Main article: Spanish language in the Philippines
Spanish was introduced in the islands after 1565, when the Spanish Conquistador Miguel López de Legazpi set sail from Mexico and founded the first Spanish settlement on Cebú. In 1593, the first printing press in the Philippines was founded and it released the first (albeit polyglot) book, the Doctrina Christiana that same year. In the 17th century, Spanish religious orders founded the first universities in the Philippines, some of which are considered the oldest in Asia. During colonial rule through Mexico City, Spanish was the language of education, trade, politics and religion, and by the 19th century, became the country's lingua franca although it was mainly used by the educated Filipinos. In 1863, a Spanish decree introduced a system of public education, creating free public schooling in Spanish. In the 1890s, the Philippines had a prominent group of Spanish-speaking scholars called the Ilustrados, such as José Rizal. Some of these scholars participated in the Philippine Revolution and later in the struggle against American occupation. In 1899, the short-lived First Philippine Republic established Spanish as the country's official language; both the Malolos Constitution and the Lupang Hinirang (national anthem) were written in Spanish. The use of Spanish began to decline after Spain ceded the islands to the United States as a result of the Spanish–American War of 1898. Under U.S. rule, the English language began to be promoted instead of Spanish. In 1940, there were six million people with Spanish speaking skills in the Philippines. The 1950 Census stated that Filipinos who spoke Spanish as a first or second language made up only 6% of the population. In 1990, the census reported that the number had dwindled to just 2500. Spanish ceased to be an official language in 1973 and in 1987, it was dropped as a college requirement during Corazón Aquino's administration. Former president Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, a third-language Spanish speaker, introduced legislation to re-establish the instruction of Spanish in 2009. Today, the language is still spoken today by Filipino-Spanish mestizos and Spanish families who are mainly concentrated in Metro Manila, Iloílo and Cebú. It remains a required subject in some academic institutions, such as the University of Santo Tomás in Manila and the University of San Carlos in Cebú. Many historical documents, land titles, and literature were written in the Spanish language, and many of these documents were often left untranslated, although some of them as land titles still have legal value. Spanish, through colonization and subjugation of other influences, has contributed the most number of loanwords and expressions in Tagalog, Cebuano, and other Philippine languages. Spanish creoles
There are several Spanish-based creole languages in the Philippines, collectively called Chavacano. These may be split into two major geographical groups: * In Luzón:
* Caviteño (Chabacano de Cavite/nisos), spoken in Cavite City, Cavite. * Ternateño (Chabacano de Barra), spoken in Ternate, Cavite. * Ermiteño (Chabacano de Ermita), formerly spoken in Ermita, Manila but is now extinct. The last reported speakers were a woman and her grandson during the 1980s and 1990s. * In Mindanao:
* Zamboangueño Chavacano (Chavacano de Zamboanga / Zamboangueño Chavacano), spoken in Zamboanga City, Zamboanga Sibugay, Zamboanga del Sur, Zamboanga del Norte, Basilan Province, Sulu Province, Tawi-Tawi Province and Semporna, Sabah, Malaysia (360,000 native speakers-Zamboanga City alone as per 2000 census, making it the most spoken form and known form of Chavacano) * Cotabateño (Chabacano de Cotabato), spoken in Cotabato * Davaoeño Abakay (Davaoweño Zamboanguenyo), spoken in Davao City The natives dwelt on houses made of bamboo and palm leaves, and were properly attired at all times. They cultivated rice,...