El Fili List of Characters
Basilio – The eldest of Sisa’s two sons, now an aspiring doctor whose medical education was being financed by Capitan Tiago. He is now at the point of graduation during the events in the novel.
Isagani – Poet and Basilio’s best friend; portrayed as emotional and reactive; Paulita Gomez’ boyfriend before being dumped for fellow student Juanito Pelaez Kabesang Tales – Telesforo Juan de Dios, a former cabeza de barangay (barangay head) of Sagpang, a barangay in San Diego’s neighboring town Tiani, who resurfaced as the feared Luzon bandit Matanglawin (Tagalog for “Hawkeye”); Don Custodio – Custodio de Salazar y Sanchez de Monteredondo, a famous “journalist” who was asked by the students about his decision for the Academia de Castellano.
In reality, he is quite an ordinary fellow who married a rich woman in order to be a member of Manila’s high society. Paulita Gomez – The girlfriend of Isagani and the niece of Dona Victorina, the old Indio who passes herself off as a Peninsular, who is the wife of the quack doctor Tiburcio de Espadana. In the end, she and Juanito Pelaez are wed, and she dumps Isagani, believing that she will have no future if she marries him. Macaraig – One of Isagani’s classmates at the University of Santo Tomas.
He is a rich student and serves as the leader of the students yearning to build the Academia de Castellano. Father Florentino – Isagani’s godfather, and a secular priest; was engaged to be married, but chose to be a priest after being pressured by his mother, the story hinting at the ambivalence of his decision as he chooses an assignment to a remote place, living in solitude near the sea. Juli – Juliana de Dios, the girlfriend of Basilio, and the youngest daughter of Kabesang Tales.
To claim her father from the bandits, she had to work as a maid under the supervision of Hermana Penchang. Eventually, she was freed but committed suicide after Father Camorra attempted to rape her. Juanito Pelaez – The son of Don Timoteo Pelaez, a Spanish businessman, he is also one of the members of Macaraig’s gang who wish to have the Academia de Castellano built. He is considered by Isagani as his rival to Paulita Gomez, the woman whom he fell in love and wed in the end. Placido Penitente considers him as a “good for nothing” classmate.
Dona Victorina – Victorina delos Reyes de Espadana, known in Noli Me Tangere as Tiburcio de Espadana’s cruel wife. She is the aunt of Paulita Gomez, and favors Juanito Pelaez than Isagani. Although of Indio ideology, she considers herself as one of the Peninsular. Father Camorra – The parish priest of Tiani, San Diego’s adjacent town. He has been desiring young women ever since. He nearly raped Juli causing the latter to commit suicide. Ben-Zayb – The pseudonym of Abraham Ibanez, a journalist who believes he is the “only” one thinking in the Philippines.
Ben-Zayb is an anagram of Ybanez, an alternate spelling of his name. Placido Penitente – A student of the University of Santo Tomas who was very intelligent and wise but did not want, if not only by his mother’s plea, to pursue his studies. He also controls his temper against Padre Millon, his physics teacher. Hermana Penchang – Sagpang’s rich pusakal (gambler). She offers Huli to be her maid so the latter can obtain money to free Kabesang Tales. Disbelieving of Huli and her close friends, she considers herself as an ally of the friars.
Tiburcio de Espadana – Don Tiburcio is Victorina de Espadana’s lame husband. He is currently on hiding with Father Florentino. Father Irene – Captain Tiago’s spiritual adviser. Although reluctant, he helped the students to establish the Academia de Castellano after being convinced by giving him a chestnut. The only witness to Captain Tiago’s death, he forged the last will and testament of the latter so Basilio will obtain nothing from the inheritance. Quiroga – A Chinese businessman who dreamed of being a consul for his country in the Philippines.
He hid Simoun’s weapons inside his house. Don Timoteo Pelaez – Juanito’s father. He is a rich businessmen and arranges a wedding for his son and Paulita. He and Simoun became business partners. Tandang Selo – Father of Kabesang Tales. He raised the sick and young Basilio after he left their house in Noli me Tangere. He died in an encounter on the mountains with his son Tales. Father Fernandez – The priest-friend of Isagani. He promised to Isagani that he and the other priests will give in to the students’ demands.
Sandoval – The vice-leader of Macaraig’s gang. A Spanish classmate of Isagani, he coerces his fellow classmates to lead alongside him the opening of the Spanish language academy. Hermana Bali – Another gambler in Tiani. She became Huli’s mother-figure and counselor; helped to release Kabesang Tales from the hands of bandits. Pasta – One of the great lawyers of mid-Hispanic Manila, opposed the students’ demands for a Spanish language academy Father Millon – The Physics teacher of the University of Santo Tomas.
He always becomes vindictive with Placido and always taunts him during class. Tadeo – Macaraig’s classmate. He, along with the other three members of their gang, supposedly posted the posters that “thanked” Don Custodio and Father Irene for the opening of the Academia de Castellano. Leeds – An American who holds stage plays starring decapitated heads; he is good friends with Simoun. Tano – Kabesang Tales’s elder son after his older sister, Lucia died in childhood. He is currently one of the Guardia Civil.
He then returned under the name Carolino after his exile in Caroline Islands. Pepay – Don Custodio’s supposed “girlfriend”. A dancer, she is always agitated of her “boyfriend”‘s plans. She seems to be a close friend of Macaraig. Gobernador General – The highest-ranking official in the Philippines during the Spanish colonial period, this unnamed character pretends that what he is doing is for the good of the Indios, the local citizens of the country, but in reality, he prioritizes the needs of his fellow Spaniards living in the country.
Pecson – Basilio’s classmate who had no idea on the happenings occurring around him. He suggested that they held the mock celebration at the panciteria. Father Hernando de la Sibyla- A Dominican friar introduced in Noli Me Tangere, now the vice-rector of the University of Santo Tomas. Father Bernardo Salvi- Former parish priest of San Diego, now the director and chaplain of the Santa Clara convent. Captain Tiago – Santiago delos Santos, although making a cameo appearance, Captain Tiago is Maria Clara’s stepfather and the foster-father to Basilio.
His health disintegrates gradually because of the opium he was forced to smoke given to him by Father Irene. Maria Clara – Introduced in Dr. Rizal’s first novel “Noli Me Tangere”. She was once the girlfriend of Crisostomo Ibarra but chose to became a nun despite Father Damaso’s(her real father) arguments. She eventually died, as witnessed by Basilio when he visited the convent of Santa Clara; this propelled Simoun to expedite his plans for revolution.