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12 Surprising Facts About Emiliano Zapata, Mexico's Reluctant Revolutionary

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Chances are you've heard the name Emiliano Zapata but don't know that much about him. But the man, a staunch idealist who became a reluctant revolutionary, had a massive impact on Mexican history. He was a freedom fighter who, in no uncertain terms, changed the course of history. So maybe now you're interested in learning some badass Emiliano Zapata stories and surprising Emiliano Zapata facts? 

Admittedly, "badass" is a relative term for Zapata. He wasn't kicking down doors with a six shooter in each hand, or rolling into town pumping out rounds from his shotgun while smoking a giant Cuban cigar. Rather, Zapata was a compassionate idealist who fought for the rights of the common people. Despite his lasting national importance, Zapata saw himself as little more than a local leader. But also, come on, raising an army and taking the fight to wealthy and oppressive forces is totally badass. 

Read on to learn all about the life and exploits of this legendary Mexican revolutionary. Amidst the chaos and corruption of early 20th century Mexico, Zapata stuck to a fundamental vision and simple concepts concerning freedom and economic justice. He is a remarkable historical figure, revered Mexican symbol of national pride.   

  • His Honest Attempts to Protect His Village's Way of Life Turned Into a Revolution

    Photo: Photographer Unknown / Public Domain
  • His Guerrilla Army Took Land Back from Wealthy Thieves and Redistributed It to the People

    Photo: Photographer Unknown / Public Domain
  • He Was a Relatively Humble Guy in a Time of Chaotic Political Hubris

  • He's Responsible for One of the Most Famous and Misattributed Quotes Ever

    Photo: Photographer Unknown / Public Domain