On this day 150 years ago (1870), the Italian royal army marched into Rome. The period of unification of our western neighbor (Risorgimento) is over, and at the same time, after more than a thousand years, this marked the end for the Papal State. King Victor Emmanuel II moved into the papal palace at Quirinal. from the Savoy dynasty. Pope Pius IX however, he withdrew behind the Vatican walls and declared himself a "Vatican prisoner." Thus, by February 1929, the dream of an independent ecclesiastical state had come to an end.
The Kingdom of Italy was united from various parts in March 1861 under the Savoy dynasty (Piedmont). The first capital of the new state became Turin, and in 1864 the capital was moved to Florence. The Italians aspired to Rome and the territory of the Papal States in central Italy, which, however, remained under the protection and military protection of French King Napoleon III. But in 1870 the Franco-Prussian War raged and French troops were sent from Rome to the battlefield. The situation was exploited by King Victor Emmanuel II. and sent General Raffaele Cadorn to conquer Rome. Medklic, this was the father of General Luigi Cadorna, Chief of the Italian General Staff during the First World War.
A more powerful Italian army with about 50.000 troops took Lazio practically without resistance and began to approach Rome. The army of the Papal State numbered less than 15.000 soldiers. Pope Pius IX he tried unsuccessfully to organize foreign intervention and stop Italian plans, including counting on the Catholic Habsburg Monarchy. Nothing happened!
There were minor skirmishes in front of the gates of Rome, the Italian army lost 50 and the Pope's army 20 soldiers. Near Porta Pia, on September 20, 1870, the Bersalers penetrated the walls of Aurelian, which had previously been shelled by artillery, and the dream of continuing the resistance was over. The Italian tricolor also flew over Rome.
Finally, in July 1871, the Italians moved the capital from Florence to Rome. This also symbolically ended the unification of Italy. However, an irredentist movement flourished, longing for "unsaved lands" in the northeast of the new state. Our places also found themselves in the plans of Italian irredentists. But this is another story…
Today, you will find “Viale 20. septembra” (Via / Viale 20. settembre) in every major city in Italy, including Gorizia.