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January 1, 2018

Magabe, Balayan, Batangas: Historical Data

Full transcription of the so-called “Historical Data” for the barrio of Magabe, Balayan, Batangas, the original scanned documents at the National Library of the Philippines Digital Collections not having OCR or optical character recognition properties. This transcription has been edited for grammar, spelling and punctuation where possible. The original pagination is provided for citation purposes.

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HISTORY AND CULTURAL LIFE OF MAGABE

1. The present official name of the barrio – Magabe

2. Popular name of the barrio present and past; derivations and meanings of these names.

a) Once, there lived an old man and a boy near a riverside who usually played among the plants taking some of the leaves and put water in it. Sometimes, he used it for watering their plants near their home. As years passed, the plants had almost covered the pathway of the people along the riverside. So, the old man decided to transplant them to another place where people couldn’t be bothered. He gathered all the shoots that had covered the pathway and transplanted them. As he was planting, a little boy saw him and asked why he was planting late in the evening. Because the old man did not pay attention to him, the boy shouted at the old man, “ma-ma” what are you doing there? It’s already “gabe” na. Everyone who passed by asked the same question to the old man, to which he answered, “Aba, gabe na pala.”

People were wondering about the rapid growth of the plants on the pathway. The curious people asked the name of the plant to the boy who saw the old man planting the plants. The boy told them that he called the attention of the old man “ma-ma” “gabe” na were the words of the boy. This was how the word Magabe was derived. Up to this time, the people call the barrio “Magabe.”

b) Sitios included within the territorial jurisdiction of the barrio:

1. Molino

2. Pinalayan

3. Taktak

3. Date of establishment – 1894

4. Original families – Crispino Magpantay & Prudencio Creag

5. List of tenientes from the earliest time to date:

1. Meliton Bahan

2. Faustino Martinez

3. Francisco Ilog

4. Eleuterio Venzon

5. Mariano Villarin

6. Felix Ramos

7. Pedro Maligaya

6. Story of old barrio or sitios within the jurisdiction that are now depopulated or extinct – None.

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7. Data on historical sites, structures, buildings, old ruins, etc. – None.

8. Important facts, incidents or events that took place:

(a) During the Spanish occupation
The parish priest, Fr. Polonio Bihis of Balayan, evacuated to Magabe. He officiated masses, baptisms, and marriages. Eugenio Bautista and son were killed by the Katipuneros.

(b) During the American occupation to World War II.
None.

(c) During and after the World War – None.

9. Measures and accomplishments toward rehabilitation and reconstruction following World War II – None.

10. Traditions, customs, and practices in domestic and social life; birth, baptism, courtship, marriage, death, burial, visits, festivals, punishments, and so forth.

(a) Birth – After delivery, the mother is placed on a bamboo bed. Near the bed, there is a stove with continuous flaming of the smoke. After the seventh day, the mother and child is bathed.



(b) Baptism – The child is brought to the church for baptism with the parents and sponsors. The godfather gives a gift to the child in the form of money or dress. They go home to the house of the child to have dinner.

(c) Courtship – The customs of courtship are the parents’ concern. Both parents have an agreement or contract that their child will be married although they are not in love with each other. The man should serve the family of the woman with a number of 2 to 5 years before they are married.

(d) Marriage – Both parties prepare for the wedding. They go to the church with the sponsors. After the wedding, they go out from the church, and upon arriving at the home of the bride, they are showered with rice or flowers. They go up together on the stairs. After the reception, the bride is taken to the house of the groom by the parents and grooms stays in the house of the bride for a day. The next day, the groom goes to his house to stay with the bride.

(e) Death – People who visit the dead give money to the family of the deceased. It is being watched for 24 hours. The people who pay a visit to the dead are served by the relatives of the one who died.

(f) Burial – Parents, relatives, and friends bring the dead to the church, then to the cemetery. Those who go to the funeral will go back to the house of the deceased to have some drinks. Every night

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for nine nights, prayers are said in honor of the dead. At the ninth day, they have a little feast. They invite friends to attend the celebration.

(g) Visit – The visitor is entertained by the hostess. They are offered drinks or cigarettes. If the visitor is younger than the host, he kisses the hands of the old folks with bent knees.

(h) Festival – They prepare pigs to be slaughtered. People are served as they go in the house. Most people hear mass during fiestas. They wear their best dresses.

(i) Punishment – When a person commits a crime, he is referred to the barrio lieutenant. Then, he is taken by the civil guards to the justice of the place; when he is found guilty, he is put into prison.

11. Myths, legends, beliefs, interpretations, superstitions, origin of the world, land, mountains and caves, seas, lakes, rivers, plants, trees, animals, sun, moon, stars, eclipses, earthquakes, lightning, and thunder; first man and woman; birth of twins or more sickness, witchcraft, magic, derivations, etc.

(a) In May, when the winds begin to blow from the sea, the farmer starts to work on his farm. In June, when the first heavy rains have fallen on the lowlands, the planting season is at hand and farmers begin plowing their fields. Before they transplant the seedlings, they put a cross in the middle of the field for filing the seedlings before they are planted so that the harvest will be productive.

(b) Sun and stars are used to predict time. When the sun is just above the head of any person, it is 12:00; when it goes to the west, it is 3:00.

(c) When earthquakes occur, there is poor harvest. When the sound comes from the eastern part, the belief is that there is a good harvest of the year, and if the sound comes from the western part, there is liability of the palay harvest.

(d) Darkness of the sky determines heavy rainfall. When there is bright red raised at the northern part, there is [a] storm or typhoon coming ahead.

(e) First man and woman – Juan Magahis and Sabina Causapin.

12. Popular songs, games and amusements:

(1) Popular songs:
Leron Leron Sinta Ang Maya
(2) Games and amusements:
Pempen San Pedro
12. Puzzles and riddles:

1. Twelve soldiers, two commanders – Clock

2. Kuwintas – kuwintas, magkabila ay butas
    Karmen – Karmen, magkabila ay hapin – Kuwintas

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14. Proverbs and sayings:

1. Hindi nakikilala ang galling at anyo
    Kung hindi tutupad sa ipinangako.

2. Natanda ay nagarbo.

3. Nasikat si patato
    Nabali ang pasimano.

15. (a) Time is determined by the position of the sun.

      (b) The calendar is in the form of books with dates, days, and names of persons.

16. Other folktales – None

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Notes and references:
Transcribed from “History and Cultural Life of Magabe,” 1953, online at the National Library of the Philippines Digital Collections.

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