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Pagsanjan Arch

Posted by admin on July 27, 2006


3 Responses to “Pagsanjan Arch”

  1. chris lubuguin said

    The towns people built it on the spot they believe Mary, mother of Jesus, appeared to protect the town from bandits. It also marks where the old calle real starts, the town’s main thoroughfare, now the national highway.

  2. Here is the legend behind the gate. From PAGSANJAN, In History and Legend (1975 Edition) By Dr. Gregorio F. Zaide taken from http://www.pagsanjan.org

    Our Lady of Guadalupe and the Bandits

    During the last decades of the Spanish regime the provinces around Manila — Bulacan, Batangas, Cavite, Tayabas (now Quezon Province), and Laguna — were terrorized by tulisanes (bandits). The inhabitants in these bandit-infested provinces were in constant dread of the marauding brigands. The Guardia Civil (the Constabulary during the Spanish times) was impotent to curb the rampaging brigandage. These supposed guardians of peace and order during the Spanish period proved to be more efficient in oppressing the helpless population than in protecting them from the tulisanes.
    On the chilly midnight of December 8, 1877, the people of Pagsanjan were soundly sleeping. Many of them were having beautiful dreams about the coming fiesta of their beloved Patroness (Our Lady of Guadalupe) and the Christmas season. The town was silently shrouded in darkness, for it was a moonless night.
    A band of bandits which had plundered the upland town of Majayjay the previous evening stealthily approached the western entrance of Pagsanjan. These bandits were led by the notorious Tangkad, the terror of the Tagalog provinces. He was a ferocious Chinese-Tagalog mestizo, physically strong as a wild carabao and tall as bamboo shoot. Because of his height (6 feet 2 inches), so rare for a native, he was known as Tangkad (tall man).
    As the armed bandits were about to enter the slumbering town, suddenly a beautiful lady in milky white dress and holding aloft a shining sword appeared before them. Tangkad and his men stopped, spellbound by the strange apparition.
    The beautiful lady drew a line across the road and said: “Listen to me, evil men of the night, I know who are you. This is my town, whose people are under my protection. I don’t want you to loot and plunder this town. So beware, tulisanes! If you cross this line to molest my people, you will die!”
    The bandits, who were brave men in fighting their enemies, trembled with fear. For the first time in their turbulent lives, they were paralyzed with terror. Before their very eyes, the mysterious lady vanished, leaving a rare fragrance in the air. Immediately, Tangkad and his frightened men turned about and fled into the mountain.
    This strange incident would have been unknown were it not for the insomnia of a sabungero (cockfighting addict) who was living near the scene. Because of his inability to sleep, he was fully awake that midnight. Through the window of his nipa hut, he witnessed the dramatic event.
    The next morning Mang Juan, the old sabungero, rushed to the church and excitedly told the friar cura what he had witnessed. The cura promptly summoned the town officials and the leading citizens and informed them of Mang Juan’s story. Like the Spanish cura, the town officials and citizens were skeptical, thinking that it was a figment of Mang juan’s alcoholic imagination.
    “Now, Mang Juan,” said the town gobernadorcillo, “Your story is fantastic. maybe you were drink again last night. If you don’t stop telling such foolish stories like this, I’ll be forced to put you in jail.”
    “No, no sir,” replied Mang Juan, “What I told you is a true story. By all the saints in heaven, I saw it actually! I swear, I was not drunk last night. If you don’t believe me, I’ll show you the place where our beloved Patroness stopped the bandits!”
    To find out whether or not the sabungero was telling the truth, the cura, local officials, and prominent citizens proceeded to the place. They were guided by Mang Juan. Upon reaching the place, Mang Juan told them: “Here is the exact spot where our Patroness appeared before the bandits.”
    The old Spanish friar, the town officials, and the leading citizens looked on the ground. To their great surprise, they saw the line drawn by the Patroness’ sword, the clear traces of her footprints, and the blurred imprints of the bandits’ bare feet. Thus they came to believe the amazing tale of the old sabungero.
    The Pagsanjeños, to express their gratitude to Our Lady of Guadalupe for saving their town from the bandits, erected the ornate stone gate on the very line drawn by her sword. The construction of this town gate began in 1878 and finished in 1880. It has miraculously survived the blows of nature and man in the past years, such as the earthquakes, typhoons, revolutions, and wars. It still exists in an everlasting aura to remind the visitors from all parts of the world of the glory that is Pagsanjan.

  3. mini cooper s works…

    […]Pagsanjan Arch « Heritage Conservation Society[…]…

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