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Alessandro La Marmora

Alessandro Ferrero La Marmora (March 27, 1799 – June 7, 1855) was an Italian general who is best remembered for founding the military unit known as the Bersaglieri. His brother was Alfonso Ferrero La Marmora.



He had traveled in France, England, Bavaria, Saxony, Switzerland, and the Tyrol to study the armies and tactics of these countries and meticulously investigated the armaments and equipment of these foreign armies.[1 ] He demonstrated an early interest in military technology, and worked assiduously to improve the breechloading gun, for example. At his own house, he built a workshop to experiment with military technology.[1 ]

The first public appearance of the Bersaglieri was on the occasion of a military parade on July 1, 1836. The new corps impressed King Carlo Alberto, who immediately had them integrated as part of the "Armata Sarda" - the Piedmontese regular army.

Throughout the nineteenth century, under La Marmora’s leadership, the Bersaglieri filled the role of skirmishers, screening the slow-moving line and column formations, but acting as special shock troops if required. They were originally intended to serve as mountain troops, as well; the climber Jean Antoine Carrel was a Bersagliere. When the Alpini Corps were created in 1872 a strong rivalry arose between the two elite corps.

Military record

He participated in the Battle of Goito (1848) during the First Italian War of Independence and served as a division commander in the Crimean War.[1 ]


He died at Crimea from cholera shortly after disembarking there during the Crimean War.


  1. ^ a b c Alessandro Ferrero della Marmora

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