Dr. Joseph Montano documented his experiences around the Philippines while traveling there for a scientific mission sponsored by the Department of Public Instruction of France from 1879 to 1881. These experiences are contained in his book Voyage aux Philippines et en Malaisie, released in 1886. Dr. Montano’s detailed descriptions and images of life in the Philippines and Malaysia have also been published in various magazines around Europe.
The illustration here is titled Intérieur d’une Case Bicole [Interior of a Bicolano House], 1886. Dr. Montano and two other contributors, Dosso and Hildibrand, are credited as authors of this wood engraving.
A Bicolano family is captured in their home here with the men and boys wearing either colored Barong Tagalog or camisa de chino with pants, and the women wear baro’t saya. There are chickens in the home, and the family seems to be having or preparing for a meal.