HIS102Y1 Study Guide - Giuseppe Mazzini, War Communism, Italian Unification
28 views52 pages
History Exam Outline
Italian Unification Notes
Napoleon’s invasion of Italy
•Before Napoleon invaded Italy, Italy was a very week state and
was mostly ruled by foreign dictators. Also many parts (or states
as Italy was divided into states that were each governed by
different people) were under direct influence of the Austrian
•In 1796 Napoleon successfully invaded and took power of Italy.
He fought off all the local rulers and the Austrians to gain control
of the peninsula.
•In 1798 Napoleon divided Italy into just four and later four states
instead of the previous number. All the new states were ruled
either by napoleon or by his family. (Viceroy a ruler exercising
authority on behalf of a queen or king.
Life under French rule
•It is unclear and there is a lot of historiography on the fact of,
“how was life under French rule”.
•Some say life got worse as Napoleon used a lot of Italian soldiers
in his French army and imposed conscription over Italian men.
He also taxed the people to fund his army, 60% of the money
collected in Italy was used for the French army.
•The church definitely didn’t enjoy French rule for many reasons,
the pope lost his political power, pope was imprisoned, land was
sold off by the French, many monasteries were closed by the
•The wealthy class suffered and benefited from French rule, some
families were ruined but some benefited from all the church land
•Napoleon brought about many economical and business
advantages. External and internal trade barriers were simplified.
Tax collection was organized, roads were built, weights and
measures were standardized, code napoleon (a set of civil
laws) introduced as the national law, street lighting occurred,
vaccination was improved, industry was improved, also it was
very important that governments were introduced in each state
and many men gained experience from the parliaments.
•Also we must say that the Italians absorbed French new ideals of
liberty, and freedom. The people understood that men should be
citizens of state rather than the subjects of a king.
•The life for peasants was just as bad as it was before, they
starved and lived in horrible conditions as before. But these
peasants usually didn’t care who was the ruler of their land, all
they wanted was survival.
•It could also be said that French rule could have started a wave
of nationalism in Italy between the Italians that hated French
Post Napoleon Era
•In 1815 French rule of Italy came to an end as Napoleon was
•At the congress of Vienna it was decided that French land be
restored to the states of pre Napoleonic time.
•Metternich was the ruler of the Austrians at the time of
Napoleon. He was a key figure in the congress of Vienna where
he claimed that in order to avoid another French invasion of Italy,
Austria had to have control of most of Italy. Metternich didn’t
want a united Italy and wanted power for Austria, he claimed
Italian affairs do not exist, as it was true there was no Italy, just a
bunch of states.
•So Italy was once again divided and the old ruling families
returned to rule with Austria
Life under the restored monarchs
•Reactionary- Favoring a return to an old political condition and
being opposed to political progress.
•Revisionist Historians- Those who disagree with the generally
accepted historical interpretations and who argue against them.
•It is believed that there were many revolutions and disturbances
by Italians striving for a united Italy, but all these revolutions
were brutally stopped. However some historians say this is not
true as there were very few disturbances and that the
government controlled everything through secret police like
every other European government.
•These historians also argue that these monarch states were not
reactionary, in Tuscany Ferdinand was no reactionary, he
improved the state by improving health and education. Also in
Parma the duchess also favored change for the better as she got
rid of the code napoleon.
•However the other states were indeed backward as when the old
families returned they introduced the old pre Napoleonic laws
and even destroyed parks, street lights, roads.
•So basically in conclusion life under the restored monarchs was
only progressive and good in Tuscany and Parma while life in
Piedmont, Modena, Naples and the Papal States was reactionary
•After Napoleon there was a growth in the national feeling, many
started studying Italian history as they saw it more interesting
with more culture. Also language become closer to one and the
languages spoken in the states were just different dialects.
•There were many revolutions at this time, the three key one
were in 1820-1, 1831-2. 1848-9. the first two failed and they
were moderate protests against oppressive rule rather than an
attempt of unification. The revolution in 48 was more successful
as the people managed to unite some states until the mighty
French and Austrian armies destroyed them. Also there was an
aspect of Italian unification in this revolution.
•After this revolution people understood that they were going to
need more help at overcoming the Austrians.
•Finally in 1859 piedmont with help from Napoleon 3 defeated the
Austrians and a kingdom of northern Italy was formed. After that
the Italians in the north easily drove out the Austrian rulers of
the southern states and united them to Italy, however many
people thought that the southern states were backward and not
wanted in the nation.
•The Kingdom of Italy was formed in 1861. And more states joined
the kingdom like Rome in 1866.
•The Risorgimento was known as the new rebirth of Italy. Many
historians however are skeptical of the unification as they see it
happening by chance with not a lot of nationalism involved. See
text book for more details in this debate…..
•Contingent means subject to chance and to the effects of the
unforeseen, just like some historians say the unification was
(weak, succeeded by foreign help, hostility of Cavour and
garibaldi and not their friendship)
•The restored monarchs in Italy were challenged by mainly three
•Liberals favored a constitutional monarchy, were against a
republican democracy. Wanted to use democratic ways to gain
•Radicals were much more extreme in their views, wanted to use
violence to gain power, fought for social reforms and better
distribution of wealth.
•Nationalist believed that the Italian nation deserved a single
state. Both liberals and radicals wanted unification.
•Austria of coarse opposed all these views for unification.
Napoleon"s invasion of italy: before napoleon invaded italy, italy was a very week state and was mostly ruled by foreign dictators. Also many parts (or states as italy was divided into states that were each governed by different people) were under direct influence of the austrian empire. In 1796 napoleon successfully invaded and took power of italy. He fought off all the local rulers and the austrians to gain control of the peninsula. In 1798 napoleon divided italy into just four and later four states instead of the previous number. All the new states were ruled either by napoleon or by his family. (viceroy a ruler exercising authority on behalf of a queen or king. It is unclear and there is a lot of historiography on the fact of, How was life under french rule : some say life got worse as napoleon used a lot of italian soldiers in his french army and imposed conscription over italian men.