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Presented by:
Leo Angelo Dalingay
On December 6, 1896, the trial of Dr. Jose Rizal by a Spanish military
court for sedition, rebellion and conspiracy, began. This leads to his
execution and martyrdom.
Rizal, who was imprisoned first in Barcelona and later in Fort
Santiago, was implicated in the revolution which was launched in
August 1896 by the Katipunan led by Andres Bonifacio, whose aim was
to liberate the country from Spanish colonization.
At the time of his arrest, Rizal was supposed to leave for Cuba after
he was allowed by Spanish Governor-General Ramon Blanco, who was
sympathetic to him, to serve as a military surgeon in Cuba, where there
was also a revolution against Spain.
Before he left from his exile in Dapitan for Manila and
then for Spain, Rizal had issued a manifesto disavowing the
revolution and declaring that the education of Filipinos and
their achievement of a national identity were prerequisites to

Rizal was arrested while en route to Spain, imprisoned in

Barcelona and sent back later to Manila to stand trial. He
was charged with being a traitor to Spain and the
mastermind of the revolution.
He pleaded his innocence but he was still convicted on all
three charges of rebellion, sedition and conspiracy and
sentenced to death.

Earlier, Rizal was already considered as an enemy of the

state by the Spanish authorities with the publication of his
two great novels -- Noli Me Tangere and El Filibusterismo.

Thus, Rizal was executed on December 30, 1896 in

Bagumbayan (Luneta), which has been renamed Rizal Park
in his memory.
ARREST AND TRIAL: The Making of Katipunan Rizal had many visitors
in Dapitan, one of whom Florencio Namaan who was a spy for the friars.
Namaan posed as his relative named Pablo Mercado. He was sent to spy on
Rizal. Another visitor was Pio Valenzuela, who came as an emissary of the
Katipunan. At that time Andres Bonifacio had already become the Supremo of
the Katipunan. Dr. Pio Valenzuela went to Dapitan upon the instruction of
Andres Bonifacio and Emilio Aguinaldo who had agreed to consult and seek
the advice of Rizal as regards the impending revolution. On June 15, 1896, Dr.
Pio Valenzuela with his aide Rufino Magos boarded the ship S.S Venus for
Dapitan. Using the alias Procopio Bonifacio they came with a patient, a blind
man named Reymundo Mata. They were able to escape the prying eyes of
Spanish authori-ties and the three eventually sailed smoothly for their mission.
The steamship arrived in Dapitan on June 21, 1896 at about 5:30 p.m.
 The residence of Rizal was only 500 meters away from the port. Valenzuela
did not waste time. He immediately sought Rizal and informed him of the
existence of the Katipunan and the impending revolution. The following are
excerpts of the conversation between Rizal and Valenzuela: 1) Rizal did not
approve of a revolution without enough arms. 2) He stressed that they take all
necessary precautions to prevent the discovery of Katipunan. 3) He also
advised Katipunan to convince Antonio Luna to direct the campaign. 4) The
Katipunan should likewise recruit rich Filipinos, and that if they refused,
precautions should be taken that they (the rich) remain neutral. The next day,
June 22, 1896, their meeting ended when S.S. Venus whistled for its departure
to Manila. Upon his arrival in Manila on June 26, Dr. Pio Valenzuela
immediately relayed the contents of his meeting with Rizal to Andres Bonifacio.
The Brewing of the Revolution The sudden arrest
and deportation of Rizal to Dapitan gave birth to the
Katipunan. It was organized when all hopes for the
new spirit under the La Liga Filipina were aborted.
Andres Bonifacio, an ardent follower of Rizal who was
also a founding member of the Liga, opted to push for
the separation of Philippines from Spain through a
  One a fateful evening of July 7, 1892, Bonifacio, together with Jose
Dizon, Teodoro Plata, Valentin Diaz and Ladislao Diwa, launched the
revolutionary group known as the Katipunan in the house of Deodato
Arellano at 72 Azcarraga Street (now Claro M. Recto). Its original roster of
membership included radical members of the already defunct La Liga
Filipina. Many of them are intellectuals of the petty bourgeoisie like
Bonifacio. Some came from the traditionally-landed local elite like Dr. Pio
Valenzuela. The Katipunan initially counted only about 30 members and it
remained dormant for a while. By June of 1896, the Katipunan
membership had reached 30,000. The entry of Emilio Jacinto, the
acknowledged “brains of the Katipunan,” jumpstarted its revolutionary
A brilliant and young law student from San Juan de
Letran, he complemented Bonifacio's organizational
leadership. Jacinto provided strategic plans and was in charge
of the dissemination of Katipunan's organ, Kalayaan. This
attracted more membership for the group. Jacinto, known to
be an ardent admirer of Rizal, is said to be next to Rizal with
a “Rizaline soul.” He is best known for his longest essay and
work entitled, Liwanag at Dilim— “Light and Darkness.” He
also provided moral prescriptions intended to serve as a
cohesive bond among Filipinos in their creation of a national
These prescriptions were formulated in his Kartilla which all the
Katipuneros swore to uphold as their moral code of conduct (Majul,
1960). Going to Cuba When Ferdinand Blumentritt informed Rizal of the
Cuban revolution, the raging yellow fever epidemic, as well as the
shortage of physicians to minister the needs of Spanish troops and the
Cubans, he immediately wrote Governor General Ramon Blanco on
December 17, 1895 to signify his intention to volunteer as a military
doctor in the war-torn country. On July 1, 1896, seven months later,
Blanco approved Rizal’s request. He was exultant for he can travel again
to Europe, then to Cuba. From this, he wrote the heartwarming poem "El
Canto del Viajero" (The Song of the Traveler). 
The nostalgic departure of Rizal on the midnight of July 31, 1896
boarded the steamer España bound for Manila. He was accompanied
by Josephine, Narcisa and Angelica (Narcisa's daughter). His three
nephews and six pupils accompanied him to Manila. While on board
the ship, looking at the dusk that covered the picturesque Dapitan, he
wrote the following in his diary: I have always loved my poor country
and I am sure that I shall love her until death, if by chance men were
unjust to me; and I shall enjoy the happy life, contented in the thought
that all I have suffered, my past, my present and my future, my life, my
love, my pleasure, I have sacrificed all of these for love of her. Happen
what may, I shall die with her and desiring the dawn of her
The España arrived in Manila on August 6, 1899. However, the ship
Isla de Luzon that was supposed to take him to Spain had already left
earlier. He had to wait for the next ship Isla de Panay that was to sail for
Spain on September 3, 1896. Blanco sent a lieutenant of constabulary to
meet him in a tugboat with orders not to land. He was told that he was
detained but not imprisoned aboard ship to avoid embarrassment with
friends and enemies. While the ship was anchored at the Manila Bay, the
Katipuneros hatched a plan to rescue Rizal. In executing the plot, Emilio
Jacinto, Guillermo Masangkay and other Kati-puneros disguised
themselves as sailors. Using the boat named Caridad, the group was able
to go near the ship, confronted Rizal and informed him of their
intention. Rizal declined.
He refused the idea of him getting rescued. He stated that he was
aware of what he was doing. He then told the group to leave the ship.
Rizal was later transferred to the steamer Castilla while waiting for
the ship Isla de Panay that would take him to Barcelona. The Arrest
The discovery of Katipunan was a result of Teodoro Patiño’s
disclosure of the or-ganization's secrets to Fr. Mariano Gil on August
19, 1896. The Spanish authorities made mass arrests of Katipuneros
and their sympathizers in Manila. It prompted Bonifacio to summon
all leaders of the Katipunan. On August 23, 1896, the historic “Cry
of Pugadlawin” took place. Bonifacio asked the Katipuneros of their
readiness to fight the Spaniards for whatever cost.
After cutting the telephone lines in the capital, Bonifacio and the
Katipuneros attacked Manila but was later forced to retreat to Balara (now
Quezon City). The province of Cavite was fearlessly attacked and captured by
Emilio Aguinaldo and Artemio Ricarte, while Maximo Viola and his men
attacked government installations in the province of Bulacan. Although he was
held incommunicado inside the steamer Castilla, Rizal learned about the
outbreak of the revolution including its skirmishes around Manila through the
newspapers. Governor General Blanco, in turn issued a decree declaring a
state of war in the provinces of Batangas, Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, Manila,
Nueva Ecija, Pampanga and Tarlac which are all placed under martial law.
Rizal was upset because he heard that he was being blamed for the disturbance
in Manila.
On September 3, 1896, Rizal boarded Isla de Panay and sailed to
Singapore. Some of his companions like Manuel Camus persuaded
Rizal to stay in Singapore to avoid possible arrest in Spain due to
the outbreak of the revolution. Rizal, however, humbly refused the
offer and told them of the safe conduct pass given by Governor
General Blanco. On September 27, 1896, the Isla de Panay resumed
its voyage to the Mediterranean Sea passing through Port Said via
Colombo, Aden, and Suez Canal.