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Gomburza marker at Luneta Park

Gomburza or GOMBURZA is an acronym denoting the surnames of the priests Mariano Gomez, José Burgos, and Jacinto Zamora, three Filipino priests who were executed on 17 February 1872 at Luneta Park in Bagumbayan, Philippines by Spanish colonial authorities on charges of subversion arising from the 1872 Cavite mutiny. Their execution had a profound effect on many Filipinos; José Rizal, the national hero, would dedicate his novel El filibusterismo to their memory. [1]

The uprising by workers in the Cavite Naval Yard was the pretext[2][3] needed by the authorities to redress a perceived humiliation from the principal objective, José Burgos, who threatened the established order.


During the Spanish colonial period, four social class distinctions were observed in the islands. These were 1) Spaniards who were born in Spain— peninsulares, 2) Spaniards born in the colonies of Spain (Latin America or the Philippines)—insulares or Creoles, 3) Spanish mestizos, Chinese mestizos or 'Indios' (natives) dwelling within or near the city (or town) and the church, and, finally, 4) Chinese or Sangley and rural Indios.[4]

Burgos was a Creoles, a Doctor of Philosophy[citation needed] whose prominence extended even to Spain, such that when the new Governor and Captain-General Carlos María de la Torre arrived from Spain to assume his duties, he invited Burgos to sit beside him in his carriage during the inaugural procession, a place traditionally reserved for the Archbishop and who was a peninsular Spaniard. The arrival of the liberal de la Torre was opposed by the ruling minority of friars, regular priests who belonged to an order (Dominicans, Augustinians, Recollects, and Franciscans) and their allies in civil government, but supported by the secular priests, most of whom were mestizos and indios assigned to parishes and far-flung communities, who believed that the reforms and the equality they wanted with peninsular Spaniards coming. In less than two years, de la Torre was replaced by Rafael de Izquierdo.

The Cavite Mutiny[edit]

Main article: 1872 Cavite mutiny

The so-called Cavite Mutiny of workers in the arsenal of the naval shipyard over pay reduction owing to increased taxation produced a willing witness to implicate the three priests, who were summarily tried and sentenced to death by garrote on February 17, 1872. The bodies of the three priests were buried in a common, unmarked grave in the Paco Cemetery, in keeping with the practice of burying enemies of the state.[2] Significantly, in the archives of Spain, there is no record of how Izquierdo, himself a liberal, could have been influenced to authorize these executions.[citation needed] Gregorio Meliton Martinez, then the Archbishop of Manila, refused to defrock the priests, citing they did not break any canon law. He ordered the bells of every church to be rung in honor of the executed priests. The aftermath of the investigation produced scores of suspects, most of whom were exiled to Guam in the Marianas. Except for a few who managed to escape to other ports like Hong Kong, most of the suspects died.

Recovery of remains[edit]

Grave site of Gomez, Burgos, and Zamora in Paco Park, Manila.

Early in 1998, bones believed to belong to one of the three executed priests were discovered at the Paco Park Cemetery by the Manila City Engineers Office.[5]

Gomburza sculpture at Parish of the Holy Sacrifice.

See also[edit]

Further reading[edit]

  • Zaide, Gregorio F. (1984). Philippine History and Government. National Bookstore Printing Press. 


  1. ^ "Nationalista Party History". Archived from the original on 2007-06-27. Retrieved 2007-07-30. 
  2. ^ a b "The Secularization Issue and the Execution of Gomburza". Archived from the original on 2007-09-28. Retrieved 2007-07-30. 
  3. ^ "Padre Jose Ma. Burgos". Retrieved 2007-07-30. 
  4. ^ "Hidalgo and Luna: Vexed Modernity". Retrieved 2007-07-30. 
  5. ^ Casipit, Jennifer R. "GOMBURZA. Reluctant martyrs started it all". Retrieved 2007-07-30. 

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gomburza — Please support Wikipedia.
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99 news items

Journal Online

Journal Online
Thu, 26 Nov 2015 05:07:30 -0800

Lumawak masyado ang samahan nila kaya natakot ang Spanish authorities and accused them of heresy. He fought for religious freedom and was executed in 1841 at the age of only 27. His life inspired the secular priests, the Gomburza, who were executed ...
Tue, 17 Feb 2015 10:51:16 -0800

Textbook history makes it easier for us to remember the three priests as “Gomburza” (for Gomez, Burgos and Zamora). Who thought up this sequence? If we follow the alphabetical order, the acronym should be “Burgomza.” If we follow seniority at the time ...

GMA News

GMA News
Thu, 18 Jun 2015 20:33:45 -0700

... but he was only prompted to use the name Rizal so the Spaniards wouldn't be able to track him down as his brother Paciano was being pursued for being linked in an uprising which led to the martyrdom of three Filipino priests known as the Gomburza.


Sat, 01 Aug 2015 03:39:54 -0700

Ojascastro said the Filipino book was dedicated to heroes of the revolution like Hermano Pule and Gomburza, and the faithful who cannot understand English. Aside from Cavite, the book will also be used by some churches in Southern Luzon and the United ...

GMA News

GMA News
Thu, 23 Apr 2015 03:00:27 -0700

Gomburza,” is a riveting painting of Jose Burgos, Mariano Gomez and Jacinto Zamora, who were executed by Spanish authorities in 1872. In the painting are images of politicians, priests, the Statue of Liberty, Jose Rizal, and De Guzman's family: the ...

Manila Bulletin

Manila Bulletin
Sun, 30 Aug 2015 08:56:15 -0700

Born in 1864, two years after the execution of the martyr priests Gomburza, Roxas grew up during the waning years of the Spanish Regime and served in the government during the American Period. He was a student in Spain at the time of the Propaganda ...
BusinessWorld Online Edition
Thu, 13 Aug 2015 08:15:49 -0700

THE PHILIPPINE population reached 100 million in 2014, and is projected to reach 101.6 million this year. The projection is based on an annual growth rate of 2.1%, which, while lower than the 2.42% rate from 1990 to 1995, is still the highest in the ...
The Manila Times
Wed, 07 Oct 2015 07:03:45 -0700

Paco Park was also the burial site of the three priests known as Gomburza (Mariano Gomez, Jose Burgos, and Jacinto Zamora) who were accused as agitators of Philippine independence. They were executed on Feb. 17, 1872 at Bagumbayan. Their deaths ...

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