Notes on the history of Chinese Christians of the Philippines (Part III)

Editor’s Notes: This is the third of a series of articles written by Guillermo Gomez Rivera, a long-time contributor of Mr Rivera is a Premio Zobel awardee, a member of the Academia Filipina and former National Language Committee Secretary, Philippine Constitutional Convention 1971-73.


All those historians supposedly educated today in English under U.S. WASP colonialism are even incapable to define what is Filipino. The so-called “State Historian” in one Teodoro A. Agoncillo, in his required history textbook for our public schools called “A History of the Filipino People”, or words to that effect, admits on page 6 of this same book that “it is difficult if not impossible to define what is Filipino” when this is the easiest thing to do if the History being taught were only the true one and not the revised and falsified one under U.S. WASPo orders.

The first Filipinos were, of course, the vassals of King Philippe the Second of Spain and the Philippines (el Rey Felipe Segundo de España y de Filipinas). Among those vassals were the Peninsulares that settled in these Islands called “Felipenos”. Aside from the Spanish Peninsulares there were the Chinos Cristianos that were paying tribute and taxes to El Rey Felipe Segundo for which they were also called “Felipenos” or “supporters and tax-payers of Felipe.

Thus, the Chinos Cristianos like Sinloc were “Felipenos”, that is to say Filipinos, since they paid tribute and taxes to El Rey Felipe Segundo after accepting him as their natural sovereign (soberano natural) jointly with the indigenous Tagalogs, Visayan, Ilocanos, Pampangos, Mindanao Lumad, etcetera who also accepted El Rey Felipe Segundo de España in a Synod-Referendum Organized in Manila during the years 1598 and 1599.

It is ironically a WASP historian who, grudgingly, admits this truth as fact. In his book “The Hispanization of the Philippines”, John Leddy Phelan, in pages 23 and 25 of his doctoral thesis points out that the local chieftains “were ferried to Manila” where they were individually asked if they accepted the King of Spain as their soberano natural (natural sovereign).

Among those tribes was the tribe of the Chinese settlers in Baybay (San Nicolas) and Binondo. To this question all the tribal Chieftains answered Sí (Yes). Only the twenty five tribes of the Cordillera, the so-called Ygorrots, said No. What is curious is that even the Moros, or semi-slamized tribes of Mindanao and Sulú (Joló) also said Yes although they did not always keep their word.

After this 1599 synod-referendum, the Chinese tribe of Baybay, or the Mayi-in-ila Kung Shing Fu, played a pivotal role in the great Galeon trade between Manila, Acapulco and Seville. The Chinese here were the ones who went home to China and brougth back the principal products of the said Galleon trade such as silk, sandal wood, porcelain, jade, etcetera.

On the other hand, the U.S. WASPs, after duping Presidente Emilio Aguinaldo in HongKong, with false assurances that they, the Americans, were his allies against Spain, later waged a treacherously unjust war against the 1896-1898 República de Filipinas that had declared its independence in Kawit, Cavite on June 12 1898.

And during that unjust War, the U.S. WASPs massacred, according to writer Gore Vidal, three million defenseless Filipinos who were merely defending their freedom along with their newly founded Republic and country. And upon winning that unjust war, the U.S. WASPos never admitted the Filipinos as American Citizens nor allowed the Philippines to be a U.S. State as promised to the Partido Federalista organized by Pardo de Tavera, Legarda and Luzuriaga.

And while Filipinos were never made American Citizens by their new masters, Chinos Cristianos like Don Carlos Palanca, Don Severo Limtuaco and Afonso Dy Buncio continued being Spanish Citizens up to the end of the Japanese occupation of Manila. But let us go back to the history of Sin Loc.


What we know about Sin Loc is, more or less, what most of his descendants know about him today, such as Don Manuel Locsin, Don Aurelio Locsin and his learned wife, the already mentioned Doña Soledad Lacson de Locsin.

Everybody also knows that SIN LOC arrived at Iloilo around 1750 and called himself “Agustin” upon baptizing himself a Catholic in order to later marry Cecilia Junsay y Martínez from Molo, Yloilo, who was a Mestiza Terciada, that is to say a mix of Chinese, Visayan and Spanish.

And Tía Chóleng (Doña Soledad Lácson), wife of Tío Iyo (Don Aurelio Locsin), happened to be a good historian and was acclaimed as a cultured woman ( “culta literata de la provincia de Negros”) according to the Laureled Prince of Ylongo and Spanish Poetry from Yloilo, Don Flavio Zatagoza Cano in his book “Cantos a España” (1936, Ciudad de Yloilo).

It was then Tía Chóleng who made studies on the culture and old trade in Arévalo and in Molo, old Yloilo municipalities, and explained to this writer that SIN LOC was a silk merchant dealing with other weaves from China. There is the mental picture of SIN LOC as a cloth merchant settled in Molo.

After knowing this personal circumstances of SIN LOC, it became possible for us to piece together his life in the ambiance that was existing in old Molo and Yloilo. And history, as recorded in Spanish, can give us the 1750 ambiance of the Philippines of that time.

Upon writing SIN LOC’s story in the form of an illustrated novel, all the details that possibly influence his life can be easily reconstructed so that his descendants today may be enabled to appreciate his greatness based in his personal humility and in his work aside from his bravery and heroicity.


To anger the Chinese against the Spanish Conquistadores in the Philippines, the Sino-Spanish relations in the past were deliberately poisoned by the intervening U.S.WASP colonialists by deliberately misrepresenting historical facts related to these incidents.

For colonial reasons of their own, the U.S. WASP colonizers of these Islands have always tried to paint themselves as “the good guys” and the “liberators” of the Filipinos, including those of Chinese descent, from the so-called abuses and cruelties of the Spanish conquistadores and their frailes.

Among these so-called abuses and cruelties is the so-called “massacre” of the Chinese in the 17th century in Manila and environs. In so-called Philippine History books written in English by U.S. WASP lackeys, the Spanish massacred the Chinese in Manila without any justification and in great numbers reaching twenty thousand up to thirty thousand and even up to sixty thousand victims.

But this so-called massacres are instantly belied when we count the true number of Spaniards living inside Intramurso when such massacres occurred. While there were hardly a thousand Spaniards inside Intramuros, the Chinese residing in Binondo, Santa Cruz and tondo usually numbered thirty thousand.

The question that immediately comes to mind is how can one thousand Spaniards in Intramuros, including women, children and old people, “massacre” twenty thousand, or more, Chinese rebels outside the walls of Intramuros. While the Chinese in Manila where in the tens of thousands, there were never more than thirteen thousand Spaniards all over these Islands during the first two centuries of their government.

It is not, of course, denied that there were disagreements between the Spanish and the Chinese in the coures of Philippine history, but this matter needs a second look since it neither can be denied that there is an anti-Spanish sectarian propaganda from U.S. WASP quarters since 1900. And we all know now that there is upon us a U.S. neocolonialism that affects Philippine economy, language and culture.

This is why the story of SINLOC, the NOBLE CHINO CRISTIANO, becomes relevant and should be known by his descendants and the entire Filipino people, if not the entire world if only to expose the innacuracies that come with the teaching of so-called Philippine History in our schools to our unaware children.


  1. Mitchell Badelles says

    Very informative! What is WASP? This is the first time I’ve heard of it.
    And would you have more information on Mindanao? I’m from Mindanao. Although born in Quezon City, I grew up in Iligan City and would like to know more of this particular part of Philippine History. What is the Royal Hashemite Kingdom of Sulu and Sabah?

  2. guillermo gomez rivera says

    WASP stands for White Anglo Saxon Protestants. It refers to the white ruling minority of the United States of America. I am sorry, I do not have the full story of what you call “the Royal Hashemite Kingdom of Sulu and Sabah”. Is this the dynasty from Joló that rented out Sabah to the British to the protest of the Manila Spanish administration? Is this the Joló dynasty that eventually made the Philippines lose Sabah to the British who later grabbed it with the consent of the American administration of Manila in the 1940s?

  3. Michael Anthony says

    Thank you for this information Sir Rivera. I am from Iligan City and is currently conducting a study regarding the Chinese Community. I agree with Ms Badelles that there hasn’t been that much written about the Chinese in Philippine History (probably what you have stated in the article was the reason behind) especially in Mindanao. They are often neglected and sometimes portrayed as “negative” that prejudices and stereotyping are still prevalent. I would like to inquire from you sir regarding the Chinese in the Philippines
    1) was the term Pari’an refers to the “priest” or “pari”? since there are sources that made use of the term “market” to define pari’an?
    2) were their specific decrees made by the Spanish government to deport a number of Chinese to Mindanao? the term “deportados” was used during my research about the topic
    And lastly, 3) was the Americans responsible for labeling the Chinese as cunning and sexual licentious?

    Thank you sir and more power.

  4. says

    (1) Yes, Mr Michael Anthony: Parian refers to priests, “pary”, but missionary priests since Parian is a place where the Spanish missionary priest would go to convert the non-christian Chinese to Catholicism. “Guinaparian” said the Visayans from the Iloilo Parian. “Pinaparian” said the Tagalogs of the Manila Parian where, as pointed out, went the Spanish Dominican missionaries. Parian actually translates to “Chinese Mission”.
    (2) Yes there could be cases of Chinese individuals who were deported to Mindanao as a legal punishment. But, there is the case of the 1,500 Chinos Christianos, members of Suntuaco’s Real Principe Regiment that was also sent to Mindanao to stop the Moro Pirates from attacking Christians towns of Visayas and Luson. These are not “deportados” but “asignados”.
    (3) That American label about the licentiousness of the Chinese is ridiculous because relative. It is not only the Chinese who can be sexually licentious.

  5. says

    And US WASP influence in Philippine history is also evident with the omission of the SUNTUACO or TUÁSON phenomenon. Suntuaco, who was a Chinese trader from Fujian, China, involved in the Manila-Acaulco galleon trade, was also a very good cook. So good a cook was he that the Spanish Governor-General’s family befriended him. Suntuaco converted to Christianity and became a Spanish subject with the name Don Antonio Maria Tuáson. He eventually married a Spanish woman from Spain surnamed Zavala and had many children by her residing as a Spanish caballero in Binondo, Manila. This occurred in the 1760s.
    When news of a British invasion of Manila, in 1764, was confirmed as true, Suntuaco, now Don Antonio Maria Tuason organized the regiment REAL PRINCIPE composed of one thousand five hundred (1,500) CHINOS CRISTIANOS like him who were subjects of Spain in order to help the Governor General SIMON DE ANDA defend the Philippines from the British who were envious of the Galleon trade. In the end the British were successfully contained only in Intramuros because of Simon de Anda and the Regimiento del Real Principe of Tuáson. Even with the help of Diego Silang, marked as a traitor to both Spain and the Philippines at that time, the British could not conquer Pampanga where Simon de Anda established the Spanish Government making Bacolor the Capital of the Philippines. And since Pampanga was not conquered by them, neither were the British able to join the so-called revolution of Diego Silang in the Ilocos region. Diego Silang because of his abuses and atrocities against his fellow Ilocanos was eventually assassinated by another Ilocano, Vicos. In the end the British surrendered and declared the Philippines returned to Spain.
    The Tuason Real Principe Regiment was also assigned to Mindanao to stop, from their own camps, the Moro Pirates that frequently raided Christian Filipino towns of the Visayas and Luzon. Even towns like Namacpacan (now ‘Luna’) in Ilocos had seaside towers to repel the Moro invasions and bloody raids.
    Don Antonio Maria Tuáson was aptly rewarded by the King of Spain. He was given a Spanish title of nobility, FIJODALGO, and all the land, starting at the gates of Malacañang, he can cover on horseback from six in the morning to six in the evening. He eventually became the owner of all the lands that included Sampaloc, Santa Mesa, Mariquina and other Manila suburbs that later on became known as the “Tuáson State” which the American Government diluted as they striped him of his noble title “in the name of democracy”.
    It is not, of course, denied that there were disagreements between the Spanish and the Chinese in the coures of Philippine history, but this matter needs a second look since it neither can be denied that there is an anti-Spanish sectarian propaganda from U.S. WASP quarters since 1900. And we all know now that there is upon us a U.S. neocolonialism that affects Philippine economy, language and culture.

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