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The Antiquity of the Italian Nation – The Cultural Origins of a Political Myth in Modern Italy, 1796-1943 - Oxford Scholarship Online
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The Antiquity of the Italian Nation: The Cultural Origins of a Political Myth in Modern Italy, 1796-1943

Antonino De Francesco


At the beginning of the 19th century, with Italy under Napoleon, the antiquarian topic of anti-Romanism was turned against the dominant French culture and became a pillar of the nation-building process. The antiquity of the Italian nation—prior to the Roman dominion—was evoked in order to support an inveterate Italian cultural primacy and proved very useful for creating Italian nationalism. However, this topic is completely forgotten today because, at the end of the 19th century, Italian studies of Roman history, following the example of Mommsen, would drape a long veil over the period of earl ... More

Keywords: earliest Italy, anti-Romanism, nationalism, Fascism, archaeology, anthropology

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2013 Print ISBN-13: 9780199662319
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2014 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199662319.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Antonino De Francesco, author
Professor of Early Modern History, the University of Milan