Thursday, June 3, 2010

The young Epifanio

"Of an oval and perfectly symmetrical face, a robust strong neck, an aquiline nose..." 
-Rafael Palma

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

The First Filipino Academician: Epifanio de los Santos

First Filipino of native parentage to be admitted in the Spanish Royal Academy of Language on the basis of a single work: "Literatura Tagala, " a brief survey of Tagalog literature. Even before he wrote history, he was already a member of Spanish Royal Academy of History upon the recommendation of Marcelino Menendez Pelayo, the great Spanish historian-philosoper. The academicos of Madrid greatly admired reading his early works also have elected him as member of the Royal Spanish Academy of Literature. This versatile and talented scholar was also a bibliophile reputed to have a collection in his private library of three-century old books with movable types published in the Philippines as early as 1602,  a holographic pamphlet that saw print in 1593 before the movable types, Tagalog-Japanese dictionary printed in the Philippines around 1614 or 1615 and  revolutionary documents and  manuscripts.  His copy of the book printed in Binondo in the year 1606 was known to have been at the Vienna Library before the Great War. His most valuable books and manuscripts are, naturally, kept in a fireproof safe. Along certain lines, his Filipiniana collection was rated the best and the largest  in the world.