1521, Mar 16. A Spanish expedition, sailing across the Pacific Ocean from east to west, and led by the Portuguese Ferdinand Magellan (died Apr 27, 1521) lands on Homonhon Island east of Samar with three small ships, named the Concepcion, Trinidad and Victoria. Magellan calls the place San Lazaro Island since March 16 is Saint Lazarus day.
1521, Mar 28. Directing his ships southwestward, Magellan reaches Limasawa Island, south of Leyte. It is ruled by Rajah Kulambo, who becomes Magellan's friend.
1521, Mar 29. To seal the friendship between Magellan and Rajah Kulambo, they solemnize a blood compact. This is the first recorded blood compact in Philippine history.
1521, Mar 31. The first mass on Philippine soil is celebrated on Limasawa.
1521, Apr 7. After sailing to Cebu Island, Magellan enters a new blood compact with the local chieftain, Rajah Humabon.
1521, Apr 27. Magellan dies in a battle with Lapu-Lapu, chieftain of Mactan, an island near Cebu.
1525. Spain sends an expedition under Juan Garcia Jofre de Loaysa to the Philippines. The expedition expects to find gold and spices but fails to do so. Loaysa and many members of his crew die in the Philippines.
1526. Spain sends a third expedition to the Philippines under the leadership of Juan Cabot. This expedition never reaches the archipelago as three years are wasted in South America, trying to find a new route to the East.
1527. The fourth expedition sent by Spain to The Country is under the command of Alvaro de Saavedra. It is the first Spanish expedition starting from Mexico. It reaches Mindanao but on the way to Cebu Saavedra's ship is carried by strong winds to the Moluccas.
1529. Saavedra's expedition returns to Spain without Saavedra who died on the way home.
1536. The Loaysa expedition returns to Spain. One of its survivors is Andres de Urdaneta, its chronicler.
1543, Feb 2. The leader of the most successful Spanish expedition after Magellan, Ruy Lopez de Villalobos (died Apr 4, 1546) arrives in the archipelago. He names the islands the Philippines in honor of the son of King Charles I, Philip II (1556-1598) of Spain. Villalobos reaches Sarangani Island off the eastern coast of Mindanao and settles there for 8 months. But because of the scarcity of food, the expedition is forced to leave the place and sails to the Moluccas where Villalobos dies.
1565, Feb 13. With four ships and 380 men, Miguel Lopez de Legaspi arrives in the Philippines.
1565, May 8. The Island of Cebu is surrendered to Legaspi by its ruler King Tupas. Legaspi establishes the first permanent Spanish settlement on Cebu and becomes the first Spanish Governor-General. By his order, tributes are collected from all Filipino males aged 19 to 60.
1568. The Portuguese, under the command of General Gonzalo de Pereira, attack Cebu and blockade its port.
1570. The Portuguese again attack the colony and are repulsed. The series of attacks stems from Portugal's claim to the territory based on the provision of the Treaty of Tordisillas entered into by Spain and Portugal on June 7, 1474, in which their respective spheres of influence, trade and conquest were defined. The Portuguese believe that the Philippines falls within their sphere.
1570, May. Legaspi sends an expedition under the leadership of Martin de Goiti to Manila. Manila is ruled by Rajah Suliman, whose friendship is won by de Goiti.
1571, May 19. Rajah Suliman wages war against the Spaniards due to a move by de Goiti which he mistakes for an assault. De Goiti's army defeats Suliman's troops and occupies the town.
1571, Jun 24. Legaspi establishes his government in Manila and proclaims it the capital of the Philippines, calling it the "distinguished and ever loyal city".
1572, Aug 20. Legaspi dies and Guido de Lavezares (died 1575) succeeds him as governor. Lavezares extends colonization to the Bicol region.
1574, Nov 23. The Chinese pirate captain Limahong attacks Manila but the Spaniards win with the help of the Filipinos.
1574, Dec 2. Limahong again attacks Manila, this time with 1,500 soldiers, but cannot conquer the city.
1574, Dec. In Tondo (now a district of Manila) Lakandula leads a short revolt against the Spanish.
1580. The Spanish King Philip II receives the throne of Portugal upon the death of the Portuguese King Sebastian. This puts an end to the Portuguese harassment of the Philippine archipelago.
1580. The Spaniards institute forced labor on all male natives aged 16 to 60.
1583, Aug. A great fire in Manila which starts from the candles around the bier of governor Penalosa.
1589. The Spaniards establish the first school in the Philippines, the College of San Ignacio.
1600. The Dutch attack the archipelago in a tactical offensive during the European war between Spain and the Netherlands.
1600. Governor Sebastian Hurtado de Corcuera begins collecting the bandala from the natives. Bandala is an annual quota of products assigned to the natives for compulsory sale to the government.
1600. The Galleon trade between Manila and Acapulco, Mexico begins. But Manila serves merely as a transshipment port for the exchange of goods between Spain and Mexico on the one side and China on the other. Silver from Mexico is traded for any kind of Chinese merchandise. Because of the Galleon trade's quick returns, Spain lacks interest in developing the Philippine economy during the first 200 years of its occupation.
1603. Chinese insurrection in Manila.
1622. An early revolt takes place in Bohol. It is headed by Tamblot, a babaylan or priest of the native religion. Revolts in Leyte, Samar and Panay follow, all protesting the collection of tributes.
1744. One of the most successful revolts in Philippine history breaks out, once more in Bohol, and provides the island a kind of independence from the Spaniards for the following 85 years. The first leader of the revolt is Francisco Dagohoy.
1754, May 15. Mt Taal emits magma and destroys the towns of Lipa, Sala, Tanauan and Talisay.
1762, Sep 22. In a side encounter of the European Seven Years War, the British attack Manila with 13 vessels and 6,830 men under the command of General William Draper and Admiral Samuel Corning. The British win the battle and occupy the city.
1762, Oct 5. The British take control of the Philippines and Darsonne Drake becomes Governor-General. The British open the colony to international trade and ultimately change its economic life.
1762, Dec 14. A revolt under the leadership of Diego Silang (Dec 16, 1730 - May 28, 1763) breaks out in the Ilocos region.
1763, May 28. The revolt ends as Diego Silang is assassinated by his former friend Miguel Viscos.
1763, Feb 10. The Treaty of Paris between England, Spain and France is signed, ending the Seven Years War in Europe as well as the British occupation of the Philippines.
1774, Nov 9. Parishes are secularized by order of King Charles III of Spain. Natives are also permitted to enter the Catholic priesthood.
1808, May. French Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte installs his brother Joseph as King of Spain. French-influenced liberals support the king but the people do not.
1809, Jan 22. As an effect of the appointment of Joseph Bonaparte as King of Spain, all Spanish colonies including the Philippines are made integral parts of Spain by the Spanish Central Junta. Filipinos are given the privileges of Spanish citizenship as well as representation in the Spanish Cortes (parliament).
1812, Mar 19. The Spanish Cortes promulgates the Cadiz Constitution. It is a liberal constitution, vesting sovereignty in the people, recognizing the equality of all men and the individual liberty of the citizen, and granting the right of suffrage, but providing for a hereditary monarchy and for Catholicism as the state religion.
1812, Sep 24. The first Philippine delegates to the Spanish Cortes, Pedro Perez de Tagle and Jose Manuel Coretto take their oath of office in Madrid, Spain.
1813, Mar 17. Spain officially implements the Cadiz Constitution in Manila.
1813, Oct 16 to 19. The Battle of the Nations near Leipzig, Germany; it ends with Napoleon and the French defeated.
1813, Oct. Following the French defeat at Leipzig, the British General Duke of Wellington drives the Napoleonic forces out of Spain.
1814. Ferdinand VII, son of Charles IV, is recognized as King of Spain.
1815, Jun 18. Napoleon Bonaparte is defeated in a battle with another multi-national army under Wellington at Waterloo, Belgium.
1815, Oct 15. Bonaparte is exiled to St. Helena's Island in the Atlantic Ocean, off the coast of West Africa.
1816, May 24. After the defeat of Napoleon in Europe and his brother's loss of the Spanish throne, conservative forces again dominate Spanish politics. The Spanish Cortes rejects the Cadiz Constitution which means, among other things, that Philippine representation in the Cortes is abolished.
1820. Changes in Philippine economic life, partially introduced by the British, lead to some internal prosperity. In agriculture, crops are relegated by region so that tobacco becomes the chief crop of the north, sugar the main crop of the Visayas, and abaca the mainstay of the Bicol region. The same year, foreigners are massacred in Binondo. They were under suspicion of poisoning Pasig river and thus being responsible for a severe epidemic of cholera.
1828. An earthquake lasting between 2 to 3 minutes damage a number of buildings and churches in Manila.
1830. The Port of Manila is opened to the world market.
1835. The Chamber of Commerce is installed. Francisco Rodriguez establishes the first Filipino bank.
1848. Glowing avalanche from Mt Hibok-Hibok on Camiguin island
1852, Dec 4 to 6. Glowing avalanche from Mt Hibok-Hibok.
1863. The educational system in the archipelago is reformed, allowing the natives higher levels of training. Wealthier native families start sending their children to study in Spain.
1863, Jun 3. At 19:00, a terrific earthquake shakes Manila and ruins most buildings in the city, including the cathedral. Of major structures, only the San Agustin church remains standing.
1869, Nov 17. The Suez Canal is opened, establishing a regular steamship service between the Philippines and Europe. This allows not only the influx of more goods into the colony but also of new ideas.
1872, Feb 17. Three martyr priests are publicly garroted as alleged leaders of the Cavite Conspiracy, a movement for secularization and nationalism, which is distasteful to the Spanish friars. They are Jose Burgos (born Feb 9, 1837), Mariano Gomez (born Aug 2, 1799) and Jacinto Zamora (born Aug 14, 1835). The incident gives the Filipinos an impetus to unite and to develop national consciousness. It also gives birth to a reform movement among Filipinos in Spain, known as the Propaganda Movement.
1880. Manila is connected through telegraphic cable to the Western world by Eastern Telecom.
1880, Jul 18 & 20. Two shocks of an earthquake create destruction from Manila to Santa Cruz, Luguna. Tremors continue until Aug 6.
1882, Mar 3. A talented offspring of the native elite, Jose Protacio Rizal Mercado y Alonso Realonda (Jun 19, 1861 - Dec 30, 1896) leaves Manila for Barcelona to continue his studies in medicine.
1882, Jun 2. In Madrid, Rizal begins writing Noli me tangere, a political novel set in the Philippines.
1884. Exaction of tribute from all male natives is ended and the required forced labor of 40 days a year is reduced to 15 days.
1884, Jun 21. Rizal finishes his medical studies in Spain.
1887, May 29. Noli me tangere is published in Madrid and Barcelona.
1887, Oct. Rizal begins writing the novel El Filibusterismo, a continuation of Noli me tangere.
1888, Dec 13. Filipinos in Barcelona establish the organization La Solidaridad. It demands for the Philippines freedom of press, speech and assembly, equality before the law, participation in governmental affairs, social and political freedom and representation in the Spanish Cortes. The demands are published and circulated in Barcelona for the purpose of reaching the Spanish King's ear. Among the members are: Jose Rizal, Lopez Jaena (Dec 18, 1856 - Jan 20, 1897), Marcelo del Pilar (Aug 30, 1850 - Dec 3, 1920), Antonio Luna (Oct 29, 1866 - Jun 5, 1899) and Mariano Ponce (Mar 23, 1863 - May 23, 1918).
1891, Mar 28. Rizal finishes writing El Filibusterismo in Biarritz, France.
1892, Jun 26. Rizal arrives in the Philippines via Hong Kong.
1892, Jul 3. In Ilaya St, Tondo, Rizal founds La Liga Filipina to give the people a chance for direct involvement in the reform movement. Andres Bonifacio (Nov 30, 1863 - May 10, 1897) is one of Rizal's partners.
1892, Jul 7. The Spanish authorities arrest Rizal for organizing La Liga Filipina.
1892, Jul 17. Rizal is exiled to Dapitan, Mindanao.
1894, Jul 8. Andres Bonifacio forms the Katipunan. Its members come from the lower and the middle class. The organization wants to awaken nationalism and free the Filipino people from Spanish oppression and friar despotism. The organization believes that reforms can only be obtained by means of a revolution.
1896, Jul 1. Rizal receives a telegram from Governor Ramon Blanco requiring his services as a physician for the Spanish army in Cuba.
1896, Aug 6. Rizal returns to Manila.
1896, Aug 19. Spanish authorities discover the Katipunan when one of its members, Teodoro Paterno, betrays the organization to an Agustinian priest, Fr. Mariano Gil. All those implicated are ordered arrested but many Katipuneros evade arrest and flee to the hills of Balintawak.
1896, Aug 23. A revolution is proclaimed by Bonifacio. The event is marked in history as the Cry of Balintawak. In this instance, Filipinos tear up their cedulas (I.D. cards) issued by the Spanish government and thereby mark the beginning of the uprising against the Spaniards.
1896, Aug 26. Rizal goes to Cavite where he boards a ship for Barcelona. In the following night, Andres Bonifacio, Emilio Jacinto and other Katipuneros are able to surreptitiously board Rizal's ship. They offer to rescue him from the Spaniards, but Rizal refuses.
1896, Aug 30. After the spread of the Katipunan revolt throughout The Country the first real battle for Philippine independence takes place at San Juan del Monte. The Spanish Governor Ramon Blanco proclaims a state of war in the 8 provinces that took up arms. The provinces are Manila, Laguna, Cavite, Batangas, Pampanga, Bulacan, Tarlac and Nueva Ecija.
1896, Sep 2. Aboard the ship Isla de Panay, Rizal leaves Cavite for Barcelona.
1896, Oct 3. Rizal arrives in Barcelona.
1896, Oct 4. By order of Capt. Gen. Despujol, Rizal is incarcerated in Montjuich.
1896, Oct 6. On orders from Madrid, Rizal is sent back to Manila as a prisoner.
1896, Oct 31. A new group of the Katipunan is formed in Cavite; it discards the leadership of Andres Bonifacio and is headed by Emilio Aguinaldo (Mar 22, 1869 - Feb 6, 1964).
1896, Nov 13. Rizal arrives in Manila and is immediately imprisoned at Fort Santiago.
1896, Nov 20. Rizal is interrogated the first time on charges of partaking in an uprising against the Spanish government.
1896, Dec 20. Rizal is sentenced to death by a Spanish court martial, and Governor Camilo Polavieja orders his execution.
1896, Dec 30. The Spaniards execute Jose Rizal in
Bagumbayan (today's Rizal Park).
1897, Mar 22. The Katipunan holds its election. Aguinaldo is elected as president while Bonifacio is elected only as director of war. Bonifacio is insulted by the election results and refuses to recognize the new leadership.
1897, Apr 29. Katipuneros arrest Andres Bonifacio and his brothers Procopio and Ciriaco on orders of Aguinaldo, who considers the former a threat. The Bonifacios are charged with sedition and treason before a military court of the Katipunan.
1897, May 8. The Katipunan court finds the Bonifacios guilty. They are sentenced to death.
1897, May 10. Andres Bonifacio and his brothers are executed at Mt. Buntis, Maragondon, Cavite.
1897, May 31. Aguinaldo establishes a Philippine republican government in Biak-na-Bato, San Miguel, Bulacan.
1897, Aug 10. Aguinaldo begins negotiating with the Spaniards, represented by Pedro Paterno.
1897, Aug 15. An earthquake at estimated intensity of 7.9 centered on Luzon's northwest coast shakes Batanes and northern Luzon.
1897, Nov 1. The Constitution of Biak-na-Bato is signed. It was prepared and written by Isabelo Artache and Felix Ferrer. The government of the Biak-na-Bato Republic has the following officers: Emilio Aguinaldo, President; Mariano Trias, Vice President; Isabelo Artache, Secretary of Interior; Antonio Montenegro, Secretary of Foreign Affairs; Baldomero Aguinaldo, Secretary of Treasury and Emiliano Riego de Jesus, Secretary of War. The Biak-na-Bato Republic fails as its leader, Aguinaldo, resigns to the fact that the Filipinos are not yet ready to confront the Spanish forces. This belief also drives him to negotiate with the Spaniards for the Pact of Biak-na-Bato.
1897, Dec 14. The Pact of Biak-na-Bato between the Spanish and Aguinaldo is signed. In this pact, Aguinaldo agrees to surrender all arms and to go with his companions into exile in Hong Kong upon payment of 800,000 pesos and an additional 900,000 pesos for the non-combatants who suffered losses because of the war.
1897, Dec 27. Aguinaldo and his companions leave for Hong Kong where they live on the interest from their money.