21.9.04

Pigafetta at Mattan

Those people go naked, wearing only a piece of cloth made of palm around their shameful parts. They have as many wives as they wish, but there is always a chief one. The males, both large and small, have the head of their member pierced from one side to the other, with a pin of gold or of tin as thick as a goose feather; and at each end of this pin some have a star-shaped decoration like a button, and others, one like the head of a cart nail. Often I wished to see that of some young men and old men, because I could not believe it. In the middle of this pin or tube is a hole through which they urinate, and the pin and the stars always remain firm, holding the member stiff. They told us that this was the wish of their women, and that if they did otherwise they would not have intercourse with them. And when they wish to cohabit with their wives, the latter themselves take the member without its being prepared or rigid, and so they put it little by little into their nature, beginning with the stars. And then when it is inside it stiffens, and remains there until it becomes soft, for otherwise they would not be able to withdraw it. And those people do this because they are of a weak nature and consitution.

from Magellan's Voyage, a Narrative Account of the First Navigation, Antonio Pigafetta, trans. & ed. R.A. Skelton, Yale, 1969

3 comments:

Okir said...

Didn't this in fact take place in what would later be called the Philippines? Somewhere in Mindanao? I've read this somewhere before, perhaps in the Blair & Robertson account of various expeditions to the Philippines.

Martin Edmond said...

Certainly the Phillipines - on Cebu, according to Oscar Spates' The Spanish Lake.

BISHAMON said...

I think it really did not happen in Mactan and Cebu. I suspect that the real Mattan was referring to either Mattan, Borneo or Mataram, Java. And Cilapulapu was referring to a place of the Lepu Tepu tribe in either Java or Borneo ruled by the Muslim prince Simaun and Zula was referring to Sela, a Hindu ruler of Java. While Zebu, Zubu, Cubu was really referring to either Sabah in Borneo or Sumatra as Zabah, Djaba, Toupu. And Mazawa/Massana/Mazava was really referring to Mul-Zawa/Mul-Djawa/Mul-Jana which was either Sumatra, Java, Borneo, Cambodia, or Mindanao. But one thing for sure Raia Humabon here is more likely pronounced in Malayu as Riyah Umabong a title given to the ruler of Southeast Asian empire at that time denoting that he had the power of controlling the winds or storms and certainly he was Sultan Bulkeiah / Nakoda Ragam of Brunei, the Sharif Muhammad Kabungsuwan of Mindanao, and the the Prahbu Wijaya of Java and Sumatra, a Muslim. And his youngest wife, who was later found out as his own sister, was Leila Manchinai christened as Juana, a Buddhist-Muslim raised in Sulu as a child but had stayed in China for years. I think there is a need to correct history of Southeast Asia in the 14th to the 16th century.

Certainly, Legaspi had miscalculated the leagues and distances in retracing Magellan's route and mistook Cebu for Zubu. I think Magellan's monument was erected in Magelang in Java for I have a strong belief based on research that the battle between Magellan and a senapati really took place either in East Java or in West Borneo.