SIMPLICIO DEL ROSARIO

(1866-     )

Jurist and Moral Critic

 

 

“We have been like a man who sports about in a limousine when all he really can afford is a carromata.”

  This stinging remark made in the late 1930’s, yet still appropriate for the present, may well be what Simplicio del Rosario will be best remembered by.

 

  Born on June 24, 1866 to Tiburcio del Rosario and Teresa Sempio in Bulacan, Bulacan. Del Rosario took up his primary studies at a public school in Bulacan. In 18889, he went to Manila and enrolled at the Ateneo de manila for his bachelor’s degree. There, he received the title of surveyor. He was already working when he pursued law at the University of Santo Tomas, finishing the course in 1891.

 

After graduating from UST, he practiced law in Bulacan for a short time. Entering the government service, he served as acting fiscal and registers of deeds of Leyte. During the revolutionary period, he was made a delegate to the Malolos Congress and law professor at the university established by Aguinaldo in Tambobong (now Malabon). Once the Americans had established their rule  in the country, he was designated Register of Deeds of the north district of Manila, a position he held until his appointment as a judge of the Court of Land Registration on January 1, 1903.

 

In 1910, he was appointed judge of the fifth judicial district, comprising the provinces of Rizal and Bulacan. The following year, he was transferred to the Manila Court of First Instance, serving there until his retirement in 1931.

 

Judge Del Rosario was intensely patriotic. He was a man of his convictions and was quite outspoken. Labeled as a miser for his refusal to contribute to the independence fund, he defended his refusal by saying, “The milk of human kindness flows freely from the heart, not forced.” He showed his generosity in the case of a young girl who left home because her mother refused to give her money to see a movie; just so the girl would go home and be reconciled with her mother, he gave her money himself.

 

Del Rosario was known to be a moral crusader, especially against obscene motion pictures and suggestive vaudeville. His crusading spirit extended against corruption in the government. He denounced lavish fiesta celebrations and public dancing as responsible for retarding progress, and wrote of the many failing of Filipinos, particularly what would later be known as “colonial mentality.”

 

“We should gain much if we could inculcate a strong and profound love of country in the minds of our young people from their tenderest years.” He once wrote, “Then there could not arise the case of our young men, who, upon returning from the United States and other foreign countries after a few years’ stay there, have tried to be everything but Filipinos.”

 

Del Rosario was married to Mrs. Juana V. del Rosario. They had seven children, Teresa, Carmen, Dolores, Jose, Paz, Manuel and Luis.

 

His death is unrecorded

 

 

 

Mayrene Louise U. Baylon

 (0917) 3869310

may_jamn@yahoo.com

 

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