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CHAPTER 9: Rizal s Grand Tour of Europe with Viola (1887)

After the publication of the Noli, Rizal planned to visit important places in Europe. Maximo Viola agreed to be his traveling companion. Rizal had received Paciano s remittance of P 1,000 which was forwarded by Juan Luna from Paris. He immediately paid Viola the sum of P300 which the latter kindly loaned so that the Noli could be printed. They first visited Potsdam, a city near Berlin.

Figure 1: Maximo Viola

Figure 3: Dr. Adolf Meyer, director of the Dresden Museum

Figure 2: Rizal's trail in Germany

Figure 4: German scientisttraveler, author of "Travels in the Philippines"

THE TOUR BEGINS At dawn of May 11, 1887, Rizal and Viola left Berlin by train. Their destination was Dresden, one of the best cities in Germany. DRESDEN Their visit coincided with the regional floral exposition. He studied the numerous plant varities of extraordinary beauty and size . They also visited Dr. Adolph B. Meyer. In the Museum of Art, which they also visited, Rizal was deeply impressed by a painting of Prometheus Bound . They met Dr. Jagor while strolling at the scene of the Floral Exposition. Teschen (now Decin, Czechoslovakia) was their next stopover after leaving Dresden. Rizal and Viola sent a wire to Blumentritt, as per suggestion of Dr. Jagor.

FIRST MEETING WITH BLUMENTRITT At 1:30 p.m. of May 13, 1887, the train, with Rizal and Viola on board, arrived at the railroad station of Leitmeritz, Bohemia. Professor Blumentritt, who had received the wire, was at the station carrying a pencil sketch of Rizal which the letter had previously sent him, so that he could identify his Filipino friend. Professor Blumentritt, the genial host, helped Rizal and Viola get a room at Hotel Krebs, after which he brought them to his home and introduced them to his wife and family.
Figure 5: Professor Ferdinand Blumentritt

BEAUTIFUL MEMORIES OF LEITMERITZ Rizal enjoyed the warm hospitality of the Blumentritt family. The professor s wife Rosa was a good cook. His children were Dolores (called Dora or Dorita by Rizal), Conrad and Fritz Blumentritt proved to be a great tourist guide as well as a hospitable host. He showed the scenic and historical spots of Leitmeritz to his visitors. One afternoon he invited them to a beer garden where the best beer of Bohemia was served. At a near table there was a lively discussion among the drinkers about advisability of having the railroad pass through a neighboring town. One of the men in the group was the burgomaster (town mayor) of that town; Blumentritt knew the burgomaster, so that he approached the party and delightfully introduced his two Filipino friends. Rizal talked in fluent German. The Figure 6: Blumentritt's home burgomaster asked Rizal how long it took him to learn German. And Rizal replied: Eleven months, sir . The burgomaster was further amazed, and in great admiration, he lauded the privileged talent of Rizal. Blumentritt embraced Rizal, telling him that few Germans could speak well their own language as Rizal could. On another afternoon Rizal and Viola were invited to a meeting of the Tourists Club of Leitmeritz, of which Blumentritt was the secretary. Rizal, desiring to commemorate his happy hours at the Blumentritt home, painted a portrait of the kind professor and gave it to him. Blumentritt was pleased with the gift. It was during his visit to Leitmeritz when
Figure 7: The former Hotel Kreb.

Rizal met another renowned scientist of Europe, Dr. Carlos Czepelak. Blumentritt brought him to Czepelak s home. Blumentritt also introduced Rizal to Professor Robert Klutschak, an eminent naturalist. On their last night in Leitmeritz, Rizal and Viola, to reciprocate Blumentritt s hospitality, tendered a banquet - a farewell dinner in his honor at their hotel. On May 16, at 9:45 A.M., Rizal and Viola left Leitmeritz by train. Blumentritt, his wife and children Figure 8: Leitmeritz railroad station at present were at the railroad station to see them off, and they all shed tears in parting as the train slowly departed. Rizal carried unto his grave the beautiful memories of his visit to Leitmeritz. In a letter to Blumentritt, written in Vienna on May 24, 1887, Rizal expressed his and Viola s concern for the illness of Dora, the professor s little daughter. PRAGUE After Leitmeritz, Rizal and Viola visited the historic city of Prague. They carried letters of recommendation from Blumentritt to Dr. Willkomm, professor of natural history in the University of Prague. The good professor and his charming wife and daughters welcomed them and showed them the city s historic spots.
Figure 9: National Museum of Prague or the Museum of Natural History

Rizal and Viola visited the tomb of Copernicus, the famous astronomer; the museum of the natural history; the bacteriological laboratories; the famous cave where San Juan Nepumoceno, the Catholic saint, was imprisoned; and the bridge from which this saint was hurled into the river. After saying good-bye to Professor Willkomm and his family the two tourists went to Brunn. According to Viola, nothing of importance happened in this city . VIENNA On May 20, Rizal and Viola arrived in the beautiful city of Vienna, capital of Austria-Hungary. Famous in song and story, this city fascinated Rizal because of its beautiful buildings, was truly the Queen of Danube .

Rizal and Viola, armed with the letter of recommendation from Blumentritt, met Norfenfals, one of the greatest novelist in Europe during that time. This great Austrian novelist was favorably impressed by Rizal, and years later he spoke highly of Rizal, whose genius he so much admired . In Vienna, Rizal received his lost diamond stickpin. It was found by a maid in Hotel Krebs and was given to Blumentritt, who, in turn, forwarded it to Rizal in Vienna.
Figure 10: Rizal's trail in Austria

Rizal and Viola stayed at Hotel Metropole. They visited the city s interesting places. They met two good friends of Blumentritt Masner and Nordmann, Austrian scholars.
Figure 11: Hotel Metropole, 1893


On May 24, Rizal and Viola left Vienna on a river boat to see the beautiful sights of Danube River. As they traveled along the famous river, Rizal observed keenly the river sights-the barges loaded with products, the flower and plants growing along the river banks, the boats with families living on them, and the quaint villages on the riversides. He particularly noticed that the passengers on the river boat were using paper napkins during the meals, which was a novelty to him. His fellow passenger, Viola commented that the paper napkin were more hygienic and economical than cloth napkins . FROM LINTZ TO RHEINFALL
Figure 12: Historic town of Linz beside Danube River

The river voyage ended in Linz. They traveled overland to Salzburg, and from there to Munich where they sojourned for a short time to savior the famous Munich beer, reputed to be the best in Germany. From Munich, they went to Nuremberg, one of the oldest cities of Germany. Among the sights which they saw in this city were the horrible torture machines used by the Inquisition. He and Viola were impressed by the manufacture of dolls which was the biggest industry of the city.

After Munich, they visited Ulm. The cathedral of this city was the largest and tallest in all Germany . Viola related that he and Rizal climbed its many hundred steps. From Ulm, they went to Struttgart, Baden, and Rheinfall (Cascade of the Rhine). At Rheinfall, they saw the waterfall, the most beautiful waterfall of Europe .

Figure 14: The old view of Cascades of the Rhine. Figure 13: Ulm Cathedral, world s tallest church spire at height of 161 m. with its 768 steps.

CROSSING THE FRONTIER TO SWITZERLAND From the Rheinfall, they crossed the frontier to Schaffhausen, Switzerland. They stayed in this city from June 2 to 3, 1887. They continued their tour to Basel (Bale), Bern, and Lausanne.

Figure 15: Rizal's trail in Switzerland

GENEVA After sightseeing in Lausanne, Rizal and Viola left on a little boat, crossing the foggy Leman Lake to Geneva. This Swiss city is one of the most beautiful cities in Europe, visited by world tourists every year. The people of Geneva were linguists, speaking French, German, and Italian. Rizal conversed with them in these three languages.
Figure 16: Hotel Mller, located at Bahnhofstrasse 28, where Dr. Rizal took lodging during his visit to Schaffhausen on June 2-3, 1887.

On June 19, 1887, Rizal treated Viola to a blow-out. It was his 26 birthday. According to a Filipino custom, he celebrated his birthday with a sumptuous meal. Rizal and Viola spent fifteen delightful days in Geneva. On June 23, they parted ways Viola returned to Barcelona

while Rizal continued the tour to Italy.

Figure 17: 1887 Madrid Exposition, the Igorots

Figure 18: Lake Geneva which also called Lac Leman in French, is the largest of the lakes near Alps

EXHIBITION OF IGOROTS IN 1887 MADRID RIZAL RESENTS EXPOSITION While Rizal, accompanied by Dr. Viola, was happily touring Europe, and Exposition of the Philippines was held in Madrid, Spain. Upon reaching Geneva (Switzerland), he received sad news from his friends in Madrid of the deplorable conditions of the primitive Igorots who were exhibited in this exposition, some of whom died, and whose scanty clothing (G-strings) and crude weapons were objects of mockery and laughter by the Spanish people and press. Being champion of human dignity, Rizal was outraged by this degradation of his fellow countrymen, the Igorots of Northern Luzon. RIZAL IN ITALY From Geneva, Rizal went to Italy. He visited Turin, Milan, Venice, and Florence. On June 27, 1887, he reached Rome, the Eternal City and also called the City of the Caesars . On June 29th, the Feast Day of St. Peter and St. Paul, Rizal visited for the first time the Vatican, the City of Popes and the capital of Christendom Every night, after sightseeing the whole day, Rizal returned to his hotel, very tired. I am tired as a dog, he wrote to Blumentritt, but I will sleep as a god .
Figure 19: Vatican Museum at present time

After a week of wonderful sojourn in Rome, he prepared to return to the Philippines. He had already written to his father that he was coming home. Reference: Jose Rizal: Life, Works and Writings of a Writer, Scientist and National Hero by G.F. Zaide and S.M. Zaide http://www.mina-gerd-kraemer.homepage.t-online.de/rht/homepage_rht.html


Chapter 9


Submitted by: Acidre, Hazel Bisonia, Jean Erika

Submitted to: Prof. J. Sanchez