Manila and the Western Fruits of Japan

Portuguese Jesuit, Diogo de Mesquita, is widely credited for planting the first western trees in Japan. In his letters to Padre Juan de Ribera he requested the following trees: fig, pear, peach, quince (main ingredient of the Tagalog spread called membrillo) and olive trees. Padre Ribera (d. 1622, Manila), the Rector of the Jesuit College […]

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The Rizal Manifesto

Having visited Rizal’s reconstructed house in Calambâ recently (biking all the way there from Muntinglupà!), I became interested again in the circumstances that led to his execution. I reread “The Trial of Rizal” (a book almost forgotten today) and saw some interesting facts that are often glossed over by our history teachers. For example, not […]

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