My Travels with Doctor Rizal
by Maximo Viola
My Travels with Doctor Rizal
by Maximo Viola
About the month of June or July of the year 1886 Doctor Rizal arrived at Barcelona from Madrid en route to Paris. From the railroad station he went directly to my house on Vergara Street, number 1, floor 3, room 2, though we knew each other only by name. I was then leafing through one of my text books, reviewing for the final examination for the degree of Licentiate in Medicine and Surgery when I heard the sound of the bell ringing at the door of my house, followed by a voice asking for me from the landlady who went out to open the door. When she informed me that someone was looking for me, I came out to meet him, and when he introduced himself by giving his name, I joyously embraced him, conducting him immediately to my room.
After having talked a little about his projected trip to Germany, he asked me if he could stay at my house, because, not planning to stay more than a week in that city, he didn’t want to spend much for hotels and other luxuries that he didn’t need. Informed of his purpose, the landlady had no inconvenience to take him in, installing him immediately in my room, which could easily hold two beds.
It can be said that the life of the illustrious traveler in this city had nothing notable about it. Like great men, he visited his friends and fellow countrymen, monuments and institutions without pomp or ceremony. During the day I could not accompany him in his excursions as much as I wished for the reason that I was preparing for my final examinations as I have previously stated. At night I accompanied him sometimes to the Café Pelayo – a gathering- place of the Filipino colony – and sometimes to other amusement centers, including “houses of low-flying doves”  whose ways, luxury or poverty, and other customs in the refinement of vice were unknown to him at Madrid. Inasmuch as he was eager to know everything, because the day when, as a writer, he would have to combat such a vice in its diverse manifestations for being unnatural and anti-physiological, according to him, he would be informed of its cause, the better to correct it. It must be noted that in these excursions, rather of a character more inquisitional than voluptuous, he always hinted to me that he had never been in favor of blindly obeying the whims of nature when their call was not duly justified by a natural and spontaneous impulse.
One of the friends he visited at Barcelona was Mr. Eusebio Corominas, editor of the daily newspaper, La Publicidad, organ of Mr. Morayta  of Barcelona. This editor accompanied him several times in his excursions in the environs of the city, now amusing themselves, no visiting factories of woolens and other articles, such as glass, porcelain, and others.
As we lived in the same room, I noticed that he had the habit of going to bed early, lighting a candle on his night table, opening a book, and after six or ten minutes, he put out the light bidding me goodnight. As he followed this custom regularly every night, I took it that he said his prayers. When I asked him if it was a Trisagion [A hymn with the words, "Holy God, Holy Mighty, Holy Immortal, have mercy on us,. . ." – rly] or some other prayer that he recited, he replied that it was neither one nor the other, but a methodical study of the German language that consisted of committing to memory five radical words of German before sleeping. This practice multiplied by 365 days of the year would enable one at the end of that period to be a regular academician of the language.
Shortly before leaving Barcelona, he left at the editorial office of La Publicidad, a well-done crayon drawing of the bust of Mr. Morayata, copied one night in a moment of artistic inspiration from a photograph that he carried with him. He also left there the draft of an article on the Caroline Islands, a burning question at the time, with the instruction to pigeonhole it should its publication prove embarrassing to the paper. To this delicate gesture Mr. Coromínas replied that he, who was the author of that picture that differed only from the original by the phenomenon of speech, could also be the author of that article which was from that moment accepted for publication without any reservation.
Worth mentioning also was the clay bust of the one who had been my house companion, named Juan . . ., native of Valencia, former intern at the Hospital de Sta. Cruz, which Rizal made and presented to him as a remembrance, when both were living together in a boarding home in Barcelona, Rizal being on his way to Madrid.
The fame of Doctor Rizal, since a student as a great talent and possessor of an encyclopedic knowledge being well known, I wished to verify for myself if that store of knowledge that he possessed was due exclusively to his application to study or rather the result of his privileged memory. Hence, one day I interrupted him in his studies with the proposal that he and I study a subject never before seen by both and the work chosen was a textbook of a Mexican student of civil engineering who also lived in the same house. We decided to study a paragraph of sufficient length from it. Through this test I estimated that with regard to facility of memorization, he could not be classified as number one, but as to retentive memory he is undoubtedly above the number mentioned, for, six or seven months after that competition, when we were at Berlin and he was already my professor of German, it occurred to me to ask him if he still remembered what we competitively studied together in Barcelona and he instantly recited it so well as if he had just committed it to memory at that very moment. He added that he was not among those who could memorize with extraordinary facility, for when he was a student at the Ateneo, some of his classmates were ahead of them, including Mr. Marzano.
Before his departure abroad,  we decided among various members of the Filipino colony to offer him a modest dinner whose characteristic dish was pansit  prepared by a fellow countryman, Pedro Arcenas, with bijon and mique obtained from a Filipino family. Those who attended that fraternal dinner were Felix Rojas,  Pedro Arcenas, Cándido Reyes (former military man), Rafael Ampuero (R.I.P.), some Cubans, and the present writer. The speakers were brilliant, especially our guest of honor whose important speech I don’t know where it could be found now. The following day we bade him goodbye at the railroad station where he boarded a train for France. A few days later I received letters from him. These letters reiterating his suggestion made at Barcelona that I complete my studies by traveling with him through Europe. He also attentively wrote me from various places where he stayed for awhile. Sometimes he told me about his impressions of the cities he visited and sometimes about the study of eye disease under the tutoring of the French professor [Louis de] Wicker and the German [Otto] Becker whose pictures he sketched at the end of his letters to me.
From Heidelberg he had the kindness to send me an inspired poem (whose whereabouts I don’t now know) requested by me to be recited at a gathering of Filipinos at the house of some lady Catalan friends at Barcelona.
Having finished my medical studies, I resolved to travel, leaving Barcelona on 3 December 1886 and arriving at Paris the following day.  At the expressed request of Friend Rizal I went to see the painter Juan Luna to get from him a diamond solitaire ring, a jewel that, together with my own, was almost taken away from me by professional pickpockets while I was standing before a shop window on a Paris boulevard. After a brief sojourn at that brains of Europe, I continued my trip to Berlin after sending a telegram to my good friend Rizal who was waiting for me but who, on account of illness, could not meet me as he had wished at the railroad station upon my arrival at that capital city.
Despite the late hour of my arrival – midnight – I found him awake and suffering from a fever for which reason I bade him goodbye soon to go to the Central Hotel to lodge at his suggestion.  Early in the morning of the following day my sick friend ho could scarcely sleep the night before the night before was now knocking at the door of my room. I dressed quickly and we went together to his house at Leipziger or Jaegerstrasse, number 71, 3rd floor, to analyze his ailment that he had already outlined to me the previous night. After expounding his family’s antecedents, his individual mnemonics, and his rare physiology, he described the symptoms of his sickness which were afternoon fevers preceded by shivering, occasional coughing, and fatigue. Examining his lungs by percussion and auscultation I found nothing appreciable that confirmed his opinion that he had incipient pulmonary tuberculosis. All these symptoms were due to the vegetarian diet he had imposed upon himself on account of his financial difficulties. To this physiological poverty one must add his fondness for physical exercise and the extraordinary exertion he imprudently made at a gymnasium where he had promised to equal the strongest gymnast there in lifting weights. (I don’t know exactly how many pounds) after only a week’s practice and with a diet to which he was not yet accustomed. After coming out successfully from that engagement, because to him where there is a will there is a way, his health suffered in the manner already described in spite of his well-developed and carefully cultivated muscles. Contributing no little to his poor health was his excessive love for study stimulated by that group of scholars among whom he moved, who further encouraged his natural predisposition to being a polyglot. In order to be sure of the diagnosis I advised him to consult some Berlin specialist, who, after examination of his sputum and other secretions, concluded by confirming the absence of the suspected sickness and advising him to continue the regimen previously adopted by the patient himself, that is Fowler’s arsenical liquor, a good diet, moderate exercise, etc.
On account of my arrival at Berlin, his attention was divided. He busied himself trying to get me a modest room on Kanonierstrasse, number 39, floor 3. He was more preoccupied about the health of the native country than about his own. After being installed in that place we began the study of German, he quite willingly becoming my teacher of that difficult language. With the exception of the luncheons that we took together at the restaurant, according to Berlin custom, each one paying for his own, I took supper with him at his house at his expense for one week and with my turn the following week at my house.
Despite this custom and our mutual intimacy, when he suffered a financial crisis, he didn’t come to me, but his solitaire diamond ring which I had brought him from Paris disappeared. And when I inquired about the strange phenomenon, he explained to me that by necessity he used it as a family remembrance and by necessity, also, he stopped using it. And only before that crisis he had offered me sincerely, placing at my disposal, money that was reserved for contingent expenses.
His special passion for the study of languages reached its apogee when he found himself associated with polyglots who were members of the Geographical and Ethnographical Society of Berlin of which he became a member after the presentation of an original scholarly work, an indispensable condition for admission. It was known that this corporation, composed of scholars of different nationalities did not confer the honor of membership unless the aspirant fulfilled that essential requisite of the presentation of an original, not a trite work. For that reason Rizal, not wishing to be behind the scholars, presented his important paper Tagalische Verskunst (The Tagalog Art of Versification) – written in correct German, a paper that immediately won the warmest of praises by the members, particularly of the president.
We have said that Rizal’s fondness for the study of languages in Berlin was much developed, and, in fact, besides German, that he completely mastered English through the means of a German grammar. When he mastered the English language, he studied Italian by means of an English grammar, and, thus, he proceeded successively with respect to other languages which he studied. He had already mastered French in Madrid as he proved by the publication of articles in French and by teaching French to some fellow countrymen residing in that Spanish capital. Not withstanding, at Berlin, he studied with some predilection that language under a Parisian teacher, Madame Lucie Cerdolle, a teacher of French to the imperial family, who, with typical French amiability, invited us to eat at her house one day. Through that invitation I learned that Rizal was her pupil and teacher at the same time, that is, he explained to her with his own comments, the rules of French grammar, and she, in turn, explained to him rhetoric and the idioms of the French language. And when I wanted to know the reason for that unnecessary French luxury, he explained to me that his purpose was henceforth to write in French in case his Noli me tángere should fail, and his compatriots didn’t respond to the objectives of that book.
Besides his linguistic studies Rizal assiduously attended different clinics, classrooms, and conferences among which are worthwhile mentioning the clinic of Dr. Schultzer, whose assistant he was, the descriptive anatomy class of Dr. Hans Virchow, Jr., the conferences on anthropology of Dr. Virchow, Sr., and besides he was a collaborator of other scientific societies.
Among various books placed on his study table, beside Greek and Latin texts of the Gospel, there were also some with rare characters that were read backwards: It was a Hebrew Bible from which he sometimes translated for me some passages related to the religious ideas he expounded in the Noli me tángere, which he was correcting and cutting down at the time for economic and aesthetic reasons, suppressing words, passages, and chapters more or less bombastic. He said that he had studied Hebrew on purpose in order to be on the level of those who had written on the religion of Christ. Inasmuch as the original Bible was in Hebrew [Actually the Old Testament excluding those books in the Roman Catholic Old Testament what Protestants call the Apocrypha. The New Testament was originally written in Greek. – rly] he wanted to drink in the original fountains and at all events to be able to sustain religious polemics that his novel might arouse. According to his criterion, the religion of Christ was the most perfect among all the known religions not only for the moral spirit of its doctrines but also because it is the religion that has greatly influenced the discipline and moralization of mankind. However, on account of the modifications introduced by malice or religious fanaticism, it has become at present like a building that by dint of driving wedges into it, it has been greatly disfigured and threatens to fall apart. By way of example he cited Purgatory which is simply one of so many mystical inventions intended principally for the exploitation through the sale of ribbons, rosaries, and other religious articles to the candid and ignorant poor. As regards Hell he added it should not be as painted or photographed or cinematographed in religious books whose direct object is also the exploitation of one’s fellow men. To Dr. Rizal Christ was a religious genius, just ad Castelar was an oratorical genius and Bismarck was a genius in politics.
Reading some passages of h is novel in process of correction, he told me that many of his characters were his relatives and friends with fictitious names who, in fact, were involved in the events described in it. He, himself, was one of the victims of some of the outrages and abuses committed by some of its characters.
In the political field it is worthwhile remembering some of his points of view on the anomalous situation of the Philippines of that era. For the present he said he was not in favor of revolution. Because a social disturbance of that kind would foment and excite the latent colonial avarice of other powers, especially Japan, whose proximity to our Archipelago and the numerical superiority of her inhabitants with all their modern advancement in war materiel would undoubtedly make the Philippines a prey of that powerful nation, and it would be humanly impossible to shake off her yoke when we would want to do so. Therefore his plan for the present, he added, was limited to asking the Metropolis for liberal reforms, to inculcate or awaken the spirit of solidarity of the Filipino people hindered by the reigning friars, to stimulating the creation of diverse societies, and to fomenting and establishment of more or less cultural institutions, and others. As soon as the consolidation of that innate and natural sentiment for liberty induced by enlightenment is discerned in the popular spirit and instinct, then Spain, for the reason that she is a backward nation and consequently weakened by the stupidity of her rulers, justly or unjustly, would have no alternative but to renounce her sovereignty and accept our independence, but a legitimate independence based upon union and insured by a solid education.
In order to draw away from his many occupations and to follow the rules of the prescribed exercise, he bought a pocket pedometer with its own compass which he took along with him in his outings outside the city. After his walk he traced the configuration of the place he had covered with the addition of some systems of fortifications. And when he was not in the mood for this kind of exercise, then he visited the museums, aquarium, botanical garden, synagogue, Column of Victory, library, and others, evoking there memories of tragic and scientific events or interpreting hieroglyphics of prehistoric significance or the famous mummies of history.
Doctor Rizal was invited by a military captain and former aide-de-camp of General Moltke of the Franco-Prussian war (1870-71) to celebrate the New Year with his family. To commemorate the sumptuous feast, Doctor Rizal improvised an artistic remembrance consisting of a pair of Chinese clay jars for console tables which he bought a few hours before the event and on which he painted with Chinese ink, the figure of an old man representing the outgoing year, a boy representing the New Year, and a German matron representing time, for time in German is feminine – die zeit.
Unter den Linden was also frequented by Doctor Rizal not only because in one of the beer halls on that beautiful street there were newspapers from all countries of the world written in their respective languages, but also because the imperial family resided on that street. Emperor William I who lived in one of the palaces had the custom of appearing on the balcony every Saturday afternoon for a few minutes, thus personally announcing the state of his health to the public.
A rare incident that occurred in the life of our Rizal at Berlin was the following: It was about the personal call of Dr. F. Jagor on Dr. Rizal one morning. I heard from their conversation that they were talking about threats of deportation against Rizal. After the caller’s departure, we talked about the matter. The chief of police had visited him very early asking him for his passport, and as he didn’t have any with him, he was advised to show it at the police prefecture within four days from that date. Otherwise he would be conducted under guard to one of the German frontiers. Immediately we applied for the required passport at the Spanish Legation located in a distant district, the district of the Jews. After many comings and goings, so many promises, and the expiration of the four-day term, it turned out that the Count of Benomar, the ambassador or representative of the Spanish Government at Berlin, had no power to issue the promised passport. (The son of ex-Minister Moret who was at that time at Berlin taking advanced courses in civil engineering and assistant at the Spanish embassy besides also helped us amicably.) Vexed by that unexpected decision we went to the prefecture of police, not without cursing the Spanish regime, and there was exposed in satirical tone the solemn blunder committed by no less than an ambassador who, after promising so much and making us waste time in going back and forth, learned at the eleventh hour that it was not within his power to issue such a document. And now, lacking time to apply to another competent Spanish authority to give him such a document which, never in his travels in France was required of him, he placed himself unconditionally under the orders of the established government. The chief of police, after deliberating on what had been expounded, explained that the measure was due to the fact that Dr. Rizal had been visiting cities, towns, and villages, even the smallest and most insignificant, with more or less prolonged sojourns in all and each one of them and establishing certain personal relations with some of their inhabitants. The government, in view of the investigations made and the information furnished by the different police precincts, had interpreted all those steps taken by Dr. Rizal as acts of espionage in favor of the government of France. (At that time the relations were strained between the two countries on account of Alsace-Lorraine.) To all this Dr. Rizal replied that it was true that he had been in various points of Germany alluded to, not for any illicit motive but for purely instructive purposes. Desiring to study the ethnography of a nation, he had adopted the principle of making his preliminary investigation in the towns or the smallest villages where the customs and ways of living of the people are simple and natural, unlike in the large cities where these characteristics were more or less modified by artificial culture. In view of these explanations and perhaps of secret reports, the chief of police was satisfied and since then there were no more threats of deportation.
About theaters nothing notable can be recorded, at least during the five months of our life together at Berlin. Very rarely did I see him attend this kind of spectacle.
As soon as he had finished the correction of the Noli me tángere, he went immediately to a photographer to have his picture taken, in spite of his sickly look in order to adorn the cover of his book with his picture, an idea which I seconded inasmuch as in those times that was already a current custom among some writers. But after hesitating and reconsidering for some time, modesty prevailed over vanity; and thus the Noli me tángere appeared such as it was printed by the printing firm of Berliner Buchdruckerer-Actien-Gessellschaft, Setzerinnen-Schule des Lette-Vereins and therefore without the author’s photograph. While we went around different printing presses in search of the most economical prices, I insisted on defraying unconditionally the cost of printing the novel, but his delicacy found an excuse in Mr. Antonio Regidor residing at London, the painter Juan Luna at Paris, and his brother Paciano in the Philippines, who, he told me, were aware of the printing of his novel and at his first hint, any one of these would readily furnish any amount. But so much persistence and so much earnestness on my part finally overcame his resistance. After that, the work of printing began two thousand copies for three hundred pesos.
The genuine merit and importance of this work I was able to appreciate only when I read the proofs every day as they were delivered to the author. The importance of the work must have been understood by the compositors at the press, for during the course of the printing, one of those in charge of delivering the proofs to the house of the author, without knowing a word of Spanish, could not repress himself and manifested that he forbade a fatal end for the author of the novel if he should return to the Philippines, because with all certainty they would cut off his head (and for greater emphasis he raised his hand to his own neck moving it horizontally.) And then he permitted himself to give the advice that he should not go to the Philippines. By way of a reply the author merely smiled as if saying: What’s done is done.
The printing of the Noli me tángere having been finished, he presented to me the galley proofs carefully rolled, the pen, or one of the pens that he used in writing it, serving as the axis or center, and all nicely wrapped in sturdy paper with a significant dedication. He also presented me with a bound copy with an autography that said:
To my dear friend Máximo Viola, the first who read and appreciated my work.
I lost all these unforgettable remembrances during the Revolution of 1896.
Remembering afterwards his friends in Europe, he began sending a copy to each one of them. By way of prologue to his desired return to the Philippines, he also sent a copy to the Most Excellent Captain General of the Philippines and another to the Most Illustrious Archbishop of Manila. As a reply to my observations against that demonstration of rash gallantry towards the two mentioned authorities he gave me a Voltairian smile.
After some time and as soon as he received a draft for one thousand pesos from his family through the painter Luna, the first thing he did was to pay me the amount of three hundred pesos, I had advanced and then he prepared the itinerary of our travels.
In the meantime he began to write farewell letters to his friends residing in Europe announcing his longed for return to his native country. The letters were answered with energetic opposition and manifest reproofs on the part of Mr. Antonio Regidor, Mr. Juan Luna, and others. Nevertheless, the projected trip was carried out despite all anxieties and against all suggestions and fraternal advice. We discussed this matter at length and tried to set forth different points of view. Nothing we discussed produced anything convincing or had a settling effect. Indeed, Rizal said that he had some mission to accomplish on earth. Inasmuch as God had given him that manner of thinking and being, to act otherwise distinct from his own convictions would be tantamount to rebellion against his will which might condemn him. Just as a physician who had studied the manner of preventing, cutting, or alleviating the physical ailments of man, in the same way he was convinced of the duty of consecrating himself to remedying the moral diseases of his people subjected to the Spanish flag. Moreover, he doubted how his fellow countrymen would respond to the purposes of his novel if he didn’t set the example personally in his own country. They could say that if he could write and say all that he pleased it was because his skin was far from any danger. And when I proposed the change of nationality, at least to lessen the violent effects of the certain outrage to which he was very much exposed, he argued that ll that was pure cowardice that he couldn’t by any means consider and that at all events he would gladly accept the fate of the ant which continued biting even after death.
As the date of our departure from Berlin had been previously agreed upon, we had more than fifteen days left to spend in instructive recreational activities, walking daily from six to eight hours in the environs of Berlin, looking at her monuments such as the Column of Victory made of cannons taken from the French in the Franco-Prussian War, the synagogue, a beautiful building entered with the hat on and whose priest, who had the voice of Gavarre, sang every Friday afternoon during religious ceremonies attracting a large audience; the National Gallery, theaters, museums, castles, libraries, Reichstag, and others which I regret I can’t describe in detail as I have lost my travel notes.
However, I can put down here some data about our life in Berlin during that fortnight which would give an idea of the plan we followed in visiting other cities. When we got up in the morning or even before that, we opened Baedeker’s map and we learned by heart some straight or principal streets to orient ourselves in case we became lost. We read the guidebook to find out the time of the opening of museums, libraries, offices, and others and to get some notion of the history of the city to be visited. Thus prepared, he took his breakfast (a glass of water) and we immediately set out on foot in a straight line to the end of the city visiting all the museums or monuments found on our way. At the time we entered a café nearest to the place we were visiting for our breakfast, and afterwards we continued our walk. At lunch time (between twelve and one o’clock) we went to the nearest restaurant and after eating (he ate double my ration) he read some newspapers, magazines, and others, and we immediately resumed our interrupted tour, always in accordance with the guidebook. In the afternoon, between five and six or earlier, when there was nothing more to visit, we returned to the point of departure through different streets through almost parallel to the one we went through before. The following day we repeated the same procedure, taking another street and, if possible, parallel to the one we had taken before without failing to see and study the worthwhile objects or buildings located on the street. On our return we took another street parallel to the former one and thus successively completed or simulated circuits of parallel lines having approximately the same direction keeping always keeping our point of departure as our center. If we failed to visit some other museum or building in one of these parallel lines of our excursions, then we took the streets transversal to the known ones, continuing our excursions in this way through the successive streets. When marked graphically on paper, the streets we had gone through represented a geometric figure very similar to a spider web. When we passed by some old tree planted by a historical personage, a beautiful or rare plant that symbolized a memorable epoch or commemorated some historic event, he picked a leaf or flower of it and methodically kept it between the leaves of a book that he always carried in his hand.
After knowing Berlin according to the system described, we moved on to Potsdam and with the pedometer always in the pocket we succeeded to know what that historic was in detail with its fantastic mausoleum with her excellent marble statue of Frederick the Great and his consort in a lying position, various palaces or buildings of different architectural styles, made of marble or other materials, in whose luxurious halls were admired decorations of bronze, topaz, or shells of various colors and sizes forming fantastic combinations. Amazed at the contemplation of so much luxury, we wondered whether all the luxury in the immense garden, whose outlines were lost in the distance, that Frederick the Great ordered to be built, was the work of man or marvels from another world.
Worthy of mention also was the windmill for wheat standing in the neighborhood of that magnificent garden whose presence formed a contrast to the sumptuous buildings already mentioned. The fame of this windmill had its origin in a dispute between a private owner and Frederick the Great. When Frederick the Great was once ill, his physician prescribed his transfer to one of his palaces which was close to this windmill erected on private land. As the windmill continuously operated day and night, its noise bothered the illustrious patient. Finally he sent for the owner and proposed to him either the sale or the removal of the troublesome apparatus. Naturally the owner opted for the sale but they could not agree on a price. Consequently, the emperor imposed himself, threatening to take the dissident owner to the courts of law for the solution of the conflict. The owner then replied that in that case he would like to find out if there was justice in Berlin. In fact, he got it inasmuch as the windmill remains in its place until now as a symbol of German justice. Since then the boastful invocation of German justice by the Germans has become proverbial in all controversies arising between the weak and the strong. Rizal, envious of that symbol of justice, could not refrain from exclaiming, “Fortunate country is this that does not have to suffer so much thirst for justice like ours, because here the rule of law and judges prevail and not the friars!”
While engaged in preparations for our trip I found in Rizal’s luggage a bundle of nothing more than a large collection of letters from relatives, friends, and countrymen addressed to him among which I saw my own dated at Barcelona. I asked Rizal he preserved all this correspondence whether important or not. Rizal explained that through the correspondence he wanted to study the character, temperament, transformation, and intellectual tendencies of his friends and countrymen.
At the break of day of the 11th of May 1887, we departed from Berlin and we visited the following cities:
It was one of the best cities of Germany and in its study we spent more time than what was necessary due to the timely celebration of a regional exhibition of floriculture [The cultivation of flowering and ornamental plants. – rly]. We were entertained for sometime by the contemplation of such a numerous variety of flowers of extraordinary size and beauty, such as the leaves of aquatic plants of some two meters in diameter. In visiting monuments and other notable buildings and museums the same Rizalian procedure already known was adopted. The other details of our visit were to be found in the guidebook already referred to. There being nothing more to study we moved on to
This city offers nothing notable in comparison to other cities already visited and nevertheless we stopped here due to the suggestion of Dr. Feodor Jagor  made through a casual encounter we had at the Dresden Exhibition. We telegraphed Professor Blumentritt about our arrival from the previous city of our stop, for being of a nervous temperament, our sudden appearance might hurt him. After sending the telegram we continued our tip to
The kind friend whom before that moment we knew only through pictures and letters was awaiting us at the railroad station. As our train approached the station the current of mutual identification between friends who were anxious to see each other was soon established. We stepped down to greetings and fraternal embraces, the sign of our effusive sympathy and friendship. Conducted to our hotel, the Krebs, and after being installed in it, Blumentritt invited us with his proverbial kindness to his house where his table immediately became ours under the direction of his no less amiable wife, Doña Rosa, who displayed no little attention and amiability in receiving and entertaining us during our sojourn in that city. The topic of our conversation was varied and pleasant as was to be expected in that joyous and cordial interview. Speaking about the Noli me tángere, the Austrian professor said to me that “It was a book written with the blood of the heart, according to a German expression, and at whose denouncement even more unpleasant scenes than those in the novel itself might arise, considering the limitless influence of the friars on the Spanish government.” 
Friend Blulmentritt accompanied us in our regular excursions and if he had to leave our company for some time because of his professional occupations, then one or two friends of his, like Dr. Klutschack, took his place. At night, we took dinner invariably at the same hospitable hose of our semi-Filipino friend. After talking about Philippine themes preferably, he accompanied us unto the door of our hotel. The following day, very early, the tireless friend would be in the lobby of our hotel waiting for the customary hour of our coming down and, after breakfast, he accompanied us to resume our interrupted excursions, taking us to curious places, more or less instructive and other places of historical attraction.
With a previous understanding, one afternoon, our amiable host invited us to a beer-hall in which the best beer of Bohemia was served. While there we overheard the conversation of some tourists who were occupied a neighboring table. They were discussing the convenience of making the railroad pass by one of the towns close to Leitmeritz (I don’t remember the name of the town). Friend Blumentritt introduced us to the president of the club who, after the usual greetings and welcome, said, among other things the following: That, if later a Filipino traveler would have a chance to reach those places, the project under discussion would be a reality, in which case we could recommend the inclusion in the itinerary of the traveler of that town for whose improvement they were interested. After him, Dr. Rizal replied with an extemporaneous speech in German which was applauded by the audience at the end, particularly by the president of the club who asked how much time Rizal had spent learning German. When Rizal replied that he had studied the language eleven months, their admiration rose and they called him a privileged talent. For his part Professor Blumentritt embraced and felicitated him warmly, adding that they, themselves, found it difficult to improvise speeches in their own language, for which reason they didn’t expect this from an extemporaneous speaker, a showing worthy of a tribute, inasmuch as there was a great distance between writing well in German as Dr. Rizal had already demonstrated previously in his various letters, and the literary merit that never had the learned Philippinologist imagined Rizal possessed.
Rizal, desiring to commemorate our sojourn at the semi-Filipino Austrian home, asked one day, after a luncheon, for pencil and other things necessary for a crayon drawing, and after working for awhile, he produced a picture of our host, Blumentritt, seated in the dining-room chair. The souvenir pleased our friend and his respectable family very much. Among the rarities we admired at Leitmeritz, I remember two volumes of the Bible edited in ancient times for which the English government had offered three thousand pounds sterling.
As a conclusion to so much affability displayed by the affectionate family of our unforgettable Blumentritt, they tendered us on the day before the eve of our departure a fraternal farewell banquet on Schutzen-Inseln (Shooters’ Isle), served nicely by one of the famed restaurants of that picturesque islet inhabited by some centuries-old trees. After the dinner, the conversation turned to the personal merits of the author of the Noli me tángere, Professor Blumentritt spoke to me of him in laudatory terms saying that Dr. Rizal was the greatest son of the Philippines and his coming to the world was like the apparition of a rare comet of special brilliance that could only be admired once every two centuries.
The following night we returned the hospitality of the generous Filipino-Austrian family, tendering them a modest dinner in the upper floor of the restaurant of our hotel, or rather in the same room where we were living. Rizal’s diamond necktie pin was lost here, but none of the dinner guests learned about the loss until later, after a few days of our arrival at Vienna. Discovering the loss of his pin that he had worn on his necktie on the night of the dinner, Rizal immediately wrote Friend Blumentritt giving details of the probable place where it had been lost. Upon an investigation of the hotel boys, it was found out that one of the boys who cleaned our room found the jewel on the rug. It was taken by Blumentritt and sent with a letter to Rizal at the Vienna Hotel Metropole in a perfumed package. That honesty of the boy of the Hotel Krebs led Rizal to make critical comparisons which were certainly very unfavorable to the Spanish people.
The following day our friend and brother Blumentritt, his wife Doña Rosa, their children Loleng, Federico, and Conrado, and Professor Klutschack accompanied us to the railroad station where all of us shared tears at our sad parting. We departed for
The recommendation furnished us gallantly by Professor Blumentritt to Dr. Willkomm (may he rest in peace), professor of natural history at the University of Prague, greatly simplified and made pleasant the Rizalian system of visiting this city; the said professor, accompanied by his charming daughter, served as our sightseeing guide in our visits to the remains of the celebrated geographer Ptolemy or Copernicus,  one of the three inventors of the planetary system; to the laboratories of bacteriology; museums of natural history; to the din or tiny cave which served as the prison cell of St. John of Nepomunceno; the bridge from which the said martyr was thrown into the river marked with a piece of marble, worn out by the kisses of so many votaries. With a recommendation of Dr. Willkomm we took leave of him and his kind family to go to
About this city I remember no notable event related to Rizal, except our sightseeing, according to the guidebook. From here we moved on to
Beautiful Austrian capital city whose best buildings were located in the majority on a beautiful street called Ring (in the form of a ring). In accordance with the suggestions of Dr. Willkomm and Baedeker we found it necessary to spend four days in the tour of its grand and artistic buildings as well as in the analytical examination of the sacred ornaments and images of saints exhibited in a timely exposition held at that capital. Some of the images exhibited had more ancient or historic value than artistic. One of the exhibits was a wooden crucifix, of natural size, at whose back was a large hole through which could pass a watermelon of ordinary size. As Rizal had a well-developed and cultivated artistic sense, I asked his opinion on this object. According to him, in its day, the crucifix was made to talk, replying to sermons delivered by the preacher from the pulpit, the better to convince the audience. In one of our tours of that city, Rizal encounted the figure of a temptress in the form of a Viennese woman, of the family of the Camellias or Margarite, of extraordinary beauty and irresistible attraction, who seemingly had been expressly invited to offer for a moment the cup of mundane pleasure to the apostle of Philippine freedom who, until then, had enjoyed among his intimates, the fame worthy of his glorious namesake St. Joseph.
With the exception of this case I knew of no other slip of Rizal during more than six months of our living together. His “fall” in Dapitan, under that regime and atmosphere which were very difficult from a free life, where the vegetative life predominated over a very active intellectual life to which our hero was accustomed, deserved separate consideration by the doctors of the Holy Mother Church, who ought to know how to judge within the pretended conversion of Rizal whether his love for Miss Josephine, which was not sealed by the vow of chastity, was in accordance or not with the well-known moral dictum that “Idleness the mother of all vices.” With regard to his platonic love for his former fiancée, Leonor Rivera, there is the circumstance, proving the control of his clear and strong mind over his heart, that despite his very great love for her, moderation impelled him to send her from Berlin for the Christmas of 1886, nothing more than a modest little box of stationery, although there wre in the shop special kinds suitable for sweethearts and at bargain prices.
In order to change panoramas, in the continuation of our trip, we preferred to take a little ship of the kind that made trips on the famed Danube in conjunction with the railroad.
During the fluvial trip, the novelty consisted of the interpretation of historical events connected with the famed river and the fact that we used paper napkins on the dining table for the second time, a hygienic and economical novelty. The end of that river trip was
We spent little time here in sightseeing on account of the slight importance of the city, and soon we took the train to go on to
At this place we also did not stay long, just enough to see the city according to the suggestions in the guidebook of Baedeker. Afterwards, we continued on to
MÜNCHEN  (MUNICH)
A pretty city in which, among other things described by Baedeker, was that here one could drink the best beer in Germany. Here were the two best breweries which were expanding and where at the meal served us there we were again given paper napkins. I don’t remember any other thing that happened to Rizal in this city. From here we passed on to
One of the old cities of Germany for the architectural style of its buildings as well as for its aspect and the plan of its streets. Among the varied impressions gathered of this ancient city I recall only the different apparatus used for torture by the Inquisition, some of human form in whose cavity could be enclosed perfectly a person sentenced to suffer martyrdom through iron nails arranged in such a way that when the apparatus operated the person inside it would be hit immediately by the tips of the nails on all parts of his body. Other instruments of torture simulated horses with their saddles bull of nails protruding in all directions, stirrups that compressed until the bones of the feet of the hapless condemned man were fractured by means of certain springs. All this could not fail to hurt our feelings, especially of Dr. Rizal who had paid much attention to them. He also took notice of a very deep well that in order for a pail to reach its bottom two or three minutes ere needed. The favorite industry here was the large scale manufacturing of dolls which invaded all the markets of the world. We embarked for
The cathedral of this city was considered the largest and tallest in all Germany. It was under construction at that time and its tower still lacked the last story. Notwithstanding, in climbing those stairs of hundreds of steps, I was forced to rest twice, and even then, upon reaching the last story under construction, I felt dizzy with fatigue, while my companion Rizal was able to climb those stairs without resting and the least trouble. From this city we passed on to
After the regular tour about which I remember nothing we passed on to
The same method of sightseeing, after which we were to
RHEINFALL or CASCADE OF THE RHINE
It was the grandest cascade of Europe; we forded the great river in front of the same cataract in a banca (boat) which vibrated very much on account of the surge produced by the great quantity of water in its vertiginous and noisy fall. We bought some souvenirs of our visit to that beautiful cascade and then we proceeded to
I refer again to Baedeker’s guidebook with regard to our visit to this place. From here to
BASEL  (BALE)
The same forgetfulness with regard to impressions of some importance.
After the usual sightseeing, we went to
Here we boarded a little steamer sailing on Lake Leman. Soon after our departure thee appeared a thick fog that impeded vision within two meters from the steamer, thus compelling the captain to sound the horn every five minutes while the phenomenon lasted. We disembarked at
One of the best cities or Switzerland most visited by foreigners. After getting from the customs the luggage sent from Berlin, we spent our time visiting the city in which German, Italian, and French were spoken. Our indefatigable traveler, Rizal, was able to talk with its polyglot inhabitants. Some afternoons we sailed on rented steamers covering a good portion of that lake of crystalline waters slightly tinted blue. L In these fluvial excursions our Rizal learned to row for the first time with his extraordinary resistance, being my rower on going under my direction and my director on the return. On the fourth or fifth day of our stay there, or rather on 19 June 1887, he told me that he was 26 years old. After a few more days of our usual excursions, we checked our luggage, each one going his own way, he to Italy and I to Barcelona. Before concluding these lines I must state that the economical spirit of that martyr during our travels was always in harmony with what was strictly necessary and indispensable, but compatible with comfort and security. Thus our roundtrip tickets from Stetlin until Geneva, good for three months, were of second class, with first-class privileges on the steamers in conjunction with the railroad. The rooms we took at the hotels were also of the second class. On the 23 June of the said year, we boarded together the same train and we separated upon reaching the frontiers of Switzerland, he going to Italy and I to Barcelona.
At Manila and in December of that same year of 1887 we met at the house of Mr. Pedro Serrano, San José Street (Trozo). Having learned of my arrival at the city on my way to my hometown of San Miguel de Mayumo and that I was at that house, he called on me early in the morning. It was a very timely visit. I recommended to him a man suffering from eye trouble named Lorenzo Tuazon of Malabon who as thinking of going to Kalamba to put himself under his professional care at my suggestion. Later, the eye of this patient was operated on by him at Madrid.
Our second interview at this capital took place on the last days of June, 1892, before his deportation to Dapitan, at his invitation, having written me on the first day of his arrival at Manila. He then lived at the Hotel de Oriente and in daily conferences with General Despujol, whose course and impressions he reported to me daily upon his return from Malacañang Palace.
Altogether the result of his famous conferences with the said general was sometimes optimistic and other times pessimistic. Pessimistic with regard to the project of emigration to Borneo to establish a Filipino agricultural colony composed of Borneo to establish a Filipino agricultural colony composed of his relatives and friends under the protection for 999 years of the British Government which had already approved in principle the by-laws of that association. Submitted to Rizal for his approval General Despujol opposed it telling him that his patriotism ought not to patronize, much less support, such a thought inasmuch as it would infer a manifest bleeding of the anemic and languishing Philippine agriculture, taking away workers from the already depleted working masses. Rizal replied that he too as much as any official regretted his decision but in the midst of so much evils that beset his country, his plan to go to Borneo was the lesser evil and could be desired and the supreme good capable of remedying so many individual and collective misfortunes, for the religious corporations all the members of his family were bad and superfluous elements that must be eliminated at any cost, just as his father, brothers, and friends had been eliminated by administrative orders. At this point the conference turned optimistic as General Despujol in a sudden fit of clemency instantly decreed the immediate release of his father and other members of his family. The conference discussed also the Noli me tángere and El Filibusterismo which, according to General Despujol, speaking through reports, contained very subversive and separatist ideas, principles contrary to the religious spirit of Spanish sovereignty in the Philippines. As the general had not red the novels, Dr. Rizal offered to furnish His Excellency copies of them; but as the general did not express any great desire to read them, Dr. Rizal merely explained them in more or less the following words: Reading the Noli me tángere superficially, the reader would discover that its author was anti-Spanish, and a Filibustero in the sectarian or relative meaning of the terms, but going deeper in his reading, his impression would change and the El Filibusterismo, on the other hand, read superficially, created the impression that the author was a Hispanized nationalist and at closer examination, the Spanish mask disappeared and the physiognomy of the genuine Filibustero was presented in its conventional reality. And it was so in fact, for both works were animated by a single spirit. In the Noli me tángere had been modified from the point of view of colonial injustices.
Upon reaching this point the conferences were suspended until the following day, the general pretending to have other more urgent business. But on the third or fourth day after the suspension of the conferences which I had already abandoned in view of the fact that they didn’t seem to have any prospect of ending soon, upon my arrival at my hometown, I was surprised by a minute search of my house carried out by a Spaniard, special agent of the government, accompanied by several civil guards with their chief at the head who transmitted to me the sad news of the detention of Dr. Rizal at the Fuerza de Santiago [= Fort Santiago]. Before his detention and on one of the first days of that tragic interview, I invited Dr. Rizal to the house of Attorney Nazario Constantino where some partisans of his awaited him for a conference, and there I had an opportunity to offer him the amount of one hundred pesos, though little, to help him in his extraordinary expenses; but as always for delicacy he refused to accept it. Thus I was obliged to deposit it with Mr. Constantino in his presence and placing it at his disposal. From his exile at Dapitan he wrote Dr. Aristón Bautista entrusting to him the purchase of a second-hand camera for one hundred pesos which he said he could collect from Mr. Constantino; but as Dr. Bautista could not find a camera of the kind described in his letter, he desisted from collecting the money.
Later, in September 1893, Mr. Constantino, impatient at the silence and inaction of Dr. Rizal with regard to the money, suggested to me the desirability of investing that amount in some lucrative business, whatever might be the fate of the unfortunate exile. Considering the suggestion favorable to the interests of Rizal, w decided to invest it in the purchase o 16 shares of the gold mine of Mambulao which, at that time, and English company offered to exploit through the cooperation of shareholders, particularly Filipinos. This company, as it is known, failed and it is not known what had been its definitive end until this time.
This is all my reminiscence of 26 years ago about my personal relationship with our idol from Barcelona, Germany, Austria, and Switzerland until the Philippines, regretting not to be able to record more fully the other details surrounding the life of the Martyr for having lost my travel notes during the Revolution of 1896 on account of the searches done by Spaniards and Americans and the various changes of my domicile motivated by political persecutions committed against my humble person by the past and present regimes.
Manila, 16 January 1913
Signed: Máximo Viola
 A euphemism for houses of ill repute.
 Professor Miguel Morayta, was a Spanish liberal who sympathized with Philippine aspirations and was elected president of the Asociación Hispano-Filipina that had been founded y the Filipinos at Madrid on 12 July 1888. In addition to publishing the Barcelona La Publicidad he was at one time a member of the Spanish parliament or Cortes.
 During the Spanish regime, the Filipinos did not speak of Spain as a foreign country. Hence Rizal, who was on his way to another European country, was said to be going abroad.
 Pansit is a favorite dish of Filipinos. It is made of noodles called bijon, made of rice, or mique, made of lour, with pork, shrimp, chicken, and other ingredients sautéed with garlic and onion.
 Félix Ma. Roxas was a distinguished Filipino lawyer who served as mayor of Manila from 1905 to 1917. He died at the age of 72 on June of 1936.
 He stayed at the Hotel de Paris, 37 Rue Maubeuge, from the 4th to the 10th December 1886.
 The bill of the Central Hotel proves that Viola stayed there from 11 to 14 December. From the hotel he moved to a boarding house.
 In Silesia, formerly an Austrian duchy.
 Dr. Feodor Jagor, a wealthy Prussian scholar residing at Berlin, who enjoyed enviable fame in the European scientific world as well as in India. In 1891 he went to the Celebes and returned to Berlin at the age of 74 with new scientific discoveries. He died at Berlin in 1900. he was the author of Reisen in den Philippinen (Travels in the Philippines) Berlin, 1873, and “On the Natives of Naga, Luzon, Philippine Islands” published in the Journal of the Ethnological Society of London, 1870, vol. II, No. 2, pp. 170-175.
 To what Dr. Viola says about their visit to Professor Blumentritt we can add what this illustrious Austrian wrote on 20 May 19111 to a friend of his at Manila. This letter was published in La Vanguardia on 1 July 1911 and among other things he said:
Rizal had that novell (Noli me tángere) printed at the Lette Press, Lette being the name of a society or association whose purpose was to give bread to women, so that its compositors were not men but women. After the last copy had been printed, Rizal left Berlin to embark at Marseille to return to his country, accompanied by his intimate friend Dr. Máximo Viola y Sison. In the course of that trip he stopped at Dresden, Leitmeritz, Prague, Munich, and various cities of Switzerland. About the visit of Rizal to Leitmeritz I can furnish you with the following data:
Mr. José Rizal and Mr. Máximo Viola arrived at Leitmeritz at 1:30 in the afternoon of 13 May 1887. I met them at the station and we went together to Hotel Krebs (or Crabs). After having been installed in their room, number 12, Rizal, Viola, and I went to my residence. We had a very pleasant time until 10:30 p.m. My wife felt the most pleasant satisfaction upon seeing that Austro-Bohemian dishes were enjoyed by our Filipino friends. The conversation was very animated and the impression was most pleasant. My children later became friends of our friends.
The 14th May was a very cold day but it did not bother Rizal, who withstood the cold better than ourselves, children of the country. Rizal found out that on the afternoon of that day the board of directors of the Tourists’ Club (whose secretary I was) would hold a meeting, and he asked me permission to attend it, for he was very much interested in everything that was being done in Europe to attract tourists and to open the public roads that made picturesque spots of the country accessible. Rizal and Viiola received the desired invitation. The president of the club, José Krombholz, cordially greeted the Filipinos and at the same time begged them to pardon us for boasting so much of our landscape, poor and rachitic in comparison to the beautiful and exuberant vegetation of the Philippines with her majestic volcanoes and lands. Rizal replied in perfect German in the following tenor, the text of his speech, not having been preserved verbatim:
“The vegetation of my native land is certainly richer and all its landscape variegated with brilliant colors; but this country of Bohemia is also beautiful for its simplicity and idyllic scenery. But what I admire among you is the love you have for your native land, the appreciation of her beauty, the intimate contact between man and nature. To the tourists here nature is the object of admiration and of a very special cult that serves to exalt the soul. When we are afflicted, our nerves are agitated, we cannot bear either the echo of the best music in the world or the consolation of friends or the distractions of social life. But as it happens in European countries, inhabited by Germanic peoples, accustomed to read the expression of nature, we find the best solace in the solitude of the forest, in gazing at the clouds that cross the space above, in admiring the beauty of the flowers, and in listening to the innocent song of the little birds. We forget our afflictions and troubles, the hand of the Creator caresses us, and on our return home, we feel refreshed, for nature has gladdened the formerly saddened soul. For this reason, I admire the activity of the members of the Tourists’ Club, because, instead of taking the traveler to the noisy life, to the bars and bright spots of the cities, they invite the man with a heart and soul to acquire new strength for the struggle of life to the bosom of nature, pure, sublime, and enchanting.”
This speech aroused the greatest enthusiasm of the audience and was rewarded with an applause very rare among my very cold countrymen.
On 15 May our Filipino friends visited the churches, the bishop’s residence and other important buildings of this city. We visited also my special friend, Dr. Carlos Czepelack, who, though immobilized by a partial paralysis, has wished to see Rizal and pay him his homage, because I had spoken to him much about Rizal and I had translated to him some salient chapters of the Noli. My friends were very much satisfied with the very affectionate reception they were given by the old parents of Czepelack. Rizal told me that friendly hospitality reminded him of Filipino customs. Naturally they dined with us. We visited the Island of Shooters whose gigantic trees greatly pleased Rizal.
On 16 May Professor Robert Klutschack, a venerable naturalist, invited Rizal, Viola, and me to eat at his house. The dinner was held at the Hotel Krebs, for my friends Rizal and Viola had invited us to dine there with them.
On the 16th, at 9:45 a.m. Rizal and Viola left by train for Prague. They were accompanied to the station by my whole family and Professor Klutschack. When the train started, my little daughter Loleng ran (like a butterfly, wrote Rizal) beside the coach greeting with her tiny hands the dear Filipino friends. The parting deeply moved us and tears moistened our eyes.
 The author Dr. Viola, writing from memory in January 1913, that is 26 years after his travel, was not certain whether it was Ptolemy or Copernicus. As he says further on, he lost his travel notes during the 1896 Revolution.
 The bill of Hotel Metropole of Vienna is preserved. It attests to the stay of the travelers Rizal and Viola from 20-24 of May. A postal card sent by Dr. Viola to his father affirms that they arrived at Vienna on that day, the 20th.
 The bill of the Rheinscher Hof or Rhine Hotel in München (Munich) proves the travelers lodged there from the 26-30 May 1887. A paper napkin with the mark of Lowenbran-keller in München with a note that it was used on 29 May 1887 tells us that on that day the travelers drank beer thee.
 The bill of Hotel Müller of Schaffhausen proves that they stayed there on the 2nd and 3rd June 1887.
 A paper napkin with the stamp of Baversiche Bierhalle, Basel, and with a note that it was used on 3 May 1887 proves that Rizal and Viola had drunk beer at that place on the day mentioned.
 Extant is a bill of the Schweizerhof of Berne.