Visayas

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Visayans (Aklanon, Boholano/Bol-anon, Caluyanon, Capiznon, Cebuano, Eskaya, Hiligaynon, Karay-a, MasbateƱo, Porohanon, Romblomanon, Waray), Ati

The Visayas is one of the three principal geographical divisions of the Philippines, along with Mindanao and Luzon. It consists of several islands, primarily surrounding the Visayan Sea. Its population are referred to as the Visayans.

The major islands of the Visayas are Panay, Negros, Cebu, Bohol, Leyte, and Samar.[3] The region may also include the islands of Romblon and Masbate, whose population identify as Visayan.

Contents

History

The early people in the Visayas region were Austronesians and Negritos who migrated to the islands about 6,000 to 30,000 years ago. These early settlers were animist tribal groups. In the 12th century, settlers from the collapsing empires of Srivijaya, Majapahit and Brunei, led by the chieftain Datu Puti and his tribes, settled in the island of Panay and its surrounding islands. By the 14th century, Arab traders and their followers, venturing into the Malay Archipelago, converted some of these tribal groups into Muslims. These tribes practiced a mixture of Islam and Animism beliefs. There is also some evidence of trade among other Asian people. The Visayans were thought to have kept close diplomatic relations with Malaysia and Indonesian kingdoms since the tribal groups of Cebu were able to converse with Enrique of Malacca using the Malay language when the Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan arrived in 1521.

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