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Ambeth Ocampo shows Jose Rizal's brain fragments kept in a bottle |

Arts and Culture

Ambeth Ocampo shows Jose Rizal's brain fragments kept in a bottle

Kristofer Purnell -
Ambeth Ocampo shows Jose Rizal's brain fragments kept in a bottle
Composite image of Philippine hero Jose Rizal and fragments of his brain kept in a bottle
Wikimedia Commons, Ambeth Ocampo via Facebook

MANILA, Philippines — Celebrated historian Ambeth Ocampo recently shared to the public a recent personal discovery about Jose Rizal — fragments of the hero's brain were kept in a bottle.

Ocampo posted a photo of the bottle containing Rizal's brain fragments on his personal Facebook account and has since gone viral.

The historian, who is well-known for his research and studies on Rizal, noted that most of the hero's remains are buried under the famous monument in Luneta.

One exception is a bit of his backbone, believed to be the post where the bullet hit Rizal when he was executed on December 30, 1896, which is preserved in nearby Fort Santiago.

"I did not know till recently that Rizal’s eldest sister Saturnina kept fragments of the hero’s brain in a bottle. I presume the fragments were formerly preserved in alcohol that has since dried up," said Ocampo, adding that he was still researching about the brain fragments.

Ocampo thanked the Ateneo de Manila University Archives' Director Dr. Francis Navarro and Britz Hamoy — a descendant of Don Mariano Balsomo Hamoy, Rizal's good friend while the hero was exiled in Dapitan — for leading him to the bottle.

Rizal was 35 years old when he was excuted by a Spanish firing squad in Luneta. Last June 19, the Philippines commemorated the 162nd anniversary of his birth.

RELATED: Are Jose Rizal and Crisostomo Ibarra one and the same? Professor answers

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