Anita de Jesus Ribeiro da Silva di Garibaldi (1821-1849) was born in Brazil. She is famous for her association with Italy’s Risorgimento war hero Giuseppe Garibaldi (1807-1882). He was instrumental in the struggle to unify Italy starting in the 1850s.
Janiculum Hill was a bloody battlefield during the struggle for Italian unity in 1849 when Garibaldi defended Rome against the French on April 30th. Busts of 1000 volunteer heros line the road to the Garibaldi equestrian statue on the hilltop.
Giuseppe Garibaldi and Ana Maria (Anita) met in Brazi. She left her husband, Manuel Duarte Aguiar in 1839 to accompany Giuseppe Garibaldi. Upon seeing her for the first time, Garibaldi is said to have muttered, “You must be mine.”
They were married in 1841. She gave birth to four children and died while sick and pregnant with her fifth child. She was actively engaged in war battles with Garibaldi in the south of Brazil as well as in other South American countries. Anita Garibaldi was a skilled horsewoman and could handle a weapon. Anita and her husband took part in the defense of Rome, which was under siege by French troops. Advancing French and Austrian troops pursued them following a retreat from Rome. Anita Garibaldi died in her husband’s arms.
Dr. EveAnn Lovero writes Travel Guides to Italy and Vino Con Vista Travel Guides can be purchased at these sites