Today in Philippine history, May 6, 1662, Governor de Lara ordered abandonment of forts in Zamboanga, Ternate

Thursday May 05, 2016 ()

On May 6, 1662, a council presided over by Governor-general Manrique de Lara resolved to abandon the fort of Zamboanga, La Sabanilla and Iligan in Mindanao, and Ternate in the Moluccas and ordered its troops to withdraw to Manila. The concentration of Spanish forces in Manila was in hurried preparation for its defense due to the treat of invasion of Chinese corsair, Koxinga (or Keu-Seng). The fort of Surigao, then called Caraga was the only one preserved.

Statue of Koxinga
(Statue of Koxinga)

Manila was in fearful panic on account of the claim of Koxinga that the realm of the Filipinas should render him homage and be declared his tributary under the penalty of his going with his squadrons to destroy the Spaniards as he had done with the Dutch expelling from from Formosa (present day Taiwan). This embassy was brought to Manila by the Dominican father Fray Victorio Ricci (Riccio).

Consequently, there were indignation against the Chinese residents of Manila which resulted in a brief Chinese insurrection but was later subdued. Eventually, the Chinese were expelled from the country as a precaution that the Chinese might come to aid Kue-seng.

The abandonment of forts left Mindanao and the Visayan islands in unprotected state, exposed to the vengeance of the Moros, who bore moral hatred for having become Christians.

Upon news that the Spaniards were involved in so tremendous conflict made the Moros in the south, once again, masters of land and sea.

The Datus of Sulu, Tawi-Tawi, Lacay-Lacay, and Tuptup, equipped about 60 vessels, and, dividing their forces into several small squadrons, sacked and burned the many villages including Poro, Baybay, Sogor, Cabalian, Basey, Dangajon, Guinobatan, and Capul. They went even to the mountains in pursuit of the Spaniards and Christian natives; and all whom they caught were carried away as captives, killing many of all ages.


  1. The Philippines Volume II, John Foreman, Filipiniana Book Guild, 1906
  2. The Philippine Islands, 1493-1803, Volume XLI, 1691-1700, Emma Blair, AH Clark Company, Ohio, 1906
  3. Proto credit:


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