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The Sulu
Sulu
Archipelago
Archipelago
(Tausug: Sūg, Malay: Kepulauan Sulu, Filipino: Kapuluan ng Sulu) is a chain of islands in the Pacific Ocean, in the southwestern Philippines. The archipelago forms the northern limit of the Celebes Sea
Celebes Sea
and southern limit of the Sulu
Sulu
Sea.[1] The Sulu Archipelago
Archipelago
islands are within the Mindanao
Mindanao
island group, consisting of the provinces of Basilan, Sulu, and Tawi-Tawi. The archipelago is not, as is often supposed, the remains of a land bridge between Borneo
Borneo
and the Philippines. Rather, it is the exposed edge of small submarine ridges produced by tectonic tilting of the sea bottom [2][3] Basilan, Jolo, and other islands in the group are extinct volcanic cones rising from the southernmost ridge. Tawi-Tawi, the southernmost island of the group, has a serpentine basement-complex core with a limestone covering.[3] This island chain is an important migration route for birds. The largest municipalities in the area are on Maimbung
Maimbung
and Jolo. The larger island of Palawan
Palawan
to its north, the coastal regions of the westward-extending Zamboanga Peninsula
Zamboanga Peninsula
of Mindanao, and the north-eastern part of the island of Borneo
Borneo
were formerly parts of the thalassocratic Sultanate of Sulu. The archipelago is the home of the indigenous Tausug people; various group of Samal (or Sama) people including the semi-nomadic Badjaw; the land-based Sama; the related Yakan
Yakan
people; and the Jama Mapun
Mapun
people. The Tausug language
Tausug language
is spoken widely in the Sulu
Sulu
Archipelago
Archipelago
as both first and second languages throughout these islands. The Yakan language is spoken mainly in Basilan
Basilan
Island. Numerous dialects of Sinama are spoken throughout the archipelago, from the Tawi-Tawi Island group, to the Mapun
Mapun
island group (Mapun), to the coast of Mindanao
Mindanao
and beyond.

Contents

1 Geography 2 History

2.1 1405–1844: Sulu
Sulu
Sultanate and Spanish East Indies 2.2 1844–1898: Spanish occupation 2.3 1898–1946: American occupation

2.3.1 World War II

2.4 1946–present: Philippine Independence

2.4.1 Autonomy

3 See also 4 References

4.1 Further reading

5 External links

Geography[edit]

Bajau
Bajau
stilt houses over the sea in Basilan.

Panguan Island,The last island of the Sulu
Sulu
Archipelago
Archipelago
before the Philippine-Malaysia Border.

The archipelago is geographically subdivided into several groups, most significantly those around the main islands Basilan, Jolo
Jolo
and Tawi-Tawi. There are, however, other groups containing mostly small islands; not all of these are inhabited:

Basilan
Basilan
group

Basilan Pilas

Bongo Bubuan Cruz Island Linawan Sumisip Tambuilan Timbungan Zambonga many other small islands

Jolo
Jolo
group

Capual Jolo
Jolo
island Pata Tongquil

Balanguingui Bangalao Bitinan Bucutua Bulan Cabucan Gujangan Hegad Mamanoc Manangut Minis Pangasinan Pantocunan Parol Patian Simisa Tatalan other small islands

Keenapusan group [verification needed]

Bubuan Bintawlan Nusa South Ubian Tabawan Tagao other small islands

Laparan group

Deatoboato Cap Island Laparan Dog Can Pearl Bank (atoll)

Pangutaran
Pangutaran
group

Kulasssein Panducan Pangutaran

Basbas Cunilan Datubato North Ubian Tubigan Usada other small islands

Sibutu
Sibutu
group

Andulinang Mardanas Omapoy Panguan Sibutu Sitangkai

Tapul
Tapul
group

Lapac Lugus (Bulipongpong) Siasi Tapul

Cabingan[verification needed] Laminusa Paquia Taluc Tara Tapaan other small islands

Tawi-Tawi
Tawi-Tawi
group

Bongao Manuk Mankaw Simunul Sanga-Sanga Tawitawi Topaan

Banaran Baturapac Bilatan Calupag Kang Tipayan Dakula Kang Tipayan Diki Languyan Latuan (Sunsang), Lubucan Mantabuan Naungan Parangan Pasegan Guimba Sikubong Simalak Sugbai Tandubas Tandubato Taruk Tingungun Tubig Dakula (Bohe Mahiya), Tumbagaan other small islands

Others/Outliers

Mapun
Mapun
(formerly Cagayan de Tawi-Tawi/Cagayan de Sulu) Turtle Islands

(Baguan Boaan Great Bakkungaan Langaan Lihiman Sibaung Taganak)

Bubuan Cacatan Dammai Datubato Lahatlahat Maniacolat Singaan Sulade Teomabal other mostly uninhabited small islands

History[edit] Main articles: Bruneian Empire, Castille War, Spanish–Moro conflict, and Piracy in the Sulu
Sulu
Sea

The pirate ships used by the Moro pirates
Moro pirates
were known as proa.

The Sulu
Sulu
Archipelago
Archipelago
was once part of Majapahit
Majapahit
Empire and mentioned in the Old Javanese eulogy of Nagarakretagama
Nagarakretagama
by the name "Solot". After that, it became part of the Bruneian Empire
Bruneian Empire
before gaining its own independence on 1578.[4] The region then became part of the independent Sultanate of Sulu, founded in 1405. The arrival of Western powers later became a conflict when the Spanish start to impose the rule of Spanish East Indies
Spanish East Indies
over the Sulu
Sulu
Archipelago. Spanish military expeditions against the sultanate were launched over the centuries of the colonial Philippines period (1565–1946). The Moro Rebellion
Moro Rebellion
(1899–1913) independence movement continued the Islamic Moro conflict, against the United States occupation in areas of the Moro people
Moro people
in the archipelago and southwestern Philippines. 1405–1844: Sulu
Sulu
Sultanate and Spanish East Indies[edit] Main articles: Brunei Civil War, Sultanate of Sulu, and Spanish–Moro conflict

Pre-1636 Sultanate of Sulu
Sulu
trade range.

The Sulu
Sulu
Archipelago
Archipelago
was part of the Islamic Sultanate of Sulu, founded in 1405 by Shari’ful Hashem Syed Abu Bak’r. The sultanate also included portions of Borneo, Mindanao, Palawan, and other islands in the region. From the first Spanish encounters with Jolo
Jolo
island, the Spanish–Moro conflict met firm and organised resistance from the Sultanate of Sulu. Miguel López de Legazpi
Miguel López de Legazpi
had established a colony in Cebu in May 1565, however the initial focus of the Spanish conquest to establish the Spanish East Indies
Spanish East Indies
was northwards. In June 1578 Francisco de Sande, Governor-General of the Spanish East Indies, dispatched captain Esteban Rodríguez de Figueroa and the Jesuit priest Juan del Campo and the coadjutor Gaspar Gómez to Jolo, resulting in a negotiated compromise where the Sulu
Sulu
sultan paid a regular tribute in pearls. The following year, Figueroa was awarded the sole right to colonise Mindanao. In 1587, during a campaign against Borneo
Borneo
launched by Sande, Figueroa attacked and burned down Jolo. The Spaniards left Jolo
Jolo
after a few days. The Joloanos resolved to resist Spanish intrusions. In response to attacks, Joloanos raided Spanish settlements and reducciones. In 1593, the first permanent Roman Catholic
Roman Catholic
mission was established on the Zamboanga Peninsula, and three years later, the Spanish Army launched another attack on Jolo, which was repelled by the army of Rajah Bongsu. In November 1593, the Spanish Empire sent Juan Ronquillo to Tampakan to thwart the slave raiders. The following year, the Spanish Army troops relocated to Caldera Bay (Recodo), Mindanao. In 1598, another expedition was launched against Jolo, but was repelled by the Joloanos. In late 1600, Captain Juan Gallinato with a group of about 200 Spanish soldiers attacked Jolo
Jolo
but were unsuccessful. By 1601, after three months of heavy fighting, the Spanish troops retreated. In 1628, a larger raiding force of about 200 Spanish army officers and 1,600 soldiers was organised to attack Jolo
Jolo
to defeat the Moslem slave raiders and traders, but the Spanish again failed to take Jolo. Again on 17 March 1630, a large Spanish force of 2,500 soldiers attacked Jolo
Jolo
but to no avail. When its commander Lorenzo de Olazo was wounded, the Spaniards retreated.

The Sultanate of Sulu
Sulu
range in 1636 with the arrival of Spain.

On 4 January 1638, de Corcuera led a naval and military expedition of about 80 ships and 2,000 troops to attack Jolo, but Sultan Wasit put up stiff resistance. However, Sultan Wasit's kuta army suffered a serious epidemic of tropical disease and he and his chieftains sought refuge in the Dungun area of Tawi-Tawi. The Spanish Army easily occupied Jolo, and a small garrison was left there to control the area. The garrison was withered away by frequent raids launched by Sultan Wasit, and by 1645, this garrison had been wasted away. This was the first time that Jolo
Jolo
had been occupied by the Spaniards for an appreciable length of time. From 1663 to 1718, an interregnum of peace occurred because the Spanish troops were ordered to abandon the Zamboanga Peninsula, and forts south of that—and regroup in Manila to prepare for the impending attack of Koxinga—which never happened. Hostilities resumed in the 18th century, triggered by the 1718 decision by governor Gen Juan Antonio dela Torre Bustamante to reconstruct the fort Real Fuerza de San José in Bagumbayan, Zamboanga. The fort was completed in 1719 was renamed Real Fuerza del Pilar de Zaragosa (Fort Pilar is its popular name today) and inaugurated on 16 April. Three years later in 1722, the Spaniards launched another expedition against Jolo
Jolo
led by Andrés García; this expedition failed. In 1731, General Ignacio Iriberri lead a force of 1000 to Jolo
Jolo
and captured it after a lengthy siege, but the Spaniards again left after a few days. In 1755, a force of 1,900 Spanish soldiers led by the captains Simeón Valdez and Pedro Gastambide was sent to Jolo
Jolo
in revenge for the raids by Sultan Muiz ud-Din, but the Spaniards were defeated. In 1775, after a Moro raid on Zamboanga, Captain Vargas led a punitive expedition against Jolo, but his force was repulsed.

The Sulu
Sulu
areas in 1764 with the arrival of France.

In the second half of the 18th century, Great Britain
Great Britain
became a new player in the archipelago After occupying Manila
Manila
from 1762–64, during the Seven Years' War
Seven Years' War
between Spain, Great Britain
Great Britain
and other European powers, the British Army
British Army
withdrew to the south and established trading alliances between the Sulu
Sulu
Sultanate and the British East India Company. Spanish attacks on Jolo
Jolo
were now directed at weakening British trading interests in the south. In 1784, Aguilar conducted a series of unsuccessful assaults against Jolo
Jolo
and in 1796, Spanish admiral José Alava was sent from Madrid
Madrid
with a powerful naval fleet to stop the slave-raiding attacks from the Sulu
Sulu
Sea. The British presence was signalled when in 1798, the British Royal Navy, which had established a base in Sulu, bombarded Fort Pilar in Zamboanga. In 1803, Lord Richard Wellesley, the Governor-General of India, ordered Robert J. Fraquhar to transfer trading and military operations to Balambangan island near Borneo. By 1895, the Great Britain
Great Britain
had withdrawn its army and navy from the Sulu
Sulu
Sea. In 1815, the galleon trade across the Pacific Ocean
Pacific Ocean
between the Philippines
Philippines
and Mexico ended, since Mexico had declared its independence in 1810, and an extended war of independence was in progress. Most of the other Spanish-ruled areas of the Americas had also rebelled against their colonial masters. In 1821, the Philippine Islands were administered directly from Madrid, rather than via the Viceroy of Mexico, since Mexico and its southern neighbours had won their independence from Spain. The Spanish Empire sought to end the "Moro threat". In 1824, the Marina Sutil, a light and manoeuvrable naval force under Capitan Alonso Morgado was sent to confront the slave raiders in the Sulu
Sulu
Sea. 1844–1898: Spanish occupation[edit] Main articles: Spanish East Indies, British North Borneo, and Madrid Protocol of 1885

The Sulu
Sulu
Archipelago
Archipelago
during the Spanish occupation.

In 1844, Governor General Narciso Claveria led yet another expedition against Jolo
Jolo
and in 1848, Claveria with powerful gunboats Magallanes, El Cano, and Reina de Castilla brought from Europe supervised the attack on the Balangingi stronghold in Tungkil. The raid resulted in the capture of many Sama Balangingi and the exile of many to the tobacco fields of Cagayan Valley. The leader of the Sama, Paglima Taupan, was not captured. With the fall of the Balangingi, a powerful ally of the Sulu
Sulu
Sultanate was decimated, beginning the decline of the sultanate’s maritime sea power. In 1850, Governor General Juan Urbiztondo continued with Claveria's campaign and annihilated the remaining Balangingi strongholds at Tungkil. A raid on Jolo
Jolo
that year was a failure. On 28 February 1851, Urbiztondo launched another campaign against Jolo, razed the whole town and confiscated 112 pieces of artillery. The Spanish troops later withdrew. Also in 1851 a peace treaty was signed between the Sulu
Sulu
Sultanate and the Spanish, though the terms were understood differently by each party. In 1876, the Spanish launched a campaign to occupy Jolo. Spurred by their need to curb slave raiding, and concerned about other European colonial efforts in the region, the Spanish made a final bid to consolidate their rule in their southern frontier. The British had established trading centres in Jolo
Jolo
by the 19th century and the French were offering to purchase Basilan
Basilan
Island from the Spanish government. On 21 February 1876, the Spaniards assembled the largest contingent against Jolo, consisting of 9,000 soldiers in 11 transports, 11 gunboats, and 11 steamboats. Headed by Admiral Jose Malcampo, they captured Jolo
Jolo
and established a Spanish settlement.

Spanish warships bombarding the Moro pirates
Moro pirates
of Balanguingui in 1848.

Captain Pascual Cervera was appointed to set up a garrison and serve as military governor; he served from March 1876 to December 1876 followed by Jose Paulin (December 1876 – April 1877), Carlos Martinez (Sept 1877 – Feb 1880), Rafael de Rivera (1880–81), Isidro G. Soto (1881–82), Eduardo Bremon, (1882), Julian Parrrado (1882–84), Francisco Castilla (1884–86), Juan Arolas (1886–93), Caesar Mattos (1893), Venancio Hernandez (1893–96), and Luis Huerta (1896–99). The Spaniards were never secured in Jolo, and by 1878 they had fortified the town with a perimeter wall and tower gates, built inner forts called Puerta Blockaus, Puerta España, and Puerta Alfonso XII, and two outer fortifications named Princesa de Asturias and Torre de la Reina when Sultanate of Sulu
Sulu
formally recognised Spanish sovereignty in middle of 19th century, but these areas remained partially ruled by the Spanish as their sovereignty was limited to military stations and garrisons and pockets of civilian settlements. Troops, including a cavalry unit with its own lieutenant commander, were garrisoned within the protective walls. In 1880 Colonel Rafael Gonzales de Rivera, who was appointed by the Governor General, dispatched the 6th Regiment to Siasi
Siasi
and Bongao
Bongao
Islands. The Spaniards' stronghold was sporadically attacked. On 22 July 1883, it was reported that three unnamed men had succeeded in penetrating Jolo's town plaza and killed three Spaniards. The word “Ajuramentado” was coined by the Spanish colonel Juan Arolas after witnessing several such raids while serving with the Jolo
Jolo
garrison. 1898–1946: American occupation[edit] Main articles: Spanish–American War
Spanish–American War
and Insular Government of the Philippine Islands

The American occupation steps over the Sulu
Sulu
Archipelago
Archipelago
in 1899.

The situation until the end of World War II.

The situation until the independence of the Philippines.

In 1898, the war between Spain and America broke out. Commodore George Dewey of the US Navy
US Navy
defeated the Spanish fleet in the Battle of Manila
Manila
Bay, following which the American army occupied Manila. The United States took possession of the Philippines
Philippines
under international law after the 1898 Treaty of Paris ended the war. The Philippine–American War
Philippine–American War
followed in 1898 for three months, during which the American military fought and defeated the Philippine forces under Emilio Aguinaldo
Emilio Aguinaldo
for control of the Philippines. After the Philippine–American War, the Moro Rebellion
Moro Rebellion
(1899–1913) independence movement continued the Spanish–Moro conflict, now against the United States occupation of the Philippines. The Sulu Archipelago
Archipelago
was considered part of Islamic Moroland by the movement. World War II[edit] See also: Military history of the Philippines
Philippines
during World War II In December 1941, Japan attacked the United States in the Philippines and at Pearl Harbor, and the United States declared war on Japan as part of World War II. Japan conquered the Philippines
Philippines
in 1942, in the Philippines
Philippines
Campaign (1941–42). In 1944 the Allies' Philippines Campaign (1944–45) against the Japanese occupation began with the Battle of Leyte Gulf. Allied forces eventually drove the Japanese from the islands. 1946–present: Philippine Independence[edit] On 4 July 1946, the Philippines
Philippines
became an independent nation. The fortifications of Jolo
Jolo
remained in good state during the American occupation when its walls, gates, and the buildings within it were photographed. Early 20th century photographs of Jolo
Jolo
show a well-ordered town, neatly laid out in a grid of streets and blocks—characteristics of Spanish urbanism applied with a military rigidity. In the postwar years the walls degraded. Jolo
Jolo
suffered major destruction due to bombardment and fire during the military operations against the Moro Islamic independence forces in Jolo
Jolo
in 1973. As of 2013[update], short stretches of degraded perimeter wall still exist, but are covered by buildings or are partially demolished to less than 1 metre (3.3 ft) in height. Autonomy[edit]

The Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao
Mindanao
(ARMM) areas in green.

The Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao
Mindanao
(ARMM) is the current political entity that the Sulu
Sulu
Archipelago
Archipelago
islands are within. Bangsamoro, officially known as the Autonomous Government of Bangsamoro (Filipino: Nagsasariling Pamahalan ng Bangsamoro), is a proposed autonomous political entity within the Philippines. The proposal is part of the Framework Agreement on the Bangsamoro, a preliminary peace agreement signed between the Moro Islamic Liberation Front and the Philippine government. See also[edit]

Basilan Tawi-Tawi Sulu Banguingui Operation Enduring Freedom - Philippines

References[edit]

^ C.Michael Hogan. 2011. Celebes Sea. Encyclopedia of Earth. Eds. P.Saundry & C.J.Cleveland. National Council for Science and the Environment. Washington DC ^ Scott, William Henry. (1984). "1. Archeology". Prehispanic Source Materials for the Study of Philippine History. Quezon City: New Day Publishers. ISBN 971-10-0227-2.  ^ a b Wernstedt, Frederick L.; Spencer, Joseph Earle (1967). The Philippine Island world: a physical, cultural, and regional geography. University of California Press. pp. 37. ISBN 978-0-520-03513-3.  ^ Ring, Trudy; Salkin, Robert M; La Boda, Sharon (January 1996). International Dictionary of Historic Places: Asia and Oceania. Taylor & Francis. pp. 160–. ISBN 978-1-884964-04-6. 

Further reading[edit]

William Larousse; Pontificia Università gregoriana. Centre "Cultures and Religions." (2001). "Chapter Two. Muslim–Christian Relatrions -- the Moro Wars : 1565–1898". A local Church living for dialogue: Muslim-Christian relations in Mindanao-Sulu, Philippines : 1965-2000. Editrice Pontificia Università Gregoriana. ISBN 978-88-7652-879-8. 

External links[edit]

Media related to Sulu
Sulu
Archipelago
Archipelago
at Wikimedia Commons Sulu
Sulu
Islands travel guide from Wikivoyage

Authority control

WorldCat Identities VIAF: 246525

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