Historical and Commemorative
Collection of Benjamin Weiss
RECEPTION OF VICTOR EMMANUEL II, THE KING OF SARDINIA, AT THE GUILDHALL
WYON, Benjamin: Sardinia, 1855, Bronze, 76 mm
Victor Emmanuel (1820-1878), King of Sardinia, afterwards
the first King of Italy, was the son of Charles Albert, King of Sardinia,
and Theresa, daughter of the Grand Duke Ferdinand of Tuscany. As King of
Piedmont-Sardinia, he formed an alliance with France to defeat Austria,
gaining territory from them in Northern Italy. Under the advice of Count
Cavour, Victor Emmanuel introduced many constitutional reforms, and freed
his kingdom from the power of the priests and Jesuits. He also concluded
treaties of commerce with England, established railways, and promoted free
trade. Further triumphs of the Risorgimento included the conquest of Sicily
and Naples by Giuseppe Garibaldi. As King of Italy, he acquired Venetia and
the Papal States. Rome became the new capital after French troops withdrew.
He was succeeded by his son, Umberto I.