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(Fortunino Francesco) (1813-1901) Italian opera composer of the Romantic period. He who took his native operatic style to new heights of dramatic expression. In 1842 he wrote the opera Nabucco, followed by Ernani 1844 and Rigoletto 1851. Other works include Il trovatore and La traviata both 1853, Aďda 1871, and the masterpieces of his old age, Otello 1887 and Falstaff 1893. His Requiem 1874 commemorates Alessandro Manzoni.
During the mid-1800s, Verdi became a symbol of Italy's fight for independence from Austria, frequently finding himself in conflict with the Austrian authorities, who felt that his operas encouraged Italian nationalism.