Noli Me Tangere

Noli Me Tangere

Noli Me Tangere Chapter 52 Summary & Analysis

Summary
Analysis
That night the moon is blotted out by clouds. Three figures speak inside the cemetery, standing behind the gate. Two of them are identifiable as Társilo and Bruno by remarks they make about their father, who has been murdered by the Civil Guard. The third person answers their questions about the impending attack, assuring them that Ibarra has organized twenty people to take part in the raid. The three figures go quiet upon seeing a shadow approach the cemetery gate. This new person unhooks the gate while periodically looking behind himself, as if he’s been followed. Sure enough, another, larger shadow trails behind, slipping into darkness every time the other looks over his shoulder. The first figure opens the gate and comes upon the three people, telling them, “Scatter! I’ve been followed! You’ll have your arms tomorrow and it will be at night. The signal is: ‘Long live Don Crisóstomo!’ Now, go!”
Again, Rizal slowly reveals the plot against Ibarra, in which the young protagonist is framed to look like the ringleader of a violent uprising against the town of San Diego. By telling Társilo and Bruno that Ibarra is at the center of this plan, the real mastermind—at this point unnamed—ensures that Ibarra’s name and reputation is negatively affected by the attack.
Themes
Colonialism, Religion, and Power Theme Icon
The first three figures disperse, but the new arrival stays, hiding in a hollow space underneath the cemetery gate and waiting to see who’s following him. Just then, rain starts to fall and the follower escapes the droplets by stepping under the gate. The two men find one another and make up stories about what they’re doing, ultimately both deciding to say they’ve come to the cemetery at night to play a card game against the dead. One of them points out that the spirits won’t appear if there are two living souls present, so the men decide to play a card game to decide who will stay and who will leave. They light a match, and though they don’t recognize one another, Rizal identifies the first figure as Lucas and the second as Elías. Elías loses the game and leaves.
Lucas’s involvement in the plan to attack the military barracks once again reminds readers of Father Salví’s potential affiliation with the entire ordeal, since Salví’s suspicious behavior was evident when Lucas first came to him complaining of Ibarra’s unwillingness to pay for his brother’s death. In this way, the town’s most powerful man is vicariously implicated in this insurrection.
Themes
Colonialism, Religion, and Power Theme Icon
Two Civil Guard members patrol the dark and rainy streets, talking with one another to pass the time. “They say Elías is in town,” one remarks. “The ensign says the one who grabs him will get no whippings for three months.” They then come upon Lucas and question him. One of the guards notices Lucas’s scar and asks the other if Elías is said to have a similar facial marking. They let him go and then find Elías walking the streets only minutes later. They seize him and ask him where he’s going. “After a man who beat up and threatened my brother,” Elías says. “He has a scar on his face and his name is Elías…” The guards look at one another in surprise before rushing off to where they last saw Lucas.
In this scene, Elías is able to use his own isolation to his advantage. Indeed, he has been so estranged from society that nobody even knows what he looks like. This enables him to trick the Civil Guard members into pursuing Lucas while he sets off on his own.
Themes
Isolation Theme Icon