Synopsis of Noli Me Tangere

Incoming email shows that students need the synopsis of the novel Noli Me Tangere (Touch Me Not) by Jose Rizal. If you want more, here are Chapter Summaries of the Noli Me Tangere. Anyway, here's a quick summary of the entire Noli to help save you time.

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Crisostomo Ibarra is the heir of a wealthy clan. He returns to the Philippines after studying for seven years abroad. He hears news/gossip about the death of his father, Don Rafael Ibarra. Don Rafael was sent to prison in connection with the death of a tax collector. Since Don Rafael stopped receiving holy communion for a long time, he was refused a Catholic/Christian burial by Padre Damaso, the parish priest of their town.

Crisostomo (let's just call him Ibarra from hereon) sees the lack of progress in his town and decides to build a school to teach and prepare his townspeople. Tandang Tacio (the old philosopher) notes that there have been many attempts to build a school in the past, but all these had failed. Padre Salvi opposes the plan because he is secretly worried that the school project will threaten the power he wields over their town.

Ibarra almost gets killed while he is laying the cornerstone of the school, but Elias saved him. Elias is the mysterious fellow who also saved Ibarra previously.

With so many powerful enemies, Ibarra eventually gets implicated in a staged revolution, and is hunted down by the guardia civil. Maria Clara, Ibarra's sweetheart, unwittingly adds to Ibarra's woes when she switches Ibarra's letter with another letter that reveals her true nature.

The guardia civil catch up with Ibarra, and drizzle him and Elias with bullets near the lake. Ibarra survives and buries Elias in the forest owned by the clan of Ibarra. The guardia civil think Ibarra drowned and died in the lake and promptly leave the scene.

Maria Clara thinks Ibarra really died, gets depressed, and enters the nunnery. She does not follow the advice of Padre Damaso to marry Linares.

Related Link: Synopsis of El Filibusterismo

[ First posted on 01/29/2004 by Manuel Viloria ]

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