Today is the 113rd birth anniversary of Manuel Quezon. He died August 1 in 1944, weeks short of what was to be his 66th birthday.
August 19 is also the day another significant event in our history took place. The discovery of the secret society of men called Katipunan by a Tondo friar. It marks the beginning of the armed struggle for independence. Quezon fought under Aguinaldo during the revolution (The two would later contest the first ever presidential seat in an election).
Many consider Quezon as the greatest president we ever had. Aside from his distinguished long service as a policymaker, he became a wartime president. One could just imagine the stress his office had to deal with during the war.
The surname Quezon, like Ticzon, Dizon, Quizon, Tizon, Peczon, Sanzon are surnames of China men who converted into Catholicism. I wonder if “zón” was added to their native names to describe them or distinguish them. Like panzón (potbellied), maganzón (lazy) and tizón (firebrand or coal).
Some say that the initial letters of these surnames came from Chinese numbers (yī , èr, sān, sì, wǔ…). Upon embarking from their ships they would be registered under these names that evolved out of circumstance.
Maybe if we closely study Spanish we could find out the meaning of our names. That’s not such a bad thing, is it?
Happy Quezon day.
August 19 is also celebrated in Angono as “Angono Day”.