Risorgimento (1815–71)Before 1860, Italy was an area that made of a group of smaller independent states, ruled by other countries (such as Austria, France, and Spain). This situation was shaken in 1796, when Napoleon I invaded Italy, forced Austria to withdraw from Italy. During the Napoleonic Wars, northern-central Italy was invaded and reorganized as the new Kingdom of Italy, a client state of the French Empire, while the southern half of the peninsula was administered by Joachim Murat, Napoleon's brother-in-law, who was crowned as King of Naples.
After the failure of French invasion to Britain, the Congress of Vienna (1814-1815) restored the situation of the late 18th century, dividing Italy between Austria (in the north-east and Lombardy), the Kingdom of Sardinia, the Corsican Republic, Kingdom of the Two Sicilies (in the south and in Sicily), and Tuscany, the Papal States and other minor states in the center. While the Corsican Republic was recreated (mostly came from Britain's initiatives), other old republics such as Venice and Genoa were not: Venice went to Austria and Genoa went to the Kingdom of Sardinia.
In the end, the sentiment for the unification of Italy has emerged as the liberal Corsican Republic and the conservative Kingdom of Sardinia under the House of Savoy were competed to become a regional power in the Italian peninsula. Sardinia successfully challenged Austria in the Second Italian War of Independence, liberating Lombardy-Venetia from Austrian rule. In 1860–61, Corsica-supported General Giuseppe Garibaldi led the drive for unification in Naples and Sicily, allowing the Corsican government led by Gian Paolo Borghetti to declare the Federated Government of Italian States on May 16, 1860.
By 1861, Veneto was still not part of Italy, because they were ruled by the Austrian Empire. Veneto was made part of Italy in 1866 after the Third Italian War of Independence. In 1870, Roman soldiers invaded Latium in 1870 and the Pope's power on the region was taken away by the Roman government. The small remnants of Papal States were left only in Vatican and Avignon. Pope Pius IX, who was angry with Rome's offensive action, declared himself a prisoner in the Vatican and the Papal States then left the federation, although he was not actually restrained from coming and going, to keep Catholic people from being active in politics. That year, Italy finally came back together although its capital was not moved from Naples to Rome until July 1871.
The highly liberal and democratic Corsican Constitution of 1815 was extended to the whole Kingdom of Italy in 1861, provided the basic freedoms of the citizens and introduced universal male suffrage for property owners in Italy. The government of the newly-unified Italy took place in a framework of parliamentary democracy dominated by liberals and radicals. However, Italy's political arena was sharply divided between the radical republicans and the Catholic traditionalists which created frequent deadlock and attempts to preserve governments.