Flavio Zaragoza Cano

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Flavio Zaragoza Cano (1892-1994), the "Prince of Visayan poets", was a lawyer and journalist.



He decided to study law while he was helping in the campaign of his teacher, Manuel Locsin. He sailed to Manila in 1910 where he enrolled at the Escuela de Derecho and later at the Colegio de Derecho.

He worked as bookkeeper in the Farmacia Filipina in Binondo and at the same time taught school at the Colegio de Mercantil (now known as National University) in order to support himself and finance his studies.

His journalistic career started when he contributed to the magazine Renacimiento Filipino. He was a writer for La Vanguradia and eventually became director for Heraldo Bicol, the magazine Butot Pague, and for two newspapers published in Ilonggo, La Nueva Fuerza and El Heraldo.

He gave up his studies in 1914 to marry Josefa Francisco, and transferred to Albay where he became manager and part-owner of a printing press and a newspaper, Heraldo Bicolandia. In 1916, he managed a bazaar in Legaspi and also the Imprinta Monserrat in that town.

In 1917, he organized the first labor union in the Bicol region. As a labor leader, he settled the labor trouble in the steamship Vapor Poizat.

His hometown of Cabatuan called him to act as municipal secretary in 1922; then he served in the capacity for the municipality of Dumangas, Iloilo, from 1923 to 1927.

Although he was not able to finish his study of law, he was given a license as notary public, which professor he practiced from 1923-1931. After his stint as municipal secretary of Dumangas, he became the private secretary of Senator Jose M. Arroyo.

His government service was unbroken from 1923 to 1934 when, after passing the Civil Service Examination, he was appointed as interpreter in the Iloilo Court of First Instance. He served in this capacity up to 1935.


He was a recipient of the Premio Zobel in 1929 for his poem Las Rimas (The Rhymes).


  • Brillantes, Lourdes. 81 Years of Premio Zobel: A Legacy of Philippine Literature in Spanish. Philippines:Filipinas Heritage Library, 2006.

[[Category:Premio Zobel Awardees|Cano, Flavio Zaragoza]



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