In 1543, Spanish explorer Ruy López de Villalobos named the archipelago The Philippines became part of the Spanish Empire for more than 300 years.
During this time, Manila became the western hub of the trans-Pacific trade connecting Asia with Acapulco in the Americas using Manila galleons.
Aside from the period of Japanese occupation, the United States retained sovereignty over the islands until after World War II, when the Philippines was recognized as an independent nation.
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It also hosts the headquarters of the Asian Development Bank. From the period of the Spanish–American War (1898) and the Philippine–American War (1899–1902) until the Commonwealth period (1935–46), American colonial authorities referred to the country as the Philippine Islands, a translation of the Spanish name.
From the 1898 Treaty of Paris, the name Philippines began to appear and it has since become the country's common name.
Since the end of World War II, the official name of the country has been the Republic of the Philippines.
postulates that the peopling of the archipelago transpired via trade networks originating in the Sundaland area around 48,000 to 5000 BC rather than by wide-scale migration.
Multiple ethnicities and cultures are found throughout the islands.
In prehistoric times, Negritos were some of the archipelago's earliest inhabitants.
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