Mrs. Province of Batangas Angelica Villena

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Batangas (Tagalog: Lalawigan ng Batangas), (Spanish: Provincia de Batangas), is a first class province of the Philippines located on the southwestern part of Luzon in the CALABARZON region. Its capital is Batangas City and it is bordered by the provinces of Cavite and Laguna to the north and Quezon to the east. Across the Verde Island Passages to the south is the island of Mindoro and to the west lies the South China Sea. Poetically, Batangas is often referred to by its ancient name Kumintang.

Batangas is one of the most popular tourist destinations near Metro Manila. The province has many beaches and is famous for excellent diving spots including Anilao in Mabini, Sombrero Island in Tingloy, Ligpo Island in Bauan, these areas more popularly known as Anilao. Matabungkay in Lian, Punta Fuego in Nasugbu, Calatagan and Laiya in San Juan.

Batangas is also where Taal Volcano, one of the Decade Volcanoes is located. It is also where the Taal Heritage town lies, a small picturesque town that has ancestral houses and structures dating back to the 19th century.

Batangas has the second largest international seaport in the Philippines after Metro Manila. The identification of the city as an industrial growth center in the region and being the focal point of the CALABARZON program resulted to the increasing number of business establishments in the city’s Central Business District (CBD) as well as numerous industries operating at the province’s industrial parks.

The first recorded name of the Province was Kumintang, after the Datu who inherited the dominion from Datu Balensusa. Its centre, the present day Balayan, was the most progressive town of the Province and the traditional centre of governance. Later, as the eruption of the Taal Volcano destroyed a significant portion of the town, the provincial centre was transferred toTaal, which was then called Bonbon and the name of the province was changed after that of the town.

The term batangan means a raft, the people used so that they could fish in the nearby Taal Lake. It also meant the numerous logs found in the Calumpang River, the body of water that runs through the northeastern portion of the town and assumes the shape of a tuning fork.

The dialect of Tagalog spoken in the province closely resembles the Old Tagalog spoken before the arrival of the Spanish. Hence the Summer Institute of Linguistics called this province the Heartland of the Tagalog Language. A strong presence of the Tagalog culture is clearly visible to the present day.

Linguistically Batangueños are also known for their unique affectation of often placing the particles eh or ga (equivalent of particle ba Filipino), usually as a marker of stress on the sentence, at the end of their spoken sentences or speech; for example: “Ay, oo, eh!” (“Aye, yes, indeed!”). Some even prolong the particle ‘eh’ into ‘ala eh’, though it really has no meaning in itself.

In the recent years, waves of migration from the Visayas had brought significant number of Visayans to the province. There are also a few who can speak Spanish, since Batangas was an important centre during the colonial period.

Batangas also has one of the highest literacy rates in the country at 96.5%, wherein the males have a slightly higher literacy rate at 97.1% than females with 95.9%.Combined average of literacy is 96%.

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