Code of Kalantiaw

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The Code of Kalantiaw was a mythical legal code in the epic story Maragtas. It is said to have been written in 1433 by Datu Kalantiaw, a chief on the island of Negros in the Philippines. It was actually written in 1913 by Jose E. Marco as a part of his historical fiction Las antiguas leyendas de la Isla de Negros (Spanish, "The Ancient Legends of the Island of Negros"), which he attributed to a priest named José María Pavón.

In 1917, the historian Josué Soncuya wrote about the Code of Kalantiaw in his book Historia Prehispana de Filipinas ("Prehispanic History of the Philippines") where he moved the location of the Code's origin from Negros to the Panay province of Aklan because he suspected that it may be related to the Ati-atihan festival. Other authors throughout the 20th century gave credence to the story and the code.

In 1965, then University of Santo Tomas doctoral candidate William Henry Scott began an examination of prehispanic sources for the study of Philippine history. Scott eventually demonstrated that the code was a forgery committed by Marco. When Scott presented these conclusions in his doctoral dissertation, defended on 16 June 1968 before a panel of eminent Filipino historians which included Teodoro Agoncillo, Horacio de la Costa, Marcelino Foronda, Meceredes Grau Santamaria, Nicolas Zafra and Gregorio Zaide, not a single question was raised about the chapter which he had called The Contributions of Jose E. Marco to Philippine historiography. Scott later published his findings debunking the code in his book Prehispanic Source Materials for the Study of Philippine History.<ref>Template:Harvnb</ref> Filipino historians later removed the code from future literature regarding Philippine history.<ref>Template:Harvnb</ref> When Antonio W. Molina published a Spanish version of his The Philippines Through the Centuries as Centuries as historia de Filipinas (Madrid, 1984), he replaced the Code with one sentence: "La tésis doctoral del historador Scott desbarate la existencia misma de dicho Código" (The doctoral dissertation of the historian Scott demolishes the very existence of the Code).<ref>Template:Harvnb</ref>

Philippine historian Teodoro Agoncillo describes the Code as "a disputed document".<ref>Template:Harvnb.</ref> Some history texts continue to present it as historical fact.<ref>Template:Harvnb.</ref> Struggle for Freedom (subtitled A textbook on Philippine History) says, "Reproduced herein is the entire Code of Klaintiaw for your critical examination and for you to decide on its veracity and accuracy."<ref>Template:Harvnb.</ref> The story is still believed by people in the central provinces due to mis-education.

Contents

Laws of the Code of Kalantiaw

Below is the English translation of the code.

Article I

You shall not kill, neither shall you steal, neither shall you do harm to the aged, lest you incur the danger of death. All those who infringe this order shall be condemned to death by being drowned in the river, or in boiling water.

Article II

You shall obey. Let all your debts with the headman be met punctually. He who does not obey shall receive for the first time one hundred lashes. If the debt is large, he shall be condemned to thrust his hand in boiling water thrice. For the second time, he shall be beaten to death.

Article III

Obey you: let no one have women that are very young nor more than he can support; nor be given to excessive lust. He who does not comply with, obey, and observe this order shall be condemned to swim for three hours for the first time and for the second time, to be beaten to death with sharp thorns.

Article IV

Observe and obey; let no one disturb the quiet of the graves. When passing by the caves and trees where they are, give respect to them. He who does not observe this shall be killed by ants, or beaten to death with thorns.

Article V

You shall obey; he who exchanges for food, let it be always done in accordance with his word. He who does not comply, shall be beaten for one hour, he who repeats the offense shall be exposed for one day among ants.

Article VI

You shall be obliged to revere sights that are held in respect, such as those of trees of recognized worth and other sights. He who fails to comply shall pay with one month's work in gold or in honey.

Article VII

These shall be put to death; he who kills trees of venerable appearance; who shoot arrows at night at old men and women; he who enters the houses of the headmen without permission; he who kills a shark or a streaked cayman.

Article VIII

Slavery for a doam (a certain period of time) shall be suffered by those who steal away the women of the headmen; by him who keep ill-tempered dogs that bite the headmen; by him who burns the fields of another.

Article IX

All these shall be beaten for two days: who sing while traveling by night; kill the Manaul; tear the documents belonging to the headmen; are malicious liars; or who mock the dead.

Article X

It is decreed an obligation; that every mother teach secretly to her daughters matters pertaining to lust and prepare them for womanhood; let not men be cruel nor punish their women when they catch them in the act of adultery. Whoever shall disobey shall be killed by being cut to pieces and thrown to the caymans.

Article XI

These shall be burned: who by their strength or cunning have mocked at and escaped punishment or who have killed young boys; or try to steal away the women of the elders.

Article XII

These shall be drowned: all who interfere with their superiors, or their owners or masters; all those who abuse themselves through their lust; those who destroy their anitos (religious icons) by breaking them or throwing them down.

Article XIII

All these shall be exposed to ants for half a day: who kill black cats during a new moon; or steal anything from the chiefs or agorangs, however small the object may be.

Article XIV

These shall be made slave for life: who have beautiful daughters and deny them to the sons of chiefs, and with bad faith hide them away.

Article XV

Concerning beliefs and traditions; these shall be beaten: who eat the diseased flesh of beasts which they hold in respect, or the herb which they consider good, who wound or kill the young of the Manaul, or the white monkey.

Article XVI

The fingers shall be cut-off: of all those who break anitos of wood and clay in their alangans and temples; of those who destroy the daggers of the catalonans(priest/priestess), or break the drinking jars of the latter.

Article XVII

These shall be killed: who profane sites where anitos are kept, and sites where are buried the sacred things of their diwatas and headmen. He who performs his necessities in those places shall be burned.

Article XVIII

Those who do not cause these rules to be obeyed: if they are headmen, they shall be put to death by being stoned and crushed; and if they are agorangs they shall be placed in rivers to be eaten by sharks and caymans.

See also

Commentary on Code of Kalantiaw

Code is a set of standards or norms with peculiarity character. Originally, it is a socio-political in nature and character to resolve conflicts in a certain community. The word itself came to its usage and existence during the primitive or prehistoric period of the Philiipines. The first written code was the Kalantiaw. According to the tarsila among Iranuns, the term Kalantiaw was a name of a datu who ruled ancient Aninipay now Panay. He was of Bornean (Burunai in Iranun terminology)

Notes

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References

Topics on Philippine Mythology and Folklore
General: Religion · Creation stories
Supreme deities: Bakunawa · Bathala · Kan-Laon
The Pantheon and the Diwata: Aman Sinaya · Amihan · Ibong Adarna · Kumakatok · Maria Cacao · Maria Makiling · Maria Sinukuan · Mayari · Sarimanok · Tala
Epic heroes: Amaron · Bernardo Carpio · Datu Daya · Irong-Irong · Juan Tamad · Kalantiaw · Lam-ang · Malakas and Maganda · Princess Urduja
Historical people: Dios Buhawi · Francisco Dagohoy · Papa Isio · Pulajans
Historical events: Dagohoy Revolt · Massacre at Dolores · Negros Revolution
Belief systems: Anito · Code of Kalantiaw · Gabâ · Pamahiin · Pulajan religion
Spiritual leaders: Albularyo · Babaylan · Datu · Hilot · Mambabarang · Mangkukulam
Sacred places: Mount Apo · Mount Arayat · Mount Banahaw · Mount Kanlaon · Mount Lantoy · Mount Makiling · Mount Pinatubo
Legendary objects: Agimat · Anito · Code of Kalantiaw · Gintong Salakot
Legendary creatures: Alan · Aswang · Batibat · Diwata · Duwende · Ekek · Hantu Demon · Higante · Kapre · Manananggal · Manaul · Nuno sa punso · Pugot · Sigbin · Sirena · Siyokoy · Tikbalang · Tiyanak
Literary works: Ang Mundo ni Andong Agimat · Biag ni Lam-ang · Code of Kalantiaw · Hinilawod · Ibong Adarna · Juan Tamad · Maragtas · Mga Kuwento ni Lola Basyang (The Stories of Grandma Basyang) · The Mythology Class
Literary sources: Philippine literature · Philippine folk literature · Philippine epic poetry · Cebuano literature · Hiligaynon literature · Ifugao literature· Ilokano literature · Mindanao literature · Tagalog literature · Visayan literature · Waray literature