Revision – Session 1
The Unification of Italy
Italy 1852-70
 Treaty of Vienna 1815 Italy divided into 4
main areas
 Naples
 Papal States
 Austrian Lands (Lombardy, Venetia, The
 Piedmont-Sardinia
Italy 1852-70
 King of Naples, The Pope and the
Austrians were not interested in
changing the way Italy was governed
 Piedmont wanted change
Cavour’s domestic policies
 Owned large estates and used modern farming
Encouraged development of banking and
Founded newspaper – Il Risorgimento – in
Looked at Britain and France as examples
Supported creation of Piedmontese constitution
Reduced the power of the Catholic church
Abolished church courts
Cavour’s domestic policies
 1850 he became a government minister
 He raised taxes and borrowed from French
banks to clear debt and build railways
He invited foreign banks to invest in Piedmont
1852 he became Prime Minister
He abolished monasteries
He insisted on only speaking Italian
He persuaded the king Victor Emmanuel II that
parliament should stay
Cavour’s domestic policies
 Main aim = to make Piedmont strong
and modern
 Economy and industry = the strongest in
 Wanted to get rid of foreign rulers in Italy
 After failure of 1848-9 war with Austria
seems too difficult
 He needed to get help of a foreign power
like Britain or France
The Defeat of Austria
 Cavour would get the help of Britain or France
by helping them in the Crimean war (1854-5)
 At the Paris Peace Conference at the end of the
war – Europe listened to Cavour’s problems
 Nothing happened until 1858 when Orsini tried
to assasinate Napoleon III – Cavour helped the
French find the culprit
 Orsini’s at his arrest made desparate plea for
help with Italy’s problems made Napoleon
decide to help
The Defeat of Austria
 Napoleon met Cavour in secret at
 In December 1858 a treaty was signed
to say that France would help Piedmont
in a war against Austria in return for Nice
and Savoy
 Cavour provoked the Austrians into war
by ordering his army reserves to report
for duty
The Defeat of Austria
 French forces helped the Piedmontese
win victories at Magenta and Solferino
 The second battle was so bloody that
Napoleon sought an armistice
 Napoleon was also worried things were
getting out of hand
 People in the Austrian duchies had
driven out their rulers…
The Defeat of Austria
 Napoleon offered an armistice without
consulting Cavour
He met the Austrian Emperor at Villafranca in
July 1859
They agreed that Lombardy should be given
over and Venetia would remain Austrian
Austrian dukes were reinstated to their duchies
Cavour was furious and resigned
Defeat of Austria
 But when the Austrian dukes returned to their
duchies they were expelled and the people
voted to join Piedmont
 Cavour became Prime Minister again in 1860
and persuaded Napoleon III to agree to their
Treaty – in return for Nice and Savoy Piedmont
kept Lombardy and the duchies.
 Austria stilll controlled Venetia
 The campaign was partly successful
 Revolts against their rulers occured in south as
well as north Italy
1860 revolt against the king of Naples – it was
crushed but did not go unnoticed
Garibaldi, a freedom fighter, decided to support
the people of Naples
He had supported Cavour but did NOT support
the fact that he had handed Nice over to the
He was about to go to Nice and help defend it
from the French when he heard of the troubles
in Sicily and went there instead
 In May 1860 he set sail for Sicily with a
thousand volunteer ‘soldiers’ – the redshirts
They defeated the king of Naples army in Sicily
by the end of July
Then went to the mainland – they were able to
cross the sea because they were mistaken for
British soldiers
Garibaldi took the city of Naples and the king
Garibaldi then planned to march onto the Papal
States and possibly to Venetia
The Papal States
 Cavour had watched on as Garibaldi conquered
 He was that Garibaldi might attack Rome as
this would prompt the French to defend
 Cavour ordered Piedmontese troops to march
south and stop Garibaldi
 The two armies met and Garibaldi handed over
his conquests to Victor Emmanuel
The Papal States
 Most of the Papal states broke away from the
Pope and voted to join Piedmont
Naples and Sicily did the same
Kingdom of Italy was proclaimed March 1861
Victor Emmanuel was first king
Rome and a small area around it and Venetia
(still controlled by the Austrians) were not part
of the kingdom – although it was what many
Venetians wanted
Venetia and Rome
 1862 Garibaldi tried again to occupy Rome but
was stopped by Piedmont
1864 Napoleon agreed to move his troops from
Rome if Italian capital was moved to Florence
1866 French removed troops from Rome
May 1866 Italy signed a Treaty with Prussia
Prussia went to war with Austria
Austria signed a secret Treaty with France (so
the French would stay out of the war – terms =
hand Venetia over to Italy)
Venetia and Rome
 Prussia defeated Austria
 Austria leaves Venetia – Venetia becomes part
of Italy 1866
Garibaldi attempted to occupy Rome AGAIN
and results in more French troops being sent to
1870 Franco-Prussian war = withdrawal of
French troops
Piedmontese army occupy Rome in September
Becomes part of Italy in October and is
proclaimed capital