Numbers | Inquirer Lifestyle

The Comedy of the Well-Mannered

“Well-mannered is better than educated,” Shaira said in defense of Bongbong Marcos, the presidential candidate she supported for the recently-concluded elections. It was…


1861: Year that Jose Rizal was born to Francisco Mercado and Teodora Alonso, on June 19 in Calamba, Laguna.

10: Number of Jose Rizal’s siblings: Saturnina, Paciano, Narcisa, Olympia, Lucia, Maria, Concepcion, Josefa, Trinidad and Soledad.

3: Age of Rizal when he learned the alphabet.  Taught by his mother, he learned to read and write at 5, and started writing poems at 8

1877: Year that Rizal obtained the degree of Bachelor of Arts, with the rank sobresaliente or excellent in all his subjects.

1882: Year that Rizal first left for Europe,  a few weeks before turning 21. He visited Spain, France and Germany, where he met the painter Juan Luna and Austrian professor Ferdinand Blumentritt, among others

23: Age of Rizal when he was conferred the degree of Licentiate in Medicine.  At the age of 24, he finished his course in Philosophy and Letters.

22: Number of languages that Rizal reportedly spoke, including Tagalog, Spanish, French, German, Italian and Japanese.

9+: Number of women romantically linked to  Rizal:  Segunda Katigbak, Leonor Valenzuela, Leonor Rivera, Consuelo Ortiga, O-Sei San, Gertrude Beckette, Nelly Boustead, Suzanne Jacoby and Josephine Bracken.

10: Number of articles that Rizal wrote for the paper La Solidaridad, including “The Philippines a Century Hence,” one of his best.

1887: Year that Rizal’s first novel, “Noli Me Tangere” was published in Berlin.  His third novel, “El Filibusterismo,” was printed in Ghent, Belgium in 1891.

4: Number of years that Rizal was exiled in Dapitan after being imprisoned in Fort Santiago  in 1892 on charges of possession of anti-friar pamphlets.

35: Age of Rizal when he was executed on charges of rebellion, sedition and of forming an illegal association.  Before his death, he wrote in prison the poem “Ultimo Adios,” said to be his most passionate poem that  expressed his deep love for the country.

Compiled by Schatzi Quodala, Inquirer Research

Sources: Jose Rizal, Filipino Doctor and Patriot,