In 1834 Dr. Luigi Grossi – a surgeon at the Poor People's Hospital in Varese- was suspected by the Austrian police of being a member of the Giovine Italia and for that reason in the same year was dismissed from the office of Town councillor. It is likely the suspicions were not groundless: like many other Jacobins of the first hour in the 1790's Grossi as a young man had attended the university of Pavia, an environment able to exert a strong political fascination on young students grown up in touch with the new revolutionary ideals. Then, after approaching Vincenzo Dandolo, who had arrived in Varese from Venice after Campoformio and who was to become his brother-in-law, Grossi seems to have supported Dandolo's action with the Milanese Unitaries, maybe members of the mysterious Società dei raggi,(Society of the Rays) and to have received some of them at home in Varese. Then, in the Napoleonic age, Grossi remained friends with Dandolo, who married his sister, and mixed with the “Venetian colony […] at the foot of the Alps” in Varese, helping him in his agronomic experiments. Far from political life until the 1830's, he was probably ready to support Mazzini's republican and pro-Unitary ideas, maybe carried away by the example of many of his fellow surgeons. What is certain is, from the political point of view, Grossi wasn't one of those repentant democrats and republicans who, after 1814, in the climate of the restored governments, tried to live down their youthful imprudent acts like his brother-in-law Vincenzo, who was to become a count and a senator and a perfect representative of the society of the notables. Grossi's vicissitudes, so intertwined and yet so different from Vincenzo's and from the latter's son's, Tullio- supporter of the revolts of 1821 and then liberal-catholic- lead to reflect not only on the complexity of the Italian Risorgimento but also on the continuity of the Italian unitary and independence aspirations from their first surfacing during the Jacobin three years to the working out of Mazzini's thought.
|Titolo tradotto del contributo||[Autom. eng. transl.] Luigi Grossi and the first Varese Risorgimento|
|Numero di pagine||28|
|Rivista||ANNALI DI STORIA MODERNA E CONTEMPORANEA|
|Stato di pubblicazione||Pubblicato - 2011|
- History of the Risorgimento
- Storia del Risorgimento