Just giving you guys a head’s up that Aug 29, 2022 (Monday) is a regular holiday in the Philippines. A “regular” holiday is like a bank holiday in the US.

The holiday is National Heroes Day in the Philippines. It’s celebrated every last Monday of August and was enacted in 1931. The day was meant to commemorate the Cry of Pugad Lawin, the first revolt that kicked off the 1896 Philippine Revolution against the Spanish Empire.

What is the Cry of Pugad Lawin?

Here’s the story. Pugad Lawin (trans: Eagle’s Nest) is a place in Quezon City. It’s said that in August 1896, a group of Filipino revolutionaries (Katipuneros) gathered for a meeting to discuss starting a revolution against Spain.

During the meeting, as a symbol of their defiance, the Katipuneros tore up their cedulas (community tax certificates) and cried out  “Viva la Independencia Filipina” (Long live the Philippines).

This was a big thing because these cedulas were essentially IDs, given by Spain as receipts when you pay your taxes. They refused to recognize Spain’s authority.

Technically, this wasn’t the first time Filipinos revolted against Spain. But this was the first organized revolt with the clear goal of independence, not just reform. Born from the Cry of Pugad Lawin was the formation of an insurgent government, a constitution, and organized attacks against Spain from different parts of the Philippines.

Why is it celebrated on the last Monday of August? Well, nobody remembers exactly when this happened. Those present gave conflicting accounts of when it happened. The only thing they agreed on was that it happened in August 1896. They just settled on the last Monday of August to make it easier.

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