Lithograph of the Battle of Calatafimi


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Battle of Calatafimi

15 May 1860. Having left Salemi, the Thousand headed for Calatafimi. Here they encountered the Bourbon general Landi at the head of 2,300 men camped on the hill of Pianto Romano. The Bourbons attacked at 10 o’clock in the morning.

Garibaldi’s army forced the enemy to retreat, but on more than one occasion found themselves in such a critical position that Bixio asked Garibaldi if they should withdraw. To which Garibaldi is said to have shouted: “Bixio, here we make Italy or we die!”.

The Bourbons retreated at sunset and at dawn on 16 May the red shirts entered Calatafimi.