THE ITALIAN PHILHELLENES
The Italians were the third most populous group of Philhellenes who participated in the Greek War of Independence. We have information on 137 volunteers, of whom about forty lost their lives in Greece. Most had been forced to flee their homeland and live in exile after a failed attempt to secure a constitution by the monarchs of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies and Piedmont.
The Greek revolution was a good opportunity for these veterans to advance the cause of Italian liberation through the Greek struggle. Giacomuzzi Pasquale had thirty years of service in various European armies but bravely defended the fortified islet of Vasiladi and survived for four hours in the lagoon while swimming back to the city when his position was overrun by the Ottomans. His luck continued until the end of the siege and he survived the Exodus.
Two other Italians, who participated in the defence of Messolonghi, were less fortunate. Rasieri contributed to the improvement of the city’s fortifications but was killed during a night raid, while a man called Vincenzo served at the Korai bastion and died in August 1825.