The cause of Italian unity evoked a strong, sympathetic response in the Anglo-American literary community. Prominent among these were two expatriate figures resident in Italy, Elizabeth Barrett Browning, the English poet, and Margaret Fuller, the American writer who had married Angelo Ossoli.
Elizabeth Barrett Browning and her husband Robert settled in Florence and sympathized with the Italian nationalist aspirations of many of its inhabitants, a view representative of the majority of British residents in northern Italy.
The American writer Margaret Fuller, married to an Italian aristocrat, Angelo Ossoli, resided in Rome under the 1848 republic and supported Giuseppe Mazzini. At Home and Abroad incorporates her first-hand observations of the period. Of Garibaldi's retreat from Rome on July 2, 1849, she wrote:
The wife of Garibaldi followed him on horseback. He himself was distinguished by a white tunic; his look was entirely that of a hero of the middle ages,--his face, still young, for the excitements of his life, though so many, have all been youthful, and there is no fatigue upon his brow or cheek.... Hard was the heart, stony and seared the eye, that had no tear for that moment.
In 1858, at the invitation of Cavour, Garibaldi accepted the rank of major general in the Piedmontese army and assumed responsibility for leadership of an army of volunteers drawn from the non-Piedmontese regions of the Italian peninsula. Following the outbreak of war (April 1859), Garibaldi'sCacciatori delle Alpi ("Alpine huntsmen") captured Varese and Como and, at war's end, stood on the borders of the Austrian South Tyrol. The frontispiece portrait shows Garibaldi in the unusual formality of his major general's dress uniform.
Following the defeat of the Austrians by the allied French and Piedmontese armies in the 1859 war, the province of Lombardy was ceded to Piedmont. A subsidiary consequence of the peace--Piedmont's cession to France of Nice, Garibaldi's birthplace--enraged the patriot, who appeared in the Piedmontese parliament to denounce this act.
Kossuth, principal Hungarian leader in the 1848-49 revolution, was the only European nationalist leader of comparable popularity to Garibaldi in western Europe and the Americas. Unlike Garibaldi, his subsequent career was anticlimactic and unsuccessful. In 1859, as the Austrian war drew to a close, he tried to take advantage of hostilities to raise a Hungarian legion and invade Austria's Dalmatian territories. This aim was terminated by the Villafranca armistice of July 11, 1859. This is the rare first edition of Kossuth's pamphlet on the Italian situation.
Copy, in a secretarial hand, of an letter addressed "Mio Caro Panizzi", evidently addressed to Antonio Panizzi (Sir Anthony Panizzi), Librarian of the British Museum.