1535: Etienne de la Forge, John Calvin’s friend 1960: Oliviu Beldeanu, for the Berne incident

1872: Gomburza

February 17th, 2010 Headsman

On this date in 1872, reformist Filipino priests Mariano Gomez, Jose Burgos and Jacinto Zamora (together, the first syllables of their surname formed the acronym “Gomburza”) were garroted in Manila for their alleged support of an anti-Spanish mutiny.

These three clerics were leading exponents of liberalization; they notably pressed the rights of the native-born clergy as against the powerful religious hierarchy of imported Spanish priests.

While that critique had a somewhat receptive ear under the forward-thinking governorship of Gen. Carlos-Maria de la Torre, a more reactionary successor did not look as kindly on such agitation.

When naval shipyard workers rebelled in the 1872 Cavite Mutiny — over higher taxes, including a surcharge to avoid forced labor, not over the Gomburza priests’ agenda as such — the colonial administration used it as a pretext to seized the priests and condemn them for subversion.

Alas, Spain couldn’t manage to garrote away its subject peoples’ aspirations.

A bad end for Gomez, Burgos and Zamora was just the start for reform and independence agitation in the Philippines.

On this day..

Entry Filed under: 19th Century,Activists,Capital Punishment,Death Penalty,Execution,Famous,Garrote,History,Martyrs,Occupation and Colonialism,Philippines,Public Executions,Religious Figures,Spain,Strangled,Treason,Wrongful Executions

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  6. James Litton says:

    Why was Jose Rizal executed by musketry and not by the garrote like the martyrs GOMBURZA?

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  8. Percival O. Flores says:

    The anniversary of the three priests’ execution was on my mind yesterday. That’s why I greeted every cleric friend a Happy Gomburza day to commemorate the priests.

    It was said that Jose Rizal, our national hero (see Executed Today blog for December 30), was also inspired by the martyrdom of the three priests, particularly Fr. Jose Burgos, a mentor of his older brother Paciano.

    Today their memories are honored in the Philiippines. The office where I am working is located in P. Gomez St. in San Juan City, Metro Manila after Fr. Mariano Gomez. Adjacent streets are named P. Burgos and P. Zamora after Fr. Jose Burgos and Fr. Jacinto Zamora.

    Thank you for helping to commemorate the Gomburza’s sacrifices and martyrdom. .

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