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A History of the Philippines

David P. Barrows

Book Overview: 

This book is one of the earliest studies of Philippine history by an American scholar. In preparation for this book, the author conducted ethnological studies of indigenous island tribes after the American war in the Philippines. Since this book was intended for the Philippine reader, the author nicely places the history of the Islands into the broader context of European and American history.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .Europe came into diplomatic and commercial relations with these Mongols and through them learned something of China.

Marco Polo Visits the Great Kaan.—Several Europeans visited the court of the Great Kaan, or Mongol king, and of one of them, Marco Polo, we must speak in particular. He was a Venetian, and when a young man started in 1271 with his father and uncle on a visit to the Great Kaan. They passed from Italy to Syria, across to Bagdad, and so up to Turkestan, where they saw the wonderful cities of this strange oasis, thence across the Pamirs and the Desert of Gobi to Lake Baikal, where the Kaan had his court. Here in the service of this prince Marco Polo spent over seventeen years. So valuable indeed were his services that the Kaan would not permit him to return. Year after year he remained in the East. He traversed most of China, and was for a time “taotai,” or magistrate, of the city of Yang Chan near the Yangtze River. He saw the amazing. . . Read More

Community Reviews

David Barrows encompasses Phillipine history without being boring.

An account of history in the Pacific that was quick, informative and entertaining. I will look for more writing by David Barrows.