Jose Antonio Raon

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José Antonio Raón y Gutiérrez was the Governor-General of the Philippines from 6 July 1765 to July 1770.[1] It was during his term that the Jesuits were expelled from the archipelago.


Raón was born in Navarre, Spain.[2] Before he was appointed as Governor-General, he was a field marshal of the Spanish army and served as the governor of Panama.[3]

He started his term as governor-general on 6 July 1765.[4] During his term, he initiated educational reforms, which include increasing the number of teachers and promoting religious education in Spanish.[5]

In October 1766, French astronomer Le Gentil arrived at Manila to make observations on the approaching transit of Venus. He noted that Raón was one of the most shrewd governors of Manila. The latter even showed him “presents” from French ship officers despite the standing prohibition of foreign trade in the country.[6] He implemented the order of King Charles III to expel the Jesuits from the archipelago in 1768.[7] Raón was condemned for revealing to the Jesuits, in exchange for money, the news of their expulsion.

Also in 1768, he repromulgated the acuerdo’s “Ordinances of Good Government.” According to the said agreement, the governors’ residencias should be dispensed. But the Council of the Indies disapproved Raón’s stand, fined him, and ordered Simón de Anda y Salazar to take the residencias of Arandia, Espeleta, Rojo, Villacorta, and Raón.[8]

Anda was tasked to commence legal proceedings against Raón. Many charges were brought against Raón but he tried to make excuses for his conduct.

Raon Street in Quiapo, which is known for selling entertainment and music-related finds, was named after him.


  1. Carlos Quirino, Old Manila, ed. María Eloísa G. Parco-de Castro, 2nd ed. (Quezon City: Vibal Foundation, 2016), 294.
  2. Quirino, Old Manila, 294.
  3. Quirino, Old Manila, 294.
  4. Quirino, Old Manila, 294.
  5. Quirino, Old Manila, 294.
  6. The Kahimyang Project, "Today in Philippine history, July 6, 1765, Jose Raon arrived in Manila to become Governor General," accessed 19 January 2021,
  7. Quirino, Old Manila, 294.
  8. Charles Henry Cunningham, The Audiencia in the Spanish Colonies As Illustrated by the Audiencia of Manila (1583-1800)(Berkeley: University of California Press, 1919), accessed 19 January 2021,



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