Rizal who has been known for his strong criticisms against the Spaniards wouldn’t have written all his essays and articles using his real name. He used the pen names Laong Laan and Dimasalang in many of his writings.
The pen name of Dr. Jose Rizal when he was a contributor of poems and articles for the Spanish newspaper “La Solidaridad” was Laong Laan which was the name of a railway station in Manila. Others who contributed to La Solidaridad and used pen names were Marcelo H. del Pilar who used Plaridel, Mario Ponce used the aliases Naning, Kalipulo or Tigbalang, Antonio Luna as Taga Ilog and Jose Maria Panganiban who used Jomapa. “La Solidaridad” is an organization created in Spain and issued a newspaper of the same name published in Barcelona, Spain. Jose Rizal’s cousin named Galicano Apacible headed the organization.
Dr. Jose Rizal also used the pen name Dimasalang when he served as a correspondent of the same Spanish newspaper La Solidaridad. Rizal also wrote a literary work in Spain titled “Amor Patrio” meaning love of country. The piece was included in “Diarong Tagalog” which was a daily newspaper released in Manila. Jose Rizal used the pseudonym or pen name Laong Laan for this article to hide his identity. Rizal also used the pseudonym “May Pagasa” when he transferred to Madrid and became a member of Freemasonry.
La Solidaridad was an organization to inform Spain of the needs of her colony, the Philippines and also to develop relationship between the two countries. La Solidaridad is a biweekly newspaper which not only includes articles and essays regarding the cultural, economic, political, and social situation of the country, but also current local and foreign news.