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Thursday, August 4, 2011

Manunggul Jar and the Early Practice of Burial in the Philippines

One remarkable artifact found in Manunggul Cave, Lipuun Pt., Quezon, Palawan explains the primitive way of burial in Philippines. The Manunggul Jar signifies also the belief of ancient Filipinos in life after death as best described in the image on the cover of the jar. There is two human figures in a boat representing a voyage to the afterlife. The boatman is holding a steering paddle while the one on his front shows hands crossed on his chest. This position of the hands is a common practice for arranging a corpse in Philippines and in Southeast Asia. The boat design is similar to the traditional sea vessels found in Southeast Asia, also with the contemporary carvings that has similarities to Taiwan and in many areas of South East Asia .

The Manunggul Jar was discovered on March 1964 by Victor Decalan, Hans Kasten and other volunteer workers from the United States Peace Corps. It is dated to the late Neolitic Period, about 890-710 B.C. This artifact is considered as national treasure of the Philippines, adding the image in P1,000 peso bill gives Manunggul Jar a change for every Filipino to be aware of our cultural heritage.

Image source
The burial jar found in Philippines called as Manunggul Jar

Image Source
two image of man sailing for afterlife with boat of death in the cover of Manunggul Jar

P1000 peso bill showing Manunggul Jar

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