El filibusterismo El filibusterismo (lit.
Spanish for "The Filibustering"), also known by its English alternate title The Reign of Greed, is the second novel written by Philippine national hero José Rizal. It is the sequel to Noli Me Tangere and like the first book, was written in Spanish. It was first published in 1891 in Ghent, Belgium. Plot summary Thirteen years after he left the Philippines, Crisostomo Ibarra (the main character from Noli Me Tangere) returns as Simoun, a rich jeweler sporting a beard and blue-tinted glasses, and a confidant of the Governor-General of the Philippines, the Captain-General. Abandoning his idealism, he becomes a cynical saboteur, the titular filibustero, seeking revenge against the Spanish Philippines system responsible for his misfortunes by plotting a revolution. Simoun insinuates himself into Manila high society and influences every decision of the Captain-General to mismanage the country’s affairs so that a revolution will break out. He cynically sides with the upper classes, encouraging them to commit abuses against the masses so that the latter would be encouraged to revolt against the oppressive Spanish colonial regime. This time, he does not attempt to fight the authorities through legal means, but through violent revolution using the masses. Simoun has reasons for instigating a revolution. First is to rescue María Clara from the convent and second, to get rid of ills and evils of Philippine society. His true identity is discovered by a now grown-up Basilio while visiting the grave of his mother, Sisa, as Simoun was digging near the grave site for his buried treasures. Simoun spares Basilio’s life and asks him to join in his planned revolution against the government, egging him on by bringing up the tragic misfortunes of the latter's family. Basilio declines the offer as he still hopes that the country’s condition will improve. Basilio, at this point, is a graduating student of medicine at the Ateneo Municipal de Manila. After the death of his mother, Sisa, and the disappearance of his younger brother, Crispín, Basilio needed the advice of the dying boatman, Elías, and traveled to Manila to study. Basilio was adopted by Captain Tiago after María Clara entered the convent. With Captain Tiago’s help, Basilio was able to go to Colegio de San Juan de Letrán where, at first, he is frowned upon by his peers and teachers not only because of the color of his skin but also because of his shabby appearance which he also experiences at Ateneo. Captain Tiago’s confessor, Father Irene is making Captain Tiago’s health worse by giving him opium even as Basilio tries hard to prevent Captain Tiago from smoking it. He and other students want to establish a Spanish language academy so that they can learn to speak and write Spanish language in the Philippines Spanish despite the opposition from the Dominican friars of the Universidad de Santo Tomás. With the help of a reluctant Father Irene as their mediator and Don Custodio’s decision, the academy is established; however they will only serve as caretakers of the school not as the teachers. Dejected and defeated, they hold a mock celebration at a pancitería while a spy for the friars witnesses the proceedings. Simoun, for his part, keeps in close contact with the bandit group of Kabesang Tales, a former cabeza de barangay who suffered misfortunes at the hands of the friars. Once a farmer owning a prosperous sugarcane plantation and a cabeza de barangay (barangay head), he was forced to give everything to the greedy and unscrupulous Spanish friars. His son, Tano, who became a civil guard was captured by bandits; his daughter Hulî had to work as a maid to get enough ransom money for his freedom; and his father, Tandang Selo, suffered a stroke and became mute. Before joining the bandits, Tales took Simoun’s revolver while Simoun was staying at his house for the night. As payment, Tales leaves a locket that once belonged to María Clara. To further strengthen the revolution, Simoun has Quiroga, a Chinese man hoping to be appointed consul to the Philippines, smuggle weapons into the country using Quiroga’s bazaar as a front. Simoun wishes to attack during a stage play with all of his enemies in attendance. He, however, abruptly aborts the attack when he learns from Basilio that María Clara had died earlier that day in the convent. A few days after the mock celebration by the students, the people are agitated when disturbing posters are found displayed around the city. The authorities accuse the students present at the pancitería of agitation and disturbing peace and has them arrested. Basilio, although not present at the mock celebration, is also arrested. Captain Tiago dies after learning of the incident and as stated in his will—forged by Father Irene, all his possessions are given to the Church, leaving nothing for Basilio. Basilio is left in prison as the other students are released. A high official tries to intervene for the release of Basilio but the Captain-General, bearing grudges against the high official, coerces him to tender his resignation. Julî, Basilio’s girlfriend and the daughter of Kabesang Tales, tries to ask Father Camorra’s help upon the advice of an elder woman. Instead of helping Julî, however, Father Camorra tries to rape her as he has long-hidden desires for Julî. Julî, rather than submit to the will of the friar, jumps over the balcony to her death. Basilio is soon released with the help of Simoun. Basilio, now a changed man, and after hearing about Julî's suicide, finally joins Simoun’s revolution. Simoun then tells Basilio his plan at the wedding of Paulita Gómez and Juanito, Basilio’s hunch-backed classmate. His plan was to conceal an explosive inside a pomegranate-styled Kerosene lamp that Simoun will give to the newlyweds as a gift during the wedding reception. The reception will take place at the former home of the late Captain Tiago, which was now filled with explosives planted by Simoun. According to Simoun, the lamp will stay lighted for only 20 minutes before it flickers; if someone attempts to turn the wick, it will explode and kill everyone—important members of civil society and the Church hierarchy—inside the house. Basilio has a change of heart and attempts to warn Isagani, his friend and the former boyfriend of Paulita. Simoun leaves the reception early as planned and leaves a note behind; "Mene Thecel Phares." - "The writing on the wall" (or sometimes "handwriting on the wall") Juan Crisostomo Ibarra. Initially thinking that it was simply a bad joke by those left behind, Father Salví recognizes the handwriting and confirms that it was indeed Ibarra’s. As people begin to panic, the lamp flickers. Father Irene tries to turn the wick up when Isagani, due to his undying love for Paulita, bursts in the room and throws the lamp into the river, sabotaging Simoun's plans. He escapes by diving into the river as guards chase after him. He later regrets his impulsive action because he had contradicted his
Known to be dependable. finally accepting Florentino’s explanation. Kabesang Tales . He prefers to live alone on his family's remote seaside property than to maintain the position of curate. Don Custodio . even contemplating marrying him if her runaway husband were found to be dead. Doña Victorina's husband. she at first shows preference for Isagani. Characters Below are some of the major characters in the novel. He has little fear of authority and speaks openly of his patriotic ideals. he went to Manila after burying his mother. have motivated him to take his revenge. Simoun. now unmasked as the perpetrator of the attempted arson and failed revolution.Aspiring to start his own farm. he takes Simoun's revolver and goes to join the tulisanes. Pressured by his mother. made his fortune abroad and returns to the Philippines as the wealthy jeweller. Later Juliana is killed in an encounter with a friar and his father. Basilio . but later the were defeated in the movement. Before he dies. shot by his own grandson. he was elected the kabesa or head of the barangay. he seeks shelter at the home of Father Florentino. With his idealism. believed to be dead at the end of Noli Me Tangere. Juliana.The best friend of Basilio. Hence he becomes a rebel.Taking to heart the advice of the dying boatman Elias to study at the end of Noli Me Tangere. became a servant to help pay off their debts. and that when the time came that it would be used for the greater good. At the time of Simoun's arrival. his motivation is actually to encourage them to abuse the masses who would then be driven to revolt by increasing abuses. when Simoun comes to pass the night at his house. he reaffirms Rizal's stance that liberation must be achieved not through bloody revolution but through peaceful reforms. Simoun takes poison in order for him not to be captured alive. There. he has held many posts.Crisostomo Ibarra. when the nation would be finally deserving liberty for themselves. He has a mistress. many of which he had no qualifications for. a dancer named Pepay. But she is thrown into the company of Juanito Pelaez because her aunt. Isagani . headed by Isagani. the titular "filibustero". the sea would reveal the treasures. Macaraig .A high official in the government. His son was conscripted by the Civil Guard and his daughter. he is looking forward to graduating as valedictorian then marrying his childhood sweetheart. who was also hiding at the house. becomes a fugitive. Kabesang Tales's daughter and Basilio's sweetheart is known by the nickname Juli.own belief that he loved his nation more than Paulita and that the explosion and revolution could have fulfilled his ideals for Filipino society. Padre Florentino . While there he pursued a medical degree and became involved in a movement of some students. Her romantic dilemma is similar to that faced by Rizal's real-life sweetheart Leonor Rivera. Finally. he was encouraged by Capitan Tiago to move to Ateneo. Devoted to Basilio. has taken an interest in the young heir. Though a diligent student. when her family falls into debt she decides to become a servant rather than sell the
. Through his words to the dying Simoun. Paulita Gomez . on whom people rely for assistance in swaying Don Custodio when they need a favor from him. he suffered great losses. dies in an encounter with the Guardia Civil. Juli . which meant often having to appease the higher officials by shouldering the expenses of those who were unable to pay their taxes. he became a priest even though he was in love. flirtatious Paulita Gomez. While he appears to side with the wealthy and influential in society. Isagani’s uncle. Simoun. He used his rich wife's money to secure such positions. he devoted himself to his priestly duties and the study of natural sciences. Eventually the self-centered Paulita chooses to marry the amusing Juanito rather than the serious Isagani. which suggests his strong character in avoiding the temptations of a prestigious position and high income. related in the first novel. Simoun.Juliana. His sufferings. squeezes his hand and dies. Wounded and exhausted after he was shot by the pursuing Guardia Civil. Florentino opines that God did not forsake him and that his plans were not for the greater good but for personal gain. against the advice of his uncle and guardian Padre Florentino. After his former sweetheart married a worthless man. struck dumb. Juliana. disguised with a beard and tinted glasses. who were affronted by the efforts of a poor native to improve his status in life. and comes under the care of doctor Tiburcio de Espadaña. he is a poor law student and poet. the ridiculous Doña Victorina from Noli Me Tangere. Whereas he once sought reform and education. he was taken in by Capitan Tiago and was able to go to San Juan de Letran. He murders the friaradminstrator and the new tenants of his land. to set up a school for the teaching of Spanish to natives. First. his wife and eldest daughter died while clearing their land. Simoun . he failed to please his teachers. He leads the students with Isagani to set up a spanish school. he reveals his real identity to Florentino while they exchange thoughts about the failure of his revolution and why God forsook him. He is in love with the spoiled. Then most of his land was seized and he was charged an exorbitant tax on the little left to him. becoming the leader of a group of students who plan to set up a school for the teaching of Spanish to natives. he clashes with the cynical Simoun. he now resorts to subterfuge and violence. Having high grades.A secular Filipino priest. His situation in the school improved when his skill in a fencing match impressed one of his teachers.A beautiful girl who is admired by all the students.The rich student who offered his own house as the dormitory of the students studying in Ateneo Municipal de Manila. Florentino then takes Simoun’s remaining jewels and throws them into the Pacific Ocean with the corals hoping that they would not be used by the greedy. where the teachers were more enlightened and encouraging.
busybody neighbor woman that she has no other recourse but to ask his help in freeing Basilio. He raised the sick and young Basilio after his mother Sisa had died. After much hesitation she approaches the friar. Similar issues are raised: the need for reform in education. He finally completed the book on March 29. Attorney Pasta .Abraham Ibañez is his real name. 1891 in Biarritz. His biographer Retana agrees that as a political novel. only to end up getting fatally injured running from him. He later moved to Brussels where the cost of living was cheaper and he would be less likely to be distracted by social events so he could focus on finsihing the book. who did not understand his use of the word in Noli Me Tangere. Rizal uses satire and caricature. Rizal seeks to expose the current situation in the Philippines in El Filibusterismo. He hid Simoun's weapons inside his house. pitting Rizal's fading hopes for reform against his long-held aversion to revolution.a Chinese businessman who dreamed of being a consul for his country in the Philippines. it is superior. After distributing copies of the first edition to his friends in Europe. In any case. Tandang Selo . his physics teacher. superstition masquerading as religion." Rizal's comment that a noble. He promised to Isagani that he and the other priests will give in to the students' demands. to be smuggled to the Philippines by friends.a student of the University of Santo Tomas who was very intelligent and wise but did not want. despite his preference for achieving reforms bloodlessly. The books were first sent to his residence in Hong Kong.the priest-friend of Isagani. The content of the novel and its dedication were used as proof of Rizal's subversion when he was tried.Hernando de la Sibyla.father of Kabesang Tales. The few copies that were circulated were greatly in demand among the Filipinos. but there is less humor.. that Rizal's aversion was mainly towards a disorganized revolution of an uneducated people. He is a journalist who believes he is the "only" one thinking in the Philippines. Rizal tried to avoid allowing the second one to fall into the hands of the Spaniards. making El Filibusterismo a rare book overnight.the highest-ranking official in the Philippines during the Spanish era Father Sibyla. the lengthy discussions of the possible means of achieving social reform indicate that Rizal had given the different possibilities much serious consideration. The latter still seems to win out. Upon shipment to the Philippines the copies were immediately seized by the authorities. the corruption of officials. Upon completing El Filibusterismo Rizal wrote to Blumentritt: "I have not written in it any idea of vengeance against my enemies.. the abuses of the friars. Pure and innocent. more bitterness in his treatment of situations. As in Noli. In London (1888). Rizal continued to work on his manuscript in Paris. A number of chapters have long dialouges that seem like debates. In it Rizal reveals a more mature and less hopeful outlook regarding the political and social situation in the Philippines. The writing of the novel Rizal began writing El Filibusterismo in October 1887 while he was in Calamba. Historical context El Filibusterismo was written about four years after Noli. Quiroga . Rizal designated most of the remainder to be sent to the Philippines. since it could have little chance of success and only lead to "useless spilling of blood. Against Rizal's intentions. along with Noli Me Tangere the book inspired Andres Bonifacio and other revolutionaries in their cause. Placido Penitente . The title Rizal had to define the word filibustero to his German friend Ferdinand Blumentritt. He also controls his temper against Padre Millon. It was published in September of that year in Ghent.one of the great lawyers of mid-Hispanic Manila Captain-General (no specific name) . for the rights of Tagalogs. however. to pursue his studies. partially funded by Rizal's friend Valentin Ventura. He had after all written El Filibusterismo not for the Spaniards but for the Filipino people to read.locket he had given her. Rizal explained: "The word filibustero is
. she is nevertheless aware of the curate's reputation as a womanizer. The frustrations he had experienced in his efforts toward social reform in those years account for the book's graver tone Rizal himself considered Fili to be a better. as the novel ends with Simoun's failure at revolution and Padre Florentino's conviction that freedom should be won without bloodshed. and the pretensions of social-climbing natives and Spaniards. he revised the plot and some chapters." Given the reaction to his first book. but only for the good of those who suffer. if not only by his mother's plea. patriotic and self-sacrificing man such as Elias in Noli would be a good revolutionary leader would seem to support the idea that Rizal supported the idea of armed revolution in certain conditions. But she is made to feel by a devout. once a possession of Maria Clara's that had fallen into his hands. more profound novel than Noli. In a letter. Some scholars argue..
• • • • • • • •
Ben Zayb . a Dominican friar and vice-rector of the University of Santo Tomas
Themes As with Noli Me Tangere. Father Fernández . The main theme focused on by El Filibusterismo is the ideal means of achieving social reform.
He enrolled in Medicine and Philosophy and Letters at the University of Santo Tomas and then traveled alone to Madrid. Rizal attended the Ateneo Municipal de Manila. correspondent. It does not have the meaning of freebooters. Burgos (one of the executed priests). to speak German with my student friends. completed in 1887 his eye specialization under the renowned professor. He left Heidelberg a poem. Without his parents' knowledge and consent. He graduated as one of the nine students in his class declared sobresaliente or outstanding. patriot and the most prominent advocate for reforms in the Philippines during the Spanish colonial era. 1861 – December 30. or beerhall. he decided to study medicine specializing in ophthalmology at the University of Santo Tomas Faculty of Medicine and Surgery but did not complete the program claiming discrimination made by the Spanish Dominican friars against the native students. it rather means a dangerous patriot who will soon be hanged or well. where he continued his studies at the Universidad Central de Madrid. attributed his martyred death as the catalyst that precipitated the Philippine Revolution. earning a Bachelor of Arts. essayist. he delivered an address in German in April 1887 before the anthropological society on the orthography and structure of the Tagalog language. as well as the words Cavite. Bagumbayan). the word filibustero had acquired the meaning "subversive" in the Philippines. etc. and the anniversary of Rizal's death is commemorated as a Philippine holiday called Rizal Day. Our father forbade us to utter it. There he used the newly invented ophthalmoscope (invented by Hermann von Helmholtz) to later operate on his own mother's eye. In Berlin he was inducted as a member of the Berlin Ethnological Society and the Berlin Anthropological Society under the patronage of the famous pathologist Rudolf Virchow. 1896. and novelist whose most famous works were his two novels. Jose Rizal was the founder of La Liga Filipina. a presumptuous man. "A las flores del Heidelberg. Education Rizal first studied under the tutelage of Justiniano Aquino Cruz in Biñan. Rizal's 1896 military trial and execution made him a martyr of the Philippine Revolution. The general consensus among Rizal scholars. He was a proponent of institutional reforms by peaceful means rather than by violent revolution. was a Filipino polymath. Upon learning that his mother was going blind.
Dr.little known in the Philippines. Otto Becker. Noli me Tangere and El filibusterismo. in the diseases of the eye." By the end of the nineteenth century. Rizal audaciously expresses his conviction that their treatment at the hands of the Spanish authorities was unjust. the 25-year-old Rizal. Laguna. The dedication The book is dedicated to the memory of the Gomburza. These are social commentaries on the Philippines that formed the nucleus of literature that inspired dissent among peaceful reformists and spurred the militancy of armed revolutionaries against the Spanish colonial authorities. He is considered a national hero of the Philippines. I heard it for the first time in 1872 when the tragic executions (of the Gomburza) took place. three priests who were accused of being seditious and executed. At Heidelberg. He was a prolific poet. a civic organization that subsequently gave birth to the Katipunan led by Andrés Bonifacio and Emilio Aguinaldo. In his dedication. He attended the University of Paris and earned a second doctorate at the University of Heidelberg. He continued his education at the Ateneo Municipal de Manila to obtain a land surveyor and assessor's degree. hence the book is about subversion.” He lived in a
. He was sent to Manila and enrolled at the Ateneo Municipal de Manila. The masses do not know it yet. The seventh of eleven children born to a wealthy family in the town of Calamba. His education continued at the University of Paris and the University of Heidelberg where he earned a second doctorate. As a political figure. Licentiate in Medicine." which was both an evocation and a prayer for the welfare of his native land and the unification of common values between East and West. but secretly supported by his brother Paciano. The Manila newspapers and the Spaniards apply this word to one whom they want to make a revolutionary suspect. I still remember the panic that this word created. José Protasio Rizal Mercado y Alonso Realonda (June 19. Twice a week. diarist. Spain. he traveled alone to Europe: Madrid in May 1882 and studied medicine at the Universidad Central de Madrid where he earned the degree. and at the same time at the University of Santo Tomas Faculty of Arts and Letters where he studied Philosophy and Letters. however. From Heidelberg. The Filipinos belonging to the educated class fear the reach of the word. Laguna. Following custom. earning the degree of Licentiate in Medicine. I go to the bierbrauerie. Rizal was a polyglot conversant in at least ten languages. Rizal wrote his parents: “I spend half of the day in the study of German and the other half.
while in Wilhemsfeld. stands. considered a prescient if unusual option then.One. a hospital and a water supply system. backed by an insurance force of Spanish troops. that when we know how to sacrifice ourselves for our duties and convictions. Exile in Dapitan Rizal was implicated in the activities of the nascent rebellion and in July 1892. Execution Moments before his execution by a firing squad of native infantry of the Spanish Army. was a memorial. His sister Narcisa toured all possible gravesites and found freshly turned earth at the cemetery with guards posted at the gate. now stands near the place where he fell. there never having any ground burials. A sandstone fountain in Pastor Ullmer’s house garden where Rizal lived in Wilhelmsfeld. the Spanish surgeon general requested to take his pulse. He was secretly buried in Pacò Cemetery in Manila with no identification on his grave. José Aseniero. Assuming this could be the most likely spot. he met Reverend Karl Ullmer and stayed with them in Wilhelmsfeld. who was with Rizal throughout the life of the school. and taught and engaged in farming and horticulture. she made a gift to the caretaker to mark the site "RPJ". Rizal's initials in reverse. death does not matter if one dies for those one loves – for his country and for others dear to him. and another. the Spanish sergeant in charge of the backup force hushed his men to silence when they began raising '¡vivas!' with the partisan crowd. a Muslim.Karlstraße boarding house then moved to Ludwigsplatz. where he wrote the last few chapters of "Noli Me Tangere". They would later enjoy successful lives as farmers and honest government officials. became a datu.The statue carries the inscription "I want to show to those who deprive people the right to love of country. was deported to Dapitan in the province of Zamboanga. There. became Governor of Zamboanga. A plaque marks the Heidelberg building where he trained with Professor Becker. then the vital raw material for cordage and which Rizal and his students planted in the thousands. a smaller version of the Rizal Park with his bronze statue stands and the street where he lived was also renamed after him. A national monumentMain article: Rizal ParkA monument. it was normal.The boys' school. His last words were those of Jesus Christ: "consummatum est". Aware of this. in which they learned English. There he built a school.--it is finished. a peninsula of Mindanao. was conceived by Rizal and antedated Gordonstoun with its aims of inculcating resourcefulness and self sufficiency in young men. with his remains. Abaca. designed by the Swiss Richard Kissling of the famed William Tell sculpture."