06 December 2013

Nineteenth Century Tondo, Manila

I'm currently reading "The Philippines" by a French traveler Jean Mallat published in 1846 and I am surprised of how he depicted the ninetieth century Tondo, Manila. It is a very sharp contrast to our common notion of Tondo today. Mallat writes: 

"Province of Tondo. Although included among the small ones, this province is nevertheless one of the richest, most industrious, most populated. In short it is one of the most important in the whole archipelago. This town swarms with mestizos and Chinese. The province of Tondo produces sugar in small quantity, a lot of fruits like mangoes, bananas, chicos, pineapple, and oranges. They also raise animals. Its industries are agriculture and manufacturing; it trades extensively in all the products of the Philippines. Moreover, Tondo is the only one where foreign businessmen are allowed to set themselves up. (p.121)" 

It's great to know that Tondo was once a center of commerce in the Philippines. I appreciate Tondo more now. I will never see‪#‎Tondo‬ the same way again.

The Philippines: History, Geography, Customs, Agriculture, Industry, and Commerce of the Spanish Colonies in Oceania. By Jean Mallat. Translated by Pura Santillan-Castrance. Manila: National Historical Commission, 1983. (French original published in 1846.) xiv, 528 pp. Tables, Index. N.p. (paper).


Anonymous said...

yay! nice to see you blogging again.

hee. :)

Layla said...

ooopsss! RA, this is me, Layla.

sorry didn't identify myself earlier.

Rah said...

thanks for the comment layla, always a pleasure to have you around.