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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, 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.

Usage examples of "lakan".

Just as the ringmaster was exclaiming how great a warrior All-seeing Rao would be when he grew up, a savage war-cry would come from under the stands, and a man charge out: one of the acrobats who had some war training, costumed in full gear, Enchian, Lakan or Arkan, whomever was hated most where we were playing.

The raids came more often, the gifts ceased, it was the Lakan delegation for whose hidden knives I must feel.

Of course in the village near where the Shae-Tyucheral lived I saw people who had hair in waves instead of true curls, and dark skin, having Lakan blood.

Instead of readying my parry I turned and cut the other Lakan, aiming between his leather-clad shoulder and the tip of his beard.

I saw him reaching for the other, and above him another Lakan bringing a coil of rope.

Our army was scattered, the town walls stormed, and everyone within chained and marched away to Lakan slave-blocks.

Some three longbow shots away, engulfing the black ruins of a village, close enough that I could see spear-shafts, lay the Lakan camp.

A thought came to me: should I stumble into someone in the camp and hope to be mistaken for a Lakan, I should smell like one, and they wear scent.

Through branches of feathery black, the lights of the Lakan camp came into sight below.

I presumed the books would all be Lakan, but an Enchian title caught my eye, being familiar.

I did not know Lakan servants are considered no one, their comings and goings expected to go unnoticed.

I brought out the sand-timer, the gems, the sheaf of maps covered with Lakan characters.

But before I could feel much, the Lakan herald began to call, in Enchian with the odd Lakan lilt, beginning with ponderous formalities.

I shall say no more, but that the Lakan lord laid his head down without hesitation, and I did it in one stroke.

Kamis, and claimed, as is our custom, a Lakan valley large enough to feed all those lost on this front in this war.