detail from Labels for Hair Ribbons by Manuel Ocampo a delectable selection of oriental appetizers
Saturday, November 02, 2002


: . Unmentionable Sins, Indigenous and Imported:

From Relation of the Worship of the Tagalogs, their Gods, and their Burials and Superstitions by Fray Juan de Plasencia, 1589:
    ...among the [Tagalog] priests of the devil [is]...the bayoguin, [which] signified a "cotquean," a man whose nature inclined toward that of a woman...

From Sucesos de las Islas Filipinas by Antonio de Morga, 1609:
    All the time that the natives lived in a heathen condition there is no record of their having fallen into the unmentionable sin against nature, but men and women alike have caught something of the disease through their contact with the Spaniards who have since come to their land, and, still more, through contact with the Sangleyes who have come hither from China, and who are greatly given to this vice. In this matter it has been necessary to take action.

Obviously, Morga did not meet a single, homegrown bayoguin during his sojourn in Filipinas. Or did he? More next week.

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