Past, Present & Future

Happy! Philippines Independence Day, 12 June

Independence Day (Filipino: Araw ng Kasarinlán; also known as Araw ng Kalayaan, "Day of Freedom") is an annual national holiday in the Philippines observed on June 12, commemorating the declaration of Philippine independence from Spain in 1898.


Way, Way Back Thanks to ‘Tabon Man', who left a bit of his (or her, according to some) skull in a cave in Palawan at least 22,000 years ago, a sliver of light shines into the deep, dark prehistory of the Philippines. The oldest known human relic of the islands, this bone suggests that the Tabon Caves helped early Homo sapiens survive the last ice age.

Later generations left behind tools and terracotta jars, including the 3000-year-old Manunggul burial jar. Hailed as a masterpiece of ancient pottery, the jar depicts two people paddling a boat into the afterlife. To this day, the ocean and the boat remain powerful symbols in the Philippines. Even the word barangay, meaning a community or the basic Filipino social unit, is derived from the ancient balangay, or sailboat.


Rowthorn, C. (2003). Philippines (8th ed.). Lonely Planet.


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