PDF Archive

Easily share your PDF documents with your contacts, on the Web and Social Networks.

Send a file File manager PDF Toolbox Search Help Contact



Ealdama Monteses of Panay 1938 .pdf



Original filename: Ealdama Monteses of Panay 1938.pdf
Title: Philippine magazine

This PDF 1.4 document has been generated by Digitized by the Internet Archive / 3-Heights(TM) PDF Security Shell 4.5.24.6 (http://www.pdf-tools.com) / pdcat (www.pdf-tools.com), and has been sent on pdf-archive.com on 25/09/2016 at 17:44, from IP address 68.2.x.x. The current document download page has been viewed 348 times.
File size: 2.4 MB (24 pages).
Privacy: public file




Download original PDF file









Document preview


The Monteses

of

Panay

By Eugenio Ealdama

AS

a southbound boat approaches the

prising the southern quarter of the province

Island of Panay, the first to greet the

of Capiz, the slopes of the mountains that

traveler's eye are the stately ridges

separate Antique from Capiz, and the south-

that separate the three provinces of Antique,

ern slopes of the ridges that border the

into which the island is
mountain ranges, some
completely barren, others grassy, and the
rest forest-laden, suggest to the mind an
island of want instead of an "island of

province of Iloilo to the northwest.

Capiz, and

Iloilo,

These

divided.

The region
lands cut

namely: Panay, Jalauod, Aklan,
Tigum, Bugasong, and Ansuague, which furnish the water supply for the homes of the

Monteses along

These sturdy inhabitants of the mountains are known in Antique and Iloilo as
bukidnon, meaning "mountaineers", and in

tians".

rice

signifying "veryignorant".

are also

known

as

hills

clear-

or tablelands

and other products.

The settlements

remonta-

are principally

dos, the word being a Spanish participial
adjective derived from

the forest-covered

ed,

When

their banks.

furnish ample area for the cultivation of

they are referred to as "non-Chris-

They

and

rivers,

own.

Officially

low, forest-covered ridges

Baloy, situated due west from the center
of the island. From here run six main

humble



mundo,

broken and rough.

dotted here and there by a few peaks. One
of the largest and highest peaks is Mount

homes of a contented people a people
with customs and beliefs peculiarly their

Capiz as

by

is

the most part of small table-

It consists for

bread" as the name Panay is generally taken
to mean. Yet hidden among those mountains, nestled in the valleys, are the

of Capiz

the

remontar, which

of the Monteses in Capiz

within the jurisdiction

municipalities

and Libacao.

of

Jamindan,
a few miles west of

of Tapaz,

Just
Roxas, the nearest settlement or
From this sitio
sitio to be reached.
tados, as applied to a group of people, the gewgaws decreed by fashion
means those who have gone up to the mountains northward may be seen the bamboo and cogon huts
of the Monteses on the tops of many of the hills. One
to live. The name monteses, however, is the term
generally used. This word is a Spanish adjective derived
is not likely to meet a Christian Filipino within the exten-

means to "elevate"

from the word
signifies

Remon- a wealthy Montes woman with all Tapaz

or to "soar".

monte

"mountaineer", and

mean mundo and

Hence, montes
understood in Capiz to

or "mountain".
is

and Iloilo, bukidnon.
For the purpose of making a study of the life of these
people as an ethnic group and to collect specimens representing them, the author went to the mountains of Tapaz,
Capiz, Island of Panay, in May, 1931, and stayed a few
in Antique

days in the barrio of Da-an Norte.

In April of the follow-

ing year, he again visited the Monteses in Central Panay,

and made further investigation into

their customs

and

idiosyncracies in the three provinces of Antique, Capiz,

and Iloilo.
The time spent during these two
too short to enable the author to

visits

make an

was altogether

exhaustive study

and west.
Some three kilometers from Roxas the trail leads to a
ravine through which the Malinao River rushes eastward.
Along the bank of this river the traveler winds his way
sive territory to the north

upward to the west, some nine kilometers or so, until he
comes to the village of Da-an Norte. This village is situated on a small plain surrounded by low hills. There
are less than twenty houses on the site, amid which stand
the school building. Several huts may be seen on the tops
of the

Seem-

is

practically the same.
is

The

facts as presented in this

hoped, give a fair idea of the customs and

the general conditions prevalent

among

the Monteses of

that island.

Habitat and

Number

The present range of the Monteses of Panay covers the
mountainous portion of the central part of the island com24

nearby.
sitios

within the jurisdiction of Jamindan

in the

Aklan region (the northwestern half

of the province of Capiz) are situated farther

away

to the

north and west of Da-an Norte.

The estimated number of the Monteses

in

Capiz

is

about

15,000.

In Iloilo province, the Monteses live only in the mountains

ingly, however, the culture plane of the entire territory

paper should, it

hills

The other
and Libacao

of a people scattered in the mountains of the three provinces,

covering an area of several hundred square miles.

is

of Janiuay, Lambunao, and Calinog.
extensive as that in Capiz.

This region

It is estimated that

is

not as

not

less

than 3,000 Monteses live in these three municipalities.
In Antique the Monteses live in Laua-an, mostly near the
barrios of Maybonga, Datag, Virginia, and Guinhamon, and
Bugasong, sparingly distributed in the neighborhood of
the barrios of Pacete, Iglonoy, and Nawile. A conservative
in

estimate places their

number

in Antique at

around 1,000

When

the

Ambu-on became angry and

Legendary Origin
Monteses are asked how they came

to live in

Central Panay, they invariably refer to a legend which has
been handed down from generation to generation as follows:
Long before the coming of the Spaniards to the island
of Panay, there lived in the central part of the island two
pagan brothers, named Mat-han and Duma-6g, with their
These brothers possessed supernatural powers.
families.
were
so strong that each of them could uproot a big
They
They could also fly with
it any distance.
carry
tree and
their

Though

shields.

brothers,

their

relation

was

far

they were always quarelling. One reason
Duma-6g, the younger brother, envied
that
this
was
for
Mat-han because Mat-han possessed a power which he
did not have, namely, the power of taking and eating,
without being seen, the liver and heart of a human being.
Duma-6g, did not always like to be reminded of the superiority of Mat-han, so he conceived an idea of avoiding

from fraternal

for

He

planted a bamboo tree
a small mountain to the
south, between Tapaz and Jamindan, just a little to the
northeast of Da-an Norte. Through this tree, he drew
an imaginary line from east to west, and declared that if
intercourse with his brother.

on the top of

his brother or

Mount Agbagacay,

any member of

his family should cross the

the trespasser would be condemned to death. Mat-han
agreed, and as a result the two brothers never saw each

Tipasao by name, Mat-han
and killed him.

Many

Some time later, two young men from an unknown country
by Duma-6g. Their

arrived in the territory occupied

names were Mag-iran and Ambu-on, and they were also
At this time Duma-6g wanted to construct a
big house, and upon learning of the arrival of the strangers,
Duma-6g announced that any man who could erect the
biggest post for this house would be permitted to marry
brothers.

daughter as a reward. Ambu-on presented
himself and, without any difficulty, placed the required
post into the hole previously prepared for it. Duma-6g
lived up to his promise, and Ambu-on was married to his
daughter, Akiton. The couple lived happily for many
his prettiest

years and Akiton bore

many

children.

One day Mag-iran went out hunting wild chicken with
a si-ay, and, without knowing it, entered
the jurisdiction of Mat-han. When Mat-han learned of
Upon
his presence, he captured Mag-iran and killed him.
his snare called

Aided by his disciple,
overcame Ambu-on

easily

years later, four brothers with their families

came

to live in Central Panay. They were Hanglo, Matias,
Pido, and Cabatac. Thus the number of families in the
region, which later was called Da-an, was gradually inStill later, another two brothers, Andales and
creasing.
Roco, with their sons, Ubaldo and Bul-an, came to the

place to settle.

The next to come were a Negrito couple, Lubluban and
and his wife, Malikudong. They had formerly lived in
the lowlands but they had abandoned their lands there in
exchange for silver gongs, golden sadok, necklaces, jars,
etc.

number

Several years later, a

Some

of Spaniards

came to the

of these newcomers traveled inland

island of

Panay.

as far as

Mount Naooron and Mount Baloy

.

One Spaniard

remained in the region, at the place called Danao, and
married a native woman. From this union many children
were born, explaining the fact that among the Monteses
there are many of fair complexion.

Probable Origin

line,

other again.

decided to go to Mat-han's
But his strength was

house to claim his brother's body.
no match for Mat-han*s witchery.

popularly believed in Antique and in southern
Iloilo, where many Negritos may still be found roaming
in the forests or living in settlements, that the Monteses
are the offspring of the Visayans and the Negritos. Many
It

such,

is

known

as kalibug&n, meaning "half-breed",

may

be found in the mountains of Antique and southern Iloilo.
To these, it is claimed, may be traced the ancestry of the
Monteses.
This belief, however,

is

not supported either by tradition

condition of the Monteses. Accordor by the present
were already a number of families
there
ing to their legends,
Negrito couple came to join
when
a
in Central Panay
life

them. But furthermore, if the Monteses were really
descended from the Negritos, this would be evident in
Are the Monteses
their physical features and culture.
physically

similar

practices, beliefs
tical?

origin

to

and

the

Negritos?

superstitions,

and

Are their habits,
their dialect iden-

As a rule, the offspring of a Negrito reveals his
by his small stature (from 4 to 5 feet), kinky hair,
(Continued on page 50)

learning of the misfortune that had befallen his brother,

Jungle Rain
By Maximo Ramos
claps of thunder, and soon the
SUDDEN
Comes at a gallop to the shadowy

rain

jungle,

Beating pitter-patter on the broad leaves overhead

And on the jungle floor of moist fallen leaves
And the rotting log where the python lies asleep.
Then timidly a wild fowl crows from nowhere
And the sure, hoarse honk of a hornbill
Breaks forth from a top-branch.

And the voices of the wild
Have soon resumed their long, low chorus
With the passing of the jungle rain.
25

PHILIPPINE MAGAZINE

so

Mountains, lowlands, oceans, jungles
succession of scenes this trip affords!

.

.

.

And

January, 1938

what a varied
here we were,

down

in a velvet-smooth landing on the golf course at the
Paracale Country Club, and back to this strangely new
district that I have, of late, called "home".

Monteses

of

Panay

(Continued from page 25)

and almost black
cognized by these

The kalibugan can easily be reThe Monteses, on the other
features.

skin.

hand, are generally

They

hair, straight.

different dialect.

Most

taller, their skin is

brown, and their

are non-negroid, and speak a very

Their cultural plane

is

also

much

higher.

of their practices and habits are not similar to those

of the Negritos; their beliefs and superstitions are almost
entirely different.

The current belief is that the Monteses came from the
same stock as the Visayans. This view is more acceptable.
According to a history of Panay ("Maragtas sang
Pulo hga Panay") by Pedro A. Monteclaro, this island
was divided into three districts by the "Bornays", the first
settlers.
Datu Sumakuel was assigned to Antique, Datu
Bankaya to Aklan (Capiz), and Datu Paiborong to Irongirong (Iloilo). Later immigrants came to settle in these
districts, those coming from the district of Datu Sumakuel
in Borneo joined their former chieftain in Antique, those
from the district of Bankaya followed him to Capiz, and
the men of Paiborong went to live with him in Iloilo. The
chronicles collected by Father Tomas Nayarete of Capiz
also record the coming of the Malays to the island of Panay
in different periods.
Possibly the Monteses are descended
from the early Malay settlers who, lower in culture than
the later Malayans, were driven into the hinterland. Hemmed in on all sides, they betook themselves to the mountain fastnesses in the central part of the island, where
they lived unmolested to the present day, retaining some
of the characteristics which still attest to their origin.

Their legends support this idea.
In* physical features

He

a

Mont es

is

MAGIC CHEF GAS RANGE

ywe itfoyozc

almost exactly like

same height, with brown eyes
is
and a quite pronounced pug nose. It is true that there

a Visayan.

of the

many dark-skinned Monteses. It is likewise true
that there are a few Spanish mestizos. This fact would
seem to support the legend that later a Negrito couple
and a Spaniard joined the first settlers, and intermarried
are

with them. But as a rule, by physical appearance, the
average Montes can not be easily distinguished from a
Visayan.

Many of their beliefs are similar to those of the Visayans.
Like the uneducated Visayans, they believe in invisible
beings and in certain omens, and make offerings to the
spirits to insure their protection, to appease their anger,
or to

solicit their aid.

Similarities

may

every day use.

T^vON'T

be tied to your kitchen this summer. Let a

modern, automatic Magic Chef gas range give you
an extra hour of leisure every day. Spend it in your garden, with your friends, picnicking with your family,
playing golf, or any
this

summer was

A modern

way you wish, and

Magic Chef gas range keeps your kitchen

cooler and cleaner because it's fully insulated. It will cook

your whole meal unattended because
It

found in the objects of their
Their utensils, tools, and weapons of

and defense are similar. Their traps for wild
animals and their fishing apparatus are alike their musical
instruments and lighting utensils are the same. These
many similar objects are known by names common to the
Visayans and the Monteses alike.
offence

;

it

is

automatic*

has a two-piece, grid-pan, smokeless broiler.

non-clogging, fuel-saving top burners

also be

you'll say that

the happiest you ever had.

features. See the

have

Magic Chef gas range

It

has

and many other
in our store.

We

a style at a price that will just fit your particular needs;

MANILA GAS CORPORATION
136-138 T. Pinpin

PHILIPPINE MAGAZINE

January, 1938

The Public Profits—
To

provide good

The dress of the conservative Monteses is the exact
pattern of that worn by the Visayans years ago.
The close relationship of the Monteses with the Visayans
is best appreciated in their dialect, which is very similar
to that of the people of Antique and of the interior towns
and Capiz, known as the Hiniraya. The names

of Iloilo

rail

service the

MANILA RAILROAD

has been

of their utensils, tools, instruments of offence and defense,
and of the months and hours, are almost exactly the same.

spending large sums

Clothing and Dress
The holiday apparel of the Monteses is composed of a
and a shirt of pina
(pineapple) or abaca fiber textile. The shirt is usually
embroidered on the front. The head wear is the ordinary
buri hat, or the sadok, a wide-brimmed hat made of bamboo

To

cut

To

strengthen bridges

To

straighten curves

To

build better freight cars

down grades

pair of trousers of cheap cotton cloth

and leaves of the buri palm. A colored kerchief tied around
the neck completes the dress of a Montes "gentleman".

The Montes belle, however, is a more fastidious dresser.
Her camisa or jacket, with long narrow sleeves, is usually
made of silk and fine pina or abaca fiber, and is richly
embroidered. Her cylindrical skirt, called patadiong, is
made of silk and cotton, or simply of cotton, and is always
a harmonious combination of colors. Around the waist,
holding the patadiong, she wears a band of black or red
cloth.
But she is not contented with this costume alone.
She must have trinkets to enhance her beauty and to prove
her importance. One ornament which she can not do

To build better passenger coaches

To acquire powerful

To keep

all

51

locomotives

equipment always in

good operating condition

AND YET
The Railroad Passenger Fares and Freight

without

is

the headband, called saznpulong.

of a piece of black cloth

and Express Rates are at unprecedented

Low

Economical Level

It is

made

and worn around the forehead

with the two ends knotted at the back. The part covering
the forehead is adorned with silver coins, mostly Mexican
ten-centavo pieces. Holes are bored through the edges
of the coins which are sewed to the

More

public patronage will give the

Railroad better opportunity to
offer

of

the

Good,

Public

the

benefits

Economical Service

FURTHER INFORMATION CAN BE OBTAINED
BY WRITING OR CALLING
Traffic

Downtown

Department

Office,

Tel. 4-98-61

Tel. 2-31-83

521-523

Information

M

Local 42

Dasmariftas

band in three or four
The other indispensable ornaments are the comb,
bead necklace, rings, and earrings. Like her Christian
lines.

sister,

she also collects her hair in a knot into which a

of tortoise shell, decorated with silver or gold,

is

comb

stuck.

Beads of silver, with medals and Mexican one-peso coins,
worn by the well-to-do only. The poor are contented
with beads of seeds and simple rings of silver. Gold trinkets
are very scarce, silver being the metal more generally used.
When at work, the Monteses wear simple clothing. The
man uses only the clout and a buri hat made to protect
him from the heat of the sun. On rainy days, he uses the
sadok. The woman worker is simply dressed in a cotton
patadiong and an abaca or cotton blouse. The warrior
dons a simple clout, a head-band, and a waist-band usually
of red cloth. Sometimes he puts on a breast-plate called
pakile, made of carabao hide, and he is armed with a
long fighting bolo called talibong, or a lance and a wooden
are

shield.

Because

it

is

now much

easier to acquire

ready-made

clothings from the lowland Visayan merchants, the use
R. E. BERNABE
Chief Clerk

LEON M. LAZAGA
Traffic

Manager

CANDIDO SORIANO
City Agent

Manila Railroad Company
943 Azcarraga

Manila

by the Monteses of the ordinary Visayan costume
coming more general.

is

be-

Permanent Adornment
To supplement

their

rather scanty adornment,

they

method of permanent personal ornamentation.
Both men and women often tattoo their breasts, shoulders,
arms, and legs with the juice of a vine called boracan
practice a

PHILIPPINE MAGAZINE

52

January, 1938

Generally, the women tattoo the abdominal
design favored.
region also. There is no particular figure or
call it,
Monteses
The tattoo or batong-batong, as the
or
human
of dots, or conventionalized

and

charcoal.

may be composed
animal forms.

are the
other methods for beautifying themselves
eyebrows.
of
shaving
filing of teeth and the pulling out and
of both jaws by
In his te*ns, the Mont6s files the teeth
and even.
smooth
m-ans of a whetstone until they are
ones
older
the
with
Every child does his own teeth filing,
eyebrows
of
shaving
The pulling or
supervising the job.
Panay as the filing of teeth. The
Central
in
universal
as
is
thin line is
eyebrows are pulled out one by one until only a
off,
shaved
entirely
In some cases, the eyebrows are
left.
brows.
and a black line is tattooed on the

The

(To be continued)
ii

Wound

to Liberty

(Continued from page 23)
The next day, late in the afternoon, when he'd already
she appeared
given up hope she would ever come again,
in front of his coop.

"There

work

a way out," he said happily, "and

is

know why my

I don't

out.

Food Cooked

it will

surely

father did not think of

Electrically

Tastes Better"
"You have
is

alfheard

for cooking

how good

and baking.

on the modern

electric

the 'Dutch Oven'

Well,

range

.

it
.

.

has nothing

and

that's

saying a lot."

it."

"What

is

it?" Fair Feather asked eagerly.

"The

"During the fight and
"Oh, it is
my enemy, I'll allow
wounded
after I've already mortally
part of my body,
non-vital
some
in
him to give me a wound
me any more.
use
to
able
be
not
so that my master will
me. And so
kill
not
will
he
Due to the victory, however,
very simple," he

what? He'll
"Of course he

let

me

will let

said.

he finished triumphantly.

loose!"

me

loose!"

friend's
Great was Fair Feather's joy after weighing her
happily.
"It really might work out," she said
strategy.
How did you come to
all you will be free!
after
"Oh,
think of such a wonderful plan?"
night.
"Oh, it just came to me as I was thinking hard last
without
sleep
to
go
to
not
mind
You know I made up my
But I have a doubt," he said,
at something

oven has nothing to burn to

electric

create fumes to impair the original flavor of
food.

The same holds

true of cooking on the

top burners."

COOL — GLEAN — QUICK
ECONOMICAL
"The new heating units on modern electric
ranges are marvels of speed and endurance,
heating to
finitely

full

almost instantly and lasting inde-

with ordinary care."

"Everything favors the use of the

electric

arriving

wound is so
looking troubled. "It is this: Suppose the
will be a
there
healed,
has
it
deep that even long after
wound
the
suppose
Or
me?
Would you still love
scar.
be
you
wouldn't
limp,
me
make
is so deep that it would
people?"
your
of
presence
the
to walk with me in
ashamed

"and

you just the same," Fair Feather said,
to walk with you anywhere. All that I crave
proud
I'd be
out of here and under
for is your freedom, to see you again
well."
the shade of the trees that you love so
Blue Wattle regrooming
Due to the long and extra
early the next
again
and
master
ceived that night from his
come at last.
has
freedom
to
day, he knew that his chance
"I'd love

so.
So when Fair Feather came to visit him, he told her
my
"Don't ctfme here tomorrow," he said, "because
the
master will bring me to the cock-pit. Instead, come

day

after tomorrow.

good to eat to help

me

And be

sure to bring

bear the

wound

"Ye3," Fair Feather said happily.

that

me
I'll

days

later,

Cool,

clean,

quick,

economical

and

exceptionally convenient,"

DEALERS OFFER
ATTRACTIVE TERMS
"All

electrical

dealers,

including

Meralco,

are offering truly attractive terms to purchasers,

making

it

easy for anyone to have one and pay

for it while using it."

"I urge you to look into this matter of electric
cooking; you will surprise yourself with what

you learn about

it."

something

have."

"And good luck

to

you."

Two

range.

very early in tfiejmorning, Fair Feather

MANILA ELECTRIC COMPANY

The Monteses

of

Panay

By Eugenio Ealdama

Home

1

Life

THE

average Montes takes very little pride
in his dwelling place.
Generally, a shelter

out the beating rain and
to protect him from the heat of the sun is all he
wants. The real reason for this apparent lack of desire to
have a good house is most probably the habit of moving to

^

of the other.

It is built in the middle of the caingin
ground
to
avoid standing water during the rainy
high
on
season, or on the top of some hill nearby.
The standard
with
four-posted,
numerous
props,
is
hut
four by six meters

of production

dimension, with the floor about four feet above the

in

ground, and with only one window.

wood

bamboo

The building materials

cogon for roofing,
Flattened bolo
or bamboo, called tadtad, may also be used for roofing
and thatching. A simple bamboo ladder or a notched pole
are

for posts,

for frames,

and tree bark, called hulac, for the sides.

is

means of access to the house.
The Montes does not care for furniture.

the

He

prefers to

on the floor, sitting or squatting before the food; hence
does not need a table. The only indispensable piece of
furniture in a Montes hut is the hammock, of which every
Montes is a proficient maker. In bigger dwelling places,
the wooden mortar use^d for pounding rice occupies a proeat

minent place.

A

basket or two,

made

of

bamboo

or rattan,

Simple utensils are found in the kitchen. The hearth is
bamboo table, with a rim, filled with earth
and ashes. Three stones serve as support for the pot.
Plates are seldom seen; biso or earthen bowls and flat bamboo baskets are used instead. For drinking, coconut shell
and bamboo cups are used. Pots and earthen vessels are
common, pottery making being not unknown among the
a rectangular

Monteses.

Two regular meals a day are considered enough. Between seven and eight is breakfast time and about noon,
luncheon time. In the afternoon, the people usually eat
boiled roots or tubers only.

As a rule, all members of the family eat together. Rice
and vegetables, or such tubers as baong, banayan, ubi,
and camote, constitute the daily food of the Monteses.

and meat are seasoned with

batuan, a green, sour fruit. Other
condiments are unknown to their palate.
While matches are extensively used, the primitive

red pepper, or with

method of making fire has not been discarded. In fact,
almost every home is provided with a fire-making apparatus
called

santic

the stone

—steel and

flint.

Some

is

of one piece

fine scrapings of

The

is

bored in the middle

bamboo

are

piece with the scrapings

is
is

the mainstay of the Montes, but the method
crude. He has no work animals, and labors

alone, or with the aid of his wife

and

children, until he

clears a hill or a slope of the vegetation that covers

He

girdles the trees or fells

them and

cuts

it.

down shrubs

and vines, afterwards burning them. A week or so later
he does the durok or final clearing of the land, and the
caingin is then ready for planting.
One hectare is the average size of a Montes caingin.
He plants it with either a cavan of mountain rice, or half
a cavan of corn. He does not use a plow. His only implement is tara- tar a, a hardwood stick with a pointed end
or an iron point. He thrusts this into the ground, pulls it
out, and drops four or five grains into the hole.
Then he
steps forward and covers the hole with his foot, and repeats
the process until the whole clearing is planted. Under
ordinary circumstances, the seed germinates in a few days,
and three or four months later the Montes is ready to hartoil.
For every cavan of rice that he
from thirty to eighty cavanes.
There are about twenty known varieties of rice in the
Montes country. The most popular varieties are the
antoramis, calipayan, sir to, buracnaga, capawod,
and capucao. The first four have much finer grains.
When cooked, the rice becomes very soft. The capawod
and the capucao emit an agreeable odor.
The people also raise camote, ubi, sitao, gabi, and
other vegetables. Sugar cane is planted along the sides
of the caingin not for the purpose of making sugar but for
making cabalauan, a Montes wine.

vest the fruit of his

plants, he reaps

serve as the family wardrobe.

Salt is rarely used; vegetables

The edge

Agriculture
Agriculture

small hut suffices.

together.

is then rubbed crosswise against the sharpened
edge of the other, or vice versa, until the friction ignites
them. This apparatus is known as bag-idan, from the
word bag-id, meaning "to rub" or "to strike."

are usually few, a

As the members of a Montes family

bamboo

inserted in the hole.

sufficient to shut

another hillside after harvesting the year's crop in his
caingin or forest clearing. Indeed, why build an elaborate
home when after so short a time it has to be abandoned?

split

sharpened and a tiny hole

The

steel is struck against

held, producing sparks

on which a plug of tinder
which set fire to the tinder.
In the absence of flint and steel, the people produce fire
by a more primitive method still rubbing two pieces of
is



The fertility of the soil, its nearness to a stream, and the
ease of clearing are the chief factors taken into consideration
by the Montes in the selection of his caingin. An old caingin,

may

again be cultivated after four or five years.
is not considered sufficient to make the
place marangay or ripe, that is, again suitable for culticalled lati,

A

shorter period

vation.

Manufactures
a degree of proficiency among the Monteses in
the art of making things. Their skill is most manifest in
making shields, and fighting-bolo handles and scabbards.
They select the best wood available, such as narra, ban-

There

is

tolinao, or camagon and anahaw for these objects.
The handle of the fighting-bolo, called talibong, is elaborately carved. The invariable design is a grotesque figure
of the head of a man, with a long nose.
95

5*

The bottom

of the hole

is

The Monteses very seldom buy utensils and other
household effects. They make their own mortars and
They make their own
pestles, mats, baskets, cups, etc.
earthenware and pipes. They also make their own traps
or snares for birds and animals, and their own instruments
The women are adept in basket
for hunting and fishing.

unwary animal walks over

weaving and coarse embroidery, but generally they do not
know much of clothmaking. Weaving is a lost household

they retain
which
placed in the underbrush around an inclosure within
His
a tame cock, called parangat-an> is tied to a peg.
for
a
crowing attracts the wild rooster, which, spoiling
tighter
draws the
fight, runs his head through a noose which

industry

series

ground for fish-feeding birds, or
When the
in trees where wild pigeons feed on the fruit.
head into
bird steps on the noose, perches on it, or thrusts its
bird into the air and
it, a spring is released, throwing the
tightening the noose around its feet or neck.

runway of quails,

in moist

Other means of catching birds are the igpit and the
pulut. The former is a bamboo device so made that
when a bird picks at the bait, a wedge slips out and the
Pulut is a sticky
bird's neck is caught between two slats.
substance taken from the tipolo tree. It is spread on a
piece of wood or bamboo, which is placed in a fruitbearing

Forest products

A

tree.

bird stepping into the sticky stuff

Fishing

Living as tbey do in the mountains along the rivers, the
Monteses, by force of environment, have become excellent
hunters and fishermen. After planting their caingin, there
use of their time in
is almost nothing to do, and they make
hunting deer, wild boar, and wild chicken, which abound
in the region. An abandoned caingin becomes in due time

misses.

Malayan

brain.

A

similar to that used nearly

believed to be a product of the

similar contrivance called

belantay

the Sakai of the Malay
Peninsula. In Zambales, this trap is called belaiic and
balantic.
in the Ilocos Provinces and in Pampanga,
Monteses,
The Tagalogs and the Visayans, as do also the
is

said to be very

common among

call it balatic.

As to whether the word is Sakai or is borrowed from the
Malay, there is no authority. But according to the Malay
Dictionary of Clifford and Sweetenham, the Malay term
belante. This similarity would seem to justify the
is
1

Malay.
belief that the Philippine term originated from the
is
which
The balatic consists of a long arrow or spear,
piece
driven, with all the force of a drawn bough or other
which
of springy wood through the body of the animal
cord
a
chances to release the spring by striking against
strung across the

trail.

Another means of catching deer or wild boar is the
Hmba-ong or soyac, more generally employed in Antique.
wide,
It is a pit-trap, two or more meters long, one meter

and one or two meters deep, dug across the run, lightly
covered with twigs and earth which gives way when an
96

it is

and even children.
method of catching fish by hand to the more elaborate
methods requiring the use of poisonous fruit or bark, and
the employment of all hands in the neighborhood. In
deeper streams, the sarapang and the sagangat are
employed. The sarapang is a small reed about 1-1/2
meters long, at one end of which is inserted a pointed prong
made of the rib of an old umbrella. When a lobster or
small fish is seen, the sarapang is thrown with lightningmisses
like velocity and with such precision that it seldom
usually
is
but
sarapang,
a
like
is
sagangat
the object. The
made of bamboo, several inches in diameter and about 2

throws his deadly spear, called sibat, and very rarely

is

and unlike hunting

engaged in by women
The means vary from the simple

a good pasture ground for deer because, after the regular
grows there in luxuriance. The hunter goes
to the thicket, hides himself in the shrubbery near the run
and waits for the game. When the animal passes by, he

over the Philippines,

is

almost a daily activity,

that requires manly endurance,

crops, grass

all

held fast.

Fishing

Hunting

is

is

meters long. The prong is made of pointed steel. It is
operated in the same manner as the sarapang but is used
only for catching eels and other big fishes. Another fishing
apparatus is a small, circular net made of coarse abaca
It is called sibut or sicpao and is used only in
cloth.
deep streams. The handle is attached to the frame. The
fisherman walks slowly in the water or sits on the bank.

As soon
into

as he sees a lobster or

the water and

moving.

raises

it

up

fish,

he dips the contrivance

in the direction the fish

is

and skill.
the employment of

This requires a great deal of patience

The easier and surer method, is
binao-gon and ta-on. Both of these

are

bamboo

weirs,

The
and are employed
a
when
closes
automatically
which
mouth,
former has a
guarded
of
ta-on
is
the
mouth
The
fish has been caught.
by sharp slats pointing to the bottom to make the escape
of the catch difficult if not impossible. These weirs are
for catching fish, eel,

and

lobster.

placed on the bottom of the stream, facing the current, and
a structure of stones, or bamboo built around them in such
a way that the fish can go down stream only through the



:

j

i

(1)

Negritos of Zambalea,

W.

]

J

the more he struggles.
The snares for other birds are ingenious contrivances.
They are usually made up of a simple noose placed in the

as well as their own produce which are in great demand in
the lowland are only occasionally brought down to be sold
because of the difficulties in transporting them.

which

;

by pegs driven into the ground,
an upright position. The whole device is

Commercial activities among the Monteses are very
Every family tries to be self-supporting. Their
limited.
products, which are barely enough for their own consumpBut when the price
tion, are seldom sold in the market.
and sell them to
fibers
abaca
of abaca is high, they strip
also gather
they
demand,
a
middlemen. When there is
resistant to
vines
of
varieties
hipguid and hagnaya, two
building
fish
in
coast
the
on
salt water, used by fishermen
they
can
which
product
forest
Rattan is another
corrals.
lowlanders.
easily gather and sell to the
The lack of roads in the region is the one great obstacle

trap,

|
^

piece of cane that, assisted

Trade

The Montes

|

usually planted with pointed sticks, called soyac.
The noose-snare for catching wild chickens, known as the
A
si-ay, is also used to some extent by the Monteses.
long
of small nooses of rattan are so arranged on a

among them.

to the material progress of the Monteses.

it.

A. Reed.
[



With

Charity

To

All

By Putakte and Bubuyog
2101 Bilivid Viejo (D)
Quiapo, Manila
January 4, 1938
Messrs. Potuckte et
Manila.

From

and iron

know

that

you are

"Potuckte et al, the author of the column of "With
Charity Towards All" in the aristocratic Philippine
Magazine.
Since I was in the province and my brother had been a subscriber
of it long before I knew how to read heavy readings, I have been reading
your page with philosophic appetite. I salute you for your high thoughts
and philosophies of life, much more your Voltairian style. IS LIFE
LIVING? I wish to hear from you on this age-old inquiry
of man. I have responses from plenty of able minds here in the islands.
Enclose a self- addressed stamp envelope for your response. I wish
to extend to you my sincere thanks in advance.

WORTH

Very

sincerely yours,

x

Dear Mr. x

x

.

— x—— —
.

,

,

,



Let us answer your letter categorically:
So you know "from reliable informations' that
1st.
we are "Potuckte et al"! Young man, have you any idea
Do you know that this terrible
of what "Potuckte" means?
word is not heard anywhere except in what is called "polite
society"? Do you know that it is fit only for women's
ears? Do you know that Emily Post actually uses this
word?
'

the Philippine Magazine "aristocratic".
Perhaps you think that it is the organ of the Popular Front.
Young man, know that Mr. A. V. H. Hartendorp is a
Don't confuse him with Tio Rogers, the
proletarian.
Spanish hidalgo.
You say that your brother "had been a subscriber"
3rd.
Are you sure that he has
of the Philippine Magazine.
subscription?
his
paid
"Long before I knew how to read heavy readings,
4th.
I have been reading your page with philosophic appetite."
We envy you.
So you know how to read "heavy readings"
You must know ex- Justice Recto's speeches by heart,
specially the one where he quotes Justice Stone, a terribly
2nd.

You

call

!

heavy

writer.

say you salute us for our "high thoughts and
philosophies of life, much more your lour] Voltairian style."
May we inquire whether it is a fascist salute, a Nazi salute,
You
or the Lapi salute of Heil Kornejo, der Pasayfiihrer?
characterize our style as "Voltairian". What do you
5th.

You

mean by "voltairian"? And who was Voltaire? Was
he ever a Mayor of Manila? Did he know his onions?
And did he, like Mayor Posadas, "engage his superiors
Did he cancel any permits for
in legalistic controversies"?
public meetings? Answer us that!

WORTH

LIVING?" Now
You ask, "IS LIFE
a really serious matter. We take it that it was not
just idle curiosity which prompted you to draw us out on
what you picturesquely call "the age-old inquiry of man".
We know that you have too much respect for our "high
thoughts and philosophies of life" and "our voltairian style"
to waste our time by obliging us to answer questions which
mean nothing to you. Answering foolish questions is not
our forte. The University of the Philippines Information
Well, we imagine
Service can do that very much better
that you are a serious young man, helplessly struggling
against Fate in the shape of your warden, stone walls,
6th.

this is

of the weir. The fisherman sets his weirs in the
afternoon and removes them early the following morning.
It is very seldom that he is disappointed.
The garong-garong or pacul is bigger than the ta-on
Or binao-gon, and is used for catching eels and other fish.
It is constructed like the ta-on, except that it is further
It is employed during the
lined inside with thorny vines.

mouth

(We deduce this from your
know that cell No. 2101
really terrible! (This we de-

Also we

on Floor D is
duce from your "philosophic appetite".) Life
has been cruel to you. It has nothing to
offer you but gall and wormwood and pi-

al.

reliable informations, I

bars.

address.)

We

nawa. Our hearts go out to you.
mourn
Listen! At 5:30 this afternoon we will stage
a daylight jailbreak with the help of the following experts
from Cabanatuan: Cirilo and Emiliano Santos, Nicolas
Carpio, Briccio Sarenas, Mariano Taguan, Benito Santos,
Pablo de la Cruz, P. Esteban, Primitivo Toledo, and Avelino
Igsa.
You have nothing to fear. The other day we asked
Colonel Aguilar, the gentleman who shook the hand of
General Santos while we were under the Biertisch, to
consult his spiritualist about your fate, and to the question,
"Mamamatay o mamamatay?" the spiritualist answered,
"Both." This answer was perfectly satisfactory to us,
and we hope you will find it perfectly satisfactory too.
For it tallies wonderfully with our plans for you. You
ask, "Is life worth living?"
Our answer is an emphatic
NO!!! Now, we know that you are not the young man
to throw away a piece of good advice.
know that you
consulted us because you desire to be guided by our "high
thoughts and philosophies of life".
do not doubt
that you will do exactly what we tell you to do. You
know that our hearts go out to you and that we mourn
your fate; so you can not suspect our intentions. Well,
DIE!!! That's the only way
young man,
out! Don't be afraid though, as we shall stand by you
up to the last moment, and even after. We assure you
that we will do so philosophically.
There remains only to tell you the manner of your exit.
Poison? No; it may not prove fatal, for as they say,
"One man's poison is another man's food." Tincture of
iodine may only stimulate your thyroid glands, while
Prussic acid may convert you into a Nazi. Nor do we
advise you to commit hara-kiri; the Japanese aren't
do not countenance blowing out your brains,
here yet.
Only one
either; it is not supposed to be constitutional.
possibility remains: to read Theo F. Rogers' "Tragic
your

fate.

We

We

YOU MUST

We

Journey".
This is our plan for you.

And
we

as our hearts go out to
on your following
our advice to the letter. If you have other plans after
your escape from Bilibid, pray postpone them until you
hereby serve you
have carried out our plan for you.
warning that we, with our "high thoughts and philosophies
You can not choose to
of life", are not to be trifled with.
have commuignore our advice and get away with it.
nicated our plan to the Philippine Army, and ex- Justice
Recto has promised to incorporate it into the ConstituEvery movement you make will be closely watched
tion.
by the intelligent division of the army headed by the second
So you had better be on the square. After all,
colonel.
death will be nothing to ycu, young man, after you have
read Theo F. Rogers.

you and we mourn your

fate,

insist

We

We

Earnestly yours,

PUTAKTE AND BUBUYOG.
day. It is placed on the mouth of a hole in which an eel
Often a stick is inserted into the
is believed to be hiding.
hole to drive the eel out and force it to enter the garonggarong.
The most spectacular method of fishing and the one that
It consists of pouring into
yields the most is the panuba.
(Continued on page 107)

PHILIPPINE MAGAZINE

February, 1938

I received two belated Christmas cards last month, one from the Rev.
George William Wright, whose address is 156 Fifth Avenue, New York,
and one from Dr. Sol Auerbach, New Republic writer, also New York,
381 Fourth Avenue, Room 1301. Dr. and Mrs. Auerbach were here last
The card was signed: "Sol and Isabelle Auerbach and our newlyyear.
born daughter Linda". Congratulations to all three! And thanks
Not being a churchgoing individual, I never
to "Sky-Pilot" Wright.
heard him preach during all the years he was here, but I had a part in
publishing a small book of his which was very sincere, very beautiful.

Times-Dispatch, in commenting in a
on a Philippine Magazine editorial about General Douglas

The Richmond,
recent issue

Virginia,

MacArthur, spoke of the Magazine, for the information of its readers,
"seeming to approximate roughly a cross between a subtropical
New Yorker and a New Republic" Although the comparison is not
so very accurate, it is amusing and flattering enough. I think the TimesDispatch editor looked at the Putakte and Bubuyog page and the editorials and drew his conclusion.
as

\

The Monteses

of

{Continued from page

Panay

107

forty-seven roots of twenty -one different plants have been
collected.

3

The

taining coconut

roots are placed in a small bottle con-

Then

oil.

bits of stone or

wood

surrep-

removed from any piece of furniture in the church
of the nearest town are added.
The strange concoction is called tiw-tiw. Its possessor
becomes a successful fisherman. He employs no weirs,
titiously

He

simply goes to the stream with the
A frog or a lobster is
caught and attached to one end of a long stick or small
branch. The fisherman dips it now and then into the water,
and lo! fishes approach the fisherman who, bolo or sagangat
in hand, kills them right and left.
nets, or spears.

tiw-tiw and a bolo or a sagangat.

The net is placed in this way because the Monteses know by experience
(2)
that the kind of fish or lobster they want to catch moves upstream when disturbed.
The names of the plants are: 1st set, buyo't linte, macaudag, salin(3)
duyoc; 2nd set, macalisang, bulanbulan, badiang: 3rd set, tagohomoc, pisic,
lawilawi; 4th set, tagohosay, hiranhiran, bunyag; 5th set, sumpa, dapulay
or tayobong, parapad; 6th set, tagoriroc, balitadhan, lonok; 7th set, ha-

mindang, carancaran, buyoc-buyoc.

97)

the deepest part of the stream large quantities of the pound-

ed fruit of the tuba tree or the bark of other poisonous
trees which kill or stupefy fish and other aquatic creatures.

The whole population in the neighborhood participates, the
panuba being also considered a day of festivity. This
method is by far the surest, as no animal living in the river
is immune from the deadly or stupefying juice of the poison-

Mi can

f

4h& cuUonuUU

(Refill

(PencU

ous trees used.
are known as the ludup and the
fisherman dives in the deeper part
the
ludup,
In
dildig.
with
the sagangat or with the sibut or
armed
river,
of the

The other methods

A

slight

pressure on the top and the

lead appears.

Usually he puts on diver's eyeglasses to protect
When he sees any kind of big fish, he strikes it
his eyes.
with the sagangat or catches it with the sicpao or sibut.
Dildig is fishing by a group of four or more persons. The
net called bareng, made of coarse abaca cloth, is placed in
2
A dam
the water with the mouth facing down stream
bareng
of
to
the
sides
on
both
built
is
of stones and brush
sicpao.

Contains a supply of 30" of lead.

Holds the pencil with a firm

grip.

.

avoid escape of the catch.

means of pegs and

reeds.

The mouth is held open by
The participants squat in the

move slowly towards the bareng,
called unog and lobsters into it.

water in line and
small fishes

The leads follow one another automatically. No troublesome inserting
of single leads.

driving

There is the method, lastly, but not the least efficacious,
according to the Monteses, of the employment of a magic
charm. The charm consists of a bottle of roots, collected

Few
in

during the Lenten season on seven successive Fridays.
During the first Friday, seven roots of each of three different plants are gathered,

and so on

until

single

parts,

therefore

reliable

„^_______

use.

Each pressure advances the lead

one hundred

to

the correct length.

The
in

split tip

keeps the lead securely

position.

4Ae,(Te/lc4xn?(n4At4<u^Je^
SOLD AT:
110
139

& 112,
& 227,

Escolta

Rosario

SOLE AGENTS
MENZI & CO., INC.
180,

Juan Luna


Related documents


PDF Document ealdama monteses of panay 1938
PDF Document av 14 oa roxas
PDF Document mt pulag adventure1837
PDF Document av 09 oa igbaras
PDF Document climb mt pulag1086
PDF Document cheapest mt pulag tour1293


Related keywords