Mr Berkeley spent much of his time in Italy and made a life study of the whole Risorgimento. He was in touch with some of the best living authorities on the subject: 'In the course of thirty years I have met men of all parties - old Garibaldians, Piedmontese, Papal Zouaves and other survivors of the great days, and of course hundreds of a more modern date; and I have discussed every possible side of the question with them. At the same time the libraries and archives have proved a mine of information, perhaps unequalled elsewhere; for until 1860 there were nine or ten small nations in Italy each of which had its state archives'. From these sources, he and his wife have built up a composite picture of the movement for nationality and independence which shows how the Italy which Metternich considered merely 'a geographical expression' gradually became an independent nation.
Publisher: Cambridge University Press