A marble tablet stands out on the facade of the historic Palazzo Varisano in my hometown of Enna, Sicily. On it are engraved the names of my fellow citizens who participated in the war for the unification of Italy.

To unify Italy it was necessary to topple the Bourbon kingdom which ruled over all of southern Italy. For this purpose, the patriot Giuseppe Garibaldi on May 5, 1860 set sail from Quarto, a town near Genoa, with two ships bound for Sicily, on board of which there were 1089 patriots.

During the crossing, arguments arose among the members of the expedition. The splinter group was disembarked in Talamone, a town in Tuscany. After that, only 752 patriots landed in Sicily.

Could seven hundred and fifty-two men, albeit valiant, ever defeat the mighty Bourbon army? Of course not!

When the two ships arrived in Sicily, immediately 10,000 young Sicilians joined Garibaldi and all together defeated the Bourbons.

This is the historical truth: without the contribution of the Sicilians, the unity of Italy would have been impossible.

Ettore Grillo author of these books:

– November 2: The Day of the Dead in Sicily

– A Hidden Sicilian History

– The Vibrations of Words

– Travels of the Mind

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