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Chapter 4: The Spanish Era (Part 1)

1. In Search of New Lands

 15th and 16th centuries brought an era of worldwide exploration and expansion that resulted from the desire to gain new
lands, power, and wealth for the explorers and their countries.
 Spices were among the most important items of trade from the east.
 Spain and Portugal led the way in discovering new trade routes. They were rivals in colonizing new lands.
 Inter caetera and Treaty of Tordesillas were papal bulls setting demarcations on zone explorations between the two
 Ferdinand Magellan (1480-1521)
o A Portuguese proposed to the King his plan to travel a westward route to the Mollucas.
o He was turned down and sought support from Spain, Portugal’s main rival.
o He wanted to prove his claim that the world is round.

2. Magellan’d New Route to the East

 5 Ships of Magellan’s Voyage
o Trinidad
o Concepcion
o Santiago
o San Antonio
o Victoria
 Magellan’s expedition suffered great setbacks.
 Santiago was destroyed by typhoon while San Antonio deserted the expedition leaving him with 3 ships.
 They also run out of supplies and experienced sickness which led to the death of his crew.
 They arrived in Islas Ladrones (Marianas) on March 6, 1521 before arriving in Samar.

3. Voyage to the Philippines

 On March 16, 1521, Magellan’s fleet arrived at Samar and named it the Islas de San Lazaro (Island of St. Lazarus).
 Confusion on the site of the first mass. There are two contending views as to where the site of the first mass in the
archipelago transpired, one claims it was Limasawa (Leyte), and another Masao (Butuan).
Limasawa Masao
Supported by the National Historical Presented by Dr. Sonia Zaide
Institute (NHI)
Based on Carlo Amoretti’s evidence stating Zaide presented arguments such as all
that Mazaua and Limasawa are one and the primary sources such as that of Pigafetta
same. mentions Mazaua. LImasawa has 54 syllables
and begins with another letter; the
inconsistencies in the distance as mentioned
in all primary sources; the presence of
balanghai in Butuan, a vessel used by kings
during that time; and the congruence with
the description form primary sources that the
place was rich in gold.
Supported by Pablo Pastells, T. H. Pardo de Attested by Mafra accounts. Gines de Mafra
Tavera, Jayme de Veyra and James was the only person who has reached
Robertson Mazaua twice.
Supported by William Henry Scott and and
attested by the chronicle of Gian Batista

 When Magellan landed on Sugbu (Cebu) he made blood compact with Humabon after the Magellan won his trust and
friendship. Magellan taught Humabon and the Cebuanos the Christian teaching about honoring one’s parent.
 Although Magellan was accepted by Humabon and some other Cebuano leaders, Lapu-lapu another chieftain of Mactan
refused to accept the new political system and pay tribute.
 Lapu-lapu’s refusal led to the Battle of Mactan, where Magellan and his troops were defeated by the formers troops.
 The Battle of Mactan was a scandalous defeat for the Spaniards for they were not able to prove themselves better in
 Of his 3 ships, only Victoria was able to return back to Spain, after continuing its voyage to Moluccas. The ship was
captained by Sebastian del Cano.
 The voyage around the world lasted for 2 years, 11 months, and 16 days.
 The voyage enhanced their knowledge about the existence of other islands in the Pacific and the Philippines. It also
confirmed that the earth is round and that it is really possible to sail around the world since the world’s oceans are
 Some contentions that Enrique de Malaca circumnavigated the world first ahead of del Cano.
 Magellan’s expedition paved the way for Spain’s expansion to the Orient.
 After the Spain had celebrated Elcano’s return, King Charles I decided that Spain should conquer the Philippines. Five
subsequent expeditions were then sent to the Islands.

Spanish Expeditions after Magellan

Loaysa’s Expedition (1525) The first post-Magellan expedition composed of 7 ships and 450 men. The expedition failed to
reach the Philippines.
Cabot’s Expedition (1526) Composed of 4 ships and 250 men. Led by Sebastian Cabot. They failed to find the Strait of
The Saavedra Expedition (1527) Composed of 3 ships and 110 men, among its objective was to investigate what had happened
to the two earlier expeditions and rescue any survivors if there are any.
The Villalobos Expedition Composed of 6 ships and around 400 men. He followed the route taken by Magellan and
(1543) reached Mindanao on February 2, 1543. He established a colony in Sarangani but could not
stay long because of insufficient food supply. His fleet left the island and landed on Tidore in
the Moluccas, where they were captured by the Portuguese.

Villalobos is remembered for naming our country Islas Filipinas, in honor of King Charles’ son,
Prince Philip, who later became king of Spain.

The Legazpi Expedition (1564) The fleet consisted of 4 ships and 380 men. On February 13, 1565, Legaspi's expedition landed
in Cebu island. After a short struggle with the natives, he proceeded to Leyte, then to
Camiguin and to Bohol. There Legaspi made a blood compact with the chieftain, Datu Sikatuna
as a sign of friendship. Legaspi was able to obtain spices and gold in Bohol due to his
friendship with Sikatuna. On April 27, 1565, Legaspi returned to Cebu; destroyed the town of
Raja Tupas and establish a settlement. On orders of the King Philip II, 2,100 men arrived from
Mexico. They built the the port of Fuerza de San Pedro which became the Spanish trading
outpost and stronghold for the region.

His successful conquest was the start of the colonization of the archipelago for more than
three centuries.