The Kingdom of Italy (Italian: Regno d'Italia), colloquially known as Italy (Italia), is a sovereign state located along the Italian Peninsula in Southern Europe. Italy shares open land borders with Austria, France, San Marino, Switzerland, the Vatican City, and Yugoslavia. The kingdom has a largely influenced by the Alps in the north and the Mediterranean Sea in the south.
Since the fall of the Roman Empire, the Italian Peninsula has been divided into numerous states, with the most notable being the Papal States, the Kingdom of Sardinia, the Kingdom of Sicily, and the Republic of Venice. By the mid-19th Century, support for Italian Nationalism would lead to a period of wars of unification. After centuries of foreign domination and political division, Italy was virtually unified n 1871 and quickly became a great power.
The northern portions of the kingdom would rapidly industrialize, while the southern portions would remain agricultural and impoverished (resulting in a wave of emigration). By the early 20th Century, Italy had established a colonial empire with the acquisitions of Libya and Somalia. Despite siding with the Triple Entente during World War I, the kingdom entered a period of economic crisis and political turmoil. This period would see the rise of Benito Mussolini and the establishment of a fascist dictatorship in 1922. Siding with the Axis Powers during World War II, the Italian dictatorship would end in military defeat (resulting in a short-lived civil war). The monarchy was reinstated following the war and a democratic constitution adopted. Italy has since enjoyed a prolonged economic boom (despite sociopolitical turmoil still existing).
Italy is a constitutional monarchy and a parliamentary democracy. The current king of Italy is Amedeus X, who has rained since 1983 (after a bitter monarchical schism with Vittorio Emanuele).
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