THE BORNEO IDENTITY

Kota Kinabalu Travel Blog

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The Bornean datus established the barangay monarchy system over the Philippine archipelago for more than 400 years from the year 1200 until the Spanish conquest in 1570.

"Due to the rapacity of the ruler of Borneo, named Datu Makatunaw, ten datus ventured to escape his grasp by boarding their long ships called barangays in order to seek out new lands. These men, whose names were Datu Bangkaya, Datu Puti, Datu Sumakwel, Datu Paiborong, Datu Paduhinogan, Datu Dumangsol, Datu Libay, Datu Dumangsil, Datu Domalogdog, and Datu Balensuela, eventually became the founders of the pre-colonial Philippine civilization. Upon sailing the seas, they in time reached a couple of islands in the Philippines called Panay and Sinugbuhan.
Aetas
These islands were under the rule of an Aeta “big-man” named Marikudo. These pygmy-like bands that practiced hunting and gathering as well as slash and burn farming (kaingin), was initially in terror of the Borneans. However, Datu Puti, who was the leader of the group, sought a peaceful alliance and was therefore welcomed by the Aetas. Immediately, they forged trade relations with the natives exchanging their combs, hatchets, knives and copper swords (called kris) to the Aetas’ deer horns, boar teeth, bamboo baskets, and various maritime products.

To commemorate the new alliance, Marikudo invited his new associates for a feast under the thick, broad branches of his dapdap and the bounteous food was laid on banana leaves. The Borneans came wearing splendid accoutrements. The men wore kerchiefs wound 4 times around their heads, grandiose jewelry, sleeveless and collarless vests and various shirts.

Marikudo
The women wore their hairs parted in the middle and knotted in two like horns of a cow’s calf perched on each ear. They had long sleeved blouses and they had long, ornately colored skirts called tapis.

In this feast, the Datus negotiated the purchase of land and since the Aetas thought that the island was too large to farm, they agreed. The Aetas, who preferred the cover of forests and mountains, retreated to such areas (where they can still be found today), while the Datus divided portions of the island and thus founded the various clans of the Philippine culture."

This story written in Philippine History books and taught in Kasaysayan, Sibika at Kultura (History, Social & Culture Studies) classes in the elementary grades  had instilled in my young mind a fascination to travel to the land of Borneo and see where these mighty datus originated from.

Bornean datus purchasing land from the Aetas.
At Art Class in grade school, we would be asked by our teacher to draw the barangays(boats) used by the datus on their journey accross the Sulu Sea to Panay island, where we would put different bright vertical colors on the sails  typical of the sails of the Moro and badjao boats, and  complete the drawing with blue colors and contour lines to indicate waves on the ocean path of the datus on voyage. And while I was drawing, I aspired that one day, I will travel to the land of BORNEO as a sailor or trader. Today, I'm about to fulfill this travel wish not as a sailor or trader, but as a simple travbuddy.


 


Isabetlog says:
Interesting blog, Kuya Ted! Galing how you remember those school activities from way back! I can't remember squat!
Posted on: Sep 08, 2008
Mooks525 says:
The Aetas were the Afro-Asiatic Filipinos.
Posted on: Aug 29, 2008
tvillingmarit says:
Interesting blog, congrats being featured
Posted on: Aug 29, 2008
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The Bornean datus established the …
The Bornean datus established the…
Aetas
Aetas
Marikudo
Marikudo
Bornean datus purchasing land from…
Bornean datus purchasing land fro…
Moro vintas
Moro vintas
Mt Kinabalu
Mt Kinabalu
Sabah State Mosque
Sabah State Mosque
coastal highway to the north
coastal highway to the north
The Tip of Borneo
The Tip of Borneo
Sabah State Mosque floating on wat…
Sabah State Mosque floating on wa…
KK Seafront
KK Seafront
THE ATKINSON CLOCK
THE ATKINSON CLOCK
KK Seafront
KK Seafront
KK Seafront
KK Seafront
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Holding the bronze globe at Tanju…
Jesselton Hotel 1945
Jesselton Hotel 1945
Some pretty flower at Mt. Kinabalu…
Some pretty flower at Mt. Kinabal…
Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine Park
Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine Park
The Tip of Borneo
The Tip of Borneo
The Tip of Borneo(magkano kaya tip…
The Tip of Borneo(magkano kaya ti…
Lagoon at the tip of Borneo
Lagoon at the tip of Borneo
Tanjung Simpang Mengayau
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Jesselton Point
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Jesselton Point jetty wharf
Jesselton Point jetty wharf
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Pulao Sapi
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Pulao Manukan (Pulao Ayam) Chicke…
Tunku Abdul Rahman National Park
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Sabah Tourism
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Lok Kawi Wildlife Park - Show me t…
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@Filipino Market
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Mt.K
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Kinabalu National Park
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world's smallest orchid at Mt. Ki…
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Kundasang Valley at the foothills …
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Mt. K peak.
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