1559 - King Philip II of Spain decides to send one more expedition to the archipelago they will later name the Philippines, with the prospect of colonizing the Southeast Asian land, convinced as he was that the islands (populated by an Austronesian race) lie within the Spanish zone marked out by the 1493 demarcation lines of the Treaty of Tordesillas dividing the newly discovered lands outside Europe between Spain and Portugal along a meridian 370 leagues west of the Cape Verde islands (off Africa's western west coast) as decreed by the bull of Spanish-born Pope Alexander VI; in his order, Philip II instructs Luis de Velasco, New Spain's vicerroy and president of the royal Audiencia, not to enter Portugal-owned islands and, instead, "to other nearby islands, such as the Phelipinas and others, which lie outside the above agreement and within our demarcation, and are said likewise to contain spice."
Taal volcano in the Philippines erupts, with "a great number of detonations" being heard at aruond 6 pm during the Spanish colonization of the Southeast Asian archipelago; according to the account of Catholic priest Fr. Saderra Maso, the fury of the volcanic emissions of "great masses of smoke, water, and ashes [rushing] out of the lake, high up into the air" was such that a strip of around 16.7 meters fronting the Taal convent and other areas of the beach were engulfed by water; one of the Philippine's most active volcanoes comprising the Pacific "ring of fire," the Taal Volcano complex situated between the towns to be later known as Talisay and San Nicolas in Batangas, is made up of an island in Lake Taal which, in turn, is situated within a caldera formed by an earlier, very powerful eruption.
1972 - The National Historical Institute is (NHI) created by Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos by virtue of Presidential Decree No. 1 as a national agency tasked with promoting the Southeast Asian country's history and cultural heritage; the creation of the NHI comes following the abolition of a number of memorial and commemoration committees, including its forerunner Philippine Historical Committee (which took over the Philippine Historical Research and Markers Committee) in the effort to streamline their differing functions.
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