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Rizal, the Romantic There were at least nine women linked with Rizal; namely Segunda Katigbak, Leonor

Valenzuela, Leonor Rivera, Consuelo Ortiga, O-Sei San, Gertrude Beckette, Nelly Boustead, Suzanne Jacoby and Josephine Bracken. These women might have been beguiled by his intelligence, charm and wit. Segunda Katigbak Segunda Katigbak was her puppy love. Unfortunately, his first love was engaged to be married to a town mate- Manuel Luz. After his admiration for a short girl in the person of Segunda. Casa de Segunda, the Luz Katigbak ancestral house situated along Calle Rizal in Lipa City, is awash with stories of grandeur and romance. In the 19th century, the town of Lipa was the sole supplier of coffee to the world and the towns aristocrats lived much like their Spanish counterparts in their customs, manners and social forms. Surrounded by the trappings of great prosperity, their homes were said to occupy entire city blocks bounded by gardens and bountiful orchards. They entertained in grand style. Social gatherings were marked by orchestral music and the latest dances from Europe. Tables were laden with fine china, crystal and silver imported from France. Behind the scenes, cooks and servants worked all day long to turn out courses of special Spanish dishes and desserts. The Luz and Katigbak clans, the leading families of the town, were not only well-versed in the fine art of living, they were a family of artists, scholars, political leaders many of them educated in the best schools in Europe. Casa de Segunda, declared a heritage house by the National Historical Commission, is a reflection of a gentler time and a genteel way of life. Built in the 1880s it is a typical bahay na bato, said to be Spanish in architecture yet essentially a tropical house. Wide windows open to views of flowering trees and allow the cool breezes of Lipa of flow into the second floor living room. Hardwood floors and period furnishings are the dominant features of this home. Traditional lounge chairs with a cane weave back, and rocking chairs situated near the windows were designed for comfort and relaxation. An upper terrace or azotea looks out to mango, peppercorn and alagao trees. In this old stone home once lived a lady who is best known as Jose Rizals first love. Segunda Solis Katigbak was 14 years old when she first met Rizal, and Rizal was 16 and had just graduated from Ateneo. Though their initial meeting was brief, it left an indelible impression on our national hero who from the first instance was smitten with the allure of Segunda. It is often difficult to put into words what draws us to the object of our affection, and for Rizal it was no different. In his diary, Rizal muses: I dont know what alluring something was all over her being. She was not the most beautiful woman I have seen but I had never seen one more bewitching or alluring. Leonor Valenzuela a tall girl from Pagsanjan. Rizal send her love notes written in invisible ink, that could only be deciphered over the warmth of the lamp or candle. He visited her on the eve of his departure to Spain and bade her a last goodbye. Nicknamed Orang, Leonor Valenzuela was commonly described as a tall girl with regal bearing who was Rizals province-mate. She was the daughter of Capitan Juan and Capitana Sanday Valenzuela, who were from Pagsanjan, Laguna. Orang was Rizals neighbor when he boarded in the house of Doa Concha Leyva in Intramuros during his sophomore year at the University of Santo Tomas as medicine student. To finally move on perhaps from his unsuccessful love story with Segunda Katigbak, Rizal frequently visited Orangs house with or without social gatherings. The proofs that Rizal indeed courted her were the love letters he sent her. His love notes were mysteriously written in invisible ink made of common table salt and water, which

could be read by heating the note over a candle or lamp. More than a manifestation of Rizals knowledge of chemistry, his magical love notes to Orang, one ca n say, are a proof that he wanted to keep the courtship private. But why would he want to make it secret? Family Leonor was the daughter of Capitan Juan and Capitana Sanday Valenzuela, who were from Pagsanjan, Laguna. Relationship with Rizal Rizal boarded in the house of Doa Concha Leyva in Intramuros during his sophomore year on medicine at the University of Santo Tomas. Orangs family was the Rizals' neighbor back then. Rizal was a regular visitor in Orangs house especially during social gatherings. He courted Orang and sent her love notes in invisible ink. The ink was made of common table salt and water that can only be deciphered using the warmth of a lamp or candle. When Rizal left for Europe, he left the two Leonors. It was only his friend Jose M. Cecilio or Chenggoy who told stories about them. This was one of his letters to Rizal about the cold gap between the two Leonors: nagpipilit ang munting kasera (Leonor Rivera) na makita si Orang, pero dahil natatakpan ng isang belong puti, hindi naming nakilala nang dumaan ang prusisyon sa tapat ng bahay. Sinabi sa akin ni O(rang) na sabihin ko raw sa munting kasera na hindi siya kumakaribal sa pag-iibigan ninyo. Que gulay, tukayo, anong gulo itong idinudulot natin sa mga dalagang ito! Orang, unlike Leonor Rivera, didnt feel so much grief because of Rizal departure. In fact, she still accepted suitors and attended social parties. It was said that Orang married an employee of a trade house but it was never confirmed. Leonor Rivera Leonor Rivera, his sweetheart for 11 years played the greatest influence in keeping him from falling in love with other women during his travel. Unfortunately, Leonors mother disapproved of her daughters relationship with Rizal, who was then a known filibustero. She hid from Leon or all letters sent to her sweetheart. Leonor believing that Rizal had already forgotten her, sadly consented her to marry the Englishman Henry Kipping, her mothers choice. Leonor Rivera Kipping (11 April 1867 28 August 1893)[1] was the childhood sweetheart, and lover by correspondence[2] of Philippine national hero Jos Rizal. Rivera was the greatest influence in preventing Rizal from falling in love with other women while Rizal was traveling outside the Philippines.[3] Rivera's romantic relationship with Rizal lasted for eight years.[4] She was immortalized by Rizal as the character Mara Clara in the Spanish-language novel Noli Me Tangere.[2] Her original hometown is in Camiling, Tarlac. Description Leonor Rivera, a native of Camiling, Tarlac, was the daughter of Antonio Rivera and Silvestra Bauzon.[1] Her father (whom Rizal calls "Uncle Antonio" in his letters) is a cousin of Rizal's father, Francisco Mercado.[5] Austin Coates, Rizals European biographer, described Rivera in Rizal: Philippin e Nationalist and Martyr as a pretty woman whose physical features included having a high forehead, soft and wavy hair, a face that supported almond eyes, small and pensive mouth, and engaging dimples. Furthermore, Rivera was a talented, mature, and intelligent lady who played the piano[2][6] and was gifted with a charming singing voice.[2] Rivera studied at La Concordia College in Manila.[6] Family background Riveras family resided in Dagupan from 1890 to 1891, when the railroad line between Manila and Dagupan was being constructed. Her parents had a clothing merchandise business there. The Riveras first lived on Torres Bugallon Avenue in a property belonging to Don Alejandro Venteres and Doa Rosario Laurel Villamil, a couple closely connected to the family. The family later moved to a house belonging to Don Andres Palaganas, a person related to Don Venteres by affinity. The son of Don

Palaganas, Ciriaco (a former Dagupan municipal president), was the husband of Don Venteress relative Paula Venteres. The second residence of the Riveras was located at a place presently known as Rivera Street.[6] Relationship with Rizal A crayon sketch of Leonor Rivera drawn by Jos Rizal. Leonor Rivera and Rizal first met in Manila when Rivera was only 13 years old. When Rizal left for Europe on May 3, 1882, Rivera was 15 years of age. Their correspondence began when Rizal left a poem for Rivera saying farewell. Their letters to each other slowly became romantic. The correspondence between Rivera and Rizal kept Rizal focused on his studies in Europe. They employed codes in their letters because Riveras mother did not favor Rizal as a suitor for Rivera. A letter from Mariano Catigbac dated June 27, 1884 referred to Rivera as Rizals betrothed. Catigbac describ ed Rivera as having been greatly affected by Rizals departure, frequently sick because of insomnia. When Rizal returned to the Philippines on August 5, 1887, Rivera was no longer living in Manila because she and her family had moved back to Dagupan, Pangasinan. Rizal wanted to meet Rivera and Rivera also wanted to see Rizal, but both were prohibited by their fathers. Rizal was forbidden by his father Francisco Mercado in order to avoid putting the Rivera family in danger because at the time Rizal was already labeled by the Spaniards as a filibustero or subversive[3] because of the contents of his novel Noli Me Tangere. Rizal wanted to marry Rivera while he was still in the Philippines because of Riveras uncomplaining fidelity. Rizal asked permission from his father one more time before his second departure from the Philippines. The meeting never happened. In 1888, Rizal stopped receiving letters from Rivera for a year, although Rizal kept sending letters to Rivera. The reason for Riveras year of silence was the connivance between Riveras mother and the Englishman named Henry Charles Kipping, a railway engineer who fell in love with Rivera and was favored by Riveras mother. Consuelo Ortiga Consuelo Ortiga y Rey, the prettier of Don Pablo Ortigas daughters, fell in love with him. He dedicated to her A la Senorita C.O. y R., which became one of his best poems. The Ortiga's residence in Madrid was frequented by Rizal and his compatriots. He probably fell in love with her and Consuelo apparently asked him for romantic verses. He suddenly backed out before the relationship turned into a serious romance, because he wanted to remain loyal to Leonor Rivera and he did not want to destroy his friendship with Eduardo de Lete who was madly in love with Consuelo. Consuelo Ortiga y Perz or Consuelo Ortiga y Rey was one of the many women in Dr. Jose Rizals life. She was the daughter of Don Pablo Ortiga y Rey, the then-Alcalde of Manila and president of the Consejo de Filipinas in Madrid. Her father, intimately called El Padre Eterno (The Eternal Father) by the Filipino expatriates, often held informal gatherings for the students in his home. The Ortigas residence was situated in Madrid and was also frequented by Dr. Jose Rizal and his compatriots. Consuelo and Rizals love affair was further evidenced by the writings of Consuelo in her diary where she kept the record of her relationship with Rizal. Moreover, Rizal dedicated his poem A La Seorita C.O. y R. to Consuelo. The said poem is now dubbed as one of the best po ems written by Rizal. The diary According to Consuelos diary, she met Rizal on September 16, 1882 when she was introduced to two Filipinos named Rizal and Perio. However, the first lengthy conversation happened in January 18, 1883. Consuelo wrote: Rizal talked with me for a long time, almost the whole night. He told me that I was very talented, that I was very diplomatic, and that he was going to see if he could extract some truth from me within two weeks; that I was mysterious and that I had a veil over my ideas She also wrote: Rizal told me that he detested amiable women because when they smiled, men imagined that they did so for something else. As he had told me the night before that I was very amiable, I understood that he meant it and I left him so that he would not make a mistake. A man should first study the ground and if he sees that the smile is for everybody he ought not to pay attention to her smiles because in distributing them so freely they lose all their meaning. Based on Consuelos writings, Rizal seemed to have some reservations which keep him from initially pursuing Consuelo. However, these reservations were finally worn down in February 26, 1883 when Consuelo wrote:

. . . Rizal is also in love; he has not declared this but almost, al most. He told me last night that he had a sickness that would not leave him except when traveling and that was only perchance. Consuelos tone was filled with hope and expectation. However, Eduardo de Lete, one of Consuelos suitors and Rizals compatriot as well, contended for her attention. Consuelo originally preferred Lete, but she was evidently attracted to Rizal and was worried about his intense feelings for her. She wrote: He also told me and I understood why, that two brothers had killed each othe r because both played the same card, that is, because both loved the same woman. He said that he had taken notice of one who was very tall for him but in spite of the fact that he had done it to amuse himself, it was useless. I listened to him with pleasure because he talks well and I fear that because of that he may think that Im giving him hope, as it is in reality, but as it happens that I like his conversation, I abandon myself to it and then when he goes away, Im sorry; he comes and again I do the same thing. Because Consuelo was indeed pretty, she also had to deal with other suitors aside from Rizal and Lete. It was also during that time when the brothers Maximino and Antonio Paterno visit her regularly. Consuelo seemed to be thorned between many good men but after a series of self-contemplation, ended up preferring Rizal among these good men. I find myself in a position of not knowing which side to take: Lete on one side, Rizal on the other, on another the two brothers; all attack and I have nothing with which to defend myself except my head, for I dont see, as I go nowhere, my former admirers, though it would be the same should I see them. Then I had more suitors than now and I dont know if for that very reason I didnt give them altogether even ten minutes. Now, on the other hand, I think of them and my opinion is divided between Rizal and Lete. The first one tempts me by his manner of speaking and because he seems to me a serious lad, though formal ones frighten me. The content of Consuelos diary portrayed a surprising image of our national hero. A frank, romantic Dr. Jose Rizal who shamelessly expresses his feelings for such a wonderful woman. Consuelo wrote on February 24, 1883: Last night as in former times I was talking with Rizal. He said that now if he would make love to a girl, he would do it with the mouth, inasmuch as my heart is dry, as you know. This is what I vaguely recall of our conversation; but in the struggle of that soul, in the profound meaning of his words that he articulated one by one underlining them with the accents of passion that he could ill conceal, there was a moment when I seemed to hear him (presumption of my youth, perhaps!) say: Youre the woman who has performed that miracle, I love you, and certainly, or my heart deceives me greatly, who know if the satisfaction of being loved, of the mere fact of being so, certainly it seemed to me that he was at the point of saying it, but he refrained from doing so, not so much for the fear of being repulsed but for not being a traitor to that friend, but I can say without fear of making a mistake that there passed through his imagination all that I wrote and last night he was happy and unfortunate at the same time. After some time, Rizal eventually gave up his romantic intentions for Consuelo. Rizal did not want to compete with Lete, whom he treated as a brother. He was also still in love with Leonor. Consuelo, on her part, admitted to Rizal that she could not reciprocate his love, as he had wished. Rizal told me the other night that they had written him telling him that his family would be glad if he would return to the Philippines in June. His manner of saying it made me understand that it was like flight Conversing with me he said that he had not yet understood me, that he didnt know what I think of him. As a friend, I said to him. Would you want more? Its true thats enough, he replied with a slight irony. The intimate records on Consuelos diary ended on May 28, 1884 when Rizal came to their house on e morning to bid farewell. Until the very end, Consuelo could not help but express her admiration with Rizals ingenious humor and intelligence.

Last night many came to bid us farewell. Rizal was the first to arrive. I had on a morning cape that I had made out of the cloth that Rizal had given me as a present. I made a grand impression. I showed it to him saying: So you see Ive fulfilled my promise; Im dressed like a doll. Rizal was expressive and bolder than other times, and I mean by this that he to ld me some things more clearly; but, as always, he used other persons and images to tell me what he wanted to say. It pleases me to have to divine his thoughts veiled with innumerable metaphors and euphemisms, a thing which is not very difficult for me to understand as I have the key. Discovery of the diary The copy of the diary came from Mr. Eduardo de Lete, one of Rizals contemporaries who became the fiance of Consuelo. O Sei San O Sei San, a Japanese samurais daughter taught Rizal the Japanese art of painting known as su-mie. She also helped Rizal improve his knowledge of Japanese language. If Rizal was a man without a patriotic mission, he would have married this lovely and intelligent woman and lived a stable and happy life with her in Japan because Spanish legation there offered him a lucrative job. O Sei San was a nickname given to Seiko Usui, a native of Japan. She had an intimate relationship with Jose Rizal during Rizals vacation on Yokohama. She was 23 years old when she met Rizal. Her former status as a daughter of samurai gave her an addresss of "O Sei San" and "The Honorable Miss Sei". Historical Background Usuis family originally came from Chiba, nearby the present Narita Airport remote downtown Tokyo. Her father was a former samurai who turned to be a businessman that owned a trading store in Yokohama. Seikos older brother ueno was killed during the revolt of Shogitai against Meiji. The loss of her brother made Seiko depressed, so to ease her resentment, the family provided her a playmate. They adopted an orphan from Nagasaki named Yoshi. Seiko had enough nurturing that gave her fluency both in English and French. Description Seiko was a quintessential Japanese lady, timid yet learned with a high sense culture. As Rizal had stated on his letter dated April 13, 1888, he regarded her as: you have the color of Camelia, its freshness, its elegance. Relationship with Rizal Rizal first met her after he had moved to the Spanish Legation in the Azabu district of Tokyo, where O Sei San regularly work, since then the two were in regular encounter. O Sei San served as Rizals enterpreter during his stay in Japan on February 28 to April 13, 1888. She helped Rizal to be accustomed to Japanese culture, she taught him to read and write Nihongo, and introduced him to Japanese style of painting. She had been a constant comrade of Rizal, together they visited The Imperial Art Gallery, The Imperial Library, various universities, the Shokubutsu-en (Botanical Garden), the Hibiya Park, and the picturesque shrines. Her beauty and affection almost tempted Rizal to settle down in Japan. On April 13, 1888 Rizal left Yokohama thru the Belgic steamer bound to United States, leaving O-Sei-Sans behind. With a heavy heart he wrote to her. O-Sei-San, Sayonara, Sayonara! I have spent a happy golden month; I do not know if I can have another The Ashanti (or Asante) Empire (or Confederacy), also Asanteman (17011957), was a West Africa sovereign state of the ethnic Akan people of Ashanti, Brong-Ahafo, Central region, Eastern region, Greater Accra region and Western region currently South Ghana. The Ashantis (or Asantefo) are of Akan origin, the Ashantis are a powerful, militaristic and highly disciplined society of West Africa inhabiting an area known as "Akanland". Their military power, which came from effective strategy and an early adoption of European firearms, created an empire that stretched from central Ghana to present-day Benin and Ivory Coast, bordered by the Dagomba kingdom to the north and Dahomey to the east. Due to the empire's military prowess, wealth, architecture, sophisticated hierarchy and

culture, the Ashanti empire had one of the largest historiographies by European, primarily British, sources of any indigenous Sub-Saharan African political entity. From the 17th century AD, Asanteman king Osei Tutu (c.1695 1717), with the help of accomplice Okomfo Anokye, established the Kingdom of Asanteman, with the Golden Stool as a symbol of Asante unity and spirit. Osei Tutu engaged in a massive Asante territorial expansion.[3] He built up the army based on the Ashantis introducing new organization and turning a disciplined paramilitary and militia into an effective fighting machine.[3] In 1701, the Asanteman army conquered Denkyira, giving Ashantis access to the Gulf of Guinea and the Atlantic Ocean coastal trade with Europeans, notably the Dutch. King Opoku Ware I (1720 1745) engaged in further Akan territorial expansion, and king Kusi Obodom (1750 1764) succeeded king Opoku Ware I.[3] Asante king Osei Kwadwo (1764 1777) imposed administrative reforms that allowed Asanteman to be governed effectively. King Osei Kwame Panyin (1777 1803), and King Osei Tutu Kwame (1804 1824) continued Asanteman territorial consolidation. Gertrude Beckett While Rizal was in London annotating the Sucesos de las Islas Filipinas, he boarded in the house of the Beckett family, within walking distance of the British Museum. Gertrude, a blue-eyed and buxom girl was the oldest of the three Beckett daughters. She fell in love with Rizal. Tottie helped him in his painting and sculpture. But Rizal suddenly left London for Paris to avoid Gertrude, who was seriously in love with him. Before leaving London, he was able to finish the group carving of the Beckett sisters. He gave the group carving to Gertrude as a sign of their brief relationship. Gertrude was the daughter of Rizals landlordCharles Beckett who is an organist at St. Pauls Church in London. Coming from brief stay in Japan and the United States of America, Rizal chose to live in the capital city of the United Kingdom on May, 1888. The oldest of the three (some say four) Beckett sisters, Gertrude (also called Gettie or Tottie) was a curvy lady with cheerful blue eyes, brown hair, rosy cheeks, and thin lips. (Based on the pictures of Rizals girlfriends now available over the internet, one can even argue that Gertrude is the most beautiful.) This English girl (who probably spoke the British accent of the Harry Potter characters) fell in love with Rizal. The more-than-normal assistance she gave to the Filipino boarder betrayed her special feelings for him. She showered him with all her attention and assisted him in his painting and sculpturing. With her aid, Rizal finished some sculptural works like the Prometheus Bound, The Triumph of Death over Life, and The Triumph of Science over Death. Away from his home, it was just normal for Rizal to find enjoyment in Gertrudes loving service. Rizal called her by her nickname Gettie and she affectionately called him Pettie. It was said that their friendship glided towards romance, but Rizal, for some reasons, was alleged to have ultimately backed out. Some sources nonetheless suggest that their relationship was just a one-sided love affair as Rizal never really reciprocated her love. Either way, it was clear that the couple did not end up as husband and wife as Rizal chose to leave London on March 19, 1889 so that Gertrude may forget him. As Rizals compatriots like

Marcelo del Pilar put it, Rizal left London because he was running away from a girl. Before leaving though, he finished his composite carving of the heads of the Beckett sistersand gave it to Gettie as a souvenir.
Nellie Boustead Rizal having lost Leonor Rivera, entertained the thought of courting other ladies. While a guest of the Boustead family at their residence in the resort city of Biarritz, he had befriended the two pretty daughters of his host, Eduardo Boustead. Rizal used to fence with the sisters at the studio of Juan Luna. Antonio Luna, Juans brother and also a frequent visitor of the Bousteads, courted Nellie but she was deeply infatuated with Rizal. In a party held by Filipinos in Madrid, a drunken Antonio Luna uttered unsavory remarks against Nellie Boustead. This prompted Rizal to challenge Luna into a duel. Fortunately, Luna apologized to Rizal, thus averting tragedy for the compatriots. Their love affair unfortunately did not end in marriage. It failed because Rizal refused to be converted to the Protestant faith, as Nellie demanded and Nellies mother did not like a physician without enough paying clientele to be a son-in-law. The lovers, however, parted as good friends when Rizal left Europe. Perceiving Jose Rizals imminent courtship to her, his compatriot Marcelo H. del Pilar teased the lover

boy by suggesting that his first novel should be renamed Nelly Me Tangere. Nellie Boustead, also called Nelly, was the younger of the two pretty daughters of the wealthy businessman Eduardo Boustead, son of a rich British trader, who went to the Orient in 1826. The Bousteads hosted Rizals stay in Biarritz in February 1891 at their winter residence, Villa Eliada on the superb French Riviera. Rizal had befriended the family back in 1889-90 and used to fence with the Anglo-Filipino Boustead sisters (Adelina and Nellie) at the studio of Juan Luna. Having learned Leonor Riveras marriage to Henry Kipping, Rizal entertained the idea of having romantic relation with the highly educated, cheerful, athletic, beautiful, and morally upright Nellie. He wrote some of his friends (though remarkably except Ferdinand Blumentritt) about his affection for Nelly and his idea of proposing marriage to her. His friends seemed to be supportive of his intentions. Tomas Arejola, for instance, wrote him: if Mademoiselle Boustead suits you, court her, and marry her, and we are here to applaud such a good act. (Zaide, p. 184). Even Antonio Luna, who had been Nellys fianc, explicitly permitted Rizal to court and marry her. It could be remembered that Jose and Antonio nearly had a deadly duel before when he (Antonio), being drunk one time, made negative remarks on their common denominator. As regards Joses courtship to Nelly later, Antonio gentlemanly conceded to Rizal through a letter: With respect to Nelly, frankly, I think there is nothing between us more than one of those friendships enlivened by being fellow countrymen. It seems to me that there is nothing more. My word of honor. I had been her fianc, we wrote to each other. I like her because I knew how worthy she was, but circumstances beyond our control made all that happiness one cherished evaporate. She is good; she is naturally endowed with qualities admirable in a young woman and I believe that she will bring happiness not only to you but to any other man who is worthy of herI congratulate you as one congratulates a friend. Congratulatons!(as quoted by Zaide, pp. 184 -185) As Nelly had long been infatuated to Rizal, she reciprocated his affection and they officially became an item. With Nelly, Rizal enjoyed his stay in Biarritz as he had many lovely moonlight nights with her. Inspired by her company, Rizal was also able to work on the last part of his second novel at the Bousteds residence. Though very much ideal, Nelly-and-Joses lovely relationship unfortunately did not end up in marriage. Nellys mothera Filipina who came from the rich Genato family in Manilawas not in favor of taking as a son-in-law a man who could not provide a sure stable future for her daughter. On top of this, Rizal refused to be converted in Protestantism which Nellie demanded. Later in his life, Rizal would state in his letter, had I held religion as a matter of convenience or an art getting along in this life I would now be a rich man, free, and covered with honors. (Zaide, p. 185) The breakup between the very civil and educated couple was far from bitter as the two parted as friends. When Rizal was about to leave Europe in April 1891, Nelly sent him a goodbye letter, saying: Now that you are leaving I wish you a happy trip and may you triumph in your undertakings, and above all, may the Lord look down on you with favor and guide your way giving you much blessings, and may your learn to enjoy! My remembrance will accompany you as also my prayers. Suzanne Jacoby In 1890, Rizal moved to Brussels because of the high cost of living in Paris. In Brussels, he lived in the boarding house of the two Jacoby sisters. In time, they fell deeply in love with each other. Suzanne cried when Rizal left Brussels and wrote him when he was in Madrid. When Jose Rizal left her place, her dream was to follow him and to travel with the Filipino lover boy who was always in her thoughts. Suzanne Jacoby was a Belgian lady whom Rizal met when he was 29. To somewhat economize in his living expenses, he left the expensive city of Paris and went to Belgium in January 1890. Along with his friend Jose Albert, Rizal arrived in Brussels on February 2 and stayed in the boarding house managed by two Jacoby sisters, Suzanne and Marie (some references say Catherina and Suzanna). It was said that Rizal had a transitory romance with the petite niece of his landladies, Suzanne. In Rizals 6-month stay in the boarding house, Suzanne, also called Petite, got to know and was attracted to the skillful and enigmatic Filipino doctor. Jose might have had a somewhat romantic intimacy with Petitea relationship which was probably comparable to todays mutual understanding (like what Rizal possibly had with Gertrude Beckett). Presumably, Petite and Jose (who was at one time called Pettie by Beckett) had together enjoyed the merriments of Belgiums summertime

festival of 1890 with its multicolored costumes, animated floats, and lively crowds. But the relationship was most likely not that serious as Rizal did not mention her in his letters to his intimate friends. Informing Antonio Luna of his life in Brussels, Rizal just talked about going to the clinic, working and studying, reading and writing, and practicing at the Sala de Armas and gymnasium. Historically, his affair with Suzanne could not possibly blossom as Rizal, that time, was busy writing the Fili, contributing for La Solidaridad, and worrying for his family as regards the worsening Calamba agrarian trouble. Suzanne shed tears when Rizal left Belgium toward the beginning of August, 1890. He was said to have made Suzannes sculpture which he unexplainably gave to his friend Valentin Ventura. Leaving Brussels, Rizal left the young Suzanne a box of chocolates. Two months later, she wrote him a letter, saying: After your departure, I did not take the chocolate. The box is still intact as on the day of your parting. Dont delay too long writing us because I wear out the soles of my shoes for running to the mailbox to see if there is a letter from you. There will never be any home in which you are so loved as in that in Brussels, so, you little bad boy, hurry up and come back In her another letter, she was mentioning of Rizals letter to her, suggesting that the Filipino in Madr id probably replied to her at least once. From her letter though, we can glean that the affection was (already) one-sided: Where are you now? Do you think of me once in a while? I am reminded of our tender conversations, reading your letter, although it is cold and indifferent. Here in your letter I have something which makes up for your absence. How pleased I would be to follow you, to travel with you who are always in my thoughts. You wish me all kinds of luck, but forget that in the absence of a beloved one a tender heart cannot feel happy. A thousand things serve to distract your mind, my friend; but in my case, I am sad, lonely, always alone with my thoughts nothing, absolutely nothing relieves my sorrow. Are you coming back? Thats what I want and desire most ardently you cannot refuse me. I do not despair and I limit myself to murmuring against time which runs so fast when it carries us toward a separation but goes so slowly when its bringing us together again. I feel very unhappy thinking that perhaps I might never see you again. Goodbye! You know with one word you can make me very happy. Arent you going to write to me? To her surprise, Rizal returned to Brussels by the middle of April 1891 and stayed again in the Jacobys boarding house. Rizals return however was not specifically for Suzanne for the hero just busied himself revising and finalizing the manuscript of El Fili for publication. On July 5, 1891, Rizal bade goodbye to Brussels and Suzanne, never to come back again in Belgium and in her arms. Lately, a certain Belgian named Pros Slachmuylders claimed that Rizal had romance with his landladies niece named Suzanna Thill, not with Suzanne Jacoby. Thill was said to be 16 years old when Rizal was in Belgium in 1890. One hundred and seventeen (117) years after Rizal left Belgium, Slachmuylders group unveiled in 2007 a historical marker which commemorates Rizals stay in Brussels. Josephine Bracken In the last days of February 1895, while still in Dapitan, Rizal met an 18-year old petite Irish girl, with bold blue eyes, brown hair and a happy disposition. She was Josephine Bracken, the adopted daughter of George Taufer from Hong Kong, who came to Dapitan to seek Rizal for eye treatment. Rizal was physically attracted to her. His loneliness and boredom must have taken the measure of him and what could be a better diversion that to fall in love again. But the Rizal sisters suspected Josephine as an agent of the friars and they considered her as a threat to Rizals security. Rizal asked Josephine to marry him, but she was not yet ready to make a decision due to her responsibility to the blind Taufer. Since Taufers blindness was untreatable, he left for Hon Kong on March 1895. Josephine stayed with Rizals family in Manila. Upon her return to Dapitan, Rizal tried to arrange with Father Antonio Obach for their marriage. However, the priest wanted a retraction as a precondition before marrying them. Rizal upon the advice of his family and friends and with Josephines consent took her as his wife even without the Church blessings. Josephine later give birth

prematurely to a stillborn baby, a result of some incidence, which might have shocked or frightened her.

Marie Josephine Leopoldine Bracken (August 9, 1876 March 15, 1902) was the common-law wife of Philippine national hero Jos Rizal during his exile in Dapitan in the province of Zamboanga del Norte in the southern Philippines.[2][3][4] In the early morning hours of December 30, 1896, the day of his execution by firing squad, the couple was married in Fort Santiago, the place of his incarceration, following a reconciliation with the Catholic Church. The marriage, though, is disputed by some sectors because no records were found regarding the union, discounting the unusual events of that day, even if it was attested by Josephine herself and the officiating priest. Early life Bracken was born in Victoria Barracks in Hong Kong on August 9, 1876 to Irish parents [4] James Bracken, a corporal in the British Army, and Elizabeth Jane McBride, who were married on May 3, 1868 in Belfast, Ireland. After her mother died shortly after childbirth, her father gave her up for adoption. She was taken in by her godfather, American George Taufer, a blind fairly well-to-do engineer of the pumping plant of the Hong Kong Fire Department, and his late Portuguese wife. He later remarried another Portuguese lady from Macau, Francesca Spencer, with whom he had another daughter.[8] Relationship with Rizal Bracken later recommended that her blind adoptive father see Rizal, who was a respected ophthalmologist and had practiced in Hong Kong.[9] By this time, he was a political exile in Dapitan, Zamboanga del Norte in southern Philippines. The family sailed to the Philippines and arrived in Manila on February 5, 1895, and later that month Josephine and Mr. Taufer sailed to Dapitan. Taufer's double cataract was beyond Rizal's help, but the physician fell in love with Bracken. Mr. Taufner vehemently opposed the union, but finally listened to reason. Josephine accompanied her father to Manila on his way back home, together with Rizal's sister, Narcisa, on March 14, 1895. Rizal applied for marriage but because of his writings and political stance, the local priest, Father Obach, would only agree to the ceremony if Rizal could get a permission from the Bishop of Cebu. Either the Bishop did not write him back or Rizal was not able to mail the letter because of the sudden departure of Mr. Taufer. Before heading back to Dapitan to live with Rizal, Josephine introduced herself to members of his family in Manila. His mother suggested a civil marriage which she believed as a lesser sacrament but is free from hypocrisy, and would be less sinful to Rizal's conscience, than making any sort of political retraction.[2] Nevertheless, Bracken and Rizal lived together in Barangay Talisay in Dapitan as husband and wife in July 1895. The couple had a child born prematurely, Francsco Rizal y Bracken, who died after only a few hours.

RIZALS POEM FOR CONSUELO Why ask for those unintellectual verses that once, insane with grief, I sang aghast? Or are you may be throwing in my face my rank ingratitude, my bitter past? Why resurrect unhappy memories now when the heart awaits from love a sign, or call the night when day begins to smile, not knowing if another day will shine? You wish to learn the cause of this dejection delirium of despair that anguish wove? You wish to know the wherefore of such sorrows,

and why, a young soul, I sing not of love? Oh, may you never know why! For the reason brings melancholy but may set you laughing. Down with my corpse into the grave shall go another corpse that's buried in my stuffing! Something impossible, ambition, madness, dreams of the soul, a passion and its throes Oh, drink the nectar that life has to offer and let the bitter dregs in peace repose! Again I feel the impenetrable shadows shrouding the soul with the thick veils of night: a mere bud only, not a lovely flower, because it's destitute of air and light Behold them: my poor verses, my damned brood and sorrow suckled each and every brat! Oh, they know well to what they owe their being, and maybe they themselves will tell you what. Rizals admiration for Consuelo was immortalized by the poem he wrote, A La Seorita C.O. y R. This poem which is now subjectively regarded as one of Rizals best was written either as a reaction to Consuelos request or out of Rizals pure volition as an admirer. Ultimately though, Rizal really had to give up his feeling for Consuelo for he was then still engaged to Leonor Rivera.

NELLIE BOUSTEAD Nellie Boustead, 24 April 1891 Fragment of a letter of Miss Boustead to Rizal She talks about her religion Wishes Rizal a happy trip home dated April 24, 1891. I see (that) you are decided to leave (. . .) inasmuch as you have the (idea of defending yourself) against the attacks of your (enemies) making yourself the subject of another country provided it is not Spain (be)cause you will remain a Filipino as I am (. . .) being for the moment an English subject! It is true that assuring ones self of the protection of God, nothing can happen without His will but in the end He lets us also have the care of protecting ourselves. He wants that His creatures should work also and not remain with crossed arms waiting for His aid. He has given us sufficient intelligence for ourselves in the things of this (world) because this (. . .) intelligence does not (. . .) for he who looks (. . .) He wants them that (we give Him our hearts) and ask His (help) and from His Spirit (to understand) what He wants of us. (For) we, ourselves, are in ourselves capable, in spite of the extreme (ignorance) that we can have in understanding His precepts. He gives us His blessing, His grace. For those who are (and who) He has placed us in His services it is difficult, to understand and to (serve) but (once) in the current he who comes (near Him), he, who after having examined and studied what He has taught us by many of His servers, all results easy to him and notes that His yoke is easier to carry than that which the sciences here below offer us, those which are not founded but by (those) who want to impose their ideas and their (beliefs). You tell me that you want to follow the laws of Christ. Well then, I am very contented and I hope that the Lord will give you more learning, (Gods learning) in order to finish understanding them perfectly, then you and I (will join) to make these two sole (forces which) are the causes of these difficulties and our separation unnecessary. If my real estates can constitute a motive for difficulties in the eyes of my parents, on my part and on that of God there is no other but This Only Point, once that is so, be a creature of God, an heir with me and with those who fulfill His will, of the Kingdom of heaven where we shall be with Him for all eternity. I should like to know if this hope has sometimes crossed (your mind), if you sometimes have struggled to conquer (this crown) of life with those who simply want (to receive it), who are purified in the blood of the Lamb, not of the carnal lamb, but of the Son (of) God who gave His life for us (. . .) and who, by this resurrection has (opened) for us the door of (Heaven). If you are really determined to continue this career of careers, I can not show you nothing (but a) Book

and this is that which you undervalued (for having) read it with a spirit entirely distinct from he who (wants) to find the treasure which is (precious) to the world although it is so clearly demonstrated by those who thirst to (obtain) the security of the love of the Lord. You will say that I am giving you a sermon here, but what more interesting than this do you want me to tell you? This case is what concerns us most, it is the case in which you find yourself with (. . .) difficulty to understand. I advise you noting is needed (but) for you to wait that he (. . .) God can give you the (. . . solution) made, it is necessary that you promise on your part, for one cannot (attain) any success without sacrifice. (Thus as) you have the will for the (things) of the earth it is well that you have it in order to receive the riches from above. Why do you speak to me so slightly of conquering or dying? What would you want me to have if I let you die or to kill you with so much boredom? If you wish that I think of you during your absence from this side of the globe, make it so that you return safe and safe. It will be (perhaps too) bad for you but not (for) me if you will die! You should remember how little disposed I was to (listen) when (you began) to tell me your (feelings) towards me; the same with yours as with those of any other; (wherefore) I ended in giving way thus as also (in) treating you familiarly it is true that I did not go further because I awaited your decision over the matter of my condition, and wile it is not complied with full conviction it will be hardly possible for me to show you anything more; this does not prevent, however, my sentiments, from being (other) than the assumed indifference (that) I apparently show; others may not understand but I (believe) that you have understood. I have not promised you fidelity; may this promise not come out more than out of the mouth! I whom you find, like other persons, so little communicative and (sparing) in words! Now that you are leaving, I wish you a happy trip and may you triumph in your undertakings, and above all, may the Lord look down on you with favor and guide your way giving you much blessings, and may you learn to enjoy! My remembrance will accompany you as are also my prayers. Miss Johnson gave me your letters to read, those in (which) you tell something about me, (but never) those that she writes to you. I beg you not to write anymore to me but if you want to, have me reach news about you by writing to Miss Johnson. I shall content myself with that (now that) it is necessary that I resign) myself to separation. Now and then I shall send you more news (because) it will be more easy for me; it will make you happy, I guess your thoughts!! Good bye then! Remember, you must come back; ah! What if you meet some other woman down there!!! I am happy; I must be, but it is so hard sometimes to be so, especially, having to do it in a home (... difficult ...) happy moment that (...) come better (...) and Miss Johnson are the persons that prevent...) me better. The others to keep the (...) go (...) close the mouth? the eyes of auntie are cured but I assure you that her "character" is not. Finally, patience, always patience, may you someday not be obliged to (...) magnificent moonlight nights but (I...) out; for in the first place it is very humid on account of the frequent rains, and (...) headaches so that I abstain from being (...) not being with you anymore! What more excellent remedy you have given to my aunt to induce sleep! Four days ago I thought I would become mad because of a headache and (in ...) only person, she and (c...) that have come (to me...) not knowing what to do, at last she thought of your remedy and gave me a portion, five minutes after I slept tranquilly having forgotten completely the pain, I assure you shall have extreme care to preserve this prescription. I must finish, for it is now late and I shall have to go tomorrow morning to my "Hymn practicing."

Goodbye to Leonor And so it has arrived -- the fatal instant, the dismal injunction of my cruel fate; so it has come at last -- the moment, the date, when I must separate myself from you. Goodbye, Leonor, goodbye! I take my leave, leaving behind with you my lover's heart! Goodbye, Leonor: from here I now depart. O Melancholy absence! Ah, what pain!