Nearly every municipality and city in the Philippines houses a monument of the country’s national hero, Dr. Jose Rizal. Although the government does not strictly mandate the construction of these monuments, these have unconsciously become an essential part of life in a Filipino community, serving as reminders of Rizal’s great love for his country and its people. However, it is worth noting that the Philippines is not the only country that has chosen to honor Rizal’s memory in this manner. Monuments built in his name can be found all over the world, often in places where the renowned writer had once traveled to or where large Filipino communities are now found.
Next time you find yourself longing for home while you are abroad, feel free to make a quick stop at one of these Rizal monuments:
On the occasion of Rizal’s 150th birthday in 2011, a statue was built at the Piazzale de Manila through the combined efforts of the Philippine Embassy to the Holy See and Josephine Bantug, a descendant of Rizal’s sister Narcisa. Rizal arrived in Rome on June 27, 1887, and later toured different sites like Milan, Florence, and the Vatican City over the course of his 3-day stay in Italy. In his writings, the national hero expressed his appreciation of the Italian capital city saying: “I will give up visiting the other cities. If I had one more year, I would spend it all here… Ancient Rome allures me exceedingly.”
Josè Rizal memorial in Rome Italy. pic.twitter.com/MklfD2Vkyg
— Memorias de las Viejas Filipinas (@ViejasFilipinas) January 14, 2019