HomeThe Journal of Historyvol. 65 no. 1 (2019)

In Search of 16th- to 19th-Century Baybayin in the Collections of the World

Regalado Trota Jose



The paper is a preliminary attempt to locate where extant baybayin scripts from the Spanish colonial period may be found. One of the earliest known examples is a number of signatures affixed to an account on a referendum held in Mangaldan, Pangasinan, in 1597, now in the Archivo General de Indias in Seville. Other examples are found in archives in Madrid, Paris, Vienna, Bloomington (Indiana), and Chicago, apart from those kept in Manila. With about a hundred examples of baybayin texts, phrases, and signatures dating from 1602 to about 1691, it seems that the collection of baybayin in the Archivo de la Universidad de Santo Tomas is the largest in the world. The rest of this paper will present the context of baybayin material in the Philippines’ oldest university.