Rajah Sulayman

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For other people named Suleiman, see Suleiman (disambiguation).
Rajah Sulayman
Rajah of Maynila
Malate Monument.jpg
Reign 1571–1575
Predecessor Rajah Matanda (Namayan)
Successor Magat Salamat
House Kingdom of Namayan, Tondo and Sabag
Religion Sunni Islam

Rajah Sulayman (also Sulayman III, 1558–1575,[1]) was the Rajah or ruler of the Kingdom of Maynila, a pre-Hispanic state at the mouth of the Pasig River where it empties into Manila Bay in what is now the Philippines after Rajah Lontok. He was also the ruler of Kingdom of Tondo inheriting from a long line of rulers: Timamanukum, Alon, Gambang, Suko and Lontok–Kalangitan. Sulayman I was also the ruler of Namayan succeeding from Kalangitan and Ache. In effect, Sulayman I is the ruler of the united kingdoms of Manila.He was the kingdom's second to the last indigenous ruler (Lakan Banao Dula is the last), as the state was absorbed into the Spanish Empire during the latter's conquest of Luzon and the archipelago. His eldest son, Lakan Banao Dula was crowned Lakan (paramount ruler) or King when Sulayman I was too sick to function as monarch. Sulayman I is the grandson of Abdul Bolkiah and the son of Sulayman Bolkiah. Sulayman l did not use the surname Bolkiah but instead used the official title of Rajah Soliman Dula l, to mark the new lineage of the united Manila aristocracy[2][3][4]

Sulayman III resisted Spanish forces, and thus, along with Rajah Matanda and Lakan Dula, was one of three Rajahs who played significant roles in the Spanish conquest of the kingdoms of the Pasig River delta in the early 1570s.[5]

"Raja Mura"[edit]

Spanish documents say his people called him "Raja Mura" or "Raja Muda" (from the Sanskrit raja). The Spanish gloss of "Raja Mura" is "Young Raja", a reference to the fact that he was Raja Matanda's nephew and heir apparent. The Spaniards also called him "Raja Solimano el Mow".[1]

The Spanish Conquest of Manila (1570–1571)[edit]

Spanish explorer Miguel López de Legazpi, searching for a suitable place to establish his capital after being compelled to move from Cebu to Panay by Portuguese pirates and hearing of the existence of a prosperous kingdom in Luzon, sent an expedition under Martín de Goiti and Juan de Salcedo to explore its location and potentials.[6]

Goiti anchored at Cavite and established his authority by sending a "message of friendship" to the states surrounding the Pasig River. Rajah Sulayman, who had been ceded authority over their settlements by his aging uncle Rajah Matanda, was willing to accept the "friendship" that the Spaniards were offering, but did not want to submit his sovereignty unto them, and waged war against them due to disputes and hostility. As a result, Goiti and his army attacked the Islamic kingdoms in June 1570 and occupied their settlements before returning to Panay.[6]

The "Sulayman Revolt"[edit]

When López de Legazpi died in 1572, his successor, Governor-General Guido de Lavezaris, did not honor the agreements with Sulayman III and Lakan Dula. He sequestered the properties of the two kings and tolerated Spanish atrocities.[5]

In response, Sulayman III and Lakan Dula led a revolt in the villages of Navotas in 1574, taking advantage of the confusion brought about by the attacks of Chinese pirate Limahong. This is often referred to as the "Manila revolt of 1574" but is sometimes referred to as the "Sulayman Revolt" and the "Lakan Dula revolt." Since it involved naval forces, the Sulayman Revolt is also known as the "First Battle of Manila Bay".[5]

Friar Geronimo Marín and Juan de Salcedo were tasked with pursuing conciliatory talks with various nations. Lakan Dula and Sulayman III agreed to Salcedo's peace treaty and an alliance were formed between the two groups.[5]

Tarik Sulayman and the Battle of Bangkusay[edit]

Some controversy exists about the identity of the leader of the Macabebe people that initiated the Battle of Bangkusay in 1571. That chieftain is referred to by Philippine historians as Tarik Sulayman.[7] In some versions of the Battle of Bangkusay, Tarik Sulayman of Macabebe and Sulayman III of Manila are the same person,[8][9] while other contend that they are two separate individuals.[10]

Spanish documents do not identify the leader of the Macabebe revolt by name, but record that he died during the 1571 Battle of Bangkusay, resulting in a Macabebe retreat and Spanish victory.[10][11] Sulayman III, on the other hand, is clearly recorded as participating in the Revolt of 1574, and thus cannot be the unnamed figure who died in 1571 at Bangkusay.[citation needed]


According to Meranau history

  • Rajah Sulayman
  • Rajah Indarafatra
  • Rajah Umaka'an

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Rodil, Awang Romeo Duana (April 18, 2008). "The Muslim Rulers of Manila". melayuonline.com. Retrieved October 4, 2008. 
  2. ^ Joaquin, Nick (1990). Manila, My Manila: A History for the Young. City of Manila: Anvil Publishing, Inc. ISBN 978-971-569-313-4. 
  3. ^ Scott, William Henry (1994). Barangay: Sixteenth Century Philippine Culture and Society. Quezon City: Ateneo de Manila University Press. ISBN 971-550-135-4. 
  4. ^ Dery, Luis Camara (2001). A History of the Inarticulate. Quezon City: New Day Publishers. ISBN 971-10-1069-0. 
  5. ^ a b c d 222. "Rajah Soliman". National Heroes. Globalpinoy.com. Retrieved February 5, 2008. 
  6. ^ a b Filipiniana: Act of Taking Possession of Luzon by Martin de Goiti; accessed September 6, 2008.
  7. ^ Tantingco, Robby (October 24, 2006). "First Filipino martyr for freedom". Sun Star Pampanga. 
  8. ^ History of Manila; accessed September 8, 2008.
  9. ^ Rajah Sulayman - Manila, Philippines, waymarking.com; accessed August 10, 2015.
  10. ^ a b Piedad-Pugay, Chris Antonette (June 6, 2008). "The Battle of Bangkusay: A Paradigm of Defiance against Colonial Conquest". National Historical Institute Website. National Historical Institute. 
  11. ^ San Agustin, Gaspar de. Conquistas de las Islas Filipinas 1565–1615 (in Spanish/English). Translated by Luis Antonio Mañeru (1st bilingual ed.). Intramuros, Manila, 1998: Pedro Galende, OSA. 
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Rajah Sulaiman II
Rajah of Namayan
Succeeded by
Magat Salamat
as King without a title in the Cabeza de Barangay (leader of the Province).
Preceded by
Lakan Dula
Rajah of Tondo and Sabag