NOLI ME TANGERERE BY JOSE RIZAL http://www.webmanila.com/nolimetangere.

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Synopsis of Noli Me Tangere
Crisostomo Ibarra is the heir of a wealthy clan. He returns to the Philippines after studying for seven years abroad. He hears news/gossip about the death of his father, Don Rafael Ibarra. Don Rafael was sent to prison in connection with the death of a tax collector. Since Don Rafael stopped receiving holy communion for a long time, he was refused a Catholic/Christian burial by Padre Damaso, the parish priest of their town. Crisostomo (let's just call him Ibarra from hereon) sees the lack of progress in his town and decides to build a school to teach and prepare his townspeople. Tandang Tacio (the old philosopher) notes that there have been many attempts to build a school in the past, but all these had failed. Padre Salvi opposes the plan because he is secretly worried that the school project will threaten the power he wields over their town. Ibarra almost gets killed while he is laying the cornerstone of the school, but Elias saved him. Elias is the mysterious fellow who also saved Ibarra previously. With so many powerful enemies, Ibarra eventually gets implicated in a staged revolution, and is hunted down by the guardia civil. Maria Clara, Ibarra's sweetheart, unwittingly adds to Ibarra's woes when she switches Ibarra's letter with another letter that reveals her true nature. The guardia civil catch up with Ibarra, and drizzle him and Elias with bullets near the lake. Ibarra survives and buries Elias in the forest owned by the clan of Ibarra. The guardia civil think Ibarra drowned and died in the lake and promptly leave the scene.

Maria Clara thinks Ibarra really died, gets depressed, and enters the nunnery. She does not follow the advice of Padre Damaso to marry Linares.

Chapter 1: A Gathering In late October, Don Santiago de los Santos (otherwise known as Capitan Tiago), hosted a dinner at his house on Anloague Street. The descriptions of the house could be likened to the status of Philippine society under Spanish rule. Among the characters we meet are a Teniente Guevara, Padre Sibyla (Dominican) and Padre Damaso (Franciscan). Padre Damaso spent 20 years as parish priest in San Diego. The angry conversation between Padre Damaso and the soldier reveals that a good man, whose son was in Europe, died. His body was exhumed by the San Diego parish priest and ordered buried elsewhere. Some notes • • It is not yet clear why Capitan Tiago is hosting a dinner. It will be learned only in later chapters that the dinner is in honor of Juan Crisostomo Ibarra, the novel's lead character, who is returning to the Philippines from Europe. It is almost All Souls' Day.

Introduced in this chapter is Doña Victorina, a memorable and insufferable character of the Noli.

Questions and Answers

1. What undesirable traits of Filipinos were mentioned in this chapter? 2.

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Attending parties even if not invited, extravagant parties (because no one knew how many people were coming), the host does not get to eat dinner. How did Rizal liken the Philippines to Capitan Tiago's house? The country, like the house, is open to all (Philippine hospitality). But Filipinos are not interested in business or entrepreneurship, and have a hard time embracing new ideas (because of conservatism). Any new endeavor is met with doubts from many sectors, but once success is achieved, everyone wants to share in the glory. What is the significance of the argument between Padre Damaso and Teniente Guevara? This exemplifies the difficulty of uniting Church and State. Take note of the assassination of Capitan Heneral Bustamante. History also tells of the bloody struggle for the Spanish throne between the liberal supporters of Queen Cristina and the friar-supported Carlist movement. What was the effect of this on Philippine government? Frequent changes in the Spanish monarchy translated to a high turnover of Capitan Henerales in the Philippines. Given their short stint, these men in government took either advantage of their position by engaging in corruption, or did not bother to govern well. What was Padre Damaso mad about? He was upset about his being sent away from San Diego, where he served as parish priest for 20 years. He got angry at someone and branded him a heretic. When the "heretic" died, he was buried in the church (because Padre Damaso was not around). When Padre Damaso returned, he ordered the body exhumed and buried in the Chinese cemetery. This unjust act was reported to the Capitan Heneral by Teniente Guevara, and Padre Damaso was transferred out of San Diego.

Padre Damaso started to say something about letters being lost during his transfer, but he did not finish his sentence. Actually, these are letters written to Padre Damaso by some...woman. Chapter 2: Crisostomo Ibarra We meet Juan Crisostomo Ibarra y Magsalin, the son of the late Don Rafael Ibarra (the man whose body was exhumed). Crisostomo gets confused when Padre Damaso, the friar whom Crisostomo thought was a close friend of his deceased father, said that Don Rafael was never a close friend of his. Fortunately, the soldier had kinder words to say about Don Rafael. Another good friend of Don Rafael, Capitan Tinong of Tondo, invited Crisostomo for tomorrow's lunch. Crisostomo declined, saying he was leaving for San Diego the following day. An attendant announced that dinner was served. Some Notes • • • Padre Sibyla, Padre Damaso, and Teniente Guevara were surprised to see Crisostomo Ibarra accompanied by Capitan Tiago. This means they did not know the purpose of the dinner. Ibarra spent seven years in Europe. Ibarra's name shows that his mother is a Filipina (Magsalin).

Questions and Answers

1. Why did Ibarra think that his father was a close friend of

Padre Damaso? When Ibarra was a child until he left for Europe, Padre Damaso would often join the Ibarras for lunch and dinner. Ibarra often heard his father, Don Rafael, conversing amiably with Padre Damaso.

Why did Padre Damaso deny that Don Rafael was his friend? It turns out that the heretic who died in jail, and whose body was ordered exhumed by Padre Damaso is Don Rafael. What happened to the relationship between Padre Damaso and Don Rafael during the seven years that Crisostomo Ibarra was away will be revealed in later chapters.

Chapter 03: The Dinner Capitan Tiago ordered tinola served. It was a dish which Ibarra had not eaten in a long time because of his extended stay in Europe. Tinola contains chicken, white squash and broth. Table conversation covered where Ibarra went (Northern Europe, Germany and Russian Poland), as well as newsworthy items learned by Ibarra: "...the prosperity or the misery of a people is in direct proportion to its liberties or concerns, and consequently to the sacrifices or selfishness of its ancestors." Padre Damaso belittled Ibarra's trips abroad saying that these were useless because what Ibarra learned could be also known without having to travel extensively. Instead of arguing with the friar, Ibarra left after graciously excusing himself from the crowd. Capitan Tiago tried to stop him, saying that Maria Clara was coming soon, but Ibarra still left. Teniente Guevara followed him. One of the guests (a red-haired writer named Laruja) present will later write an article about how tinola can ruin a feast and why indios should not be allowed to read or travel outside the Philippines. Some Notes • • Padre Damaso is no longer the parish priest of San Diego (town of Capitan Tiago in their province). However, he was still invited to the dinner because he was the confessor of the late wife of Capitan Tiago. Maria Clara is the sweetheart of Crisostomo Ibarra.

Questions and Answers

1. Why did Ibarra say that his country has forgotten him? 2.
For one year, he did not receive any news from the Philippines while he was in Europe. None of his acquaintances let him know that his father had died. How did Rizal show appreciation for the heritage of every country that he visited? Like Ibarra, Rizal made it a point to study the history of a country before visiting it. What was Rizal's point in introducing the red-haired writer in this chapter? He wanted to point out that at that time, our history was being written by foreigners who had spent so little time in the country. An example of this would

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be the historical account stating that Magellan discovered the Philippines in 1521. How could he have discovered it when there were already Filipinos on the islands when Magellan arrived? Why were there many Filipinos who were not educated by their parents during the Spanish occupation? The "indiyo" mothers were convinced by the friars that education was bad for the children. What were the different types of people in society? Peninsular - born in Spain; living in the Philippines Filipino - Spaniards born in the Philippines Indiyo - "Natives" born in the Philippines

Chapter 4: Heretic and Subversive Ibarra walks the streets of Manila and notes how nothing has changed in the past seven years. He is approached by Teniente Guevarra and learns for the first time about what happened to his father, Don Rafael. An illiterate Spanish tax collector hurt a young boy who was making fun of him. Before he could inflict additional pain on the boy, Don Rafael intervened. In the process, the tax collector was pushed and he died after his head hit a rock. Don Rafael was jailed, people who used to openly respect him came out and denounced him, while Padre Damaso branded him a heretic for not going to confession. Teniente Guevarra tried to get Don Rafael out of jail, was chastised by others, but eventually succeeded in securing Don Rafael's release from prison. However, Don Rafael died in jail. Some Notes • Teniente Guevarra does not know why Padre Damaso was angry at Don Rafael because long before the incident with the tax collector, Don Rafael was no longer going to confession. Padre Damaso would often dine at the Ibarra residence. The rift appeared only after the young Ibarra left for Europe. Don Pedro Eibarramendia was a spaniard who married a Filipina or Mestisa. They were the parents of Don Saturnino Ibarra who married a woman from Manila. Don Saturnino is the father of Don Rafael Ibarra who married a Filipina surnamed Magsalin. Their child is Crisostomo Ibarra (who can be said to be more Filipino than Spanish).

Questions and Answers

1. Why was Ibarra surprised to find out that his father died in
jail? Before Ibarra left for Europe, his father, Don Rafael, was respected by many people in their province (even by the friars and some important government officials). He could not accept how his father, a good and just man, could end up in jail. What did Teniente Guevarra mean by "one cannot be honest in the Philippines and not go to jail?" Due to corruption and injustices committed by the government and the friars, any person of integrity would dare speak out. This was considered an act of treason so these people were jailed for speaking against the government.

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3. Accdg to Teniente Guevarra, although Don Rafael was
admired and respected by many people, he still had enemies. Who were they? They were a few evil spaniards and friars who were envious of Don Rafael's wealth. He was well-loved by the natives because of the kindness he showed them. This, however, served to make the indios more aware of the evils of the other spaniards. Some people were also mad at Don Rafael because of the wrongdoings of his grandfather. What was held against Don Rafael? o The murder of the spanish tax collector o Heresy...no belief in God; no confession. o Subversion...(1) speaking out against the friars and against govt, (2) reading El Correo de Ultramar, a radical newspaper, (3) sending Ibarra to Swiss Germany, centers of free thought and protestantism, (4) picture of a Filipino priest (possible Father Burgos), and (5) wearing a barong tagalog (attire of the indios because only spaniards were allowed to wear their shirts tucked in).

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He was found in the possession of a picture of a priest and How did Rizal show appreciation for the heritage of every country that he visited? Like Ibarra, Rizal made it a point to study the history of a country before visiting it.
Chapter 5: A Star in the Dark Night Ibarra asks to be brought to the Fonde de Lala hotel, where he fails to notice the noise and music coming from the house of Capitan Tiago (which can be seen from Ibarra's hotel). He is bothered by thoughts or visions of his father, Don Rafael, suffering in jail and eventually dying there. In the house of Capitan Tiago, people admire the beautiful Maria Clara. However, instead of Capitan Tiago beaming with pride, it is Padre Damaso who is seen smiling like someone most fortunate. In this chapter, Rizal introduces a young Franciscan friar, Padre Salvi, parish priest of the town of San Diego. Some Notes • It is possible that Padre Salvi arrived late, which explains why he was not able to participate in the grabbing of seats of honor at the dinner table. It would help the reader to pay close attention to the way Rizal describes this friar.

Chapter 6: Capitan Tiago Capitan Tiago and Dona Pia have long been without child. Padre Damaso advised them to hear mass at Ubando (or Obando, Bulacan). Soon after, Dona Pia conceived, but ever since became depressed. She died after giving birth to a baby girl, Maria Clara, who was raised by her aunt, Tia Isabel. Padre Damaso became the godfather of the child, while Crisostomo Ibarra became a childhood friend of Maria Clara. Some Notes

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Rizal describes the many superstitious beliefs of the religious folk, as well as the corruption in the government which is made widespread by people like Capitan Tiago. The full name of Capitan Tiago is Santiago de los Santos ("all of the saints") which is Rizal's way of hinting that he will use this character when tackling issues of faith or religion. Rizal deliberately made unclear the circumstances surrounding Dona Pia's death, in order to heighten the reader's anticipation. The truth is, Dona Pia died because she was extremely upset with giving birth to an illegitimate child; the child of Padre Damaso. Note the superstitions related to "paglilihi" (the cravings of a pregnant woman which affect the physical appearance of her child): o Dona Pia kept looking at icons of saints and of the Blessed Virgin Mary o Godchildren look like their godfather or godmother Here are the characteristics of Capitan Tiago: o Gets along with those in power o Intelligent o Obedient o Skilled in business Capitan Tiago and Don Rafael agreed that their children (Maria Clara and Crisostomo Ibarra) will one day marry each other, and that both fathers will join businesses for the benefit of their two children.

Questions and Answers

1. Why is Capitan Tiago considered to be in good terms with God? This
derogatory statement refers to the fact that God does not borrow money from Capitan Tiago. In addition, his wealth is used to give back to God in the form of masses, novenas, prayers, indulgencias, expensive clothes for the wooden saints, and such. His actions served to enrich the friars. Why does Rizal say that Capitan Tiago realizes that in the calendar, there are a lot of saints who are probably doing nothing in heaven? There are far too many saints listed in the calendar (at least one saint per day). This belief stems from the perception that saints are extremely jealous of other saints. What is the meaning of the statement that Capitan Tiago realizes that in order to become a saint, one either cuts or is cut? Saint Peter the Martyr was a saint who was hacked in the head by a pagan. Simon Peter (disciple of Jesus Christ) who was entrusted with the key to heaven, also became a saint even if he cut the ear of Malko in the Garden of Gethsemane. Why is Capitan Tiago on good terms with the government? From the highest official down to the lowest government servant is treated the same way by Capitan Tiago. Capitan Tiago always bows, obeys, agrees, never argues, gives money, and does not read publications from Europe (lest such writings free his mind and allow him to question the way things are in his country). Why did Dona Pia talk about the fisherman (in Macbeth) who, after finding a great treasure, refuses to sing? A poor fisherman who is happy spends his time singing joyous songs. Just like others, though, he dreams of becoming rich one day. When he is able to find a treasure, he then discovers fear and soon loses his ability or desire to sing once again. This is similar to Dona Pia's situation where her prime desire is to have a child. However, when she finally conceives, a depression envelops her all the way to her grave. From here we can see that Rizal is familiar with Shakespeare. Did Capitan Tiago and Don Rafael consult with Maria Clara and Crisostomo Ibarra regarding the arranged wedding plans as agreed by the two fathers? No. This was the practice at that time. It just so happened that

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the two children were in love with one another so they didn't mind the prearrangement. Chapter 7: Idyll in an Azotea Ibarra and Maria Clara get to speak privately in the azotea of Capitan Tiago's house. This is their first meeting after seven years. They exchanged proof that each remembered the other one after all this time. When Maria Clara read the only letter Ibarra wrote to her, he suddenly remembered his dead father. It was nearing All Souls Day so Ibarra excused himself and told Maria Clara that he will go to San Diego to take care of his father's grave. Some Notes • • • A major portion of this chapter concerns the old letter of Ibarra to Maria Clara. The reader will note a different (if almost playful) side of Maria Clara, which belies the common perception that she is refined, prim and proper. Capitan Tiago cannot really be considered as someone from San Diego because Maria Clara visits that town only during vacations.

Questions and Answers

1. How did Ibarra prove that he never, not even for an instant, ever forgot
about Maria Clara? He said that the vow he made before his mother's corpse that he will love Maria Clara and make her happy no matter what happens to him served as a shield or amulet which helped him even while he was far away, in a land of numerous beautiful women. And what did Maria Clara do to prove her own love for Ibarra? She recounted their childhood experiences (fights or otherwise). She also said that even if she was punished severely after confessing in the confessional her love for the young man, she refused to ever forget him. (This summary does not do justice to the actual text. Please read the book, ok?) What other proofs did Ibarra display? He showed the old leaves which Maria Clara placed in his hat after they swam in the river (they were with Ibarra's mother at that time) more than seven years ago. And what did Maria Clara show in return? She got Ibarra's old letter (kept near her chest). What did Ibarra place in his letter to Maria Clara? He clarified why his father (Don Rafael) urged him to study in Europe even though Ibarra badly wanted to just stay in the Philippines with his father and his beloved. And what reasons did Ibarra give for leaving the Philippines? Ibarra's father admonished him that, as a man, he had to think of the future, his moral debt to his country, and to learn things that he cannot possibly learn while in the Philippines (Don Rafael had little faith in the Philippine educational system). Why is Capitan Tiago considered to be in good terms with God? This derogatory statement refers to the fact that God does not borrow money from Capitan Tiago. In addition, his wealth is used to give back to God in the form of masses, novenas, prayers, indulgencias, expensive clothes for the wooden saints, and such. His actions served to enrich the friars. Why does Rizal say that Capitan Tiago realizes that in the calendar, there are a lot of saints who are probably doing nothing in heaven? There are far too many saints listed in the calendar (at least one saint per day). This belief stems from the perception that saints are extremely jealous of other saints.

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9. What is the meaning of the statement that Capitan Tiago realizes that in
order to become a saint, one either cuts or is cut? Saint Peter the Martyr was a saint who was hacked in the head by a pagan. Simon Peter (disciple of Jesus Christ) who was entrusted with the key to heaven, also became a saint even if he cut the ear of Malko in the Garden of Gethsemane. Why is Capitan Tiago on good terms with the government? From the highest official down to the lowest government servant is treated the same way by Capitan Tiago. Capitan Tiago always bows, obeys, agrees, never argues, gives money, and does not read publications from Europe (lest such writings free his mind and allow him to question the way things are in his country). Why did Dona Pia talk about the fisherman (in Macbeth) who, after finding a great treasure, refuses to sing? A poor fisherman who is happy spends his time singing joyous songs. Just like others, though, he dreams of becoming rich one day. When he is able to find a treasure, he then discovers fear and soon loses his ability or desire to sing once again. This is similar to Dona Pia's situation where her prime desire is to have a child. However, when she finally conceives, a depression envelops her all the way to her grave. From here we can see that Rizal is familiar with Shakespeare. Did Capitan Tiago and Don Rafael consult with Maria Clara and Crisostomo Ibarra regarding the arranged wedding plans as agreed by the two fathers? No. This was the practice at that time. It just so happened that the two children were in love with one another so they didn't mind the prearrangement.

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Chapter 08: Memories After visiting Maria Clara, Ibarra proceeds to San Diego. Along the way, one thing is quite evident: After being away for seven years, Ibarra saw no changes whatsoever. Some Notes This chapter shows a country's lack of progress during those times. Rizal likens the "good Filipino" to the Barkas Bridge -- it is dilapidated but continues to serve others, rises and falls at the whim of the Pasig river's tide, and sometimes gets destroyed by the river. At that time, Filipinos continued to serve the oppressive government. Questions and Answers

1. What did the old priest mean when he advised Ibarra: "Do not forget that
if knowledge is the patrimony of humanity, it is inheried only by those who have the heart"? Everyone has the opportunity to learn or be educated. However, studying is not easy -- you need perseverance, self-denial and much sacrifice. You need money for tuition and books, and you have to avoid giving into the temptation of an easy life (parties, booze, gambling...you know, FUN stuff). As a result, only those who have the will and a keen desire to learn will be able to finish their studies and achieve knowledge. What lesson is Rizal trying to impart with the priest's: "I have tried to transmit to you what I have received from my teachers; the riches I have endeavored to augment as much as I could, and I am passing it on to the following generation. You will do the same with those who come after you, and you can triple it, for you are going to very rich countries"? In other words, this is the responsibility of an effective and meaningful citizenry. A citizen should strive to become learned or to educate herself so that she can contribute to the betterment or welfare of generations who will follow her.

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3. Explain: "They come in search of gold; go to their country to look for that
other gold which we lack. Remember, however, that all that glitters is not gold." While the Spaniards are mining the gold in the Philippines, the Filipinos should go to Spain or to Europe and study there in order to get the gold otherwise known as Knowledge. Note that the last saying admonishes Ibarra to discern which learnings in Europe are valuable and which are worthless. Who is this old priest? From his statement ...you can triple it, for you are going to very rich countries... look for that other gold which we lack... we can guess that the priest is a Filipino who got educated in the Philippines. One can speculate that this priest refers to someone like Padre Burgos who was executed in Bagumbayan (Take note of the line: That man had died in Bagumbayan [in reference to the old priest]). Explain: "No, despite everything, the country first; first the Philippines, Spain's daughter; first the Spanish nation! No, that which is fated does not tarnish the Motherland. No!" Ibarra believes that the execution of the old priest was a tragedy and an insult to good sense. His great love for mother country Spain, however, prevented the senseless death of the priest from detracting from the dignity of Spain. While Ibarra loved the priest, and even if he owed the priest a lot because of the many lessons in life that he received, he never allowed revolutionary feelings to surface because his love for Spain and the Philippines was greater.

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Chapter 09: Some Country Matters Ibarra sees Padre Damaso riding in his victoria, a low, light, four-wheeled carriage (with a foldable calash top, seating for two passengers and a perched seat in front for the driver. See photo). Padre Damaso, on the other hand, sees Tia Isabel and Maria Clara (they were going to the convent to get Maria Clara's things). This chapter focuses on three major conversations between or among: • • • Padre Damaso and Capitan Tiago (in Tiago's house/office) Padre Hernando Sibyla and an old, extremely sick Dominican (in Intramuros) Capitan Heneral and his men

Padre Damaso and Capitan Tiago Padre Damaso does not want Maria Clara to marry Ibarra and is displeased with Capitan Tiago for not informing him of a marriage agreement made with Don Rafael (Ibarra's father). It is unclear why Capitan Tiago chose not to consult with Padre Damaso about such an agreement in the past. But, true to his form, Capitan Tiago obeys the priest and extinguishes the candle he previously ordered lit for Ibarra's safe journey to San Diego (Ibarra's hometown).
(For those unfamiliar with this practice, a candle is usually lit and placed on an altar, sometimes in front of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Some prayers are said for someone's safe journey, since there were bandits about and who knows what other dangers lurk at each bend. As long as the candle remained lit, it was believed that the traveler was protected.)

The chapter ends with Tiago blowing out the candle and muttering that there is still time and the journey is long. (What a future father-in-law, eh?) Padre Sibyla and the Very Sick, Old Dominican

We don't know what the old priest is sick of, but that's not the point of this chapter. Here we see the Ibarra is completely unaware that the priests are plotting against him. Those Dominicans are deathly afraid of Ibarra because they know he--with his education--is not ignorant of his situation. Also, Ibarra might later rise as a leader for the indios. The Dominicans, knowing about the misfortune of Don Rafael and knowing character of Ibarra, already foresaw the brewing conflict between the young man and Padre Damaso. Nevertheless, the Dominicans were confident about controlling Ibarra, through Maria Clara and Capian Tiago. Or so thought the old priest. Padre Sibyla sees Ibarra as someone with finesse (good breeding). Afterall, Ibarra was quite subtle in his verbal fight with Padre Damaso earlier. Sibyla also considers Ibarra as an "obedient child" who will not fight outright with the friars. The old Dominican mentioned that he prefers an open fight rather than the useless praise of his friends, which tends to make the priests soft and unaware that they are starting to lose their hold on the people. (So watch out when things seem to go too well for you. You'll never know... After all, whom the gods wish to destroy, they first make mad.) Also, since the Spanish government is concerned with maintaining power over the Philippines, they will help the priests if ever the indios rise in revolt. If there is no conflict, however, the government might not see the need for the Spanish priests, and will just rely on the Filipino priests to keep the rest of the population timid. Padre Sibyla worries, however, that the government might side with the indios. Remember that the Church and State are not really the best of friends: • • The friars murdered Capitan Heneral Bustamante in Malacanan before. Capitan Heneral Ma. de la Torre was well-loved by the indios because he was just (and didn't always support the friars).

Realize that the Filipinos lacked two important things in their bid for political justice and economic freedom: • • Lack of country-wide unity. The people were geographically scattered by the Spaniards. No identified Leader.

Anyway, note Rizal's dig at the frailocracy when the priest uttered that God should have mercy on them (the priests). Capitan Heneral and his men The Capitan Heneral was aware of the insulting remarks made by Padre Damaso against him, because Laruja (the writer) told the Capitan Heneral's adjutant about it. The story did not come from Teniente Guevara because it was beneath him to "snitch" on Padre Damaso. (In the vernacular, he did not want to make "sipsip" to the Capitan Heneral.)

The Capitan Heneral revealed to his men that he was unhappy with the situation in the Philippines and that the country should be thrown into chaos so that the priests can be kicked out, just as was done by the Europeans to the priests there. However, reasoned the Capitan Heneral, since this was the fate of the Philippines, he decided to just close his eyes to the matter, just as his predecessors did. Chapter 10: The Town This chapter describes the town of San Diego and the lineage of Crisostomo Ibarra (surprisingly, each generation bore only one child). We learn that at that time, there was no such town called San Diego in the Philippines. We can assume, however, that the town is located near the shore of Laguna Lake, because this is where the guardia civiles chased Ibarra and Elias when the former escaped from prison. Note also that each town is initially taken care of by a Pilipino priest. Once the town prospers, the Spanish friars take over. Rizal likens Philippine culture to a swaying, wooden bridge. Pinoys enjoy scenes of tragedy or misfortune. We tend to laugh at disabled people (this was during Rizal's time and perhaps even up to today) -- the kids swimming in the lake laughed at an old woman who was having a hard time crossing the bridge; they should've helped her instead. Rizal pointed it out in hopes that people would correct this kind of behavior. Did he succeed? Ibarra's ancestor, who first came to San Diego, had lived long in the Philippines. He was very fluent with the Tagalog language. How the Ibarras acquired the forest in San Diego. The first Ibarra in San Diego gave cash, jewelry and clothes to those who claimed to own the forest. People, however, feared the forest. You know how forests are: cold, dark, eerie, strange sounds... and don't forget those malaria-bearing mosquitoes. A description of Don Saturnino. Spanish mestizo, probably the Fernando Jose type (hello there, Rosalinda fans!) He was very strict, but was also hardworking. He helped contribute to San Diego's progress. Don Saturnina's wife. We can't tell for sure if she was a Filipina from Manila, a Spanish mestiza, or a Spaniard born and raised in Manila. It's also possible she was a native. Geez, do people really care about Ibarra's lineage? Apparently so. Ibarra's ancestors had a mean streak, but their blood soon mixed with native understanding, compassion and self-control.

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