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 Specialize in Ophthalmology
 Rizal chose this branch of medicine because he wanted to cure his mother’s eye
 He served as assistant to the famous oculist of Europe. Oculist – an
 He travels and observed European life, customs, government and laws in Paris,
Heidelberg, Leipzig and Berlin.
 He met befriended several top German scientist.
1. Dr. Feodor Sagon
2. Dr. Adolph B. Meyer
3. Dr. Hans Meyer
4. Dr. Rudolf Virchow
 His merits as a scientist were recognized by the eminent scientist of Europe.

 After acquiring enough experience as an ophthalmologist in Dr. Louis de
Weckert’s Clinic. Rizal reluctantly left Gay Paris on February 1, 1886 for
 He visited Strasbourg (capital of Alsace Lorraine) and other German border
 February 3, 1886, Rizal arrived in Heidelberg a historic city in Germany (for its
old university and romantic surroundings).
 February 3, 1886, Rizal arrived in Heidelberg a historic city in Germany (for its
old university and romantic surroundings). For a short time he lived in boarding
house with German law students. These students found out that Rizal was a good
player so that they made him a member of the Chess Player’s Club.
 He became popular among the German students because he joined them in chess
games, beer-drinking, and watched their friendly sabel duels.
 Few days after Rizal transferred to a boarding house near the University of
 He worked at the University Eye Hospital under the direction of Dr. Otto Becker
– German ophthalmologist.
 Rizal also attended the lecture of Doctor Becker and Prof. Wilhelm Kuehne at the
 During weekends, Rizal visited the scenic spots around the Heidelberg,
Heidelberg castle, the romantic Neckar River, the theater and old churches.
 He noticed that the German Catholics and Protestants practiced ecumenism. For
they lived together in harmony and cordiality. ECUMENISM – aim of
promoting unity among the world’s Christian churches.
 One of the town churches was used one half by Catholics and other half by the


 He was fascinated by the blooming flowers along the cool banks of Neckar River.
 “Forget me not” or the light blue flower was Rizal’s favorite.
 The beautiful spring flower reminded him of the blooming flowers at the garden
of his home in Calamba.
 Because of his homesick, Rizal wrote a fine poem on April 22, 1886 entitled “A
Las Flores de Heidelberg” (To the flowers of Heidelberg).


 After writing the poem, Rizal spent his 3 months summer vacation at
Wilhemsfeld- a mountainous village near Heidelberg.
 He stayed at Protestant Pastor Dr. Karl Ullmer, who became a good friend and
 His pleasant personality and talents in languages and sketching endeared him to
the pastor’s wife, who was a good cook, and two children, Etta and Fritz.
 He felt the pangs of sadness when ended his sojourn on June 25, 1886.
 The following day he wrote to Pastor Ullmer expressing his gratitude.
 Later, on May 29, 1887 Rizal wrote from Munich to Fritz, son of Pastor Ullmer.


 Rizal wrote his letter to Professor Ferdinand Blumentritt – Director of the Ateneo
of Leitmeritz, Austria.
 He had heard that Blumentritt (an Austrian Ethnologist) in his interest in
Philippine Language. Ethnology – the study of the characteristics of
various peoples and the differences and relationship between them.
 With the letter, Rizal sent the book entitled “Aritmetica” (Arithmetic) and was
published in two languages – Spanish and Tagalog by the University of Santo
Tomas Press in 1868. Author of the book was Rufino Baltazar Hernandez, a
native of Santa Cruz, Laguna.
 It marked the beginning of their long and frequent correspondence, also of their
friendship that last all their lives. Blumentritt became the best friend of Rizal.
 Rizal was fortunate to be sojourning in Heidelberg. The famous University of
Heidelberg held its 5th Centenary celebration on August 6, 1886.
 His diary dated August 6, 1886 describes the celebration of the 5th centenary of
the University of Heidelberg.
 Three days before of his departure and he was sad because he had come to love
the beautiful city and it’s hospitable people.
 August 9. 1886, 3 day after the celebration of 5th centenary of the University of
Heidelberg left the city of Heidelberg.
 August 14, 1886 when Rizal arrived in Leipzig. He attended some lectures at the
University of Leipzig on history and psychology.
 He befriended Professor Friendrich Ratzel (a famous German historian) and Dr.
Hans Meyer (a German anthropologist). Anthropology is the study of
various aspects of humans within past and present societies.
 In Leipzig, Rizal translated Schiller’s William Tell from German into Tagalog. So
that the Filipino might know the story of Champion of Swiss Independence.
 He also translated into Tagalog of Hans Christian Andersen’s Fairy Tales for his
nephews and nieces.
 Rizal found out that the cost of living in Leipzig was cheapest in Europe, so that
he stayed there for two and half months.
 He corrected the some chapters of his second novel and performed his daily
physical exercises at the city gymnasium.
 Because of his knowledge if German, Spanish and other European language he
worked as Proof-reader in Publisher’s Firm to earn some money.
 On October 29, he left Leipzig for Dresden. Where he met Dr. Adolph B. Meyer –
Director of the Anthropological and Ethnological Museum.
 He stayed in Dresden in 2 days.
 He heard Mass in Catholic Church.
 November 1, Rizal left Dresden by a train reaching berlin in the evening.


 Rizal was enchanted by Berlin, because of its scientific atmosphere and the
absence of race prejudice. In this city, he came in contact with great scientists.
 For the first he met Dr. Feodor Jagor – celebrated German scientist-traveler, and
 The author of TRAVELS IN THE PHILIPPINES, a book which Rizal read and
admired during his student days in Manila.
 Dr. Jagor visited the Philippines in 1859-1860, before Rizal was born.
 In this book published in Berlin in 1873, he foretold the downfall of Spanish rule
in the Philippines and the coming of America to Philippines Shores.
 Rizal has a letter of introduction by Blumenritt for him.
 Dr. Jagor, introduced Rizal to Dr. Rudolf Virchow – German Anthropologist,
Latter’s son of Dr. Hans Virchow – professor of Descriptive Anatomy.
 He also met Dr. W Joest – German geographer.
 He worked in the clinic of Dr. Karl Ernest Schweigger (1830-1905) – famous
German ophthalmologist.
 Rizal became a member of the following societies:
1. Anthropological Society
2. Ethnological Society
3. The Geographical Society in Berlin, upon the recommendation of Dr.
Jagor and Dr. Meyer.
 His membership in these societies proved that his scientific knowledge was
recognized by Europe’s scientist.
 He was the first Asian to be accorded such honors.
 Dr. Virchow recognized Rizal’s genius, so he invited him to give a lecture before
the Enthnographic Society of Berlin.
 In response to Dr. Virchow’s invitation, Rizal wrote a scholarly paper in German,
entitled “Tagalische Verkunst” (Tagalog Metrical Art) which he read
before the society in April 1887.


 Rizal was not a mere student or a curious tourist.
 He lived in this famous capital of unified Germany for 5 reasons:
1. To gain further knowledge if ophthalmology
2. To further his studies of sciences and languages
3. To observe the economic had political conditions of the german nation
4. To associate with famous german scientist and scholars
5. To publish his novel, Noli Me Tangere
 Rizal led a methodical and frugal life in berlin.
 He worked as an assistant in the clinic of Dr. Schweigger – eminent German
 At night, he attended lectures in the University of Berlin.
 At Rizal’s boarding house, he do daily exercise and practiced many language
(German, French & Italian).
 He took private lesson about French, so that he may able to write it as well
(Madame Lucie Cendole) – professor of the French language.
 Aside for academic studies, he performed daily exercise to develop his body.
 He spent his moments around countryside’s of berlin and made sketches of the
thing he saw.
 He also enjoying ride along Unter den Linden, the most popular boulevard in
Rizal on German Women
 One of his important written letters while he was in Germany was that address to
his sister Trinidad (March 11, 1886). In this letter he expressed his high regard
and admiration for German Womanhood.
 The German woman, said Rizal to his sister is serious, diligent, educated, and
 She is not gossipy, frivolous, and quarrelsome like the Spanish woman. She is not
beautiful dresser, though she could dress nicely like any other woman in the
 Rizal regretted that in the Philippines, the women are more interested in how
they dress than in how much they know.
 He praised however the feeling, manners, devotion and hospitality of the Filipino
women, especially those who in the province who are not sophisticated.
 If only they can cultivate their intellect by education and by taking more
interested in worldly affairs.
 Remarked Rizal, they can command respect of all men.
 Accordingly, Rizal advised her sister, Trinidad: “Now that you are still young you
should strive read, read, and learn. You must not allow yourself to be conquered
by indolence because it cost so little to cast it off.”
German Customs
 Aside from the German women, Rizal admired the German customs which
he observed well.
 It must be noted that he was a keen observer of the customs of the peoples
in all the countries he visited.
 The Christmas custom of the Germans delighted him most.
 Of this yuletide custom, he wrote: “On Christmas eve, the people take from
the bushes a pine tree.
 Another interesting German custom observed by Rizal is self-introduction
to strangers in a social gathering.
 In Germany, when a man attends a social function and finds that there is
nobody to introduce him to the other guests.
 He bows his head to the guest, introduces himself and shakes the hands of
everyone in the room.
 According to the German etiquette, it is bad manners for a guest to remain
Rizal’s Darkest Winter
 Rizal spent winters in many temperate countries.
 The winter of 1886 in Berlin was his darkest winter
 During this bleak winter, he lived in poverty because no money arrived
from Calamba and he was flat broke.
 The diamond ring which her sister, Saturnina, gave him was in the
 He could not pay the landlord. He had to scrimp, eat once a day that
consisted of bread and water or some cheap vegetable soup.
 He washed the clothes itself because he couldn’t afford to pay the laundry.
 Out in far-away Calamba, Paciano tried desperately to raise money.
 He knew his younger brother was in a dire financial situation in Berlin. But
the crops had failed due to the ravages of the locust.
 The sugar market collapsed. Time was of the essence, but poor Paciano was
delayed in raising the necessary funds.
 Meanwhile, Rizal starved in Berlin and shivered with wintry cold. His
health broke down due to lack of proper nourishment.
 He began to cough, and he feared that he was going to be sick with
 Never had he suffered such physical blows of penury, so that his soul cried
out in despair.