This bronze equestrian statue of Giuseppe Missori was created by Riccardo Ripamonti, an Italian sculptor, and was inaugurated in 1916 in Milan, Italy. It is located at Piazza Giuseppe Missori (about 500 m south of Piazza del Duomo).
Giuseppe Missori was an Italian patriot who served under Giuseppe Garibaldi (the creator of the Kingdom of Italy) during the Second Italian War of Independence, the Expedition of the Thousand, and the Third Italian War of Independence.
Missori was born in 1829, to a family of Bolognese origin, and moved to Milan where he first proved his patriotic enthusiasm in the Five Days of Milan. He fought side by side with Garibaldi and saved his life in the Battle of Milazzo in 1860.
The statue features an unusually weary-looking horse, which the Milanese reportedly nicknamed “caval de brüm” (roughly meaning “carriage horse”) because of its less than martial appearance; a saying “te pàret el cavall del Missori” (“you look like Missori’s horse”) is also sometimes used in Milan to address someone who looks sad.
The inscription on the pedestal of the statue, now almost illegible, commemorates Missori saving Garibaldi’s life in Milazzo:
Il colonnello Giuseppe Missori, con la solita sua bravura, mi sbarazzò col suo revolver dal mio antagonista di cavalleria nemica.
Colonel Giuseppe Missori, clever as usual, with his revolver got rid of my antagonist from the enemy cavalry.”Inscription on the base
That horse in the statue was, reportedly, part of a former work by Ripamonti, entitled Waterloo; and the original rider was Napoleon, on the occasion of his famous defeat.
Giuseppe died of sickness in Milan in 1911. His funeral was attended by the population, political representatives, and a delegation of Martinitt, the boys from the Milanese orphanage which Missori had directed for a while. According to his will, his body was cremated. On 11 June 1929 and his remains were placed in the “Famedio”, the main building of the Monumental Cemetery of Milan, reserved for the most eminent Milanese people.