10,888 Italian soldiers fell fighting to conquer the free land of Abyssinia and were buried here. This is one of the biggest Italian Cemeteries in Africa.

This is one of the biggest Italian Cemeteries in Africa. In this compound lied 10,888 Italian soldiers fallen fighting to conquer the free land of Abyssinia.

Each separate block on the ground contains more than 300 bodies. Around the fence are stone-engraved religious and historic images and scripts curved out of stones which contain their names and sculptures of St.Marry and Jesus, her son.

The bodies were collected from all the battle fields around Werqamba, Abiy Adi and the surrounding, especially from a bitter battle held on the foothill of a mountain known as Werqamba located to the west of the cemetery.

A note inside the cemetery states “Those bodies which were identified has been moved to another place. The bodies still in here are those whose identity are not known to anybody except to God“.

The cemetery is located on the main roadside running Werqamba to Abiy Adi in between agricultural fields. Close to it is a church of St. Mary under construction.

Gheralta Lodge was first assumed to be built here in front of the cemetery. The owner promised to built the lodge and a church for the locals. In the church he told them would be erecting two photographs of St. Mary, one black, which the Romans believe in and one in color, a picture of her which the local community believe in. This ended in disagreement with the locals, as they don’t want to see St. Mary, the black. St. Mary is among the black Christian in Tigrai is represented in color, while among the white Christians in Italy is represented in deep black.

There is another stale some 300 meters to the south of the cemetery built to commemorate all the fallen heroes, heroins and humankind in general from both sides. Its caption, written in three languages Amharic, English and Italian, goes “In memory of the warriors who fell during the battle of Tembien in which clashed the opposing armies led by their highness’s Ras Seyum, Ras Kasa and by Gen. Somma.

It believed that more than 20,000 Italian soldiers are burried in Tigrai. 10,888 of which are in this compound (Wersege), 4,000 in Adigrat, 500 in Mekelle Enda Eyessus, and others in Aqab S’at, Endabaguna, Adi Abun, Emba Alaje, Axum, Wuqro, Selekleka, Enticho, Biet Mara and other places.