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History   >   Italy – The Unification of Italy, 1796-1871


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Italy – The Unification of Italy, 1796-1871

In this course, Dr Marcella Sutcliffe (University of Cambridge) explores Italy's unification movement, starting with Napoleon’s invasion of Italy in the late 1790s, and ending with the unification of Italy in 1861. As we move through the course, we think about the impact of Napoleon’s reforms on Italy; the extent to which these reforms were reversed following the Congress of Vienna in 1815 and the various insurrections that followed; the outbreak of revolutions in 1848, including the Five Days in Milan and the declaration of the Roman Republic; the growth of a national consciousness in the years following the crushing of the democrat movements in 1848-49; the life, career, and celebrity of Giuseppe Garibaldi, his Expedition of the Thousand to Sicily in 1860, the famous handshake of Teano, where Garibaldi handed over control of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies to Victor Emmanuel II of Piedmont-Sardinia, and the declaration of the Kingdom of Italy in 1861. The course ends by considering the challenges that faced Italy after 1861, including the continued opposition of the Catholic church, and the fact that Rome and Venice remained under the control of the Pope and the Austrians, respectively.


In this module, we outline some of the key issues that we will discuss in the rest of the course.

Cite this Lecture

APA style

Sutcliffe, M. (2018, August 15). Italy – The Unification of Italy, 1796-1871 - Introduction [Video]. MASSOLIT.

MLA style

Sutcliffe, M. "Italy – The Unification of Italy, 1796-1871 – Introduction." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 15 Aug 2018,


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Dr Marcella Sutcliffe

University of Cambridge