Risorgimento History of Italy 1860-1878

The Unification of Italy

In the 1850es Savoy-Piemont-Sardinia became the hope of Italy's nationalists - most of Italy's other northern territories were either Austrian provinces (Lombardo-Venetia) or principalities closely associated with Austria (Parma, Modena, Tuscany). The Papal State and the Kingdom of Two Sicilies were regarded backward.
Savoy-Piemont-Sardinia's prime minister, Count Camillo Benso di Cavour, had supported the Anglo-French side in the Crimean War and thus gained the sympathies of these two nations. In 1859, he secured an alliance with Napoleon III.'s France. In the ensuing Franco-Austrian War of 1859, the French defeated the Austrians in the Battle of Solferino; Austria ceded France, which again ceded it to Piemont-Sardinia (which again ceded Savoy proper and Nizza (Nice) to France) and recognized the coups which toppled the monarchies in Parma, Modena, the Tuscany; here plebiscites voted for annexation of their respective countries into Piemont-Sardinia, which soon was renamed the Kingdom of Italy.
Giuseppe Garibaldi, at the head of 1000 volunteers ( Redshirts), landed on Sicily and began a fight (against troops outnumbering him heavily) which lead to the conquest of the Kingdom of Two Sicilies. On October 25th 1860 Garibaldi met King Victor Emmanuel at Teano; in the famous Handshake of Teano he handed over the two Sicilies to the Kingdom of Italy. Even before Garibaldi's conquest of the Two Sicilies was completed, Italian troops ocupied Marches, while French troops occupied Papal State.
With the exception of Venetia (which would be gained in the Seven Weeks War of 1866) and Latium (which would be gained as a by-product of the Franco-German War of 1870), the unification of Italy was completed.

Cronologia, Italian language site on Italian and World History
History of Italy : Foreign Domination and Unification, from Wikipedia
Unification, from Windows on Italy
Notes on the Unification of Italy, from York Univ., from Killeenroos.com
Biography of Count Camillo Cavour, from Encyclopedia of the 1848 Revolution
Italian Unification, links from Dept. of History, Univ. Leiden
The Anthony P. Campanella Collection of Giuseppe Garibaldi, an illustrated online exhibition (1997) at Univ. of South Carolina, click islands 3ff
La unificacio d'Italia (1848-1870), from La Pagina de la Historia, in Catalan
DOCUMENTS For Maps see Historical Atlas, Italy Page (at this site)
Sources on Italy's Unification, from Modern History Sourcebook
Cavour to Victor Emanuel, on Plombieres Agreement 1858, from Modern Italy at Dickinson College
Cavour to Napoleon III. on Plombieres Agreement, 1858, from Modern Italy at Dickinson College
Franco-Sardinian Alliance, secret treaty, Jan. 24th 1859, from Modern Italy at Dickinson College
Armistice at Villafranca, between Napoleon III. and Franz Joseph II. 1859, from Modern Italy at Dickinson College, bilingual
Garibaldi's speech addressing his redshirts (volunteers), 1860, from The History Place
Garibaldi on the Conquest of Naples, 1860, from Modern Italy at Dickinson College
New York Times on the Battle of Solferino, from Documents in Military History at Hillsdale
King Victor Emmanuel's address to Parliament in Rome, 1871, from Modern History Sourcebook
Images from Chronik 2000 Bilddatenbank : Battle of Solferino; Garibaldi in front of Capua; Guiseppe Garibaldi; Handshake of Teano, Oct. 26th 1860; Victor Emanuel II., King of Italy
Documents on Italian Unification, from supereva, in Italian
Swedish language documents on Italy's unification (10 articles from Illustrerad Tidning), from University Stockholm
REFERENCE History Book Reviews : Pre-Unification Italy, -1859

Article Italy, in : Encyclopaedia Britannica, 15th edition, Macropaedia, Vol.22 pp.165-247, KMLA Lib.Sign. R 032 B862n v.22
Christopher Duggan, A Concise History of Italy, Cambridge Concise Histories, 1994, pp.120-133
Luciano Cafagna, The Industrial Revolution in Italy 1830-1914, in : Carlo M. Cipolla (ed.), The Fontana Economic History of Europe, Vol.4 : The Emergence of Industrial Societies [G]
Giuseppe Garibaldi, My Life, translated by Stephen Parkin, London : Hesperus (1932) 2004, KMLA Lib.Sign. 945.08092 G 232m
William Roscoe Thayer, The Life and Times of Cavour, London, Vol.1 Elibron Classics (1911) 2006, Vol.2 Kessinger Publishing (1914) n.d., KMLA Lib. Call Sign 945.08 T369

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First posted in 2000, last revised on April 21st 2008

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