Today in Philippine History, March 15, 1565, blood compact was made between Sikatuna and Miguel Lopez de Legazpi in Bohol

Wednesday March 14, 2012 ()

On March 15, 1565, the so-called Sandugo or blood compact was made between Bohol chieftain Sikatuna and Spanish explorer Miguel Lopez de Legazpi in Bohol.

  
Juan Luna's illustration of the blood compact between Sikatuna and Miguel Lopez de Legazpi.   

Earlier, more than 40 years after Ferdinand Magellan died in the Battle of Mactan in Cebu, Legazpi was ordered by Spain in 1564 to launch an expedition to establish colonies and to pick up a lucrative spice trade.

After almost a year of sailing, the Legazpi expedition reached the Philippines and landed first on the island of Cibabao (present day Samar) but failed to settle there.

He and his companions went off to sail south, to the direction of Mindanao, but due to the winds, his ship was forced to take the route back to the Visayas.

Legazpi landed on the shores of Bohol, but they were given a hostile welcome by the Boholanos, who mistook them as Portuguese who had come to plunder and kill.

With the help of his Malay pilot, Legazpi was able to explain to Datu Sikatuna of Bohol and Datu Sigala of Loboc that they were not Portuguese and that they had come to offer peace.

Thus, a blood compact was done in order to seal their friendship and establish amicable bonds between the two parties.

At present, the compact made between Sikatuna and Legazpi is celebrated and commemorated annually and called the Sandugo Festival in Bohol. It involves a reenactment of the blood compact, a religious mass and parade on the streets and the search for the Miss Bohol beauty pageant.

Reference: Philippine News Agency


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