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Garibaldi, Giuseppe

Garibaldi, Giuseppe

Garibaldi, Giuseppe, 1807-82, Italian patriot and soldier, a leading figure in the Risorgimento. He remains perhaps the most popular of all Italian heroes of the Risorgimento, and a great revolutionary hero in the Western world.

In South America

Garibaldi was born at Nice and as a youth entered the Sardinian navy. Under the influence of Mazzini he became involved in an unsuccessful republican plot and fled (1835) to South America. There he gained his first experience in guerrilla warfare. He served (1836-42) the state of Rio Grande do Sul in its rebellion against Brazil and fought (1842-46) in the Uruguayan civil war, winning fame for his heroism. In Brazil he met Anita Ribeiro da Silva, whom he married in 1842.

European Campaigns

When revolution swept over Europe in 1848, Garibaldi found a new theater of action. Though a convinced republican, he joined the forces of King Charles Albert of Sardinia in the war against Austria. After the Sardinian defeat he went to Rome (1849) and, at the head of some improvised forces, fought brilliantly for Mazzini's short-lived Roman republic against the superior French forces intervening for Pope Pius IX. During his spectacular retreat across central Italy, his wife died. He was refused asylum by the king of Sardinia and went to the United States.

Garibaldi resumed his seafaring life, but in 1854 he returned to Italy and soon bought part of the island of Caprera, N of Sardinia. By then he had renounced the dream of an Italian republic and gave his support to Cavour, publicly declaring that the monarchy as represented by Victor Emmanuel II should be the basis of Italian unity. Garibaldi's popularity won many of Mazzini's republican followers to the monarchist cause. Garibaldi took part in the war of 1859 against Austria. After the Treaty of Villafranca di Verona he violently attacked Cavour and denounced the cession of Savoy and his native Nice to France.

In 1860, with Victor Emmanuel's connivance, Garibaldi embarked on the crowning enterprise of his life—the conquest of the kingdom of the Two Sicilies. With 1,000 volunteers, the Red Shirts, he landed (May, 1860) in Sicily, which had rebelled against Francis II, king of the Two Sicilies, and conquered the island in a spectacularly daring campaign. He then crossed to the mainland, took Naples, and won a decisive battle on the Volturno River. Mazzini wanted to make liberated S Italy a republic, and the populace acclaimed Garibaldi as ruler, but Garibaldi himself remained loyal to Victor Emmanuel. After meeting the king at Teano, near Naples, he relinquished his conquests to Sardinia and retired to Caprera. Shortly afterward (1861) Victor Emmanuel was proclaimed king of a united Italy.

Only part of the Papal States, including Rome, remained outside the new kingdom. In 1862, Garibaldi led a volunteer corps against Rome, but the king, fearing international intervention, sent an Italian army that defeated Garibaldi at Aspromonte. Garibaldi was given a pardon.

In the Austro-Prussian War of 1866 he commanded a volunteer unit, and in 1867 he was defeated by French and papal forces at Mentana while attempting once again to capture Rome. In the Franco-Prussian War of 1870-71 he commanded a group of French and Italian volunteers and won a battle near Dijon (1871). Garibaldi was elected to the Italian parliament in 1874, but his political career was undistinguished.

Bibliography

See his autobiography (tr. 1889); biography by D. Mack Smith (1956, repr. 1969); G. M. Trevelyan, Garibaldi's Defence of the Roman Republic (1907, repr. 1971), Garibaldi and the Thousand (1909, repr. 1948), and Garibaldi and the Making of Italy (1911, repr. 1948); L. Riall, Garibaldi: Invention of a Hero (2007).

Giuseppe Garibaldi, 1866.

(born July 4, 1807, Nice, French Empire—died June 2, 1882, Caprera, Italy) Italian patriot and soldier of the Risorgimento. He came under the influence of Giuseppe Mazzini in 1834, took part in a failed mutiny intended to provoke a republican revolution in Piedmont, and escaped to France. He lived in exile in South America (1836–48) and learned guerrilla warfare tactics during liberation attempts in Brazil and Uruguay. He returned to Italy in 1848 with his small band of “Red Shirts” and fought in Milan in the war of independence against Austria. After Pope Pius IX fled Rome (1848), Garibaldi for a while defended the city from the French when they attempted to reinstate papal rule. His bold retreat through central Italy made him a well-known figure. He lived in exile again until 1854, and in 1859 he led an army in another war against Austria. In 1860, with no government backing, he raised an army of about 1,000 men and attacked Sicily; by the end of his campaign, he commanded 30,000 men, with whom he seized Naples. He handed all of southern Italy over to Victor Emmanuel II and hailed him as the first king of a united Italy. With secret support from Victor Emmanuel, he led unsuccessful campaigns into the Papal States in 1862 and 1867.

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Garibaldi is a town in Rio Grande do Sul, southern Brazil. It has a population of 28,714 people, most of them of Italian descent. The city is famous for its wine production. The name Garibaldi is an homage to the Italian revolutionary Giuseppe Garibaldi and his Brazilian wife, Anita Garibaldi. Garibaldi is the middle city of three on the Maria Fumaça tourist train line. The other two cities are Carlos Barbosa and Bento Gonçalves. Visitors stop on the Garibaldi platform to enjoy gaúcho music and taste the cheese, grape juice and wine of the region.

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