Opinions on Lakan

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For places in Iran, see Lakan, Iran.

Lakan originally referred to a rank in the pre-Hispanic Filipino nobility in the island of Luzon, which means "paramount ruler." It has been suggested that this rank is equivalent to that of Rajah, and that different ethnic groups either used one term or the other, or used the two words interchangeably. In Visayas and Mindanao, the most common term used to refer to this rank is "Datu". "Sultan" was also used in the most developed and complex Islamized principalities of Mindanao.

Today, the term is still occasionally used to mean "nobleman", but has mostly been adapted to other uses. In Filipino Martial Arts, Lakan denotes an equivalent to the black belt rank. Also, beauty contests in the Philippines have taken to referring to the winner as "Lakambini", the female equivalent of Lakan. In such cases, the contestant's assigned escort can be referred to as a Lakan. More often, a male pageant winner is named a Lakan.


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Thanks to this graph, we can see the interest Lakan has and the evolution of its popularity.

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