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Giuseppe Mazzini
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    (June 22, 1805-March 10, 1872)
    Born in Genoa, Italy
    Nationalist leader
    Founder of Young Italy (1832)
    Champion of the movement for Italian unity ('Risorgimento')
    Helped define the modern European movement for popular Democracy in a Republican state
    Organized uprisings in Tuscany, Abruzzi, Sicily, Piedmont, and Liguria (1831-34)
    Sentenced to death in absentia (1833
    Fought in the First Italian War of Independence (1848-49)
    Wrote 'Is it Revolt or a Revolution?' 'Warfare Against the Man,' 'The Duties of Man,' and 'On Nationality'
    Inspired socio-political terms Mazzinianism and the Mazzinian Conception
    Historians tend to observe that, while his temperament was fine, he had the 'single-minded mentality of a zealot.'
    He grew up with a mother convinced that he was destined to become the next Messiah.
    He had a lifelong obsession with creating 'a Third Rome,' which would 'liberate all of Europe.'
    He's a national icon, but barely ever ventured to any part of Italy beyond Tuscany his whole life.
    He also spent a majority of his life post-1833 outside of Italy, masterminding rebellions out of a series of cheap boarding houses (first in Switzerland, and later London).
    He clashed with nearly every major leader in the movement, including Nicola Fabrizi and Carlo Piscani.
    He was criticized by his peers for neglecting the peasant class, whom many deemed the heart of the Revolutionary class.
    The tensions reached a climax after he refused to support the Sicily uprising of 1837, prompting Fabrizi to break from Young Italy to found a direct competitor; the Italian Legion of Malta.
    He was reluctant to help Margaret Fuller and her husband flee to London after the failure of the 1849 revolt, despite their having remained loyal (they ended up chartering an unseaworthy vessel which sank 50 miles off of Fire Island).
    He lost much political capital among his peers due to the failure of virtually every insurrection he organized.
    He returned to Sicily one last time to lead a failed rebellion against King Victor Emmanuel II, in 1870. He was released, but died an outdated relic of the movement.
    Klemens von Metternich called him 'the most influential revolutionary in Europe.'
    He was an outspoken advocate for Women's Rights.
    He originally had ambitions to be either a literary critic or a novelist.
    He founded the first Italy-wide political party, breaking from the tradition of 'Revolutionary' secret societies.
    At its peak in 1833, Young Italy's membership numbered nearly 60,000 supporters.
    He was mentor to Giuseppe Garibaldi (they grew apart after Garibaldi chose to pledge his allegiance to the House of Savoy).
    He spent three months in prison after being betrayed to the police by a comrade.
    When he was released, uprisings broke out in Parma, Modena and the papal states (Austrian troops put it down, promptly executing its leaders before Mazzini had a chance to join).
    He believed in God, but was critical of organized religion, particularly the Catholic Church (this alienated him considerably, even among his peers).
    He criticized the treatment of the poor in European society, but his public disagreements with Karl Marx rendered him unpopular even with the Socialist class.
    His legacy was appropriated by fascist writer Gentile and later Mussolini (who claimed to have read everything he ever wrote), but there's nothing in his writings endorsing their brand of 'black shirt' fascism.
    But his writings did influence the political thought of a number of important leaders, including Gandhi, John Stuart Mill, Ben-Gurion, Nehru, and Sun Yat-Sen (they also served as a blueprint for Woodrow Wilson's and David Lloyd George's post-WWI 'Fourteen Points').

Credit: BoyWiththeGreenHair

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