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Studying history is important because it allows us to understand our past, which in turn

allows us to understand our present. If we want to know how and why our world is the way

it is today, we have to look to history for answers. This position paper will discuss about the

two major events happened in 1872. First was the 1872 Cavite Mutiny, and the other was

the martyrdom of the three martyr priests in the persons of Fathers Mariano Gomes, Jose

Burgos and Jacinto Zamora (GOMBURZA). However, not everyone knew that there were

different accounts in reference to the said event.

All Filipinos must know the different sides of the story since this event led to another tragic

yet meaningful part of our history ,the execution of GOMBURZA which in effect a major

factor in the awakening of nationalism among the Filipinos.


Cavite Mutiny, (Jan. 20, 1872), brief uprising of 200 Filipino troops and workers at the

Cavite arsenal, which became the excuse for Spanish repression of the embryonic

Philippine nationalist movement. Ironically, the harsh reaction of the Spanish authorities

served ultimately to promote the nationalist cause. The mutiny was quickly crushed, but the

Spanish regime under the reactionary governor Rafael de Izquierdo magnified the incident

and used it as an excuse to clamp down on those Filipinos who had been calling for

governmental reform. A number of Filipino intellectuals were seized and accused of

complicity with the mutineers. After a brief trial, three priests José Burgos, Jacinto Zamora,

and Mariano Gómez were publicly executed. The three subsequently became martyrs to

the cause of Philippine independence.

The Martyrdom of the three priest (GOMBURZA) which is the collective name of the three

martyred priest, tagged as the masterminds of the Cavite mutiny. The (GOMBURZA) were

prominent Filipino priest charge with treason and sedition. The Spanish clergy connected

the priest to the mutiny as part of a conspiracy to stifle the movement of secular priest who

desired to have their own parishes instead of being assistants to the regular friars.

There are two versions of the Cavite Mutiny the Spanish and Filipino Version. The accounts

of Dr.Trinidad H. Pardo de Tavera and the account of Jose Montero y Vidal. The

perspectives of the two historians created an controversy, Is Cavite mutiny an grand

conspiracy an attempt in overthrowing the Spanish government in the Philippines or Cavite

Mutiny is not a grand conspiracy but merely a labor issue.


Spanish Version of Cavite Mutiny

Jose Montero y Vidal was a Spanish historian who wrote the

book Historia General de Filipinas as the Spanish version of

Cavite Mutiny of 1872. Monteros account centered on how the

event was an attempt in overthrowing the Spanish government

in the Philippines. His account on mutiny was criticized as

woefully biased. Carlos Maria de la Torre was relieved from his

post with the establishment in Spain of a government which was less radical. Rafael

de Izquierdo assumed control of government. The abolition of the privileges enjoyed by

the laborers of the Cavite Arsenal of exemption from the tribute was the cause of the

insurrection. Underscore the reason for the revolution, abolition of privileges enjoyed by

the workers of Cavite Arsenal such as exemption from payment of tribute and being

employed in Polos Y Servicios (Force Labor). The presence of the native clergy, against

the Spanish friars conspired and supported the rebels.

Filipino Version of Cavite Mutiny

 According to Dr. Trinidad H. Pardo de Tavera, this was merely

a mutiny of native Filipino soldiers and laborers of Cavite

arsenal against the harsh policy of despotic Governor and

Captain-General Rafael de Izquierdo which abolished their old-

time privileges of exemption from paying the annual tribute and

from rendering forced labor (polo). Filipinos had great hopes of an improvement in the

affairs of their country. The loss of privileges resented by the soldiers and laborers was

the primary cause of the revolt. Dissatisfaction and discontent with the government

spread all over. Gen. Izquierdo made it clear that there will be no changes in the

government and intended to govern the people with a crucifix in one hand and a sword

in the other. He also established the school of arts and trades in the country. Those who

supported ex-Governor de la Torre were classed as persona sospechosas (suspects) a

term used to refuse to obey the wishes and whims of the authorities. The peace of the

colony was broken and culminated in the overthrow of the Spanish sovereignty in the

Philippine islands. Uprisings and assassinations in the entire garrison in Cavite were

disaffected. The uprising among the soldiers in Cavite was used as a powerful lever by

the Spanish residents and by the friars.

The Stand

By the evidences that been stated by the different sides, I will side into the Spanish

version of the Cavite Mutiny written by Jose Montero y Vidal which I believe that Cavite

Mutiny is a Grand Conspiracy


I believe that Cavite Mutiny is a Grand Conspiracy which deals with the Spanish version

or Spanish perspective. Even though I know that the abolition of the privileges enjoyed

by the laborers of the Cavite Arsenal of exemption from the tribute was the cause of the

insurrection but if we analyze or review it carefully we must look to the bigger views of

contents we must not focus on just only one argument that Cavite mutiny is just

because of labor issue it is just a simple and weak argument that leads to a widespread

uprising of the Filipinos. Also the Polos Y Servicios was mentiond a another reason why

Cavite Mutiny happened, but is there a theory that the Polos Y Servicios was there

before the Spaniards arrived here?. And lastly the GOMBURZA was not executed

because of the labor issue, they were executed because GOMBURZA was blamed for

being the masterminds of the Cavite Mutiny. It is a grand conspiracy because when the

GOMBURZA was being the defendants they were convicted guilty by the fiscal.

However the prosecutor used the interpretations of Gov. Izquierdo base on the report of

Izquierdo the three priest was the cause of the widespread uprising because of the

circulation of the events. That why the Cavite Mutiny was blamed to GOMBURZA so if

we analyze it the labor issue is not a strong argument that caused the Cavite Mutiny to

happen or occur.

I oppose to the perspective or the Version of Dr. Trinidad H. Pardo de Tavera,

because as I say we must look into the bigger side of the controversy not just focus on

one argument that the Cavite Mutiny was only because of the Labor Issues of the

Filipinos that caused an widespread uprising


I firmly believed that the Cavite Mutiny an event of the history is a Grand Conspiracy

and not a merely labor issue because of the gathered and shown evidences and also

because of satisfactory impact of the evidences that was given in the argument.