information System (GIS) software, the Bosquejo and the current topographic map of Panay are located exactly 408.20 kilometers apart from each other. This is because early Spanish maps used the Madrid Prime Meridian, while current maps use the Greenwich Prime Meridian in London, 3⁰41’21’’ east of Madrid. The Bosquejo is a colored map that is admired for its artistry, technical details and accuracy. The map’s legend shows the symbols used for topography (Signos Topográficos) and geology (Signos Geológicos). As discussed by the American geologist Warren Smith,(1) Abella’s Descripción Física, Geológica y Minera en Bosquejo (2) described in detail the general geologic features of Panay, including orography, hydrography, volcanic formation, sedimentary formation, and economic geology.

Abella’s book also reported the presence of metals, non-metals, petroleum, and serpentine containing asbestiform. The presence of such mineral resources has been confirmed by the later studies of geologists such as G.W. Corby,(3) P.J. Santos,(4) and R.A. Tamayo, et al.(5) In 2015, the Mines and Geosciences Bureau published a list of potential mineral resources in the Western Visayas showing that in Panay most of the minerals are located in the Western Cordillera. Incidentally, the province of Antique now has a flourishing gemstone industry. Topography and Geology Despite the limitations posed by its 1 : 200,000 scale, the Bosquejo represents in great detail the topography of the mountains, ridges, valleys, plains, caves, rivers, deltas, road systems and coastal areas, as well as administrative boundaries and geographical names. Although it does not contain contour lines, it effectively uses artistic shading to visualize the relief of the landforms. As to geology, the map depicts three major classes, namely: rocas hipogénicas (hypogenic rocks), rocas terciarias y calizas (tertiary limestones), and aluviones (alluvium), represented by varying hues of brown, yellow and orange. Hypogenic rocks are minerals formed through hypogene deposition processes which include crystallization from hot aqueous solutions rising to the earth’s crust. The Bosquejo established that the Western and Eastern Cordilleras of Panay are made up of such rocks. Relatedly, recent data from the Philippine Institute for Volcanology and Seismology indicate that the West Panay Fault runs along the Western Cordillera, starting from the northern part of Aklan all the way down to San Joaquin in Iloilo. Between the two Cordilleras lies a generally flat area made up of tertiary limestones which, according to Smith, are the dominant rocks in Panay. Tertiary limestones are sedimentary rocks formed primarily from calcium carbonate, usually in the form of calcite.


One factor that has caused flooding in river deltas is the radical alteration of the landscape due to human activities. A case in point is the Tinagong Dagat inlet in Pontevedra, Capiz, where the lake and river delta are heavily silted due to the presence of numerous fishponds and dikes that hamper the flow of floodwaters through the natural waterways.

2015 Land Cover Map of Panay Island (image courtesy of NAMRIA)

Alluviums are materials deposited by rivers, consisting of silt, sand, clay and gravel, forming floodplains and deltas along their courses. Alluviums are found in the coastal areas of Aklan, Capiz and Iloilo. NAMRIA classified these areas in its 2015 Land Cover Map of Panay as marshlands, fishponds and inland waters, aptly matching the geological classification in the Bosquejo. During the passage of tropical depressions Urduja (December 14, 2017) and Agaton (January 3, 2018), the towns of Numancia, Banga and Malinao in Aklan, and of Sigma, Mambusao, Panitan, Panay and Dumarao in Capiz, suffered from flash floods. These areas were all part of the aluviones shown in the Bosquejo, but perhaps floods and other geological hazards were not yet common at the end of the 19th century. Otherwise, a derivative map that could have been produced from the Bosquejo’s excellent topographic details would have been a geohazard map similar to the one produced by the DENR’s Mines and Geosciences Bureau in 2014 in which the alluvial plains identified in the Bosquejo are shown to be highly susceptible to flooding.


In 1973, the Bureau of Soils and Water Management published an improved version of the geological map of Panay that shows in greater detail the three major rock classifications and their sub-groups. In 1981, a joint study by the Philippine Atomic Energy Commission and the Bureau of Mines (6) was conducted to assess the uranium potential of Panay. Based on the results of the study, the igneous and metamorphic rocks in the Western and Eastern Cordillera were found to be possible host rocks for uranium. Preliminary Detailed Geohazard Map of the Municipality of Panay, Province of Capiz (2014) (image courtesy of Department of Environment and Natural Resources, Mines and Geosciences Bureau)

When compared to the Bosquejo, the current maps of mainland Panay show differences in coastal configuration, understandably because of the relatively crude mapping methods employed in the late-19th century, the results of natural processes, and anthropogenic impacts. However, the changes in the shape of the surrounding islands are more pronounced, as in the cases of the islands of Burácay (Boracay), Batbatán and Maralison (Mararison). Geographical Names It is remarkable that most of the old names for the towns in all of the provinces of Panay are preserved today, except for the following: Changes in toponyms in Panay from 1890 Province

Old name

Name today

Antique Aklan

Dao Calivo -Macato Navas Lucena Capiz --

Tobias Fornier Kalibo New Washington* Makato Nabas New Lucena Roxas City** President Roxas*

Iloilo Capiz

Conclusions The Isla De Panay – Bosquejo Geologico stands out for its technical and artistic merits, a rare feat at the time it was published. It captured in great detail the physical environment and an important part of the history of Panay when the Philippine archipelago was about to be ceded to the United States by the Kingdom of Spain. The technical integrity of the map has withstood the test of time, and it became a valuable resource for the next generations of geologists and resource managers. Indeed, Don Enrique Abella y Casariego and his colleague in the Inspección General de Minas de las islas Filipinas, Don Enrique D’Almonte y Muriel, represent that rare breed of researchers, surveyors and cartographers whose body of work continues to inspire even in this age of space-mapping technology. This article is based on the presentation “A Look at the Past and Present Topography and Natural Resources of Panay” given to PHIMCOS by Efren Carandang, Deputy Administrator of the National Mapping and Resource Information Authority (NAMRIA) on November 7, 2018.

* new municipality ** provincial capital

Geology of Panay Island (1973) (image courtesy of Bureau of Soils and Water Management and Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations)


Panay Island Then and Now Tinagong Dagat, Pontevedra, Capiz

The island of Boracay

The islands of Batbatan and Mararison

Left: details from Isla de Panay – Bosquejo Geologico by Enrique Abella (1890) (image courtesy of Biblioteca Nacional de España); right: satellite images from Google Earth, Imagery ©2021 TerraMetrics References 1. Warren D. Smith, “Notes on the Geology of Panay”, in The Philippine Journal of Science, Vol. X, No.3, Bureau of Printing, Manila, 1915. 2. Enrique Abella y Casariego, Descripción Física, Geológica y Minera en Bosquejo de la Isla de Panay, Tipo-Litografía de Chofré y Compania, Escolta, Manila, 1890. 3. Grant W. Corby et al, Geology and Oil Possibilities of the Philippines, Department of Agriculture and Natural Resources Technical Bulletin No. 21, Manila, 1951. 4. Perfecto J. Santos, “Geology and Section Measurements in Iloilo Basin, Panay Island, Philippines”, in The Philippine Geologist, Vol. XXII, No. 1, Mandaluyong City, 1968. 5. Rodolfo A. Tamayo, et al., “Petrochemical Investigation of the Antique Ophiolite (Philippines): Implications on Volcanogenic Massive Sulfide and Podiform Chromitite Deposits”, in Resource Geology, Vol. 51, No. 2, 2001. 6. G. Santos, Jr. et al., Panay carborne radiometric and geochemical surveys, PAEC(C)IB--81012, 1981. 68

Planning Iloilo City by Peter Geldart


HE CITY OF ILOILO, the provincial capital of the eponymous province, has the largest population of any local government unit on the island of Panay. According to the Provincial Government’s official website: [The city] takes its name from Irong-Irong, the old name of the city of Iloilo, a tongue of land that sticks out like a nose on the south of Iloilo River. The Maragtas Legend (1) tells the story of Iloilo way back in the 13th century, when Datu Puti and his fellow Datus fled from the tyranny of Sultan Makatunao of Borneo and landed at the mouth of the Siwaragan River, now known as the town of San Joaquin, and eventually settled there.(2)

In 1566 Miguel López de Legazpi moved his headquarters from Cebu to Panay and established a garrison at a location between La Villa Rica de Arévalo (so named in 1581 and today a district of Iloilo City) and the village of Ogtong (Oton), 11 kilometres to the west of the city. Alfred McCoy summarises the early history of the new settlement thus:(3)

At the time of Spanish contact in the 1560s the Ilonggos had a highly developed material civilization and were already skilled weavers. During its first century of colonial settlement the Iloilo urban area served largely as an administrative centre and naval dockyard for Spanish campaigns of conquest. In 1571 the Spanish established a permanent garrison in the villages of Arevalo and Oton, now suburbs of Iloilo City, and later opened a shipyard to construct galleys for their expeditions to the Moluccas. Writing in the 1590s, the Spanish official Antonio de Morga (4) reported that Oton had "many natives who are masters in building all kinds of ships" and nearby Guimaras was "thickly populated by natives all of whom are highly skilled carpenters". After the Dutch razed Arevalo in 1618, the region's urban centre shifted a few kilometres east to the village of Iloilo where the major anchorage was located and there were “more than 100 Chinese married to native women". Iloilo remained a missionary and administrative centre until the mid-18th century.

Plan de la Fuerza de Yloylo de la Provincia de Oton, 1739 (image courtesy of Archivo Museo Naval de Madrid) 69

The settlements at Oton, Arevalo and Iloilo were all vulnerable to attack by Moro pirates and European enemies, especially the Dutch.(5) To protect the coast and the entrance to the Iloilo river, from 1603 to 1616 the Spanish built the Fortificación de Nuestra Señora del Rosario, later known as Fort San Pedro. This was a substantial square fortification with four angular bastions, built of stone brought from the coast of Panay and from Guimaras.(6) A plan of the fort, Plan de la Fuerza de Yloylo de la Provincia de Oton, was published in 1739 in a book on fortifications in the Philippines commissioned by the Governor-General, Fernando Valdés Tamón.(7) As well as details of the fort itself with its four baluartes (bastions), the map shows La Casa Real (Royal House), the provincial seat of government; the Casa del Alcalde Mayor (house of the provincial governor); storerooms for building works and ships’ stores; houses; and, across a small bridge, the Vario de los Panpangos.(8) By the turn of the 19th century the town had expanded but was still small, as shown in a manuscript chart from the 1789-94 expedition to South America and the Philippines led by Alessandro Malaspina. Drawn in 1805 by José Felipe de Ynciarte from the survey undertaken by Juan Díaz Maqueda, the expedition’s Primer Piloto (Master), the Plano del Canal formado entre las Yslas Panay y Guimaras o el fondeadero de Ilo-Ilo en Filipinas (9) indicates a number of buildings, with lines of houses extending to the west and northwest of the Castillo del Rosario. Detail from Juan Díaz Maqueda’s Plano del Canal formado entre las Yslas Panay y Guimaras … (image courtesy of Archivo Museo Naval de Madrid)


As well as being a centre for administration, military garrison and base for missionary work, by the first half of the 19th century Iloilo had developed a considerable reputation for its weaving industry. The Frenchman Jean Mallat, who visited in the early 1840s, wrote: The province of Iloilo is also renowned for its cloth called sinamays and piña …; the combination of their designs and colours is so bright and varied that they have the admiration of the whole world. … [The better weaves] have an admirable beauty which is impossible to imitate in Europe because the cost of production would be prohibitive.(10)

A manuscript Spanish Navy chart dated 1830, Plano del Rio de Yloylo,(11) shows that the town had expanded significantly. Oriented to the southeast, the map has a lettered key showing the Baluarte en la Costa Sur (south coast bastion), La Fuerza (fort), and the Cuartel de Artilleros (gunners’ barracks). More than 60 houses have been built to the south of the Iglesia (church) and Casa Real, and nearly 100 more houses stretch along the Camino de Jaro and other roads leading northwards past the Arsenal on the river bank. A canalizo (small canal) links the Casa Real with the Arsenal, built through the Manglar anegadizo (mangrove swamps), which also fill the bay to the north of the fort. Lines of soundings in pies de Burgos are shown across the river’s mouth and, upstream, along both banks and the middle of the river, with the bottom indicated by P for piedra (stone), A for arena (sand) or, without indication, fango (mud).

Plano del Rio de Yloylo by naval lieutenant Don José Atienza, 1830 (image courtesy of Biblioteca Nacional de España)

Perhaps the most important commercial development for the town was in 1855 when Manila lost its exclusive right to handle international trade and the port of Iloilo was opened to foreign commerce: On 31 July, 1856 the new British vice­consul, Mr. Nicholas Loney, landed at Iloilo to begin a 13-year residence in the city that was to have a major impact on-the region's economy. As commercial agent for British and American firms, Loney dedicated himself to the promotion of cheap British cottons as a substitute for Ilonggo productions and the encouragement of sugar production [in Negros] as a return cargo – in short, the extension of Manchester's trading sphere to the Visayas. The shift from textile to sugar exports had a profound impact on almost every aspect of [the town’s] economic and social organization. … While Negros produced the sugar, Iloilo City performed all of the industry's support

functions. Banks, social clubs, warehouses, machine shops, printing presses, retail shops, commercial firms, educational institutions and medical services were only to be found in the city.(12)

Because of its economic development and status as the most important commercial port in the Philippines after Manila, on 5 October, 1889 Iloilo was made a City by Royal Decree. A manuscript plan of the city dated 1 March, 1893, Plano general de la ciudad de Yloilo, shows the city in great detail at a scale of 1 : 2000.(13) As well as the streets and municipal buildings, the plan also locates and names the owners of some 443 private houses, including those owned by Norberta Laureano Almonte,(14) the mother of the photographer Felix Laureano who photographed and described the town’s docks, bridges, sugar warehouses, “magnificent houses of wooden board and galvanized iron”, and “wide street[s], straight and level”.(15)


Plano general de la ciudad de Yloilo, su término y ría proyectado por Dn. Antonio Domenech de Toldra, 1893 (image courtesy of Biblioteca Nacional de España)

When the Philippine Revolution broke out in 1896, the Ilonggo elite were outraged and proclaimed their undying loyalty to Spain. Backed by the Spanish and foreign communities of Iloilo, a battalion of native volunteers was raised, under mostly Spanish officers, to join the government forces fighting in Cavite against Emilio Aguinaldo’s Katipunan troops. They returned to Iloilo in April 1898, and the loyalty of the Ilonggos was honoured by the Spanish Queen Regent Maria Cristina who bestowed on the city the title of Muy Noble (Most Noble) in a Royal Decree dated 1 March, 1898.(16) At the start of the Philippine-American War Iloilo briefly became the capital of the Spanish Philippines, but on 24 December, 1898 the last Spanish Governor-General, Diego de los Ríos y Nicolau, surrendered the city to the nationalist general Martín Teófilo Delgado, who raised the Filipino flag. U.S. army and naval forces then occupied the city on 11 February, 1899, and a “combination of arson, naval bombardment and street fighting” left Iloilo a "blackened ruin".(17) Under American administration Iloilo lost its status as a city, to be regained only in July 1937; but the Census of the Philippine Islands in 1903 showed the town was still one of the largest in the Philippines, with a population of 19,054. In the early 20th century the town thrived: 72

The period under the Americans up to the Commonwealth witnessed the continuous growth of Iloilo City as the commercial and cultural capital of Southern Philippines. It increasingly set the pace in cultural activities and became the entertainment capital of the Visayas. It was also the hub of various big business ventures. The prosperous years before World War II brought about a building boom in the wake of an unprecedented rise in sugar prices. All over the city and in the more prosperous municipalities, two-storey and even threestorey structures mushroomed. … Apart from the governmental, commercial and residential buildings there were recreational facilities: movie houses, sports facilities, cabarets, clubs, etc. … The "golden era" in the 1920s and early 1930s became the high-water mark in the history of Iloilo City, when she was recognized as the "Queen City of the South”.(18)

A plan of the town from this era can be seen in an inset of the Iloilo River Surveyed in 1914, from a chart of Iloilo Strait and Harbour (19) published by the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey in 1919, reissued at Manila in 1922 (with small corrections to 1925). A notable addition to the Spanish plan of 1893 is the baseball ground, located on reclaimed mangrove swampland to the northeast of the church.

suburbs, the establishment of a suburban prison, farms, and cemetery, plus a large elliptical-shaped park laid out immediately north of the Iloilo River. A civic core and exposition grounds, respectively situated north and south of the river, were also evident in the scheme.(22)

Other new buildings proposed in Juan Arellano’s plan include a railroad station, a hangar for Iloilo’s airport, a relocated animal quarantine station, a library and museum, a municipal building, a new market site, a custom house, and the provincial capitol building. The site of the former baseball ground has become the wireless station, with two baseball grounds and track & field facilities shown north of the river.

Iloilo River Surveyed in 1914, U.S.C. & G.S.,1919 (image courtesy of United States Office of Coast Survey)

In 1901 the pioneering architect Arcadio Arellano had become the first Filipino to be employed by the American colonial government as an architectural advisor. In 1919 he produced a plan for the redevelopment of the city of Tayabas that was: … seen as the opening act of a new planning narrative: one determined from 1919 by Filipino rather than American actors. … From 1919 to 1935 city planning by Filipinos [employed in the Bureau of Public Works’ Division of Architecture] took on a number of forms. These included comprehensive city planning, zoning planning, the designing of new civic districts, and the revitalizing of Spanish colonial plazas.(20)

Arcadio died in 1920 but his younger brother, the architect Juan Marcos Arellano, produced a plan for Iloilo titled Proposed Development Plan of the City of Iloilo and Vicinity.(21) First issued in 1926, at a scale of 1 : 10,000, the plan was revised in September 1928, June 1929 and October 1930. In the 1930 plan, Arellano’s fourth version of the scheme, Iloilo’s built environment was characterized by its riverbank development, an urban sprawl incorporating once isolated villages, a major arterial boulevard about the

The economy of the city declined during the 1930s and stagnated during World War II after the Japanese invaded Panay in 1942; “during the war many Negros centrals were destroyed and much of the Iloilo waterfront was levelled by Japanese bombing”.(23) Towards the end of the American campaign of liberation, in early March, 1945, Japanese positions in and around Iloilo City were bombed by combined U.S. Air Force and Navy forces in preparation for the U.S. landings in Panay and liberation of the city by Filipino and American forces on 25 March. The infrastructure of the city was heavily damaged, and Fort San Pedro, occupied by Japanese forces, was destroyed.(24) After the war Iloilo could not retain its position as the second city of the Philippines: A series of paralyzing strikes by a labor union in the city's waterfront, starting in the 1930s, and the subsequent bloody confrontations with a rival group immediately after the war, caused many of the commercial firms, especially the foreign ones, to abandon Iloilo City and to transfer their operations to Manila and Cebu. This was aggravated by the fact that, after the war, Negros sugar planters and exporters no longer shipped their sugar to Iloilo because of the demand for higher wages by the union workers and the radical restructuring of the sugar industry.(25)

Today, Iloilo City is a thriving urban metropolis with a population of 447,992 according to the 2015 Census.


Proposed Development Plan of the City of Iloilo and Vicinity by Juan Marcos Arellano (from the H. Otley Beyer Map Collection; image courtesy of National Library of Australia)

Notes & references The author thanks Raphael P.M. Lotilla for his assistance in writing this article, and in particular for providing the information on the 1893 Plano general de la ciudad de Yloilo and the residents of the town shown therein, which were brought to his attention by Nereo C. Lujan, Provincial Information Officer of Iloilo Province. 1.

Pedro Alcantara Monteclaro, Maragtás kon (historia) sg pulô nga Panay kutub sg iya una nga pamuluyö tubtub sg pag-abut sg mga taga Borneo nga amó ang ginhalinan sg mga bisayâ kag sg pag-abut sg mga Katsilâ (History of Panay from the first inhabitants and the Bornean immigrants, from which they descended, to the arrival of the Spaniards), El Tiempo Press, Iloilo, 1907.


See Provincial Government of Iloilo:


Alfred McCoy, “A Queen Dies Slowly: The Rise and Decline of Iloilo City”, in Philippine Social History: Global Trade and Local Transformations, Alfred W. McCoy & Ed. C. de Jesus (eds), Ateneo de Manila University Press, Quezon City, 1982.


Antonio de Morga, Sucesos de las Jslas Filipinas, Geronymo Balli, Mexico, 1609; translation from Emma Helen Blair and James Alexander Robertson, The Philippine Islands, 1493-1803, The Arthur H. Clark Company, Cleveland, Ohio, 1903-09, Vols. XV & XVI.


But also the English. In early 1588 the explorer and privateer Sir Thomas Cavendish unsuccessfully attempted to burn and destroy the galleon Santiago, which was nearing completion in the yards at Arevalo; see William Lytle Schurz, The Manila Galleon, E.P. Dutton & Company, Inc., New York, 1939.



See Explore Iloilo:


Fernando Valdés Tamón, Relación en que de orden de su Magestad Cathólica (Dios le guarde) se declaran las Plazas, Castillos, Fuerzas, y Presidios de las Provincias sugetas a su Real Dominio en las Yslas Philipinas: Con Delineación de sus Planos y Demonstraciones puntuales de los Pertrechos y Gente de Guerra, Sueldos, Raciones y Municiones para su manutención, Manila, 1739.


Presumably the barrio (quarter) of the soldiers from Pampanga. The Spanish colonial army in the Philippines employed large numbers of indigenous troops; in particular, indios from the province of Pampanga “formed a professional military grouping that garrisoned the presidios of the archipelago”. See: Stephanie Mawson, “Philippine Indios in the Service of Empire: Indigenous Soldiers and Contingent Loyalty, 1600–1700” in Ethnohistory Vol. 63, Issue 2, Duke University Press, 2016.


Archivo del Museo Naval (AMN); see

10. Jean-Baptiste Mallat de Bassilan, Les Philippines: histoire, géographie, moeurs, agriculture, industrie et commerce des colonies espagnoles dans l'Océanie, Arthus Bertrand, Paris, 1846; quoted in McCoy op cit. 11. Plano del Rio de Yloylo Levantado Por la División destinada al Sur de Visayas mandada por el Alferez de Navio de la Real Armada Don José Atienza. Año de 1830; Biblioteca Nacional de España (BNE); see 12. McCoy op cit. 13. Plano general de la ciudad de Yloilo, su término y ría proyectado por Dn. Antonio Domenech de Toldra y dedicado al Excmo Sr. Dn. Antonio Maura, Ministro de Ultramar; Biblioteca Nacional de España (BNE); see 14. Norverta (sic) Laureano is listed as owning No. 36 Calle de Yznart, No. 1 Calle de los Remedios and No. 31 Muelle Loney; Felix’s brother, Santiago, is listed as owning No. 19 Calle Real and No. 1 Calle de Aldeguer. 15. Felix Laureano, Recuerdos de Filipinas: Álbum-libro, A Tool for the Study and Understanding of the Ways and Customs of these Islands with 37 Phototypies Taken and Copied from Real Life, edited by Felice Noelle Rodriguez and Ramon C. Sunico, translated by Felice Noelle Rodriguez and Renan Prado, Cacho Publishing House, Mandaluyong, 2001. 16. Policarpo F. Hernández, O.S.A., Iloilo, the Most Noble City: History and Development 1566-1898, New Day Publishers, Quezon City, 2008. In its coat of arms, the City of Iloilo uses the motto La Muy Leal [Loyal] y Noble Ciudad de Iloilo 1890; it was in 1890 that the city government was established, following the Queen Regent’s Royal Decree of 5 October, 1889 which granted Iloilo the title of Ciudad (City). 17. Brian McAllister Linn, The Philippine War 1899-1902, University Press of Kansas, 2000. 18. Henry F. Funtecha, “The Making of a ‘Queen City’: The Case of Iloilo 1890s-1930s”, in Philippine Quarterly of Culture and Society, Vol. 20, No. 2/3, University of San Carlos Publications, Cebu City, 1992. 19. Historical Map & Chart Collection, Office of Coast Survey, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce; see 20. Ian Morley, Tayabas: The First Filipino City Beautiful Plan, 18th International Planning History Society Conference, Yokohama, July 2018. 21. A blueprint copy of the plan is held in the H. Otley Beyer Map Collection at the National Library of Australia; see 22. Morley op cit. 23. McCoy op cit. 24. Photograph in the collection of John Tewell; see 25. Funtecha op cit; see also McCoy op cit.


PHIMCOS Board of Trustees 2021 Mariano Cacho, Jr. Honorary Chairman Emeritus

Jaime C. González President

Lisa Ongpin Periquet Vice President

Margarita V. Binamira Secretary

Vincent S. Pérez Treasurer

Andoni F. Aboitiz Trustee

Edwin R. Bautista Trustee

Raphael P.M. Lotilla Trustee

Hans B. Sicat Trustee

PHIMCOS Members Individual members Andoni F. Aboitiz

Margarita V. Binamira

William Brandenburg

Robin Bridge

Mariano Cacho, Jr.

Julian Candiah*

Jan Mikael David

Leovino Ma. Garcia

Michael A. Gibb

Ian Gill

Richard Jackson

Jaime C. Laya

Elizabeth Lietz

Rudolf J.H. Lietz

Raphael P.M. Lotilla

José L. Mabilangan

Gonzalo Mac-Crohon

Carlos Madrid

Francisco Romero Milán

Jorge Mojarro

Alberto Montilla

Juan José Morales*

Ambeth Ocampo

Maria Isabel Ongpin

Christian Perez

Vincent S. Pérez

Lisa Ongpin Periquet

Daniele Quaggiotto

Dieter Reichert

Alfredo Roca

Felice Noelle Rodriguez*

Emmanuel A. Ticzon

William-Alain Miailhe de Burgh

William Valtos, Jr.*

Jonathan Wattis

Joint members Angelica & Edwin R. Bautista

Marinela & Maria Paz K. Fabella

Ernestine D. Villareal-Fernando & Marcelo Cordero Fernando Jr. Ma. Fedeliz & Peter Geldart Felice & Andres Sta. Maria

Marie Constance Y. & Jaime C. González

Amb. Junever Mahilum-West & John Robert West* Corporate members

Calamian Islands Corp. (nominees: Carlos R. Araneta & Janet T. Ong) Legispro Corp. (nominees: Hans B. Sicat & Regina F. Sicat) Ortigas Foundation, Inc. (nominees: Jonathan Best & Beatriz V. Lalana)

* new members PHIMCOS Committee Members Communications Committee

Education Committee

Finance Committee

Membership Committee

Margarita V. Binamira*

Andoni F. Aboitiz*

Vincent S. Pérez*

Hans B. Sicat*

Peter Geldart*

Edwin R. Bautista*

Jaime C. González

Lisa Ongpin Periquet

Christian Perez

Jaime C. Laya

Hans B. Sicat

Alfredo Roca

Emmanuel A. Ticzon

* Chair / Co-Chair * Editor, The Murillo Bulletin 76

Regina F. Sicat

Paulus Swaen

40 years of map selling excellence internet map auctions February - March - April - May - June - September - October - November

online gallery at : TEL : CLEARWATER, USA : +1 727 697 3298

Plano de la Isla de Panay by Don Santiago de Salaverria (1797) (image courtesy of Archivo Museo Naval de Madrid, retouched by Ruben Canlas, Jr.)

©PHIMCOS 2021. All Rights Reserved. Printed by Primex Printers, Inc. Mandaluyong City, Philippines

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