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Title:

Florante at Laura

Author: Francisco Balagtas y de la Cruz , also known as Francisco Baltazar, was a


prominent Filipino poet, and is widely considered as one of the greatest Filipino literary laureate for his impact on Filipino literature. The famous epic, Florante at Laura, is regarded as his defining work. The name "Baltazar", sometimes misconstrued as a pen name, was a legal surname Balagtas adopted after the 1849 edict of Governor-General Narciso Claveria y Zaldua, which mandated that the native population adopt standard Spanish surnames instead of native ones. His works also includes Orosmn at Zafira, Don Nuo at Selinda, Auredato at Astrome, Clara Belmore, Abdol at Misereanan, Bayaceto at Dorslica Alamansor at Rosalinda, La India elegante y el negrito amante, Nudo gordeano, Rodolfo at Rosemonda, Mahomet at Constanza and Claus.

Characters:

Florante a duke of Albania and the main protagonist of the novel. Laura Daughter of King Linceo of Albania. She is the love interest of Florante and is later married to him.

Count Adolfo Rival of Florante and the antagonist of the novel. Once a good friend to Florante during their time at the academy. His jealousy and envy towards Florante sparked his rebellion against the king. He was also responsible for the imprisonment of Florante. He was killed by Flerida as he attempted to rape Laura in his escape against the forces loyal to the king. Prince Aladin Son of Sultan Ali-Adab of Persia. He saved Florante from being eaten by lions in the forest. Later, he marries his love interest Flerida. Flerida Aladin's fiance. She asked Sultan Ali-Adab to spare Prince Aladin's life on the condition that she will be Ali-Adab's wife. She later escaped and killed Count Adolfo as he attempted to rape Laura in the forest. Duke Briseo Father of Florante and a nobleman of Albania. He was killed, along with King Linceo, by Count Adolfo during his usurpation of power. He was a very good father to Florante. Princess Floresca Mother of Florante and the Princess of Crotone. She died while Florante was studying in Athens. King Linceo King of Albania and the father of Princess Laura. A great ruler of Albania, he and Duke Briseo were killed by Count Adolfo during the latter's takeover. Sultan Ali-Adab Sultan of Persia and the father of Prince Aladin. He sentenced his son to death because of cowardice in the battlefield. In exchange for Aladin's life, Flerida promised to marry the Sultan. After her escape, the Sultan committed suicide. Count Sileno Father of Count Adolfo. Menalipo Cousin of Florante. He saved Florante from vultures when they were younger. Menandro Friend and confidant of Florante. They first met while they were studying in Athens and Menandro saved Florante from a young Adolfo's attempt to murder him. He and Florante shared military expedition. He led the overthrow of Count Adolfo and restored peace in Albania. Antenor Professor of Florante, Menandro, and Adolfo in Athens. A good and wise teacher to Florante. General Osmalik A general of Persia. He was killed by Florante during a military expedition. General Miramolin A general of the Ottoman Empire. He was responsible for the invasion of Albania to bring the kingdom under the imperial officers who sacked Albania together with Aladin during the ongoing campaign of Florante and Menandro in Crotone. He nearly slew Laura for her refusal to love him but was defeated.

Summary:
The story begins with a description of a dark, dangerous, deserted forest in the kingdom of Albania, that is inhabited by serpents, basilisks, hyenas, and tigers. Deep in the heart of the depressing jungle where the tangled growth of vines and thickets intertwined, and the great canopy of heavy foliaged trees formed a roof over the dismal jungle clearing, the moans and anguished cries of a forsaken man filled the savage stillness of the air. The man is tied to a tree and is barely alive. He is Florante, the son of Duke Briseo and Princess Floresca. He has blonde hair, fair smooth skin, and a face and body that is comparable to that of Narcissus and Adonis. Florante, while tied to a tree, questions the heavens for the suffering of the people of Albania. Here he describes the treachery and suffering that are happening inside and outside of the kingdom of Albania. Gone are the days of peace and and justice. Innocent people have become victims of those who are hungry for power and money. Those who fought to save the kingdom have suffered grievously. He mentions that Count Adolfo was said to be behind the treachery with his plot to steal the crown from King Linceo and the wealth of Duke Briseo. Florante begs heaven to save the kingdom of Albania. The man tells the heavens that he can take whatever trial or challenge that may come his way as long as Laura will always remember him. Aside from all that is happening to Albania, he takes refuge in the memories of the times he shared with Laura. He mentions that he would be pleased to see Laura crying over his dead body if Laura would betray him. With this, he imagines Laura in the arms of Count Adolfo. This thought brings him to tears and devastation which made him tired and cause him to pass out. The man cries for Laura to save him, but she does not come. With this, the man thinks that Count Adolfo has finally stolen Laura from him. He mentions that he will thank Count Adolfo for all the hardship as long as he doesn't take Laura from him. With too much to bear, the man cries in despair and faintes. In another part of the forest comes Aladin, a Muslim soldier. He sits on a stump and professes his love for a woman named Flerida. He talks about his overwhelming love for Flerida and vows to kill for the sake of love. He says that no one can stand in his way nor is there anyone who can take his love from him, not even his father. He also says that love can make a person blind to the truth and make him forget about reason and honor.

After professing his love for Flerida, the Muslim soldier hears a voice in the forest. This voice talks about the brutal death of his loving father. The man talks about how his father was beheaded and had his body thrown somewhere else. No one attempted to bury his father's remains for fear of Count Adolfo's wrath. Even without seeing his father, the man knew that the old man was thinking of him until the end of his life. While tied to a tree, Florante was approached by two lingering lions. But the lions did not seem to attack, thinking that the man might already be dead. Realizing the approach of death, the man says his farewell to Albania, the land he wished to serve since he was a child, and to Laura, whom he will forever love. Upon hearing the man's cries, Aladin set off to find the man. His timing was impeccable because the lions were about to attack Florante. With a swift motion of his weapon, the Muslim soldier killed the two lions. With his courage and precision in combat, he was compared to Ares, the god of war.

Moral Lesson:
First and foremost, the story shows that love conquers all. It means love is the thing which gives meaning to life, and it can overcome great obstacles to accomplish its purpose. It can be our source to succeed but it can also be the source of our failures. It also tells that with Him we can surpass all triumphs and will always lead us to the right path. Also, it teaches us that we will not be alone because God is always with us we just need to believe and worship Him, and he will always help us in unknown ways so we should not lose hope. A small or little hope can turn into a miracle.