Remembering Dr. Mariano Vivencio Del Rosario

Benjamin Vallejo Jr.

By: Benjamin Vallejo Jr. | Squeeze Opinion | Published July 18, 2017 | Updated August 16, 2017


This famous La Independencia staff photo (1898) shows the first two Filipino scientists to complete research doctorates in science: Doctors Antonio Luna and Mariano Vivencio del Rosario. Luna was the first Filipino to receive a research doctorate in science.

Dr. del Rosario (1869-1943), standing behind General Luna, was the second Filipino to receive a research doctorate in science (1893). His doctoral thesis was on the toxins produced by a decaying human corpse. This was published in a scientific journal a year later.

Dr. del Rosario was not an active part of the propaganda unlike the more senior Luna since he prioritized his scientific studies. A close friend and colleague of Luna, he supported the Revolution as a satirical writer for Luna’s La Independencia. During the American colonial period, he occupied Luna’s old post as Municipal Chemist.

He then studied for a Master of Science in Chemistry in Chicago and upon his return became one of the first Filipino chemistry professors. He taught biochemistry at the University of the Philippines (UP) College of Medicine. He revalidated his doctorate from the University of Santo Tomas (UST) and received the Doctor of Medicine (MD) from UST in 1916. He did a Chemistry postdoctorate in Hamburg. He retired as the first dean of the UP College of Pharmacy. He died in 1943.

La Independencia staff photo:

FRONT (L to R): Fernando Ma. Guerrero (Fulvio Gil), Joaquin Luna, Cecilio Apostol (Catulo) | MIDDLE (L to R): General Antonio Luna (Taga-Ilog), Florentina Arellano, Rose Sevilla, Salvador del Rosario (X or Juan Tagalo) | BACK (L to R): Mariano del Rosario (Tito-Tato), Clemente Jose Zulueta (M. Kaun), Jose C. Abreu (Kaibigan), Epifanio de los Santos (G. Solon), Rafael Palma (Hapon or Dapithapon).

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