“Learn a bit about the National Hero of the Philippines… “
The Rizal Monument is a prominent structure that is identical with the Philippines as a country. The monument is found at the Rizal Park also known as Bagumbayan or Luneta. The monument commemorates the Philippines’ national hero, Jose Protacio Rizal.
The mausoleum consists of a standing bronze sculpture of Rizal with an obelisk backdrop set on a pedestal. The remains of the martyr were interred after it was exhumed from the Paco Cemetery. The monument’s perimeter is continually guarded by the Philippine Marine Corps’ Marine Security and Escort Group. It is estimated that 100 meters west of the monument is the exact location where the Filipino martyr was executed through firing squad. There are life-size dioramas depicting his final moments.
The Rizal Monument was planned and constructed during the American colonization in the Philippines during the early 20th century. On September 28, 1901 the United States Philippine Commission approved Act No 243 granting the use of Luneta to commemorate the hero. This same act also stated that a monument should be built to bear the statue and the remains of Rizal. A design competition was spearheaded by the Rizal monument committee in 1905-1907. Sculptors from Europe and the United States submitted entries. Carlos Nicoli of Carrara, Italy won the first-prize of the contest with his scaled plaster model titled Al Martir de Bagumbayan however due to some controversies, the contract was awarded to second-
placer Swiss sculptor Richard Kissling with his Motto Stella.
The shrine was unveiled on December 30, 1913 during the 17th death anniversary of Rizal. The remains were interred in the monument consisting of his bones. Also inscribed in the memorial plaque is the poet’s popular poem Mi Ultimo Adios.
The Rizal Monument and the Rizal Park are administered by the National Parks Development Committee, an attached agency of the Department of Tourism. The park is frequented by families, groups and tourists daily.