165. Blumentritt, Leitmeritz, 26 April 1891

  On his unhappy love - "If she can give up Rizal, she is not of the stature of Rizal's heart" - Affectionate letter of Paciano - Interesting book which furnishes weapons to the opponents of Frailocracia(1) - Against Rizal's return to the Philippines - "The native land needs your intelligence and your freedom - Better times are approaching for the Philippines - The struggles of La Solidaridad are not useless - Study of the scientific basis of the Malayan language - The gold pen has not arrived.

  26 April 1891


Dr. José Rizal
Brussels, 38 Rue Phil. de Champagne

My Brother,

For a long time I waited for your letter which at last arrived today. I'm sincerely sorry that you have lost your fiancée but if she could renounce Rizal, she is not of the stature of his spirit. She is like a child who throws away a diamond to pick up a pebble. In other words, she is not the wife for Rizal. La donna e mobile,(2) as the Italians sing. I leave this subject because I don't want to touch further an open wound.

I'm very glad that your dear family is well. I received from Don Paciano such an affectionate letter that I have put it on the night table beside my bed so that I can read it every night. I'm going to answer it; should I send you the letter? How long will you stay in Brussels? I'll wait until you write me and then I'll send you the letter for Paciano and a very interesting book for you, which, though it does not deal with the Philippines, contains a great deal that furnishes weapons to the opponents of Frailocracia.

I'm by no means in favor of your going to the Philippines now. You expose yourself to great perils and your native country needs your intelligence and your freedom. I believe that better times for the Philippines are approaching. The struggles of La Solidaridad are not useless. I would not dare draw such optimistic opinions only from my head, but some Spaniards who, at the beginning of the campaign fled from me as from a heretic, have written me again, telling me that they have found out that I was right.

Don't go to the Philippines yet; it is better for you to go to Leyden and see Professor Kern and you study the scientific basis of the Malayan language. Then prepare for your people a dictionary like the one Littré has given the French, and even had you done nothing more than this (even if you had not written Noli me tángere), your name would be immortal, not only in your native country and among your people, but in the whole world. In reading the bilingual Tagalog-Spanish newspapers, I find many Spanish words in the Tagalog text for which neologisms or newly formed Tagalog words can be easily substituted.

Thirty years ago the Austrian Wends or Slovenes had no homogenous language, because theirs was full of German and Italian terms. So the Slavic scholar Professor M íklosich worked for two years and created for this people a rich and perfect written Ianguage, varying, adaptinq, and borrowing from other Slavic languages. especially from the Czech (Bohemian), Polish, Russian, and Serbian. So, an honorable work awaits you.

The gold pen has not yet arrived. They wrote me that it was coming on the same boat that brought Isabelo,s letter with the draft. This came on the 21st or 22nd of December, but the pen has not yet come.

Enough for now. Affectionate regards from all of us.

Your brother embraces you,


(1) That is, the rule of the friars.
(2) The lady is fickle.

[Rizal-Blumentritt Correspondence] [Culture and History]
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created: July 30, 1996
updated: March 10, 1998
APSIS Editor Johann Stockinger