The three key leaders of the Italian unification project were Giuseppe Garibaldi, Count Cavour, and Victory Emmanuel II. Emmanuel's second triumph defeated the popes of France, emancipated southern Italy, and declared himself Emperor of undivided Italy. The campaign for Italian unity was not completed immediately after his victory because Emmanuel II had many other issues to deal with -- such as wars with Austria and Turkey -- but it did lead to the creation of a new nation.
Garibaldi led many successful campaigns to unite Italy but was unable to reach an agreement with Cavour before he died. However, Cavour did manage to bring about a legislative referendum that would have allowed voters to decide whether they wanted to be part of a united Italy or remain independent. But although they wanted to be unified, the people of Italy voted no in the referendum and thus prevented further action on Cavour's part. This means that Cavour and Garibaldi were close to achieving their goal but weren't able to complete it before they passed away.
Victory Emmanuel II continued the work of his predecessors and by 1900 Italy was completely united. He decided to make his capital city Milan since it was central to both the northern and southern parts of the country and could serve as a symbolic center for a new nation.
Italy has been united since 1946 when Benito Mussolini resigned following a political scandal.
Furthermore, what caused Italy's unification? The Franco-Austrian War of 1859 was the catalyst for physical Italian unification. In 1859 and 1860, the northern Italian republics decided to join the Kingdom of Piedmont-Sardinia, a key step toward unification, while Piedmont-Sardinia relinquished Savoy and Nice to France. In 1861, all of Italy was united into one country under King Vittorio Emanuele II of Piedmont-Sardinia.
Italy's unification can be explained by its geopolitical situation. Before the 19th century, Italy was a collection of city-states that had been ruled by various families for hundreds of years. There were no national institutions such as a government or army; instead, there were powerful regional governments that managed internal affairs.
In 1796, Napoleon forced Italy's major cities to surrender to him. He then gave them back to their own citizens, who formed new republics. This process continued until 1815, when Napoleon was defeated at Waterloo and Europe returned to peace. By this time, the Italian peninsula had become separated into several small states, which had different political systems and religions. For example, Piedmont had established itself as a monarchy with royal ties to the French throne but with an independent state policy.
When Napoleon was exiled to Saint Helena in 1815, his power over Italy was reduced to a few ports on the Mediterranean Sea.
3. The secret organizations founded by Giuseppe Mazzini, such as the Young Italy and the Young Europe, were instrumental in the unification of Italy. 4. Through a deft diplomatic alliance with France, Chief Minister Cavour spearheaded the drive to combine the territories, and Sardinia-Piedmont defeated Austrian forces in 1859. 5. In 1866, following victories over rival powers, King Victor Emmanuel II officially declared Italy's unity.
6. After many years of negotiations, Italy finally united its peninsula in 1870 under King Vittorio Emanuele II. 7. Although he was born in Parma, Napoleon III of France gave his support to the unification of Italy under one government. 8. So, France helped Italy become one country.
9. Also, Switzerland helped by giving Italy access to water by signing a treaty with them in 1815. 10. This is how Italy became one country - through diplomacy and assistance from other countries.
1. It took 70 years from Risorgimento (the movement for national independence) until Unification. 2. The last king of Italy was Charles I. 3. Mussolini was not only important in the unification process but also in the development of Italian culture and art. 4. He introduced political propaganda into everyday life which resulted in violence. 5. Giovanni Giolitti was the first prime minister of Italy.