Tuy, Batangas: Historical Data Part Part IV - Batangas History, Culture and Folklore Tuy, Batangas: Historical Data Part Part IV - Batangas History, Culture and Folklore

Tuy, Batangas: Historical Data Part Part IV

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



[p. 10]

III. Courtship
1. When asking a girl to attend a party, the boy invites the parents of the girl first. When she attends parties, she is always accompanied by her mother or her mother’s designated chaperon.
2. If a young woman loves a girl, he asks for permission to visit her. The young man is sometimes accompanied by another young man.
3. The parents of the girl put the young man to a test. If he is accepted, he stays in the house of the girl and works for her parents. He repairs the house, works in the farm and in the house. This may last for a duration of time, say three or four months, depending upon the agreement. This custom is called “paninilbihan.”
4. The young man shows his love for a lady by an evening serenade. The parents of the girl ask the boy and his companions to enter the house. Then, they have singing.
5. Later, the boy sends the girl love letters to which the girl sends no reply. After at least a dozen letters, the girl writes the man a short note telling him to stop. If the boy persists, the girl gives many alibis.
6. The boy is then invited to visit the girl. After a number of visits, the man and the girl come to an agreement. This time, the parents of both parties speak for the children.
7. Usually, a feast is held when the marriage is celebrated.

IV. Marriage

1. Parents must sanction the marriage. Couples who marry against the wishes of the parents are liable to be disinherited.
2. The family of the groom is expected to shoulder all the expenses of the wedding.
3. The groom’s family usually prepares food and refreshments for the wedding. The feast is held in the home of the bride, although the latter lives in another place. The relatives of the groom do the serving and entertainment.
4. After the wedding and the feast, the groom is usually left in the house of the bride and the bride goes with the family of the groom. This is often not followed because in some cases, the couple goes for a honeymoon.
5. The lavishness of the feast depends upon the social standing of the couple being married.

[p. 11]

V. Death
1. Friends and relatives send flowers and visit the dead. Alms in the form of money are usually given to help the family.
2. The neighbors and friends help the family of the deceased. Some make wreaths and some help in the preparation of food. Still others help in the making of the grave.
3. The family of the deceased serve food.
4. Prayers for the deceased are set for nine consecutive nights. In the prayer, games are played to cheer the family of the deceased. On the ninth day, usually a feast is held. This feast is called the “pasiyam.”
5. The relatives of the dead abstain from enjoyment as dancing and playing.
6. Relatives of the dead wear black clothes or black armbands for a period of one year.
7. After the mourning period, the family celebrates a feast which is called the “babang luksa.”
8. On the fourth day after the burial, the family of the deceased takes a bath and cleans the house or fixes everything that has become topsy-turvy.
9. The last wishes of the dead are faithfully carried out so that the family may not be haunted.

VI. Burial

1. Relatives and friends follow the coffin of the dead to the cemetery.
2. Relatives usually are cautioned not to let tears drop on the dead, lest something unexpected may happen.
3. The younger members of the family are carried across the coffin so that they will not be haunted by the ghost.

VII. Festivals

A. Christmas
1. All the members of the family get together at Christmas and give gifts to one another.
2. On Christmas Eve, a mass [is] usually said and after the mass, the what we call “media noche” is held.
3. Children and even old folks visit godparents and relatives.
4. Christmas is not usually happily celebrated if no new clothes are worn.

[p. 12]

B. New Year
1. The family gets together on New Year’s Eve and wait for the midnight mass. After the mass, like on Christmas Eve, there is usually a “media noche.”
2. Children make what we call “bamboo cannon,” and they go around making lots of sun and noise. Sometimes, mischievous pranksters hide ladders and other things in the yard so that owners the next morning have to retrieve them.
3. Houses are cleaned very well to greet the New Year; food is cooked for the midnight feast and rice bins and water jars are filled to insure plenty during the coming year.

C. All Saints Day

1. In the afternoon, the people go to the cemetery to visit the graves of their faithful departed. The clean the surroundings of the tomb and give it a coat of fresh paint. They bring flowers, wreaths and candles to decorate the tomb.
2. Masses are said for the dead.
3. At night, groups of young people go around asking for alms in the form of “suman,” bananas, eggs, chickens, or money. They sing songs about the suffering of Christ, Our Lord, usually called “Pitong Sakit.”

D. St. John’s Day

1. Children and their elders take a bath in the river.
2. Children douse all passers-by with water to commemorate the day of St. John, the Baptist.

E. Easter and Lent

1. During the Lenten period, the people refrain themselves from too much enjoyment as dancing, picnics, and the like.
2. The “Pabasa” is usually held during the Holy Week.
3. On Palm Sunday, people go to church to have palms blessed by the priest. Little children participate in the “Hosanna.”
4. On Holy Friday, the “Siete Palabras” are held to commemorate the seven last words uttered by Our Lord.
5. On Easter Sunday, we have what we call “Hallelujah.”

[p. 13]

6. On Easter Sunday, when the bell is rung and “Gloria” is shouted, children are told to jump so that they will grow tall.

Superstitious Beliefs

Man as time goes on continues to improve and learn. Yet, man’s progress in education has not succeeded in wiping away these prevalent customs and superstitious beliefs. Among the superstitious beliefs are the following:

I. Marriage
1. The bride must not fit on the wedding gown prior to the marriage, otherwise the marriage shall not be continued.
2. To insure prosperity and security, the bride and the groom must have money in their pockets at the time of the wedding.
3. In any wedding ceremony, the party who desires to be dominant in the family must do any of the following:
a. To step on the foot of the other party at the time of the ring ceremony.
b. To press tightly on the hand of the other party at the said part of the ceremony.
c. To be first to go out of the church after the ceremony.
d. To be the first one to reach the house, they will first go after the ceremony.
4. To insure happiness throughout the marriage life, the couple, upon ascending the stairway of the house, must before being given anything else, be fed with something sweet.
5. In going to the house of the groom, the bride must not be accompanied by any member of the family, otherwise she will not know how to deal equally [and] fairly with her in-laws.
6. In order that the newly-married couple may be blessed with many children, pots, plates, and other wares are to be broken after the wedding ceremony.
II. For a Woman on the Family Way
1. A woman on the family way shall [not?] stand by the doorway, otherwise she shall undergo [a] difficult delivery.
2. If a woman sees her clothes on herself, she stands the danger of having a child with closed buttocks.
3. If she goes under the house in the late afternoon, she must get out of it directly looking backwards, else she shall undergo a painful delivery.

[p. 14]

4. The woman on the family we must avoid walking under a roof and her husband shall avoid wearing a necktie, else the cord of the child shall be coiled around its neck.
5. To insure a prompt and painless delivery, the midwife shall put a ladle at her back.
III. Baptism
1. The sponsor must see to it and make sure that he goes out of the church ahead of anyone with a child to insure a bright and prosperous future for the child.
2. In order that the child may inherit the good traits of the godparents, the latter must infuse into the child’s head while the child is being baptized.
IV. In Planting
1. To insure a progressive harvest, the stems of the plants must be allowed to fall.
2. The grains or seeds to be planted must be removed to the field at midnight in order that these plants would not be easily destroyed by animals.
3. While planting banana stalks, the planter must not look up in order that the banana plants may not grow tall.
4. While planting watermelon, the planter who desires to have the watermelon very red must chew betel nuts while planting.
V. In Cooking
1. Anyone who sings in front of the stove while cooking shall be married to a widow or a widower.
2. If the fire produces a laughing sound, a visitor is expected.
3. If there are fire streaks under the pot or [blurred word], money or [a] visitor is expected on that day.
4. While the rice is being cooked, the ladle cannot be struck down into it, otherwise, that rice when eaten shall cause stomach ache to anyone who eats it.
VI. In Eating
1. Yes, while eating, a spoon falls, a lady visitor is expected; if the fork falls, a male visitor is expected; and if a knife falls, an unexpected visitor is coming.
2. If there are 13 at the table while eating, one must give way, else something bad may happen.


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