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united in 1861, has significantly contributed to the cultural
and social development of the entire Mediterranean area. Many
cultures and civilizations have existed there since prehistoric
and linguistically, the origins of Italian history can be
traced back to the 9th century BC, when earliest accounts
date the presence of Italic tribes in modern central Italy.
Linguistically they are divided into Oscans, Umbrians and
Latins. Later the Latin culture became dominant, as Rome
emerged as dominant city around 350 BC. Other pre-Roman
civilizations include Magna Graecia in Southern Italy and
the earlier Etruscan civilization, which flourished between
900 and 100 BC in the Center North.
the Roman Republic and Empire that dominated this part of
the world for many centuries came an Italy whose people
would make immeasurable contributions to the development
of European philosophy, science, and art during the Middle
Ages and the Renaissance. Dominated by city-states for much
of the medieval and Renaissance period, the Italian peninsula
also experienced several foreign dominations. Parts of Italy
were annexed to the Spanish, the Austrian and Napoleon's
empire, while the Vatican maintained control over the central
part of it, before the Italian Peninsula was eventually
liberated and unified amidst much struggle in the 19th and
Roma empire in 117
split of Roma empire and perdition of West Roma empire
domination (1559 to 1814)
Main article: Early Modern Italy
The War of the League of Cambrai was a major conflict in the
Italian Wars. The principal participants of the war were France,
the Papal States, and the Republic of Venice; they were joined,
at various times, by nearly every significant power in Western
Europe, including Spain, the Holy Roman Empire, the Kingdom
of England, the Kingdom of Scotland, the Duchy of Milan, Florence,
the Duchy of Ferrara, and the Swiss.
history of Italy in the Early Modern period was characterized
by foreign domination: Following the Italian Wars (1494
to 1559), Italy saw a long period of relative peace, first
under Habsburg Spain (1559 to 1713) and then under Habsburg
Austria (1713 to 1796). During the Napoleonic era, Italy
was a client state of the French Republic (1796 to 1814).
The Congress of Vienna (1814) restored the situation of
the late 18th century, which was however quickly overturned
by the incipient movement of Italian unification.
Black Death repeatedly returned to haunt Italy throughout
the 14th to 17th centuries. The plague of 1575–77 claimed
some 50,000 victims in Venice. In the first half of the
17th century a plague claimed some 1,730,000 victims, or
about 14% of Italy’s population. The Great Plague of
Milan occurred from 1629 through 1631 in northern Italy,
with the cities of Lombardy and Venice experiencing particularly
high death rates. In 1656 the plague killed about half of
Naples' 300,000 inhabitants.
(1814 to 1861)
Main article: Italian unification
Italian unification process.The Risorgimento was the political
and social process that unified different states of the
Italian peninsula into the single nation of Italy.
difficult to pin down exact dates for the beginning and
end of Italian reunification, but most scholars agree that
it began with the end of Napoleonic rule and the Congress
of Vienna in 1815, and approximately ended with the Franco-Prussian
War in 1871, though the last "città irredente"
did not join the Kingdom of Italy until the Italian victory
in World War I.
Monarchy, Fascism and World Wars (1861-1945)
Main article: History of Italy as a monarchy and in the
Italy became a nation-state belatedly — on March 17, 1861,
when most of the states of the peninsula were united under
king Victor Emmanuel II of the Savoy dynasty, which ruled
over Piedmont. The architects of Italian unification were
Count Camillo Benso di Cavour, the Chief Minister of Victor
Emmanuel, and Giuseppe Garibaldi, a general and national
hero. Rome itself remained for a decade under the Papacy,
and became part of the Kingdom of Italy only on September
20, 1870, the final date of Italian unification. The Vatican
is now an independent enclave surrounded by Italy, as is
meeting in 1814(here)
in 1815-1870 (here)
Carbonari ("charcoal burners") were groups
of secret revolutionary societies founded in early
19th-century Italy. Their goals were patriotic and
liberal and they played an important role in the Risorgimento
and the early years of Italian nationalism.
They were organized in the fashion of Freemasonry,
broken into small cells scattered across Italy. They
sought the creation of a liberal, unified Italy.
membership was separated into two classes—apprentice
and master. There were two ways to become a master,
through serving as an apprentice for at least six
months or by being a Freemason on entry. Their
initiation rituals were structured around the trade
of charcoal-selling, hence their name.
Although it is not clear where they were originally established,
they first came to prominence in the Kingdom of Naples during
the Napoleonic wars.
began by resisting the French occupiers, notably Joachim
Murat, the Bonapartist King of Naples. However, once the
wars ended, they became a nationalist organisation with
a marked anti-Austrian tendency and were instrumental in
organising revolution in Italy in 1820–1821 and 1831. The
1820 revolution began in Naples against King Ferdinand I
of the Two Sicilies, who was forced to make concessions
and promise a constitutional monarchy. This success inspired
Carbonari in the north of Italy to revolt too. In 1821,
the Kingdom of Sardinia obtained a constitutional monarchy
as a result of Carbonari actions, as well as other reforms
of liberalism. However, the Holy Alliance would not tolerate
this state of affairs and in February, 1821, sent an army
to crush the revolution in Naples. The King of Sardinia
also called for Austrian intervention. Faced with an enemy
overwhelmingly superior in number, the Carbonari revolts
collapsed and their leaders fled into exile. In 1830, Carbonari
took part in the July Revolution in France. This gave them
hope that a successful revolution might be staged in Italy.
A bid in Modena was an outright failure, but in February
1831, several cities in the Papal States rose up and flew
the Carbonari tricolour. A volunteer force marched on Rome
but was destroyed by Austrian troops who had intervened
at the request of Pope Gregory XVI. After the failed uprisings
of 1831, the governments of the various Italian states cracked
down on the Carbonari, who now virtually ceased to exist.
The more astute members realised they could never take on
the Austrian army in open battle and joined a new movement,
Giovane Italia ("Young Italy") led by the nationalist
and Freemason Giuseppe Mazzini.(here)
hero Giuseppe Garibaldi
(July 4, 1807 – June 2, 1882) was an Italian military and
political figure. In his twenties, he joined the Carbonari
Italian patriot revolutionaries, and had to flee Italy after
a failed insurrection. Garibaldi took part in the War of the
Farrapos and the Uruguayan Civil War leading the Italian Legion,
and afterwards returned to Italy as a commander in the conflicts
of the Risorgimento.
been dubbed the "Hero of the Two Worlds" in tribute
to his military expeditions in both South America and Europe.
He is considered an Italian national hero.
Italian War of Independence
Garibaldi, in a popular colour lithographGaribaldi returned
again to Italy in 1854. Using a legacy from the death of his
brother, he bought half of the Italian island of Caprera (north
of Sardinia), devoting himself to agriculture. In 1859, the
Second Italian War of Independence (also known as the Austro-Sardinian
War) broke out in the midst of internal plots at the Sardinian
government. Garibaldi was appointed major general, and formed
a volunteer unit named the Hunters of the Alps (Cacciatori
delle Alpi). Thenceforth, Garibaldi abandoned Mazzini's republican
ideal of the liberation of Italy, assuming that only the Piedmontese
monarchy could effectively achieve it.
his volunteers, he won victories over the Austrians at Varese,
Como, and other places.
was however very displeased as his home city of Nice (Nizza
in Italian) was surrendered to the French, in return for
crucial military assistance. In April 1860, as deputy for
Nice in the Piedmontese parliament at Turin, he vehemently
attacked Cavour for ceding Nice and the County of Nice (Nizzardo)
to Louis Napoleon, Emperor of the French. In the following
years Garibaldi (with other passionate Nizzardo Italians)
promoted the Irredentism of his Nizza, even with riots (in
See also: Expedition of the Thousand
On January 24, 1860, Garibaldi married an 18-year-old Lombard
noblewoman, Giuseppina Raimondi. Immediately after the wedding
ceremony, however, she informed him that she was pregnant
with another man's child. As a result, Garibaldi left her
the same day.
beginning of April 1860, uprisings in Messina and Palermo
in the independent and peaceful Kingdom of the Two Sicilies
provided Garibaldi with an opportunity. He gathered about
a thousand volunteers (practically all northern Italians,
and called i Mille (the Thousand), or, as popularly known,
the Redshirts) in two ships, and landed at Marsala, on the
westernmost point of Sicily, on May 11.
the ranks of his army with scattered bands of local rebels,
Garibaldi led 800 of his volunteers to victory over a 1500-strong
enemy force on the hill of Calatafimi on May 15. He used
the counter-intuitive tactic of an uphill bayonet charge;
he had seen that the hill on which the enemy had taken position
was terraced, and the terraces gave shelter to his advancing
men. Although small by comparison with the coming clashes
at Palermo, Milazzo and Volturno, this battle was decisive
in terms of establishing Garibaldi's power in the island;
an apocryphal but realistic story had him say to his lieutenant
Nino Bixio, Qui si fa l'Italia o si muore, that is, Here
we either make Italy, or we die. In reality, the Neapolitan
forces were ill guided, and most of its higher officers
had been bought out. The next day, he declared himself dictator
of Sicily in the name of Victor Emmanuel II of Italy. He
advanced then to Palermo, the capital of the island, and
launched a siege on May 27. He had the support of many of
the inhabitants, who rose up against the garrison, but before
the city could be taken, reinforcements arrived and bombarded
the city nearly to ruins. At this time, a British admiral
intervened and facilitated an armistice, by which the Neapolitan
royal troops and warships surrendered the city and departed.
had won a signal victory. He gained worldwide renown and
the adulation of Italians. Faith in his prowess was so strong
that doubt, confusion, and dismay seized, even the Neapolitan
court. Six weeks later, he marched against Messina in the
east of the island. There was a ferocious and difficult
battle at Milazzo, but Garibaldi won through. By the end
of July, only the citadel resisted.
Portrait of Giuseppe Garibaldi.Having finished the conquest
of Sicily, he crossed the Strait of Messina, with the help
of the British Navy, and marched northward. Garibaldi's
progress was met with more celebration than resistance,
and on September 7 he entered the capital city of Naples,
by train. Despite taking Naples, however, he had not to
this point defeated the Neapolitan army. Garibaldi's volunteer
army of 24,000 was not able to defeat conclusively the reorganized
Neapolitan army (about 25,000 men) on September 30 at the
Battle of Volturno. This was the largest battle he ever
fought, but its outcome was effectively decided by the arrival
of the Piedmontese Army. Following this, Garibaldi's plans
to march on to Rome were jeopardized by the Piedmontese,
technically his ally but unwilling to risk war with France,
whose army protected the Pope. (The Piedmontese themselves
had conquered most of the Pope's territories in their march
south to meet Garibaldi, but they had deliberately avoided
Rome, his capital.) Garibaldi chose to hand over all his
territorial gains in the south to the Piedmontese and withdrew
to Caprera and temporary retirement. Some modern historians
consider the handover of his gains to the Piedmontese as
a political defeat, but he seemed willing to see Italian
unity brought about under the Piedmontese crown. The meeting
at Teano between Garibaldi and Victor Emmanuel II is the
most important event in modern Italian history, but is so
shrouded in controversy that even the exact site where it
took place is in doubt.
and his volunteer
and events with the movie
Fran?ois Marie Isidore de Robespierre (IPA: [maksimilj??
f?ɑ?swa ma?i izid?? d? ??b?spj??]) (6 May 1758 – 28 July
1794) is one of the best-known and most influential figures
of the French Revolution. He largely dominated the Committee
of Public Safety and was instrumental in the period of the
Revolution commonly known as the Reign of Terror, which
ended with his arrest and execution in 1794.
27, 1794 (9 Thermidor), Robespierre was executed by the guillotine
was influenced by 18th century Enlightenment philosophes such
as Jean-Jacques Rousseau and Montesquieu, and he was a capable
articulator of the beliefs of the left-wing bourgeoisie. He
was described as physically unimposing and immaculate in attire
and personal manners. His supporters called him "The
Incorruptible", while his adversaries called him the
"Tyrant" and dictateur sanguinaire (bloodthirsty
of an extremist republican club of the French Revolution founded
in Versailles 1789. Helped by Danton's speeches, they proclaimed
the French republic, had the king executed, and overthrew
the moderate Girondins 1792–93. Through the Committee of Public
Safety, they began the Reign of Terror, led by Robespierre.
After his execution in 1794, the club was abandoned and the
name ‘Jacobin’ passed into general use for any left-wing extremist.(here)
Mayflower and Thanksgiving
1620, some wealthy Englishmen hired the Mayflower and the
Speedwell to make a trip to start a colony in Northern Virginia.
The Speedwell turned out to be a leaky ship, and so was unable
to make the famous voyage with the Mayflower.
Jones was the captain of the Mayflower when it took the
Pilgrims to New England in 1620. They came to the tip of
Cape Cod (Massachusetts) on November 11, 1620.
was a very common ship name, and other ships called the
Mayflower made trips to New England; but none of them were
the same ship that brought the Pilgrims to America.
Mayflower stayed in America that winter, and it suffered
the effects of the first winter just as the Pilgrims did,
with almost half dying. The Mayflower set sail for home
on April 5, 1621, arriving back May sixth. The ship made
a few more trading runs, to Spain, Ireland, and lastly to
France. However, Captain Christopher Jones died shortly
thereafter, and was buried in England.
exact size of the Mayflower is unknown. No pictures, paintings,
or detailed description of the Mayflower exist today. However
it is estimated the size of the Mayflower was about 113
feet long from the back rail to the front. A duplicate of
the Mayflower, called the Mayflower II, is in Plymouth,
Mass. Today it is a tourist attraction, and available for
voyage from Plymouth, England to Plymouth Harbor is about
2,750 miles, and took the Mayflower 66 days. The Mayflower
left England with 102 passengers, including three pregnant
women, and a crew of unknown number. One child was born
at sea. After the Mayflower had arrived and was anchored
in Provincetown Harbor off the tip of Cape Cod, Susanna
White gave birth to a son. The Mayflower then sailed across
the bay to Plymouth Harbor. There, Mary Allerton gave birth
to a stillborn son. One passenger died while the Mayflower
was at sea--a young man named William Butten, a servant-apprentice
to Dr. Samuel Fuller. The death occurred just three days
before land was sighted. One Mayflower crew member also
died at sea, but his name is not known. The men of the Mayflower
wrote "The Mayflower Compact", a set of laws for
the new colony. This was the first time that immigrants
to the new country had set down rule of the majority. It
is still used today. The place they stayed was called the
The Mayflower's Voyage :
The Mayflower left Plymouth, England on September 6, 1620
The Mayflower crew sighted land off Cape Cod on November
9, 1620, and first landfall was made November 11, 1620.
AND TIME: The voyage from Plymouth, England to Plymouth
Harbor is about 2,750 miles, and took the Mayflower 66 days.
OF PASSENGERS: The Mayflower left England with 102 passengers,
including three pregnant women, and a crew of unknown number.
While the Mayflower was at sea, Elizabeth Hopkins gave birth
to a son which she named Oceanus. After the Mayflower had
arrived and was anchored in Provincetown Harbor off the
tip of Cape Cod, Susanna White gave birth to a son, which
she named Peregrine (which means "one who has made
a journey"). The Mayflower then sailed across the bay
and anchored in Plymouth Harbor. There, Mary Allerton gave
birth to a stillborn son. One passenger died while the Mayflower
was at sea--a youth named William Butten, a servant-apprentice
to Dr. Samuel Fuller. The death occurred just three days
before land was sighted. One Mayflower crew member also
died at sea, but his name is not known.
The first Thanksgiving was in 1621 and the pilgrims celebrated
it every year thereafter.
The first feast wasn't repeated, so it wasn't the beginning
of a tradition. In fact, the colonists didn't even call
the day Thanksgiving. To them, a thanksgiving was a religious
holiday in which they would go to church and thank God for
a specific event, such as the winning of a battle. On such
a religious day, the types of recreational activities that
the pilgrims and Wampanoag Indians participated in during
the 1621 harvest feast--dancing, singing secular songs,
playing games--wouldn't have been allowed. The feast was
a secular celebration, so it never would have been considered
a thanksgiving in the pilgrims minds.
The original Thanksgiving feast took place on the fourth
Thursday of November.
The original feast in 1621 occurred sometime between September
21 and November 11. Unlike our modern holiday, it was three
days long. The event was based on English harvest festivals,
which traditionally occurred around the 29th of September.
President Franklin D. Roosevelt set the date for Thanksgiving
to the fourth Thursday of November in 1939 (approved by
Congress in 1941). Abraham Lincoln had previously designated
it as the last Thursday in November, which may have correlated
it with the November 21, 1621, anchoring of the Mayflower
at Cape Cod.
The pilgrims wore only black and white clothing. They had
buckles on their hats, garments, and shoes.
Buckles did not come into fashion until later in the seventeenth
century and black and white were commonly worn only on Sunday
and formal occasions. Women typically dressed in red, earthy
green, brown, blue, violet, and gray, while men wore clothing
in white, beige, black, earthy green, and brown.
The pilgrims brought furniture with them on the Mayflower.
The only furniture that the pilgrims brought on the Mayflower
was chests and boxes. They constructed wooden furniture
once they settled in Plymouth.
The Mayflower was headed for Virginia, but due to a navigational
mistake it ended up in Cape Cod Massachusetts.
The Pilgrims were in fact planning to settle in Virginia,
but not the modern-day state of Virginia. They were part
of the Virginia Company, which had the rights to most of
the eastern seaboard of the U.S. The pilgrims had intended
to go to the Hudson River region in New York State, which
would have been considered "Northern Virginia,"
but they landed in Cape Cod instead. Treacherous seas prevented
them from venturing further south (here)
Fortunino Francesco Verdi (Italian
pronunciation: [d?u?z?pp?e ?verdi]; October 9 or 10, 1813
– January 27, 1901) was an Italian Romantic composer, mainly
of opera. He was one of the most influential composers of
the 19th century. His works are frequently performed in opera
houses throughout the world and, transcending the boundaries
of the genre, some of his themes have long since taken root
in popular culture - such as "La donna è mobile"
from Rigoletto, "Va, pensiero" (The Chorus of the
Hebrew Slaves) from Nabucco, "Libiamo ne' lieti calici"
(The Drinking Song) from La traviata and Triumphal March from
Aida. Although his work was sometimes criticized for using
a generally diatonic rather than a chromatic musical idiom
and having a tendency toward melodrama, Verdi’s masterworks
dominate the standard repertoire a century and a half after
Main article: List of compositions by Giuseppe Verdi
Verdi's operas, and their date of première are:
November 17, 1839
Un giorno di regno, September 5, 1840
Nabucco, March 9, 1842
I Lombardi alla prima crociata, February 11, 1843
Ernani, March 9, 1844
I due Foscari, November 3, 1844
Giovanna d'Arco, February 15, 1845
Alzira, August 12, 1845
Attila, March 17, 1846
Macbeth, March 14, 1847
I masnadieri, July 22, 1847
Jérusalem (a revision and translation of I Lombardi alla
prima crociata) November 26, 1847
Il corsaro, 25 October 1848
La battaglia di Legnano, January 27, 1849
Luisa Miller, December 8, 1849
Stiffelio, November 16, 1850
Rigoletto, March 11, 1851
Il trovatore, January 19, 1853
La traviata, March 6, 1853
Les vêpres siciliennes, June 13, 1855
Simon Boccanegra, March 12, 1857
Aroldo (A major revision of Stiffelio), August 16, 1857
Un ballo in maschera, February 17, 1859
La forza del destino, November 10, 1862
Don Carlos, March 11, 1867
Aida, December 24, 1871
Otello, February 5, 1887
Falstaff, February 9, 1893