Today in Philippine History. June 19, 1861, Dr. Jose Rizal, a multi-talented illustrado, hero and martyr was born in Calamba, Laguna. As we commemorate his birth, let us look at some of the facts about his birth.
The idea of writing a novel came out when Rizal realized that Filipinos were almost an unknown nation in Europe. In Madrid they mistaken to be Chinese. “Street urchins ran after them shouting ‘Chink! Chink!’ And indeed, half in self-mockery, half in defiance, the Filipinos in Madrid referred to one another as ‘slit-eyed Chinese’” (Leon Ma. Guerrero, The First Filipino).