According to the folk history gathered by Pedro Monteclaro on Maragtas, there are Ten Bornean Datus’ who settled somewhere in San Jaquin, Iloilo in 1231. They bought the Island (Panay) from the Aeta (the natives) and cultivated the land. They renamed the island to “Madya-as”. Madya-as was divided into three communities: Hamtik (Antique), Iron-irong (Iloilo) and Akean (Aklan and Capiz). The community was bounded in the form of government called “Confederation of Madya-as”.
When the Spaniards led by Miguel Lopez de Legazpi came to Panay from Cebu in 1569, they found people with tattoos, and so they called it Isla de los Pintados. The name Capiz was believed to be derived from the Visayan word kapid, meaning “twins.” When the Spaniards arrived, twin children were born to the ruler of Aklan, Datu Bankaya. Somehow, the natives inadvertently miscommunicated this to the strangers as the name of the place, so the Spaniards adopted the name Capiz for what was then Aklan. The first settlement of Spaniards was established in the mouth of Banica River and called it Pan-ay. This was the second Spanish settlement in the Philippines, the first being at San Miguel, Cebu. The capital was later transferred to its present site (Roxas City) because of its proximity to the sea.
When captivating Capiz was made into a province under Act No. 2711 on March 10, 1917, it included what is now Aklan. Due to the persistent demand of the Akeanon, Aklan was separated from Capiz in 1956.
Capiz is the birthplace of Manuel A. Roxas, the fifth president of the republic of the Philippines, after whom the provincial capital was named.
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