Santor, Tanauan, Batangas: Historical Data - Batangas History, Culture and Folklore Santor, Tanauan, Batangas: Historical Data - Batangas History, Culture and Folklore

Santor, Tanauan, Batangas: Historical Data

Historical Data graphic
Historical data from the National Library of the Philippines.

Full transcription of the so-called “Historical Data” for the barrio of Santor in the City of Tanauan, 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.

[p. 1]

Part One: History

1. Present official name of the barrio: Santor.

2. Popular name of the barrio: Santor.

a. Present and past: Santor.
b. Derivation and meaning:
A long time ago, the patron saint of the barrio was San Pastor. One day, some children were playing along the road. A Spanish Civil Guard came along; he asked the children what the name of the barrio was. The children misunderstood him and answered, “San Pastor.” The guard repeated over and over, “Santor,” hence, the barrio came to be known as Santor.

3. Date of establishment: Unknown.

4. Original families:

Florentino PerezJacobo Gonzales
Juan LantingGaspar Motilla [Montilla?]
Mauricio Castillo

5. List of Tenientes:

Juan Trinidad
Francisco Perez
Anastacio Narvacan
Roque Lanting
Graciano Punzalan
Espiridion Narvacan
Benito Mercado
Jose Baradas
Diego Baradas
Manuel Mercado
Doroteo Alcazar
Silvestre Punzalan
Melecio Mabaga
Marcelo Alcantara
Jose Baradas
Martin Pachica
Eleuterio Villa
Hugo Perez

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

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:
During the year 1873, Aque, a bandit, was hanged at the place where he committed the crime. (According to information, a Spanish Civil Guard was killed by Aque and his followers. Aque was caught and sentenced to die. He was hanged at a hilly part of the barrio, the place where he actually committed the crime.

b. During the American occupation to World War II: None.

c. During and after World War II:
1. In February 1945, many houses were burned by Japanese soldiers; only 38 remained.
2. Plants were destroyed and animals confiscated by Japanese soldiers.
3. Eight persons were massacred; Anastacio

[p. 2]

Punzalan, Sotero Castillo, Maria Andaya, Maximo Balahadia, Ignacio Balahadia, Eusebio Quimio, Jorge Quimio, and Eusebio Engreso.
4. Sometime during February of 1945, a PC patrol machine-gunned the barrio wherein one civilian was killed. It was believed by the PC soldiers that dissidents were hiding in the barrio.

9. (a) Destruction of lives, properties and institutions during wars especially in 1896-1900 and 1941-1945:

1. No person was killed; no properties were destroyed during the war of 1896-1900.
2. 1941-1945: During the month of February, 1945, practically all the houses in the barrio were burned, (only 38 were left) and livestock [was] confiscated by Japanese soldiers. On February 15 and 18 of the same year, Sotero Castillo and Jorge Quimio were massacred, respectively.
(b) Measures and accomplishments toward rehabilitation and reconstruction following World War II:
After liberation, the people started to build makeshift houses called “barong-barongs.” They resumed their former trades of calling and when they received their “War Damage Compensations,” they constructed new and better houses.

Part Two: Folkways

10. Traditions, customs and practices in domestic and social life: The present generation follows the good traits of their elders. The people are hardworking and peaceful.

Birth: When a child is born, it is customary among the parents to look up at once in a Tagalog almanac (“calendariong Tagalog”) the name of the child. Once a name is decided, they pick up the man or woman who will stand as sponsor in the baptism of the child.

Baptism: The sponsor or sponsors buy the baptismal gown for the child. The sponsor takes care also of the church fees and it is a must for him or her to give the child a gift, called popularly as “pakimkim.” The parents of the child prepare the best (within their means, or, they even sell or pawn properties to meet the expenses) feast to please the sponsors and visitors.

Courtship: Courtship in this barrio was not, in any way, different from that of the other barrios. In most cases, the parents of the man made arrangements with those of the girl. In some cases, the man and woman were allowed to talk to each other, but only in the presence of a chaperon who was usually the grandmother or the mother of the girl.

There was oftentimes the so-called “bayanihan” where the man had to ask his parents and friends to help him undertake such chores as plowing the field of his lady love’s parents, harvesting the crops, etc., just to win the affect-

[p. 3]

tion and favor of the girl and her parents.

There was also the so-called “pigurahan.” The parent of the man prepared food to be offered to the parents of the girl.

The “bulungan” came next. The parents of the man made arrangements with the girl’s parents. At this stage, the dowry, wedding date, etc., are talked over.

The “pangasawahan” came next. The man’s party brought bundles of select firewood, pails of water, cigarettes, buyo, and sometimes food.

Marriage, as of today, is performed by the priest. After marriage, the couple is not allowed to live together during the first four succeeding days and nights. The bride stays in the groom’s house while the groom stays in the bride’s house. At the lapse of the fourth day, they were allowed to live together.

Death: When one dies, his body, as of today, is lain in state at least twenty-four hours in his house. During the night, friends and neighbors offer prayers for the repose of his soul; oftentimes, parlor games are played during the whole night.

Burial: Before burial, the body is usually taken to the church to receive the last blessings from the local priest.

Nightly prayers are said and the fourth and ninth days, locally called “apatan” and “siyaman,” respectively, are observed with a little celebration. Parlor games such as “juego de frenda,” “duplohan,” and card games are played.

11. Myths: It was the belief of the barrio people that when they held the so-called “lutrina,” rain would come. This they did during the dry season or during long droughts so that they could start planting rice.


“The Sweet Tamarind”

Long ago, all the tamarind trees of the barrio of Santor bore sour fruits. The people couldn’t eat said fruits so that they were perplexed as to what to do with them. One day, an old man tried to water his tamarind tree with an aqueous solution of sugar. The following season, the tree bore sweet fruits. Henceforth, his neighbors followed suit, and thereafter, all the tamarinds now in Santor are sweet.


1. When a cat washes its face [while] facing the house, a visitor will come.
2. When a young girl sings before the stove, she will marry a widower.
3. When two or more marriages in the same family occur in the same year, ill luck may befall either of the couples.
4. It is believed that when “rigor mortis” does not set in a dead person, an immediate member of his family will die soon.

[p. 4]

1. When the “Southern Cross” stands perpendicularly at night, it is midnight.
2. When it rains on the first day of January, it is a sign that the month of January will be rainy; or, if it is a sunny day, January will be sunny or dry, too. This belief goes, too, with the twelve preceding days after the first. Supposing the second or third day is sunny, that means February or March will be sunny, too.
3. If the fruits of a tamarind are straight, they are sweet.
4. When [the] dawn is cold, the day will be warm.
5. When a person does not face the person talking to him, such [a] man is a traitor.
1. The soul of the dead visits the family on the fourth day.
2. A snake in the house is a sign of good omen.
3. When a baby is buried without the benefit of baptism, it is believed that the child becomes a “tiyanak.”
4. When the dogs howl at night, the “shadow of death” is around.

Origin of the world: God created the world. Of land: Land was also created by God. Of mountains: During the floods long ago, there were big waves. It is believed that those waves created the mountains. Rains: It is believed that the souls of the dead cry on All Souls Day; hence, All Souls Day is always rainy.

Wind: The wind and the storm are the breath of “Saint Lorenzo.”

First Man: The first man was created by God. He was Adam.

The First Woman: The first woman was Eva. She was extracted and was one of the ribs of Adam.

Birth of Twins: When a person or an expectant mother eats twin bananas, twin children will be born.


1. “Uhiya” is a sickness of babies which cannot be cured by physicians. There is a time when a person becomes angry with a child, talks to a child, and even laughs at a child that the child becomes sick. According to some old people, this sickness is called “uhiya.” The best cure for this is to apply the saliva or the chewed buyo of the person who made the child sick to the palm or bosom of the sick child. If the person cannot be located, a magician may then be called.

2. The magician gets a piece of alum, “tawas.” He crosses the alum on the palm, feet, and forehead of the child. He burns the alum in a

[p. 5]

flat iron. He pours some water on the fire and the alum. The alum forms some images, which the magician can interpret. He then asks the sick to drink some of the water, apply some of it on the affected part. This cures the sick child or person.

Magic: Many inhabitants in the locality confirm in the belief that at present, there are still some incantations or magical spell and words that help the people in their obstacles.

1. The “mutya” stone found in the jackfruit is good for women delivering a child. The stone is put in the mouth of the woman. It makes the woman deliver the child easily and soon.

2. There are some persons who know some magical words. When the words are said on the affected part, the affected part heals without surgery.

12. Popular Songs:

1. May flower offering songs:
“Virgen de Vino.”
2. For the dead babies:
Prayer from Trisahio: Santo, Santo, Señor.
3. For the dead adults:
Prayer-Desponso-Requimienternam Tonais Do Mine.
4. Kundiman songs:
Bituing Marikit, etc.

13. Games and Amusements:

1. Games for Children
a.  Patentiro [patintero]
b.  Piko
c.  Hide & Seek
d.  Softball
e.  Dawit-Use of fingers
f.  Siklot
g.  Sintak
h.  Pempen
i.  Hawk and chick
2. Games for adults:
a. Softball

14. Puzzles and Riddles:

1. Sister’s house has only one post.
2. My fish in Mariveles has the scales inside.
3. There, there but we do not see it.

15. Proverbs and Sayings:

1. He who believes in tales has no mind of his own. (Ang maniwala sa sabi-sabi ay walang bait sa sarili.)
2. The fish is caught through the mouth. (Ang isda’y sa bibig nahuhuli.)
3. Kapag may sinuksok ay may madudukot.
4. Ang panaho’y samantalahin, sapagka’t ginto ang kahambing.
5. Kahoy mang babad sa tubig, sa apoy ay huwag ilalapit, kapag nadagandang ng init, sapilitang magdirikit.
6. Bahaw man at magaling, daig ang bagong saing.
7. Kung ano ang masama sa iyo, ay huwag mong gagawin sa kapwa mo.
8. Ang tubig na matining, arukin mo at malalim.
9. Nasa Dios ang awa, nasa tao ang gawa.
10. Ang sipag ay daig ang agap.

16. Methods of Measuring Time; SPECIAL CALENDAR:

1. By the cross star. When the cross star shines

[p. 6]

perpendicularly, it is midnight.
2. By the balance stars. When the stars are parallel to each other, it is also midnight.
3. By the length of the shadow.
4. By the lapse of the smoking cigarettes.
5. By the length of cooking rice.
6. By the eyes of the cat.
7. By calculating the height of the sun in the horizon.
8. By the crowing of the cocks at night.
9. By the use of the watch.
10. By the clock.

17. Other folktales:

Mayflower Festivities in Santor

The people in Santor have a unique way of celebrating the Mayflower festivities. Like other barrios in the Municipality of Tanauan, Mayflower offering is celebrated with great zeal. Not less than forty pairs of either girls, boys, maidens, women or men from the barrio or other places, offer the flowers before [the] Virgin Mary during regular May days.

[The] The month before the actual celebration, the families who have volunteered to do the offering saved money, raised hogs and chickens and attend to the preparation of the things needed, so that the celebration might be grand. From twenty to forty pairs of barrio belles in their best garments and with beautifully decorated bouquets, assisted by musicians, parade to the chapel. The actual feasting commences from early morning, late at night, and the hosts offer breakfast, dinner, merienda, and supper to all visitors.

So much has been the interest in these festivities that even children married women, and young men are asked to join the offering and merriment. Fireworks and games are common during the Mayflower fests, so that this season is being awaited by every person in an early part of the year.

18. Information on books and documents of the Philippines and the names of their owners: None.

19. The names of the Filipino authors born or residing in the community, the titles and subjects of their works, whether printed or in manuscript form, and the names of the persons possessing them: None.


Information gathered by:
1. Mr. Ricardo Quimio
Notes and references:
Transcribed from “Report on the History and Cultural Life of the Barrio of Santor,” 1953, online at the National Library of the Philippines Digital Collections.
Next Post Previous Post