Sunday, December 18, 2011


1856 - Future Filipino orator, patriot, and propagandist Graciano Lopez y Jaena is born in Jaro, Iloilo during the Spanish colonial times; born to poor parents Maria Jacob Jaena and Placido Lopez, Graciano would be schooled in the Colegio Provincial, an institution owned by a Filipino priest, and would later study Theology in Jaro but as he would aspire instead to be a medical doctor, sailed to Manila upon pledge of financial support from a diplomat relative; in lieu of the preparatory course to enter the University of Santo Tomas' School of Medicine, he served as an apprentice at the San Juan de Dios Hospital; owing to financial difficulties, he returned to Iloilo with only two years of apprenticeship during a period that will make him realize the miserable socioeconomic conditions of the natives; he will soon become an advocate of  equality and freedom, leading him on crusades that would enrage the colonial authorities; he will be most famous for his "Fray Butod" or Big Bellied Friar satire that exposed the Spanish friar's laziness, greed, cruelty, and lust; he would later flee to Spain to pursue Medicine and also continue his reform crusades, specifically his advocacy for liberal measures in the colony, the Philippines; in Spain, he would form the propaganda organ La Solidaridad together with Jose Rizal and Marcelo H. del Pilar in what would be known as the Propaganda triumvirate that would lead Filipino propagandists working for reforms in the "motherland."

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