Today in Philippine History, March 1, 1888, some native Filipinos and mestizos presented a petition demanding explusion of the friars

Monday January 07, 2013 ()

On March 1, 1888, some native Filipinos and mestizos marched in procession to the official residence of Jose Centeno and presented a petition demanding the immediate expulsion of the friars of the religious orders, and of the Archbishop, whom they declared unworthy to occupy the Primacy of the Islands.

Centeno, a mining engineer, was acting civil governor of Manila, and an anti-clerical, was said to have emboldened the demonstration.

Filipino soldiers  in 1899
(Filipino soldiers in 1899)

The petition addessed to the Governor-General, further demanded the secularisation of the benefices and the confiscation of the estates of the Augustinians and the Dominicans. The demand, said to have been written by Doroteo Cortes, a mestizo lawyer, also accused the friars of compassing the death of Father Burgos, by subornation of justice.

There were 810 signatures to the petition, but when the signatories were summoned and examined, most of them declared they did not know what they had signed, and denied that they wished the friars to be expelled.

The result of this appeal was that the principal persons who took part in it were banished, or sent to reside at undesirable places within the Archipelago.

Reference:
The Inhabitants of the Philippines, Frederic Henry Read Sawyer, Page 55-56, S. Low, Marston and company, London, 1900


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