Teresa F. Magbanua

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Teresa Magbanua - the "Joan of Arc of the Visayas."

Teresa Magbanua y Ferraris (b. October 13, 1868 - d. August 1947), a native of Pototan, Iloilo, was known as the "Joan of Arc of the Visayas" for her display of courage, patriotism and military tactics. She was the brother of Gen. Pascual Magbanua who died mysteriously.



Magbanua was born in Pototan, Iloilo on October 13, 1868 to Alejandra Ferraris and Juan Magbanua, a judge. When she was young, she became involved in boys’ fights and even joined her brothers in their brawls with other kids from other towns. Teresa likewise enjoyed climbing trees, swimming in the Jaluar river, and riding carabaos and horses. She liked being with boys than girls.


Because of her boyish nature, her parents became concerned and so in 1885, they sent her to the College of San Jose in Jaro, Iloilo to study. Then, later on, they sent her to Santa Rosa College in Manila and then to Colegio de Santa Catalina to be prepared as a teacher. They also will that she learn how to be a graceful lady through such kind of education.

Finally, in 1894, she received her certificate as a teacher from Colegio de Dona Cecilia. From that, she soon taught at different campuses in Panay.

Marriage and Farm Life

Magbanua soon married a rich landowner hailing from Sara, Iloilo, Alejandro Baldero. Because of that, she stopped teaching and began working at their farm. Through that, she became acquainted with farm life such as firing a pistol and riding a horse.

Contributions to the Revolution

With her two brothers in the Revolution, Teresa decided to join the revolution at the age of 28. Even though her husband was against it, she still pursued it.

She led men revolutionaries and even won the battle near Sara, Iloilo – known as the Battle of Sap-ong. Due to this, Martin Teofilo Delgado, the commander-in-chief in Visayas, applauded her fierceness and abilities to deal with the military, then allowing her to continue leading the troops in Panay.

On February 11, 1899, she, together with her troops, fought with the Americans. On March of that same year, they also battled in Balantang-Tacas-Jibao-an. That particular battle which occurred in March 10 became famous because the Visayan troops eventually killed 400 Americans and Teresa exuded her valor and might despite what others may perceive for a woman at that time.

Consequently, not long after the war with the Japanese, she was widowed and remained childless. Nay Isa, as her comrades called her, reached the point of selling her possessions in Iloilo to assist in financing the guerillas. She then went off to Mindanao (in Pagadian, Zamboanga del Sur) to live with her sister, Maria. There, in August 1947, she died at the age of 78.

Japanese Era

In this time, her husband died and left her with no children. She sold her property in Iloilo, during the Japanese invasion and helped finance the guerilla activities of the Filipinos. She migrated to Pagadian, Zamboanga del Sur where she lived with her sister. On August 1947, she died at the age of 78.


  • Quirino, Carlos. Who's who in Philippine History. Manila: Tahanan Books, 1995.
  • Teresa Magbanua: "Visayas Joan of Arc". [1]

External Links

  • “Filipino Women Revolutionaries.” The Philippine History Site. [2] (Accessed on October 2, 2011).
  • Quizon, Mona Lisa. “Teresa Magbanua: The Visayan Joan of Arc.” National Historical Commission of the Philippines. [3] (Accessed on October 2, 2011).
  • “Teresa Magbanua.” Philippine Revolution. [4] (Accessed on October 2, 2011).



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