|the main and largest island of the Philippines, in the N part of the archipelago, separated from the other islands by the Sibuyan Sea: important agriculturally, producing most of the country's rice, with large forests and rich mineral resources; industrial centres at Manila and Batangas. Capital: Quezon City. Pop: 39 500 000 (2000). Area: 108 378 sq km (41 845 sq miles)|
|1.||the chief port of the Philippines, on S Luzon on Manila Bay: capital of the republic until 1948 and from 1976; seat of the Far Eastern University and the University of Santo Tomas (1611). Pop: 10 677 000 (2005 est)|
|2.||a type of cigar made in this city|
|3.||(often not capital) Manila hemp short for Manila paper|
|Philippines (ˈfɪlɪˌpiːnz, ˌfɪlɪˈpiːnz)|
|(functioning as singular) Republic of the Philippines a republic in SE Asia, occupying an archipelago of about 7100 islands (including Luzon, Mindanao, Samar, and Negros): became a Spanish colony in 1571 but ceded to the US in 1898 after the Spanish-American War; gained independence in 1946. The islands are generally mountainous and volcanic. Official languages: Filipino, based on Tagalog, and English. Religion: Roman Catholic majority. Currency: peso. Capital: Manila. Pop: 81 408 000 (2004 est). Area: 300 076 sq km (115 860 sq miles)Related: Filipino|
Note: The Spanish held control of the islands until 1898, when they were transferred to the United States after the Spanish-American War.
Note: Named for Philip II, king of Spain during the sixteenth century.
Note: Occupied by the Japanese during World War II, the islands were liberated by Allied troops under General Douglas MacArthur.
Note: Although Philippine independence had long been an important political issue, the country did not gain full independence until 1946.
Note: The country was under the virtual dictatorship of Ferdinand Marcos from 1965 until 1986, when he was forced into exile in the United States.
Note: It continues to be plagued by allegations of corruption in high places and by a Muslim insurgency.