Unification of Italy



Nationalism arose mainly after the Napoleon attack in 1796. He consolidated the four major areas and people of Italy wanted revival of rich culture as during that of Renaissance period.

Congress of Vienna (1815)

As Italy was a large area, it could emerge as another powerful state. Therefore it was not declared as an independent state but distributed among kingdoms of France, Spain and Austria.

Like German unification, Italian unification was also done in three parts.

  • 1858-59 : War against Austria and integration of Lombardy
  • 1860 : Integration of Parma, Modena, Tuscany, Naples and Sicily
  • 1866 : Integration of Venice and in 1871, Rome.

(Nationalism arose in 1815 but actually started in 1858.)

Causes of Unification

  • Nationalism Wave of nationalism swept across Europe in nineteenth century, Language, Religion and Territory.
    • Italian thinkers, writers, artists started bringing up cultural traditions
    • Secret societies were formed for political change to overthrow Austrian government.
    • Carboneria was a secret organisation (1800-31) aimed simply ato remove foreign rule and tyranny.
    • Guiseppe Mazzini was the first person who gave idea of unification. In 1831 formed YOUNG ITALY a nationalist group. He gave the Republican ideology and was exciled to France but smuggled patriotic pamphlets to Italy. However, all his insurrections sadly failed.
  • Cound Cavour who was the Prime Minister of Piedmont Sardinia (1852) under King Victor Emanuel II was the architect of Italian Unification.
    • He founded nationalistic newspaper Il Risorgiments. Gave civil rights freedom of press and economi development.

Cavour’s policies

  • Built up Sardinian economy
  • Believed unified Italy should be reborn as monarchy
  • Spread telling of unification to neighbouring states
  • Helped France and British soldiers in crimean War. At the conference, he highlighted Austria’s suppression over Italy. Thereby gained sympathy.

Phase I (1858-59)

  • Lombardy and Venice were instigated by cavour against Austria
  • Austria declared war on Sardinia
  • Italy with French helped emerged as victor and liberated Lombardy
  • But could not lierate Venice
  • Lombardy was therefore integrated

Phase II (1860)

  • Parma, Modena, tuscany was ruled by client state of Habsburg.
  • Plebiscite was conducted here and people voted to join Piedmont- Sardinia.
  • Some popal states were also unified.
  • Challenge: cavour had a deal with France only for Austria. the Southern Italy was under Bourbon dynasty who were relatives of Napoleon III. This could dismantle Cavour and Napoleon III’s relation.
  • Guiseppe Garibaldi came to rescue. Cavour asked him to lead Sardinian army against Sicily. these armies were called Red Shirts. With this, Naples and Sicily were also liberated.
  • On this Cavour said to Napoleon III- Bourban dynasty =had been overthrown by a revolutionary garibaldi. I will not attack Pope. Kindly ask pope yo let my army pass through so that I can go attack Sicily.
  • In 1861, Victor Emannuel II provclaimed the kingdom. Sadly Cavour died at the age of 50, due to over work.

Phase III 1866, 71

  • The King signed treaty with Prussia with following terms
    • both against Austria
    • Italy will help in Austria-Prussia war.
    • Venice will be given to Italy after any such war.
    • There was a Battle of Sodowa (1866) where Prussia won and Venice was given to Italy.
  • Papal State was still under France.
    • But in Franco Prussian war france lost. Napoleon III was captured.
    • Rome was captured and made capital of Italy.
    • But since they respected Pope, Vatican city is still under the control of Pope.

Post a Comment