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What were the major obstacles to the Italian movements in the period 1815-70? How were these obstacles overcome?

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What were the major obstacles to the Italian movements in the period 1815-70? How were these obstacles overcome? Since the Vienna Settlement of 1815 overlooked the growth of nationalism in Italy, the Italians started to unify themselves. Although they faced many obstacles both internally and externally, these obstacles were overcome by 1870. The Risorgimento, which means a revival glory and prestige of the old days, was a success. Internally, the unification movement faced the problem of localism. The Vienna Settlement made localism a prevailing idea after 1815. Italy was divided into eight separate states and each of them had their own system of government and interests. There had been little operation between them. The local rulers were unwilling to see Italy united, as they feared they would lose their privileges and individuality. This was one of the reasons that thwarted the unification movement before 1848 as the actions were on a parochial basis. However, this was overcome after the 1848 Revolution as the states were willing to unite with Piedmont. As the failure of 1848 Revolution showed that Italy could not achieve unification without united supports, some states were now willing to give up their independence and joined Piedmont. ...read more.


There was no state leadership before 1848 Revolution and revolts were on a parochial basis. Evidence was shown in the sparsity of revolts in 1820s and 30s. However, after the Revolution, great leader like Emmanuel II, Cavour and Garibaldi emerged. Victor Emmanuel II retained the constitution granted by his father, thus made Piedmont the most liberal state in Italy. He was also credited for appointing Cavour as the Prime Minister. Cavour was an outstanding diplomat; he carried out intense reforms to strengthen Piedmont and obtained the powers' consent before adding new Italian states to Piedmont. For example, he secured French neutrality by signing the Treaty o Turin before the plebiscite of the three Duchies. By doing so, he carefully avoided foreign intervention in Italy. Garibaldi provided excellent military leadership to Piedmont. It was for his conquest of Sicilies and Naples that southern Italy was incorporated into the Kingdom of Northern Italy. According to Stiles, "He (Garibaldi) represented a non-intellectual active approach to Italian unity." The fourth problem faced by the Italians was the dissension among the revolutionaries. ...read more.


Moreover, the occupation of French troops in Rome also made unification difficult. As the international atmosphere gradually changed the Italian unification movement was shone light on. The increasing national sentiments among the Italian people weaken the power of princes. The flee of Metternich also signified the decline of Austria. The ambitions of Napoleon III allowed Italy to get French help to retrieve Lombardy. The neutrality of France enabled Italy to gain the Central Duchies. Britain's attitude to Italy was sympathetic so she accepted Piedmont as a qualified leader to lead the unification movement after 1848. The presence of British navy at key moments allowed Garibaldi to conquer Sicily and Naples. Her benevolent policy also discouraged intervention from other powers. Prussia helped Piedmont gained Venetia and Rome after the Austro- Piedmontese War and the France-Prussian War. By 1879 all Italian states were free from alien rule. By trying to carry out Risorgimento create the key features of a former, more glorious state, the Italians fought against these obstacles both internally and externally and finally achieved unification successfully. The 1848 Revolution was a milestone in marking the overcoming of obstacles in the unification movement. Italy, by 1870, was no longer a "geographic expression" only. ...read more.

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