The author, who may be reached at Robert.Avery@express.co.uk, has kindly shared his history of the Risorgimento on his website with readers of the Victorian Web. The copyright for text and images of course remains with him.

deorated initial 'A' he Risorgimento refers to the process by which the modern country of Italy was forged from a collection of individual Italian States linked only by geography. It began with the ending of Napoleon's reign and the Congress of Vienna in 1815, and ended with the Franco-Prussian War in 1870-71. Throughout that period the question of Italy dominated European politics: with personalities such as Cavour, Mazzini and, of course, Garibaldi becoming household names.

The Risorgimento offers a fascinating and colourful mixture of armies, personalities, skirmishes, rebellions, grand battles and wars. Understanding what was actually happening, however, is somewhat complicated. This article is designed to give a brief overview of the period: So don your red shirt and grey poncho, read on, and cry: Qui si fa l'Italia o si muore ("Here we make Italy — or die!" Guiseppe Garibaldi, at the battle of Calatafimi, in Sicily, 15th May 1860)

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Last modified 15 July 2010