What is the Capital of Italy?
The official and political capital of the country Italy is Rome. The capital of Italy, the main political, cultural, significant economic center of the country, one of the oldest cities in the world rich in historical and cultural monuments, called the “eternal city”. The administrative center of the Roman province and the region of Lazio. Within the boundaries of the city is the papal state, the city of Vatican City.
How Rome became the capital of Italy?
Rome, capital of Italy. This evidence is not one, even today, for all Italians. In 1870, already, this project met many resistances. That of the pope of course, but also that… of the Roman population.
Rome, capital* of Italy: it may be obvious to us, but it is not one for all Italians, even today. After the Constitution of the kingdom had been promulgated in 1848, and the unity achieved under the reign of Victor-Emmanuel of Piedmont-Sardinia, choosing a capital turned out to be very difficult. If the name of Rome could impose itself, the resistance of Catholics first, for whom the city was and should remain the capital of the Papal States*, and those of the inhabitants of the former Italian States, who proposed other cities, then , remained powerful. And, until today, a part of the public opinion, certainly minority, would see more in Milan, first economic power of the country, a credible capital.
The first capital of Italy was Turin . In fact, when the Unification of Italy was proclaimed in 1861 , Rome was not even included within the national borders.
The Second War of Independence and the Expedition of the Thousand led by Garibaldi had handed over to the kingdom of Sardinia of Vittorio Emanuele II Lombardy, part of Central Italy and the whole of the South, subtracted from the now ex-Kingdom of the Two Sicilies. The Veneto remained outside, still in the hands of the Austrians and, in fact, the Papal State, governed by the intransigent Pope Pius IX , who had no intention of leaving Rome to the newborn Italian kingdom.
Therefore it was decided to provisionally elect Turin, already the capital of the kingdom of Sardinia, as the temporary administrative center of the new state.
To give support to the Pope, however, there was a very powerful ally, the French emperor Napoleon III (nephew of Napoleon Bonaparte ), who, just to ensure that the Kingdom of Italy had no claim to get its hands on Rome, the 15 September 1864 he made an agreement with the Italians (the so-called September Convention) with which the definitive capital was moved from Turin to Florence .
Florence therefore had to remain the capital of the very young Italian kingdom and for this reason massive public works began immediately to adapt the still small Tuscan city to Its new role: most of the old 14th-century walls were demolished to make way for roads and administrative buildings, while majestic Renaissance palaces became the seat of ministries and state offices.
Florence, the capital, however, lasted very little. Contrary to what was promised to Napoleon III, Italy indeed had the desire to take Rome and finally succeeded in 1870 , with the famous episode of the breach of Porta Pia . From 1871 therefore Rome became the third capital of Italy!
THE TWO “WAR” CAPITALS
Since 1871, therefore, Rome has always been the recognized capital of Italy, both during the monarchical period, which ended in 1946, and after the proclamation of the Republic . but there were two brief exceptions.
In fact, during the atrocious interlude of the Second World War , Italy found itself split in half. After the armistice of 8 September 1943, in fact, the Center-North remained under the control of the Nazi-Fascists, while the South had already been liberated by the Allied Forces, who were struggling to climb up the boot. King Vittorio Emanuele III and the government therefore fled to Brindisi , in Puglia, which became the fourth capital until February 1944, when it was the turn of Salerno to boast, albeit for a short time, this title.
Finally, when American troops entered Rome between 4 and 5 June 1944, the Eternal City was able to regain its historic title.
Major Italian city (2,784,000 inhab.) And capital of the country since 1871, it is also the capital of the Lazio region, in central Italy; the urban area instead welcomes 3,207,000 people, not much more than the municipality alone, but this is explained by the fact that it is the largest in our country, thanks to an area of 1,287 km².
According to legend, the foundation of Rome dates back to 734 BC by the brothers Romolo and Genio, with other sources placing it in the previous century; already in the space of a handful of centuries the city had developed considerably and had assumed a role of primary importance in its geographical area, a prelude to an impressive expansion, which made Rome the most important center of Europe and of all the World for several centuries, with the Roman Empire occupying a vast territory; around 150 AD the city had about 1.5 million inhabitants.
The demographic evolution was truly singular, given that following the collapse and the end of the Western Roman Empire in 476 AD, the population went from 650,000 to just 40,000 inhabitants in just a century, with a minimum of 30,000. people around the year one thousand; the recovery was very slow, only 175,000 inhabitants in 1850, but there was an incredible surge from the founding of the Kingdom of Italy to 1971, with an increase of about 15 times, in just over 100 years!
Its very rich history has contributed to making Rome one of the current most visited cities in the world and certainly in the very first places in terms of cultural, archaeological and artistic heritage; to this we also add the presence at Vatican City , seat of the Catholic Church.
Rome is located along the banks of the Tiber River , the third longest watercourse in Italy, at an altitude of 21 meters above sea level, which however varies depending on the area, given that the city is located in a hilly and it also overlooks the Tyrrhenian Sea to the west, about 25 kilometers from the center.
Among the innumerable points of interest in Rome we mention first of all the Imperial Forums and the Colosseum, which make us understand the opulence of the city at the time of its maximum splendor; the religious architecture is also noteworthy, from the Basilica of St. Peter in the Vatican, to the Pantheon, to the Basilica of San Giovanni in Laterano; There are also some military buildings such as Castel Sant’Angelo and others more recent, such as the Altare della Patria.