Philippine Heroes and Heroines

Agoncillo, Marcela (1860-1946)

• "Maker of the Philippine Flag"

• She was one the three women who made (hand-woven) the first, original Philippine flag.


Aguinaldo, Emilio (1869-1964)

• "First President of the Philippines"

• He was the revolutionary who proclaimed the independence of the Philippines from Spain on June 12, 1898 in Kawit, Cavite.


Arellano, Deodato (1844-1896)

• "Founding Member of the Katipunan"

• He was the first president of the Katipunan, a revolutionary society whose goal was to establish a free and democratic Philippines during the Spanish colonial era.


Aquino, Melchora (1812-1919)

• "Mother of the Katipunan"

• She was affectionately called "Tandang Sora" ('Old Sora"). This old woman gave food, shelter and other assistance to the Filipino revolutionaries who were fighting to overthrow the Spanish colonial government in the Philippines during the mid-1890.


Bonifacio, Andres (1863-1897)

• "Father of the Philippine revolution of 1896"

• He was the founder of the revolutionary society called the Katipunan that led the uprising against the Spanish colonial administration in the Philippines in 1896.


Dagohoy, Francisco (Dates Unknown)

• "Leader of the Longest Filipino Revolt during the Spanish Colonial Period"

• He was the native Filipino who started the rebellion against Spanish rule in Bohol. It was the longest rebellion, which began in 1744 and lasted until 1829.


del Pilar, Gregorio (1875-1899)

• "Hero of Tirad Pass"

• One of the youngest generals in the Philippine revolutionary forces, Gregorio del Pilar is best remembered for his heroism at Tirad Pass where he and his 60 fellowmen fought the advancing American forces who were in hot pursuit of Emilio Aguinaldo. General del Pilar and his men were killed in what is known in Philippine history as the "Battle of Tirad Pass."


del Pilar, Marcelo H. (1850-1896)

• "Political Analyst of the Propaganda Movement"

• He was the founder of the Diarong Tagalog, a nationalistic newspaper which exposed the evils committed by the Spanish government in the Philippines. He was one reformist who used ordinary places where ordinary Filipinos gathered as venues for expressing his nationalistic sentiments and this made him popular with the people. When he went to Spain in 1888, he became the "political analyst" of the Filipino colony in that country.


Jacinto, Emilio (1875-1899)

• "Brains of the Katipunan"

• He was only 18 years old when he joined the Katipunan in 1893, becoming the youngest member of the revolutionary society. He wrote the "Kartilla" or the primer of the Katipunan which became the ideals or teachings of the society to which the members adhered strictly.


Jaena, Graciano Lopez (1856-1896)

• "Greatest Orator of the Propaganda Movement"

• He was one of the prominent members of the reformist movement. He established the "La Solidaridad," which was the official newspaper of the Filipino reformists based in Spain.


Katipunero (Revolutionaries)

• "Sons of the People"

• They were the male members of the revolutionary society called Katipunan that led the revolt against the Spanish colonial administration in the Philippines in 1896. Although they lacked the war machinery to win a revolution, they were able to sustain the armed struggle because they had the courage and determination and because they held the conviction that a free Philippines was worth fighting for. Philippine independence was won from Spain in 1898 but it was lost again a few years later to American imperialist forces.


Lapu-Lapu (1491-1542)

• "First National Hero of the Philippines"

• He was the Muslim chieftain of Mactan who killed Ferdinand Magellan in the "Battle of Mactan." Magellan was the Portuguese explorer who led a Spanish government-backed expedition to the East Indies which found its way to the Philippines in 1521. Magellan's expedition was the first known circumnavigation of the world.


Mabini, Apolinario (1864-1903)

• "The Sublime Paralytic"

• A highly intelligent man who suffered from leg paralysis, Mabini was the most trusted adviser of Emilio Aguinaldo


Rizal, Jose (1861-1896)

• "Pride of the Malay Race"

• A sportsman, scientist, linguist and man of letters, Jose Rizal was the leading figure of the "Propaganda Movement" which espoused Philippine nationalism and advocated reforms during the second half of the 19th century when the Philippines was under Spanish colonial rule.

• Today, Rizal is considered as the national hero of the Philippines. Monuments honoring this great Filipino have been erected not only in the Philippines but also in China, Spain and the United States.


Women of the Katipunan

• They were the wives and daughters of the katipunero (revolutionaries). Although they were few in numbers, they were trusted members of the Katipunan. Like their male counterparts, they recruited new members but they were not part of the "fighting force" of the revolutionary society. They served as record-keepers and they served as a front whenever the katipunero held a secret meeting in a particular house. In order not to arouse the suspicion of the Spanish civil guard, the women sang and danced in the sala in full view of the passerby while the clandestine meeting was held. Among the well-known women in the Katipunan were Josefa and Trinidad Rizal, Gregoria de Jesus, Benita Rodriguez and Simeona de Remigio.

Andres Bonifacio, Emilio Jacinto and Graciano Lopez Jaena

Marcelo H. del Pilar, Melchora Aquino and Lapu-Lapu