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A history of italy during the roman empire and during the italian renaissance

The Italian Peninsula

Cities and towns throughout its length and breadth bear endless witness to this through their palaces, fortifications and archaeological parks. When united, its peoples looked abroad and carved territories for themselves from the lands of their neighbours, enriching the country and leading to a wave of opulent construction. When divided, Italy was a place of rich pickings, easily invaded from the sea by any power in possession of a Mediterranean harbour from which a fleet could be launched.

The Italian landscape is strewn with the buildings these invaders erected to secure their control and dominance over their new possessions.

Further Reading

Some of the most iconic Italian paintings, sculptures and buildings were commissioned at this time, and the seeds for a future Italian state were sown when the modern Italian language was developed by Dante Alighieri. These three periods are rightly seen as the definitive moments of Italian history, but the time in between them was a fractious and fascinating one, and this very brief overview of some of its key moments is intended to set them in a basic context: The Etruscan civilization appears in central Italy.

  • This gave Romanesque churches a heavy, solid look;
  • Renaissance politics developed from this background;
  • In 1378, the papacy returned to Rome, but that once imperial city remained poor and largely in ruins through the first years of the Renaissance;
  • Cities and towns throughout its length and breadth bear endless witness to this through their palaces, fortifications and archaeological parks;
  • The first round ends with the victory of Caesar, who is declared Dictator for Life and then assassinated.

Victory gives them control of all of central Italy. Rome defeats Carthage and seizes western Sicily, followed soon after by Sardinia and Corsica.

  • The basilican plan had been used for palaces and law courts in ancient Rome and became the model for most churches built in Italy after A;
  • Leonardo da Vinci was a master painter, sculptor, scientist, inventor, architect, engineer, and writer;
  • Two examples are the church of Sant' Ambrogio in Milan begun about 1080 and the cathedral in Pisa with its famous leaning tower built between 1174 and 1350.

Carthage invades Italy, and is only narrowly defeated. Rome seizes the rest of Sicily and begins to gain control over Spain. Rome wins, but Roman citizenship is extended to most Italians.

  • A flourishing trade in Renaissance art developed;
  • Giulio Romano, a pupil of Raphael, was a fresco painter, decorator, and architect who worked in his master's style.

The first round ends with the victory of Caesar, who is declared Dictator for Life and then assassinated. The Roman Republic has ended, and the Roman world will be ruled by Emperors until it is destroyed. Italy is divided between North and South for much of the following five centuries, and is continually invaded by Arabic forces and wracked by internal conflicts.

Italian History

At the same time, the great maritime republics of Amalfi, Pisa, Genoa and Venice begin their rise to economic and military power. When they had finished, much of Northern Italy had been devastated and foreign powers controlled much of the peninsula.

In 1866 the Venetia is annexed, and Rome is taken in 1870, becoming the official capital of the Kingdom of Italy in 1871. Having surrendered in 1943, Italy is the scene of a vicious campaign as the Germans try to hold off the advancing allied armies.

History of Italy: Primary Documents

When the war ends in 1945, much of the Centre and North of the country lies devastated. The political circus continues, but so does the tradition of innovation, development and entrepreneurship. Italy continually seems to be on the verge of one crisis or other, but continually survives, often with panache.