Italy, October 2016
I already knew Italy since I visited Rome a few years ago. This trip was a discovery of the island of Sardinia, and a location for future diving trips. Departure of the ferry to Toulon, a small stop in Corsica and final arrival at Golfo Aranci in the northeast of the island. A drive to Alghero to the northwest and the final destination Porto Conto. Beautiful landscapes are offered to the eye, during this journey of a few hours. It is an island just waiting to be discovered at the option of roads and the sound of cicadas.
It is also an expanding island with hotel buildings and roads in progress that augur a road system in full swing to accommodate more and more tourists, so do not delay to discover its natural charm, and especially these friendly people. Sardinia is reminiscent of southern Corsica for its hilly landscape. The return was made by Italy, more precisely via Livorno. From there back to Pisa and the discovery of this tourist hotspot, which I discovered early in the morning. I was very lucky because the tourists were scarce then a stop in Genoa and return to Toulon. Genoa and Pisa are worth a visit and for the latter, do not hesitate to get up early if you want to take full advantage of these “stunning” places.
Before the development of Rome, Italy was composed of several cultures and civilizations, mostly Indo-European (Italic or Italic), on a Ligurian substrate of the Neolithic. On these so-called autochthonous cultures, encroached on the south, the flourishing Greek colonies of Great Greece (Syracuse, Agrigento and Selinunte), in the center, the Italic peoples, from Central Europe to the Bronze Age, close Celts, Etruscan civilization, non-Indo-European and north Venetians, Ligurians and Celts, the latter arrived later from Bohemia, occupy the plain of the Po, then called Cisalpine Gaul.
But the history of Italy that everyone knows, it is especially the apogee of Rome. This city built in the middle of the VIIth century BC, by Remus and Romulus, raised by a she-wolf told the story. The conquests of Julius Caesar, who dominated a large part of the Mediterranean basin, made Rome a great capital. Vercingetorix, our Gaulois also submitted to Julius Caesar and France, sorry, Gaul, became a Roman colony. From this period, many cities became counters: Massilia (Marseille), Carthage, … or modernized including Lutèce (Paris), The Roman remains, witnesses of this prosperous period: Aqueducts, thermal baths, Circuses, Roads. To “colonize” the countries, the soldiers of the countryside of Rome, could have a piece of land to live there like farmer or breeder.
Unfortunately, at the death of Julius Caesar, a new civil war tore apart Rome. Many emperors succeeded him: Augustus, Claude, Nero, Marcus Aurelius to quote that the most known. Meanwhile, the empire became Christianized and during the Diocletian reign of persecutions on Christians took place. Under Constantine persecutions ceased. From Rome, Christianity spreads throughout Italy. Italy was also a breeding ground for art: Michelangelo, Raphael, Galileo, … Many artists came there to learn the techniques of the great masters. The idea of the unification of Italy followed the French revolution in 1789. The Kingdom of Italy, proclaimed in 1861, started in Sardinia. The Kingdom annexed Venice in 1866, then Rome in 1870. This provoked the beginning of a fracture between the Italian State and the Church which will last until the Lateran agreements, in 1929. The form of government proclaimed is that of a constitutional monarchy, with a parliament elected by restricted suffrage. Rome became officially the capital of Italy in 1871. Neutral to the 1st World War, she sided with the Germans for the 2nd. Mussolini took power and fascism took place in Italy. In 1943, the Allies landed in Sicily and then entered southern Italy; Mussolini is overthrown and imprisoned on the orders of the king. He was killed while trying to escape. In 1946, a referendum ended the monarchy, the Italian Republic was proclaimed and the royal family was exiled.
The Vatican is the territorial support of the Holy See, enclaved in the city and the Italian capital of Rome. It is the temporal representation of all the institutions of the Roman Catholic Church.