One of the most famous and mythical stories in history is that between Giuseppe and Anita Garibaldi. The event that changed their lives took place on July 21, 1839. While he was in South America to fight alongside the separatists of the Rio Grande, Garibaldi, during an inspection in the small town of Laguna, met a girl with long black hair.

Garibaldi innamorato
Garibaldi in LOVE!

Despite the fact she was already married, she fell head over heels in love with the dashing Italian general. Immediately the two began a passionate love affair, that also extended to the political: both were imbued with the same ideas of patriotic liberty. They fought together, side by side, both suffering hunger, and pain.

Photo Credit: Film Garabaldi

But the love story didn’t go very well for them. Anita was a terribly jealous woman and made Garibaldi’s life a living nightmare. She couldn’t leave him alone for a minute and even followed him into battle and lived in the encampments with the other soldiers. But in her defense, she had reason to be jealous of her husband, as Garibaldi was a tad bit of a womanizer. Unfortunately, she died in 1849 pregnant and sick with malaria during a military retreat. There are several stories surrounding her death. Some say Garibaldi shot her, she was quite a nag. Others said his beloved died in his arms as he cradled her. No one really knows for sure! The truth went to her grave. She was hastily buried as the army moved out and her grave was later indeed dug up by a dog. Only the dog knows for sure.


The song “Garibaldi in love” was written and performed by Sergio Caputo. He is a writer, composer, and guitarist. He began in Europe with the success of his first LP released in 1983. He combines a style of jazz with Latin pop. He now splits his time between California and Italy.

Why did he write a song with Garibaldi as the theme? The singer says: The music was decidedly Latino and therefore the Italian text needed a story that was also heavily Latino. I thought and thought and thought and then, boom! Garibaldi. But not the Garibaldi of history books or monuments. Instead, the adventurer Garibaldi, the pirate, the womanizer. The Garibaldi that stopped in South America for the love of revolution…”

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