Associazione Nazionale Granatieri di Sardegna
The Mechanised Brigade of Sardinian Grenadiers takes its name from one of the
oldest specialities of the Army, Grenadiers. These were present through out many units,
however it was in the three Regiment of Grenadiers that they were most famed. Therefore
the origins of the present brigade can connected with all Grenadiers but in particular the
Brigade of Grenadier Guards. This Brigade was so named on the 20th Jan 1816 and formed around
two regiments by a decree of 28th Oct 1831.
20 Jan 1816. The Regiment of Guards assumes the form of the Brigade of Grenadier Guards.
20 Oct 1831. An order of 1832 ensured the position of the Guards as the most senior regiment
in the Army. The brigade now consisted of two regiments as the existing regiment of Grenadiers
was joined by a regiment of Cacciatori Guards.
14 Oct 1848. The Brigade of Guards became three regiments. A second regiment of Guards was
raised and thus joined the First Regiment of Grenadiers and the Cacciatori.
20 Apr 1850. A Royal Decree was passed and the Brigade of Guards was disbanded and reformed
as the Brigade of Grenadiers. This was formed from the 1st and 2nd Regiments of Grenadiers.
The Regiment of Caccatori Guards became an autonomous unit within the Brigade and was renamed
the Cacciatori of Sardinia.
19 Mar 1852. The Cacciatori of Sardinia were disbanded. The ten companies of the Cacciatorri
were dived five and five respectively between the 1st and 2nd Regiments of Grenadiers. This had
the effect of ensuring the inheritance and the traditions of the Cacciatori were continued. As
a result the Regiments changed their names to the Grenadiers of Sardinia taking the title of Sardinia
from the disbanded regiment. Consequently the name of the Brigade of Grenadiers changed to the
Brigade of Sardinian Grenadiers.
11 Mar 1926. At the end of 1926 the Brigade of Infantry, as a result on the basis of a new Army
order (itself following on from a law of the 11 Mar 1926, number 396), would be no longer be
formed of two regiments but of three. Therefore the structure of the Brigade was adapted by the
formation of the 3rd Regiment of Sardinian Grenadiers in Viterbo on the 1 Nov 1926. Moreover,
the execution of this law abolished the name of the Brigade of Infantry and therefore the Brigade
of Grenadiers was transformed and became the 21st Brigade of Grenadiers consisting of 3 Regiments
of Grenadiers. The Brigade of Grenadiers was homogenous with an integrated command structure.
The Brigade maintained this form until 1935, the year in which the Brigade became multi arm with
the inclusion of the 13th Regiment of Artillery.
08 Feb 1934. The 21st Military Division of Rome, into which the 21st Brigade had been placed,
assumed the name the 21st Division. The new organisation was then renamed the 21st Division of Sardinian Grenadiers.
31 Dec 1934. By order of the Ministry of War the 21st Brigade incorporated the 13th Regiment
of Field Artillery. The name and the formation remained until the end of 1939 when a new general
order from the Army abolished many brigades including the 21st.
Jul 1939. With the abolition of these Brigades the 3rd Regiment of Sardinian Grenadiers
left the Grenadiers Division for operations on the Greco Albanian front. Thus the 21st Division
remained formed of the 1st and 2nd Regiment of Grenadiers and the 13th Regiment of Field Artillery.
During the Second World War many formations from this Division took part in operations on the Western
Front and in the Balkans.
Late 1942. At the end of 1942 the Grenadiers re-entered Rome becoming part of the Armoured
Corps (of the Italian Army) and taking charge of the preparation of strong points protecting the
main access routes into the capital.
8 – 10 Sep 1942. From the 8 to the 10 Sep 1943 they deployed to the south of Rome –
participating in the defence of Rome and distinguishing themselves in this operation. With the
proclamation of the Armistice in 1943 the Division was disbanded, after having taken heavy losses
in the Defence of Rome, and it was reconstituted in 1948.
1 Jul 1946. Immediately after the end of the Monarchy and the proclamation of the Republic,
the first Regiment of Grenadiers was reformed. Successively on the 1 Apr 1948 the Division of
Infantry was reformed with, the Sardinian Grenadiers and the 13th Regiment of Field Artillery.
The 17th Infantry (Acqui) and the 46th Infantry from Reggio were also reconstituted. During this
period the Division of Sardinian Grenadiers assumed a new organic structure like the Pianura Infantry
Division and whilst the 1st Regiment of Grenadiers and the 17th Regiment took on a new organic structure
and armaments, the 46th Regiment of Infantry came to substitute the regiment of armoured infantry.
1 Nov 1976. On the 1 Nov 1976 the reform programme of the Army and thus the Division, transformed the
Mechanised Brigade of Sardinian Guards into a unit which contained mixed arms and services. The
reorganisation and restructuring not only affected mechanisation, which had augmented the operational
capacity of the Division, but also looked at the internal structure of the Brigade; specifically making
regiments more flexible and setting up the structures for battalion autonomy.
1992. The Army directed the reconstruction of the Regiment.
2001. The brigade at that time consisted of: the 1st Regiment of Sardinian Grenadiers, the 8th
Regiment (Lancers of Montebello), 33rd Regiment of self propelled field Artillery, the Command and
Tactical Support Element.