Early Stages of Filipino Literature: Pre-Spanish Period

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12 Questions

Which traditional Philippine poem consists of 4 lines with 8 syllables per line and a rhyming scheme?


During which event was the war of independence waged by Katipunan against the Spaniards?

Revolutionary Movement

Who founded La Solidaridad with the aim of opening the eyes of Spaniards to the colonization of Filipinos?

Graciano Lopez-Jaena

Which musical form was one of the most popular art forms during the Spanish Period?


What does Prose refer to in writing compared to poems?

Prose does not follow a metrical structure

Which Filipino author wrote 'Noli Me Tangere' and 'El Filibusterismo' which were part of the Propaganda Movement?

Jose Rizal

What type of literary works make up the Filipino Literature during the Pre-Spanish Period?

Epics, Legends, Myths, Folklore, Salawikain, Sawikain, Bugtong, Oyayi

Which type of literature from the Pre-Spanish Period is mainly focused on gods and goddesses?


In Filipino Literature, what does the term 'Sawikain' refer to?

Idiomatic Expressions

What purpose do Oyayi or Hele serve in Filipino Literature?

To help children sleep

During the Pre-Spanish Period of Filipino Literature, what does the term 'Bugtong' refer to?


'Legends' in Filipino Literature are based on what kind of events or origins?

Based on reality events or origins

Study Notes

Types of Traditional Filipino Poems and Songs

  • Corrido: a song about the lives of saints, oppression, history, daily lives of peasants, and socially relevant issues, with 8 syllables per line.
  • Awit: a song about the lives of saints, with 20 syllables per line, sung during religious processions.
  • Dalit: a Philippine traditional poem with 4 lines, 8 syllables per line, with a rhyming scheme.
  • Cenakulo: a stage reenactment of the passion of Jesus Christ.
  • Pasyon: a written work about the life of Jesus Christ.
  • Moro: a melodrama centering on the fight between Muslims and Christians.
  • Duplo and Karagatan: a political debate that occurs during the 9th night of the dead, with "Duplo" being skilled and well-trained participants, and "Karagatan" being amateur.

Notable Events during the Spanish Period

  • Popularity of Florante at Laura by Francisco Baltazar.
  • Exposure of Filipinos to Europe's liberal idealism.

Propaganda Movement

  • Started by "The Illustrados" to expose the evils of Spanish administration and demand freedom and equality for Filipinos.
  • Key figures involved:
    • Jose Rizal: wrote Noli Me Tangere and El Filibustersimo.
    • Marcelo H. Del Pilar: wrote essays and editorials in Diariong Tagalog and founded "Diariong Tagalog".
    • Graciano Lopez-Jaena: founded La Solidaridad, which aimed to open the eyes of Spaniards to their colonizing the Filipinos.

Revolutionary Movement

  • War of independence waged by Katipunan against the Spaniards from 1896 to 1898.
  • Katipunan was founded by Andres Bonifacio, who was inspired by Rizal's novels.
  • Kalayaan: the newspaper of the society, which published articles in Tagalog.

Definition of Literature

  • Literary works delivered writtenly or verbally with artistic and intellectual values.
  • Reflects culture, society, and lifestyle.

Early Stages of Filipino Literature

Pre-Spanish Period

  • Oral Teaching (Word of Mouth): storytelling and sharing their own literature with moral values.
  • Key forms of literature:
    • Epics: long narratives about heroes, particularly male, that are chanted during occasions.
    • Legends: origin of something, based on reality, told in a fictitious manner.
    • Myths: not proven to exist in real life and entirely fictional, mostly about gods and goddesses.
    • Folklore: stories by a particular group of people that are passed down through generations.
    • Salawikain (Proverbs): concise statements that teach moral lessons about everyday life.
    • Sawikain (Idiomatic Expressions/Idioms): statements that are not meant literally, holding different meanings to their literal meaning.
    • Bugtong (Riddles): statements that describe something that poses as problems to be solved.
    • Oyayi or Hele (Lullaby): sung to children to help them sleep.

Spanish Period

  • Literature was centered on Christian Faith, with religious matters written in prose as novena and prayer books, biographies of saints, tales, and novels.

Explore the literary works from the Pre-Spanish Period of Filipino Literature, including oral teachings, epics, and legends. Discover how these writings reflect the culture, society, and lifestyle of the early Filipino people.

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