At the Roots of Italian Identity: ‘Race’ and ‘Nation’ in the Italian Risorgimento, 1796–1870 9780367524593, 9781003058045

This book investigates the relationship between the ideas of nation and race among the nationalist intelligentsia of the

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At the Roots of Italian Identity: ‘Race’ and ‘Nation’ in the Italian Risorgimento, 1796–1870
 9780367524593, 9781003058045

Table of contents :
Cover
Half Title
Series Page
Title Page
Copyright Page
Table of Contents
Acknowledgments
Introduction
1 Prologue: the ‘primacy of the nation.’ Vincenzo Cuocoand the quest for Italian identity
2 A plural Italy? Archaeology, linguistics, and racial types in the Restoration age
3 The ‘Lombard Question’: Catholic Liberal intelligentsia and the racialization of the Romano-Germanic encounter
4 On the complexities of the Ethnogenesis: Giandomenico Romagnosi and Carlo Cattaneo on national ‘stocks’and racial ‘types’
5 Reconsidering primacy and national genealogies: ‘nation’ and ‘race’ in the debate among moderates,1843–1846
6 Epilogue and conclusions: the ‘science of nations’
Bibliography
Index

Citation preview

At the Roots of Italian Identity

This book investigates the relationship between the ideas of nation and race among the nationalist intelligentsia of the Italian Risorgimento and argues that ideas of race played a considerable role in defining Italian national identity. The author argues that the racialization of the Italians dates back to the early Napoleonic age and that naturalistic racialism—or race-thinking based on the taxonomies of the natural history of man—emerged well before the traditionally presumed date of the late 1860s and the advent of positivist anthropology. The book draws upon a wide number of sources, including the work of Vincenzo Cuoco, Giuseppe Micali, Adriano Balbi, Alessandro Manzoni, Giandomenico Romagnosi, Cesare Balbo, Vincenzo Gioberti, and Carlo Cattaneo. Themes explored include links to antiquity on the Italian peninsula, linguistics, archaeology, and race-thinking. Edoardo Marcello Barsotti is a historian of eighteenth- and nineteenthcentury nationalism in Europe and the Americas. After the completion of his MA at the University of Pisa, Italy, he received his PhD in modern history at Fordham University, New York. He currently works as a teaching associate at the Università di Genova, Italy.

Routledge Studies in the Modern History of Italy Edited by Carlotta Ferrara degli Uberti (University College London), Marco Mondini (University of Padua and Italian German Historical Institute-FBK Trent), Silvana Patriarca (Fordham University) and Guri Schwarz (University of Genoa)

The history of modern Italy from the late 18th to the 21st centuries offers a wealth of dramatic changes amidst important continuities. From occupying a semi-peripheral location in the European Mediterranean to becoming one of the major economies of the continent, the Peninsula has experienced major transformations while also facing continuing structural challenges. Social and regional conflicts, revolts and revolutions, regime changes, world wars and military defeats have defined its turbulent political history, while changing identities and social movements have intersected with the weight of family and other structures in new international environments. The series focuses on the publication of original research monographs, from both established academics and junior researchers. It is intended as an instrument to promote fresh perspectives and as bridge, connecting scholarly traditions within and outside Italy. Occasionally, it may also publish edited volumes. The sole criteria for selection will be intellectual rigour and the innovative character of the books. It will cover a broad range of themes and methods – ranging from political to cultural to socio-economic history – with the aim of becoming a reference point for groundbreaking scholarship covering Italian history from the Napoleonic era to the present. Recent titles in this series The Nation of the Risorgimento Alberto Mario Banti, translated by Stuart Oglethorpe At the Roots of Italian Identity ‘Race’ and ‘Nation’ in the Italian Risorgimento, 1796–1870 Edoardo Marcello Barsotti

For more information about this series, please visit: https://www.routledge.com

At the Roots of Italian Identity ‘Race’ and ‘Nation’ in the Italian Risorgimento, 1796–1870

Edoardo Marcello Barsotti

First published 2021 by Routledge 2 Park Square, Milton Park, Abingdon, Oxon OX14 4RN and by Routledge 52 Vanderbilt Avenue, New York, NY 10017 Routledge is an imprint of the Taylor & Francis Group, an Informa business © 2021 Edoardo Marcello Barsotti The right of Edoardo Marcello Barsotti to be identified as author of this work has been asserted by him in accordance with sections 77 and 78 of the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988. All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reprinted or reproduced or utilised in any form or by any electronic, mechanical, or other means, now known or hereafter invented, including photocopying and recording, or in any information storage or retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publishers. Trademark notice: Product or corporate names may be trademarks or registered trademarks and are used only for identification and explanation without intent to infringe. British Library Cataloguing-in-Publication Data A catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Names: Barsotti, Edoardo Marcello, author. Title: At the roots of Italian identity / Edoardo Marcello Barsotti. Description: Abingdon, Oxon ; New York, NY : Routledge, 2021. | Series: Routledge studies in the modern history of Italy | Includes bibliographical references and index. Identifiers: LCCN 2020037516 (print) | LCCN 2020037517 (ebook) | ISBN 9780367524593 (hbk) | ISBN 9781003058045 (ebk) Subjects: LCSH: Italians—Race identity—History—19th century. | Italians—Ethnic identity—History—19th century. | Nationalism—Italy—History—19th century. | National characteristics, Italian. | Intellectuals—Italy—History—19th century. | Physical anthropology—Italy—History—19th century. | Italy—History—1789–1870. Classification: LCC DG455 .B27 2021 (print) | LCC DG455 (ebook) | DDC 945/.083—dc23 LC record available at https://lccn.loc.gov/2020037516 LC ebook record available at https://lccn.loc.gov/2020037517 ISBN: 978-0-367-52459-3 (hbk) ISBN: 978-1-003-05804-5 (ebk) Typeset in Times New Roman by codeMantra

Contents

Acknowledgments Introduction 1 2 3 4

5

6

vii 1

Prologue: the ‘primacy of the nation.’ Vincenzo Cuoco and the quest for Italian identity

20

A plural Italy? Archaeology, linguistics, and racial types in the Restoration age

46

The ‘Lombard Question’: Catholic Liberal intelligentsia and the racialization of the Romano-Germanic encounter

81

On the complexities of the ethnogenesis: Giandomenico Romagnosi and Carlo Cattaneo on national ‘stocks’ and racial ‘types’

117

Reconsidering primacy and national genealogies: ‘nation’ and ‘race’ in the debate among moderates, 1843–1846

151

Epilogue and conclusions: the ‘science of nations’

199

Bibliography Index

229 243

Acknowledgments

Many people have supported and helped me in the process of writing this book. First of all, I would like to express my deep gratitude to my former supervisor Silvana Patriarca for having inspired and enthusiastically supported this project. Also, I would like to thank Carlotta Ferrara Degli Uberti, Guri Schwarz, and Francesco Cassata: this book would not exist without their unceasing support and encouragement. I am also deeply indebted to Arnaldo Testi, Don H. Doyle, Alberto M. Banti, Sal Acosta, Paul Cimbala, David Hamlin, Asif Siddiqi, Ryan Keating, Mimmo Cangiano, Stefano Villani, and Cristiana Facchini for their suggestions and encouragements. A special thanks goes to the Director of the Domus Mazziniana of Pisa, Pietro Finelli, for his invaluable mentorship over the years. Also critical to the success of this research was Edi Perino, the Director of the Archive and the Library of the Museo Nazionale del Risorgimento Italiano of Turin, for her precious help during my archival research. The translation into English of late eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century Italian sources (and prose) would have constituted a tremendous task without the insightful advice and revisions of Carlotta LaVilla and Monica Sharp. I am also deeply grateful to those colleagues and friends who have been a source of constant motivation and encouragement during the preparation of this book—in particular, Alessandro Saluppo, Alessandro Santagata, Glauco Schettini, Andrea Lazzarini, Lorenzo Mesini, Giuseppe Grieco, Urbano Tocci, Francesco Nidito, Andrea Picchi, and Margherita Alberti. Above all, I would like to thank Antonella Mangiaracina for her confidence in my capacities and her unceasing patience. As for my family, I wish to express, with this book, my love and gratitude for my sister Olimpia, my mother Patrizia, my father Giorgio, my aunt Silvia, my cousin Marco, and his son Matteo. The safety and well-being of our families and beloved ones would have been at risk without the sacrifice of the nurses and physicians who put their life on the line during the SARS Covid19 epidemic of 2020. This book is for them.

Introduction

Fragment of a beautiful virile head, carved in thin bronze foil, and diligently chiseled. […] The huge variety of heads [gathered], their diverse ages, the various hairstyles, the completely national demeanor of faces, as well as the uniformity in facial angles leave no doubt about the fact that these are real portraits: and [they are] the more important insomuch as they accurately show us the physical type of our fathers without any embellishment whatsoever. This [type] is the same of the diverse race of the Caucasus. The vertical diameter is short, and therefore the face is large; the contour of the head, if observed frontally, could be defined as square-shaped, since the cranium looks flattened at its top, and the inferior extremity of the jawbone is horizontal. The forehead is low, and the nose is aquiline with a flat basis [;] the chin [is] rounded vis-à-vis a position of the ears which are rather high (see table. Xv: 7, 8, 9). These are the principal features of the modern type of Tuscany, and, more broadly, typical of the universal Italian race. See Vol. I. p. 103.1 With this detailed description of the Etruscan ‘type,’ the archaeologist and historian Giuseppe Micali (1768–1844) attempted to demonstrate the racial continuity between the Etruscans and the modern Italians, and Tuscans in particular. This excerpt dates from 1832, but many of the terms of the ‘modern’ physiological and scientific racism, including, for example, ‘type,’ ‘Caucasian’—or even more detailed and specific anthropometric criteria such as ‘facial angle’—are already present.2 The fact that the author did not feel compelled to explain such a specific jargon testifies to the familiarity of his public—or, at least, the most educated portion of them—with the emerging natural history of man and, therefore, the ‘modern’ idea of a phenotypical ‘race.’3 Micali’s words demonstrate not only that early nineteenth-century Italian intelligentsia was already familiar with the taxonomies of the natural history of man and anthropology, but that race—intended either as ‘lineage,’ ‘stock,’ ‘bloodline,’ or, as we have seen, physical type—was already employed to ‘reconstruct’ the history of the Italian nation. This book discusses the relevance of the concept of race in the construction of Italian national identity during the Risorgimento, namely, the

2 Introduction struggle for the independence and unification of Italy, ca. 1796–1870. Specifically, it illustrates how nineteenth-century Italian intellectuals approached and discussed the theme of race in relation to the origins, evolution, and composition of the Italians. By doing so, this research will unveil the complex variation and stratification of concepts and lemmas, or, in other words, how the very idea of race changed between the late 1790s and the early 1860s. The different ways by which scholars and intellectuals explained Italian ethnogenesis—for example, whether Italians resulted from one or multiple races—revealed their theoretical and disciplinary models of reference, as well as their differing opinions on the nation-building process. As the decades progressed, race became an object of major focus, to the point of being considered, along with language, the most important marker of nationality. I argue that race was crucial for the identification of who was within and, conversely, without the nation because it represented the historical and biological development of the national community. Furthermore, by projecting the concept of national identity into the remotest past, race served as an essential tool for the legitimization of Italian nationhood in the present. I maintain that, as time passed, the newer taxonomies of linguistics and, most of all, the natural history of man gradually superseded the traditional understandings like ‘lineage’ and ‘stock’ inherited from the Classics and the Bible. Yet, this ‘epidermalization’ of the idea of race did not prevent the absorption in the newer categories of older attributions (inherited psycho-moral, cultural, and linguistic traits attributed to the older ‘stocks’).4 Accordingly, I contend that the new naturalistic understandings of race tended to overlap with and absorb older understandings, and that the emergence of modern racial paradigms in the Peninsula, far from being a sudden ‘turn’ taking place in the late 1860s, should be antedated by at least twenty years. Italian historians have long considered race—along with other biological and biopolitical elements in imagining the Italian nation—a tangential component in Risorgimento nationalism. Bound by a view of race intended as a physical taxonomy of naturalistic racialism, they credited the birth of a (belated) interest in race and racialism in Italy in the late 1860s on the advent of positivist anthropology. Even the new cultural history of the Risorgimento, which has successfully demonstrated the significance of naturalistic and biological criteria in the construction of national identity, has failed to relate the process of ‘biologization’ of the idea of nation to the articulation of a full-fledged racial ideologies and discourses. The evidence gathered in this research suggests that such a process, taking shape in major European countries at least since the early 1830s, also occurred in the Peninsula. This study contends that in spite of the traditional vision of a ‘race-blind’ Risorgimento, the nationalist debate over the ‘first Italians’ fueled a nationwide interest in race and racialism well before Positivism and the encounter with the exotic colonial ‘other.’ The progressive excavation into the most remote chapters of the national past triggered the adoption of new theoretical and methodological

Introduction  3 approaches, as well as new disciplines. As we will see, it was not coincidental that the central decades of the Risorgimento experienced the flourishing of historiographical, archaeological, and, most of all, linguistic, and ‘ethnological’ studies. We might even say that the more scholars and intellectuals penetrated the remotest ages of national history, the more their analysis privileged the ‘positive fact’ of race, increasingly reduced to its ‘natural’ and ‘corporeal’ dimension. Thus, even if the study of the Classics, etymologies, or history gradually gave way to linguistics, dialectology, and craniology, these different theoretical and methodological approaches still aimed to respond to the same questions: who were the Italians and when and whence they originated.

Race and nationality in Risorgimento historiography In spite of a thriving tradition of studies aiming at exploring every aspect— even the most controversial—of the Italian unification, race has remained an almost completely unexplored chapter of Risorgimento history. Such a gap might be explained by several factors: first of all, the inclusion of the struggle for Italian unification in the broader history of nineteenth- century Liberalism.5 Accordingly, scholars have perhaps considered a movement inspired by universalistic and egalitarian principles as immune from any interest in race typical of fin-de-siècle authoritarian nationalism and twentieth-century far-right ideologies like Fascism. It was perhaps also the fascist ‘appropriation’ of Italian nationalism and its emphasis on the dyad nation-race, which led the anti-fascist historian Federico Chabod to assert that one of the most distinguishing features of Risorgimento nationalism was its ‘voluntaristic’ understanding of nation. For him, the liberal- democratic ethos inherited from the French Revolutionary experience prevented the development of a ‘naturalistic’ blut und boden understanding of national identity typical of German ‘reactionary’ nationalism.6 The political undertones of Chabod’s thesis appear particularly evident, as his dichotomy between a concept of national identity open to a constant redefinition by a collective voluntary pact on the one side and an ‘ascriptive’ one—that is, racially and ethnically based—on the other can be read as an attempt to ‘rescue’ Italian nationalism from the ‘usurpation’ by fascist ideology and its cult of race.7 This legitimate but, in a certain sense, excessively schematic defense of the Risorgimento liberal-democratic nature could explain why Chabod’s thesis proved so lasting. Alberto Mario Banti has perceptively noted that postwar historians focused on almost every political, economic, and social aspect of the Risorgimento and national unification, and they never questioned Chabod’s thesis by interrogating the very nature of the Italian nation as it was actually imagined and propagated by nineteenth-century nationalists.8 Even very recently, Maurizio Viroli argued that democratic leaders, such as Giuseppe Mazzini, did not consider any ethnic or racial element when conceiving or legitimizing the Italian

4 Introduction nation. In the footsteps of Chabod, Viroli affirms that the democratic leader Mazzini had a typical democratic and ‘voluntaristic’ conception of nation.9 Similarly, Franco Della Peruta asserts that ideas like race, stock, blood, or territory played no significant role in Mazzini’s image of an Italian nation.10 For his part, Sergio La Salvia concedes that the Risorgimento intelligentsia manifested a keen interest in race, while maintaining that the shaping of a nationwide debate about race was made possible only with the diffusion of Positivism in the late 1860s and 1870s.11 Even today, a sort of ‘Chabodian’ conditioning seems to prevent some scholars from further analyzing the ‘biologization’ of the idea of nation during the Risorgimento, not to mention the development of racial discourses.12 As Silvana Patriarca persuasively observes, Banti’s approach put an end to an entrenched ‘unproblematic approach’ to the theme of the nation by illustrating that the naturalistic components in the nineteenth-century Italian’s idea of a nation were pervasive and by no means negligible.13 Banti demonstrates that whether Catholic or anti-clerical, monarchical or republican, democratic or moderate, all of the Risorgimento’s patrioti consistently referred to the nation as a ‘natural’ community bonded by ‘blood.’ Even more pervasive was the trope representing the national community as an extended family whose kinships were far from being merely metaphorical. There was, in fact, an evident biological connotation in this conception of the nation as an extended family embracing not only all modern Italians but also their ancestors. In this outlook, the nation ceased to exist as a simple political collectivity and become, as Banti underlines, a proper ‘community of descent’ perpetuating itself across centuries.14 Not by coincidence, romantic authors did not hesitate to portray the entire Italian history as a prefiguration of their struggle for unification and independence.15 It was, in a certain sense, inevitable that in these reconstructions the concept of race— whether understood as ‘stock,’ ‘lineage,’ or ‘bloodline’—played a considerable role. According to Banti, the connection of a given nation to a land and a lineage proved particularly effective in strengthening the reification of the nation as a concrete and natural entity.16 It appears evident, therefore, that Banti has provided us with new important perspectives through which to further investigate the intimate intertwining of ideas of nation and race in the Risorgimento.17 Other scholars, however, have questioned Banti’s thesis of the romantic nation as a biopolitical community by pointing out the polysemy of terms such as ‘family,’ ‘stock,’ ‘lineage,’ and, most of all, ‘race,’ as well as their function in the political semantics of the Revolutionary and Restoration ages. In their opinion, the reference to ‘races’ and ‘stocks’ in early nineteenthcentury European political discourse should not be strictly interpreted as a proof of an ethno-racial understanding of the nation. Rather, they served as an essential rhetorical tool for the legitimization of a political subject in revolt or a new nationhood/statehood.18 For example, Martin Thom argues that reference to ‘races’ or ‘stocks’ was functional to the illustration of the

Introduction  5 conflict between commoners and aristocracy, and that, among other things, even an intellectual particularly interested in ethnography such as Carlo Cattaneo refuted the idea of a substantial continuity between the ancient populations and the modern nationalities.19 Certainly, the refutation, or at least, the calling into question of the findings of the culturalist approach, might also grow out of a dissatisfaction with the interpretations apparently downplaying the political context while overstating the role of language in structuring ideas and thought. For example, the emphasis posed by Banti on a discursive morphological continuity between Risorgimento nationalism and Fascism can be criticized for its apparent neglect of the evolving political scenery and, therefore, meanings.20 Nonetheless, by treating concepts like stock, lineage, and race as purely rhetorical tools, an approach based on the mere analysis of political ideologies fails to explain an evident fact: that is, when nineteenth-century nationalists were determined to define or legitimize a national community, they typically resorted to elements like blood, family, lineage, stock, and race. In short, by following this model, we risk running into a sort of heuristic cul-de-sac: terms like descent, lineage, or race are used in their literal and stricter meaning, but we fail to acknowledge it because we argue for their ‘metaphorical’ usage according to our own previous assumptions about eighteenth- and nineteenth-century political discourse.21 Late eighteenth- and nineteenth-century Italian nationalist authors extensively resorted to terms like stock and race when they aimed at rendering the corporeality of the idea of nation and its biological continuity across time. Antonino De Francesco has illustrated how since the French invasion of Italy in 1796—with the term nation undergoing a semantic evolution from its older polysemy to indicating the fundamental community embodying the new source of sovereignty—ethnographic research and the debate over Italian statehood were woven together.22 De Francesco demonstrates that this quest for the ‘first Italians’—which would only terminate with the tragic demise of the fascist regime in World War II—resulted in the production of several, often conflicting theories reflecting a plurality of cultural models and opinions on national unification. Accordingly, as he reminds us, although Risorgimento culture increasingly focused on the search for an Italian race (or races), historians should forgo hypothesizing the linear development of a single coherent narrative of Italian identity.23 Another aspect that has caught scholars’ attention has been the stereotyping—if not the proper racialization—of Southern Italians by eighteenth- and nineteenth-century authors. Nelson Moe illustrates how the character of the inhabitants of an imaginary ‘South’—first encompassing the entire Peninsula and, later, the modern Mezzogiorno—was often described by relying on geographical determinism. Although Moe is less effective in explaining how Southern élites themselves contributed or countered the development of this stereotype, he manages to show how imagining Southern Italy as a proper ethnic ‘other’ proved enduring throughout the

6 Introduction Risorgimento.24 Similarly, Aliza Wong argues that different conceptions of race contributed to the Italian nationalist discourse in liberal Italy from 1861 to 1911. As she contends, the issues faced by the Italian ruling classes in incorporating the ‘backward’ South into the modern nation-state and the subsequent colonialist enterprise animated a public debate embracing different understandings of race.25 Yet, Wong’s emphasis on a multifaceted discourse seems contradicted by her claim that post-unification anthropology shares a common stereotype of the Southerners as a racially irredeemable social group.26 One may object that although a similar language might suggest a common understanding of race, Italian anthropologists by no means constituted a uniform block sharing the same opinion on the origins of the nation, or on the causes and the remedies regarding the Southern Question. While the adoption of an Orientalist approach can effectively explain the discursive framing of a Southern ‘other,’ an excessive reliance on the ‘othering’ paradigm might induce scholars to ignore the fact that very few intellectuals in Risorgimento Italy ended up seriously questioning the ‘Italianness’ of the South (let alone that these concerns over a Southern ‘other’ never materialized in policies comparable to the colonial rule in Eastern Africa).27 Maria Sophia Quine reminds us that the primary purpose of Risorgimento anthropology was in fact to serve as a ‘science of man’ for the progress and unification of the Italian nation, rather than a mere marginalization of the Southerners.28 She argues that in order to legitimize the ongoing process of unification, Italian ‘ethnologists’ focused their fundamental concern with the reconstruction of the genealogical tree of the Italian nation by grounding it in solid historical, linguistic, and anthropometric facts.29 In this context, a racial theory like Aryanism was mostly employed to demonstrate the homogeneity of the Italians as an ‘ethnographically unified people,’ and a ‘one and indivisible nation’ rather than to denote a Northern superiority.30 Moreover, for democratic scientists, anthropology constituted an essential tool for the prospective regeneration of the Italian people. In such a perspective, Quine shows that anthropology was intended to contribute to the ‘making of the Italians’ from a principally biological standpoint, and that, by doing so, scientists like Paolo Mantegazza moved the discipline very close to the twentieth-century eugenics.31 According to Quine, the optimistic belief in the ameliorative function of anthropology (as well as the absence of any negative racial stereotype) seemed to vanish toward the end of the century as disenchantment with the liberal state grew. In that period, a highly deterministic and pessimistic branch of anthropology began to develop, stressing atavistic deficiencies and denying any possibility of correction and improvement.32 Yet, even in this new climate of disappointment with Liberalism, not all thinkers eagerly embraced theories claiming the irreversibility of certain negative traits—and, therefore, the irredeemable inferiority of a given human group—nor uncritically accepted studies supporting the racial non-homogeneity of Italians.33 Actually, some progressive anthropologists

Introduction  7 were primarily concerned with denouncing the shortcomings of the liberal state in finding workable solutions to Italy’s unresolved social problems, rather than theorizing and legitimizing a strategy of exclusion and criminalization of Southerners or other social groups.34 In short, Quine’s analysis of the complex and the often contradictory dimension of the nineteenth-century debate on race and ethnicity echoes Patriarca’s emphasis on the profound tensions and contradictions, as well as ‘remarkable ambiguities,’ which characterized the Risorgimento discourse on race and ethnicity.35 After all, as Patriarca points out in illustrating the relationship between race and nation in the Risorgimento, there existed no broad consensus over the racial origins of Italians, nor over the role of race in defining the Italians. Most of all, intellectuals and scholars disagreed over the actual definition of the term race itself. Amid these uncertainties, however, it appears evident from the historiography, fiction, statistics, and ethnography of the era that the notions of nation and race were intertwined well before the institutionalization of anthropology during Positivism.36 Race seemed one of the most suitable criteria to be employed when the proponents of nationhood aimed to draw clear and ‘objective’ boundaries to the Italian nationality.37 In this discursive context, as Patriarca points out, what should be of interest is not whether this use of race resulted in racism, but the mechanism laying at the core of such use. Drawing on Etienne Balibar’s concept of a ‘fictive ethnicity,’ Patriarca argues that nationalism tends to create an ‘ideal nation,’ which is deemed the essential base for nationhood, and whose foundations usually rely on criteria such as the dyad language-culture, and, not surprisingly, race.38 From this perspective, all types of nationalism—even the most ‘democratic’ and ‘inclusive’—can potentially degenerate into racism, since race rests at the core of their conceptualization of nation. Accordingly, by also acknowledging an implicit Eurocentrism affecting the whole political spectrum, any dichotomy between a ‘good,’ ‘race-free’ patriotism as opposed to an ‘evil’ and ‘racist’ nationalism proves unfounded. Rather, scholars should approach the nineteenth-century discourse on race and nation by contemplating argumentative and rhetoric requirements in framing the principle of nationality within their coeval cultural context. Therefore, rather than necessarily striving to reconstruct coherent theories, or unilinear phylogeneses leading directly to Fascism, scholars should delve into the inconsistencies, the cul-de-sac, or even into the unintended effects in the discourse over race. In such a light, as Patriarca concludes, scholars could cast additional light on our knowledge of Risorgimento nationalism, as well as on the transition from Unification to the colonialist nation-state.39

Concepts, methodologies, and sources This book builds on some of the questions raised by the researches of Patriarca, Quine, De Francesco, and Banti, and intends to fill a considerable gap

8 Introduction in the historiography of Italian nationalism. I investigate the ‘community of descent’ as highlighted by Banti in a new light, attempting to unveil, beyond the vaguer references to blood, kinship, or common heritage, the influence of coeval linguistics, ethnography, and, of course, physical anthropology. I examine the different understandings of race and ethno-racial theories (as suggested by Quine and De Francesco) considering their political, but, also, theoretical and disciplinary contexts of development. By doing so, we will hopefully avoid the pitfalls of a presentist emphasis on the alleged continuities between the Risorgimento discourse on race and twentieth-century racialism and racism. In my analysis, I intend to approach the ‘tensions and contradictions’ highlighted by Patriarca as the result of the stratification of older and newer understandings of race. As this work will hopefully demonstrate, the process of racialization of the Italians, which dates back to the inception of Italian nationalism in the Revolutionary age, underwent several modifications reflecting not only the evolution of the political context, but also the development of new forms of cultural and scientific models of reference. Drawing on the methods of cultural and intellectual history and the analysis of discourse, my research examines concepts which convey the idea of descent, as well as the transmission of culturally acquired or biologically inherited traits. These include, of course, lemmas like razza (race), but also ceppo (stock), stirpe (lineage), famiglia (family), as well as varietà (variety), tipo (type), classe (class), and many others. Such an approach rests on the theoretical premise that asserts that a racialization process always relies on the idea of the transmission or inheritability of certain traits—whether genotypical, phenotypical, psycho-moral, cultural, linguistic, etc.—between generations.40 I am aware that such an approach may lead to a somewhat reductionist understanding of race, and dismiss some of the models identifying the essence of racism in the discriminatory intent, rather than in a coherent (or, at least, systematized) racial/racialist discourse.41 Although the elaboration of racial theories has been, in the course of history, accompanied by racist discourses or practices (or vice-versa), the primary focus of this book is on the relationship between the ideas of nation and race in the Risorgimento, and, therefore, on the modalities of construction of a national genealogy in the light of coeval cultural, scientific, and political developments. Conversely, by focusing on the process and practices of marginalization, stereotyping, and ‘othering,’ we may risk overlooking the development of a racial and racialist discourse and theories that were au courant with the ongoing and thriving European debate on linguistics, ethnography, and, of course, physical anthropology. In other words, by focusing on the broader phenomenon of racism, we would end up ignoring the different understandings of race and their phylogenesis in Italian early nineteenth-century culture and nationalism. This focus on the very meaning of race is also motivated by the necessity of reconstructing its polysemy, fluctuations, and, therefore, its implications

Introduction  9 for the broader cultural and political arena. One significant aspect concerns, for example, the understanding of race as an immutable condition subjected, among other things, to clear atavistic dynamics. At the same time, I paid equal attention to the view of race as a modifiable and amendable condition due to genetic, environmental, and societal factors.42 These concerns are motivated also by the constant association (or conflation) of the notions of race with terms denoting a social, cultural, and family affiliation. Again, interpretative models stressing the interplay between different categories of identification—such as race, nation, class, gender—prove extremely useful because they facilitate the reconstruction of the evolution, and, therefore, the historicization of terms and ideas.43 Also for these reasons, this work forgoes hypothesizing a unilinear conceptual evolution of the term race throughout the period being analyzed.44 That being said, my research, although focusing on the different understandings of race, aims to examine its polysemy and semantic evolution in relation to the construction of Italian national identity. In other words, I did not produce a full-fledged analysis on race and racialism in nineteenthcentury Italian culture, but, rather a study of the process of racialization of the Italian nation and its people during the nation-building process. A comprehensive work on race and racism during the Risorgimento would have entailed a dramatic expansion of our chronological arch, not to mention the significant increase and further diversification of the sources and the methodologies employed. For example, to trace with extreme precision exactly when and how the new naturalistic understandings of race superseded (or conflated) with the older ones of lineage or stock would dictate a further expansion of this research to all fields of knowledge dating back at least to central decades of the Italian Enlightenment. The term razza (race) associated with particular—and, if we may add, ‘exotic’—physical features is already present in eighteenth-century Italian sources.45 When it comes, however, to the definition of the Italians as an ethnic group, there seems to be lacking any significant amount of evidence. Perhaps a future investigation into the Italian naturalistic, and, most of all, medical and anatomical works of the Enlightenment and Napoleonic ages might help to shed some light on the evolution and emergence of the ‘modern’ naturalistic racialism in the Peninsula.46 Also, a broader investigation of geographical and statistical sources might also enable us to gain a better understanding of how the percolation of racialist taxonomies contributed to the ethnographic definition of the Italians.47 In sum, a study on the theme of race and nation during the nationbuilding age can offer considerable insights into the entire modern Italian history. After all, the struggle for the independence and unification of Italy preceded the onset of Italian colonialism by just a few years, which may call forth the question of how the Risorgimento debate about Italian identity could have affected late nineteenth-century scientific racism. It is also understandable that the recent recrudescence of racism—often in the form of

10 Introduction the so-called ‘racism without race’—encourages scholars to ‘get to the roots’ of the phenomenon by analyzing conceptualizations of Italian identity in the crucial years of nation-building.48 Nonetheless, research identifying a fil rouge uniting the Risorgimento with current forms of racism might end up overshadowing the extreme complexity offered by the coexistence of diverse racial discourses in a specific historical context. Similarly, an investigation of race in the Risorgimento aiming at explaining colonial racism—although extremely appealing from a retrospective standpoint—may risk projecting on the early nineteenth-century the political concerns and racial theories of the Age of Imperialism, and, in particular, the fin-de-siècle crisis of Liberalism and its exacerbation of the ‘othering’ of specific groups of peoples (e.g. Southerners, Africans, ‘anti-social’ elements, and more).49 Conversely, this work, rather than illustrating the stereotyping of the ‘other,’ focuses, as we have said, on the construction on the ‘self’—the Italians—and, therefore, the making of a national genealogy when the project of an Italian nation was not only discussed, but actually implemented for the first time. In this context, the search for the origin and the identity of the Italians acquired paramount importance because the rise of a new political subject—the nation-state—mandated the identification of the collective ‘body’ to legitimize it. In this outlook, we are compelled to adhere to the traditional chronological timespan of the Risorgimento (from approximately the 1790s to 1860s) to observe how the search for the ‘first Italians’ evolved with the ongoing cultural and scientific trends. The Napoleonic period (ca. 1796–1814) provides a terminus a quo for the study of the evolution of the concept of nation in its modern understanding, that is, a fundamental community embodying the source of sovereignty. In these years, the ‘patriotic’ authors revived the antiquarian debate over an alleged ‘Italian’ superior civilization preceding the classical Greek world and positing a substantial ethno-racial continuity of the Italian ‘stocks’ since the prehistoric age. In the outlook of national regeneration, this quest for a pristine national identity was then re-elaborated and tied to the broader discussion about the development of a peculiar Italian cultural heritage, but also older and new theories concerning the ethnogeneses of the populations of the Peninsula. This period, which coincided with central decades of the Risorgimento (ca. 1810–1850), was characterized by the expansion of new ‘ethnological’ disciplines such as comparative linguistics and the natural science of man, which were widely employed for the development of diverse discourses of race aiming at defining ‘objective’ boundaries of the prospective national community. However, in spite of different theoretical and methodological approaches, the main scholarly and intellectual concern was represented by the quest for the ‘first Italians,’ and, therefore, the analysis of ancient sources, iconography, artifacts, and, especially in the 1850s, osteological remains. This quest for the racial ‘roots’ of Italy would become less relevant in the 1860s, with the achievement of national unification and the emergence

Introduction  11 of new theories and paradigms in the ethno-anthropological disciplines. The diffusion of Positivism and, in particular, of Darwinian evolutionism would put into question older schemes and approaches in the search of human ‘races’ by privileging, among other things, the investigation of the ‘living’ body, at the expense of the ‘inert’ osteological remains. Most of all, in the political issues faced in the process of consolidation of the new state, certain models and narratives turned up being not wholly compatible with the reality, especially in light of the issues faced in incorporating the South into the newly centralized nation-state. In these predicaments, a new dispute questioning the plausibility of these ethno-racial narratives started to develop and new theoretical and disciplinary responses were elaborated. Accordingly, it is possible to identify in the 1860s the terminus ad quem of our research due to the new political challenges that the completion of the nation-building process presented. One might object that this periodization strictly hinges on the political debate over the Italian nation and the outcome of unification. A chronological arch, however, based on the evolution of racial thought in the 1860s, or on the transition from the 1850s ethnology to the post-1869 ‘official’ anthropology would prove extremely difficult for the broader conceptual and methodological framework that it would have required. For similar reasons, this work excludes a multidisciplinary approach that aims to explore aiming the relationship between nation and race in a broader socio-cultural perspective. In other words, this research does not investigate the reception and the popularity of ideas on race, and therefore provides no broader history of racism as a sociopolitical phenomenon or movement in nineteenth-century Italy. Rather, I have reconstructed the debate on race and nation within the national-patriotic discursive constellation and, accordingly, analyzed a group of scholars and intellectuals selected for their relevance in the Risorgimento debate over the Italian identity. The research has mostly relied on a wide array of published sources, including political pamphlets and treatises, historiography, ethnology, geography, statistics, as well as the first anthropological publications in the1850s and 1860s, and, to a lesser extent, on archival documentation. The analysis focuses, to reiterate, on how certain significant lemmas were utilized and evolved according to the different contexts.50 I am aware of the limits of contextualism, in particular its alleged arbitrary partition of time in ‘segmented’ contexts, or additionally, its simplification of the gap between intention, textual meaning, and reception.51 Nonetheless, it can be properly said that, far from denying the transcendence of ideas, the nineteenth-century Italian debate regarding race can be approached as a truly different semantic ‘other,’ whose boundaries are conditioned not only by recognizable political intents, but also by the affirmation of specific discipline and theoretical models. As for another context of this research, that is, its focus on Italy, I acknowledge that race and racism represent the most suitable topics for a transnational approach, especially

12 Introduction in an age like the nineteenth century, where the development of racial paradigms was the result of a transnational network of scientists and scholars. Nonetheless, given the pioneering nature of this research, for the moment I chose to focus on the Italian-speaking domain without neglecting, of course, those foreign contributions which profoundly affected the Italian debate over the origins of the nation, as well as the development in the Peninsula of the ethno-anthropological disciplines.52

Structure of the book This book is composed of six chapters, with the first and the sixth chapters serving, respectively, as a prologue and an epilogue. Our journey into the development of a racial discourse begins with Vincenzo Cuoco (1770–1823) and his thesis of a substantial ethnic homogeneity of the Italian nation resulting from the prehistoric settlement of the legendary ‘Pelasgians,’ and the consolidation, in the entire Peninsula, of an ‘Etruscan-Pelasgian’ empire. Cuoco understands race as a full-fledged ‘proto-nation,’ and, although it never discloses any visible physical connotation, it conveys the idea of a substantial transmission and inalterability across millennia of moral and ethnocultural traits. The making of the ‘physical’ race is, however, the object of the second chapter, devoted to the archaeologist and historian Giuseppe Micali (1768– 1844) and the geographer and statistician Adriano Balbi (1782–1848). Micali’s 1832 monograph on pre-Roman Italy marks the grand entry of physical anthropology, and, in particular, of typological racialism in the reconstruction of national history. The concept of racial type in particular, by postulating the existence of national morphological specificities, enabled a proper visual identification of the Italian community of descent. This increasing interest in race as a physical marker is exemplified by the research of Balbi, who can be considered one of the first ‘systematizers’ and popularizers of the natural history of man, physical anthropology, and comparative linguistics in the Peninsula. Balbi himself appears to be one of the first intellectuals who attempted to establish a clear methodological divide between the study of languages on the one side and the reconstruction of biological descent on the other. This interest in the new emerging ethnographic disciplines seems not to characterize some of the key-figures of Catholic Romanticism, whom I examine in Chapter 3. In dealing with the issue of the alleged ‘fusion’ between Romano-Italics and Germanic invaders during the early middle ages, the writer Alessandro Manzoni (1785–1873) and the historians Carlo Troya (1784–1858) and Gino Capponi (1792–1876) appear skeptical of the epistemological dignity of linguistics and the natural history of man. Yet, such a dismissive attitude of the new approaches does not prevent them from racializing European history through a systematic conflation of linguistic and biological descent, and from positing the persistence of two

Introduction  13 distinct races—the Latins and the Germanics—with their own cultural and ­psycho-moral peculiarities. Chapter 4 focuses on the research activity on the Italic past by the liberal polymath Giandomenico Romagnosi (1761–1835) and his pupil, the democratic intellectual Carlo Cattaneo (1801–1869). I will focus, in particular, on their critique of Romantic mythopoeses that wrongly subsumed linguistic and physical descent to create ‘pure’ national lineages. In their case, the natural history of man, and, in particular, typological racialism, is employed to criticize the idea of purely autochthonous ethno-genetic and civilizational processes. In this perspective, the type ceases to be the evidence of a pure ‘bloodline’ to become a mere marker of geographical provenance devoid of any cultural or linguistic and, therefore, national, characterization. To sum, with Romagnosi and Cattaneo, it is possible to observe the defense, and, to a certain extent, the exaltation of Italian national identity, but the natural history of man, and, in particular, typological racialism seem to be safeguarded from the intrusion of nationalism. The intimate interplay between politics and racial theories is examined in Chapter 5, which covers the debate over the prospective Italian nationhood among influential figures of Risorgimento conservative Liberalism such as Vincenzo Gioberti (1801–1852), Cesare Balbo (1789–1853), and G ­ iacomo Durando (1807–1894). In all authors, the preference for a confederate system (instead of a unitary nation-state) is predicated on the recognition of the profound regional differences of Italy engendered by the presence, since pre-Roman times, of different ‘races’ and ‘stocks.’ The apparently irreconcilable fracture between the idea of a common Italian identity and the racial diversity of the Peninsula is resolved through the adoption of theories positing the origins of the ancestors of the Italians from the same European ethno-genetic epicenter, and their eventual diversification into smaller subgroups by the time of their settlement in the Peninsula. The ‘fact’ or race acquires in this debate a paramount dimension, and the jargon adopted to facilitate this dialogue reveals the increasing affirmation of the taxonomies of comparative linguistics and the natural history of man; however, as we will see, these taxonomies were framed within the older biblical and classical narratives over the origin of humankind. If the 1840s still represent an age of different narratives and paradigms, the 1850s mark the definitive emergence of the modern ‘science of nations’ and the epilogue of our analysis. It is in these years that the idea of nationality is essentialized into the result of the interaction of the ‘moral’ aspect of language with the ‘physiological’ dimension of race. The latter term, in particular, finally assumes its ‘modern’ understanding as a physical marker by incorporating and superseding older meanings like ‘lineage’ or ‘stock.’ By this time, the anthropologist Giustiniano Nicolucci (1819–1904) and the linguist Giovenale Vegezzi-Ruscalla (1799–1885) attempt to systematize the ‘ethnological’ discipline and introduce Aryanism in the Peninsula focusing on linguistic and craniological inquiries over the ‘first Italians.’ With the

14 Introduction completion, however, of national unification in the early 1860s, studies on race seem to shift from the mere search of the origin of the nation to increasingly focus on the nation-building process. In a new mindset increasingly influenced by Positivism and Darwinian evolutionism, Italian anthropology offered its service to the amelioration of the ‘living’ bodies, rather than the study of the relics of the past. In this new outlook, the search for the racial ‘roots’ of the nation did not cease completely, but became a corollary to the more cogent needs of ‘making the Italians.’

Notes 1 Giuseppe Micali, Storia degli antichi popoli italiani (Florence: Tipografia all’Insegna di Dante, 1832), 3:10–12 (emphasis added). 2 It was only during the 1850s and 1860s, with the emergence of the positivist paradigm, that the craniological and anthropometric taxonomies affirmed with the natural history of man in the eighteenth century ended up prevailing and characterizing the vision of race as a human phenotype. See Richard McMahon, The Races of Europe: Construction of the National Identities in Social Sciences, 1839–1939 (London: Palgrave McMillan, 2016), 5–29. The adjective ‘physiological’ is borrowed from Anthony Pagden’s definition of eighteenth- and nineteenth-century naturalistic racism/racialism as ‘true physiological racism’; that is a paradigm that classifies and explains external physical differences as a result of the ‘internal’ processes inherent in the physiology of different human ‘types’ or ‘varieties.’ See Anthony Pagden, “The Peopling of the New World: Ethnos, Race, and Empire in the Early-Modern World,” in The Origins of Racism in the West, eds. Miriam Eliav-Feldon, Benjamin Isaac, and Joseph Ziegler (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2009), 306. 3 Terms like ‘family,’ ‘stock,’ ‘lineage,’ ‘blood,’ ‘race’—as well as the term ‘character’ when used to indicate the alleged psycho-moral traits of a given community—reflect the eighteenth- and nineteenth-century language and are crucial elements for an appropriate historical narrative. The discredit into which these terms have fallen in scientific and political circles would impose the use of quotation marks, which, however, would end up weighing the text down even further. For this reason, I decided to reduce, as far as possible, the use of quotation marks without prejudice to my absolute critical distance. 4 I borrow this expression from a well-known essay on eighteenth-century racial thought: see William M. Nelson, “Making Men: Enlightenment Ideas of Racial Engineering,” The American Historical Review 115, no. 5 (December 2010): 1388. 5 I am aware that such a definition might appear simplistic for the Italian setting due to the renowned division between the ‘moderates’ and the ‘democrats.’ For further information, Franco Della Peruta, I democratici e la rivoluzione italiana. Dibatti ideali e contrasti politici all’indomani del 1848 (Milan: Feltrinelli, 1958); Franco Della Peruta, Conservatori, liberali e democratici nel Risorgimento (Milan: FrancoAngeli, 1989); Marco Meriggi, “Liberali/liberalismo,” in Atlante culturale del Risorgimento. Lessico del linguaggio politico dal Settecento all’Unità, eds. Alberto M. Banti, Antonio Chiavistelli et al. (Rome: Laterza, 2011), 104–114; Antonio Chiavistelli, “Moderati/Democratici,” in Atlante Culturale del Risorgimento, 115–133. As for the ‘troubled relationship’ between nineteenth-century Liberalism and its universalistic claims, it is necessary to mention the work of Jennifer Pitts, who traces the development of a pro-imperialistic and inegalitarian attitude among British and French liberal thinkers in the 1840s–1860s. See Jennifer Pitts, A Turn to Empire: The Rise of Imperial Liberalism in Britain and France (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2005).

Introduction  15 6 See Federico Chabod, L’idea di nazione, 3rd ed. (Rome: Laterza, 1974), 68; Alberto M. Banti, La nazione del Risorgimento. Parentela, santità e onore alle origini dell’Italia Unita (Turin: Einaudi, 2000), 56. 7 The reference is, of course to Federico Chabod, L’idea di nazione, 68. See also Silvana Patriarca, “Le relazioni pericolose: ‘razza’ e ‘nazione’ nel Risorgimento,” in La costruzione dello stato-nazione in Italia, ed. Adriano Roccucci (Rome: Viella, 2012), 110; Maurizio Viroli, Per amore della patria. Patriottismo e nazionalismo nella storia (Rome: Laterza, 1995); Franco Della Peruta, “La nazione dei democratici,” in Nazioni, nazionalità, stati nazionali nell’Ottocento europeo. Atti del XLI Congresso di Storia del Risorgimento Italiano, ed. Umberto Levra (Rome: Carocci, 2004), 113–115. 8 Banti, La nazione del Risorgimento, ix. 9 Patriarca has suggested that Viroli aims at reintroducing Mazzini’s nationalism as a valid model of patriotism for modern Italian society, whose alleged lack of civic and national conscience has been one of the central subjects of the national public debate in the late 1990s. See Patriarca, “Le relazioni pericolose,” 110–111. For an overview of this debate see Silvana Patriarca, Italian Vices: Nation and Character from the Risorgimento to the Republic (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010), 1–19. As for Mazzini and race, Alain Goussot argues that an overarching element of Mazzini’s thought was its ‘critique of any form of discrimination.’ Certainly, Mazzini was a committed anti-slavery and anti-racist thinker. Yet, a committed anti-racism does not theoretically exclude the reference to race as an essential element in distinguishing and defining human groups. See Alain Goussot, “Alcune tappe della critica al razzismo: le riflessioni di G. Mazzini, N. Colajanni, A. Ghisleri,” in Nel nome della razza: il razzismo nella storia d’Italia 1870–1945, ed. Alberto Burgio (Bologna: Il Mulino, 1999), 133. 10 Della Peruta, “La nazione dei democratici,” 113–115. 11 Sergio La Salvia, “La costruzione della nazione. Il contributo della tradizione moderata,” in Nazioni, nazionalità, stati nazionali nell’Ottocento europeo, 129–171. 12 Even in very recent articles, some Italian scholars question Banti’s thesis. In addition, they seem to downplay any interest in race among the Risorgimento intelligentsia, or, at most, they argue for a non-biological understanding of race. See, in particular, Enrico Artifoni, “Le questioni longobarde: osservazioni su alcuni testi del primo Ottocento storiografico italiano,” Mélanges de l’Ecole française de Rome. Moyen Age 119, no. 2 (2007): 297–304; Stefano Gensini, “Lingua, nazione e razza nei dibattiti italiani della prima metà dell’Ottocento,” Studi filosofici 34 (2011): 215–241; Fabio Di Giannatale, “Il principio di nazionalità. Un dibattito nell’Italia Risorgimentale,” Storia e politica 4, no. 2 (2014): 234–269. 13 Patriarca, “Relazioni pericolose,” 109. For a thorough discussion of Banti’s contribution, see Nations and Nationalism 15, no. 3 (July 2009): 375–556. 14 For a further reading, see Alberto M. Banti, “La nazione come comunità di discendenza: aspetti del paradigma romantico,” Parolechiave 25 (2001): 115–142. 15 Banti, La nazione del Risorgimento, 56–108; Banti, “Le invasioni barbariche e le origini delle nazioni,” in Immagini della nazione nell’Italia del Risorgimento, eds. Alberto M. Banti and Roberto Bizzocchi (Rome: Carocci, 2002), 24–30. 16 Banti, “Le invasioni barbariche e le origini delle nazioni,” 25. 17 Patriarca, “Relazioni pericolose,” 111,115,118. 18 Patriarca, “Relazioni pericolose,” 110. 19 Martin Thom, “Unity and Confederation in the Italian Risorgimento,” in Writing National Histories: Western Europe since 1800, eds. Stefan Berger, Mark Donovan, and Kevin Passmore (London: Routledge, 2002) 74, 76–79. Thom concludes that Cattaneo tended to jettison these Romantic theories as gross generalizations and blatant forgeries of the actual historical processes. For a

16 Introduction

20

21 22

23 24 25 26

27

28

broader perspective, see Martin Thom, Republics, Nations, and Tribes (London: Verso, 1995). Banti argues that ‘there is a constant morphologic continuity in the modality of conceiving national identity’ that is safeguarded ‘by a discursive mold that was built during the Risorgimento and developed throughout liberal age and Fascism without any substantial modification of its original elementary structures.’ See Alberto M. Banti, Sublime madre Nostra. La nazione Italiana dal Risorgimento al fascismo (Turin: Einaudi, 2011), ix. Always assuming that a research treating concepts such as ‘politics’ and ‘culture’ as mutually excluding is nowadays methodologically correct. Antonino De Francesco, The Antiquity of the Italian Nation: The Cultural Origins of the Political Myth in Modern Italy, 1796–1943 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013), 15. For a brief explanation of the evolution of the meanings of the term ‘nation’ in modern Italy, see Banti, La nazione del Risorgimento, 3–17. De Francesco, The Antiquity of the Italian Nation, 17. Nelson Moe, The View from Vesuvius: Italian Culture and the Southern Question (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2002), 85–187. Aliza S. Wong, Race and the Nation in Liberal Italy, 1861–1911: Meridionalism, Empire, and Diaspora (New York: Palgrave-Macmillan, 2006), 2. In particular, Wong seems to overlook the different political views, and, consequently, propositions, underlying the opinions of anthropologists like Cesare Lombroso, Alfredo Niceforo, and Giuseppe Sergi. Conversely, it is difficult to maintain that there was a common strategy for the South and southerners. Wong, Race and Nation in Liberal Italy, 47: ‘The description of a parasitic, “othered” south helped ease the transition into portraying southerners as biologically different, as constituting a different race than the northerners. Northerners characterized as doctors who held the responsibility of either curing the cancerous south or amputating the gangrenous southern limb, aided by a few complicit southern researchers—Sicilian Alfredo Niceforo was one of the most notable accomplices—sought to understand and explain questions of difference and diversity through emerging research in biology, science, physiology, and phrenology’ (emphasis added). Wong, Race and the Nation in Liberal Italy, 6: ‘The development of meridionalist discourse relied heavily on ethnocentric stereotypes, and many scholars have followed the cultural and racial language of nineteenth and early twentieth centuries to Its Teleological End in Fascism and Nazism. […] As identified by Nelson Moe, this neo-Orientalist discourse within Italy itself operates on two parameters. […] The dual-edgedness of displacement and complicity illustrates how “Orientalism can work within a country to reinforce the wider geopolitical and geo-cultural ambitions of the great powers,” creating what Milica Bakic-Hayden refers to as “nesting Orientalism.” […] The language of meridionalism, of internal difference and othering would inform other discourses that were brought forth to the Italian public. The vocabulary and metaphor that came into usage through efforts by meridionalists to explain and understand the southern question provided a basis for expressing diversity that would prove constructive to debates concerning emigration, colonialism, physiognomy, and, later, fascist agenda’ (emphasis added). Maria S. Quine, “Making Italians,” in Crafting Humans: From Genesis to Eugenics and Beyond, ed. Marius Turda (Gottingen: V&R Unipress), 127, 129. Even in their recent book regarding the making of the racial identity of the Italians, Gaia Giuliani and Cristina Lombardi-Diop seemed to have based their research on a ‘hetero-referential’ construction of race based on the ‘othering’ of the blacks. Not by coincidence, their research starts with the late nineteenth-century

Introduction  17

29

30

31 32

33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40

41

colonialism and disenchantment with Liberalism and democracy, and does not delve into the preceding nation-building process. See Gaia Giuliani and Cristina Lombardi-Diop, Bianco e nero. Storia dell’identità razziale degli italiani (Florence: LeMonnier, 2013), 1–65. Quine, “Making Italians,” 129: ‘Nicoluccian Aryanism sought to give Italians the “primordialist” ties which were necessary to bind them together into a nation.’ According to Quine, Nicolucci was the first one in relying on the measurement of skulls. See Quine, ibid., 129–132. Quine, “Making Italians,” 138. Quine adds that Nicolucci’s Aryanism was far from endorsing a white Europeans’ racial supremacy, since Nicolucci argued that white European, as well as darker Indians descended from the single IndoEuropean family. Moreover, Nicolucci held that this big Aryan family included Jews and Arabs as well. Yet, at the same time, Nicolucci maintained that not all Aryans were equal in beauty, nor that all were prone to progress and creativity. Not surprisingly, Nicolucci positioned the Italians as the prime sub-groups of the broader Aryan race. See Quine, ibid., 134–135. Quine, “Making Italians,”140. Quine identifies in Cesare Lombroso and Alfredo Niceforo the main exponents of a theory stressing atavistic deficiencies and denying any possibility of amelioration, while Giuseppe Sergi still contended that social intervention and bettered environmental conditions might increasingly improve a human group. See Quine, “Making Italians,” 144–145. Quine states that Sergi refuted Aryanism to the point that he contended that Aryans were a pure fabrication of coeval anthropologists. See Quine, “Making Italians,” 147–151. Quine, ibid. As reported by Quine, Nicolucci’s thought was not exempt from judgment over the best qualities of certain groups when compared to others. Quine, “Making Italians,” 134–135. Patriarca, “Le relazioni pericolose,” 111. Patriarca, “Le relazioni pericolose,” 112, 118. Patriarca, “Le relazioni pericolose,” 112. On the relationship between race and nation in Balibar’s theory, see Etienne Balibar and Immanuel Wallerstein, Race, Nation, Class: Ambiguous Identities (London: Verso, 1991), 98, 218–219. Patriarca, “Relazioni pericolose,” 111. Two main opposing views regarding the concepts of ‘race’ and ‘racism’ can be exemplified by the works by Neil MacMaster and Francisco Bethencourt. MacMaster argues that the racialization process results in the formation of immutable and absolute biological or cultural barriers among human groups. According to such a view, the boundaries between ‘cultural’ and ‘racialist’ racism are blurred. Bethencourt, on his part, maintains that the concept of inheritability of certain physical, psychological, and even cultural traits is essential to racialize a given human group. In order to avoid confusion, Bethencourt proposes the concept of ‘ethnocentrism’ to define other forms of classifications, discriminations, and phobias that do not necessarily tend to identify and target a human group as a ‘race’ with its lineage, descent, and hereditary traits. See Neil MacMaster, Racism in Europe: 1870–2000 (New York: Palgrave, 2001), 32; Francisco Bethencourt, Racisms: From the Crusades to the Twentieth Century. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2013), 7–8. Alberto Burgio argues that racism is the ‘ideology that legitimizes the discrimination of one or more race considered as inferior.’ See Alberto Burgio, “Per la storia del razzismo italiano,” in Nel nome della razza: il razzismo nella storia d’Italia 1870–1945, ed. Alberto Burgio (Bologna: Il Mulino, 1999) 14. Neil

18 Introduction

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43 44 45

46

47

48 49 50

MacMaster, on his part, states that racism has always been a dynamic process and that, accordingly, it is extremely hard to arrive at a satisfactory and simple definition of racism. Yet, he argues that modern racisms—whether ‘biological’ or ‘cultural’—always result in the formation of absolute and immutable barriers among human groups. See Neil MacMaster, Racism in Europe, 32. On the issues of environmental and societal influence, degeneracy/degeneration, inbreeding, and atavism, see William M. Nelson, “Making Men: Enlightenment Ideas of Racial Engineering,” 1364–1394; Quine, “Making Italians,” 127–152; Claude-Olivier Doron, L’Homme Altéré: Races et dégénérescence (XVIIe-XIXe siècles) (Ceyzérieu: Champ Vallon, 2016); McMahon, The Races of Europe. I refer to the model proposed by Balibar and Wallerstein; see Balibar and Wallerstein, Race, Nation, Class. As previously mentioned, scholars point out the coexistence of diverse conceptions of race. See Patriarca, “Relazioni pericolose,” 109–111. The first ‘modern’ usage of the term razza to define distinct human groups with peculiar and transmissible physical traits is employed by Neapolitan Enlightenment thinker and economist Ferdinando Galiani (1728–1787) in condemning the exploitation of the ‘negro race’ at the hands of the brutal and cruel slaveholders. See Salvatore Battaglia and Giovanni Ronco. Grande dizionario della lingua italiana, vol. 13 (Turin: UTET, 2004), 586–588. See, also, Alessandro Tuccillo, Il commercio infame. Antischiavismo e diritti dell’uomo nel Settecento italiano (Naples: Cliopress, 2013), 87–189. One of the first works using modern racialist taxonomies that I was able to identify is a medical treaty by Francesco Tantini, a physician of the University of Pisa. See Francesco Tantini, Opuscoli scientifici del dottore Francesco Tantini. Socio corrispondente della società reale delle Scienze di Gottinga, della Società Medica d’Emulazione di Parigi, dell’Accademia Pistoiese di Varia Letteratura, socio ordinario dell’Accademia Italia, e segretario del Comitato di Vaccinazione di Pisa (Pisa: Sebastiano Lischi, 1812), 53–64. On the necessity to investigate the shaping of modern naturalistic racialism in medicine and veterinary, and, in particular, anatomo-pathology and interbreeding practices, see Nelson, “Making Men,” 1372–1382; Doron, L’Homme Altéré, 28. I would, also, refer to my recent article: see Edoardo M. Barsotti, “Race and Risorgimento: An unexplored chapter of Italian history,” Journal of Modern Italian Studies 25, no. 3 (2020): 287. In a recent article, Federico Ferretti pointed out the pioneering level of the research on ‘pure’ Italian geography in the Risorgimento. For the definition of ‘pure geography’ by geographers like Ranuzzi, see Federico Ferretti, “Corrispondenze geografiche: Annibale Ranuzzi fra ‘Geografia Pura’ e Risorgimento (1831–1866),” Rivista Geografica Italiana 118, no. 1 (2011): 115–139. Concerning the lack of a proper distinction between statistics and geography in early nineteenth-century Italy, see Silvana Patriarca, Numbers and Nationhood: Writing Statistics in Nineteenth-Century Italy (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996), 7–8. For further reading on the notion of ‘racism without race,’ see Balibar and Wallerstein, Race, Nation, Class, chapter 1. For a pessimistic ‘turn’ in late nineteenth-century anthropology and the criticism of the liberal state, see De Francesco, The Antiquity of the Italian Nation, 149–157. I suggest relying on the methodologies suggested by Quentin R. D. Skinner and John G.A. Pocock. See Quentin Skinner, “Meaning and Understanding in the History of Ideas,” History and Theory 8 (1969), 3–53; John G. A. Pocock,

Introduction  19 The Machiavellian Moment: Florentine Political Thought and the Atlantic Republican Tradition (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1975). 51 Peter Gordon, “Contextualism and Criticism in the History of Ideas,” in Rethinking Modern European Intellectual History, eds. Darrin M. MacMahon and Samuel Moyn (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2014) 34, 36, 41. 52 As we will see throughout this book, all the authors examined were conversant with a broader European—or even Euro-American debate on race and ethnicity. For the transnational dimension of ethno-anthropological disciplines in the age of nationalism, see McMahon, The Races of Europe, 1–2.

1

Prologue The ‘primacy of the nation.’ Vincenzo Cuoco and the quest for Italian identity

The first French invasion of Italy (1796–1799) and the subsequent Napoleonic rule (1800–1814) marked the terminus a quo of the Risorgimento, that is, the struggle for the independence and unification of the Peninsula. In this period, the modern understanding of a nation, meaning a population bounded by common cultural traits, territory, and descent—and, most of all, the unique legitimate holder of political sovereignty—emerged. In the context of dissolution of monarchical absolutism, new theories and practices of political legitimacy were tested. The quest for Italian identity surpassed simple exercise of erudition, becoming the necessary tool for investigating the new ‘body’ of sovereignty: the nation. For the first time in history, the idea of an Italian nation transcended the traditional realm of the cultural imagery to become the factual basis of political sovereignty; the Napoleonic experiment, although ephemeral, would have lasting and crucial implications. Age-old myths, symbols, and theories were revived and re-adapted to provide the new political system with its own tradition, and, therefore, with its own legitimacy. One of the most pressing interrogatives concerned the origin of the Italian population in its material, corporeal dimension. At the intersection of political activity and scholarly endeavor stood the key figure of the intellectual, revolutionary, and former exile Vincenzo Cuoco, who in the early 1800s, would in a certain sense ‘inaugurate’ the modern quest for the identity of the Italians. In his monumental novel Platone in Italia as well as in many other articles and pamphlets, Cuoco advocated the idea of a common Italian ethnogenesis dating back to prehistoric times with the advent, in the Mediterranean basin, of a quasi-legendary race—the ‘Pelasgians’—who gave birth to the Greco-Italic world. Admittedly, the myth of the Pelasgian was by no means new, nor was the theory of the antecedence of the Italic civilization vis-à-vis the Greek one. These ideas—condensed under the myth of the Antiqua Sapientia Italica—abounded in the Latin classics, and were already revived by eighteenth- century Italian scholars and Etruscologists in particular. The real novelty resided, as we will see, in the re-elaboration and political usage of these myths. By antedating a common ethnogenesis of the Italians to

The ‘primacy of the nation’  21 the thirteenth century BCE, and most of all by positing their substantial ethnic continuity across millennia, Cuoco was dramatically extending the timeline of national history and reinforcing the claim for a unitary Italian nation-state. Furthermore, he adopted for the first time a multidisciplinary approach by combining the traditional studies of classics and philology with the nascent comparative linguistics and the natural history of the Earth. With Cuoco, in fact, the study of what would be eventually called the prehistory emerged for the first time (at least in its incipient form), and notably the hypothesis of a common ancestor of all main European linguistic groups which would soon be defined as Indo-European. In the search for this ‘race’—which in his analyses appeared as a proper ‘proto-nation’—were laid the foundations of the subsequent debate on the origins of the Italians based on not only an examination of the classics, but even more importantly, linguistics and the natural sciences. Although some of the theories advocated by Cuoco were rapidly dismissed, his invitation to extend further back in time the quest for the origins of the nation would not be ignored. Thus, nineteenth-century scholars would strive to find the earliest historical, linguistic, and even craniological evidence of the ‘first Italians.’ Most of all, although marred by several inconsistencies and flaws, Cuoco’s idea of national ‘Italo-Pelasgian’ primacy would outlive him and its critics, to periodically re-emerge in the historical, linguistic, and even anthropological works of the first half of the century and beyond.

The ‘best basis’ for government We have in our nation the best basis for a republican government; an ancient basis, well-known, and dear to the people, and by building on the same the edifice of the sovereignty of the people, it [the nation] might be even better organized than elsewhere.1 To explain why, at a certain point, factions of Italian élites began to look for the establishment of a nation-state in the Peninsula—in short, how the Risorgimento started—is by no means an easy task. Undoubtedly, the first French invasion and the subsequent Napoleonic rule dramatically accelerated this process, not only for its evident accomplishments in the abolition of absolutism and the establishment for the first time in history of an Italian state but also for its flagrant failures and setbacks.2 The above quotation from the Molise-born revolutionary Vincenzo Cuoco (1770–1823) is, in a certain sense, emblematic of his political endeavor. Cuoco embodied one of the first attempts by Italian intelligentsia of the Age of Revolution to provide the Bel Paese with its own modern political institutions without resorting to a verbatim ‘importation’ of the French institutional and administrative model. Such a task would also mandate—as we will see in the course of the present book—the making of an effective founding myth of the Italian nation which would outlive Cuoco, and would animate, throughout the

22  The ‘primacy of the nation’ entire Risorgimento and beyond, a lasting debate on the ‘first Italians’ and their heritage.3 The relationship between the Italian revolutionary patrioti (patriots) and French rule cannot be fully examined in the present work in its own complexities and contradictions.4 It must be said, however, that in spite of the inevitable ambivalent opinion regarding such a lumbering ‘liberator,’ one of the main points of contention regarded the tragic demise of the so-called Repubbliche Sorelle (Sister Republics). These were the provisional republican governments established by French military authorities with the help of the local revolutionary ‘Jacobins’ during the first invasion of the Peninsula. The abrupt and bloody demise of the Sister Republics in 1799 due to a successful Austro-Russian counter-offensive, assisted by local insurgencies, shocked the Italian revolutionaries due to the particular brutality and hostility shown by the urban and rural masses against the middle- and upper-class educated ‘Jacobins.’ In short, the events of 1799, and, in particular, the bloodshed terminating the short-lived Repubblica Napoletana (Neapolitan Republic), seemed to reveal, to the shocked patrioti, the abysmal gap between them and the ‘people’ whom they claimed to defend and represent.5 Cuoco, who personally lived through the tragic experiment of the Neapolitan Republic, attributed this hostility toward the newborn revolutionary institutions to their substantial extraneousness to the socio-cultural fabric of the Peninsula. During his exile in Milan in 1801, his decision to publish his Saggio storico sulla rivoluzione di Napoli (‘Historical essay on the revolution in Naples’) can be read as an overall assessment of the ongoing political developments.6 Yet, it was also a reflection on the intimate relationship between the legitimacy of the new political models and their roots in an ethnocultural tradition.7 A nation for Italy The Saggio storico consists of an account and an analysis of the major events of European and Neapolitan history, from 1793 to 1799, spanning from the execution of Louis XVI to the repression of the Neapolitan revolutionaries. The opening lines of the book eloquently introduce the theme: ‘I undertake to write the history of a revolution which intended to bring about the happiness of the nation, but in fact caused its ruin,’ states Cuoco.8 At the very core of Cuoco’s analysis rest the inner, unsuccessful dynamics of the revolutionary experiment of the Neapolitan Republic. Its main flaw resided, as the author reiterates, in the imposition by the élites of ideas and political practices that were completely alien to the Southern masses.9 Middle-class and upper-class educated, enlightened patrioti and the masses are, respectively, in Cuoco’s words, not two different classes, but even two different ‘peoples’ in terms of ideas, costumes, and even languages: The Neapolitan nation was split into two peoples, separated by two centuries in terms of history and two degrees of climate. As the cultured

The ‘primacy of the nation’  23 part of the nation had been formed on the basis of foreign models, its culture was different from the one that the nation as a whole needed, one that could come about only through the development of our own faculties. Some had become French, others British; and those that stayed Neapolitan—most of the people—were as yet uncultured. Thus the culture of the few had not benefited the nation as a whole; which, in turn, virtually despised a culture that was not beneficial to it and which it did not understand.10 The excessive identification of the élites with ‘foreign models’ was seen as not only the proof of their extraneousness to their ‘national’ cultural context, but also the cause of paradoxical dynamics: ‘How many of us’—asks Cuoco—‘were democrats simply because the French were?’11 And what about, as Cuoco repeatedly rhetorically asks his readers, the élites’ knowledge of the Southern social fabric, their interpretation of the needs of lowerclass Neapolitans who are ‘the same as those of Petronius’ (that is, of the first century CE)? What kind of constitution did the intellectuals of Naples devise for the populations of its diverse hinterland like ‘the fearsome inhabitants of Calabria, the fickle inhabitants of Lecce, the spurious Samnites, and the other, similar kinds who make up 9,999,999 10-millionths of that human race which you wish shortly to regenerate’?12 The usage and declination of certain crucial lemmas—such as ‘nation,’ among others—deserve, and indeed will be given, a further examination. For the moment, it is important to notice that the two themes—first, the disastrous ‘passive’ nature of the revolution, and second, a political culture lacking any proper ‘national’ connotation—are so deeply interrelated to the extent that they are placed on the same page and in the same paragraph.13 As has already been mentioned, one might read the aforementioned passages as the litmus test of a total rejection of the French Revolution, if not of a blatant Francophobia.14 Cuoco’s attitude toward France was undoubtedly characterized by a certain hint of hostility toward such an ambivalent neighbor. It is questionable, however, to glean from these observations an overall condemnation of the Revolution and least of all, Bonapartism, if for no other reason than Cuoco defended the necessity of Bonaparte’s rule in Italy and eventually served in the civil administration of the Napoleonic kingdom of Naples.15 Cuoco’s statements reflect his critique of Enlightenment rationalism in light of his deep knowledge of the Neapolitan as well as the international cultural and political debates: as has been noted, Cuoco ‘avidly’ read and discussed French sources, but he privileged ‘those theories that took historical context and tradition seriously.’16 Otherwise, as his analysis suggests, the effort to free and reform a nation would have been perceived by ordinary people as the disruption of traditions and customs—in short, of a distinctive way of life. Cuoco, far from condemning the ideas and principles of the French Revolution, thought that they might have proven more beneficial for Naples and its kingdom when adapted to the lively Neapolitan political tradition. Cuoco was essentially trying to demonstrate that, although

24  The ‘primacy of the nation’ they were deprived of authority by feudal lords and absolutism, the local and municipal communities of Southern Italy were far from passive and hapless political actors. Rather, they neither easily surrender, nor did they forget their traditional ‘liberties’: the Neapolitan countryside, in particular, had evolved as the arena of a complex and heated political dialectic between the local powers and the monarchy. In this context, the imposition from above of a government modeled upon extraneous and ‘foreign’ standards of France proved ruinous for the ‘Jacobins’ and their protectors.17 In such a perspective, Cuoco’s relationship with the French Enlightenment was much more complex than an overall rejection of it: in his opinion, political advancement was durable only when it fully engaged with the richness and the complexity of local cultures.18 Accordingly, ‘Jacobinism’ appeared to him as an excessively abstract, alien, and ultimately dangerous ideology.19 Such concerns have led scholars to question the extent to which Cuoco’s thought fits into the traditional ideological categorizations of the French Revolution. Although undoubtedly defending the legacy of the Revolution, Cuoco could hardly be defined as a ‘Jacobin,’ at least according to our modern understanding of Jacobinism.20 His embracing of Bonapartism and rejection of radicalism has, on the other hand, reinforced the impression of an inherently authoritarian strain in Cuoco’s thought. Other scholars, instead, point out that he—like his many coeval counterparts—was facing the dilemmas that would eventually characterize classical Liberalism: the role played by ‘reason’ and tradition in social life, the limits of political reforms (and the related issue of the stability of revolutionary governments), and the ‘implicit pact’ between the ruling élites and the governed.21 By connecting these elements, it is clear that in Cuoco’s thought, the success of a political revolution essentially resides in the shared perception of a tangible familiarity between the old order and the new, between tradition and reform. From this perspective, the effort to construct a ‘truly’ Italian cultural identity does not merely reflect the obvious intent to provide Italian nationalism with its own myths and symbolism. Rather, the ‘unveiling’ of a primeval Italic civilization and its tradition—a founding event proving the antiquity of the Italian nation—serves as the essential element for the stability of the new political turn initiated in 1789. In other words, to search for the ‘first Italians’ and the ‘first Italian nation’ enabled the projection to the most remote past a new institution like the nation-state, and, therefore, to legitimize it vis-à-vis the previous polities of the Old Regime. By doing so, the new states that emerged on the ashes of the traditional monarchies were presented not as the simple imposition of ‘naked’ juridical and diplomatic superstructures (like the ill-fated Repubbliche Sorelle), but rather, the legitimate heir of an older and historically ‘concrete’ entity.22 In this sense, it can be said that the search for ‘foundation myths’ of the new sovereign community and the nation, nationalism imitated the strategy of previous aristocratic and monarchical dynasties, which sought to reinforce their legitimacy by tracing back their origins to a remote quasi-mythical past.23

The ‘primacy of the nation’  25 The subsequent intellectual effort of Cuoco, titled the Platone in Italia (‘Plato in Italy’)—published in three volumes between 1804 and 1806— can be considered a continuation of the reflections initiated in the Saggio storico. An element of this strategy was to provide the Italian nationhood, and the unitary solution in particular, with its historical legitimacy. The consolidation and popularization of an Italian identity proceeded through a strategy of ‘speaking to the people’ (or at least the educated part of it), through narratives that—as Alberto Mario Banti observes—are considered ‘plausible’ and ‘firmly based on a national tradition.’24 The tones of Platone in Italia and its discovery of a remote yet advanced Italian civilization are undoubtedly imaginary, but they could appear, to a certain extent, historically grounded and firmly framed within a lasting humanistic tradition of a supposed Italian cultural primacy. Most of all, it was a narrative that, although mostly addressed to the Italian middle and upper classes, ennobled the Italian cultural tradition and identity and accordingly the Italian people as a whole. With all due caution, it might be argued that because of its emphasized eulogy of the Italian tradition and primacy, the Platone represents an incipient attempt to lay the foundation for the subsequent—and more far-reaching—process of nationalization of the Italian masses.25 In all fairness, some of the theories illustrated in the Platone are not novel. We will see that, at least from an ethno-historical standpoint, this voluminous historical novel gathers all of the previous main authors of modern Italian antiquarianism and, especially, eighteenth-century Etruscology. Also, Cuoco made no secret of relying on Giambattista Vico’s etymological approach, re-interpreting and reviving the old myth of the Antiqua Sapientia Italica (‘Ancient Italic Wisdom’), according to which an Italic autochthonous civilization predated and engendered the Greek and the Roman ones.26 In this respect, the real innovation of Cuoco’s novel resides in the usage of the old myths and theories about the ancient Italian cultural primacy for a clear nationalist and unitary purpose. The overarching theme of the book is, in fact, the rediscovery of an ancient Italic civilization tracing back to the pre-Minoan Age, essentially substantiating the hypothesis maintaining that the cradle of Western Civilization was not the Aegean Sea, but rather the Italian Peninsula.

The discovery of the Italian ‘primacy’ Between Vico and Maréchal Platone in Italia is a historical novel that narrates the travel of Plato and his disciple Cleobulus in Southern Italy in the mid-fourth century BCE.27 Through the device of a philosophical epistolary, the two Greek travelers discover the philosophical and cultural primacy of the ancient, preRoman Italic populations vis-à-vis the Greeks, and, of course, the menacing Romans. Drawing on Vico, Cuoco exposes the theory of the Italic origins

26  The ‘primacy of the nation’ of the Pythagorean philosophical and mystical school.28 Additionally, his main protagonists learn that even Homeric poems, traditionally considered the first manifestation of the Greek culture, were actually originally written in Italy.29 If the journey across Magna Græcia attests to the great cultural past of Italy, the visit of Plato’s fellow-traveler Cleobulus to the Italic populations, and, in particular, to the Samnites, is a discovery of a superior society, whose members are portrayed as the embodiment of republican virtues, which are threatened (and not by a coincidence) by the corrupted Greeks and the greedy and expansionistic Romans.30 With such a gloomy portrait of the fate of fourth-century BCE ‘Italians,’ the story finishes, but not before having made Plato and Cleobulus discover that, well before the Romans, the Greeks and the fragmented city-states—in short, despite its decadence— Italy was once reunited into a unitary state by one autochthonous advanced civilization from which all the ‘Italians’ descend: the Etruscans.31 In reading the Platone, it is not difficult to notice a clear allusion to Napoleonic Italy and, in particular, its problematic relationship with its French ‘protector.’32 There are few doubts, indeed, that Cuoco’s Platone was essentially intended to be a refutation of an almost coeval novel, the Voyages de Pythagore (‘Travels of Pythagoras’), written by the French revolutionary Sylvain Maréchal in 1799. The three-thousand-page and six-volume novel by the democratic Freemason Maréchal provided quite a different version of the path of civilization in Europe. According to Maréchal, in fact, the Greek Pythagoras borrowed his ideals and principles of wisdom, egalitarianism, and democracy from the Celtic Druids of Gaul whom he encountered after his long peregrinations across the Mediterranean and Europe.33 Maréchal suggested that, after originating in Greece, civilization was returning to Europe through France: an explanation that of course was perceived as a rationale for French supremacy and imperialism. To make things worse, the wave of ‘Celtomania,’ far from being limited to France, affected Italy with scholars like Napoleon’s official librarian Carlo Denina, who drew upon the ‘Gallic’ origin of Northern Italy to defend its regional specificity vis-à-vis the rest of the Peninsula.34 Neither of these implications would have ever been accepted by intellectuals like Cuoco, who defended a unitary political project in order to distance Italy from the ‘suffocating’ embrace of France. As already noted, it is not difficult to see in the Greeks and Romans of the Platone in Italia the ambivalent role of France as a civilizing power, and, at the same time, the ‘corrupter’ of Italy in terms of cultural identity (the Greeks) as well as the main obstacle to its complete independence (the Romans).35 Plato and Cleobulus are, for their part, a clear allegory of the Italian intellectuals, and their role in coeval politics, along with their travels seem to be more a metaphor of exile rather than a simple itinerary of discovery.36 The figure of the philosopher himself and the constant reference to Pythagoras and his secret sect of initiates as a means to achieve the true wisdom and freedom have been explained as a thinly veiled allusion to the secret societies and Freemasonry, and their role as a cradle for the future

The ‘primacy of the nation’  27 political class of a post-1789 political order.37 These peculiarities have led scholars like Giulio Bollati to question the extent to which, besides being a manifest eulogy of the Italian identity preserved by its people, Cuoco’s Platone can be read as the ultimate litmus test of a strain of elitism, and authoritarianism, if not a blatant ‘anti-modernism’ which supposedly constitutes a sort of ‘original sin’ of the Italian nineteenth-century bourgeoisie.38 Rather than trying to address these questions (which have been sufficiently explored elsewhere), it must be said that Cuoco’s voluminous historical novel, despite his declaration that it was a book ‘more intended for common people than scholars,’ was undoubtedly addressed to the most educated portion of that ‘common people.’39 In effect, the argumentation of Platone depended on a complex re-interpretation of previous authors and doctrines that were surely out of the reach of ordinary readers.40 The first and most important was the idea of an ‘Ancient Italic Wisdom’ whose phylogenesis in the classics, humanities, and antiquarianism cannot be simply reconstructed in a few lines.41 The appropriation of Pythagoras’ legendary figure by the Latin authors (as well as the philosophical and scientific primacy surrounding his school) as quintessentially ‘Italic’ dates back at least to the first century BCE.42 This idea revived, with alternate fortunes during the Renaissance, as a result of the rediscovery of the classics of Plato’s philosophy, and underwent further re-elaboration with Giambattista Vico’s De Antiquissima Italorum Sapientia (1710). By relying on the philological study of etymologies (as well, as some of his critics noted, on epigraphic and literary sources), Vico maintained that the Etruscans were the missing link between classical antiquity and ancient Egypt. In such an interpretation, the flourishing of an autochthonous Italic civilization not merely antedated the Greeks (and, of course, the Romans), but actually occurred well before the traditional chronological frame of classical antiquity, with powerful and lasting political implications.43 Another tradition of studies which served to reinforce the idea of an autochthonous and advanced Italic primeval civilization was, in effect, Etruscology and, in particular, the research activity of the Tuscan antiquarian and archaeologist Mario Guarnacci (1701–1785), on which Cuoco largely relied.44 Paradoxically, Guarnacci never mentions Vico since he distrusted the Latin and Greek literary sources employed by the Neapolitan philosopher. For the archaeologist Guarnacci, the myth of the philosophical and scientific primacy of the Greco-Roman world rested on the systematic and deliberate oblivion of the Etruscans: in other words, to read Greek and Latin authors was to believe the perpetrators of a centuries-long damnatio memoriæ.45 However, what made Guarnacci a powerful and fascinating author were two important interrelated aspects of his hypothesis regarding the very ancient ethnic layout of the Peninsula and the Western Mediterranean basin as a whole. Guarnacci, in effect, maintained that in spite of all their different denominations, the Italic populations were nothing more than simple regional offshoots of the previous Etruscan ethnicity.46 Second, and above

28  The ‘primacy of the nation’ all, he insisted on the theory of the Etruscans being common ancestors not only of all the Italic populations, but also of the Greeks although under the different names of ‘Tyrrhenians’ or ‘Pelasgians.’47 In this sense, Guarnacci’s Origini Italiche aimed at definitively bypassing the dispute over the Greek or Italic primacy by identifying in the legendary people of the ‘Pelasgians’— considered since classical antiquity the common progenitors of Western culture and the missing link with the older Middle Eastern civilizations—the more familiar, and of course Italic, Etruscans.48 This praise of the Etruscans by the eighteenth-century, Volterra-born Guarnacci was due of course to the evident regional—and we might add ‘municipal’—pride of the Tuscan intellectual and loyal subject of the Habsburg-Lorraine dynasty.49 It is somewhat ironic that this eulogy of a Tuscan regional primacy ended in becoming one of the most powerful tools in the hands of a unitary patriot like Cuoco. Yet, Guarnacci’s theories could serve a dual aim for the cause of the revolution and independence of Italy. With the thesis of an Etruscan origin of the Greek civilization, Cuoco aimed at countering any French justification for the ‘tutelage’ of Europe, whether in the form of the blatantly nationalist narratives of Maréchal and the Académie Celtique, but also in the more scholarly and measured tones of Charles François Dupuis of the Institut National, who claimed the antecedence of the Greek culture vis-à-vis the Italic ones.50 Concerning the Italian political arena, the idea of a substantial ethnic homogeneity of the Italians served to legitimize the project of a unitary nation-state embracing a community characterized by a common, although regionally diverse, line of descent. The refutation of any ethnic plurality of the Italians proved even more powerful, however, in delegitimizing those Ancien Régime dynasties that claimed a regional identity as a means for personal glorification and political legitimization.51 We might risk, however, oversimplifying the breadth of Cuoco’s thought if we consider his theories a simple re-adaptation of the old classics, humanities, and antiquarianism for a new political goal. Undoubtedly, the theme, the style, and the adopted narrative place the Platone and its author firmly in the tradition of Italian humanism. Its emphasis on philology and the study of etymologies reveals the deep influence of Vico’s historicism, even as some elements fully involved him in the newly developing trends of his age. For example, Cuoco’s interest in emerging linguistic disciplines is crucial to explaining his advocacy of a correct study of etymology to analyze populations before their development into a civilization.52 The histories of the Earth and geology were regarded, on the other hand, as the essential subsidiary tools of etymology in the arduous task of mapping the fluxes, divergence, and merging of human groups. In this sense, as Annalisa Andreoni argues, Cuoco publicly claimed to represent a novelty by employing natural history in his research activity on the ancient history of Italy.53 This call for a multidisciplinary approach to the study of antiquity stands, in effect, as one of the most interesting aspects of Cuoco’s criticism of certain erroneous

The ‘primacy of the nation’  29 etymological studies which in his opinion did not investigate the ‘causes and effects’ and the ‘relationship between things.’54 The identity of the Italians Cuoco’s dissertations on geography, geology, and etymologies represent, in effect, one of the dominant elements of his activity as a publicist and propagator of studies and theories on the origins of the Italians. Regarding this topic, Cuoco insists on representing ethno-historical research as a reconstruction of the processes of civilizations rather than an inquiry into the ‘physical origins’ of the primeval Italic populations.55 In a certain sense, it can be said that he openly denies the possibility of the reconstruction of the biological descent of populations: To investigate the physical origins of people is foolishness: it is impossible to research a primitive population that is incapable of preserving the memories of its civilization. As our author maintains, let’s try not to search for the first fathers of the Italians, but, rather, their first civilizers.56 Cuoco seems very clear on the real issues at stake: that is, the cultural identification of the Italians (especially, as we know, to ascertain their anteriority and primacy vis-à-vis the Greeks). In other words, any inquiry aiming at reconstructing the ‘physical,’ or, as we would say today, ‘biological’ origins of the Italian ethnicity would be invalidated by the lack of any written documentation preserving memories and information of it. As for the civilizational progress in Europe, on the other hand, he agrees that there was a westward diffusion from the Middle East to Europe.57 After all, Cuoco insists on the fact that the complete isolation from the rest of the world is characteristic only of the ‘barbaric’ and ‘savage’ populations, which surely did not include the Italians.58 Yet, though he seems to concur with some Italian etymologists and philologists on possible Phoenician colonization as the incipient moment of the civilization process in Italy, he raises a conceptual distinction and, most of all, a methodological objection to a possible descent of the Italians from such a population. He aims, in fact, at complicating the understanding of what the term ‘civilization’ can effectively mean for scholars by proposing a further distinction: The first civilizers of ancient Italy inevitably were the peoples of Asia: whether we are going to privilege a system over another, it is undeniable, in effect, that the civilization process in Asia is more ancient than in Europe. Once we have simplified our question to the problem of the origin of the civilization, and accordingly, distinguished the first forefathers from the first civilizer, we are therefore able to solve all the difficulties posed by the geological observations, as well as by the linguistic

30  The ‘primacy of the nation’ evidence, which suggests that the first dwellers of Italy came from the North. Therefore, it can be argued that the first settlers came from the north, while the first arts, laws, religious rites—in short, the first civilization— came from the east.59 Here, Cuoco seems to suggest, though in a very unclear way, an interesting distinction between ‘culture’ as the cultivation of knowledge, thought and institutions, and ‘culture’ in an ethno-anthropological sense as the distinctive and primitive features of the social life of a given population. In this sense, Cuoco seems to acknowledge an external contribution to the civilizational development on the Peninsula. At the same time, however, he suggests that this interaction did not substantially interfere with the ethnic pattern of a human group and its line of descent. According to Cuoco, in effect, the main error of those authors claiming a direct ethnic derivation of the Etruscans from the Phoenicians resides in the shallowness of their etymological approach, based on the identification of homophonies. Yet, as he remarks, such a criterion is extremely misleading since the limited amount of sounds in any human language makes the alphabetical or phonic similarities between words inevitable.60 Therefore, as Cuoco continues, a correct etymological inquiry into the origin of the Italians should rely not only on the phonic resemblance of lemmas, but on a careful comparative reconstruction of the concurrence of signifier and meaning among a wide array of lemmas covering the most simple and primitive concepts. He concludes that the more different languages resemble each other with respect to simple concepts of daily material life, the more their kinship is proved and ancient.61 Building on these views, Cuoco aims at definitively addressing the question of the relationship between the primitive Italics with their Middle Eastern civilizers who surely shared cultures, but not the same line of descent. As he insists, in fact, although Middle Eastern and European languages may share a few words, they do not display significant similarities suggesting a common ancestry. Rather, as he continues, it is more likely that all the main European linguistic groups descended from a common ancestor sprouting from the North, and, more precisely, from the plains of ‘Scythia.’62 The idea of a common ancestor of all the European linguistic families coming from the north recurs throughout Cuoco’s writings. In 1804, in fact, he accused Italian scholars of certain blameworthy neglect in ignoring all those theories disinterested in the ‘East’ as the original home of their forefathers, and consequently causing Italian linguistics to lag behind the more advanced British, and, most of all, German school.63 In addition, in debating with the members of the Académie Celtique over the most ancient civilizations of Europe, he maintains that in spite of all possible distortions and misinterpretations, historians and linguists should have paid more attention to those chronicles, legends, and myths referring to a common primeval ancestor of all European populations.64 In reconstructing, however, the migration paths of these early ancestors of the Europeans, Cuoco acknowledges

The ‘primacy of the nation’  31 that history and linguistics might not suffice, and that a more effective heuristic tool would be the investigation of geography and the history of the Earth. At this point, it is therefore interesting to notice that Cuoco’s proposal seems to stretch well beyond the mere identification of the ‘first civilizers’ of the Italians as the fundamental task of ethno-historical research, and, therefore, contradicts himself. The more the analysis delves into the most remote ages of the Peninsula, the more the question of the ‘first fathers’ seems, in effect, to gradually acquire a paramount status to the point that, as he states, ‘Once we stretch our research well beyond forty centuries ago, the history of mankind becomes inseparable from the history of Earth.’65 Natural history confirms, in Cuoco’s view, the hypothesis of colonization by a population coming from the north which, of course, occurred first in the Italian Peninsula and later in the Aegean basin. As Andreoni notes, Cuoco maintained that the Italian territory was more ancient than the Greek one, and that, accordingly, civilization could have flourished where favorable conditions appeared before.66 According to Cuoco, the ancient mythologies attested to the occurrence of cataclysmic geographical events which contributed to the rise as well as the disappearance of primeval populations. He argued that legends and myths themselves constituted an allegory of these events. For example, he agreed with the interpretation provided by the Apulian scholar Ciro Saverio Minervini (1734–1805), according to whom Homeric poems were the representation of primeval earthquakes and eruptions that had left no significant trace in Greece, but, rather, in the soil of Southern Italy. In other words, Cuoco seems to say that where history and language fall short in providing further evidence, the most essential elements like water and fire left on the surface of the earth the traces of the path followed by the primeval progenitors of the whole Mediterranean world.67 Apart from a catastrophist interpretation of classical myths, it is quite difficult to ascertain whether Cuoco believed in the historicity of the biblical Great Deluge narrative or not. Apparently, he does not seem to contradict the existence of impressive floods or marine phenomena affecting the human fluxes and settlement in the Mediterranean area.68 Undoubtedly, as he argues, geographical evidence suggests that prehistoric Italy gradually emerged from the sea: Let’s examine Italy when it started to become habitable. It is undoubted, in effect, that a long time ago waters covered the entirety of its surface. The first human beings colonized it only when the water began to retire. The first portions of land to emerge from the sea were the top of the mountains, and there we must search for the first populations. Now, if we follow the Italian tradition, we will see the peoples exactly following the slopes of the mountains. Where did these men come from? Not from Greece, since it was surely not habitable at that time. Not from Egypt, which was maybe even less habitable than Greece; nor from the shores of Africa or Phoenicia, since the language of the population inhabiting

32  The ‘primacy of the nation’ those areas was completely different from the indigenous language of Latium.69 In a certain sense, as Cuoco remarks, geography, and, most of all, the design of mountains, ridges, and watersheds of Italy suggest the probable path followed by human migration descending in the Peninsula: a path that could not have started from the lower (and accordingly still submerged) Greece. It is, therefore, more plausible to hypothesize that the easiest access to the Peninsula (and the whole Northern shore of the Mediterranean) was from continental Europe, which was used by ‘a more northern population, which started to colonize Italy, Greece, Gaul, as well as that part of Asia Minor south of the Caucasus as soon as the waters withdrew.’70 The name of this population is unknown and, as Cuoco adds, irrelevant, but they surely engendered both the Latin and Greek languages, given their extraordinary morphological similarities. At this point, it is almost inevitable for modern readers to wonder if Cuoco, by suggesting the existence of a common ancestor for all the main European linguistic groups, can be considered a supporter or even a sort of forerunner of the Indo-European migration theory. To remove the first doubts, Cuoco could have never even used the term ‘Indo-European,’ since it was only coined by the British physician Thomas Young in the Quarterly Review in 1813, almost a decade after the writing of the Platone in Italia.71 Moreover, the first linguistic works systematizing and popularizing IndoEuropean studies were completed by Franz Bopp and Rasmus Christian Rask, respectively, in 1816 and 1818.72 It would not be completely inexact to maintain, however, as Andreoni does, that Cuoco paid interest to the ‘nascent’ Indo-European linguistics, and, in particular, to the work of British scholar William Jones. Cuoco openly acknowledges the crucial contribution of this linguist to the research about the origins of modern European languages.73 In his articles and letters which were written during and after the drafting and the publishing of Platone, Cuoco openly advocates the hypothesis of a common ancestor of the Western European populations identified through linguistic similarities among modern languages.74 This ethnolinguistic kinship with the rest of other European populations, however, does not prevent him from defending the idea of an Italian primacy visà-vis the entire Western World, which is, after all, eminently cultural. In his reconstruction, in effect, Italy could benefit from the unique position of the Peninsula at the crossroads between the migratory fluxes from continental Europe and the process of civilization spreading westward from the Middle East through the Mediterranean Sea. If we cannot properly call Cuoco an ‘Indo-Europeanist,’ it is certain that in Cuoco’s view, Italians are a nation of European descent since they are the heirs of that common ancestor of all modern Europeans that flowed from the Eurasian plains (the ‘Scythia’) into the core of the continent first, and then into Mediterranean basin through the Italian peninsula.75 To trace the

The ‘primacy of the nation’  33 exact moment and modalities through which the population settled in Italy and underwent the crucial step to civilization is, according to Cuoco’s narrative, extremely difficult and not of paramount importance. Cuoco himself does not seem to linger that much on this question, nor to openly refute any idea of a foreign, probably Phoenician, influence in originating the Italian civilization. What seems important, however, is to demonstrate that well before the flourishing of Greece, the Italic civilization had established an empire encompassing not only the entire Italian peninsula, but also stretching from the Tyrrhenian Sea to Asia Minor.76 When classical Greece emerged, of that empire and that civilization—the Etruscan, whom the Greeks called ‘Pelasgian’—nothing remained, except for their descending Italic populations, which, in spite of their different names, provided evidence for their previous cultural and political unity. To conclude, it is necessary to consider that although in Cuoco’s writings the question of the ‘first authors of civilization’ of Italy is essential in delineating the shaping of a superior Italic culture, the question of the ‘first fathers of the Italians’ does not seem, in spite of his declaration, to be overlooked. Rather, through the study of linguistics, Cuoco clearly aims at reconstructing a line of descent which serves, of course, as further proof of this Italic antecedence to Greece, but also as the bedrock for the development of this autochthonous Etruscan civilization engendering the Italians. Against this backdrop, one might, accordingly, wonder how this idea of continuity is conveyed in Cuoco’s pages. Does Cuoco, for example, talk about a ‘nation’ embracing the ancient Italics, and what does the term mean? What is, on the other hand, the role of naturalistic connotations in defining it? And, lastly, is there any evidence of racialization of the Italics/Italians? ‘Pelasgi-Etrusci,’ ‘Italici-Italiani,’ and ‘immutable eternal characters’ First of all, in order to prevent misunderstandings, the word ‘race’ in Cuoco’s thought seems not to possess any of its current meanings denoting certain phenotypical peculiarities in the human species. Cuoco’s understanding of the term ‘race’ seems unaffected by the great epistemological shift in racial semantics impressed by the natural history of man after the late eighteenth century. It is difficult to identify in his writings any connotation of the term ‘race’ to denote phenotypical attributes in the human species. Admittedly, the term razza (‘race’) rarely appears in Cuoco’s works and, quite surprisingly, its frequency is almost negligible in his main historical novel: the Platone. In the rare occasions in which the concept of razza is employed, it is used to describe animal breeds or, with respect to the humans, humankind as a whole—la razza umana (‘the human race’)—or to denote a particular moral attitude of a generic group of people, with no reference to a specific ethnicity. In this last case, the usage of razza is synonymous with broader understandings of the term, such as ‘group’ or

34  The ‘primacy of the nation’ ‘kind,’ and remains widespread today in colloquial Italian.77 In the few cases in which the term razza is associated with a name or an adjective denoting a particular specific human community, it refers to Athenians and their character and attitudes toward the rest of Greeks, or the Cretans and Spartans with respect to the subjugated indigenous populations.78 It seems, therefore, that aside from its broader meaning as ‘humankind,’ the term ‘race’ appears to be employed as a synonym for a given community without particular reference to a delineated line of descent. In this sense, Cuoco’s razza is characterized by the extreme polysemy that always characterized the term, prior to its systematization by eighteenth- and nineteenthcentury ‘physiological racism,’ and that to a certain extent connotes the Greek èthnos—which means, indeed, ‘people,’ ‘community,’ ‘nation,’ and ‘race’—and is used today as a substitute for the term ‘race.’79 The only case in which the term razza seems to deviate from its synonymic usage as ‘nation’ and ‘community’ occurs in a passage where Cuoco refers to the ancestors of the Italians and Greeks being of the ‘same race of men who inhabited the lands farther from the sea and behind the highest mountains.’80 This may represent, in effect, the only interesting case in which the term seems more similar to the subsequent notion of ‘race,’ which signified a primeval and broader human group who were forerunners of the current nationalities. Yet, given the wide range of meanings assigned to the term ‘race’ and its fairly rare usage by Cuoco, it would be difficult to maintain that this last understanding is the dominant one. Even with respect to the notion of race as something indicating a prehistoric population engendering the subsequent nationalities, there seems absent in Cuoco’s thought any further attention to naturalistic, phenotypical connotations in defining the different human groups. Quite interestingly, especially for modern readers, is the fact that Cuoco gradually delves into the past of the Italian identity by relying not only on linguistics, but on the natural history of the Earth in order to explain the early human migrations. Yet, there exists no trace in his works of any theory of the eighteenthcentury natural history of man. In reading Cuoco in effect, one can find several references to prehistory and geology, but nothing that can resemble even an indirect citation of the works of naturalists like Linnaeus (Carl Von Linné), which are considered, after all, not only the cornerstones of modern natural sciences, but also of modern racialism.81 Along the same lines, he makes no reference to the works by Johann Friedrich Blumenbach or Petrus Camper, who had already acquired a certain fame in the European intellectual panorama.82 Even the absence of any mention of the works of zoologists like Georges Cuvier (1769–1832) seems quite unexplainable in the light of Cuoco’s supposed major acquaintance with the French-speaking world, and, most of all, geological catastrophism. In short, it might seem quite paradoxical to us that the scholar who argued that the deeper we delve into the history of mankind, the more it becomes ‘inseparable’ from natural history pays no attention to the nascent natural history of man.

The ‘primacy of the nation’  35 Certainly, such an absence might appear inexplicable to a modern reader. However, we must also acknowledge that it is impossible to examine the entirety of Cuoco’s lifelong production due to the fact that, in his later years of declining mental health, he allegedly destroyed a considerable quantity of his writings.83 One might also hypothesize that Cuoco was still operating within the main traditional coordinates of the humanities, which denied epistemological dignity to any other approach. I would argue, however, that all these questions should not distract us from one point: Cuoco was mainly concerned with demonstrating the cultural primacy and antecedence of the Italian nation vis-à-vis the Greeks and the rest of Europe. His trespass beyond the usual boundaries of history to trace the first human migration serves only to support such an aim. In other words, against this backdrop, the comparison of crania and skin colors might have proved not only uninfluential, but completely useless. Should this apparent unacquaintance with the nascent physical anthropology lead us to conclude, however, that in formulating an Italian identity, Cuoco was essentially refuting any naturalistic connotations and merely resorting, to ‘cultural’ criteria such as a common history and civilization or, even, the simple self-awareness of being a sovereign community bound by a common commitment? In reality, as we will see, this opposition between ‘culture’ and ‘nature’ becomes further complicated and nuanced concerning concepts such as ‘national character’ which seem to biologize not only psychological, but also collective cultural traits. In other words, what is ‘cultural’—and therefore ‘artificial’ and ‘constructed’ in our modern understanding—is made natural and ‘ingrained’ in a given human group. Cuoco, in effect, seems to support the notion of immutable and innate traits of the nations and human groups. For example, in an article devoted to the crucial contribution of linguistics to ethnographic studies, he praises Vico for being the first to investigate and produce valid theories ‘on the age of nations and their unalterable eternal characters.’84 A few years later, in reviewing a work by Denina, though criticizing Montesquieu for his rigid application of climate theory, he openly refers to the Italians as being shaped by ‘that eternal character that climate imprints in the spirit of all nations living in the same region.’85 It may be noted that Cuoco’s notion of ‘eternal character’ is not without evident contradictions. While one passage seems to suggest that the nation actually possesses inherent, eternal, and immutable characteristics, the other, instead, emphasizes the role of an external agency—the climate—in modifying what is supposedly ‘eternal.’ Aside from this contradiction, however, what concerns Cuoco most is to convey the existence of a community of descent—the nation—characterized by eternal (or quasi-eternal) traits that have remained substantially unaltered since the ancient past. In several of Cuoco’s passages, the emphasis on an intimate continuity between the past and the present in the character of nations or populations extends far beyond a mere rhetorical tool. Readers can interpret his

36  The ‘primacy of the nation’ famous statement about the Neapolitans, who are ‘the same as those of Petronius’ as a powerful hyperbole to describe the miserable conditions of the Southern urban proletariat, while other passages suggest a metahistorical conception of the national and regional identities. For example, by adopting an approach that today would range from the psychosocial to the anthropological, he argues that there is an intimate connection between the evolution of the dramatic characters of the popular theater and the identity and costumes of a nation. In comparing the modern Neapolitan commedia to the ancient Atellana of Acerra, Cuoco suggests that from the characters to the language nothing has essentially changed, at least regarding the common people.86 Again, in describing his native ‘Samnium,’ Cuoco points out the persistence of customs tracing back to the pre-Roman age; when he refers to himself as a ‘Samnite,’ it is very difficult to ascertain, in this discursive context, whether that term refers to being a resident of the modern region of Samnium, or, rather, a descendant (and member) of that Italic ethnicity.87 This apparent conflation of ancient and modern ethnic and national denominations characterizes Cuoco’s writings and the Platone in Italia in particular. If recurring terms like ‘Pelasgian’ and ‘Etruscan’ are, to a certain extent, historicized, the dyad Italic/Italian is not. When discussing the Pelasgians and the Etruscans, in fact, the characters of the novel hypothesize that these two names indicate the ancestors of the Italian nation. Actually, according to Cuoco, ‘Pelasgian’ is, as observed before, one of the many names assigned to the Etruscans by the Greek sources of the classical age. Some of the interlocutors of Cleobulus and Plato, in effect, use it as further proof of that Etruscan empire civilizing the entire Aegean region which already vanished well before the blossoming of classical Greece.88 Thus, although of paramount importance in demonstrating both the cultural antecedence and the homogeneity of the Italian nation, the Pelasgian/Etruscans are, in the fictional timeline of Platone in Italia, a chapter of the past. However, the term ‘Italian’ is used indifferently as a synonym of ‘Italic’ throughout the entire book. In other words, in the historical novel, there appears to be missing the most basic distinction in the Italian vocabulary between ‘Italic’ as indicating an autochthonous and ancient population or culture of the Peninsula, and ‘Italian’ as referring to its modern inhabitants.89 For example, the interlocutors of fourth-century BCE Plato and Cleobulus are described as ‘Italians,’ and when one of them debates the actual role played by Greek colonization in shaping the ethnic pattern of the ‘Italians,’ the other argues that, except for a few settlements, the Greeks had by no means contributed to the ‘Italian nation.’90 Obviously, such an anachronistic usage of the adjective ‘Italian’— especially when attributed to the concept of ‘nation’—cannot pass unobserved to modern readers. At this point, however, it is hopefully clear that the use of these terms is functional to Cuoco’s vision of a unified Italian nation-state, as well as to his conception of the nation not only as a

The ‘primacy of the nation’  37 community bounded by a common line of descent, but also politically organized by an institution aiming at self-representation and self-government. In the Platone in Italia, the term ‘nation’ is extensively used to indicate both the regional populations and the Italians as a whole. One might be surprised to notice, along with the broader encompassing ‘Italian’ nation, references to the Samnite and Lucan ‘nations.’ In this sense, Cuoco’s usage of the terms still reflects that polysemy that scholars of nationalism identified as peculiar of the term in the eighteenth century when ‘nation’ was also employed to represent not only the Italian cultural community, but also the regional or the civic ones.91 In particular, these populations or communities seem to acquire, in Cuoco’s words, the status of the ‘nation’ when they seek independence or unification, and decide to organize themselves into representative institutions: the Samnites are ‘summoned’ through general councils of their ‘nation,’ while the Syracusans are asked to finally ‘become a nation’ (the Sicilians) by expelling the Carthaginians and unifying the island.92 What might appear as an apparent concession to a regionalist, and therefore an anti-unitary political design, should not, however, mislead readers. Cuoco’s Platone is first and foremost a discovery of Italian primacy and identity. As mentioned before, all the Italic/Italian populations encountered by Plato and Cleobulus are nothing but the regional manifestations of a previous Etruscan ethnic and political unity. It is no coincidence, indeed, that the great Italic/Italian past discovered by Plato and his pupil is an age when all the Italians were once united into an Etruscan state encompassing the entire Peninsula, while their present time is portrayed as a period of decadence where all the Italics/Italians stand divided and conflicting at the mercy of the corrupting Greeks and the aggressive Romans. In this perspective, acknowledgment and even praise of the smaller regional ‘nations’ do not conflict with the idea of a ‘greater’ all-encompassing Italian nation since both the regional and the national stem from the same line of descent. For that matter, such a view fully reflects that sort of ‘gradual’ path to nationhood that patriotic intellectuals like Cuoco saw at work during the Napoleonic age. As we have seen, after all, Bonaparte’s ‘re-designing’ of Italy consisted of further simplification of the Peninsula’s map, as well a radical leveling of its institutions.93 In such an outlook, in effect, the idea of a Southern—that is to say, ‘Neapolitan’—national allegiance aiming at establishing representative institutions rooted in an autochthonous tradition was perceived as a necessary step to the Italian nationwide unification.94 And, as we will see, many nationalist ‘gradualist’ approaches characterize some of the political ‘options’ for unification, well beyond the Napoleonic age.

Conclusions In examining Cuoco’s theories about the genesis of the Italian nation, it is almost inevitable for modern readers to question their plausibility, even

38  The ‘primacy of the nation’ in the eyes of the early nineteenth-century public. As for the effective influence of the Platone in Italia, there seems to be a substantial disagreement in Italian historiography. De Francesco, in particular, maintains that the legacy of Cuoco’s main work had been overestimated by scholars like Giovanni Gentile and Giulio Bollati.95 Certainly, the style, but, most of all, the already ‘obsolete archeological approach’ did not help the book to gain widespread consensus among the scholarly public.96 Undoubtedly, the subsequent works on pre-Roman Italy by Giuseppe Micali met the needs for a more analytical approach to the study of Italic antiquities without analyzing them as a prefiguration of a unified Italy.97 This partial downplaying of the influence of the Platone should not lead us, however, to completely underestimate the legacy of Cuoco’s theories, for no other reason that, as we have seen, his activity as a novelist was only a part of his overall intellectual activity as a writer, journalist, publicist, and popularizer on Italian history and ethnography. In particular, the idea of a national ‘primacy’ tracing back to the primeval dwellers of the Peninsula and ancestors of the modern Italians proved lasting even in spite of the evident flaws of Cuoco’s archaeological and historical reconstruction. As Casini has noted, the unpopularity of the book among scholars did not prevent the novel from achieving its political goal: The measured tone of the novel gratified the nascent national pride of early nineteenth-century readers […] more or less consciously, the message endured in the thought of the moderate liberals, although being marginalized by philology and historical critique. Being fed with halftruths as well as several forgeries, the quest for the national identity into the sub-stratum of pagan and pre-Roman Italy revived the dispute over the Italic origins—[this dispute] only lacked a renewed contribution from the idea of a philosophia perennis and Catholic theology to become the slogan of Neo-Guelph propaganda.98 In this sense, the following works of the 1840s by Angelo Mazzoldi and, most of all, Vincenzo Gioberti can be read, in effect, as a re-interpretation of Cuoco’s narrative, although in a different ideological perspective. Both of these works are laden with their historical reconstructions, national lineages, and of course the Italian nation’s ‘primacy.’99 Even 1850s ethnology, and, in particular, the research of Giustiniano Nicolucci, was not exempt from this fascination with the Italic ‘primacy,’ and claimed to have found in supposed ‘Pelasgian’ crania the evidence of such an aesthetic and moral superiority.100 After Cuoco, nationalism as well as research about the origin and the antiquity of the Italian nation flourished and proceeded in unison. One of the strengths of Cuoco’s narrative resides in having established the idea of a substantial continuity of the Italian nation since remote antiquity by citing as evidence the persistence of certain ‘eternal’ characters, the language, and

The ‘primacy of the nation’  39 societal and political institutions. His approach is particularly effective in antedating the temporal coordinates of the quest for the origins of the Italian nation well beyond the usual timeline of historiography. Through natural history and linguistics, he aims, in effect, at reconstructing an unaltered line of descent, bonding modern Italians to their prehistorical progenitors who settled in the Peninsula before anybody else. Understandably, such an approach, although highly questionable, could prove extremely effective in conveying the idea of autochthony, and, most of all, of the substantial ethnic homogeneity of a population which was portrayed as destined to re-achieve its unity and statehood. In addition, such enormous backdating of the Italian nationality to a very ancient, and even prehistoric age would provide the fertile ground for the subsequent investigations into the culture, the language, the characters, and even the bodies of the Italians. And, most of all, the following debate would constantly divide those who, in the footsteps of Cuoco, argued for a substantial ethno-racial homogeneity of the peoples of the Peninsula and those who, on the contrary, underlined their diversity, with different and sometimes conflicting political visions regarding the future of Italy.

Notes 1 For the Italian original, see Vincenzo Cuoco, Saggio storico sulla rivoluzione di Napoli. Seconda edizione con aggiunte dell’autore (Milan: Sonzogno, 1806), viii: ‘Noi abbiamo nella nostra nazione la miglior base di un governo repubblicano; base antica, nota, e cara al popolo, ed elevando sulla medesima l’edifizio della sovranità del popolo forse sarebbe organizzata meglio che altrove.’ For a recent translation into English language of the same passage, see Vincenzo Cuoco, Historical Essay on the Neapolitan Revolution of 1799, eds. Bruce Haddock and Filippo Sabetti, trans. David Gibbons (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2014), 230–231: ‘In our nation, we have the best basis for a republican government; an old basis, well known and dear to the people, and by building on the same edifice of the sovereignty of the people, it might even be better organized than others elsewhere are.’ I am, however, unsatisfied by David Gibbons’ translation of the second part of the sentence, since it seems not to render its semantic complexity (and ambiguity). In the original Italian sentence, in effect, both ‘basis’ (base) and ‘nation’ (nazione) are feminine as it is the pronoun medesima—‘the same’—which is not referring to ‘edifice’ (edifizio), which is masculine (otherwise, we should have read medesimo). Accordingly, Cuoco does not urge building ‘on the same edifice of the sovereignty of the people,’ but to build on the ‘same’ → ‘basis’ the ‘edifice of popular sovereignty.’ Now, readers can notice that ‘nation’ (nazione), ‘basis’ (base), ‘same’ (medesima), ‘sovereignty’ (sovranità) are all feminine: consequently, the whole sentence sounds even more coherent although it is actually quite convoluted. In other words, Cuoco affirms that the best basis for a republican government in Italy is the nation, and that by building on the ‘same’ (basis/nation), the edifice of popular sovereignty, ‘it might be even better organized than elsewhere.’ Yet, we have to consider that in the second part of the original sentence, the subject that in English is translated into ‘it’ is not stated, and that ‘organized’ (organizzata) is an adjective in the feminine form. Accordingly, I would argue that ‘organized’ refers to the ‘basis/nation’ and not to ‘popular sovereignty.’

40  The ‘primacy of the nation’ 2 On the realization, for the first time during Bonaparte’s rule of a proper Italian political space, see Antonino De Francesco, L’Italia di Bonaparte. Politica, statualità e nazione nella penisola tra due rivoluzioni, 1796–1821 (Turin: UTET, 2011), xvi–xix, 65–97. As for the preference of Italian ‘Jacobin’ provisional authorities for a unitary nation-state as a powerful means against the claims of the older dynastic states, see Umberto Chiaramonte, Il dibattito sulle autonomie nella storia d’Italia (Milan: FrancoAngeli, 1998), 32–37. 3 Alberto M. Banti, Il Risorgimento italiano (Rome: Laterza, 2004), 19–22. 4 For an overview of the historiographical debate on the Jacobin Triennium, and the Italian intellectuals’ view of the Sister Republics and Napoleon, see De Francesco, L’Italia di Bonaparte, vii–xix; 52–53; Bruce Haddock and Filippo Sabetti, introduction to Historical Essay on the Neapolitan Revolution of 1799, xviii. For Cuoco’s definition of ‘patriot,’ see Cuoco, Saggio storico, 105n: ‘Patriot. But who is a patriot? This term should indicate a man who loves his fatherland; in the past decade, however, it was synonymous with republican, although, in all fairness, not all patriots were republicans.’ See also, Cuoco, ibid., 105: ‘Yet, the opinions of the people and the patriots were not the same: they had different ideas, different habits, and even different languages.’ 5 Cuoco, Saggio storico, 105–107. See, also, Haddock and Sabetti, introduction to Historical Essay on the Neapolitan Revolution of 1799, xix–xx, xxvi; De Francesco, L’Italia di Bonaparte, 123–126. For an exhaustive reference on antirevolutionary insurgencies in 1796–1815 Italy, see Anna M. Rao, ed., Folle controrivoluzionarie. Le insorgenze popolari nell’età giacobina e napoleonica (Rome: Carocci, 2001). 6 On Cuoco’s political involvement in the Repubblica Napolitana, and the subsequent exile in Milan until 1806, see Antonino De Francesco, Vincenzo Cuoco: una vita politica (Rome: Laterza, 1997), 35–38. 7 Antonino De Francesco, introduction to Saggio storico sulla rivoluzione di Napoli, by Vincenzo Cuoco, ed. Antonino De Francesco (Manduria: Piero Lacaita Editore, 1998), 178. 8 Cuoco, Historical Essay on the Neapolitan Revolution of 1799, 14. For the original Italian version, see Cuoco, Saggio storico, 21. 9 Cuoco, Saggio storico, 105. 10 Cuoco, Historical Essay on the Neapolitan Revolution of 1799, 91. See, also, for the original Italian version, Cuoco, Saggio storico, 107. 11 Cuoco, Historical Essay on the Neapolitan Revolution of 1799, 30. For the original Italian version, see Cuoco, Saggio storico, 36: ‘Quanti fra noi erano democratici solo perché lo erano i Francesi?’ 12 Cuoco, Historical Essay on the Neapolitan Revolution of 1799, 229–230. See, also, Cuoco, Saggio storico, vi–vii. For Cuoco’s reflection over the crucial role played by ordinary people in the revolutions, and the difference between the needs of the educated élites and, on the other hand, of ordinary people, see Haddock and Sabetti, introduction to Historical Essay on the Neapolitan Revolution of 1799, xxvi. 13 Cuoco, Saggio storico, 105. 14 For further information concerning Francophobia in late eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century Italian culture and Cuoco misogallismo, see Mario Themelly, “Letteratura e politica nell’età napoleonica: il ‘Platone in Italia’ di Vincenzo Cuoco,” Belfagor 45, no. 2 (1990): 130–131. 15 On Cuoco’s appointment to the Council of State of the Kingdom of Naples in 1806, see De Francesco, L’Italia di Bonaparte, 82; De Francesco, Vincenzo Cuoco, 92–128. See, also, Giuliano Albarani, Il mito del primato italiano nella storiografia del Risorgimento (Milan: Unicopli, 2008), 86–87. On Cuoco ‘Bonapartist Liberalism’ see Themelly, “Letteratura e politica nell’età napoleonica,” 140. On Cuoco’s

The ‘primacy of the nation’  41

16 17 18 19 20

21

22

23

24 25

26 27

28 29 30 31

defense of a ‘popular monarchy’ and the Vichian roots of such idea, see Francesco Brancato, Vico nel Risorgimento (Palermo: Flaccovio, 1969), 22. Haddock and Sabetti, introduction to Historical Essay on the Neapolitan Revolution of 1799, xiv. Haddock and Sabetti, ibid., xv. Haddock and Sabetti, ibid. Haddock and Sabetti, ibid., xvi. On the usage and meaning of the term Jacobin in revolutionary Italy, see Vincenzo Cuoco, Saggio storico sulla rivoluzione di Napoli, ed. Antonino De Francesco (Manduria: Pietro Lacaita Editore, 1998), 93; Haddock and Sabetti, introduction to Historical Essay on the Neapolitan Revolution of 1799, xxvii. Haddock and Sabetti, introduction to Historical Essay on the Neapolitan Revolution of 1799, xxxiv, and Paolo Casini, L’antica sapienza italica. Cronistoria di un mito (Bologna: Il Mulino, 1998), 261. On Cuoco’s Liberalism, see Themelly, “Letteratura e politica nell’età napoleonica,” 134; Cuoco, Saggio storico sulla rivoluzione di Napoli, ed. Antonino De Francesco, 85–86. Albarani, Il mito del primato italiano nella storiografia del Risorgimento, 11. See, also, Antonino De Francesco, introduction to Platone in Italia. Traduzione dal Greco by Vincenzo Cuoco, eds. Antonino De Francesco and Annalisa Andreoni (Rome: Laterza, 2006), xl. On the necessity of tracking forefathers, see Anne-Marie Thiesse, La creazione delle identità nazionali in Europa (Bologna: Il Mulino, 2004). On the usage of genealogies as a tool for political and dynastic legitimacy, see Roberto Bizzocchi, Genealogie incredibili. Scritti di storia nell’Europa moderna (Bologna: Il Mulino, 1995). Concerning the relationship between mythical genealogies and nationalism, see Roberto Bizzocchi and Erminia Irace, “Mythical Ancestry, Genealogy, and Nationalism in Eighteenth- and Nineteenth-Century Europe,” in Mythical Ancestry in World Cultures, 1400–1800, ed. Sara Trevisan (Turnhout: Brepols Publishers, 2018), 165–189. Alberto M. Banti Sublime madre nostra. La nazione italiana dal Risorgimento al fascismo (Rome: Laterza, 2011), 12–13. See, also, Albarani, Il mito del primato italiano nella storiografia del Risorgimento, 30–31. Banti, Sublime madre nostra, 10–16; George Mosse, The Nationalization of the Masses: Political Symbolism and Mass Movements in Germany from the Napoleonic Wars throughout the Third Reich (New York: Fertig, 1975), 1–16. On Cuoco’s view of public, ‘universal’ education and nationhood, see Brancato, Vico nel Risorgimento, 37–38. Casini, L’antica sapienza italica, 193–196, 238–256. The original title is Platone in Italia. Traduzione dal Greco. Cuoco was in effect claiming of having simply translated an original historical ancient Greek manuscript; see Cuoco, Platone in Italia. Traduzione dal greco, vol. 1 (Milan: A. Nobile, 1804), 1–13. See, also, De Francesco, introduction to Platone in Italia, lix. For the flourishing, in late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, several ‘original manuscript’ as a European-wide phenomenon, see Thiesse, La creazione delle identità nazionali in Europa, 107–108. De Francesco, introduction to Platone in Italia, xc; Casini, L’antica sapienza italica, 182–196, 223–225. Annalisa Andreoni, “Vincenzo Cuoco e la questione dell’Omero Italico,” Nuova Rivista di Letteratura italiana 1, no. 2 (1998): 380–382, 386, 393. On the Samnium and its virtues, see Themelly, “Letteratura e politica nell’età napoleonica,” 145. For the anachronistic usage of the adjective/noun Italian in Cuoco, see De Francesco, introduction to Platone in Italia; lxvi; Casini, L’antica sapienza italica, 259.

42  The ‘primacy of the nation’ 32 Themelly, “Letteratura e politica nell’età napoleonica,” 129. 33 Casini, L’antica sapienza italica, 223–238. 34 On the Celtomania and the Académie Celtique under the First French Empire, see De Francesco, The Antiquity of the Italian Nation, 32–36, Thiesse, La creazione delle identità nazionali in Europa, 44–51. 35 De Francesco, introduction to Platone in Italia, xlix–l; De Francesco, The Antiquity of the Italian Nation, 37, 41. 36 De Francesco, introduction to Platone in Italia, lxxx. For its essentially allegorical nature, Mario Themelly argues that the Platone in Italia can by no means be defined as an ‘epistolary’ novel, but, rather, as an ‘allegorical’ one. See Themelly, “Letteratura e politica nell’età napoleonica,” 130. 37 Casini, L’antica sapienza italica, 227–230, 243–247. See, also, De Francesco, introduction to Platone in Italia, lvi–lvii, lxii. On the myth of Pythagorean schools as a model for a reforming élite, see Themelly, “Letteratura e politica nell’età napoleonica,”135. On Pythagoras as a metaphor of people’s identity and as an embodiment of unitary will in Italy, see Cuoco, Platone in Italia, vol. 1, 74, 105; Themelly, “Letteratura e politica nell’età napoleonica,” 135–136. On the role of education for the masses, see Themelly, ibid., 141. On the Free-Masons’ Lodge Grande Oriente and its pro-Napoleon ruling group, see Themelly, ibid., 143. 38 De Francesco, The Antiquity of the Italian Nation, 44–45. On Cuoco’s alleged authoritarianism, Themelly, “Letteratura e politica nell’età napoleonica,” 127, 147–148. For Cuoco and his view on the crucial role of the agrarian upper classes in the state-building process and his contribution to the shaping of the moderatismo liberale in nineteenth-century Italy in Gramsci, see Themelly, ibid., 154. See, also, Albarani, Il mito del primato italiano nella storiografia del Risorgimento, 10–11. 39 Casini, L’antica sapienza italica, 238. For the far-reaching aspects of all themes touched by the Platone, see Themelly, “Letteratura e politica nell’età napoleonica,” 137–138. 40 Albarani, Il mito del primato italiano nella storiografia del Risorgimento, 10. 41 For an exhaustive analysis, see Casini, L’antica sapienza italica, 9–34. 42 Casini, L’antica sapienza italica, 20–24. 43 Casini, ibid., 182–196. 44 On Etruscology, see Casini, L’antica sapienza italica, 1998, 197–222. On Cuoco’s reading of Guarnacci, see De Francesco, The Antiquity of the Italian Nation, 39. 45 Casini, L’antica sapienza italica, 214. 46 It might sound paradoxical in the light of the subsequent archaeological and linguistic studies aiming at resolving the ‘mystery’ of the origin of the Etruscan language, but Guarnacci believed that Etruscan and Latin belonged to the same linguistic group and that there was, accordingly, a continuity between the Etruscan and the other Italic languages. On Guarnacci and the Etruscan language, see Albarani, Il mito del primato italiano nella storiografia del Risorgimento, 49. 47 Casini, L’antica sapienza italica, 215. 48 Casini, ibid., 214–216. For further information on the Pelasgians in the Classics, see Dominique Bricquel, Les Pélasges en Italie: recherches sur l’histoire de la légende (Rome: École française de Rome, 1984). 49 Volterra (Etr. Velàthri) is a town of central Tuscany is well-known for having been one of the most powerful Etruscan city-states. It is still possible today to admire the ruins of the Etruscans fortifications, as well as one of the largest collections of Etruscan archaeological evidence in the municipal museum named after, not by a coincidence, Mario Guarnacci. See “Comune di Volterra, Museo Etrusco Guarnacci: Homepage” last accessed March 6, 2019. http://www. comune.volterra.pi.it/flex/cm/pages/ServeBLOB.php/L/IT/IDPagina/4336.

The ‘primacy of the nation’  43 50 De Francesco, The Antiquity of the Italian Nation, 39–40. 51 De Francesco, ibid., 40–41. Umberto Chiaramonte has noted that the preference of the Italian ‘Jacobins’ for a unitary nation-state owed to an entrenched—and, if we may add, destined to endure, if we think, for example of Mazzini—vision of the older regional dynastic states as power centers of aristocracy; see Chiaramonte, Il dibattito sulle autonomie, 32–37. 52 Vincenzo Cuoco, “Sullo studio delle Lingue,” Giornale Italiano no. 24, February 25, 1804, repr. Vincenzo Cuoco, Scritti giornalistici, vol. 1, Periodo milanese, 1801–1806, ed. Maurizio Martirano (Naples: Fredericiana Editrice Universitaria, 1999) 134–137; see, also Cuoco “Sullo studio dell’antichità,” Corriere di Napoli, no. 100, April 4, 1807, repr. Vincenzo Cuoco, Scritti giornalistici, vol. 2, Periodo napoletano, 1806–1815, ed. Domenico Conte (Naples: Fredericiana Editrice Universitaria, 1999), 119–122. 53 Annalisa Andreoni, “Mitologia e storia della terra nel Platone in Italia di Vincenzo Cuoco: le prove dell’antichità d’Italia dalla Napoli d’antico regime alla Milano Napoleonica,” Società e storia 81 (1998): 554. 54 Cuoco, “Sullo studio dell’antichità,” Corriere di Napoli, no. 100, April 4, 1807, repr. in Cuoco, Scritti giornalistici, vol. 2, Periodo napoletano, 119–122. 55 Cuoco, “‘Principj della civilizzazione de’ selvaggi in Italia,’ di Francesco di Attellis, Marchese di S. Angelo, napoletano, 2 Voll. Napoli, nella stamperia Simoniana presso il gabinetto letterario,” Corriere di Napoli, no. 60, December 31, 1806; no. 63, January 7, 1807; no. 215, December 28, 1807; no. 219, January 6, 1808; repr. Cuoco, Scritti giornalistici, vol. 2 Periodo napoletano, 78–90. 56 Cuoco, ibid., 83. 57 Cuoco, ibid., 84–85. 58 Vincenzo Cuoco, “Sulla storia del genere umano,” Corriere di Napoli, no. 32, October 27, 1806, repr. Cuoco, Scritti giornalistici, vol. 2, Periodo napoletano, 66–67. 59 Cuoco, “‘Principj della civilizzazione de’ selvaggi in Italia.’” 78–90. 60 Vincenzo Cuoco, Abbozzo di lettera a Melchiorre Delfico sulle etimologie, repr. Vincenzo Cuoco, Epistolario, eds. Maurizio Martirano and Domenico Conte (Rome: Laterza, 2007), 372–376. 61 Cuoco, ibid. 62 Cuoco, ibid., 376–380. 63 Vincenzo Cuoco, “Sullo studio delle Lingue,” Giornale Italiano no. 24, February, 25, 1804, repr. Cuoco, Scritti giornalistici, vol. 1, Periodo milanese, 134–137. 64 Cuoco, Abbozzo di lettera all’Accademia Celtica sulla storia antichissima, rpt. in Cuoco, Epistolario, 367–372. See, also, Id. “Accademia Celtica,” Giornale Italiano, no. 114, September, 24, 1805, 2nd appendix, repr. Cuoco, Scritti giornalistici, vol. 1, Periodo milanese, 455–457. 65 Cuoco, “‘Principj della civilizzazione de’ selvaggi in Italia,” 78–90; Cuoco, “‘Congetture su di un antico sbocco dell’Adriatico per la Daunia,’ del signor Arcidiacono Luca Samuele Cagnazzi, Il Corriere di Napoli, no. 177, September, 30, 1807,” repr. Cuoco, Scritti giornalistici, vol. 2, Periodo napoletano, 185–186. 66 Andreoni, “Mitologia e storia della terra nel Platone in Italia di Vincenzo Cuoco,” 547–548. 67 Andreoni, ibid., 577. 68 In dating the existence of an Etruscan empire preexisting Aeneas’ escape to Italy, he cites the works of Giuseppe Maria Riccobaldi Del Bava. See Del Bava, Dissertazione istorico-etrusca sopra l’origine e primo e posteriore stato della città di Volterra […] (Florence: Stamperia Viviani, 1758). See, Cuoco, Abbozzo di lettera all’Accademia Celtica, repr. Cuoco, Epistolario, 367–372. 69 Cuoco, Storia dei sanniti, repr. Cuoco, Platone in Italia. Appendix, eds. Antonino De Francesco and Annalisa Andreoni, 651.

44  The ‘primacy of the nation’ 70 Vincenzo Cuoco, “Storia naturale e storia dei popoli,” Biblioteca Nazionale di Napoli Vittorio Emanuele III MS. XV F97, fasc. 2, cc. 7r-9r, repr. Cuoco, Platone in Italia. Appendice, eds. Antonino De Francesco and Annalisa Andreoni, 630–633. 71 Francisco Villar, Gli indoeuropei e le origini dell’Europa. Lingua e storia (Bologna: Il Mulino, 1997), 21. 72 Villar, Gli Indoeuropei e le origini dell’Europa, 30–32. 73 Andreoni, “Mitologia e storia della terra nel Platone in Italia,” 550; Cuoco, “Sullo studio delle Lingue,” 134–137. On the work of William Jones and the Asiatic Society of Bengal, see Thiesse, La creazione delle identità nazionali in Europa, 169. 74 Cuoco, “Accademia Celtica,” Giornale Italiano no. 114, September 24, 1805, appendix 2, repr. Cuoco, Scritti giornalistici, vol 1, 455–457; Cuoco, Abbozzo di lettera all’Accademia Celtica sulla storia antichissima, repr. Cuoco, Epistolario, 367–372; Cuoco, Abbozzo di lettera a Melchiorre Delfico ancora sulle etimologie, repr. Cuoco, Epistolario, 376–380. 75 Cuoco, Abbozzo di lettera a Melchiorre Delfico sulle etimologie, repr. Cuoco, Epistolario, 376–380. 76 Cuoco, “Capua,” Corriere di Napoli, no 14, September, 15, 1806; no. 19, September, 27, 1806, repr. Cuoco, Scritti giornalistici, vol. 1, Periodo milanese, 41–47; Cuoco, Storia dei Sanniti, Biblioteca Nazionale di Napoli “Vittorio Emanuele III” Ms. XV F97, f.5, cc. 135–136, repr. Cuoco, Platone in Italia. Appendix, eds. Antonino De Francesco and Annalisa Andreoni, 649–652. 77 It must be noted that in the Italian language there is no conceptual distinction between ‘breed’ and ‘race.’ Whether describing dogs, horses, or human beings, Italians have always relied on the term razza, which is now completely discredited in scientific thinking but still largely used in daily vocabulary. For further information regarding the usage of the term razza in modern Italian language, see Treccani. Vocabolario online, last accessed March 6, 2019, http://www. treccani.it/vocabolario/razza/. See, also, Cuoco, Platone in Italia, vol. 1, 203; ibid., vol. 2, 197; ibid., vol. 3, 162. As for the derogatory usage, see Cuoco, Platone in Italia, vol. 1, 189: ‘Ma questa razza di gente vuole il mirabile, e la favola è necessaria per far credere il vero.’ English transl.: ‘But these kinds of people [the uneducated public] want the incredible, and fairy tales are necessary to make them believe the truth.’ 78 Cuoco, Platone in Italia, vol. 2, 17, 158. 79 For the notion of ‘physiological racism,’ see Anthony Pagden, “The Peopling of the New World: Ethnos, Race, and Empire in the Early-Modern World,” in The Origins of Racism in the West, eds. Miriam Eliav-Feldon, Benjamin Isaac, and Joseph Ziegler (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2009), 306. 80 Cuoco, Platone in Italia, vol. 3, 207. 81 Bethencourt, Racisms, 247–248. 82 George Mosse, Towards the Final Solution: A History of European Racism (New York: Fertig, 1978), 1–31; Bethencourt, Racisms, 247–263. 83 Gabriele Pepe, “Necrologio di Vincenzo Cuoco,” L’Antologia 14, no. 40 (1824), 99–105. See, also, De Francesco, Vincenzo Cuoco, 132, 132n, 199n; Domenico Conte and Maurizio Martirano, introduction to Epistolario, xi. 84 Cf. Italian original version: Cuoco, “Sullo studio delle lingue,” repr. Cuoco, Scritti giornalistici, vol. 1, Periodo milanese, 137: “sull’età delle nazioni e sui loro caratteri eterni inalterabili” (emphasis added). 85 Cuoco, “Sulle tracce de’ costumi antichi negli Italiani moderni,” Il Corriere di Napoli, no. 242, March, 5, 1808, repr. Cuoco, Scritti giornalistici, vol. 2, Periodo napoletano, 223 (emphasis added).

The ‘primacy of the nation’  45 86 Cuoco, “Sulla favola Atellana,” repr. Cuoco, Scritti giornalistici, vol. 2, Periodo napoletano, 140–142. 87 Cuoco, Sulla costituzione de’ Sanniti, Biblioteca Nazionale di Napoli “Vittorio Emanuele III” Ms. XV F98, F.30, 2 cc. n. n., repr. Cuoco, Platone in Italia. Appendix, eds. Antonino De Francesco and Annalisa Andreoni, 646–649. 88 Cuoco, Platone in Italia, vol. 3, 250: ‘Etruscans were those ancient progenitors of your whom you call Pelasgians. Of Pelasgian—and therefore Etruscan— provenance were most of those heroes who covered themselves with blood and glory under the walls of Troy.’ 89 On the meaning and usage of the term italico as referred to the ancient autochthonous population of Italy, see “Italico” Treccani. Vocabolario online, last accessed March 6, 2019, http://www.treccani.it/vocabolario/italico/. 90 Cuoco, Platone in Italia, vol. 3, 201. 91 Alberto M. Banti, La nazione del Risorgimento. Parentela, santità e onore alle origini dell’Italia Unita (Turin: Einaudi, 2000), 5. On the persistence of regional identities in Italian nineteenth-century nationalism, Luca Mannori, “Tra nazioni e nazione,” in Nazioni d’Italia: identità politiche e appartenenze regionali fra Settecento e Ottocento, eds. Angela DeBenedictis, Irene Fosi and Luca Mannori (Rome: Viella, 2012), 6–31. 92 Cuoco, Platone in Italia, vol. 3, 45, 151–152. 93 See Antonino De Francesco, L’Italia di Bonaparte, xvii–xviii. Furthermore, as Maurizio Isabella has noted, the most enduring legacy of the Napoleonic rule in Italy consisted of the identification of the nation with the state and its efficient administration and culture; see Maurizio Isabella, Risorgimento in Exile: Italian Émigrés and the Liberal International in the Post-Napoleonic Era (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009), 14. 94 De Francesco, L’Italia di Bonaparte, 83, 89–97, 160–167. On the tensions between the allegiance to the ‘Neapolitan’ and ‘Italian’ nations, see Aurelio Musi “La nazione napoletana prima della nazione italiana,” in Nazioni d’Italia, 75–89. 95 De Francesco, The Antiquity of the Italian Nation, 49–50. An exemplary case of harsh criticism to the Platone is represented by the review by Padua University professor Melchiorre Cesarotti, who censured the badly organized structure of the novel as well as its verboseness. See De Francesco, introduction to Platone in Italia by Vincenzo Cuoco, cxxx–cxxxi. A case of welcoming reception is represented, however, by Wilhelm Von Humboldt’s positive review of the book as well as his call to translate into German; see De Francesco, introduction to Platone in Italia by Vincenzo Cuoco, cxviii–cxxvii. On the good reception in France and Germany, also see Domenico Conte and Maurizio Martirano, introduction to Epistolario, 2007, xliv–xlv. Brancato, on the other hand, talks about a ‘considerable success’ of the Platone. Cf. Brancato, Vico nel Risorgimento, 23, 31. 96 Casini, L’antica sapienza italica, 261. 97 Casini, ibid., 262. 98 Casini, ibid., 261–262. 99 Casini, ibid., 262–330; Albarani, Il mito del primato italiano nella storiografia del Risorgimento, 101–142. 100 Giustiniano Nicolucci, Delle razze umane. Saggio etnologico (Naples: Fibreno, 1857–1858), 2: 317n. See, also, Maria S. Quine, “Making Italians,” in Crafting Humans: From Genesis to Eugenics and Beyond, ed. Marius Turda (Gottingen: V&R Unipress), 134–135; Antonella Romani, “Giustiniano Nicolucci antropólogo y prehistoriador de la Italia postunitaria. Los ibero-ligures y otros pueblos de Italia antigua,” Boletin del Museo Arqueológico Nacional 36 (2017): 123; and Chapter 6 of this book.

2

A plural Italy? Archaeology, linguistics, and racial types in the Restoration age

In his 1832 treatise on pre-Roman Italy, the Livornese historian and archaeologist Giuseppe Micali (1768–1844) drew from the traits of Etruscan sculptures to defend the thesis of a substantial biological continuity between the ancient and modern inhabitants of the Peninsula. Even after two thousand years, the Etruscan physical ‘type’ was identical to the ‘modern Tuscan’ one—he affirmed—which was the ‘same of the diverse race of Caucasus.’ Micali’s interest in the Etruscans was also shared, as we have seen in the previous chapter, by the Neapolitan revolutionary Vincenzo Cuoco. Admittedly, the unitary Cuoco regarded the Etruscans as the ‘fathers’ of all Italians, and also maintained that, in terms of culture, language, and even ‘character,’ modern Italians were essentially the same as their pre-Roman counterparts. Cuoco and Micali were not alone in their interest in the Etruscans: other influential Risorgimento figures would regard this native Italic population as the quintessentially superior Italian civilization, devoid of the violent and ominous traits of the imperialistic and tyrannical Romans. In addition, both scholars portrayed modern Italians—or at least, in the case of Micali, some of them—as the direct ‘biological’ continuation of their Etruscan ancestors. Their diverging interpretation of Italic antiquity, as well as their different attitudes toward the prospect of an independent Italian nation-state, although relevant, do not stand out as their most striking difference. What really seems to distinguish Micali from Cuoco, besides the idea of the diverse ethnic background of the Italians, is the definition of the ‘universal Italian race’ as the physical ‘type’ of the ‘Caucasus.’ Micali’s ‘phenotypization’ of the idea of race— now clearly imprinted in the bodies and faces of the Italians—seems to have passed almost unnoticed even in the most recent works on Risorgimento historiography and ethnography. I contend, however, that such an important shift to the notion of race as ‘type’ marks the emergence of a new racialist taxonomy articulated on the division between the broader ‘races’ or ‘varieties’ of the late eighteenth-century natural history of man, and the ‘type’ as a sort of sub-regional, or, more accurately, national physical morphological specificity.

A plural Italy?  47 This transition from the older, common understanding of race as a ‘lineage/stock’ to the newer categories of the natural history of man is exemplified by the research activity of the renowned geographer and statistician Adriano Balbi (1782–1848). Basing his study on late eighteenth-century naturalists, Balbi employs the notion of race as a ‘physical variety’ from the beginning of his research as a tool for the study and the classification of human groups. Placed at the intersection between the natural world and human societal organizations, race constitutes a valid instrument to understand both the adaptation of human beings to their original respective environment, and their migrations and, therefore, the timeline of human expansion across the world. Although Balbi includes race among the fundamental criteria for his ‘geography of man,’ when it comes to explaining the more specific subdivision of humanity into ethnicities and nations, he prefers to resort to the more reliable findings of comparative linguistics. What stands out among the arguments made by the Venetian geographer are the substantial disagreements among naturalists over the definitive number of human ‘varieties,’ along with the idea that physical and linguistic descent have not necessarily followed the same path. This critical approach to various classifications expounded by eighteenthand nineteenth-century naturalists does not imply, however, that Balbi intended to completely discredit the natural history of man. In fact, his caution toward the ongoing debate concerning the most accurate classification of humankind did not prevent him from popularizing the new naturalistic taxonomical understanding of race through a series of well-known and voluminous studies, which also tended to represent nations as a ‘natural’ fact to be quantified and represented through numbers and data. It is evident in Balbi’s works that the older notion of race as a lineage gradually cedes to the new understanding as human physical ‘variety.’ Balbi himself, by insisting on describing the genesis of European nationalities as a ‘mixing of races,’ casts several doubts on the existence of pure national lineages, while, on the other hand, deeming race as a physical ‘variety’ as a useful heuristic tool for the mapping of the genesis and migrations of broader human groups.

Our ‘universal Italian race’: Giuseppe Micali and the Etruscans Until today, we have never had a book concerning ancient Italy imagined on such a vast scale and executed with such impressive learning. Some would have preferred that the author had not neglected certain explorations which formed part of his subject. The question, for example, of the origins of the Italian people still offers a wide field for many useful and ingenious investigations; the physical state of primitive Italy may, and indeed does, shed much light on the genealogy of the Italian peoples […] it is above all a pity that the author, in speaking of Italian philosophy, did not follow at least a little in the tracks of Vico: he could

48  A plural Italy? have demonstrated that the philosophy of the Italians was essentially different from that of the Greeks, and was their own; and explained more clearly to us what this philosophy was. Concerning the laws of various of our cities of Magna Græcia, he has followed the commonest opinions, which are not always the truest, and so forth. But we should remember the famous saying of Montesquieu: a book must be judged for what it is, and not for what it might have been. And the book that Sig. Micali has given us is excellent indeed.1 Few people were more enthusiastic about the recent voluminous monograph on Italian antiquities than Vincenzo Cuoco, who in the Neapolitan newspaper Monitore delle Due Sicilie of May 20, 1811 reviewed the recently published L’Italia avanti il dominio dei romani (‘Italy before the Roman Dominion’) by Giuseppe Micali. As Antonino De Francesco points out, the highly complimentary review could not conceal, a note of melancholic disappointment, since Micali’s analysis, as Cuoco observes, does seem to follow Vico’s approach to the study of the Italic antiquities.2 Micali’s work on pre-Roman Italy seemed, at first glance, to fully confirm Cuoco’s conclusions about the autochthony and the primacy of Italic culture. Moreover, this detailed investigation about the primeval ethnicities of the Peninsula was presented as an act of ‘justice’ to the ‘forgotten memory’ of the first ‘Italians.’3 Yet, a few aspects of Micali’s writings are different, if not blatantly antithetical, to Cuoco’s thesis. In fact, Micali seems to draw no inspiration from Cuoco, to the point that he makes no reference either to Cuoco’s Platone in Italia or to his other articles and writings on the Etruscans. L’Italia avanti il dominio dei romani certainly aims at unveiling the ‘glorious’ past of pre-Roman Italy but, unlike Cuoco’s work, it is not structured as a historical novel with a primary scope of demonstrating the existence ab antiquo of unitary Italian nationhood. Rather, this ‘homage to the Italic world’ consists primarily of a historical and archaeological investigation which, although following in the footsteps of eighteenth-century antiquarian and erudite traditions, was fully conversant with the ongoing scholarly debate.4 Most of all—and pace Cuoco— Micali’s discovery seems to come to quite opposite conclusions, casting doubt on the ethnic homogeneity of the Italians. This emphasis on diversity, rather than ethnic homogeneity—and therefore unity—of the Italians has led scholars to question the extent to which Micali can be considered part of the patriotic (even in an increasingly anti-Bonapartist) field or, on the other hand, part of the rank-and-file of Restoration’s apologists.5 A homage to the Italic past The four-volume L’Italia avanti il dominio dei romani, published in Florence in 1810, can be essentially divided into two main thematic sections: the first two volumes are devoted to the ethnographic description of pre-Roman

A plural Italy?  49 Italy, while the second two are chiefly concerned with the events that led to the consolidation of the Roman rule over the Peninsula. These events, spanning from the alleged foundation of Rome in 753 BCE to the end of the Social War marking the definitive juridical Romanization of peninsular Italy in 88 BCE, are narrated from the standpoint of each Italic population which unsuccessfully strove to contain and defeat Roman expansionism. The same organizational scheme is repeated in the following editions of the book, but changed in the three-volume Storia degli antichi popoli italiani (‘History of the Ancient Italian Peoples’) published in 1832. In this case, the first two volumes served as a thorough ethno-historical examination of the pre-Roman Italic ethnicities, while the third one consists of the descriptions of several iconographic and archaeological artifacts contained in an attached album.6 In comparison to the style and the imaginary narrative of Cuoco, Micali’s prose displays a sober approach to the examination of Italic antiquities. Yet, the philologist Sebastiano Timpanaro includes Micali in that current of ‘eighteenth-century Etrusco-maniacs’ whose research ‘had remained halfway between erudition and fiction (for example the Platone in Italia by Cuoco) without evolving into modern historiography.’7 This portrayal of Micali appears, however, too harsh on the Livornese author, who determined to present his research as an effort to meet strict historiographical standards. In his research, he stated, no space was left for the analysis of legends, myths, and, most of all, the investigation of eras lacking in any reliable written evidence.8 For example, the Pelasgians—whom Cuoco, along with a part of eighteenth-century Etruscology, treats as the ancestors of Greek and Latins, as well as the missing link between Western Europe and the more advanced Middle East—are quickly dismissed as people of semi-barbarian vagrant pirates and seafarers, who were actually civilized and easily absorbed by their superior Italic neighbors.9 Wary of myths and legends (which he actually considers to be the evidence of the lack of any reliable source on the prehistorical past), Micali distrusts the accounts of great primeval migrations that are not supported by clear documentary evidence.10 In this sense, the historian Micali seems definitively more categorical than the public intellectual Cuoco in asserting the autochthony of the Italic/ Italian civilization and culture. There is, in fact, no evidence of any great migration to Italy prior to the Etruscans who, as Micali asserts (not without a hint of that exaggeration that he purports to counter), were already flourishing and able seafarers since ‘heroic times.’11 The only verified ‘allochthonous’ contributions to the ethnic makeup of Italy, he concludes, are to be discovered through the examination of the reliable archaeological and historiographical sources: The duty that we impose on ourselves not to provide any explanation without the factual validation, the authority of writers, and the support of archaeological evidence, prevent us from taking into consideration the erudite pretensions of those authors who through unclear

50  A plural Italy? interpretations of unreliable sources hypothesized [the presence] in Italy of Canaanites, Phoenicians, Ethiopians, Celto-Scythians or Cantambrians in a distant past. We are going to examine elsewhere which [hypotheses] can be considered the most reliable with respect to the alleged arrival of Pelasgians and Lydians before the Trojan events; yet, by already limiting [our speculations] within the realm of historical certainties, we cannot prove any migration of foreign populations prior to the Greek settlement in the South and the first Gaul invasion from the Alps during the reign of Tarquin the Elder. The arrival of those two different nations from the extremities of the Peninsula caused deep transformations in the great majority of our populations, although a long series of domestic and national events had already been the reason of nonnegligible turmoil, which we are going to gradually reconstruct through the examination of the sources in our possession.12 Essentially, as is clear from this excerpt, the history of ancient pre-Roman Italy can be reconstructed as the encounter and relations between the native Italic peoples, the Greeks, and the Celts. Among the first, as Micali clearly points out, the Etruscans stand as the cradle of the civilization in the Peninsula, as well as the main obstacle to the subsequent Roman conquest. And, indeed it is Rome, and not Greek historians, as Micali continues, that must be blamed for the cultural ‘obliteration’ of previous Italic civilizations. Far from completely rejecting the classical topos of Græcia Mendax, in fact, the author of Italia avanti il dominio dei romani maintains that the forced oblivion of the Italic and Etruscan cultural and political achievements cannot be explained only in terms of the ethnocentrism of the Greek historians and ethnographers.13 Rather, the Hellenization of Italic culture and the erasure of its memories was the outcome of the ongoing political subjugation to Rome. In other words, Roman power was more willing to absorb and promote the culture and the mythologies of its neighboring Greek settlers rather than to preserve its Italic heritage, which seemed too similar to the one of the Etruscans, the Samnites, or any of its other enemies on the Peninsula. Meanwhile, as the Romans were consolidating their dominion in peninsular Italy through the support of the Greek Italiotes, Celtic invasions had altered the ethnic makeup of the Po valley and the Alps. Micali’s ancient Italy seems, therefore, from an ethno-historical standpoint, a ‘plural’ nation. The geography itself favored the fragmentation of ethnicities and prevented their conglomeration into a ‘single national body,’ which the subsequent Greek and Celtic settlements ended up further complicating.14 Romanization is presented, on the other hand, as an attempt at political and cultural amalgamation resulting from the predominance of one Italic group— the citizens of Rome—over all the others. Such a process undermined the primeval Latin language, which was gradually ‘estranged’ from its EtruscanOscan greater family in favor of a politically meditated Hellenization.15

A plural Italy?  51 An anti-Bonapartist (and anti-unitary) book? When reading Micali’s descriptions of how the Italic civilizations were gradually eroded by the expansionist Roman power, it is difficult not to recall the anti-Napoleonic polemic of those years. After all, this voluminous research on the Italic past was first published in 1810, at the zenith of Bonaparte’s rule (and just a few years after Cuoco’s Platone in Italia) and eventually republished in 1821, to be finally readapted in 1832, at the high tide of Restoration. Although the 1832 Storia degli antichi popoli italiani displays a decrease of anti-Roman tones, Rome is still portrayed by Micali as a controversial political actor.16 It is thus not far-fetched for modern readers to see in the civilized but corrupting Greeks and the suffocating Romans—exactly as in Cuoco’s Platone—the ambivalent role of France as a liberator and ruler. Can we, therefore, consider L’Italia avanti il dominio dei romani and Storia degli antichi popoli italiani a part of that current of historical patriotism inaugurated by the more ‘militant’ (and fanciful) Cuoco? It is undeniable that the intellectual activity of Giuseppe Micali was influenced by the developments of the Revolution in France and Italy in particular. As far as we know, the young Micali experienced de visu the events that would lead to the demise of the Jacobin Committee of Public Safety and the advent of the Directorate as a clerk of the Grand Duchy of Tuscany’s legation to Paris.17 Fully immersed in the environment of the Italian and European Enlightenment, he was by no means hostile to the winds of change blowing from France. His friendship with the Jacobin Giovanni Fantoni (1755–1807) is, on the contrary, a proof of his initial radical-democratic convictions.18 It seems that Micali’s initial enthusiasm with the Revolution started to fade with the advent of the Thermidorian reaction and the consolidation of the Directorate, and further deteriorated with the Napoleonic conquest of Italy.19 Against this backdrop, it is easy to imagine Micali as a sort of disillusioned ‘Jacobin’ intellectual who, after having turned into a skeptical observer of events, eventually retreated into his scholarly endeavors. Undoubtedly, Micali’s life seems to adhere, to a certain extent, to this path of gradual estrangement from direct political involvement. There is, however, another important aspect of Micali’s intellectual development that must be taken into account. If it is almost certain that he began drafting Italia avanti il dominio dei romani in 1797–1799, and therefore amidst the predicaments of the Jacobin Triennium, the general layout of his research aimed at investigating neglected Italic ethnicities can be seen in his correspondence with his mentor and friend Melchiorre Delfico (1744–1835) already by the early 1790s.20 As Piero Treves points out, the image of Micali’s 1810 book as an anti-Bonapartist pamphlet has been grossly exaggerated by some contemporaries, among them Barthold Georg Niebuhr (1776–1831); it therefore may be maintained that Micali’s works, though undoubtedly influenced by ongoing events, already contained some of those Enlightenment reflections and critiques which he would later direct at Bonapartism. In other words,

52  A plural Italy? as Treves perceptively claims, it was Italia avanti il dominio dei romani that preceded Bonapartism, and not vice-versa.21 Such a conclusion may sound less hyperbolic if we pause on the cultural and political upbringing of Micali. As Treves and De Francesco point out, Micali was familiar with Montesquieu’s reflection on the strengths and weaknesses of governments, and, in particular, the federal republican model, as well as the predicaments of the ancient Italian city-states in dealing with an external threat. For the Livorno-born Micali, initially interested in federal systems and the survival of a Tuscan state, the gradual deprivation of sovereignty and the subsequent annexation of the Grand Duchy of Tuscany to the French Empire in 1809 may have represented a great disappointment as well as a further stimulus for his research. In this sense, as De Francesco emphasizes, Micali’s studies may be read as an ‘anguished’ reflection on the causes of the collapse of the smaller Italian states in the face of the greater European powers.22 By the time of the publication of Italia avanti il dominio dei romani, it is clear, however, that Micali, far from being a dissident, emerged as a renowned intellectual who abstained from any direct political involvement, and who was primarily interested in Italian identity as a cultural element to be preserved from any political purpose.23 Micali’s interest in presenting his research as devoid of any political bias may appear an awkward attempt to defend his public image in light of the rumors that surrounded his relationships with powerful and influential personalities.24 Aside from these polemics, there seems to be, however, a genuine motivation in defending the objectiveness of his historical work. Far from unearthing scattered relics and myths of the past to ‘fabricate’ an Italian nationality, Micali seems fundamentally determined to develop and, hopefully, address many of the questions raised by eighteenth-century archaeology and antiquarianism by offering the most comprehensive reconstruction of Italic antiquities.25 It is not a coincidence indeed that, aside from a few negative reviews, both Italia avanti il dominio dei romani and Storia degli antichi popoli Italiani received a welcome reception from critics and the broader public, and became a sort of mandatory reading for Risorgimento intelligentsia well into the 1850s.26 After all, in spite of the author’s manifest apolitical intentions, both voluminous studies were presented, as we have seen, as an act of ‘justice’ to the ‘fatherland’ and the memory of the first Italians.27 The anti-Roman sentiment hinted at a critique of the hegemonic pretensions of the French, as well as a defense of the particularity of Italian culture. On the other hand, the thesis of an ethnically diverse ancient Italy was undoubtedly extremely palatable to an entrenched political tradition of localism and regionalism, which itself was far from being deleted by the Revolutionary experience. Both books are characterized by thorough ethnographic digressions on the different Italic peoples, their customs, their political institutions, and their legacy. Micali emphasizes, in describing the natives of the Peninsula, the intimate link between their love for independence and their military prowess.

A plural Italy?  53 The Italics are therefore portrayed—like in Cuoco’s Platone in Italia—as proud, frugal, republican citizen-soldiers, defending their territories from Greek and Roman encroachments.28 On the other hand, the politically ‘neutral’ Micali seems to profoundly differ from the ‘unitary’ Cuoco in explaining the relationship between Italics and Etruscans, since the latter are not described as the ancestors of all the native populations of the Peninsula. Nonetheless, such an apparent downplaying of the ethnic predominance of the Etruscans does not actually diminish their crucial role in defining the Italian identity: Micali undoubtedly portrays them as the only great autochthonous civilization of the Peninsula. For example, he refers to them as ‘our nation,’ and such identification eventually transcended the boundaries of a mere ethnic and biological lineage to acquire clear racialist connotations.29 Furthermore, the Etruscans are presented as the founders of Italian urbanism and civilization, and their sistema federativo—consisting of a league of twelve federated city-states—as the source of their unity, power, as well as their main barrier to aggressive expansionism and militarism.30 As expected, the image of a plural, federal Italy—whose traces are presented as recognizable throughout the entire national history—was too suggestive and enticing not to be deployed in the cultural and, most of all, political debate surrounding the very identity of the Italians. For its wide array of sources introduced and commented upon, Micali offered, as De Francesco notes, ‘plenty of scope for everyone—from the nationalist movement to partisans of the Restoration, from moderates to radicals, from conservatives to democrats’ and, if we may add, from the defenders of the 1815 status quo to the proponents of a federal Italian state.31 For those who defended the Restoration of the old order, Micali’s eulogy of the ancient Italic populations resembled the old rhetoric of the dynastic and municipal pride of the eighteenth century. Moreover, they found in Micali’s pages an inexhaustible source for legitimizing a return to the smaller regional states, as well as for the tirades against the leveling (and unitary) pretensions of ‘Rome.’32 However, among pro-Risorgimento patrioti, the leagues of independent Italic and Etruscan city-states were a source of inspiration for the federal layout of the future Italian statehood. The federalist democrat Carlo Cattaneo, for example, focused on the Etruscan city-state as the embryo of peculiar Italian municipal freedoms, while the Catholic Vincenzo Gioberti—who proposed an Italian confederation under the guidance of the Pope—clearly drew inspiration from Micali’s ethnography of the regional differences of the Peninsula.33 Yet, even those who held a positive view of Rome, or who certainly did not share federalist or regionalist views, like the unitary republican Giuseppe Mazzini, could not overlook the plural Italic past. Mazzini, for example, was extremely wary of any excessive interest in Italic antiquities, which he interpreted as a form of disguised propaganda for the old regional or local states of the Peninsula and their related dynasties.34 Yet, the republican leader— who praised the role of Rome as the ‘mold’ of one Italian identity—seemed

54  A plural Italy? to echo the tones of Micali’s prose when referring to the beginnings of the Italian nationality: Once [the writer] has demonstrated [by relying on] the relics of religions along with the modern ethnographic discoveries, the absolute independence of our primeval social and cultural development from the following Greek civilization, he can proceed to describe the beginnings of our Nationality in the Sabellic tribes. [These tribes] settled, as I said, around the ancient Amiternum, after having united with the Oscans, the Sicels, and the Umbrians, took as first the name of ‘Italy,’ and by having started the fusion of the different [ethnic] elements scattered all across the Peninsula they moved to hammer their spear—the symbol of sovereignty —in the valley of the Tiber river, and in the Campania and beyond. This was the first war of independence of the Italian [ethnic] element against that element, probably of Semitic origins, anciently defined as Pelasgian.35 For that matter, Mazzini was not alone in acknowledging that at least pre-Roman Italy was characterized by the presence of many different ethnicities which were eventually compacted into a single nationality by the Romanization process. The federalist (but monarchist) moderate Cesare Balbo also believed that Italians did not descend from one ‘pure’ ‘stock’ or ‘blood,’ and paid attention to the plurality of peoples inhabiting the ancient Peninsula and subsequent merging into one national body.36 In short, even those who believed in the unity and homogeneity of the Italian nation could hardly deny the evidence posited by Micali of ethnically plural antiquity, shaped by the repeated intermingling of native and foreign ‘bloods’ and ‘stocks.’ Further, almost everyone who approached, although under different political orientations, the question of the ethnic composition of the Italian nation—the question, in other words, of a national ‘blood,’ ‘lineage,’ ‘stock,’ or a ‘race’—could not abstain from considering the work of Micali. The ‘primitive Italics’ between autochthony and polygenism What surely fascinated them about Micali’s ethnography was its historical and archaeological soundness, along with the thesis of a supposed cultural and even biological continuity between the Italics and the Italians that forbade the indifference of the nationalist intelligentsia. First, Micali was even more unyielding than Cuoco in asserting the complete autochthony of the Italics and, most of all, of the Etruscan civilization. A modern reader might, however, be puzzled by the fact that Micali does not even seem to care to explain how the first prehistoric inhabitants may have settled in the Peninsula: Had historical soundness, rather than simple erudition, guided scholars in their research about the primitive Italics, we would have not assisted

A plural Italy?  55 those theorems forcing us to resort to thinking about Egypt, Greece, Asia, or the North in order to rediscover the vague traces of our fathers. The obscurity and the uncertainty of centuries isolated from history are in effect favorable to any hypothesis, but [still] our ignorance remains the same.37 In this interpretation, there were no great migrations, no primeval paths from the heartland of Asia, nor peregrinations across the Mediterranean: nothing other than that which can be proven through a strictly historical investigation seems to concern the Livornese historian. The criticism of Micali appears quite surprising if we consider the flourishing of comparative linguistic studies in the 1810s, along with his criticism of the studies of etymologies aiming at demonstrating a descent of the Italic populations from a common European ancestor.38 For example, the hypotheses of William Jones regarding common cults binding together ancient Indian and European deities are dismissed both in 1810 and 1821 as a ‘fantasy,’ and there seems to be no mention of the pivotal 1816 linguistic work of Franz Bopp in the later Storia degli antichi popoli italiani.39 Rather, Micali seems inclined to deny not only the possibility of great Indo-European migration, but the very idea of a great migration per se: Today the natural history of man and the great discoveries of modern travelers have demonstrated that humankind cannot derive either from one place or from one climate only. Man belongs to the entire earth, which nature has donated to him for his sustenance and his perpetual development. Our curiosity is wearing itself out by investigating through useless and toilsome attempts the origin of nations […] Without the help of history, we would fruitlessly try to determine with some degree of certainty the development of humankind in the earliest stages if its societal life; yet, if we limit our research by adhering more scrupulously to our capabilities, it is nature itself which suggests us those countries where the climate is more generous in providing means of sustenance, and which, accordingly, could have been populated more easily.40 In reading these few lines, Micali’s case for the autochthony of the Italic peoples seems stretched to the point of becoming a full-fledged polygenic hypothesis regarding the origin of humankind. Two passages in particular— one, concerning man’s impossibility to derive from one place only, and the other, stressing humankind’s belonging to the ‘entire’ earth—leave no doubts about his rejection of monogenic thesis arguing for a common ancestor of the whole humanity. Such a position, far from being isolated, would be eventually shared by the democratic and federalist intellectual Carlo Cattaneo.41 Aside from these few considerations about the origins of humankind, Micali does not seem particularly keen to delve into the investigation of prehistory, and prefers, as he repeatedly points out, to pursue a strictly

56  A plural Italy? historiographical approach based on the examination of the written historical and archaeological documentation. Therefore, as Coen points out, Micali’s insistence on the ‘indigenousness’ of the Italics rests on an unstable argumentative architecture, since his rigid historical approach prevents him from delving into prehistoric Italy save for a few scattered hypotheses. Micali’s thesis would seem, in other words, more based on the exclusive use of historiography, rather than an articulated and critical examination of non-historiographical approaches.42 Quite paradoxically, in fact, Micali’s defense of the autochthony of the Etruscan people and civilization rests on the examination of those Greek sources that he previously criticized for having deliberately downplayed and erased the Italic cultures. Probably aware of this apparent contradiction, Micali seems impatient to clarify the multiplicity of Greek opinions concerning the veracity of their own myths and legends, and, in particular, the skepticism of some authors and philosophers toward certain jingoistic distortions.43 The refutation of the theory about a great migration of the Etruscans from Asia Minor to Etruria—first systematized and defended by Herodotus in fifth century BCE—relies indeed on another Greek historian, Dionysius of Halicarnassus (first century BCE), who, conversely, argued for their Italic origins. In sharing the standpoint of the latter, Micali points out not only the evident cultural and linguistic differences between the Etruscans and the Lydians of the Aegean Sea, but also the inexplicable omission by other sources of such an allegedly considerable (and therefore easily noticeable) migration. Yet, according to Micali, the popularity of Herodotus’ theory must be blamed not only on Greek authors, but also on a deliberate forgery of the early Roman imperial age. In this case, as Micali notes, the descendants of the Etruscans themselves were the first ones to create a fictitious Greek or Lydian descent, and to deny the historical fact of the Etruscan autochthony in order to ingratiate their Roman protectors and to ensure their acceptance and protection within the senatorial and the imperial power.44 If Herodotus’ theory about a foreign provenance of the Etruscans is rapidly dismissed, Micali appears, however, equally critical of the modern research activity of Barthold Georg Niebuhr over a supposed Rhaetian origin of the ancient inhabitants of Tuscany. In the 1832 book, besides the respectful homage to the recently passed-away Danish scholar, Micali argues that the hypothesis of an Alpine origin of the ancient Tuscans is proven wrong by the same Greek and Latin sources employed by Niebuhr. As a matter of fact, these sources do not seem to mention the Rhaetian homeland of the Etruscans, nor the survival of any traceable relationship with that region.45 Again, as Micali repeatedly states, the origin of the Etruscan people is too obscure to rely on any grand theory resting on the imaginary hypothesis of a great migration which is curiously never attested to by the ancient sources, nor confirmed by any linguistic evidence. As further proof of their autochthony, Micali brings the undeniable evidence of the complete obscurity of the Etruscan language, which attests to

A plural Italy?  57 the complete extraneousness of this Italic population to the other Greek or even European idioms.46 As we will see, in fact, the subsequent and timid openness to Indo-European linguistics does not imply for Micali the possibility of any great ethnic influx of the Etruscans, conceived as the greatest manifestation of Italic autochthony. However, over time, Micali seems to apply less consistently his theory of a complete indigenousness of the Italics when it comes to investigating the cultural and civilizational relationship between the Etruscans and the rest of the Mediterranean basin. While in the 1810 study, for example, the flourishing of the Etruscan civilization is presented as a quintessential native phenomenon without any foreign contribution, in the subsequent work of 1832 Micali opens to the hypothesis of a broader ‘civilizing path’ reaching Italy. The origin of this civilizational process is, of course, not found in Greece nor in the Aegean, but in the Middle East and Egypt. With respect to the specific modality and age of such diffusion, Micali hypothesizes that the conquest of Egypt by ‘Hikschos’ (sic) facilitated the spreading of Egyptian culture overseas.47 In this sense, Micali, who had never paid any particular interest to the erudite and antiquarian debate surrounding the classical theme of the Antiqua Sapientia Italica, seems to pay homage to the eighteenth-century tradition of Vico and the Etruscologists like Guarnacci in identifying Egyptian cultural colonization of the ancestors of the Etruscans. In other words, when discussing the inception of civilization in the primitive Peninsula— and not, as we have seen, the biological descent of the Italics—even the staunchest ‘autochthonist’ seems to finally concede to the possibility of the external origin of the remote Etruscan incivilimento.48 A plural Italy? With respect, however, to those contributions informing not only the culture, but the ethnic makeup of the Italians—that is, mostly the Greeks and Celts—Micali becomes less clear, perfunctory even. The demographic contribution of the Greeks to Southern Italy’s ethnic pattern is substantially downplayed as the Greek Italiotes are portrayed as essentially confined to the shores by the fiery resistance of the belligerent Italic tribes and populations. Micali describes the Southern Italian inland and highlands as never durably conquered by the Greek settlers, but rather always in the hands of the ‘nationals’ who ‘did not miss a chance to take revenge on the Greeks’ repeated abuses and insults.’49 Yet, the same Micali in the following lines explains how such scenery of harsh contrast between the indigenous Italics and the Greek Italiotes needs to be softened. The gallant Italics were indeed fighting against the Greek invaders, but could not remain completely unresponsive to the power of their culture: A population never abandons its character [once it leaves] the native land: [the character] follows the population, along with its language

58  A plural Italy? and customs. Similarly, the Greeks transplanted in Italy preserved the same passions and the same the mobility of spirit that they displayed in their motherland. The wars that they waged against our peoples, as well as the communication that they gradually established with [the Italics], had a great influence on the condition of those provinces. The human spirit is inherently prone to emulation. Men cannot mix with each other for long without reciprocally influencing each other both in terms of qualities and defects. That strong inclination which drives us to social life make us also easily adopt the manners and customs of our neighbors; and every time that the needs of two different peoples make them approach each other, it is impossible that from such a relationship would not result a certain empathic exchange which is destined to produce a sensible mutation in terms of character and habits. This seems, at least, the destiny of those portion of Italians who, due to their proximity, engaged in regular commerce with the Greeks, from whom they adopted courteous manners along with the language. And indeed, even though several centuries went by, it is still possible to see in the inhabitants of the Calabrie [here Micali refers both to the actual Calabria and to the historical Latin one, that is, the modern Salento, in Apulia] the brilliance, the sharp ingenuity, and the strong passions which characterized the Italiotes. To a careful observer, all of Southern Italy shows several unique similarities between the ancient customs and modern popular habits […] A certain inclination for the sensual pleasures, and an ardent passion for dancing and singing can be regarded as generally dominant in both Calabrie. The lively Apulian dance, as known as the Tarantula, is reputed with strong plausibility to be a relic of the ancient bacchanalia […]. In the same way, the robust shape of men, as well as certain patience in enduring fatigue, along with an intrepid attitude, are today qualities dominant in the mountains, and which characterize the bellicose populations of those provinces. The rough apparel, the rustic manners, and the strident sounds [of the dialect] of the shepherds of the Calabrie give them a rough and savage appearance [;] yet they are kind and hospitable by nature, like the ancient Calabrians and Lucanians [.] Lastly, the subservience and the respect that the young peasants manifest toward their own relatives [still] remind one of the strict upbringing and the filial obedience [typical] of Samnites.50 As this passage suggests, the populations of the Mezzogiorno still bear the signs of a profound and indelible Greek influence. The contrast, however, between the ‘sensual’ character of the people of Salento with the ‘savage’ and ‘robust,’ yet ‘patient,’ ‘loyal,’ and ‘obedient’ peasants of the Basilicata and inner ‘Calabrie’ is sufficient to remind us that a complete fusion and assimilation never took place. Micali does not seem, in effect, particularly careful when he delves into the geographical and historical details of the assimilation process, nor does he reconstruct its pervasiveness in modern

A plural Italy?  59 Southern Italian culture. When compared to his voluminous and detailed analyses of the Italic populations, his reconstruction of the Greek settlement in the South appears extremely hasty and summary. After reading these pages, one might still wonder the extent to which Greek settlers effectively managed to profoundly change the culture of the Mezzogiorno. Micali adopts a similar approach in dealing with the Celts and their ethnic remapping of modern Italy beginning in the fourth century BCE. He meticulously narrates the successive waves of conquests of the Alpine region and Po valley by the ‘Gauls.’ From his descriptions, one can deduce their barbaric primitive customs and their extreme bellicosity, as well as the incapacity of the Etruscan power—already diminished by Roman expansionism—to cope with the threat. As a result of this fatal interplay of factors, adds Micali, the ‘barbaric’ Celts managed to subdue and displace all the previous inhabitants of Northern Italy. In particular, as the author underlines, with the displacement of the Etruscans, the entire urban civilization experienced a tremendous setback and delay until its recovery with Roman colonization four centuries later.51 Aside from such a gloomy portrait of the future development of Northern Italy, however, Micali does not seem particularly eager to delve into the legacy of the Gallic culture in the North. Like the Greeks—and perhaps more so than the Greeks—the Gauls are portrayed as a ‘foreign body,’ bearers of a devastating impact on the Italic societal and ethnic pattern. There is little interest in their culture and habits, and the tone veers close to derogatory.52 Thus, if readers deduce that after the Celtic invasion the Po valley was forever changed, Micali seems indifferent to their contribution to the northern regional and local peculiarities as he does, though minimally, for the Italiotes of the South. These flaws in the description of Greek and Celtic influence are undoubtedly disappointing for modern readers, especially if one compares the few paragraphs devoted to those two ‘foreign’ populations with the overabundant and detailed description of each Italic ethnicity. It is necessary to remember, however, that Micali essentially aimed—as the titles of both books suggest—at the rediscovery of those autochthonous Italic populations unfairly neglected by the dominant ethnographic (and political) narratives of Romanism and Celticism. Like any endeavor protracted for several years, Micali’s books display changes which we must examine to map the evolution of his relationship to the ongoing cultural debate. In 1832, Micali prefaces the new book by explicitly toning down his previous anti-Greek and antiRoman tirades.53 Most of all, in the Storia degli antichi popoli Italiani, he appears less critical of the new comparative linguistics, and more cautiously open to new theories. For the first time, an author does not immediately dismiss as ‘fantasy’ a probable linguistic and cultural kinship with India, and acknowledges the hypothesis of a greater linguistic family spreading from Asia and spanning from the ‘Indus’ river to ‘Iceland.’54 It would be necessary, however, to wait for his last compendium—the Monumenti inediti a illustrazione della storia degli antichi popoli Italiani (1844)—to see the new

60  A plural Italy? Indo-European linguistics explained in the preface and fully recognized as a legitimate and useful discipline.55 Apart from these changes, Micali’s works present a substantial cohesion when it comes to the main pillars of his argument: first, as we have seen, the theme of the autochthony of the Italic peoples and civilization. The second theme, more implicit but equally important, which is expounded more subtly throughout all his works, is the idea of an intimate continuity between the ancient Italics and the modern Italians. Concerning this final fundamental element in the construction of national identity, the 1832 book would display noteworthy and dramatic changes. Italics and Italians, nation and nations, races, and ‘types’ Micali’s prose displays an abundant usage of keywords such as popolo, nazione, nazionale, razza, Italici, Italiani. The last two terms are normally employed by scholars to denote two different concepts: Italici referring to the former pre-Roman indigenous populations of the Peninsula, and Italiani referring to the latter modern Italophone populations tracing back to the height of the Middle Ages. In the case of Micali, however, both terms are largely used as synonyms.56 He tends to imitate the process of semantic overlapping that was widely used, though with blatant ideological and political aims, by Vincenzo Cuoco in his Platone in Italia. The frequent, systematic conflation of these terms, as well as the numerous references to national ‘characters’ or ‘traits,’ was as obvious to early nineteenth-century readers as to modern ones. Furthermore, Micali seems to manifest a certain degree of determinism when he asserts that a given population cannot completely change its very nature across centuries and millennia, or different geographical conditions.57 The idea of this substantial continuity between the ancient and modern populations pervades Micali’s narrative, and the readers’ identification with ancient Italics certainly is one of his books’ main goals. For example, in dealing with the history of his native region— Tuscany—the author freely employs the adjective Toscano (‘Tuscan’), usually denoting the modern inhabitants of Tuscany, to describe the ancient Etruscans. Accordingly, fourth- or even eighth-century BCE Etruscans became the Toscani or the antichi Toscani (‘ancient Tuscans’) and their ethnicity is familiarly labeled as ‘our’ nation.58 The lemma nazione itself, as well as its derivation, reflects a varying spectrum of meaning, ranging from the nation as a group, a single ethnicity or a provenance, to the idea of a common Italian fatherland. Hence, next to a Samnite or an Etruscan ‘nation,’ the reader can observe in the preface of Italia avanti il dominio dei romani a reference to ‘the political condition of the nation before the Romans’ where that ‘nation’ without any doubt refers to Italy.59 The adjective nazionale, instead, can be both interpreted in certain passages as a synonym of ‘native’ or, on the other hand, of the dyad ‘Italic/Italian.’60 In conclusion, it appears indisputable that Micali manages to encourage readers’ self-identification

A plural Italy?  61 with their ‘national’ forefathers, whether these ancestors belonged to the ‘greater’ Italian fatherland or to the ‘smaller’ regional or local one. In this sense, Micali’s style is tailored not only upon the different political or regional allegiances of his readers, but remains influenced by a polysemic use of the idea of nation that characterizes the political vocabulary of the Enlightenment and Revolutionary age.61 On the other hand, when it comes to the term razza, readers notice a gradual, yet dramatic and significant semantic ‘shift’ aiming at adding to the older notions of race as a ‘lineage/stock’ the new phenotypical ones of ‘type/ variety.’ In Italia avanti il dominio dei romani, the lemma race is scarcely used, and is mostly applied to animal breeds, or to indicate the ‘human race’ or, in other words, humankind as a whole.62 When applied to indicate an ethnicity—as in the case of the seafaring Pelasgians—it seems again to aim at denoting a primeval stock, from which ethnicity (like the Greeks) would eventually stem.63 Thus, if the 1810 book seems to maintain an entrenched semantics of the term race as ‘stock/lineage,’ the 1832 Storia degli antichi popoli Italiani displays a spectrum of meanings laden with far-reaching consequences for the identification of an Italian national community. Race is indeed used as a synonym of ‘humankind’ and ‘stock,’ as in the previous monograph, but in this case, it seems more persistently associated with the main ethnicities of the Peninsula. Accordingly, in addition to the aforementioned ‘Pelasgian,’ Micali increasingly refers to an ‘Oscan,’ ‘Sabellic,’ ‘Celtic,’ or, for example, to the (‘foreign’) ‘Illyrian’ ‘races.’64 None of these meanings include any reference to a somatic or phenotypical feature; yet, there seems to be a clear reference to a lineage, and a line of descent, in short, to a clear ‘biological’ (although not phenotypical) connotation of the lemma. It appears evident, however, that in the 1832 monograph, the concept of race is not associated with a generic idea of lineage or stock, but to specific traits which arise from both heredity and environmental conditions. For the first time, Micali’s words leave no doubt regarding the new understanding of the idea of race, which is explicitly associated with particular physical and physiognomic traits reflecting customs, habits, or attitudes. In differentiating the highland Italics from the lowland Italics, the author indulges in this physiognomic digression: It is indeed the singular, if not the peculiar, destiny of this bel paese divided by the Apennines to reunite in such a small space so many customs, dialects, and physiognomies of populations so different from each other. […] The appearance itself of these races look very differentiated: the expressive eyes, the proud and pronounced lineaments of the Calabrian or the Samnite highlander neither resemble the civilized Etruscan nor the tender inhabitant of Campania: and everywhere, if we may add, it is possible to identify the extremely powerful influence both of the physical nature and the civil government.65

62  A plural Italy? When describing the Etruscans, which he previously defined as ‘our nation’ and as ‘people with our blood,’ the notion of ‘race’ conveys something more than simple inheritability of environmental modification, and acquires the status of an indicator of a peculiar, timeless ‘Italian-ness.’66 Etruscan traits eternalized in sculpture and figurative arts, far from being the evidence of a given artistic style or peculiar ideals of beauty, transcend their age, and become the quintessential Italian traits: The physical type, or the head shape which mostly characterizes the Italian race of these people, and [which] neither the political changes nor the action of the civilization process have ever let perish among us, is identifiable in several masculine and feminine portraits carved in the sepulchral monument of the ancient age. These are the real and unaltered lineaments of our fathers. The fact that they are very ancient and illustrious people is confirmed by thousands of testimonies.67 Again, here emerges that rigid determinism that characterizes Micali’s view of the persistence of the innate cultural and moral—but also physical— traits in a given ethnicity. Micali maintains that all the environmental, historical, and societal changes together could not substantially alter some fundamental traits of an Italic/Italian lineage, which are embodied, as he suggests, by a distinctive physical ‘type.’ The skull and therefore the head, as the ‘container’ of both the physical and psycho-cultural traits, seem to particularly draw his attention: Fragment of a beautiful virile head, carved in thin bronze foil and diligently chiseled. […] The huge variety of heads [gathered], their diverse ages, the various hairstyles, the completely national demeanor of faces, as well as the uniformity in facial angles leaves no doubt regarding the fact that these are real portraits: and [they are] the more important in so much as they accurately show us, the physical type of our fathers without any embellishment whatsoever. This [type] is the same of the diverse race of the Caucasus. The vertical diameter is short, and therefore the face is large; the contour of the head, if observed frontally, could be defined as square-shaped, since the cranium looks flattened at its top, and the inferior extremity of the jawbone is horizontal. The forehead is low, and the nose is aquiline with a flat basis [;] the chin [is] rounded vis-à-vis a position of the ears that is rather high. (see table. Xv: 7, 8, 9). These are the principal features of the modern type of Tuscany, and, more broadly, typical of the universal Italian race. See Vol. I. p. 103.68 On the other hand, according to Micali, in contrast with the Tuscan ‘type,’ the statue of Bacchus displays the evident traits of a ‘foreign race’: Thus, the examination of a two-thousand-years-old sculpture enables the Livornese historian to trace a national genealogy evidenced by a ‘completely

A plural Italy?  63

Figure 2.1 Table XV from the attached album to the 1836 edition of the ‘Storia degli Antichi Popoli Italiani.’ Livorno, Biblioteca Labronica Francesco Domenico Guerrazzi.

national’ appearance as well as some traits identical to the ‘modern Tuscan type’ or, more broadly, ‘the universal Italian race.’ An ‘Italian race’ that is the ‘same type’ of the ‘great diverse race of the Caucasus’ is characterized by peculiar cranial and facial proportions. The fact that in these last lines Micali associates the concept of race with specific bodily and facial features should not constitute a novelty. He has previously provided several examples of how physical features determine the belonging to a ‘race,’ whether ‘Italian’ or regional, as in the case of the mountain men of Southern Italy. Nor does is there present a clear explanation of the role of heredity and environment in shaping physical traits, and how (or even if ) they are susceptible to change. On the one hand, he opens the possibility, as we have seen, of the role of environment and society—the ‘civil government’—in shaping traits, while, on the other hand, he argues for substantial immutability of the ‘type.’ Our race of Caucasus Amidst these contradictory statements, one novelty emerges: the concept of ‘type’ along with the adjective ‘Caucasian’ to describe white Europeans within the taxonomy of human species. Years have passed since the first monograph of 1810, in which no evidence was presented for an alleged ‘Italian’ or ‘national’ ‘physical type.’ The term ‘Caucasus’ itself, which would

64  A plural Italy?

Figure 2.2 Table XLI from the attached album to the 1836 edition of the ‘Storia degli Antichi Popoli Italiani.’ Livorno, Biblioteca Labronica Francesco Domenico Guerrazzi. Concerning the figure XLI.5, Micali states: ‘Bronze statue of Bacchus with only two horns, pubescent and beardless: his head is enclosed by a miter, a torque at the neck, and bracelets at the arms: it is clearly noticeable, in this image, the short and flattened face, the prominent cheekbones, and the protruding chin: clear evidence of a foreign race. Most of all, the high position of ears appears very peculiar, as well as the auricular hole at the level of the median of the eyes; [such] a peculiarity is noticeable only in the Egyptian statues. Such a design reveals a very ancient age: the style [reminds that] of those artists, formed under the Egyptian aesthetic canon, were used to depicting divinities.— Museum of the Collegio Romano.’69

have previously recalled nothing more than a mountainous region at the edge of Europe, became laden with specific connotations. It seems that between the early 1810s and 1830s, some Italian intellectuals began to reformulate a national identity according to criteria that differed from those previously accepted, and that drew attention to a progressive ‘phenotypization’ of the nation along the lines of emerging disciplines such as the natural science of man.70 Micali’s work stands as a first tangible testimony in the history of Italian nationalism of the extent to which the new semantics of race were familiar to readers in the 1830s, who evidently required no further clarification. In other words, the lack of any explanatory excursus in dealing with concepts such as ‘physical type’ or ‘Caucasus’ provides a proof of their popularity, rather than confirming their obscurity to an educated public. At this point, it is necessary to divert from Micali’s archaeo-historical investigation of the Italic past to delve into those works which played a major role

A plural Italy?  65 in popularizing the new findings of geography, linguistics, ethnography, and physical anthropology in the debate surrounding the identity of the Italians. A brief overview of the research activity of Adriano Balbi and his anthropography of human societies is therefore imperative.

Adriano Balbi on geography, linguistics, and ‘anthropography’ The fourth section [of this book] covers what we could define as ANTHROPOGRAPHY, that is, the GEOGRAPHY OF MAN. Such section is solely devoted to the study of the human being who is therein analyzed under twelve different aspects: the physical varieties observed in his species.71 The new understanding of the term ‘race,’ as well as the emergence of the adjective ‘Caucasian’ to describe the physical feature of the Italians, represents an absolute novelty in the authors examined. For the first time in a historical work, the idea of a national lineage is expressed through phenotypical and anthropometric criteria: ancient Etruscans and modern Italians are, after all, the embodiment of this ‘universal Italian race.’ Thus, the older notion of ‘race’ as ‘lineage’ associated with a given (national) ‘stock’ is combined with the new connotation of ‘race’ as ‘type’ or ‘variety,’ borrowed from the natural history of man, to reinforce the idea of a substantial continuity in the line of descent through the emphasis on the persistence of certain physical traits.72 To trace, as far as possible, with extreme precision this semantic ‘shift’ in the idea of race from traditional understandings like ‘lineage’ or ‘stock’ to the modern taxonomies of linguistics and the natural history of man is a task that exceeds the scope of this book, which focuses instead on the interplay between the ideas of race and national belonging.73 Undoubtedly, a pivotal figure to consider to understand the dissemination of new understandings of race modeled on the findings of comparative linguistics and the natural science of man in Risorgimento nationalism is the statistician and geographer Adriano Balbi. A leading scholar of the Age of Restoration, Balbi made an astonishing career in France and then in the Austrian Empire, culminating in his position as Imperial Counselor for Geography and Statistics (1840). As an academic and popularizer, Balbi never hid his intolerance for a scholarly and romanticized representation of European countries (and especially Italy) that did not take into account modern developments in statistics, geography, and, of course, linguistics and natural history. His research and didactic activity covers almost four decades of Risorgimento history, and it marks the first broad discussion and systematization of the new findings of geography, statistics, linguistics, and, of course, the natural history of man. In other words, Balbi represented for many intellectuals of the Risorgimento the first ‘window’ into the broader (and more advanced) European scientific and cultural debate, and one of the crucial contributors to the shaping of a ‘national’ statistics and geography.74

66  A plural Italy? However, the Venetian Balbi, despite his crucial contributions, cannot be considered among the ‘patriotic’ scholars who would eventually dominate the ethno-anthropological debate of the age. As Sandra Puccini has noted, Balbi represented in this sense not only a notable exception for his international career in the service of the Habsburg monarchy, but most of all for his apparent lack of commitment to the Risorgimento.75 It is extremely difficult to find in his works even an implicit desire for the unification of the Peninsula. The tones of his acknowledgments to the authorities of Austria and Russia leave few doubts about his allegiance, or at least formal deference, to the Restoration order.76 However, despite his apparent neutrality toward the ‘patriotic’ alignment, Balbi cooperated with other scholars and intellectuals who would fully commit themselves to the Risorgimento cause and for the creation of an ‘Italian’ science. For example, Balbi attended the well-known Riunioni degli scienziati italiani (‘Congresses of the Italian scientists’), and was among the organizers and contributors of the Annuario Geografico Italiano and the Ufficio di Corrispondenza Geografica, as well as the author of geographical, statistical, and ethnographic inquiries on Italy and the Italians.77 In short, even if the personal path of Balbi seems to completely diverge from that of Giandomenico Romagnosi, Carlo Cattaneo, and, also, Bernardino Biondelli, Francesco Marmocchi, Giovenale Vegezzi-Ruscalla, and many other ‘patriotic’ polymaths and geographers, his contribution to the creation of a ‘national’ scholarship appears indisputable. In this sense, as Puccini seems to suggest, Balbi must likely be considered the first ‘modern’ Italian anthropologist.78 Given the relevance of Balbi in nineteenth-century Italy, it comes therefore as a surprise that Micali does not seem to mention his name, especially in the 1832 monograph—the Storia degli antichi popoli italiani—where other scholars are cited and discussed. Due to the limit of this research, we can only raise some hypotheses about this absence, which might range, from simple oversight to an unawareness of the works of the Venetian geographer. It is probable that Micali judged Balbi’s research as completely irrelevant to the structure of his argument. In effect, Micali’s research on the Italic antiquities follows a clear archaeological and antiquarian layout, where archaeological and historical evidence prevails over comparative linguistics and physical anthropology. After all, as we have seen, Micali seems to employ racial typology only as a corollary to his reasoning to reinforce the thesis of an unaltered national lineage tracing back to the Etruscans, while the bulk of his analysis is devoted to the cultural legacy of pre-Roman Italy. Balbi’s works, on the other hand, contain only a few scattered references to the past civilization to produce the most exhaustive mapping of the physical and ‘human’ geography of the coeval Peninsula. The approach of the geographer and statistician aiming at providing data of the current state of Italy could not differ more from the approach of the historian who intended to reconstruct the past of the Peninsula, as it took place more than two millennia earlier. Lastly, one might also hypothesize that the dearth

A plural Italy?  67 of any explanatory reference to Balbi (along with other more well-known geographers or naturalists) concerning terms such as ‘Caucasian’ stands as further proof of the diffusion of the taxonomies of the natural history of man. Micali may have not felt the need to explain something that his readership could have fully grasped without significant elucidation. In conclusion, the direct knowledge of Balbi’s works by Micali remains an unresolved question, although we know, for example, that Micali cites Conrad MalteBrun’s Precìs de Geographie (1810–1829), which was extensively quoted and discussed by Balbi.79 Against this backdrop, we must, however, briefly review Balbi’s main works for their crucial contribution to the dissemination of modern linguistic and racialist thought in Italy, in the timespan roughly between the first and the second of Micali’s treatises on Italic antiquities (1810–1832 ca.). ‘Anthropography,’ or the ‘geography of man’ As early as 1817, the Compendio di geografia universale (‘Compendium of Universal Geography’) demonstrates the themes that would dominate Balbi’s lifelong research and would be more fully articulated in his following works, such as the Atlas Ethnographique Du Globe (1826), the Balance Politique du Globe (1828, transl. it. Bilancia politica del globo, 1833), the Abrégé de Géographie (1833), and the Miscellanea Italiana. Ragionamenti di Geografia e Statistica patria (‘Italian Miscellany. Treatise on National Geography and Statistics’) edited by his son, Eugenio Balbi, in 1845. Such themes include the new racial taxonomies, the role of language in defining ethnicities, and factors that could contribute to define a nation from a political, geographical, and ethno-anthropological perspective. It is noteworthy that Balbi would also suggest new methodologies for assessing the level of development of the different human groups, by criticizing, for example, the dichotomy between ‘civilized’ and ‘savage’ peoples adopted by many of his colleagues.80 As far as we know, Balbi’s Compendio of 1817 also marks the coinage of the term antropografia (lit. ‘anthropography’), a neologism intended to describe a ‘geography of man’ and ‘of physical varieties observed in his species’ aiming at classifying and assessing the developmental level of human societies. Among the twelve criteria adopted—such as diet, level of civilization, economy, religion, and language—race, of course, stands out.81 As for the latter term, the usage would remain quite polysemic throughout his works, since Balbi would also intend by ‘race’ concepts like ‘nation,’ ‘lineage,’ and ‘stock.’82 However, the understanding suggested by the natural science of man would become predominant, and Balbi would try to avoid any misunderstanding by clarifying what the term race meant within a specific context. For example, when he associates the concept of race with the concept of ‘variety’ borrowed from eighteenth-century naturalists, he leaves no doubt that he is referring to the classification of human beings based on phenotypical and anthropometric criteria.83

68  A plural Italy? Balbi, in effect, bases his ‘human geography’ on the taxonomies produced by naturalists such as Johann Friedrich Blumenbach, Conrad Malte-Brun, and Georges Cuvier, whom he cites and discusses extensively. Thus, when he employs the term ‘Caucasian,’ we could easily infer that he not only aims at describing the white European phenotype, but that he was also fully conversant with the coinage of Blumenbach.84 The adoption of this terminology reveals, in addition to his manifest criticism of polygenism, the defense of a monogenist theory when it comes to explaining the origins of humankind and its subsequent evolution in multiple ‘varieties.’ While polygenist authors associated the term ‘race’ with the concept of ‘species’ (suggesting, in other words, that ‘Caucasians,’ ‘Negroes,’ or ‘Yellows’ did not belong to the same Homo Sapiens, but were rather, different, biological ‘species’ of men), Balbi defines the ‘variety’ as a sub-group of the ‘human species’ within a taxonomic rank articulated in genus > species > variety/race, which leaves no doubt regarding his idea of a substantial unity of humankind.85 On the division of the human species into different physical ‘varieties,’ Balbi expresses, however, a circumspect attitude. Balbi adopts and defends the theoretical possibility of classifying human beings according to their distinct ‘varieties.’ Along the lines of the naturalists cited in his works, ‘race/variety’ is therefore considered a valid heuristic tool to illustrate the intersection between the environment and human beings. This relation between the earth and the different human varieties is illustrated through a narrative that reflects an epistemological procedure tracing back to the Enlightenment and aiming at structuring the world of phenomena from the simple to the complex.86 For example, the Atlas Ethnographique of 1826 is organized into three main parts, respectively, devoted to the geography of the Earth, its botanical and zoological realms, and finally the human species and its phenotypical and anthropometric subdivisions.87 Notwithstanding this acknowledgment of the value of the natural science of man, Balbi repeatedly cautions against a methodology of subdivision based on varieties that seems to increasingly lead to a burgeoning and never-ending diversification of different ‘varieties.’ As he points out, racial classifications, which originally ranged from three to five ‘varieties,’ have developed into taxonomical ladders envisaging eleven to fifteen types of human ‘varieties,’ or more.88 Accordingly, Balbi, though not completely ruling out the concept of human varieties (and therefore of ‘races’ identified through naturalistic criteria), clearly states that ‘classification based on physical differences, or, in other words, that based on the variety of human species, is still extremely flawed, in spite of the knowledgeable studies devoted to that matter.’89 Such an affirmation (which, as we have said, must not be read as an overall refutation of the natural history of man) may serve as an introduction to those criteria—above all, language—which Balbi deems more reliable and accurate in order to arrive at an exhaustive classification of human groups.

A plural Italy?  69 ‘Linguistics’ or ‘ethnography’ It is indisputable that Balbi privileges linguistics—and, in particular the emerging field of comparative linguistics—as the main heuristic tool to be used by geographers, statisticians, and, most of all, ethnographers. Balbi even states in his famous Atlas Ethnographique that linguistics and ethnography are essentially the same discipline.90 It is, in effect, through the examination of the language currently spoken in the world that the scholar can ‘trace back’—as he affirms—‘to the origins of the nations.’91 In this passage, Balbi emphasizes how the ethno-linguistic approach may not only help in reconstructing the ‘origins of nations’ in the absence of reliable written evidence, but, more broadly, in guiding the other disciplines: If it has been rightly said that geography and chronology are the two eyes of history, it seems to us that ethnography is for both of them [geography and chronology] what chronology is for history. Without any certain division between dates and ages, everything in the latter [history] is confused; without any certain distinction between peoples, history and geography become real chaos, a labyrinth, where the most superior spirits, the most knowledgeable persons, get lost.92 Language is, according to Balbi, one of the most persistent characteristics of an ethnicity, for it rarely changes radically its semantic and morphological structures.93 Thus, as he observes in an overview of the Turkic and Caucasian populations, a lineage or a race/variety cannot be considered as the only valid criterion for ethnic identification, for they could differ immensely even within the same linguistic group.94 Balbi emphasizes how nationalities could form as a result of a mélanges des races and that language could reflect the various contributions to the shaping of a modern ethnic group.95 In this sense, without mentioning the concept of the linguistic substratum (which would eventually be broadly discussed by authors like Cattaneo and Graziadio Isaia Ascoli), he alludes to such a phenomenon when he states that accents and pronunciations are worthy of a further investigation to reconstruct the life of nations.96 Balbi appears well-versed in the new emerging analytical paradigm and linguistic studies, and his book displays several ‘ethnographic’ tables of the world and European populations organized according to the new findings of comparative linguistics. He cites and explains the theories of authors such as Franz Bopp, Rasmus Rask, and Friedrich Schlegel, who enabled scholars to avoid the ‘fortuitous analogies’ and the ‘useless erudition of the last three centuries.’97 Accordingly, Europe and the Mediterranean Basin are therefore illustrated as a great area of diffusion of two greater linguistic ‘families’—identifiable with the Indo-European and Semitic—with a few ‘pockets’ still inhabited by other groups, or previous autochthonous populations.98 Curiously, while Balbi does not seem to object to the usage of

70  A plural Italy? the term ‘Semitic’ to describe those languages such as Arabic and Hebrew, the en vogue definition of ‘Indo-Germanic’ is labeled in the original French text as prétendue (‘alleged’).99 Here, however, Balbi’s primary criticism of the idea of an Indo-Germanic linguistic ‘family’ does not imply a rejection of comparative linguistics, nor an exclusion of the Germanic languages from the greater Indo-European group. Rather, the adjective prétendue seems to be referred to that suffix—Germanic—which conveys the idea of a German/ Germanic cultural and linguistic primacy vis-à-vis the rest of the Europeans, and which sounded particularly unpleasant to non-German-speaking scholars for its evident jingoist connotations. Notwithstanding these evident criticisms of the usage of the term ‘IndoGermanic,’ Balbi’s ethnographical maps of Italy are based on the evolving findings and principles of what would be later defined as Indo-European studies. Italians are defined through a curious (but not yet completely surprising, at least for us, terminology) as members of the ‘Thraco-Pelasgian’ or ‘Greco-Latin’ ‘family,’ and the parts devoted to the Peninsula display a substantial homogeneity of a population of neo-Latin speakers, divided into smaller linguistic sub-groups of the main language: the dialects.100 The only relevant exception to this rather uniform pattern is represented, according to the author, by the linguistic minorities such as Germans, French, Slovenians, Catalans, Greeks, and so on, and, at least from the standpoint of the liturgical language, the Jews.101 All these groups—whether ethnic Italian or linguistic minorities—are defined in the original French text of Balbi’s Abrégé as belonging to a particular souche: the Italians are shown as deriving from the ‘Greco-Latin’ souche, while the German-speaking communities of the Alps and the Jews are, respectively, defined as of souche Germanique and souche Semitique.102 Now, the usage of the lemma souche by Balbi, especially in illustrating the linguistic groups, raises several interpretive questions for the extreme polysemic nature of this term. Souche may indicate, in fact, in French a wide array of concepts, ranging from ‘stump,’ ‘strain,’ ‘stub,’ to ‘stock,’ and lastly, ‘linguistic family.’103 One might rightfully hypothesize that such a usage of the term may be essentially metaphorical. Balbi, by using it, did not want to convey the idea of any sort of conflation between the language and the biological descent of population, but, rather, used terms such as souche or famillie (‘family’) to indicate human groups bound by a linguistic rather than a physical derivation. The same can be argued of the similar terms employed in the Italian text of the coeval Bilancia politica del Globo: among them stands out, for example, stipite o famiglia etnografica (‘stock or ethnographic family’) consisting of lingue sorelle (‘sister languages’) who have a ‘common origin’ which can also be identified through the reconstruction of the ‘migrations of the peoples who speak these languages.’104 Undoubtedly, one might be tempted to employ terms recalling an idea of kinship or a biological connection to illustrate the structuring of linguistic groups and the related derivation and—indeed—‘filiation’ of languages.

A plural Italy?  71 Balbi’s reliance on metaphors can also be justified by the need to explain such a complex process to the broader non-specialist public.105 I would suggest, however, that the systematic recurrence of these terms illustrates the extent to which linguistic and ethnic works fall into the discursive ‘trap’ of the concepts and tropes surrounding national identity which characterizes nineteenth-century European nationalism. Accordingly, even an author who manifestly denies any conflation between lineage and language, as Adriano Balbi does, unwittingly disclose the tensions and contradictions noted by Silvana Patriarca. In this, case, the tensions might have resulted from the stratification of older understanding of genealogies with the scholarly attempts to illustrate a cohesive theory for the origin of the nationalities. ‘What is a nation?’ History, language, and ‘natural’ boundaries at work Yet, despite these tensions, language (rather than lineage and race) seems to play, for Balbi, the essential role in defining the ethnicities of Europe, and, of course, the Italians. Such a pattern is, however, further complicated by the discriminating eye of the Venetian geographer when it comes to defining the idea of nation. In the Atlas Ethnographique, the question ‘what is a nation?’ is addressed via three different criteria, which reflect the three different meanings of the term.106 These criteria, as Balbi points out, are the historicalpolitical, geographical, and, of course, the ethnographical-linguistic. Under the first category fall all those populations that are subjected to the same polity. From this perspective, as the author underlines, linguistic, religious, and even developmental differences may not constitute a significant distinguishing factor. Such a condition is embodied, for example, by the Austrian Empire, as well as by all the established powers governing significant minorities. A nation can be, however, defined by geography, as the second definition suggests. In this case, the term ‘nation’ can be used to define a population living within a specific geographical area clearly delimited by ‘natural’ boundaries and ‘independently’ from any sort of political frontier: this situation is evident, for example, in the Indian and Italian cases where great orographic systems and seas separate the Indians and the Italians from the surrounding populations.107 The third ‘ethnographic’ definition of nation indicates, of course, those populations sharing the same languages and dialects, regardless of their geographical continuity and the political powers to which they are subjected, and again seems particularly suitable for patriotic movements aiming at achieving independence and nationhood. In short, it appears evident that Balbi offers three criteria to define a nation (and nationhood), and which may be adapted to legitimize existing political entities such as the Austrian Empire, but also hypothetical and ‘seditious’ statehoods, such as, of course, Italy. The reference not only to an ethnographic criterion, but, most of all, to an area delimited by ‘natural boundaries’ in spite of the established political frontiers reinforces the idea

72  A plural Italy? of a profound kinship between the ethnicities and their respective environments (an idea clearly expressed by the concept of ‘anthropography’ and later approached, although without mentioning that particular neologism, by Carlo Cattaneo).108 Both geography and ethnography would eventually play a crucial role in reifying such a notion of ‘natural border’ and in presenting it as a natural and ‘positive’ fact.109 In effect, as Sturani and Patriarca underline, geography and statistics constituted a powerful instrument for the advocates of Italian nationhood: while historiography, and, most of all, fiction, could be easily dismissed as opinions or deceiving representations, the naked numbers and data provided by geographical and statistical investigations appeared as ‘neutral’ ‘objective,’ and thus, a more persuasive tool.110 Balbi, along with other geographers, pointed out the role of orographic systems as real ‘watersheds’ of humanity, separating ethnicities more effectively than rivers, lakes, and seas (which are on the contrary regarded, with all the due exceptions, as proper catalysts of human connections and migrations). This idea of a natural frontier as a reliable criterion for nationhood would play a paramount role in both the European identity, and, of course, Italian nationalism.111 Needless to say, both the ‘ethnographical’ and the ‘geographical’ conceptions of nation would reinforce the idea of a homogeneous Italian ethnic community clearly separated by its natural boundaries from the rest of the European nations, and present the claims of Italian nationalism as a mere reinstatement of a natural precondition. Thus, even if Balbi never openly expressed his support for Italian nationalism, the emphasis in his works on the ‘natural’ foundations for nation/nationhood constitutes a further stimulus to delve into the natural history (or, more accurately, the prehistory) of the Italian nation with new analytical tools provided by the evolving comparative linguistics and the natural history of man. In conclusion, although we are in a pioneering phase of reconstructing how the modern naturalist notion of race propagated in modern Italy—and, in particular, in Italian nationalism—it seems that Adriano Balbi was among the first (if not the first) in systematizing geographical and statistical works on Italy in which the concepts of race and language were regarded as fundamental elements for the identification of the Italian nationality/ethnicity. As some of the works cited and examined have shown, the politically ‘neutral’ Venetian geographer played a central role in the formation of ‘national’ statistics and geography, and some of the concepts that he employed—such as incivilimento—would be broadly discussed and developed, as we will see in the following chapters, by key figures of the Risorgimento’s intelligentsia in assessing the identity and the development of Italy.112 Most of all, Balbi adopts an approach that can be regarded as anthropological for its examination of a given human group from the standpoint of culture, language, history, as well as geography and natural sciences.113 In short, Balbi seems to approach the shaping of ethnicity as a process deeply affected by the interplay of several factors, and, most of all, by the convergence and encounter

A plural Italy?  73 of those ‘mélanges of races’ and populations that posed a substantial threat to the idea of a monolithic, unilinear development of a ‘pure’ Italian nationality. Such an approach, such an idea of the nation as a ‘plural,’ entity as well as the formation of ethnicity as a ‘cosmopolitan’ process, would be further discussed and developed by Giandomenico Romagnosi, and, most of all, by his pupil Carlo Cattaneo.

Conclusions By the early 1830s, the vocabulary of race in Italy seemed to undergo a further transformation by including, among the older understandings, the ‘modern’ idea of race, based on the taxonomies of naturalistic racialism. The work of Adriano Balbi can be considered of paramount importance for its voluminous research and systematization of the different physical and cultural differences observable in human beings. Not by coincidence, Balbi has been credited with paving the way to the development of the ethnographic and anthropological disciplines in the Peninsula. In particular, his ‘reduction’—if we can call it thus—of the main identifiers of a given ethnicity to the elements of race, and, most of all, of language would prove extremely lasting and influential. Not all authors, however, would accept his invitation to separate race from language, or to consider modern nations as the result of ‘mixing’ of ‘races,’ rather than ‘pure’ lineages. Catholic Romantic authors, in particular, seemed to consider linguistic groups as effective ‘biological’ races and would adopt an ambivalent approach to the new comparative linguistics popularized by the Venetian geographer. Others, like Romagnosi and Cattaneo, would insist on the different phylogenetic paths of linguistic and physical ‘derivations,’ and consider the ethnogeneses as the result of multiple cultural and civilizational encounters. In comparison with the mixed reception met by Balbi’s studies on linguistics, it can be said that Micali’s influence in Risorgimento culture was much more pervasive and uncontested. Part of this fortune may be ascribed to his traditional historiographical and archaeological approach, in line with the eighteenth-century studies of Italic antiquities. His focus on the ethnic plurality, rather than the unity of Italy as the result of multiple ‘stocks’ dating back to the pre-Roman age would be shared by many authors, even those who would not fully agree with his negative portrayal of Romanization process, nor with his hasty dismissal of the Pelasgians as the mythical forefathers of the Italians. Micali’s reference to the Etruscans as the quintessentially ‘Italian’ civilization would, in a certain sense, overshadow Cuoco’s well-known ‘Etruscomania,’ primarily because of the recognized historical soundness of his works. Risorgimento intellectuals discussed his findings and theses on the Etruscan civilization, and his typological rendering of the Etruscan features as the quintessential ‘national’ traits would be shared and developed by notable authors such as Cesare Balbo. As we will see in Chapter 5, in his analysis of Italic antiquities, Balbo pointed out

74  A plural Italy? the persistence, across millennia, of an ‘Italian type’ from the Etruscans to Dante. Such a typological reference, in particular, to a fil-rouge binding this ancient ethnicity to modern Tuscany as the ‘core’ of Italian nationality would even outlast the first half of the century, to be fully developed by the first generation of Italian anthropologists of the 1850s and 1860s. In short, it is evident that by the early 1830s, Italian scholars and intellectuals demonstrated a keen interest in the ‘physical’ race (interpreted as the ultimate proof of ‘Italianness’) that would characterize the historical and ethno-anthropological works in the decades to come. Such an interest in the physical and physiological dimension of national identity—long erroneously traced to the advent of Positivism in the late 1860s—would outlive the age of nation-building to be further developed (and exacerbated) by late nineteenth- and early twentieth-century scientific racism.

Notes 1 Vincenzo Cuoco, “L’Italia avanti il dominio dei Romani, volumi 4 in 8.vo con un volume in-foglio di figure. Firenze, presso Piatti, 1810,” Monitore delle Due Sicilie, no. 93, May, 20, 1811, repr. Cuoco, Scritti giornalistici. 1801–1815, vol. 2, Periodo napoletano, eds. Domenico Conte and Maurizio Martirano. (Naples: Fridericiana Editrice Universitaria, 1999), 363–366. I quoted Antonino De Francesco’s translation: see Antonino De Francesco, The Antiquity of the Italian Nation: The Cultural Origins of the Political Myth in Modern Italy, 1796– 1943 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013), 52. 2 De Francesco, The Antiquity of the Italian Nation, 52–53. 3 Giuseppe Micali, L’Italia avanti il dominio dei romani (Florence: Piatti, 1810), 1: 31–32. 4 De Francesco, The Antiquity of the Italian Nation, 54; see also Arrigo Colombini, Giuseppe Micali: uno storico toscano contro il mito classicista (Livorno: Editrice l’Informazione, 1998), 150–151. 5 Piero Treves, Lo studio dell’antichità classica nell’Ottocento, vol. 2 (Turin: Einaudi, 1976), 304–306; De Francesco, The Antiquity of the Italian Nation, 72–75. 6 Strangely, the majority of the authors examined seem not to mention the presence of an album in the attachment to 1832 book displaying a wide array of Etruscan and Italic archaeological evidence, ranging from ruins to figurative arts. According to Massimo Pallottino, the 1832 Storia degli antichi popoli italiani was nothing but an update of 1810 previous work, with no significant change both in content and methodology. See De Francesco, The Antiquity of the Italian Nation, 76. 7 Sebastiano Timpanaro, Sulla linguistica dell’Ottocento (Bologna: Il Mulino, 2005), 239–240. 8 Micali, L’Italia avanti il dominio dei romani, 1: 14, 24. 9 Micali, ibid., 63–67. 10 Micali, ibid., 1–6. 11 Micali, ibid., 1: 19. 12 Micali, ibid., 24 (emphasis added). 13 On the classical topos of the ‘lying Greece’—the Græcia Mendax—see Paolo Casini, L’antica sapienza italica. Cronistoria di un mito (Bologna: Il Mulino, 1998), 263. 14 Micali, L’Italia avanti il dominio dei romani, 1: 25–26. 15 Micali, ibid., 2: 230–236.

A plural Italy?  75 16 Giuseppe Micali, Storia degli antichi popoli italiani (Florence: Tipografia all’Insegna di Dante, 1832), 1: ix–x; Achille Coen, Giuseppe Micali e la storia primitiva dell’Italia (Livorno: Vigo, 1878), 25–26; De Francesco, The Antiquity of the Italian Nation, 77–78. 17 Carlo Mangio, I patrioti toscani fra ‘Repubblica Etrusca’ e Restaurazione (Florence: Olshki, 1991), 82; Colombini, Giuseppe Micali, 41; De Francesco, The Antiquity of the Italian Nation, 58–59. 18 Coen, Giuseppe Micali e la storia primitiva d’Italia, 16; Treves, Lo studio dell’antichità classica nell’Ottocento, 296–298; Mangio, ibid., 81; Colombini, ibid., 36– 37, De Francesco, ibid., 58. 19 Carlo Mangio, ibid., 82, 417; Colombini, ibid., 38; De Francesco, ibid., 58–61. 20 Treves, Lo studio dell’antichità classica nell’Ottocento, 304–305; Colombini, ibid., 64. 21 Treves, ibid., 304–306. 22 De Francesco, The Antiquity of the Italian Nation, 61. 23 De Francesco, ibid., 62–63. 24 Treves, Lo studio dell’antichità classica nell’Ottocento, 306; De Francesco, ibid., 62–63. 25 Benedetto Croce argued, for example, that unlike Cuoco—who wrote about antiquities within the Platone without any cautiousness—Micali proceeded with all due consideration of the professional erudite. See Benedetto Croce, Storia della storiografia italiana nel secolo decimonono (Bari, Laterza 1921), 1: 114–115, 128. See, also, De Francesco, The Antiquity of the Italian Nation, 55, 61. 26 Casini, L’antica sapienza italica, 262–264; De Francesco, The Antiquity of the Italian Nation, 64–65. As for the critiques to Micali’s work, mainly by Inghirami, Lanzi, and Niebuhr, see Coen, Giuseppe Micali e la storia primitiva d’Italia, 20; Treves, Lo studio dell’antichità classica nell’Ottocento, 303–304; De Francesco, The Antiquity of the Italian Nation, 70–73. For the subsequent re-publications of the Italia avanti il dominio dei romani see De Francesco, ibid., 67. 27 Micali, L’Italia avanti il dominio dei romani, 1: preface and 31–32; see, also Micali, Storia degli antichi popoli italiani, 1: v–xiii. 28 Micali, Storia degli antichi popoli italiani, 2: 223–224. 29 See the second edition of the first monograph on pre-Roman Italy: Giuseppe Micali, L’Italia avanti il dominio dei romani (Florence: Pagani, 1821), 1: 120. 30 Micali, L’Italia avanti il dominio dei romani, 1: 133; Micali, Storia degli antichi popoli italiani, 2: 131–133. 31 De Francesco, The Antiquity of the Italian Nation, 72–75. 32 De Francesco, ibid., 73. 33 De Francesco, ibid., 80–81. 34 Treves argues that Mazzini was never anti-Etruscan but, rather, that he despised the Etruscomania or other forms of excessive interest and glorification of pre-Roman regional populations. As for Mazzini’s interpretation of Micali, Treves maintains that Mazzini read the Livornese author, but decided not to mention him. See Piero Treves, Ottocento italiano fra il nuovo e l’antico (Modena: Mucchi, 1992), 1: 107–110. 35 Giuseppe Mazzini, Dell’Unità Italiana. Appendice (1861), rpt. in Mazzini, Scritti Editi ed Inediti, Edizione Nazionale, vol. 3 (Imola: Cooperativa Tipografico Editrice Paolo Galeati, 1907), 312. 36 De Francesco, The Antiquity of the Italian Nation, 82. 37 Micali, L’Italia avanti il dominio dei romani, 1: 1. It must be noted that in describing the pre-Roman indigenous inhabitants of the Peninsula, Micali resorts to the term italo (pl. itali), that in the literary and poetic language means both italiano (‘Italian’) and italico (‘Italic’). This usage undoubtedly reinforces the idea of a profound ethnic and cultural continuity between the modern Italian

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38 39

40 41 42 43 44

45

46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 54 55

56

57 58

and their ancient progenitors. As for the lemma italo and its usage, cf. “italo” Treccani. Vocabolario online, last accessed July 15, 2020 http://www.treccani.it/ vocabolario/italo_res-6d749b36–0022-11de-9d89–0016357eee51/. Micali, ibid., 13–14. Micali, L’Italia avanti il dominio dei romani, 2: 77–78n. See also, Micali, L’Italia avanti il dominio dei romani, 2nd ed. (Florence: Pagani, 1821), 2: 92n. As for the absence of any reference to Franz Bopp and his works, see Coen, Giuseppe Micali e la storia primitiva d’Italia, 30; Colombini, Giuseppe Micali, 93. Arrigo Colombini, for his part, argues that some of Micali’s diffidence toward the nascent Indo-European linguistics owes to an ill-concealed bias against the ‘East.’ Yet, Colombini fails to report the exact passages from Micali’s works suggesting such a hypothesis. See Colombini, ibid., 92. Micali, L’Italia avanti il dominio dei romani, 2: 2. Carlo Cattaneo, “Tipi del genere umano,” Politecnico 14, no. 75 (September 1862): 336–357. Coen, Giuseppe Micali e la storia primitiva d’Italia, 21–22. Micali, L’Italia avanti il dominio dei romani, 1: 36; Coen, Giuseppe Micali e la storia primitiva d’Italia, 23–24. Micali, L’Italia avanti il dominio dei romani, 1: 102–105. On the linguistic differences of the Etruscans with the Greeks, and the Etruscan language as being widely spoken and alive at the time of Dionysius, see Micali, Storia degli antichi popoli italiani, 1: 350. Micali, ibid., 1: 115–116. Micali argues that, contrary to Niebuhr’s thesis, the Etruscan themselves, and, in particular, one of their leaders guiding them away from the invading Celts—Reto—gave name to that stretch of Alps that the Danish historian erroneously thought to be the initial homeland of the Etruscans. See Micali, L’Italia avanti il dominio dei romani, 2: 38–57. Micali, Storia degli antichi popoli italiani, 2: 350–351. Micali, ibid., 1: 140. Micali, ibid., 1: 14–15, 51–52, 140–143. Micali, L’Italia avanti il dominio dei romani, 1: 244; see. also Micali, Storia degli antichi popoli italiani, 1: 366. Micali, L’Italia avanti il dominio dei romani, 1: 244–245; see also Micali, Storia degli antichi popoli italiani, 1: 366–367. Micali, L’Italia avanti il dominio dei romani, 2nd ed. (Firenze: Pagani, 1821), 3: 56. Micali, ibid., 3: 48; De Francesco, The Antiquity of the Italian Nation, 65. Micali, Storia degli antichi popoli italiani, 1: ix. Micali, ibid., 2: 350–352. Giuseppe Micali, Monumenti inediti a illustrazione della storia degli antichi popoli italiani (Firenze: Galileana, 1844), 3–5. Given the polysemy of the word monumento in nineteenth-century literary Italian, the title of this work can be translated into English as ‘Unpublished Historical and Archaeological Evidence to Illustrate the “History of the Ancient Italian Peoples”.’ As for the word monumento and its meanings, see Treccani. Vocabolario online, last accessed February 28, 2019, http://www.treccani.it/vocabolario/monumento/. It is impossible to cite here all the times in which the lemma ‘Italian’ is employed to describe the ancient Italic populations. See, for example, among others, Micali, L’Italia avanti il dominio dei romani, 1: 19; Micali, Storia degli antichi popoli italiani, 1: 19, 59, 170. Micali, L’Italia avanti il dominio dei romani, 1: 244; Micali, Storia degli antichi popoli italiani, 1: 366. Micali, L’Italia avanti il dominio dei romani, 1: 33, 106; Micali, L’Italia avanti il dominio dei romani. 2nd edition, 1: 119–120.

A plural Italy?  77 59 Micali, preface to L’Italia avanti il dominio dei romani, vol. 1; Micali, preface to L’Italia avanti il dominio dei romani. 2nd edition, vol. 1. 60 Micali, L’Italia avanti il dominio dei romani, 1: 244; Micali, Storia degli antichi popoli italiani, 1: 366. 61 On the persistence of regional identities in Italian nineteenth-century nationalism, see Luca Mannori, “Tra nazioni e nazione,” in Nazioni d’Italia: identità politiche e appartenenze regionali fra Settecento e Ottocento, eds. Angela De Benedictis, Irene Fosi, and Luca Mannori (Rome: Viella, 2012), 6–31. 62 Micali, L’Italia avanti il dominio dei romani, 1: 66; Micali, L’Italia avanti il dominio dei romani. 2nd edition (1821), 1: 110. 63 Micali, L’Italia avanti il dominio dei romani, 1: 64. 64 Micali, Storia degli antichi popoli italiani, 2: 356. 65 Micali, ibid., 224–225. 66 Micali, Storia degli antichi popoli italiani, 1: 124–125. 67 Micali, ibid., 1: 103 (emphasis added). 68 Micali, Storia degli antichi popoli italiani, 3: 10–12 (emphasis added). 69 Micali, ibid., 3: 64 (emphasis added). 70 On the origins of the term Caucasian, see Mosse, Towards the Final Solution: A History of European Racism (New York: Fertig, 1978), 44; George M. Fredrickson, Racism: A Short History (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2002), 47–96; Nell Irvin Painter, The History of White People (New York: W.W. Norton, 2011), 160–171; Michael Banton, Racial Theories (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2009), 22; Francisco Bethencourt, Racisms: From the Crusades to the Twentieth Century (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2013), 262–264. For an in-depth analysis of the intellectual and scientific phylogenesis of the idea of a Caucasian white ethnogenesis in eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century Europe, see Hannah F. Augstein, “From the land of the Bible to the Caucasus and beyond,” in Race, Science and Medicine, 1700–1960, eds. Waltraud Ernst and Bernard Harris (London: Routledge, 1999), 58–79. As we will see in the next paragraph, it appears quite curious that Micali does not seem to explain to his readers such a semantic shift of the lemma race from its original meaning of lineage to the modern notion of type. Even more surprisingly is the fact that he cites the Prècis de Geographie by Franco-Danish geographer Conrad Malte-Brun, not in relation to any naturalistic taxonomy of race, but, rather, to the language and sacerdotal castes of the Etruscans. See Micali, Storia degli antichi popoli italiani, 2: 76. 71 Adriano Balbi, Compendio di geografia universale conforme alle ultime politiche transazioni e più recenti scoperte. Corredato di cinque tavole sistematiche delle principali lingue, e di altrettante Dissertazioni sulla popolazione attuale delle cinque Parti del Mondo di Adriano Balbi N.V. Già Professore di Fisica del Liceo del Tronto e Membro onorario dell’Ateneo Veneto (Venice: presso Giacomo Fuchs in Canonica di S. Marco: Dai torchi di Giuseppe Molinari, 1817), 398 (emphasis added). 72 On the implications of the usage race as ‘lineage’ and race as ‘type’ or ‘variety’ and their tensions, see Michael Banton, Racial Theories, 17–88. On the gradual supersession of the traditional concepts of race by the new terminology of the natural history of man, see Richard McMahon, The Races of Europe: Construction of the National Identities in Social Sciences, 1839–1939 (London: Palgrave McMillan, 2016), 4–20, 25–27. 73 See the Introduction of this book at pages 1–19. 74 For biographical information about Balbi, see Treccani. Dizionario Biografico, “Balbi, Adriano,” ed. Mario Gliozzi, last accessed March 6, 2019, http://www. treccani.it/enciclopedia/adriano-balbi_(Dizionario-Biografico)/. As for Balbi’s call for the modernization of discipline and the improvement of qualitative and

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78 79 80 81 82 83 84 85

86 87 88 89

90 91 92

quantitative analyses, see Silvana Patriarca, Numbers and Nationhood: Writing Statistics in Nineteenth Century Italy (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996), 50–51, 122–130. Sandra Puccini, “Balbi, Romagnosi e Cattaneo. Sulla nascita dell’antropologia italiana del secondo Ottocento,” La Ricerca Folklorica 24 (Nov. 1991): 121. See, for example, the dedication and preface to the Compendio; see Balbi, Compendio di geografia universale, v: ‘At a time when all venerable Monarchs who are overseeing the great European Confederation are reordering altogether the political equilibrium—which has been completely destroyed for twenty years— the geographer is glad to offer to the lover of his matter a study on Earth […].’ Moreover, the Atlas Ethnographique (1826) was posthumously dedicated to the Czar Alexander I of Russia. See Adriano Balbi, Introduction a l’Atlas Ethnographique du Globe (A Paris: chez Rey et Gravier, Libraires, 1826). On the Congresses of the Italian scientists see Giuliano Pancaldi and Umberto Bottazzini, eds., I congressi degli scienziati italiani nell’età del Positivismo (Bologna: CLUEB, 1983); Maria Pia Casalena, Per lo Stato, per la nazione: i congressi degli scienziati in Francia e in Italia (1830–1914) (Rome: Carocci, 2007); Federico Ferretti, “Corrispondenze geografiche: Annibale Ranuzzi fra ‘Geografia Pura’ e Risorgimento (1831–1866),” Rivista geografica italiana 118, no. 1 (2011): 122. Puccini, “Balbi, Romagnosi e Cattaneo,” 121–122. As noted before, Micali cited the Precìs de la Geographie Universelle by MalteBrun only concerning the language and sacerdotal castes of the Etruscans. See Micali, Storia degli antichi popoli italiani, 2: 76. Puccini, “Balbi, Romagnosi e Cattaneo,” 122; Adriano Balbi, Abrégé de Géographie rédigé sur un noveau plan d’après les derniers traités de paix et les découvertes les plus récentes (Paris: Chez Jules Renouard Libraire, 1833), 53. Puccini, “Balbi, Romagnosi e Cattaneo,” 121. Balbi, Compendio di geografia universale, 398. Balbi, ibid., 398–399. Balbi, Introduction a l’Atlas Ethnographique du Globe, 110 Balbi, ibid., lxxxi–lxxxii. Balbi also refuted evolutionism and believed in the Great Deluge; it was, to a certain extent still imbibed of eighteenth-century catastrophism when it came to explaining the origin of mankind. See Puccini, “Balbi, Romagnosi e Cattaneo,” 124. See also, concerning the different taxonomic ranks adopted by monogenists and polygenist, Banton, Racial Theories, 5. Silvana Patriarca, Numbers and Nationhood, 66–69. Balbi, Introduction a l’Atlas Ethnographique du Globe, cxxxvi–cxxxvii. Balbi, Abrégé de Géographie, 52–54; Adriano Balbi, Bilancia politica del Globo, ossia Quadro geografico-statistico della Terra conforme alle ultime politiche transazioni e più recenti scoperte (Padua: Zambeccari, 1833), 140–141. Balbi, Bilancia politica del Globo, 140. Balbi, however, continued to defend the utility of physical anthropology as late as in the 1840s; see Adriano Balbi, Dello stato attuale dell’Italia, in Miscellanea. Ragionamenti di geografia e statistica patria. Raccolti e ordinati da Eugenio Balbi (Milan: Civelli, 1845), 294. Balbi, Introduction a l’Atlas Ethnographique du Globe, 61. Balbi, ibid., xxi. Balbi, ibid., xxi. For the French original: C’est donc par le seul examen des langues que parlent les divers peuples de la Terre, qu’on peut remonter à l’origine primitive des nations qui l’habitent. L’histoire ne peut nous guider dans cette investigation, que jusqu’aux temps auxquels elle remonte; encore cela n’est-il possible qu’à l’égard du petit nombre

A plural Italy?  79

93 94 95 96 97 98

99 100 101 102 103 104

105 106 107 108 109

de nations qui possèdent des annales, ou de celles dont quelques souvenirs ont été conservés par des historiens étrangers. Le plus grand nombre des nations du monde est hors de son domaine; et là où l’histoire se tait, et où les traditions populaires même nous manquent, là se présente l’ethnographie pour nous aider, par le sage emploi des faits qu’elle a recueillis, à remonter jusqu’à l’origine primitive des différentes nations. Si l’on a dit avec raison que la géographie et la chronologie sont les deux yeux de l’histoire, il nous semble que l’ethnographie est pour toutes les deux ce que la chronologie est à l’histoire. Sans une division bien distincte des dates et des époques, tout est confusion dans cette dernière ; sans la distinction bien précise des peuples, l’histoire et la géographie deviennent un véritable chaos, un labyrinthe, où se perdent les esprits les plus supérieurs, les savants doués de la plus vaste érudition. Balbi, Bilancia politica del Globo, 148. Balbi, Introduction a l’Atlas Ethnographique du Globe, lxxv. Balbi, ibid., xx. Balbi, ibid., xx. Balbi, ibid., xlj. As for the linguistic tables of Europe, see Balbi, Introduction a l’Atlas Ethnographique du Globe, 161 and following. It is noteworthy that the monogenist Balbi argues that we can correctly use the term ‘autochthonous’ to designate not a population that was ‘created,’ but, more simply, a population whose predecessors on a given territory are ignored. See Balbi, Introduction a l’Atlas Ethnographique du Globe, 61–62. On the division between Indo-European/Aryan and Semitic peoples, see Leon Poliakov, The Aryan Myth: A History of Racist and Nationalist Ideas in Europe (New York: Basic Books, 1974); Maurice Olender, The Languages of Paradise: Race, Religion, and Philology in the Nineteenth Century (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1991); Stefan Arvidsson, Aryan Idols: Indo-European Mythology as Ideology and Science (Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press, 2006). Balbi, Introduction a l’Atlas Ethnographique du Globe, 29. It must be said, however, that Balbi employs that term to describe that family of languages ‘spanning from the banks of the Ganges to Iceland’; see Balbi, ibid., 27. See Balbi, Abrégé de Géographie, 279–282; on dialects in particular, see Balbi, Bilancia politica del Globo, 148; 242–244. Balbi, Abrégé de Géographie, 282. Balbi, ibid. On the meanings of the lemma souche, see Dictionnaires de français LaRousse, “souche,” last accessed March 6, 2019, http://www.larousse.fr/dictionnaires/ francais/souche/73573. Balbi, Bilancia Politica del Globo, 148: ‘The stock or ethnographic family is constituted by a group of languages which display great similarities among themselves. They reveal, so to say, such a level of “kinship” that is possible to identify a common origin, especially when history can help us in reconstructing the migrations of the populations speaking such languages. This sister languages constitute the families, or, in other words, the ethnographic stocks.’ Maurice Olender has noticed the extensive reliance of comparative linguistics on the models of botany. See Olender, The Languages of Paradise, 15–18. Balbi, Introduction a l’Atlas Ethnographique du Globe, xvj. Balbi, ibid., xvji. Patriarca, Numbers and Nationhood, 142–143. See Maria Luisa Sturani, Gilles Pécout, Edoardo Boria, and Bianca Maria Mennini. See Maria Luisa Sturani, “I giusti confini dell’Italia. La rappresentazione cartografica della nazione,” Storica. Rivista di storia dell’800 e del ‘900 1, no. 3 (July 1998): 427–446; Gilles Pécout, “La carta d’Italia nella

80  A plural Italy?

110

111 112

113

pedagogia politica del Risorgimento,” in Immagini della nazione nell’Italia del Risorgimento, eds. Alberto M. Banti and Roberto Bizzocchi (Rome: Carocci, 2002), 69–87; Edoardo Boria and Bianca Maria Mennini, “Il discorso della nazione in Italia dal Risorgimento al Fascismo attraverso le carte geografiche,” in Costruire una nazione. Politiche, discorsi e rappresentazioni che hanno fatto l’Italia, eds. Valeria Deplano and Silvia Aru (Verona: Ombre corte, 2013), 17–44. Patriarca, Numbers and Nationhood, 9; Sturani, “I giusti confini dell’Italia,” 429. See, also, Theodor M. Porter, The Rise of Statistical Thinking, 1820–1900 (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1986); Id., Trust in Numbers: The Pursuit of Objectivity in Science and Public Life (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1995). Balbi, Compendio di geografia universale, xiv–xvi. On the influence of Balbi, see Patriarca, Numbers and Nationhood, 122, 160–161; Id., “Patriottismo, nazione e italianità nella statistica del Risorgimento,” in Immagini della nazione nell’Italia del Risorgimento, 113–114; Sandra Puccini, ed. L’uomo e gli uomini. Scritti antropologici italiani dell’Ottocento (Rome: CISU, 1991), 52–53; Puccini, “Balbi Romagnosi Cattaneo,” 121. The origin of the term incivilimento is still not certain, although it seems that Balbi has adopted the term from Romagnosi’s renown work of 1832 and used that in his 1833 Bilancia politica del Globo; see Puccini, “Balbi Romagnosi Cattaneo,”126. Balbi employs the term ‘anthropology’ with the understanding of cultural and, most of all, the study of the physical man. It has been, however, impossible to discern if Balbi was the first one using such a term in the Italian cultural debate. See Balbi, Abrégé de Géographie, ii, iv, lxxix, 993; Balbi, Bilancia politica del Globo, xv); Balbi, Dello stato attuale dell’Italia, 294.

3

The ‘Lombard Question’ Catholic Liberal intelligentsia and the racialization of the Romano-Germanic encounter

Italian scholars have labeled the Questione Longobarda (‘Lombard Question’) to refer to the literary and historiographical debate involving influential figures of the Risorgimento intelligentsia like Alessandro Manzoni, Cesare Balbo, Carlo Troya, Gino Capponi, along with several others, that spanned decades from the 1820s to the 1850s. The debate centered on the role played by the Lombards in Italian history. The Lombards, a Germanic population, invaded and settled in Italy in the late sixth century CE: their role in inaugurating the Middle Ages in the Peninsula was unanimously acknowledged by scholars and intellectuals since the Renaissance. This querelle about the relations between Romans and Lombards was not, however, a novelty of the Risorgimento. It is possible, in fact, to find early modern humanists, as well as seventeenth- and eighteenth-century philologists, antiquarians, and historians, with an interest in Romano-Germanic relations. As time went by, two main points of contention gradually emerged: the nature of the relations between the invaded and the invaders, and their possible ‘fusion’ into a single newer ‘Italian’ ethnicity. The nineteenth-c entury Questione Longobarda—inaugurated by Manzoni’s popular historical essay Discorso sur alcuni punti di storia longobardica in Italia (1822)—can be therefore considered a continuation of an age-old debate covering topics, such as the Romano-Lombard relations, the Latin heritage of Italy, and the role of the papacy. With the advent, however, of nationalism—and of Romanticism in particular—the Questione acquired a new relevance that went beyond mere erudite concerns about Lombard laws or papal diplomacy. The Questione in this period was set into a coherent nationalist frame in which the invaded Romano-Italics of the early Middle Ages prefigured the Italians struggling for their independence. Such parallelism stressing the continuity between Romano-Italics and modern Italians would gradually acquire a more defined ethnic dimension, with a growing focus on the persistence of linguistic, cultural, and racial traits. Evidence of this trend and, in particular, the references to ‘two races’—a ‘Latin’ and a ‘Germanic’—pitted against each other can be observed in the works

82  The ‘Lombard Question’ of the novelist and playwright Alessandro Manzoni, and most of all in the considerations of the historians Carlo Troya and Gino Capponi.1 Although these intellectuals did not completely focus on the racial dimension of the question, it is evident—I would argue—that as time went by, the ethnographic aspect of the relations between the Latin and Germanic populations would gradually acquire a paramount role in the racialization of the political, cultural, and diplomatic relations between the main powers of nineteenth-century Europe. I have chosen to focus on the main representatives of the so-called ‘NeoGuelph’ component of Risorgimento moderate liberals for two main reasons: first, the relevance of these thinkers, and second, the greater influence exerted by the Neo-Guelph—Catholic—intellectuals on contemporary Italian culture in comparison, for example, to their secularized counterpart: the anti-clerical Neo-Ghibellini.2 So far as this choice might appear arbitrary— or rigidly dictated by Benedetto Croce’s assessment of the superior quality and influence of the Neo-Guelph production—it must also be said that some of the themes elaborated by the Catholic authors seemed to effectively experience a greater fortune in the coeval discourse about national identity.3 Among them stood the defense of Roman Catholicism and the papacy, but also, the identification of Italian culture with the classical heritage, the myth of the Italian ‘primacy,’ along with, alas, a latent but increasing anti-French and anti-German sentiment. What emerges, in particular, from the Neo-Guelph works is the increasing racialization of the Italians as a ‘stock’ originated from their quasimythical Pelasgian ancestors, and which gradually evolved through the Etruscan, Roman, and finally the medieval experience without any significant ethno-racial alteration prompted by the Germanic invasions. The NeoGuelph authors, therefore, tended to reinforce the two main themes of the autochthony, and most of all, the immutability of Italian ethnicity in the face of rampant ‘Germanism.’ This rendition of the Italian ethnogenesis was not devoid of notable contradictions, at least as concerns the ethnic homogeneity of the pre-Roman populations of the Peninsula (in this sense, the reference in these works to a Pelasgian ‘primacy,’ the Latin heritage, and Roman Catholicism served also to counterbalance the findings of the antiquarian and historiographical tradition stressing the ethnic diversity rather than uniformity of the ancient Peninsula). Furthermore, the examination of the Lombard Question, at least from the Neo-Guelph side, enables us to observe the extent to which, well into the 1850s, the notion of race as ‘lineage’—nonetheless characterized by the immutability and transmission of certain psycho-moral and cultural traits—was far from being superseded by the newer naturalistic understandings of ‘variety’ and ‘type.’ The reason for such persistence of older understandings of the term has to be found—I would suggest—in a methodological preference for historiography and, also, an unconcealed cultural bias against comparative linguistics and the natural history of man.

The ‘Lombard Question’  83

The two nations on the same land We already have two races of men divided by two different national denominations; we also have another separation; the legal one. What else do we need to consider them as two distinct nations?4 With these few words, the poet and novelist Alessandro Manzoni (1785– 1873) summed up the nature of the relationship between the Romano-Italics and Lombards at the onset of the Middle Ages: the violent subjugation of the autochthonous ‘Italians’ by the invading ‘barbarians.’ The themes of the conflict between and separation of these two ethnicities would be the architrave of his historical reflection—the Discorso sur alcuni punti di storia longobardica in Italia—which he published in 1822, in addition to his renowned tragedy, the Adelchi. The demise of the Lombard Kingdom in eighth- century Italy and the grievous end of the last Lombard king Desiderius and his heir, Adelchi, provided an opportunity for the famous Milanese author to recount an enthralling historical tragedy. The Adelchi was presented by Manzoni as the result of well-grounded research in which the poetic license of the fiction did not prevent historical verisimilitude and plausibility. Manzoni’s central argument—aired in the tragedy, and expounded in the historical appendix—was that the disappearance of the Lombard rule had to be found in their incapacity to peacefully coexist and mingle with their Romano-Italic neighbors. In short, the Adelchi was, besides a struggle among single figures, a clash among nations. After all, the Adelchi does not represent the only literary case in which inter-ethnic conflicts are the pretext for a theatrical play or a simple fiction. Nineteenth-century, and especially, early nineteenth-century literature was characterized by the flourishing of the historical novel: the theme of the two conflicting nations on the same land definitively represented one of its most popular staples, for it could offer several interpretations of coeval social and political conflicts, as well as a powerful rhetorical tool against the ‘oppressors’ of the ‘motherland.’ In an age of nationalism and revolution, the study of history often became a field of political confrontation. The legitimacy of an ideology, a political system, or a national cause was often traced back to a distant past. Divided nations: race, blood… class, and freedom Before Manzoni’s renowned literary tragedy, other and more influential European authors had already popularized the theme of the ‘two nations.’ Both Walter Scott in Great Britain and Augustin Thierry in France disseminated among the broader European public the lasting effects of the conflict between the Anglo-Saxon commoners versus the Norman aristocracy and the Romano-Gauls versus the Franks, respectively, as the founding event of their respective nationalities. In particular, the influence of

84  The ‘Lombard Question’ Augustin Thierry on Manzoni proved crucial: his Lettres sur l’histoire de France, published in the Courier Français in 1820, were the inspiration for the successive work of the Italian author.5 Manzoni adopted the struggle between the Romano-Gaul commoners—the roturiers—and the Frankish invaders as the template for his narrative about the conflict opposing the autochthonous Romano-Italics to the invading Lombards.6 As Alberto Mario Banti has noted, this dichotomic vision of history—according to which the origin of the modern nations had to be sought in the clash between natives and invaders—also suggested that the struggle for political and national freedoms was first and foremost a struggle among ‘races.’7 In this perspective, national history (and national struggles) were effectively antedated to a remote past: By basing the origin of national history on a question of racial distinctions, [the Romantic authors] intended to place its narration within a broader discursive frame which already considered the nation the foundation of the public sphere and, therefore, the collective subject establishing the political sphere. Moreover, by linking [the nation] to a specific soil and line of descent, [they] further characterized its essence. This was a type of approach that dramatically diverged from any kind of view of political communities typical of cosmopolitanism, voluntarism, or natural law, and that had, among its most notable advocates, authors like Burke, Fichte, Körner, Clausewitz, Coleridge, and Chateaubriand. Scott, Thierry, and Manzoni fully belong to this discursive frame [the Romantic one], which they enrich with further aspects and nuances.8 While Manzoni did not seem to devote a significant share of his analysis to the ethnographic aspect of the conflict among nations, in Scott’s Ivanhoe the different groups—whether Normans, Anglo-Saxons, or Jews—were defined as ‘races,’ with their ‘different blood’ and even unique somatic traits. The history of England following the Norman Conquest of 1066 and the establishment of the infamous ‘Norman Yoke’ upon the Anglo-Saxon commoners was therefore the result of the clash between the ‘hostile bloods’ of two ‘enemy races.’9 In Thierry’s work, in contrast, the racialization of the political conflict between the commoners and the cities on the one side, and the aristocracy and the feudal rulers on the other, was even more evident than in his British counterpart. The Third Estate was the heir of the Romano-Gaul city-dwellers and commoners, while the reigning dynasty and the aristocracy were the descendants of the conquering Franks. Henri De Boulainvilliers (1658–1722) suggested the Frankish origins of French aristocracy, and François De Montlosier (1755–1838) argued for the persistence and legitimacy of Frankish representative institutions in the modern French monarchy.10 Thus, Thierry’s ethno-racial interpretation of French history was by no means a novelty. Thierry, for his part, aimed at reversing

The ‘Lombard Question’  85 Montlosier’s argument by showing that the only legitimate social and political subject was the Third Estate, and that its political legitimacy derived neither from any Frankish institution nor from monarchical concessions since it resulted from the Romano-Gaul municipia which resisted and survived the traumatic event of conquest and feudalism to the present day.11 If Scott adopted a conciliatory tone by showing that the division engendered by the Norman Conquest was eventually mitigated by the benign government of King Richard I, from Thierry’s perspective, the original ethno-racial fracture did not heal, and evolved, on the contrary, into a socio-political class divide between the citizens of the Third Estate and the aristocracy. To be fair, it was Thierry himself who clarified—while still partially contradicting his own ideas about the persistence of racial traits—that the original divide did not maintain its ethno-racial peculiarities, but rather that it persisted in the different values, habits, mindsets, and political cultures of the respective social actors of Restoration France.12 As for Manzoni, it was only with Charlemagne’s conquest of the Lombard Kingdom in the eighth century CE that Lombards and ‘Italians’—at this point, both ruled and restrained by an external actor—would gradually coalesce into a single people.13 Against this backdrop, it is evident that race and lineage were employed as lenses through which it was possible to interpret different national (and political) histories. Besides the focus on the Middle Ages and the theme of the conflict between ‘two races,’ the works of Scott, Thierry, and Manzoni could hardly be considered a mere repetition of each other’s structure and scope. The common thread linking nation, race, and freedom served political purposes that, though deeply interrelated, show significant distinctions. Scott and Thierry connected the contrasts among races, peoples (and classes/estates) with the quest for a specific model of freedom: that is, the one guaranteed by the modern constitutions and their related representative governments. As Banti notes, the struggle of the oppressed ethnicities is ‘in the name and in the memory of ancient freedoms, which is also the memory of ancient free institutions (the Saxon witenagemot, and the Gallo-Roman municipia).’14 For Manzoni, on the other hand, the focus was clearly on the definition of the Italian nationality in opposition to the different waves of conquest (and oppression) by invading foreign elements. In the Discorso, the struggle pitting Romano-Italics against the invading Lombards does not seed social conflict between commoners and feudal aristocracy, but rather foments a simple, naked enmity between ‘Italians’ and ‘foreigners.’ From such a perspective, it is clear that for the Milanese author the Italians needed to shake off foreign oppression, and re-acquire their national independence and freedom before devoting themselves to any other task.15 Needless to say, the fact that a liberal Italian author of the 1820s focused on the oppression of his motherland rather than on the history of representative institutions should by no means surprise us, and neither did it surprise the public (and the opponents) of Manzoni.

86  The ‘Lombard Question’ Romans and Barbarians: Latinism and Germanism The work of Manzoni drew inspiration from a model that was based on the dichotomy between the invaded and the invaders as the inceptive moment of modern national histories. There was, however, in the Discorso (and, to be fair, also in Thierry), another divide that was deeply interrelated to the issue of conquest: the clash between the Latin civilization and the Germanic world. It was no coincidence that among several historical events characterizing Italy’s thousands of years of history, Manzoni decided to focus on the events following the Lombard invasion of the Peninsula in 568 CE. Undoubtedly, the Germanic invasions of the fifth and sixth centuries were increasingly perceived by the eighteenth- and nineteenth-century scholars as one of the main watersheds of European history, for their evident and lasting modification of the ethnolinguistic pattern of the entire continent.16 In Italy, in particular, scholars investigated the extent to which the Lombard conquest proved to be so disruptive of the old Roman institutions to the point of representing a real line of demarcation between the Late Antiquity and the early Middle Ages.17 Such a traumatic fracture, which seemed generally assumed by the authors that we will presently examine, was expounded by the Florentine scholar Gino Capponi, who identified the beginning of ‘modern Italian history’ in the ‘perishing of the Roman world’ at the hands of the conquering Lombards.18 In short, the invasion of the Peninsula by the ‘pagan’ and bellicose Lombards constituted an inescapable topic for many scholars, and became the arena of a heated confrontation between those who recognized the contribution of these Germanic people in the ethnogenesis of modern Italians, and, on the other hand, those who minimized it. The question of the contribution of the Germanic population to the shaping of modern European ethnicities did not constitute, however, the only reason for such a renewed interest in the medieval world. In addition to the persistence of several antiquarian, philological, and historical questions dating back to the early Modern Age, modern historians have also identified the crucial role played by Romanticism in the overall re-evaluation of the Middle Ages after a period of discredit during the Enlightenment.19 In this new cultural climate, the Middle Ages ceased to be considered a ‘Dark Age,’ or a sterile interlude of endless decadence between the idealized Classical Antiquity and the Modern Era. Rather, it began to be considered a dynamic age of transition from the ancient and Mediterranean-centered GrecoRoman world, to the new, ‘proper’ Europe embracing the entire continent. It was not a coincidence, for example, that in exploring nineteenth-century culture, Sebastiano Timpanaro has suggested adding to the problematic— and often blurred—distinction between Classicists and Romantics a new analytical approach based on the two opposite attitudes toward the Medio Evo and its legacy.20 One might disagree with Timpanaro’s proposal for its excessive simplicity, at least from the standpoint of the history of literature. It must be said, however, that the question of the ‘Germanic’ contribution to

The ‘Lombard Question’  87 the modern Italian ethnogenesis constituted one of the most divisive themes in the historiographical debate of the Risorgimento. Another aspect in the reconsideration of the Middle Ages that should be taken into account is represented, of course, by the re-evaluation of Christianity following the demise of the Napoleonic regime. Such a defense of Christianity, epitomized by François-René De Chateaubriand’s Génie du Christianisme (1802), would take the form, in France, Spain, Italy, and other Catholic countries, of apologetics of the role of the Roman Catholic Church. This was among the main reasons for Manzoni’s decision to draft a historical essay about the Lombards and their interaction with the RomanoItalic native population.21 The conclusions regarding the role of Christianity in relation to the invading barbarians were affected by the respective national and religious environments of the authors. As a general tendency, however, we can observe that, regardless of the view of the ‘barbarians’ or of the Catholic Church and papacy, the founding role of Christianity in the development of a new Christian Romano-Germanic world was generally shared.22 Meanwhile, a parallel debate ensued, concerned with the extent to which the new Christian and Germanic society led to the demise of ancient slavery system—a question strongly related to the ongoing debate of the ancient versus modern liberty.23 Expectedly, those Romantic authors who, in the footsteps of a certain traditional interpretation of Tacitus’ De origine et situ Germanorum, regarded the ancient ‘Germans’ as the quintessential embodiment of freedom and patriotism were much more likely to emphasize the positive contribution of the Germanic populations. Madame De Stäel, for example, welcomed the advent of these Germanic tribes ‘fit for liberty’ as the forces rejuvenating the decadent and old Greco-Roman ‘stocks.’24 Needless to say, such a vision of the Germanics as the new ‘chosen people’— which traced back to the German Renaissance and Reformation—became the forte of German nationalism. This interpretation of early medieval ethnogeneses, coupled with a growing anti-French and anti-Napoleonic sentiment, did, of course, significantly contribute to the development of a negative view of Rome and the Latin world, as well as enthusiasm for (Pan-) German national grand designs.25 Expectedly, this panegyric to the ‘free’ Germanic ‘stocks’ could not be met with the same enthusiasm by Italian scholars and intellectuals, who, on the contrary, vindicated the positive role of classical culture in molding not only Italian identity, but also its cultural superiority on the rest of Europe.26 In this perspective, the contribution of Germanic peoples to the shaping of modern Italian identity was received with extreme circumspection, for it could undermine a narrative hinged on the idea of the Italian ‘primacy’ and the theory of the persistence and continuity of the Latin culture in the Peninsula. Classicist scholars, in particular, defined the Italian culture as quintessentially Etruscan, Greek, and Latin: even those who, like Romagnosi, did not pay particular attention to the debate between Classicists and Romantics doubted that the Germanic invasion could have altered

88  The ‘Lombard Question’ the Romano-Italic heritage of the Italian culture. Similar doubts were harbored by the renowned poet Giacomo Leopardi.27 Undoubtedly, as it has been noted, Classicism in Italy proved more resilient than elsewhere in Europe, incidentally hindering the spread of comparative linguistics.28 After all, this new discipline, by identifying a common Indo-European linguistic ancestor, was perceived as implicitly disrupting the affinity between the classical world and the first Egyptian and Middle Eastern civilization and, therefore, as threatening the thesis of an Italian—‘Pelasgian’—‘primacy.’29 In addition, certain boutades of German nationalist scholars were undoubtedly too overstated to be pacifically received by the educated Italian public. The theory of a ‘divine language’ inherited by the ‘Indo-Germanics,’ as expounded by the German linguist Friedrich Schlegel, or the idea of the Germanic ‘blood’ and ‘races’ as the harbinger of freedom, civilization, and regeneration to the whole European continent, piqued some Italian scholars. This reaction is, for example, clearly discernible in the correspondences of the Neapolitan historian Carlo Troya, who did not conceal his criticism of German historiographers, and Capponi, who stigmatized the ‘current tendency’ of finding ‘Germanic origins in everything.’30 Besides a genuine scholarly concern, it is also evident that for Italian intellectuals, other and more important issues were at stake. In fact, the hypothesis according to which Germanic invasions significantly altered the societal and ethnic pattern of the Peninsula could have undermined the idea of a substantial ethnic continuity between the modern Italians and their renowned and celebrated Italic ancestors. In this perspective, the defense of the Latin identity also meant the construction of a barrier against any possible pretension and encroachment of German nationalism. On the other hand, it was almost impossible to deny that medieval Italy did not resemble its classical counterpart, if only because the Germanic invasions and the collapse of the Roman institutions in the West shattered that political unity and, most of all, the sovereignty for which all Italian nationalists yearned.31 These conflicting aspects could engender several problems when it came to examining, for example, the origins of the Italian medieval ‘free’ comuni, which were celebrated by Italian nationalists as one of the first manifestations of Italian independence. The question of whether these self-governing city-states were the direct offspring of the Roman municipia or, on the contrary, sprang from ‘Germanic’ roots was of paramount importance, for it could have meant that an institution celebrated as the most quintessentially ‘Italian’ did not have pure national origins.32 The framing of medieval history on such a dichotomic vision hinged on the confrontation between Latin and Germanic ‘elements’ characterized, of course, also the debate surrounding the Questione Longobarda, in which the same, if not even deeper, contradictions were evident. As Mauro Moretti and Ilaria Porciani have noted, if the ‘surge’ of antiGerman feelings emphasized the destructive nature of the Lombard rule, it risked implicitly refuting that continuity of Roman traditions and

The ‘Lombard Question’  89 institutions meant to be the architrave of the future Italian identity. In other words, had the Lombards been successful in erasing all remnants of the previous Roman culture and politics, it would have been extremely difficult to talk about modern Italy as the direct heir of Rome and the Italic world. Conversely, if such a continuity were stressed, one might have to admit that, after all, the Lombards were by no means a disruptive parenthesis, but rather constituted an integral component in the development of the Italian civil and political cultures of the early and late Middle Ages.33 This is, as Enrico Artifoni has observed, the ‘irremediable aporia’ which scholars had to face, and which resulted in the framing of the debate only within the supposed ethnic divide between Latins and Lombards, between invaded and invaders. It took decades for Italian culture to overcome that conceptual bottleneck, and develop a historiographical approach in which the ethnic element would not constitute the only overarching criterion, and to acknowledge that the ancient and medieval socio-political interactions did not overlap with their modern nationalist projections.34

The Lombards, the Italians…and the Pope The ‘Neo-Guelph’ authors The elements at stake in the Lombard Question not only included the relationship between ‘Latin’ and ‘Germanic’ cultures, but also the historical role of Christianity, and especially of the Roman Catholic Church. To be more specific, the historical debate surrounding the papacy constituted one of the main points of conflict. The bone of contention regarded, in particular, the evaluation of the conduct of Pope Adrian I, who sought, shortly after his succession in 772, help from the Frankish king Charlemagne to defeat and oust the Lombard king Desiderius. This event marked the demise of Lombard rule and the definitive incorporation of the Regnum Italicum into the Frankish governance, sparking a historical debate reconnecting to the age-old quarrel about the influence of the papacy in Italian history. Among other things, the dispute revolved around the political action of the pope in relation to the political fragmentation of Italy. This was an issue that, needless to say, particularly concerned the Italian intelligentsia and resulted in the creation of two opposing views of the institution of papacy: either the ultimate defender of the Italians, or a main obstacle to the unification of the Peninsula under one scepter.35 Against this backdrop, the two conflicting views gradually consolidated after the early Modern Age, essentially confronting the legitimacy of the temporal power of the papacy. On the one hand, the idea that the Lombards had subjugated and enslaved the Italians—and that, therefore, Adrian’s request of aid to the Franks was an obligatory choice—justified the political power of the Pope as the ultimate defender of the dignity and freedom of the Italian people. On the other hand, the claim that the Lombard rule

90  The ‘Lombard Question’ was not as harsh as usually portrayed (and that, rather, native and conquerors pacifically coexisted and intermingled) seemed to demonstrate that the pope acted out of political selfishness because he was only concerned with safeguarding his possessions from Lombard expansionism. Furthermore, it meant that the pope’s calling of Charlemagne was just the first of a long series of acts of illegitimate papal interference preventing the formation of an Italian kingdom (and, therefore, an Italian nation-state).36 In this way, the pope was seen as having hindered the complete unification of the Peninsula, as well as permanently weakened the national character of the Italians through the moral subjugation to the dogmas of Roman Catholicism. This perspective was restated by Jean-Charles-Leonard Sismonde de Sismondi in his influential Histoire des républiques italiennes du moyen âge (1807–1818). Manzoni, who deeply admired Sismondi, determined to refute such a harsh judgment of the papacy and Roman Catholicism, and he did so in both his works: Sulla morale cattolica. Osservazioni (1820) and the Discorso.37 Manzoni’s strong pro-papal stance in this old quarrel surrounding the early Italian Middle Ages led scholars to define him as the ‘trailblazer’ of Neo-Guelph thought.38 Undoubtedly, the Discorso inaugurated a tradition of studies that reached maturity in the 1840s with the works by Troya, Capponi, Cesare Balbo, and Vincenzo Gioberti.39 The inclusion of Manzoni, however, under such a label might be somewhat problematic, since he cannot be considered—at least politically speaking—a ‘proper’ Neo-Guelph. As Martin Thom has noted, Manzoni shared with Troya, Capponi, Balbo, and Gioberti the ‘same set of enemies.’ However, Manzoni never believed in a providential religious and national mission of Italy, nor did he defend the temporal power of the pope.40 As Artifoni suggests, the interpretation of these different authors as forming a compact Neo-Guelph ‘school’ may derive from Benedetto Croce’s emphasis on their ‘fervid’ Catholicism, as well as their apologetics of the papacy. As the latter remarked, the ‘projection’ of the ‘needs of present Italy’ on medieval history was undoubtedly one of the main aspects connecting all these thinkers.41 Not surprisingly, nationalism was among the major forces animating and framing the entire debate. There could not have been, in fact, a better allusion to the state of distress of Italian nationalism following the failure of Murat’s enterprise in 1815 and the harsh Austrian repression of 1820– 1821 than the fictionalized struggle of the conquered ‘Italians’ against the conquering—‘German’—Lombards.42 That said, there is in Manzoni, as well as in the other authors, a genuine desire to renovate the Italian historiographical debate by investigating, as Croce has pointed out, the ‘social life of Italy,’ previously neglected by historians and antiquarians.43 In this sense, Manzoni successfully restructured the historiographical debate by focusing on pivotal and controversial themes such as the nature of the Lombard rule as well as the legal codification of the relations between Lombards and Romano-Italics.44 The main target of the Discorso was represented, as we will see, by the historiographical tradition that maintained a peaceful

The ‘Lombard Question’  91 coexistence and ‘fusion’ of Romano-Latins and Lombards giving birth to the modern Italian nationality. This thesis had, among other influential exponents, the humanist and statesman Niccolò Machiavelli (1469–1527), and the historians Ludovico Antonio Muratori (1672–1750) and Carlo Denina (1731–1813).45 The re-examination of juridical sources initiated by Manzoni would be eventually carried on and deepened by the Neapolitan historian Carlo Troya (1784–1858), who maintained an epistolary discussion with the Piedmontese statesman Cesare Balbo (1789–1853) on several aspects of Italian history.46 It is important to note that, in this correspondence, a theme almost ignored by Manzoni in his Discorso would appear: ethnography.47 As we will see, Troya felt compelled to express his skepticism to Balbo toward the new ethnolinguistic investigations by reasserting the primacy of historiography and of the examination of written sources.48 It is, however, Gino Capponi (1792–1876) who would examine the Lombard Question from an ethno-racial standpoint, with a particular emphasis on the persistence of moral and cultural traits of the two different Latin and Germanic ‘races’ from antiquity to the modern times.49 In short, it would not be completely incorrect, as Artifoni suggests, to refer to the Lombard Questions, rather than a single ‘Question,’ since the question underpinning such a debate changed and evolved throughout time, with a visible shift from the initial analysis of the civil and juridical institutions under Manzoni and Troya to the extensive digression on ‘ethnology’ with Capponi.50 With the latter, in effect, we see the discussion and development of themes and concepts that seem far from the focus of previous authors, such as the persistence of pre-Roman ethnocultural substrata, the IndoEuropean migrations, and how these phenomena interacted in the formation of the modern Italian ethnicity. Such a thematic expansion surely represents an undeniable departure, from the initial issues of conquest and defense of the papacy, or the vague dualism between Germanic and Latin worlds. If the crisis of Neo-Guelphism following the disengagement of Pope Pius IX from the First War of Independence in 1848–1849 and the institutionalization of historical disciplines would mark the definitive demise of the Lombard Question, some of the ethnographic themes and questions expounded would outlive the debate itself to reappear in the following years. At this point, it is necessary to briefly describe these themes prior to attempting a reconstruction of the ethnography of Italy according to these authors. Conquest, subjugation, legislation, and marriages The dominant theme of the Lombard Question was undoubtedly conquest. For Manzoni, the relations between the invading Lombards and the invaded Romano-Latins were based on an asymmetrical dynamics: Two, sometimes more nations, living on the same land, divided by interests, language, customs, and even laws: this was the phenomenon

92  The ‘Lombard Question’ occurring all over Europe after the invasion and the settlement of the barbarians. When the conflicts were ongoing, natives and invaders were in an actual state of war. Yet, once the war ceased with the subjugation of the former, the relationship between the two populations was necessarily solidified into a permanent and, to a certain extent, legallysanctioned condition. All these relations were founded on a similar fact: the conquest…51 Actually, according to Manzoni, the theme of conquest was not particular to the Lombard case only. Rather, following a narrative and analytical model that was deeply indebted to Thierry and Scott, for Manzoni the conquest constituted a ‘real thread through which it is possible to understand the Middle Ages.’52 Troya and Capponi insisted throughout their analysis on these fundamental facts: the invasion, the economic expropriation, and the political and civil submission of the Romano-Italics by the conquering Lombards.53 From this perspective, the violent conquest of Italy transcended the dimension of the mere (traumatic) historical event to become the point of departure for a new societal and political arrangement which would deeply impact relations between the ‘Italians’ and the ‘barbarians’ for the centuries to come. For this reason, also, the entire debate around the Lombard age did not revolve around the simple narration of the (egregious) historical events, but also, on those juridical institutions—first and foremost civil rights and marriage—that, by codifying the relations between conquering and conquered, appeared to be the ultimate litmus test for understanding the very nature of the Lombard rule. Lastly, it was thought that the examination of legislation, edicts, and decrees enabled an understanding of both the actual ‘intermingling’ of ‘races’ and the persistence of Roman institutions or not—issues far from tangential to the entire question. Manzoni undoubtedly represented, in this sense, the most ‘catastrophist’ of the authors examined, and he was, at least for what concerns this particular aspect, completely in line with his interlocutor—Sismondi—who fully embraced the idea of a radical, complete demise of late Roman institutions following the invasion.54 According to Manzoni, the laws, and in particular, the public law of Lombard Italy, testified to the civil and political inferiority of the ‘Italians’ vis-à-vis their Germanic counterparts.55 Specifically, the absence in the guidrigildo (that is the wergild, an institution of the Germanic customary law regulating the compensations following a penal offense) of specific provisions for the Romano-Italics attested, in his opinion, to the condition of inferiority of the conquered natives vis-à-vis the free conquerors.56 This juridical aspect (in addition to the absence of any authority, judge, or magistrate having a Latin name, the violent expropriation and the systematic slaughter of the larger Romano-Italic landowners and authorities) testified not only to the submission of the ‘Italians,’ but, also, to the substantial suppression of the Roman law and its relegation to the transactions among the conquered natives.57 In short, the survival of the

The ‘Lombard Question’  93 Roman law only for transactions and litigations among the Romano-Italics not signify the benevolent nature of the Lombard rule, but, rather, its exclusionist intentions.58 This judgment represented the most radical points of divergence from the position, for example, of the liberal philosopher Giandomenico Romagnosi who, in the same years, maintained not only complete civil equality between Lombards and Romans, but also the continuity (and therefore survival) of Roman institutions after the initial period of inevitable turmoil following the conquest. This position was shared by the influential jurist and historian Friedrich Carl Von Savigny, whose works were well-known and adopted by Romagnosi for his Dell’indole e dei fattori dell’Incivilimento (1832).59 Savigny considered the presence of the Roman jus for the Romano-Italics the proof of a fil-rouge binding Roman municipia to the medieval comuni, and, ultimately, of the benevolent attitude of the conquerors toward the conquered.60 This idea of a ‘Lombard clemency’ was, however, a reiteration, following a more thorough history of the jurisprudence, of the older position of the aforementioned Machiavelli, and, more recently, of Muratori and Denina. Importantly, Denina, in his monumental monograph Delle rivoluzioni d’Italia (1713–1792), produced an extremely positive assessment of the Lombard invasion, portrayed as a new ‘beginning’ after the tormented late Roman age.61 Manzoni’s attack on the ‘excesses’ and oversights of the ‘pro-Lombard’ historiography—especially for what concerns the juridical aspects of the Lombard rule—was continued further developed by Carlo Troya in his monograph Della condizione de’Romani vinti da’ Longobardi e della vera lezione d’alcune parole di Paolo Diacono intorno a tale argomento (1841).62 Troya, in effect, examined the juridical sources and questioned the extent to which historians and scholars before Manzoni had misunderstood Roman and Lombard jargon, especially in interpreting the condition of those ‘strangers’ and other ‘nations’ living under the Lombard rule.63 For his part, Troya maintained that there was no evidence of either Romano-Italics’ juridical equality or their integration in the civil (not to mention the military) administrative structures throughout the entire Lombard domination. In the footsteps of Manzoni, the Neapolitan historian argued that the absence of Latin names among magistrates or other notable civil authorities proved the marginalization and subjugation of the Romano-Italics.64 Moreover, Troya asserted that another aspect of Germanic juridical tradition effectively shed any doubt about the alleged subjugation of the Romano-Italics. According to the Germanic laws, full citizenship was granted only through land ownership, and the systematic deprivation of lands surely prevented Romano-Italics ­ (or at least the great majority of them) to enjoy these rights, and therefore legal equality, before the Lombards.65 Troya’s analysis was followed by Gino Capponi in his Lettere al Prof. Pietro Capei sulla Dominazione dei Longobardi in Italia (1844–1859), originally published in the historical review that he personally founded and

94  The ‘Lombard Question’ directed: the Archivio Storico Italiano.66 The Florentine scholar embraced Troya’s interpretation of the juridical sources, although he tended to further complicate the findings of his predecessors. However, he maintained that Manzoni’s and Troya’s reconstructions proved the most accurate and veritable models. Their rendering, however, of the relations between Lombards and Romano-Italics rested on a rigid dichotomy between conquerors and conquered that, as he underlined, likely became complicated and nuanced as the time went by. Undoubtedly, as he noted, the absence of wergild for the Romano-Italics stood as undeniable evidence of their civil and political inferiority, which was confirmed by the rest of juridical sources as well as historical accounts.67 That being said, Capponi also pointed out that, in the course of time, and especially with the consolidation of Lombard power, evidence suggested that the legal condition of the Romano-Italics may have improved. In other words, the Romano-Italics were indeed to be considered as truly ‘subjected’ to their conquerors, not as ‘slaves’ (at least according to the ancient Greco-Roman social and juridical understanding of the term), but rather as ‘serfs’ according to the Germanic tradition. In this sense, even an author like Capponi, who surely did not hold a positive view of the Lombards, had to admit that Romano-Italics did not have to endure the ‘brutal’ slavery of Classical Antiquity, but, rather the ‘Germanic servitude’ informed by ‘milder customs.’ Such a condition—he added—was probably also not suffered by the totality of Romano-Italics.68 Unlike Manzoni and Troya, Capponi’s words speak to a more cautious approach, and it was the Florentine author himself who, in several passages of his work, maintained that the scarcity of sources available did not allow for a definitive opinion regarding the details of the Romano-Italics ‘servitude’ under the Lombards.69 Capponi, in fact, was the only one among the authors examined to suggest that perhaps the guargangi reported by Troya (namely, those ‘strangers’ who, according to the edicts and codes, were living under the jurisdiction of the Lombard kings) may have also included, among other people, the native Romano-Italics in a condition halfway between the freeborn and the slaves, like the metics of classical Greece.70 Concerning the question of the alleged inter-ethnic marriages between the conquering and the conquered ‘stocks,’ Capponi does not seem to offer an additional opinion. Expectedly, such an issue was of pivotal importance, for it regarded both the juridical condition of the Romano-Italics and their ‘fusion’ with the Lombards, not to mention the criteria of self-representation of the respective groups. As early as 1822, Manzoni did not hesitate to approach the theme of mixed marriages in order to immediately counter one of the strongest pillars of Muratori’s argumentative structure: Muratori uses marriages as evidence [for his thesis of a complete union between Lombards and Romans] when he, prior to asserting that ‘Romans and Lombards had become one people’ he also maintains that they [the Lombards] had become related with the Romans, that is, with

The ‘Lombard Question’  95 the ancient inhabitants of Italy. That illustrious scholar surely forgot, however, that the Lombards had foreseen the blending of the two stocks that could have resulted from marriages, and that they had taken actions in order to prevent it, and that the proof of this foresight and actions can be found in those same laws that he [Muratori] has commented and reissued: ‘if a Roman man marries a Lombard woman, she will become Roman, and their children will become Roman too, and they will follow the law of the father.71 Again, in these few lines, the Milanese scholar revealed his approach to the question, which seemed primarily centered around solving the question of the juridical condition of the ‘Italians’ under the Lombard rule. Manzoni aimed at demonstrating the separation between Lombards and ­Romano-Italics through the example of king Liutprand’s decree of 731, which enforced and implemented the patrilineal inheritance of citizenship, and prevented, in his opinion, not only the juridical recognition of the ‘fusion,’ but, also, its factual realization.72 For those who hope to find detailed ethnographic digressions or speculations about the transmission of national ‘characters,’ the Discorso appears extremely disappointing. The question of the (missed) ‘fusion’ between Lombards and Romano-Latins was approached by Manzoni through a mere juridical standpoint. Accordingly, belonging either to the former or to the latter group seemed to be first and foremost a legal, rather than an ethnographic question, based on ‘blood,’ ‘genius,’ ‘language,’ or physical ‘types.’ And, perhaps, ethnographic digressions would have been completely redundant, since Manzoni clearly stated that Lombard legislators actually ‘prevented’ the ‘confusion of the two stocks’ which they had ‘foreseen’ in the event of mixed marriages.73 The analysis of legal sources was also followed and developed by Troya, who examined a broader array of cases (including the marriages between free and enslaved persons of the two respective groups, but also with those ‘Romans’ who did not belong to the Lombard Kingdom) and the attempts of the Lombard kings to regulate the phenomenon. However, unlike Manzoni, Troya seems to suggest that, in the long run, the Lombard authorities did not manage to enforce such a strict separation between invaders and invaded well before the Frankish conquest in the late eighth century CE.74 It is undeniable that, when compared to the plethora of ethnographic treatises and pamphlets of their age, Manzoni’s and Troya’s works undoubtedly appear dry and even old-fashioned, due to their erudite obsession with the analysis of juridical sources. Both authors seem, in effect, determined to debate the findings of eighteenth-century antiquarianism—and, in particular, the influential works of Muratori and Denina (which maintained a peaceful coexistence between Romano-Italics and Lombards)—on the analysis of legislation. Most of all, they claimed the superiority and objectivity of the historiographical method which relied on the careful examination of

96  The ‘Lombard Question’ written documents as the only solid sources. Troya, for example, did not conceal his skepticism about those emerging disciplines—such as linguistics and ‘ethnology’—and their questionable dependence on un-written (and therefore unreliable) sources.75 Also, if we consider the original point of conflict of the Lombard Question, that is, the condition of the ‘Italians’ under the Lombards and, therefore, the legitimacy of papal intervention, those sources proving the legal submission of the Romano-Italics were the determining ones. Whoever managed to overturn the conclusions of Muratori and Denina by employing the same juridical sources could claim the definitive say in such a long-standing vexata quæstio. And, at least from the standpoint of those juridical sources available at that time, Manzoni was, ­ as Dario Mantovani points out, right, since Lombards and Romano-Italics appear in the sources as two distinct juridical subjects.76 Therefore, the Milanese writer (and whoever followed, such as Troya or Capponi) could legitimately argue that juridical sources demonstrated that, at least until the Frankish invasion in the late eighth century, Romano-Italics were effectively separated from the Lombards and (at least officially) prevented from ‘mixing’ with them. This was, in short, the conclusion of the so-called NeoGuelph historiography aiming first, and foremost, at defending the historical role of the papacy. However, what complicated, and in the long run, invalidated such an interpretation, were the theoretical, methodological (and ideological) premises on which their entire approach to the theme of the Romano-Lombard relations rested. First, as it has been noted, Manzoni’s thesis tended to overlook the passage of time, and it seems that, at least according to the Discorso, Romano-Lombard relations never changed in the arch of three centuries.77 Such an interpretation might have also derived from a rigid reliance on the analysis of legislation, which for its prescriptive nature did not always render the complex and nuanced dynamics of society (and, in this sense, if we may add, Capponi’s cautious remarks on the incompleteness of sources appeared particularly far-sighted).78 Most of all, what seemed to invalidate such an argument is the fact—unknown to Manzoni and the others—that in antiquity and the early Middle Ages, ‘nationality’ and ethnic belonging did not necessarily correspond.79 When Manzoni and the others assumed that the juridical label of ‘Romans’ and ‘Lombards’ really referred to two distinct ethnicities, they fell in the trap of a sort of ‘methodological presentism’ which made them project onto the past the categories of their age, and in particular the distortions resulting from their nationalist mindset. In other words, in the Late Antiquity and early Middle Ages, the terms ‘Roman,’ ‘Lombard,’ and ‘Frankish’ defined the civil and political condition of a subject, rather than an ethnic background (which was in many cases completely irrelevant). The Romantic authors, on the other hand, tended to interpret these ancient ethnonyms as proper nationalities, and therefore attributed to them that unity of language, ethnos, descent, territory, and jurisdiction proper of modern nationalism.80

The ‘Lombard Question’  97 As Italian medievalist Giovanni Tabacco explains, the Lombard Kingdom consisted of ‘a military hierarchy pervasively distributed across the territory’ in which armed free men—rather than the ‘sovereign people’ in the modern understanding of the term—were the political subject summoned to assist the royal authority.81 In this social and political context, the real divide existed between those who belonged to the exercitus Langobardorum (created not as a structured army, but as a conglomeration of the warriors with their respective clans and families) and those who did not. Therefore, the gradual but extensive inclusion of individuals and families of Romano-Italic ‘descent’ in the ranks of the Lombard ‘people’ occurred without any fanfare for the simple reason that the ‘barbarians’ did not recognize themselves in terms of ethnos, but, rather, in terms of family, clan, and, ultimately, political allegiance. After all, as Patrick Geary reminds us, the most important political divide of antiquity did not rest on ethnicity, but, rather, on the separation between citizens and non-citizens, between free and enslaved persons. A representative case of the problematic relationship between onomastics and ethnicity in the ancient world is represented by the Franks, whose name is believed to mean ‘freeborn,’ and who gathered a wide and diverse array of Germanic tribes settled between the lower Meuse and Rhine starting from the third century CE. After an initial phase of turmoil, they secured their place in the Roman imperial system by violently fighting other Germanic invaders as the leaders of the fœderati troops (literally ‘allies’) guarding the Rhine frontier. With the collapse of imperial control in the West in the fifth century, the Frankish military aristocracy did not hesitate to convert to Catholicism to ease their ‘mixing’ with the Romano-Gaul landowning class and incorporated it into their governance, to the point that any modern distinction between ‘Germanics’ and ‘Latins’ would have surely sounded bizarre, if not antithetical, to their political scope.82 Risorgimento and, especially, Romantic intellectuals tended to overlook these complex dynamics, since they all tended to project both their national genealogies and the logic of nation-states onto the remote past. A notable exception to this trend was Carlo Cattaneo, who, in his critique of the Romantic mythographies, pointed out the existence of ‘groups,’ ‘guilds,’ ‘brotherhoods,’ and other socio-political organizations which transcended the alleged ethno-racial gulf between the invaders and the invaded, and invalidated the simplistic thesis of the two ‘enemy nations in the same land.’83 Paradoxically, even men with a profound knowledge of the Classics and well-versed in the examination of the juridical sources failed to note that those ‘nations’ of the past were by no means the ethnically homogeneous and coherent groups that they and the majority of their coeval counterparts imagined. This last aspect did not imply that these intellectuals did not pay attention to the ongoing ethnographic debate aiming at tracing the origins and the evolutions of the past European ‘nations.’ If Manzoni seemed particularly unconcerned with mapping the ethnicities of medieval Europe,

98  The ‘Lombard Question’ Troya, and, most of all Capponi, devoted a significant share of their reflection to the ethnographic investigation of these ‘nations’ and ‘races,’ and the persistence of their traits to the modern day. By exploring these passages, we will achieve a better understanding of their visions of past ethnogeneses, as well as disciplines such as linguistics and anthropology, which had already been adopted and discussed in the broader Italian and European debates.

The ‘ethnology’ of the ‘two nations’ Between historiography and ethnography As we have seen, the Lombard Question was predicated on a dichotomic vision: conquerors versus conquered, invaders versus natives, and, of course, ‘Germanics’ versus ‘Latins.’ Such a vision, which excluded more nuanced and realistic social dynamics between ‘natives’ and ‘foreigners,’ prevented in the long run the resolution of the inescapable aporia upon which the entire Questione unwittingly rested. As noted, an excessive emphasis on the devastating rupture brought about by the Lombard conquest (although politically useful in the pro-papal apologetics) may have caused the questioning of the nationalist assumption that asserted the continuity and preeminence  of the Latin heritage in the Italian culture. On the other hand, the thesis of the irrelevance of the Germanic conquest to the Romano-Italic socio-political structure may have rendered the apology of the pope completely useless. The resolution of this contradiction would only mature in the twentieth century with the institutionalization of a historiography more attentive to the peculiarities of Romano-Germanic relations—in sum, a less nationalist approach to the reconstruction of the past.84 Such an approach to the study of the past was by no means prevalent among the majority of scholarly works of the early nineteenth century, which aimed, on the contrary, to reconstruct consistent ethnic genealogies by projecting the modern idea of nationality onto the remote past. In sum, as ethnicity gradually emerged as the main dominant criterion for the reconstruction of past, the debate regarding the Lombards would eventually evolve from the juridical technicalities of the conquest to the examination of the ethnographic aspects of the encounter between the Latin and Germanic ‘stocks.’ Artifoni suggests that it is possible to divide the entire Questione into different phases, with the ethno-racial dimension of the problem emerging in full force especially after the 1830s, and in particular with the Lettere of Capponi of the 1840s and the 1850s.85 The first debate was dominated by Manzoni’s work, which did not focus on any particularly detailed study of the language, the culture, or the ethnogenesis of the Lombards. Although he makes clear references to distinct ‘races,’ and even the ‘peoples of the North,’ the dominant theme of Manzoni’s narrative is the conquest and the socio-political division that it created.86 Unlike Thierry, where the ‘racial dimension’ plays a ‘remarkable role’ in explaining the

The ‘Lombard Question’  99 course of French history, Mantovani observes, in the Discorso the sociopolitical division between Germanics and Romano-Italics never acquired a clear ethno-racial connotation, but rather is consistently portrayed as the inevitable outcome of the brutality of conquest.87 Accordingly, Manzoni based his narrative on the conflict between two enemy ‘races,’ even though the struggle between the two was not caused by some irreconcilable cultural or racial differences, but rather by the simple and naked enmity engendered by military conquest. Manzoni seemed to emphasize the barbarism of the Lombards to highlight the redeeming role of the papacy, rather than to illustrate an alleged Germanic diversity or inferiority. Even in the second edition of the Discorso (1847), published during a decade when ethno-racial digressions pervaded treatises, works, and ‘universal histories’ of Italy and Europe, Manzoni paid no particular attention to the ethnographical studies on the early Middle Ages.88 After all, the primary concern of Manzoni was the defense of the pope from the anti-clerical tradition. He was the first to concede that, with the normalization following the Frankish conquest, both groups would eventually intermingle. And it is even possible to hypothesize that excessive stress on the racial diversity of the two groups would have complicated the prospect of a subsequent ‘fusion’ as was claimed in the Discorso. If the ethno-racial dimension seems tangential to Manzoni’s argumentative and narrative frame, the same cannot be said for Carlo Troya. In both his epistolary exchange with Balbo and his monograph on the Lombard rule, Troya endeavored to expound his point of view regarding the ancient populations and ethnography in general. In an age when scholars reconstructed the ethnogeneses of European ‘nations’ by resorting to comparative linguistics (and, in some cases, to physical anthropology), Troya seemed to favor historical analysis. In his letters to Cesare Balbo, he expressed his doubts concerning the epistemological validity of the new disciplines.89 When asked about the origins of ancient peoples, he criticized the emerging linguistics by reasserting the need for written evidence to properly reconstruct the history of Eurasian peoples: … I only say that I do not search for the Asian origins of European people. The Goths and the Germanics may even come from Tibet or the Altai, and they might have even spoken, in the dawn of time, the same Sanskrit or Zend language. Honestly, I would gladly leave this kind of research to the Orientalists; it is enough for me to know the most ancient historical reference of a given population and when such a population settled in Europe. And only then, in Europe, will I start to distinguish the races of these people which became Europeans, although it is very likely that they would have spoken the same language in Asia. The identification of the historical origin of each population seems to me the only duty of an honest and reasonable historian: beyond that, everything is darkness, albeit extremely erudite darkness.90

100  The ‘Lombard Question’ However, in the same letter to Balbo, Troya criticized not only linguistics, but also the adoption of physical anthropology in the reconstruction of the history of European ‘races’: …and you surely do not belong to the modern ethnographic school which, in the footsteps of Edward (sic) and Lombard, purports to recognize the ancient races from their modern physical varieties. Honestly, I will tell you that this school of Edward—like the other and more learned school of Adelung, Vater, Grimm, Malte-Brun, and, also, Balbi and Klaproth—will do nothing useful to understand the descent of peoples, unless it compares the language spoken by one people with the language spoken by another people, but at the same time; written language with [another] written language, but a contemporary one.91 An entire article might not suffice to reconstruct in depth the critique of Troya and his primary targets, who included, among others, the linguists Julius Klaproth (1783–1835), Johann-Christoph Adelung (1732–1806), and Friedrich Adelung (1768–1843), the geographer Conrad De Malte-Brun (1775–1826), and, most of all, Adriano Balbi and his ethnographic atlases.92 In his argument, Troya pointed out the flaws in the linguistic heuristic process itself, which mainly relied on the diachronic comparison of modern and ancient idioms without any grounding in reliable sources. As such, these supposed linguistic genealogies were reconstructed by relying on kinships that seemed to assume dubious homophonies and etymologies rather than demonstrating a proper philological examination of written documents. A parallel attack was waged against the Jamaican-born physiologist and ethnographer William Frédéric Edwards (1777–1823). Edwards was a prominent figure in the birth and institutionalization of anthropology in nineteenthcentury France, and Troya could have possibly known him through the works and articles of Amédée Thierry (1797–1873).93 In this case, also, Troya criticizes a methodology that, in order to overcome the shortage of osteological evidence from the past, purports to fill such an irreparable gap by relying on the craniological and anthropometric examination of the current ‘varieties.’ By doing so, he seems to criticize the method employed by authors like Micali and, as we will see, Romagnosi (though with very different purposes) in their craniological and typological examination of ancient iconography. Such a cautious—almost skeptical—approach to the emerging linguistics and physical anthropology did not, however, mean that the Neapolitan historian was completely uninterested in the ethnographic aspect of the Lombard Question (so long as it was grounded in the analysis of written documents). In Della condizione de’ Romani vinti da’ Longobardi (1841), Troya devoted, for example, several paragraphs to the analysis of the diverse ethnic pattern of the so-called ‘Lombards.’ The invading group, though characterized by the Lombard majority, was far from being examined as a compact ethnic ‘monolith.’ Rather, it resembled a conglomeration of tribes

The ‘Lombard Question’  101 and groups gathered along the path to Italy, and included non-Germanic populations like the Sarmatians and (in the author’s opinion) the Gepids.94 Most of all, Troya seemed the first to acknowledge that, as time went by, late sixth- and seventh-century ‘Lombards’ included a considerable number of former imperial ‘Roman’ and ‘Greek’ troops.95 Also, Troya took into account the progressive inclusion of the Romano-Italics into the Lombard ‘people,’ given the capacity of the Roman civilization to attract and influence the invading barbarians. However, following in the footsteps of Manzoni, Troya also stated that the ‘fusion’ of Romano-Italics and Lombards into new people was a relatively late phenomenon, reaching its apex almost three centuries after the end of the Lombard Kingdom in the eleventh century with the blossoming of the comuni.96 Therefore, postdating the fusion from the eighth to the eleventh century makes it evident that, although further complicating and actually softening the dichotomy of the ‘two nations,’ the core of the Neo-Guelph apologetics—that is, the brutality of Lombard rule and the redeeming role of the pope—remained intact. ‘The inextinguishable power of race,’ or the permanence of racial traits If Troya included some brief digressions on the ethnic background of the Lombards and their eventual naturalization within the broader ‘Italian’ population, Capponi made a thorough and detailed ethnographic discussion of the Italian (and European) antiquities, with a particular focus on the persistence of particular racial traits throughout the millennia. And this increasing ‘racial dimension’ of the Lombard Question with Capponi—as Artifoni defines it—seemed perfectly aligned with the ongoing trends of the Italian and European cultures of the time.97 If we quickly glance at the timeline of the Lettere al prof. Pietro Capei sulla dominazione dei Longobardi in Italia, we note that they developed in the arch of fifteen years, from 1844 to 1859.98 These decades experienced a dramatic shift of interest toward linguistics, and especially physical anthropology, before the institutionalization of the latter discipline in the late 1860s.99 Therefore, the interest and epistemological legitimation of ethnology should be no surprise, although it was always adopted by Capponi with a bit of caution and doubt, and combined with written documentation as the only reliable source. For example, in his first letters of 1844, Capponi’s discussion of the origin of the Lombards already disclosed a reconstruction of their ethnogenesis which seemed influenced by the findings of comparative linguistics: First of all, I do not want to suggest a completely different origin [of the Lombards] if we think that the Goths, as well as the first invaders, came directly from Asia (as Troya persuasively maintains). We know for certain that the Lombards, a people undoubtedly from the north, settled in the Baltic area five centuries before they invaded Italy. I am

102  The ‘Lombard Question’ aware that Scandinavia, where they came from—at least if we believe Paul the Deacon—has traditions which appear more Asian than those that are found among the Germanic peoples; and in all of them [the Germanic peoples] I can observe a vein of Eastern blood which is by far more immediate and direct than the one that flew [to Italy] by sea from the Pelasgians and the Ausones. For my part, I do believe in the inextinguishable power of race in the qualities of peoples; and I think that ethnology should be the foundation of history. On the other hand, I am aware that it is almost impossible to distinguish the origins of those races which, by chasing and fighting each other, often changed location and even name; and the explanations provided by the examination of languages and traditions have been so far quite unsatisfactory.100 Such an adhesion, however, to the new linguistic theories, and therefore to the alleged Asiatic origins of the Germanic populations, did not prevent Capponi from expressing doubts about the feasibility of reconstructing the ethnic map of Europe by resorting solely to the analysis of languages and names.101 What he, on the other hand, considered to be confirmed by reliable ancient sources concerning the Lombards was their extreme primitiveness in contrast to not only to the Romans, but also to the other Germanic populations. For Capponi, such a dramatic civilizational gap along with the retention of their ancestral pagan cults may have caused the hostility and their lasting separation from the outnumbering Catholic Romano-Italics.102 In fact, alongside the other neo-Guelph authors, Capponi argued for a continued segregation between the two ethnicities. Yet, he also hypothesized the gradual intermingling of the two ethnicities, which the Frankish conquest had likely accelerated since it completed a process already set in motion by the progressive integration of the Lombards in the broader and more advanced Romano-Italic socio-economic structure.103 In spite of this stance, which nuanced the rigid dichotomy of the ‘two nations’ established by Manzoni, Capponi’s work was characterized—quite paradoxically to a modern eye—by an axiomatic belief in the persistence of racial traits in a given population. Such a focus on ‘the inextinguishable power of race in the qualities of peoples’ would induce Capponi to set aside the theme of the conquest and legislation to increasingly delve into a thorough ethnographic mapping of Europe by tracing an intimate continuity between modern nationalities and their respective ancestors. When addressing, for example, the Lombards and the ancient testimonies concerning their customs and ‘character,’ Capponi did not hesitate to establish a parallel with the national character of their alleged heirs—the modern Scandinavians—as the proof of the continuity of a ‘temperament’ of the Germanic ‘race’ throughout the millennia.104 Yet, the persistence of these ‘moral’ peculiarities of Germanic ‘character’ was not confined to the mere realm of collective manners, virtues, or vices. Rather, it was perceived as being first and foremost the cause of the philosophical, religious, and political

The ‘Lombard Question’  103 divergence between the two main ‘races’ of Western Europe: the ‘Germanic’ race and the ‘Latin’ race. For example, in illustrating the Germanic ‘race’ (and their main representatives, the Germans), Capponi unleashed his tirades against the sectarianism and fragmentation of Protestantism, praising instead the unity of Catholicism, the pure ‘expression’ of inborn harmony, and equilibrium of the ‘great Latin race.’105 In short, according to Capponi, Romano-Lombard relations appear nothing more than a chapter in a long-lasting broader history of the confrontation between Latins and Germanics in Europe, extending to the whole of Western culture. Such a racialized vision of the alterity of the Germanics seemed to reinforce the idea of a never-ending struggle between two ‘elements’—the Germanic and the Latin—thus ennobling Italian nationalism as the natural heir (and champion) of this long-standing confrontation. Yet, Capponi’s belief in the persistence of racial peculiarities in the European peoples did not only serve the Latino-Germanic opposition: it also served to embed and explain the Lombard invasion in the longer racial history of Italy. This reconstruction made him fully conversant with the debate concerning the ethno-history of Italy, and allowed him to reconnect the Middle Ages to the broader study of the Italic antiquities. This aspect further complicates our understanding of the Lombard Question as framed only within the Germano-Latin relations of the early Middle Ages. In the third Lettera (1859), one of the catalysts of the Lombard invasion was constituted by the broader ethnic dynamics brought about by the primeval migrations as well as the incomplete Romanization of the Peninsula.106 Even at the onset of the Lombard invasion in the second half of the sixth century CE—as maintained by Capponi—Italy was far from being ethnically homogeneous. On the contrary, while in the central and southern portions of the Peninsula, the similar Etruscan, Latin, and Greek ‘stocks’ had coalesced into a compact Roman ‘block,’ in the Po valley and a consistent Celtic population persisted especially in its rural areas.107 And it was this ethnic Celtic substratum that, as Capponi concludes, due to a ‘certain affinity of races’ facilitated the invasion of the Lombards and eventually mingled with them.108 In short, Capponi contextualized the Lombard invasion in the broader racial dialectics between the (peninsular) Pelasgian and the (northern) Celtic ‘elements,’ dating back to the pre-Roman, and even the prehistoric age. For Capponi, at the origins of the Italic population stood the two migratory fluxes which, though both originating from the Eurasian plateau—the ‘cradle of civilization’—ended up taking two different paths: a northern continental one, for the inhabitants of the Po valley, and a Middle Eastern and Mediterranean one, for the ‘Pelasgian stock.’109 The Lombard invasion was therefore represented as being crucially affected by the pre-existing ethnic pattern— and, we might add, plurality—of pre-Roman Italy for the role played by the ethnic Celtic substratum in facilitating the penetration of the Lombards in the Peninsula. Actually, upon closer scrutiny, it appears evident that, for Capponi, the Lombard invasion was not only a part of the Romano-Germanic

104  The ‘Lombard Question’ encounter, or of the conflict between Latin and Germanic cultures. Rather, it was one of the last episodes of what might be called the Indo-European migration theory.110 Although it seems that Capponi never mentioned the term Indo-European, nor did he fully concur with the findings of comparative linguistics, it is striking to note both the similarities and the references to the ethnolinguistic theories supporting a common Eurasian migratory epicenter (as well as a privileged ‘Indo-Germanic’ kinship). In particular, he credited modern ‘German’ religious ‘spirit’ to an alleged Indian ‘pantheism.’ On the other hand, with respect to the German philosophical tradition, Capponi attributed its ‘transcendental genius’ to its ‘Oriental’ heritage having been insufficiently ‘purged’ by the Greek ‘intellect.’111 In short, it is possible to place Capponi at the intersection of both older and newer trends in the ethnographic mapping of Italy. The idea of the persistence of the substratum, and, therefore, of an ethnic plurality of Italy places him in the current of that eighteenth-century anti-Roman Etruscology of figures like Vico, Denina, Micali (whom he surely knew through another of Vieusseux’s journal, the Antologia), which was revived in the pages of the Archivio Storico Italiano by the philologist Giovanni Galvani (1806– 1873).112 The presence of another traditional theme—that of the Pelasgians, seen as the forefathers of the Italian ‘race’—places him in an even broader tradition of ‘primacy’ spanning from Vico to Cuoco and, more recently, to Gioberti and the anthropological research of Giustiniano Nicolucci. Importantly, Capponi, despite his defense of the superior Pelasgian ‘genius,’ never concurred with the theory of the Antiqua Sapientia Italica or, in other words, the Italic superiority vis-à-vis the Greek world.113 Lastly, the idea of a North-South dichotomy as explained through the analysis of the Eurasian migratory patterns draws a curious parallel with the research of Giacomo Durando, which will be examined in Chapter 5. In short, Capponi’s work exemplifies how the theme of razza would gradually acquire a paramount role in a debate—such as the Questione Longobarda—which was originally dominated by other questions and methodologies. This shift toward ethnology does not constitute a peculiarity of the debate surrounding the Lombards, but represents a common trend in the Italian, and more broadly the European debate following the 1830s. From this perspective, it is necessary to set aside the different migratory and ethno-genetic theories to understand what ‘race’ ultimately meant for the main authors of the Questione. The focus will be on the different understandings, on their possible cohabitations, and, most of all, their relationship with the idea of nation.

Conclusions: notable continuities, a significant absence…and a great conundrum In reading the main authors of the Lombard Question, the term razza (pl. razze) is mentioned with frequency; note that Manzoni himself introduced

The ‘Lombard Question’  105 the conflict between ‘Italians’ and Lombards as a struggle of ‘two races.’ Troya and Capponi echoed him in several passages, and developed the debate surrounding the Lombards by delving into the characteristics and the origins of the respective Latin and Germanic ‘races.’ In the majority of the cases examined, the word ‘race’ seems to be a synonym of the traditional understandings of ‘lineages’ and ‘stocks.’ However, the use of ‘race’ to indicate a physical difference is notably absent: several hypotheses might be made to explain why, though they can offer no certainties. The traditional understanding of race as ‘stock’ (in Italian, stirpe), or even as connected to the idea of nation appears to be the most frequent in the authors considered. It is notable that both Manzoni and Troya seemed to suggest that ‘race’ and ‘nation’ were ordered in a sort of developmental ladder according to which, only after the establishment of political independence and its own juridical, civil, and religious institutions does a ‘race/stock’ become a ‘nation.’ For example, for Manzoni the juridical differentiation between ‘Italians’ and ‘Lombards’ prevented the legal recognition of their fusion into a single ‘nation,’ and, as a passage of Troya suggests, ‘nation’ and ‘citizenship’ were explicitly considered as synonyms.114 Another synonymous usage between razze and genti (literally ‘the populations’) appeared to reinforce the hypothesis that, for Manzoni and Troya, ‘races’ and ‘stocks’ were akin to the classical notion of the ‘natural peoples,’ or the gentes bound only by their common origin, descent, and customs, as opposed to the ‘constitutional peoples’ or populi, organized and defined by stable polities and juridical systems.115 In sum, for both Manzoni and Troya, the ‘race’ was a sort of ‘proto-nation’ (or, more accurately, a ‘pre-nation’) composed of a group of people bound by common descent, along with similar moral and cultural characteristics, but not yet organized into a stable polity or sovereign body. Capponi reinforces the idea of the biological transmission of cultural, psycho-moral and even cognitive traits as profoundly affected by ‘the inextinguishable power of race in the qualities of people.’116 The lack of any reference to race as a physical ‘type’ or ‘variety’ seems to soften the ‘biological’ connotations of Capponi’s understanding of the term. Artifoni argues, for example, that: …from an overall reading of Capponi's writings, the notion of race seems to be understood in quite a weak sense, which refers to a sort of character and mindset of the peoples rather than to a strictly biological connotation of the term. This aspect should therefore caution us against a simplistic transposition of our modern concerns about the vocabulary of that time, where the word race seems sometimes used as a sort of metaphor for cultural attitudes and mindsets.117 In other words, as Artifoni seems to suggest, the absence in Capponi’s text of any reference to phenotypical or anthropometric notions of race should prevent us from projecting onto the early nineteenth century our

106  The ‘Lombard Question’ categories—and ‘discomforts’—with the ‘physiological’ dimension of the late nineteenth- and twentieth-century ‘scientific’ racism. While one can concur with Artifoni’s invitation to avoid the pitfalls of presentism, to conclude that Capponi’s understanding of race is biologically ‘weak’ due to lack of any specific ‘biological connotation’ is debatable. Capponi suggests, instead, that race consists of a set of inheritable and transmissible traits which profoundly shape the identity of populations: against this backdrop, the ‘moral’ is by no means less ‘biological’ than the ‘physical’ dimension of the human being (and, if we may add, such a distinction appears particularly arbitrary when examining Romantic or even Positivist intellectuals).118 When it comes, in fact, to defining those ‘races’ migrating across primeval Eurasia, both Capponi and Troya distinguish them according to their linguistic affiliation. In this discursive context, biological and linguistic derivations are associated, and accordingly, ‘race’ subsumes both ‘language’ and ‘blood.’ According to this point of view, there were ancestral ‘races’ of Europe descending from a common Asiatic linguistic progenitor, as well as ‘Germanic races’ or populations ‘of pure Germanic blood.’119 This tendency to conflate linguistic and physical descent—the ‘homology’ between language and descent—seems, after all, perfectly in line with the theories dominating the ethnology of the age of Romanticism. During this period, linguistic communities were assumed to be ‘biological’ races, and ‘race’ acted—as Richard McMahon has observed—as a ‘conceptual glue,’ bonding together language, culture, blood, physical traits, psychology, and nationality. This intimate connection between an ethnocultural formation and biological descent in the understanding of the term race would last at least until the ‘divorce’ between ethnology and physical anthropology and the definitive affirmation of the latter in the late 1850s (in spite of the fact that positivist anthropology would complicate and, in the long run, re-interpret such a kinship).120 One notable absence in the authors examined here appears to be the understanding of ‘race’ as a set of common and inheritable physical traits despite its growing diffusion, especially from the 1830s onward—that is, in the same temporal arch in which the Questione Longobarda unfolded. Neither Capponi nor Troya (and, needless to say, Manzoni) seems to employ the notions of race as a physical ‘type’ or ‘variety’ in their descriptions of the main ‘races’ of Italy and Europe in general. While Micali, Romagnosi, and Cattaneo would adopt in the very same years the findings of physical anthropology to shed light on the debate surrounding Italic and European antiquities, the authors of the Lombard Question—who were first and foremost men with a literary, historical, and juridical educational background—seemed to completely ignore the new anthropological disciplines. This apparent omission raises, as expected, several questions: did these authors ignore physical anthropology, or did they simply deem it irrelevant for their analysis, or, more broadly, for the entire historical research?

The ‘Lombard Question’  107 The only certain testimony of a certain familiarity with the natural history of man can be found in a letter of Troya, in which he criticizes the French anthropologist Edwards for his pretension to ‘distinguish the ancient races from their modern physical varieties’ (which was, essentially, the method adopted by Micali and, as we will see, by Romagnosi).121 The mention of Edwards and, among other notable scholars, of Balbi, demonstrates that Troya knew the anthropological classifications of human species, and was also capable of approaching their theories with their very same terminology (e.g. ‘variety’ in indicating the different pigmentations, cranial shapes, and somatic traits). However, it is not clear why these authors seem to not adopt any of the findings and methods of physical anthropology, and we must, therefore, formulate some hypotheses. The first reason might reside in the period examined by the debate, the Middle Ages, which surely did not experience the origins of the Italians, and therefore, the identification of a primeval Italian ancestor. In other words, the fact that the Lombard Question was not concerned with the issue of the autochthony of the Italians might have prevented the authors from employing natural history in the ethnohistorical research. It is worth remembering that even the most stringent adherents to the theory of Romano-Lombard segregation like Manzoni conceded the eventual ‘fusion’ of the two ethnicities: such an aspect might have further complicated the thesis of peculiar physical traits or ‘types’ (especially in a cultural tradition which appeared to disregard typological racialism and its tenets regarding the persistence of a primitive type in a given ethnicity). Most of all, it is necessary to consider that the Lombard Question revolved around the analysis of the political and civil institutions of the early Middle Ages, as well as the culture of the respective ethnicities: again, the analysis of ‘types’ or ‘varieties’ that eventually intermingled was likely irrelevant to the analysis of the juridical technicalities of the ‘right of conquest.’ This last consideration may also lead us to consider that all the authors examined here seem to outspokenly prefer historiography to the other disciplines. Again, Troya’s negative remarks about the uselessness of the linguistic analyses of the school ‘of the Adelung’ may stand as evidence of this skepticism. Furthermore, a general diffidence toward the migration theories of comparative linguistics, and therefore of scholars like Christoph Adelung, who by establishing a direct filiation of the ethnolinguistic descent of the Germanic cultures from India was perceived by Italian authors as marginalizing the centrality of the classical world as the medium between the first Asian civilizations and the Western culture.122 Accordingly, there appears to be a general distrust for those theories which potentially undermined the idea of an Italian ‘primacy’ in the broader European civilizational process, and all that surrounded it, ranging from the Pelasgians and the ‘Ancient Italic Wisdom’ and extending to the Greco-Roman world and Roman Catholicism. Furthermore, the defense of the ‘primacy’ of Italy as the Catholic nation par excellence—and, therefore, of the authority of the Catholic tradition—can also explain the indifference (if not the proper suspicion) of the Neo-Guelph

108  The ‘Lombard Question’ intellectuals toward physical anthropology. As noted, the Catholic clergy was alarmed by the attacks waged by the natural history of man to the authority of the Bible, and, specifically, to the creationist and monogenist scheme of the Book of Genesis (not to mention the blatant polygenist and anti-clerical stances of some influential anthropologists and naturalists).123 It is, therefore, not unlikely that these ‘fervid Catholics,’ as Benedetto Croce labeled them, abstained from delving into the study of those ‘types,’ ‘varieties,’ and ‘races’ which may have provoked some problematic reactions in their public (not to mention the civil and ecclesiastic authorities). However, as we will see, some of these neo-Guelph intellectuals would manage to make the modern taxonomies of man more palatable to Catholic public.124 In conclusion, this overview of the Lombard Question has shown that, well into the 1840s and 1850s, the Italian cultural panorama was characterized by multiple ideas of race, and that the understanding of race as a physical marker—whether in the form of ‘variety’ or ‘type’—was far from the dominant one. This ‘coexistence of meanings,’ as I would label it, does not seem to be an Italian peculiarity, but rather aligns perfectly with the broader trend of European ethnographic disciplines, gradually expanding from linguistics to physical anthropology. The rigid adherence to the historiographical method of the authors here examined, and therefore their (relative) resistance to new disciplines can be explained in the light of their cultural upbringing, privileging humanities, as well as nationalist and even religious concerns. The primacy of the ‘letters’ went hand in hand with the defense of the Italian classical tradition, and thus a diffidence toward the adoption of the natural history of man in the examination of the national past. This being said, these positions, although significant—and therefore worthy of a future investigation on the dialectics between Roman Catholicism and racialism in modern Italy—were not unanimously shared by the entirety of the coeval Italian cultural and political spectrum. Many were instead extremely interested in the new ethnographic trends. One case was represented by Giuseppe Micali who, as we have seen, although moving in the tradition of eighteenth-century antiquarianism, did not refrain from using the concept of racial type in his argumentation. Other prominent scholars like Giandomenico Romagnosi and Carlo Cattaneo would, in their investigation into Italic antiquities, resort extensively to physical anthropology and linguistics. In their research, however, the traditional conflation of ‘language’ with ‘blood’ was severely questioned, and they employed racial taxonomies against the idea of racially and culturally ‘pure’ national genealogies. In the long run, the findings of the new linguistics and anthropological disciplines would be eventually incorporated and re-adapted to a Catholic (and nationalist) narrative. The echoes from this process of mutual influence and hybridization can be detected in the physical anthropology of the decades to come.

The ‘Lombard Question’  109

Notes 1 Another prominent figure of the Questione Longobarda—the statesman and scholar Cesare Balbo (1789–1853)—will be examined in Chapter 5 in relation to other notable figures of Catholic liberalism. 2 I also examined Balbo in discussant with Gioberti and his ethnographic theories and nation-building grand design. See Chapter 5 of the present work. 3 For the reasons for Benedetto Croce’s assessment about the superior quality and significance of Neo-Gueph ‘school,’ see Benedetto Croce, Storia della storiografia italiana nel secolo decimonono (Bari: Laterza, 1947), 1: 161–177. 4 Alessandro Manzoni, Adelchi: tragedia di A. Manzoni, con un Discorso sur alcuni punti della storia longobardica in Italia (Milan: Ferrario, 1822), 196. 5 Francesco Artifoni, “Le questioni longobarde. Osservazioni su alcuni testi del primo Ottocento storiografico italiano,” Mélanges de L’Ecole française de Rome 119, no. 2 (2007): 299. 6 Ian Wood, The Modern Origins of the Early Middle Ages (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013), 119. 7 Alberto M. Banti, “Le invasioni barbariche alle origini delle nazioni,” in Immagini della nazione nell’Italia del Risorgimento, eds. Alberto M. Banti and Roberto Bizzocchi (Rome: Carocci, 2002), 25. 8 Banti, ibid., 25. 9 Banti, ibid., 26–27. 10 On Boulainvilliers and Montlosier, see Martin Thom, Republics, Nations, and Tribes (London: Verso, 1995), 230–233, 288–290, 303; on the ‘racialization’ of the French estate system in the eighteenth century, see Wood, The Modern Origins of the Early Middle Ages, 94; Banti, “Le invasioni barbariche alle origini delle nazioni,” 25, 28–29, 34. Arthur De Gobineau (1816–1862) would eventually re-interpret the conflict opposing Romano-Gauls to Frankish in his work on the inequality of human races; see George Mosse, Towards the Final Solution: A History of European Racism (New York: Fertig, 1978), 52–55; Wood, The Modern Origins of the Early Middle Ages, 104–106; Francisco Bethencourt, Racisms: From the Crusades to the Twentieth Century (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2013), 280–283. 11 Banti, “Le invasioni barbariche alle origini delle nazioni,” 34. 12 Banti, ibid., 34. Thierry, however, maintained that original physical and moral traits could persist. For example, in Sur l’histoire d’Ecosse (1824), he argues that ‘the physical and moral constitution of people depends more on the descent to which they belong rather than the influence of climate in which they fortuitously live.’ See Banti, ibid., 36. 13 Banti, “Le invasioni barbariche alle origini delle nazioni,” 37. 14 Banti, ibid., 39. 15 Banti, ibid. 16 Wood, The Modern Origins of the Early Middle Ages, xi; Patrick J. Geary, The Myth of Nations: The Medieval Origins of Europe (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2003), 34. For the Italian antiquarian debate surrounding the ‘rupture’ represented by the early Middle Ages and the fortune of Muratori’s interpretation, see Ilaria Porciani, L’ «Archivio Storico Italiano». Organizzazione della ricerca ed egemonia moderata nel Risorgimento (Florence: Olschki, 1979), 36, 52, 115, 135. 17 Dario Mantovani, “Le vocazioni del ‘Discorso,’” in Alessandro Manzoni, Discorso sopra alcuni punti della storia Longobardica in Italia. Edizione Nazionale ed Europea delle opere di Alessandro Manzoni, vol. 5, eds. Dario Mantovani and Isabella Becherucci (Milan: Centro Nazionale Studi Manzoniani, 2005), xxi–xxii.

110  The ‘Lombard Question’ 18 Gino Capponi, “Lettere al prof. Pietro Capei sulla dominazione dei Longobardi in Italia, Lettera Prima,” originally published as “Sulla dominazione dei Longobardi in Italia. Lettera 1a,” Archivio Storico Italiano, Appendix vol. 1 (1842–1844): 183–216, repr. in Gino Capponi, Scritti editi e inediti di Gino Capponi, ed. Marco Tabarrini, (Florence: Barbera, 1877), 1: 54–94. The reference is, in particular, to page 68. 19 Giuseppe Perta, “Sismondi, Pirenne e la periodizzazione del Medioevo. Il fuoco Greco e il primato teconologico degli armamenti,” in Sismondi e la nuova Italia. Atti del Convegno di Studi Firenze, Pescia, Pisa, 9–11 giugno 2010, eds. Letizia Pagliai and Francesca Sofia (Florence: Edizioni Polistampa) 57–59; Thom, Republics, Nations, and Tribes, 87–184. 20 Sebastiano Timpanaro, Classicismo e Illuminismo nell’Ottocento italiano. Testo critico con aggiunta di saggi e annotazioni autografe, ed. Corrado Pestelli, pref. Gino Tellini (Florence: Le lettere, 2011) 331–333. 21 Borja Vilallonga, “The Theoretical Origins of Catholic Nationalism in Nineteenth- Century Europe,” Modern Intellectual History 11, no. 2 (2014): 315; Thom, Republics, Nations, and Tribes, 126–130. 22 Timpanaro, Classicismo e Illuminismo nell’Ottocento italiano, 338; Thom, Republics, Nations, and Tribes, 1, 131; Wood, The Modern Origins of the Early Middle Ages, xi. 23 Thom, Republics, Nations, and Tribes, 104, 119. 24 Thom, ibid., 207. 25 Thom, ibid., 215–225. Yet, as McMahon has shown, the relationship between nationalism and race was (and is) more complex than expected, because many ethno-racial groupings, such as Latins, Celts, Germanics, Slavs, are inherently transnational, embracing different nation-states. See Richard McMahon, The Races of Europe: Construction of the National Identities in Social Sciences, 1839–1939 (London: Palgrave McMillan, 2016), 4. 26 On Classicism in Italy, see Mario Manfredi, “La ricezione di Sismondi nella cultura italiana della Restaurazione,” in Sismondi e la nuova Italia, 72–73. On the resistance against Indo-European studies in the cultural debate of the Peninsula, see Leon Poliakov, The Aryan Myth: A History of Racist and Nationalist Ideas in Europe (New York: Basic Books, 1974), 66–69; Thom, Republics, Nations, and Tribes, 275–277; De Donno, Italian Orientalism: Nationhood, Cosmopolitanism, and the Cultural Politics of Identity (Oxford: Peter Lang, 2019), 23–60. 27 Timpanaro, Classicismo e Illuminismo nell’Ottocento italiano, 339–341; Thom, Republics, Nations, and Tribes, 273–277. 28 Manfredi, “La ricezione di Sismondi nella cultura italiana della Restaurazione,” 72–73; Thom, Republics, Nations, and Tribes, 275–277. On Manzoni’s refutation of the new comparative linguistics, see Maurizio Dardano, “Sulla linguistica di Manzoni: i rapporti con i Grammariens Philosophes,” in L’identità italiana ed europea tra Sette e Ottocento, eds. Anna Ascenzi e Laura Melosi (Florence: Olski, 2008), 84–90. 29 Sebastiano Timpanaro, Sulla linguistica dell’Ottocento (Bologna: Il Mulino, 2005), 110–115. 30 Carlo Troya a Cesare Balbo, 14 lettera, Napoli, 31 del 1833, repr. Carlo Troya, Della civile condizione dei romani vinti dai longobardi e altre quistioni storiche. Lettere inedite di Carlo Troya e Cesare Balbo con prefazione di Enrico Mandarini, ed. Enrico Mandarini (Naples: Tipografia degli Accattoncelli, 1869), 120–121; Capponi, “Lettere al prof. Pietro Capei sulla dominazione dei Longobardi in Italia. Lettera Seconda,” originally published as “Sulla dominazione dei Longobardi in Italia. Lettera seconda,” Archivio Storico Italiano, Appendix vol. 1 (1842–1844): 216–238, repr. Capponi, Scritti editi e inediti di Gino Capponi, 1: 95–125. The reference is, in particular, to page 122.

The ‘Lombard Question’  111 31 Although, as we know today, the ‘rupture’ between Late Antiquity and the early Middle Ages represented by the Germanic migrations and invasions was nuanced by the work of Henri Pirenne, who on the contrary identified in the Arab conquest of the Mediterranean basin the real demise of the Romano-Byzantine world in the West and the beginning of the Middle Ages. See Perta, “Sismondi, Pirenne e la periodizzazione del Medioevo,” 59–61. 32 For an overview of the debate in the Risorgimento, Mauro Moretti and Ilaria Porciani, “Italy’s Various Middle Ages,” in The Uses of the Middle Ages in Modern European States: History, Nationhood, and the Search for Origins, eds. Robert J.W. Evans and Guy P. Marchal (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2011), 183–190. 33 Moretti and Porciani, “Italy’s Various Middle Ages,” 184–185. 34 Artifoni, “Le questioni longobarde,” 304. 35 Giovanni Tabacco, “Manzoni e la Questione Longobarda,” in Manzoni e l’idea di letteratura: atti del convegno su Alessandro Manzoni tenutosi a Torino il 5,6,7 dicembre 1985, ed. Liceo Linguistico Cadorna (Turin: Liceo Linguistico Cadorna, 1985), 52–57; Artifoni, ibid., 298. 36 That was, of course, the staple of the debate that pitted the Neo-Guelphs against the Neo-Ghibellines during the Risorgimento; see Croce, Storia della storiografia italiana nel secolo decimonono, 1: 120–207. 37 For a recent comprehensive study on Sismondi’s Histoire des républiques italiennes du moyen âge and its reception in Italy, see Letizia Pagliai and Francesca Sofia, eds., Sismondi e la nuova Italia. Atti del Convegno di Studi Firenze, Pescia, Pisa, 9–11 giugno 2010 (Florence: Edizioni Polistampa, 2011. See, also, Sismonde de Sismondi, Il carattere degli italiani, ed. Roberto Bizzocchi (Rome: Viella, 2020). On Manzoni and Sismondi, see Mantovani, “Le vocazioni del ‘Discorso,’” xv–xxvii; Becherucci, “Introduzione,” in Alessandro Manzoni, Discorso sopra alcuni punti della storia Longobardica in Italia. Edizione Nazionale ed Europea delle opere di Alessandro Manzoni, vol. 5, eds. Dario Mantovani and Isabella Becherucci (Milan: Centro Nazionale Studi Manzoniani, 2005), lxxxviii. On Manzoni’s response to Sismondi’s anti-Catholicism in Sulla morale cattolica. Osservazioni, see Paolo Prodi e Pierangelo Schiera, “Dialogo su Sismondi,” in Sismondi e la nuova Italia, 13; Mantovani, “Le vocazioni del ‘Discorso,’” xxii. On Sismondi’s positive view of the Lombards, see Wood, The Modern Origins of the Early Middle Ages, 92. 38 Croce, Storia della storiografia italiana nel secolo decimonono, 1: 120–122; Mantovani, “Le vocazioni del ‘Discorso,’” xiv. 39 Thom, Republics, Nations, and Tribes, 294. 40 Thom, ibid., 294–295. To be fair, neither Capponi had an enthusiastic view of the Papacy, although he was extremely skeptical of the removal of that institution from the political map of Italy. See Ernesto Sestan, La Firenze di Vieusseux e Capponi (Florence: Olschki, 1986), 113–120. 41 Croce, Storia della storiografia italiana nel secolo decimonono, 1: 121–122; Artifoni, “Le questioni longobarde,” 298. 42 Becherucci, “Introduzione,” lxxvi; Angelo Fabrizi, Manzoni storico e altri saggi sette-ottocenteschi (Florence: Società Editrice Fiorentina, 2004), 29. 43 Croce, ibid., 1: 155. 44 Mantovani, “Le vocazioni del ‘Discorso,’” xiv. See, also, Fabrizi, Manzoni storico e altri saggi sette-ottocenteschi, 10, 25–27. 45 Manzoni, Adelchi: tragedia di A. Manzoni, con un Discorso sur alcuni punti della storia longobardica in Italia, 170–193. Croce, Storia della storiografia italiana nel secolo decimonono, 1: 123–124; Fabrizi, Manzoni storico e altri saggi setteottocenteschi, 28; Enrico Artifoni, “Ideologia e memoria locale nella storiografia italiana sui Longobardi,” in Il futuro dei Longobardi: l’Italia e la costruzione

112  The ‘Lombard Question’

46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53

54 55 56 57 58 59

60

61

62 63 64 65 66 67

dell’Europa di Carlo Magno, eds. Carlo Bertelli e Gian Pietro Brogiolo (Milan: Skira, 2000), 220–223; Artifoni, Le questioni longobarde, 299. Manzoni excluded from his critique the antiquarians Scipione Maffei and Girolamo Tiraboschi who, unlike Muratori and Denina, argued for the segregation between RomanoItalics and Lombards, see Manzoni, Adelchi: tragedia di A. Manzoni, con un Discorso sur alcuni punti della storia longobardica in Italia, 250–253. Croce, Storia della storiografia italiana nel secolo decimonono, 1: 124–125. Artifoni, “Le questioni longobarde,” 302. Carlo Troya a Cesare Balbo, 14 lettera, Napoli, 31 del 1833, 122–123. Carlo Troya a Cesare Balbo, 14 lettera, Napoli, 31 del 1833, 136–152. Artifoni, “Ideologia e memoria locale nella storiografia italiana sui Longobardi,” 219; Artifoni, “Le questioni longobarde,” 299. Manzoni, Adelchi: tragedia di A. Manzoni, con un Discorso sur alcuni punti della storia longobardica in Italia 187. Manzoni, ibid., 203. Carlo Troya, Della condizione de’ Romani vinti da’ Longobardi e della vera lezione d’alcune parole di Paolo Diacono intorno a tale argomento (Naples: Dalla Stamperia Reale, 1841), iii–iv; Capponi, “Lettere al prof. Pietro Capei sulla dominazione dei Longobardi in Italia. Lettera Prima,” 74, 85. Mantovani, “Le vocazioni del ‘Discorso,’” xxi–xii. Mantovani, ibid., xvi. Manzoni, Adelchi: tragedia di A. Manzoni, con un Discorso sur alcuni punti della storia longobardica in Italia, 221–229. Manzoni, ibid., 197–198; Mantovani, “Le vocazioni del ‘Discorso,’” xvi–xvii. Manzoni, ibid., 223–230; Mantovani, “Le vocazioni del ‘Discorso,’” xix–xxx. On the diffusion in Italy of Friedrich Carl Von Savigny’s Geschichte des römischen Recths im Mittelalter through the Antologia between 1828 and 1832, see Mantovani, “Le vocazioni del ‘Discorso,’” xlvi–xlvii; on Manzoni’s acquaintance with Friedrich Carl Von Savigny in the house of the director of the Antologia, Giovan Pietro Vieusseux in 1827, and on the Italian translation of Savigny’s work in 1844–1845, see Mantovani, ibid., xlviii. Mantovani, ibid., xlviii–xlix. On the importance of Savigny in the debate about the origins of the Italian comuni, see Porciani, L’ «Archivio Storico Italiano», 134. On Troya’s critique of Savigny and Romagnosi, see Troya, Della condizione de’ Romani vinti da’ Longobardi, iii–iv. The ‘Lombard clemency’ is a locution by Manzoni. See Manzoni, Adelchi: tragedia di A. Manzoni, con un Discorso sur alcuni punti della storia longobardica in Italia, 251–252. On Denina’s positive judgment of the Lombards, see “Denina, Carlo.” Treccani. Enciclopedia, last accessed July 15, 2020 http://www. treccani.it/enciclopedia/carlo-denina_%28Il-Contributo-italiano-alla-storiadel-Pensiero:-Storia-e-Politica%29/. On Denina, Rivoluzioni d’Italia, see, also, Vincenzo Sorella, Storie d’Italia settecentesche: Il Delle Rivoluzioni d’Italia di Carlo Denina (Florence: Leo S. Olschki, 2007). On Troya’s ‘continuation’ of the work of Manzoni, Croce, Storia della storiografia italiana nel secolo decimonono, 1: 125; Artifoni, “Le questioni longobarde,” 301, 304. Troya, Della condizione de’ Romani vinti da’ Longobardi, lxi, ccxxvii–ccxxix. Troya, ibid., cx–cxi. Troya, ibid., lxxxviii. On Capponi and his role in the creation and direction of the Archivio, see Porciani, L’ «Archivio Storico Italiano», 38–79. Capponi, “Lettere al prof. Pietro Capei sulla dominazione dei Longobardi in Italia. Lettera Prima,” 82.

The ‘Lombard Question’  113 68 Capponi, “Lettere al prof. Pietro Capei sulla dominazione dei Longobardi in Italia. Lettera Seconda,” 96: So far, nobody has stated that all Italians were completely enslaved, that is, slaves according to the ancient Roman law, or, rather, to the milder customs of the Germanic servitude. It is very unlikely, in fact, that a population inhabiting its native soil would passively enable its total enslavement. Capponi, in effect, believed that was the very nature of the Germanic populations to prevent them to hold a vision of slavery similar to the Greek and Roman ones: The Germanic temperance converted the slave into a servant; an improvement which was never motivated by the sense of fairness of the jurists, and which was surely not the result of the laws alone, unless they had been influenced by the religious precepts and dramatic changes in customs and habits. (emphasis added)

69 70 71 72 73

74 75 76 77 78 79

80 81 82 83

See, Capponi, “Lettere al prof. Pietro Capei sulla dominazione dei Longobardi in Italia. Lettera Prima,” 88. Capponi, ibid., 84. Capponi, “Lettere al prof. Pietro Capei sulla dominazione dei Longobardi in Italia. Lettera Seconda,” 95–102, 106. Manzoni, Adelchi: tragedia di A. Manzoni, con un Discorso sur alcuni punti della storia longobardica in Italia 190–193 (emphasis added). Mantovani, “Le vocazioni del ‘Discorso,’” liv. Manzoni, Adelchi: tragedia di A. Manzoni, con un Discorso sur alcuni punti della storia longobardica in Italia, 190–193. It is worthy to remember, in fact, that Manzoni acknowledged that, in the long run, after the Frankish defeat of the Lombards, ‘Italians’ and Lombards eventually mixed. See Banti, “Le invasioni barbariche alle origini delle nazioni,” 37. Troya, Della condizione de’ Romani vinti da’ Longobardi, cxciii–cxciv; ccxlv–ccxlviii. Carlo Troya a Cesare Balbo, 14 lettera, Napoli, 31 del 1833, 122–123. Mantovani, “Le vocazioni del ‘Discorso,’” lvii. Mantovani, ibid., lii. Mantovani, ibid., lii–liii. On the relationship between nationality and ethnic belonging as elaborated by nationalism, I refer to the concept of ‘fictive ethnicity’ in Etienne Balibar; see Etienne Balibar and Immanuel Wallerstein, Race, Nation, Class: Ambiguous Identities (London: Verso, 1991), 98. Geary, The Myth of Nations, 63–64, 141–150. Mantovani, “Le vocazioni del ‘Discorso,’” lii. Geary, The Myth of Nations, 19–21, 141–150. See Carlo Cattaneo, “Della conquista dell’Inghilterra pei Normanni,” originally published in Il Politecnico 2, no. 12 (Dicembre 1839), 536–582, repr. Carlo Cattaneo, Opere Scelte, vol. 2, Milano e l’Europa. Scritti 1839–1846, ed. Delia Castelnuovo-Frigessi (Turin: Einaudi, 1972), 4–53. This article was a review of Augustin Thierry’s Histoire de la conquête d’Angleterre par les Normands, de ses causes et de ses suites jusqu’a nos jours en Angleterre, en Ecosse, en Irlande et sur le Continent (1825). See, also, for a previous article, Cattaneo, “Del nesso tra la lingua valaca e l’italiana,” originally published as “Nesso della nazione e della lingua valacca con l’italiana,” in Annali Universali di Statistica, Economia pubblica, Storia, Viaggi e Commercio 52, no. 155 (May 1837) 129–157, repr. Cattaneo, Opere Scelte, vol. 1, Industria e scienza nuova. Scritti 1833–1839, ed. Delia

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84 85 86 87 88

89

90 91

92 93

94

95 96 97 98

Castelnuovo-Frigessi (Turin: Einaudi, 1972), 274–303. See, also, Franco Della Peruta, Carlo Cattaneo politico (Milan: Franco Angeli, 2001), 35. Artifoni, “Le questioni longobarde,” 304. Artifoni, ibid., 302. Manzoni, Adelchi: tragedia di A. Manzoni, con un Discorso sur alcuni punti della storia longobardica in Italia, 196, 281. Mantovani, “Le vocazioni del ‘Discorso,’” xli. Alessandro Manzoni, “Discorso sopra alcuni punti di storia longobardica in Italia,” in Alessandro Manzoni, Opere Varie (Milan: Redaelli, 1845), repr. Alessandro Manzoni, Opere di Alessandro Manzoni, vol. 4., Scritti storici e politici, bk. 2, ed. Luca Badini-Confalonieri (Turin: UTET, 2012), 99–300. There is no evidence, in fact, of a substantial change or development of Manzoni’s racialization of the Romano-Lombard conflict. The only novelty resides, if it may be worthy of note, in the usage of the adjective etnico in describing that Lombard legislation which, unlike the Frankish one, was meant only for the Lombards: see Manzoni, “Discorso sopra alcuni punti di storia longobardica in Italia,” 221. Troya would restate his reservations about comparative linguistics, and, in particular, the theory of an Indian derivation of the European languages, as well as of the greater antiquity of the Vedas in his monumental monograph about medieval Italy. See Carlo Troya, Storia d’Italia nel medio-evo, vol. 1, bk. 3 (Naples: Tipografia del Tasso, 1839), 1219–1223; 1327–1330. Carlo Troya a Cesare Balbo, 14 lettera, Napoli, 31 del 1833, 122–123 (emphasis added). Troya, ibid. (emphasis added). It has so far been impossible to find information on the other author—‘Lombard’—quoted together with William Frederic Edwards. Unfortunately, Troya does not provide any information about this scholar, and the same encyclopedia or dictionaries of anthropology do not report any Lombard who allegedly lived at the time of this epistolary exchange. Troya, ibid., 123–124. Adriano Balbi argued that linguistics and ethnography were essentially the same discipline; see Adriano Balbi, Introduction a l’Atlas Ethnographique du Globe (A Paris: chez Rey et Gravier, Libraires, 1826), 61. On William Frédéric Edwards, see Gérald Gaillard, The Routledge Dictionary of Anthropologists (London: Routledge 2004), 26; Marie-France Piguet, “Observation et histoire: Race chez Amédée Thierry et William F. Edwards,” L’Homme 153 (Jan-Mar. 2000): 93–105; Hannah F. Augstein, “From the land of the Bible to the Caucasus and beyond,” in Race, Science and Medicine, 1700–1960, eds. Waltraud Ernst and Bernard Harris (London: Routledge, 1999), 58–79; Carole Reynaud-Paligot, “Construction and Circulation of the Notion ‘Race’ in the Nineteenth Century,” in The Invention of Race: Scientific and Popular Representations, eds. Nicolas Bancel, Thomas David, and Dominic Thomas (London: Routledge, 2014), 87–99. On Troya’s curious ‘de-Germanization’ of the Goths because of their alleged lack of the wergild, see Croce, Storia della storiografia italiana nel secolo decimonono, 1: 128. Croce refers, in particular, to Troya, Storia d’Italia nel Medioevo, vol. 2, bk. 1 (Naples: Stamperia Reale, 1844), 513–515. This vision of the Goths as non-Germanic populations is also traceable in Carlo Troya a Cesare Balbo, 14 lettera, Napoli, 31 del 1833, 122–123. Troya, Della condizione de’ Romani vinti da’ Longobardi, cx–cxi. Troya, ibid., ccccii–cccciii. Artifoni, “Le questioni longobarde,” 302. The first two letters were originally published in the Archivio Storico Italiano, Appendix vol. 1 (1842–1844): 183–238, while the three last ones in the Archivio Storico Italiano, 10, no. 2 (1859): 3–59. See Artifoni, “Le questioni longobarde,” 302.

The ‘Lombard Question’  115 99 On the first teaching of anthropology in nineteenth-century Italy and the institutionalization of the discipline, see Sandra Puccini, ed., L’uomo e gli uomini. Scritti antropologici italiani dell’Ottocento (Rome: CISU, 1991), 4–65; Maria S. Quine, “Making Italians: Aryanism and Anthropology in Italy during the Risorgimento,” in Crafting Humans: From Genesis to Eugenics and Beyond, ed. Marius Turda (Gottingen: V&R Unipress, 2013), 127–152; McMahon, The Races of Europe, 49–50. 100 Capponi, “Lettere al prof. Pietro Capei sulla dominazione dei Longobardi in Italia. Lettera Prima,” 57 (emphasis added). Interestingly, while the linguist and philologist Giovenale Vegezzi-Ruscalla has been credited with the ‘official’ coinage of the term etnologia (‘ethnology’), Capponi here seems to adopt the term in 1844—almost fifteen years before. As for VegezziRuscalla’s coinage of this neologism in Italian language, see Puccini, L’uomo e gli uomini, 54–55. 101 Capponi, “Lettere al prof. Pietro Capei sulla dominazione dei Longobardi in Italia. Lettera Prima,” 62: The names [here Capponi refers more specifically to the ethnonyms] do not always accurately testify to the origin of the peoples, since writers, by misspelling the foreign words, often translate those unknown terms with more common ones. On the other hand, it is certain that people themselves have often changed their denominations by, taking, for example, the name of those tribes which from time to time would lead them in the conquests. Paul the Deacon maintains that the Winnili Lombards belonged to the Germanic stock and that they originated from a Scandinavian island, […] which faces the Baltic sea at the mouth of the Elba and Vistula rivers. (emphasis added) Again, regarding the difficult task of ascertaining the descent of ancient people absent written documents, and the case of the Franks and their diverse ethnic background, see Capponi, ibid., 58: The name of the Franks appears, if I am not wrong, for the first time during the middle of the third century: they were not an ancient people, but, rather, several groups gathered together […] which formed an army of soldiers of fortune on the banks of the Rhine, and from there moved toward Gaul. (emphasis added) Capponi “Lettere al prof. Pietro Capei sulla dominazione dei Longobardi in 102 Italia. Lettera Prima,” 65. 103 Capponi, ibid., 78–79; Capponi, “Lettere al prof. Pietro Capei sulla dominazione dei Longobardi in Italia. Lettera Seconda,” 103. Capponi, “Lettere al prof. Pietro Capei sulla dominazione dei Longobardi in 104 Italia. Lettera Prima,” 88–89. Capponi, “Lettere al prof. Pietro Capei sulla dominazione dei Longobardi in 105 Italia. Lettera Terza. Perché Roma non aprisse ai Longobardi le porte,” originally published as “Continuazione delle lettere sui Longobardi. Parte Terza. Perché Roma non aprisse ai Longobardi le porte,” Archivio Storico Italiano 10, no. 2 (1859): 1–26, reprinted in Capponi, Scritti editi e inediti di Gino Capponi, 1: 126–152. The reference is, in particular, to page 139. 106 Capponi, “Lettere al prof. Pietro Capei sulla dominazione dei Longobardi in Italia. Lettera Terza. Perché Roma non aprisse ai Longobardi le porte,” 128. Capponi, ibid., 129–130. 107 Capponi, ibid., 131–133. 108 Capponi, ibid., 130. 109 110 Capponi, ibid., 136–139.

116  The ‘Lombard Question’ 111 Capponi, ibid., 140, 148–149. 112 Porciani, L’ «Archivio Storico Italiano», 135. On Galvani’s substratum theory, see Giovanni Galvani, “Delle genti e delle favelle loro in Italia. Discorso del conte Giovanni Galvani accademico della Crusca,” Archivio Storico Italiano 14 (1849): 9–221. 113 Capponi, “Lettere al prof. Pietro Capei sulla dominazione dei Longobardi in Italia. Lettera Terza. Perché Roma non aprisse ai Longobardi le porte,” 137. 114 Manzoni, Adelchi: tragedia di A. Manzoni, con un Discorso sur alcuni punti della storia longobardica in Italia 193. Troya, Della condizione de’ Romani vinti da’ Longobardi, ccclviii–ccclix. 115 Geary, The Myth of Nations, 41, 55–58, 63, 155. 116 Capponi, “Lettere al prof. Pietro Capei sulla dominazione dei Longobardi in Italia. Lettera Prima,” 57–58. 117 Artifoni, “Le questioni longobarde,” 302. 118 On this particular problem, see Silvana Patriarca, “Le relazioni pericolose: ‘razza’ e nazione nel Risorgimento,” in Adriano Roccucci, ed., La costruzione dello stato-nazione in Italia (Rome: Viella, 2012), 115. Carlo Troya a Cesare Balbo, 14 lettera, Napoli, 31 del 1833, 122–123; Capponi, 119 “Lettere al prof. Pietro Capei sulla dominazione dei Longobardi in Italia. Lettera Prima,” 81. 120 Thom, Republics, Nations, and Tribes, 227; McMahon, The Races of Europe, 25–29, 105. Carlo Troya a Cesare Balbo, 14 lettera, Napoli, 31 del 1833, 123. 121 Carlo Troya a Cesare Balbo, 14 lettera, Napoli, 31 del 1833, 123; Augstein “From 122 the Land of the Bible to the Caucasus and beyond,” 71. On the resistance to comparative linguistics in Italy and Indo-Europeanism, see Thom, Republics, Nations, and Tribes, 275–277. On the relative delay of comparative linguistics in Italy and how it could weaken the mythopoeses of primacy and Classicism, see Timpanaro, Sulla linguistica dell’Ottocento, 109–111, 115. On Manzoni’s refutation of the new comparative linguistics, Dardano, “Sulla linguistica di Manzoni,” 84–90. 123 McMahon, The Races of Europe, 32–33. 124 Vincenzo Gioberti and Cesare Balbo manifested a keen interest in the natural history of man and in naturalists and ethnologists like Georges Cuvier and James Cowles Prichard. Both intellectuals embedded the findings and the taxonomies of physical anthropology in his explanation of Italian ethnogenesis without putting into question the authority of the Bible. For further details, see Chapter 5 of this book.

4

On the complexities of the ethnogenesis Giandomenico Romagnosi and Carlo Cattaneo on national ‘stocks’ and racial ‘types’

In the previous chapter, we observed how new understandings of race— intended either as physical ‘type’ or ‘variety’—gradually emerged alongside the older notion of race as a ‘stock,’ ‘lineage,’ or ‘descent’ in order to explain the origins of the Italian population. The historian Giuseppe Micali, in his 1832 treatise on the ancient Italic populations, argued for the persistence throughout millennia of a ‘universal Italian race’ which was, among other things, the ‘same type’ that he called ‘the diverse race of the Caucasus.’ Arguably, Micali’s emphatic view on the non-alteration of a national ‘type’ can be explained by his manifest intent to defend the premise of the autochthony, along with the primacy of the Italic, and Etruscan civilizations. Adriano Balbi, in his more sobering and ‘neutral’ geographical and statistical works, classified the Europeans as belonging to the ‘Caucasian variety,’ deeming the emerging science of race a useful—although not completely refined—tool for the reconstruction of the history of humankind. In short, although the authors examined may have held different opinions about Italian identity and, most of all, about the new naturalistic definition of race— ranging from Micali’s adherence to the theory of ‘types’ to Balbi’s cautious approach to the classification of human species into varieties—they all seem to concur on the increasing importance of the natural history of man for the investigation of human societies. In the emerging cultural climate so deeply influenced by Romanticism, new disciplines such as the nascent physical anthropology and most of all linguistics were increasingly used to explain the past when the more traditional antiquarian, archaeological, and historiographical approaches seemed to fall short. The ‘life’ of nations, in particular, became the principal subject of burgeoning literary and didactic genres in which historical, political, and even class developments were increasingly explained through the lens of a conflict between ‘stocks’ and ‘races.’ Against this backdrop, the investigation of antiquity and the Middle Ages acquired a fresh impulse, and even those scholars and intellectuals who did not fully adhere to the tropes of Romanticism joined the debate surrounding the first Italians and the very inception of the formation of the Italian identity. Giandomenico Romagnosi (1761–1835) and his disciple Carlo Cattaneo (1801–1869) represent, in a certain sense, notable

118  On the complexities of the ethnogenesis exceptions to the main trends of Romantic ethnography for their cautiousness toward some of the main cultural debates—such as, for example, the querelle between Classicists and Romantics—concerning the past of the nation and the identification of a founding moment of the modern national identity, whether in pre-Roman, Roman, or medieval Italy. Due to their interest in the legacy of pre-Roman and Etruscan populations, and, in particular, the origins of Italic civilization, Romagnosi and Cattaneo could be considered the last figures of the ‘Etrusco-mania’ which dates back to eighteenth-century antiquarianism and reached one of its peaks at the onset of the nineteenth century with the works of Vincenzo Cuoco and Giuseppe Micali. On the other hand, their research activity on the early Middle Ages, which gave them an original opinion on the debate surrounding the so-called Questione Longobarda, made them fully conversant with the broader Romantic debate about Italian ethnogenesis, although they cannot be enumerated among the representatives of Italian Romanticism. Throughout their entire research, these two authors refrained from identifying what could be considered the quintessential Italian identity in a given group or ethnicity, nor would they assume the existence of a ‘pure’ and ‘national’ ethnocultural lineage unaltered from any foreign contamination. Rather, first Romagnosi, and then Cattaneo, reconstructed the development of Italian culture as the result of different contributions: autochthonous as well as external. Accordingly, it would have been completely senseless to portray the flourishing of the Italic cultures without considering the crucial influx of the Northern African and Middle Eastern civilizations, or the legacy of the Roman municipia without considering the great federative experiment of the Etruscans. Likewise, the fifth- and sixth-century CE Germanic invasions were not represented as a zero-sum game as a conflict of ‘races’ between invaders and invaded, but rather as a process of assimilation that catalyzed modern Italian identity. From such a perspective, the idea of a pure ‘national’ genealogy—and therefore the concept of race as a ‘lineage’—is heavily criticized, as are the efforts to reconstruct a physical ‘derivation.’ Yet, the rebuttal of pure national descent was not accompanied in either Romagnosi or Cattaneo by an aversion to nascent modern racialism. Rather, the concept of race as a physical ‘type’ borrowed from the natural science of man was employed simply to deny that any conflation between language and ‘blood’ operated, as we have seen in the previous chapter, in the work of many Romantic intellectuals. Surprisingly, if we consider the successive ‘marriage’ between scientific racism and nationalism in the nineteenth century, the work of Romagnosi and Cattaneo used the modern racialist concept of ‘type’ against the idea of pure, autochthonous, national ‘lineage.’ Cattaneo, in particular, employed the findings of the natural history of man to show the extent to which language and culture transcended the geographical and physical boundaries of the distribution of the human ‘types,’ and how any narrative purporting to identify a superior nation contradicted the basic tenets of typological

On the complexities of the ethnogenesis  119 racialism, craniology, and phrenology. From such a perspective, the position of Romagnosi and Cattaneo represents a clear example of how even a strict adherence to naturalistic racialism did not necessarily imply acceptance of jingoist rhetoric or the emerging scientific racism.

Giandomenico Romagnosi on Africa, Rome, and physical types We are not afraid to offend Italy’s national pride by rejecting the hypothesis of an original indigenous civilization, since such ‘offense’ would be shared with Asia, Africa, the Americas, and the rest of Europe. Italy has been indeed so superior in developing foreign cultural contributions [literally, ‘seeds brought from abroad’] to beat any comparison. […] Do we really care about the original provenance of the Libyans, the Syrians, and the Pelasgians? What did these people really do in their native lands? What, on the other hand, were the Italians able to do once they were civilized by these foreign populations?1 In reviewing Micali’s Storia degli antichi popoli italiani, the Emilian philosopher and scholar Giandomenico Romagnosi wrote these lines to summarize his indifference toward the myth of the autochthony of the Italian civilization and its ‘primacy.’ As he pointed out throughout his intellectual activity, the real particularity of the entire Italian civilization resided not in its supposed indigenousness, but in its development and unfolding as a result of different cultural contributions throughout its millennial history. In such an outlook, Romagnosi criticizes Micali for having merely focused on demonstrating the autochthony of the Etruscan civilization, and having, on the other hand, willfully ignored the primeval, ‘foreign’ contribution to the inception of the Italic civilization—a contribution that the Livornese historian himself seems to acknowledge, but which he does not bother to investigate.2 Such a critique reflects, in a certain sense, the general mindset of Romagnosi’s approach to the shaping of civilizations and ethnicities. In a cultural climate predominantly concerned both with demonstrating the autochthony (and therefore the primacy) of the Italic civilization and with downplaying any foreign contribution to the shaping of the modern Italian identity, Romagnosi would shy away from any grand theory of indigenousness or unilinear development of the national cultures. Equally distant from the stances of the Classicists or conversely, the Romantics, in dealing with some historical cruxes—like, for example, with respect to the Questione Longobarda—Romagnosi argued that Italian ethnogenesis resulted from the contributions of several cultures and ethnicities. From such a perspective, the idea of a ‘pure’ national and ethnocultural ‘lineage’ is rapidly discarded as irrelevant to the historical inquiry (and, as we will see, the Romantic idea of a radical and great ‘transfusion’ of peoples is taken into question for its historical infeasibility).

120  On the complexities of the ethnogenesis On the other hand, the notion of race as a physical ‘type,’ inherited from the natural history of man, was employed by Romagnosi to map the migrations, encounters, and influence between primeval groups, and functioned therefore as a valid heuristic tool in the hands of historians and ethnographers. In Romagnosi, in other words, we start to see how the older idea of race as a pure ‘lineage’ or ‘stock’ is increasingly questioned for its inconsistency, while the new concept provided by the natural science acquires epistemological dignity for its objectiveness in mapping broader human migrations. An Enlightenment intellectual at the height of Romanticism The research activity of Giandomenico Romagnosi is impressive both for its quantity and for the different disciplines with which he engaged, ranging from political philosophy to jurisprudence, economics, and history. As some scholars have pointed out, a considerable number of Romagnosi’s published works, and, most of all, his epistolary activity still wait to be thoroughly classified and examined.3 The works of this philosopher are of pivotal importance for understanding the subsequent so-called ‘Lombard school’ (due to his role, some scholars even spoke—such a term needs no translation— of a Scuola Romagnosiana) which consisted of key intellectual figures of the Risorgimento democrats such as Cattaneo, Giuseppe Ferrari, Gabriele Rosa, and Cesare Correnti.4 Romagnosi is, in effect, considered the forefather of the Risorgimento’s federalist democratic current, or even, as the Tuscan democrat Giuseppe Montanelli seems to suggest, a sort of ‘importer’ of ‘Anglo-Saxon’ liberal-democracy to the Italian patriotic front.5 According to such an interpretation, Romagnosi acted as a dissenting voice struggling to counter the hegemonic voices of first (Catholic) Romanticism and then emerging Hegelian Idealism, to become the founder of a secularized, rationalist, but minority tradition of Italian liberalism.6 Certainly, Romagnosi’s research activity can be defined as an attempt to revive in Italian nineteenth-century culture—deeply imbibed, as Ettore Albertoni has noted, with the ‘metaphysics’ and ‘spiritualism’ of Romanticism—the great intellectual debate of the Enlightenment. Albertoni’s reference is, in particular, to the works of key-figures of the Italian Enlightenment like Cesare Beccaria, Pietro Verri, Gaetano Filangieri, and their reflection on human societies in their ‘concrete,’ practical function as body daily governed by the inner workings of economics and law.7 From this perspective, the study of the human being in its ‘concrete’ reality is conceived as a point of convergence of two great traditions of Italian thought: first, Galilean ‘natural philosophy’ as it concerns the experimental sciences and the philosophical and historical speculation on the origins and development of societies dating back to Giambattista Vico, and second, the eighteenth-century Lombard and Neapolitan economic schools.8

On the complexities of the ethnogenesis  121 Romagnosi would even eventually coin the term civile filosofia (literally, ‘civil philosophy’) to define the branch of philosophical investigation devoted to the study of human societies. In this sense, for his attempt to formulate new analytical tools to study human beings in their historical, economic, social, and even psychological interaction, Romagnosi’s civile filosofia can be properly regarded as a forerunner of modern sociology.9 Such an interest in the socio-historical interaction of man—which has received much less attention than his juridical essays—has dramatically enhanced the fortune of Romagnosi in his time, and still stands as one of the most distinguishing features of his thought. Not by coincidence, the anthropologist Sandra Puccini includes Romagnosi among the forerunners of Italian nineteenth-century anthropology, along with Adriano Balbi, as well as his favorite pupil: Carlo Cattaneo.10 For this reason, if here we cannot illustrate in depth the complexity of Romagnosi’s thought, we must at least delineate his opinions on the complex process of the formations of ethnicities and civilizations, and, in particular, the origin and the development of the Italian nation. On the origin of Italian culture and ‘Incivilimento’ What stands out most about Romagnosi is his substantial disinterest in the reconstruction of a pure ‘national genealogy’ as an unaltered line of descent keeping the Italics ethnically—and even physically—separated from the recurring invaders and conquerors. Investigating the supposed ‘purity’ of Italians from the ethnocultural alteration caused by the Ostrogoth and Lombard invaders in the fifth and sixth centuries CE was one of the main concerns of Romantic intellectuals of his age such as Alessandro Manzoni, Carlo Troya, Cesare Balbo, and Gino Capponi. As early as 1818, amid the well-known cultural querelle between Classicists and Romantics, Romagnosi did not conceal his skepticism toward a certain interpretation of history for the construction of national-patriotic mythopoeses. In his article in the Milanese periodical Il Conciliatore, he criticized the obsessive search for national primacies as well as the ‘crystallization’ of national history into an idealized golden age, whether a ‘Latin’ Classical Antiquity or a ‘Germanic’ Middle Age.11 Nor does he seem particularly interested in reconstructing the ‘physical derivation’ of the Italian nation, which appears just as irrelevant when analyzing the shaping of the Italian civilization: I do not aspire to the glory of fabricating genealogies, especially after I learned that races naturalize in the lands in which they settled, and, by doing so, cease to be foreign. I do wonder, however, why my statement according to which the dawn of Italian civilization can be illustrated with the Latin temples and altars, with the development of political institutions and classical mythologies has been misinterpreted [Romagnosi refers to a comment put to his previous article “Della poesia

122  On the complexities of the ethnogenesis considerata rispetto alle diverse età delle nazioni” by the editor of the journal]. Have you perhaps intended, with that observation, to question my statement? By doing so, you have completely misunderstood my argument. One thing is, in fact, the physical derivation of modern Italians that you have hypothesized; another, instead, is the beginning of modern civilization.12 What, on the contrary, appears paramount in Romagnosi’s reflection on the shaping of Italians is the concept of incivilimento, which he would develop in the following decade. Romagnosi’s incivilimento could be partially translated into ‘civilizational process.’ However, he maintains some of its conceptual peculiarities that deserve a further explanation, and—I would argue—prevent us from using any translation of the term. Despite Romagnosi’s manifest liberal laissez-faire tenets, incivilimento does not resemble our concept of capitalistic development, although the economy seems to play an important role in defining and assessing it.13 Other synonyms of the term, such as ‘culture’ and ‘civilization,’ did not meet Romagnosi’s standards due to their supposed vagueness and narrowness. ‘Culture’ seems employed to define advancement and refinement in all fields of knowledge, more than the totality of the traits characterizing a given society or human groups.14 When it comes to its most obvious synonym—‘civilization’—Romagnosi, commenting on a debate at the University of Paris in 1830, points out that all the definitions provided are more descriptive than explanatory. In his opinion, the contributors to the debate are more concerned with describing what a ‘civilized’ society looks like, rather than explaining how such a socio-economic condition was accomplished.15 For Romagnosi, instead, incivilimento, rather than being a generic condition of freedom, civility, educational and economic advancement, consists of: THAT WAY OF BEING IN THE LIFE OF A STATE THROUGH WHICH IT FULFILLS THE CONDITIONS FOR AN EVOLVED AND SATISFACTORY COEXISTENCE. We are referring to a State— specifically, to a people with an origin and stable settlement in a specific territory, and which lives under civil authority.16 It is noteworthy that Romagnosi refers to the life of a ‘state’ (Stato) and not to a generic human aggregation, and no coincidence that for him, incivilimento consists of four phases that reflect the different socio-historical developmental stages of a historical process which, beginning with the first founders and colonizers, culminates in the era of nations. Thus, the incivilimento process does not resemble a generic manifestation of progress, but rather a cultural and societal development toward the modern nation-state which acts as the political, institutional, and juridical frame of the ‘collective life’ of a given community.17

On the complexities of the ethnogenesis  123 The fact that Romagnosi’s nation-state stands as the ultimate stage of a civilization process is of paramount importance since such a developmental scheme is not a simple chronicle of the last centuries of European history. With the affirmation of the nation-state—contends Romagnosi—European populations would have finally experienced the restitution of their ethnic and territorial integrity and of their individuality.18 What emerges, in effect, is the international dimension of Romagnosi’s approach to the achievement of Italian independence, which is perceived as a European question. Such a view, which would be eventually shared by other democratic intellectuals and leaders of the Risorgimento, complemented the idea of a continuous interrelation between national cultures. For Romagnosi, incivilimento consists of a ‘dative’ and not ‘native’ process, initiated by individuals—labeled with the obscure term temosfori—who act as the first cultural mediators between different human groups. In short, according to Romagnosi, the formation of a national culture constitutes per se a cosmopolitan process, which requires that more advanced societies share their knowledge with other more primitive communities.19 It is evident that, from such a perspective, the quest for an autochthonous cultural primacy is viewed as an enormous historical non-sense: as Romagnosi states, ‘I have always regarded the assumption according to which every people can evolve to civilization only on their own as a pathetic desire.’20 Romagnosi criticizes Micali for his exclusive focus on demonstrating the autochthony of the Etruscan civilization. By doing so, according to Romagnosi, the Tuscan scholar deliberately ignored the linguistic, historiographical, and archaeological evidence of the crucial cultural influx of other (and more advanced) Mediterranean populations in the Peninsula.21 In other words, according to Romagnosi, Micali was so busy collecting proofs for his thesis of the Etruscan primacy that he failed to see a self-evident fact: the Northern African origins of Etruscan and Italic cultures. And the Etruscan toponyms, religious terms, and arts disclose—he insists—the indisputable of the cultural influx of Libyan, Egyptian, and Syriac civilizations. The question of which of these populations might have constituted the first civilizers of the Peninsula, continues Romagnosi, is completely irrelevant, given their profound social, commercial, and cultural relations across the ancient Mediterranean Basin.22 In reading Romagnosi’s critique of Micali, a modern reader naturally wonders if the former might have actually ventured into a field which he failed to adequately master, not to mention his basic knowledge of the emerging ethnographical disciplines. His analysis, in fact, displays argumentative flaws as well as curious theses.23 De Francesco has, for example, noticed Romagnosi’s ‘implausible references’ to the alleged African origins of the Italic civilization, a theory which ‘would never become a particularly popular one, but’—as he continues—‘neither would it be immediately forgotten.’24 In fact, Romagnosi’s theories may have already sounded quite singular for a period in which few scholars would have argued for a Northern African

124  On the complexities of the ethnogenesis provenance of the Italic language and culture, nor deliberately ignored—as Romagnosi seems to do at least in his reviews of Micali and in his monograph on the incivilimento of Italy—the growing question of a greater IndoEuropean linguistic family. Paradoxically, for a scholar insisting on the need to ground his thesis on ‘positive’ linguistic and archaeological facts and evidence, Romagnosi seems to increasingly rely on a curious mixture of mythological and iconographical inferences which make him resemble more an eighteenth-century antiquarian rather than a nineteenth-century ethnographer.25 Such omissions and flaws appear inexplicable, especially when compared to the efforts of his favorite pupil, Carlo Cattaneo, himself conversant with the ongoing linguistic and ethno-anthropological developments of his age. The ‘type’ against the lineage Romagnosi seems to keep pace with his times when he employs the anthropological notion of ‘type’ to reconstruct the human and cultural fluxes of the ancient Peninsula. Although he disagrees with Micali’s rigid autochthonism, he also believes that the examination of archaeological artifacts and iconography could help in determining, with extreme verisimilitude, the physical traits of the ancient inhabitants of the Peninsula. From this perspective, which would discomfort modern archaeologists and scholars for its countless methodological flaws, ancient iconography and artifacts provide further indisputable evidence of the Northern African—‘Libyan’—origins of the Italic civilization.26 The gods, heroes, and other mythological figures portrayed on Etruscan coins show, for example, those ‘curly beards and hairs’ which are by no means ‘Italic,’ along with those ‘features similar to the European ones’ and different from those of the ‘negro race’ which characterize the ‘Berbers.’27 Romagnosi, in fact, enriches Micali’s analysis of the iconographical sources with the archaeological and osteological evidence. Besides pointing out the ‘black’ Bacchus and Jupiter, he examines those anatomical peculiarities considered the ultimate proof of a non-European descent of the early Italic gods, and, therefore, of the first civilizers of the Peninsula. All the figures displayed in Etruscan iconography bear—as he emphasizes—those indisputable signs of their belonging to the ‘European race,’ including, for example, their ‘facial angle.’ Yet, the peculiar position of their ears, in a position slightly ‘higher’ than the European average, does not result from a particular stylistic choice of the ancient artists, as previously thought by many archaeologists or orientalists. Rather, it is a realistic rendering of an anatomical—and therefore typological—peculiarity confirmed by a craniological examination of the Egyptian mummies: As for the religious origins […], it is necessary to revert to the table described above. One singularity emerges from all six figures […]. It provides us with a visible sign of the foreign provenance of the religion

On the complexities of the ethnogenesis  125 prevailing among the Italic populations. This singularity is represented by the ear, which is placed higher than the usual position of the European figures, and that is found both in the portraits of the Egyptians gods and pharaohs and on the mummies. […] The observation of thirty mummies’ heads has shown that the facial angle was similar to that of the European race, whereas the auricular orifice was positioned higher than the median line of the eyes. […] The same position of the ear can apparently be observed in several Etruscan tables mentioned by Mr. Micali, which include twenty-six figures whose ear is placed at that particular height. Now, how is it possible to think that such portraits could have been modeled on human figures who were indigenous to Italy? Would it not be legitimate, instead, to suppose their foreign provenance? If these [portraits] were eventually reproduced in the paintings and the statues found in Italy, should we not conclude, perhaps, that those [figures] were modeled on the types brought by the first temosfori [religious authorities and civilizers] who arrived in Italy?28 Thus, Romagnosi, who places little confidence in the existence of ‘pure’ national ‘stocks,’ resorts to physical anthropology—specifically, craniological ‘types’—to map the ancient migrations of broader human groups and reveal the geographical provenance of the first civilizers of the Peninsula. As he points out, these gods portrayed in Etruscan sculpture resemble the ‘European race,’ but their skin, hair, and ‘facial angles’ display the signs of an indisputable non-European (and, therefore, not Italic) provenance.29 He concludes that these sculptures were carved following the ‘types’ brought to Italy by its first civilizers. Here is evident an interesting aspect of Romagnosi’s investigation into the Italic past: the conflict between the concept of race as ‘stock/lineage’ and, conversely, as a physical ‘type.’ In other words, Romagnosi does not consider the issue of a ‘pure’ national lineage worthy of any scholarly attention due to the ‘naturalization’ of ‘races’ (intended in this case as ‘stocks/ lineages’) in the territories where they settled as well as their irrelevance to the study of cultural evolution. When it comes, however, to the idea of a ‘negro’ or a ‘European’ ‘race’ based on phenotypical and anthropometric differences, the concept of race as a physical type acquires, if not a scientific, at least a heuristic relevance in tracing the provenance of certain populations. The advent of the natural history of man, and the resulting integration of the human being within the natural realm, race whether as ‘variety’ or ‘type,’ is used to classify and define those people inhabiting huge regions and continents.30 Thus, the ‘races’ intended as ‘stocks’ and ‘lineages’ ‘mix’ and ‘naturalize’ in the areas where they settle, making it misleading to consider the persistence of pure, unaltered, national lineages. Yet, certain phenotypical and anthropometric factors, inherited and persisting through generations, may help to map the origin if not of a precise nation, then at

126  On the complexities of the ethnogenesis least of larger human macro-groups. For these reasons, unlike Micali, Romagnosi never seems to refer to an ‘Italian stock’ or ‘universal Italian race’ based on phenotypic criteria, but, on the other hand, neither seems to discard the epistemological validity of the naturalistic concepts of race both as ‘type’ or ‘variety.’ In conclusion, a surprising (to our modern eyes) aspect emerges in Romagnosi’s approach to the study of the ethnic past of Italy. If we consider the conflation of the ideas of race as ‘lineage’ and race as ‘type’ operated by nineteenth-century nationalism—evident in Micali when he refers to the ‘Italian’ type—Romagnosi stands out as an interesting case.31 While deeming as irrelevant (if not refuting) the idea of a pure, distinct national lineage in explaining the evolution of Italian identity, Romagnosi seems to accept the findings of the natural history of man as useful tools in the historical and ethnographic investigation. However, he does not consider the ‘physical derivation’ of the Italians a topic worthy of any scholarly attention due to the impossibility of tracing exact and distinct ‘national genealogy.’ Concerning the early Middle Ages, Romagnosi does not view the encounter between Lombards and Romano-Italics (whom he calls ‘Italians’) as a ‘struggle’ opposing ‘races,’ but, rather, as an asymmetrical encounter between two cultures. According to Romagnosi, in effect, the Romano-Italics surely suffered the burdensome economic and human costs of the Lombard conquest. After the initial phase of wars and turmoil, however, the real ‘conquerors’ were the ‘Italians’ who, thanks to the power and prestige of both the Catholic Church and Roman law, turned the tables, so to speak, and assimilated the Lombards, ultimately ‘diluting’ them in the broader indigenous population.32 This focus on the survival and the effective assimilative powers of Roman culture and institutions explains why, in the last part of his monograph on the Italic incivilimento, Romagnosi demonstrates in particular how Roman law and municipal traditions evolved, ‘through different forms,’ into the medieval Italian civilization of the free comuni.33 Moreover, while other intellectuals endeavored to investigate, as we have seen, how the ‘fusion’ of Latin and Germanic ‘elements’ may have resulted in the creation of a new national identity, Romagnosi defended the preeminence (under different guises) of Roman culture vis-à-vis the Germanic one. He questioned the historical feasibility of great ‘transmigrations’ or ‘transfusions’ of entire, distinct, populations which could have abruptly and dramatically changed the culture of a population, urging his readers to consider the multiple facets of migration processes, which are always determined and characterized by the socio-economic structure of given human groups. This is why, he insists, complete ‘transfusions’ of populations appear very unlikely among sedentary agricultural societies such as the ancient and medieval European ones.34 Many of these aspects, from the epistemological focus on the ‘positive facts’ to the persistence of Roman jus and municipia in the Italian culture, as well as the interest in physical anthropology (and the

On the complexities of the ethnogenesis  127 refutation of distinct, pure national ‘lineages’), would be eventually found in the work of Romagnosi’s favorite ‘disciple’: the Milanese Carlo Cattaneo. In reading his pages, it is evident that Cattaneo further refined and discussed all the aspects of Romagnosi’s approach to the formation of nationalities as a complex, plural, and ‘cosmopolitan’ phenomenon.

Carlo Cattaneo on antiquity, Middle Ages, and modern racialism To spread a language is not [the same thing as] to instill different blood in the veins.35 The Lombard intellectual Carlo Cattaneo is unanimously regarded as the most important and renowned exponent of democratic federalism in Risorgimento Italy.36 To his mind, the necessity of an institutional federal layout for Italian nationhood was consistent with his idea of profound regional and even local differences and peculiarities characterizing the entire Peninsula, going back to pre-Roman antiquity.37 Like his mentor Romagnosi, Cattaneo, though committed to Italian unification, highlighted the complexities of Italian ethnogenesis.38 Furthermore, in an age when most nationalist intellectuals aimed to demonstrate unilinear and ‘monolithic’ national lineages, he regarded diversity as a key resource of both Italy and Europe.39 Accordingly, Cattaneo’s investigation and systematization of historical and ethnographic theories on the origins and development of the Italian nationalities were conceived not only as a ‘science’ of the nation from a purely scholarly perspective, but also as a science for the nation for the mapping and governance of the future statehood.40 This interest in the exploration of the Italic and Italian past gradually became a paramount aspect of his intellectual activity, to the extent that his ethnographic, linguistic, and historical essays came to comprise a significant share of his entire publications and writings. Between Romagnosi and the Romantics Cattaneo’s philosophical and heuristic approach can be essentially defined as a further development and ‘revision’ of Romagnosi’s ‘civil philosophy.’ Like his mentor, Cattaneo has been labeled as an ante-litteram positivist— an interpretation that has been, however, debated in recent years.41 Similar to Romagnosi (and subsequent positivist intellectuals), Cattaneo perceived philosophy as a ‘synthesis of all human sciences,’ although the primacy of the ‘positive facts’ in his interpretative and argumentative frames should be not excessively exaggerated.42 As the sociologist and anthropologist Delia Frigessi has noted, Cattaneo’s philosophy undoubtedly appears as a ‘general method of knowledge,’ whose object of study is the human being through the findings of the natural sciences.43 Yet, as she specifies, the

128  On the complexities of the ethnogenesis general configuration of his thought still appears as a sort of ‘humanist positivism’ with a ‘decisive historicist imprint.’44 It appears, therefore, incautious to credit Cattaneo with that reliance on natural sciences as the main interpretative key of the reality that would later characterize Positivism. Rather, Cattaneo’s speculations can be understood to be at the crossroads of different cultural and philosophical trends of his age, recognizable throughout his work. Undoubtedly, his defense of ‘positive’ facts and natural science in the investigation of human history allows for certain reconstructions regarding a fil-rouge linking Cattaneo to the subsequent glottological and anthropological studies of Positivism.45 Yet, his ‘anchoring’ to ‘facts’ can be still interpreted as a defensive, genuinely Enlightenment rationalist and anti-teleological refutation of Romantic suggestions and myths. On the other hand, his interpretation of history as a progressive path undertaken by nations and societies toward moral and social amelioration may have been informed, as it has been suggested by Frigessi, precisely by Romanticism.46 Surely, Cattaneo’s view on the birth and evolution of societies was deeply indebted to Romagnosi’s concept of incivilimento, which he seems to completely adopt and revive. Peculiar to his Emilian mentor is the rebuttal of the Rousseauian concept of the ‘social contract’ concerning the origin of nation and states, meaning the idea of a primeval sudden association among individuals giving birth to new societies and governments.47 Rather, he regarded the shaping of human groups and societies as a gradual process characterized by local peculiarities, as well as by advancement and setbacks. In this sense, as he suggests, the examination of economic and demographic development in a given society is more illuminating than founding ‘covenants’ or ‘events,’ for it could explain the progressive evolution from the scattered primitive tribes to the more complex societal conglomerations of the ancient and medieval polities, and, ultimately, the modern nation-states.48 Interestingly, the nation itself (although praised as the ultimate form of human development) is historicized, and Cattaneo was extremely careful throughout his research activity to underline the societal and juridical peculiarities differentiating modern nation-states from the preceding potentates, kingdoms, and empires.49 Such a developmental path to the nation-state form does not, however, suggest that Cattaneo regarded civilization as a self-sufficient and autochthonous process. Like Romagnosi before him, Cattaneo maintains the impossibility of a worldwide, homogeneous human development due to evident pre-existing environmental conditions that produce inevitable differences and disparities among human groups. In such an asymmetry—or in simple differentiation between human communities— resided, as he points out, the exchange of knowledge and customs which make incivilimento a cosmopolitan rather than a national process. Again, along the lines of his mentor and other prominent intellectuals of his age, such as Alexander Von Humboldt (1769–1859), Cattaneo regards diversity rather than homogeneity as the ultimate catalyst for human progress.50

On the complexities of the ethnogenesis  129 Cattaneo proved himself an intellectual fully conversant with the main cultural trends of his era. He was stimulated by and, as Frigessi suggests, even fascinated by Romanticism to a certain extent, in terms of its shaping of ethnicities, thereby prompting his focus on popular poetry, folklore, and language.51 His interest in literature and poetry was, however, marginal, as was his scant attention to the debate between Classicists and Romantics.52 Concerning historiography, Cattaneo avidly read and commented on several authors, especially the works by Augustin and Amédée Thierry. Yet, their interpretations of French political and societal conflict through the lens of a ‘struggle’ among ‘stocks’ left him profoundly perplexed.53 Furthermore, when addressing the main authors of nascent Indo-Europeanist comparative linguistics, such as Friedrich Schlegel, Cattaneo recognized their indisputable merits and authority. Nevertheless, he strongly criticized their conflation of ‘stock/race’ and ‘language’ as well as their simplistic theory of the great ‘transfusion’ of people in mapping the spread of Indo-European languages across Eurasia.54 An anti-Romantic comparative linguist? The critique of the ethno-linguistic theories of German Romantic authors and their quest for original, ‘pure’ languages and stocks characterize Cattaneo’s research activity. Some scholars have read in his hesitation in approaching these theories an additional proof of the difficult penetration of German thought in Italy due to evident linguistic and cultural barriers. Others, like Sebastiano Timpanaro, have pointed out the overt anti-Celtic and anti-Germanic biases in Cattaneo’s examination of the past.55 Undoubtedly, the refutation of the main clichés of Celticism and Germanism reflected a certain intolerance toward the jingoistic tones of the French and German Romantic intellectuals and scholars of his age. To explain such hostility, it is useful to turn to the influence of Romagnosi’s teaching, exemplified by his ironic refutation of Romantic and Classicist suggestions and mythopoeses in the pages of the Il Conciliatore. Essentially, from Romagnosi, Cattaneo borrowed his conception of human groups and societies as constantly evolving entities, and, therefore, the historical implausibility and anachronism of ‘nations’ like the modern ones in antiquity and Middle Ages.56 Despite this criticism of the idea of primeval and pristine nations preceding all historical phenomena and institutions, Cattaneo manifested a deep interest in language as the main indicator of the evolution of ethnicities. Undoubtedly, the conception of language as a collective creation and therefore an indicator of national character typifies Romanticism.57 Additionally, Cattaneo surely considered the importance of linguistic studies in examining language as an identity-making tool for its performative capabilities on mentality and social interaction. From this perspective, language itself contributes to the construction of identity rather than simply representing it.58 Such aspects may also explain why Cattaneo embraced the nascent

130  On the complexities of the ethnogenesis Indo-European comparative linguistics, revisiting the discussion and critical approach to its explanatory models, which seems absent, for example, in the work of Bernardino Biondelli, who introduced him to the new linguistic discipline.59 In the early 1840s, Indo-European (or ‘Indo-Germanic’ as they were called) studies seemed to finally consolidate in the Italian cultural panorama.60 According to Timpanaro, the possible reasons for their relative delay include the hegemony of Catholic thought in the Peninsula, and, in particular, the defense of biblical accounts and genealogies. Moreover, the new comparative linguistics, by establishing a direct connection with Indian culture, seemed to counter the idea of a direct derivation of the Mediterranean and Italic classical cultures from the African and Egyptian civilization in particular. Thus, the new linguistics could not avoid the opposition between the ‘neo-Vichian school’ and the ‘Pelasgo-maniacs’—as Timpanaro labels them—which, on the contrary, stressed the direct kinship with the African and Middle Eastern societies to defend the idea of an Italic primacy vis-à-vis Europe.61 Undoubtedly, as Timpanaro states, the presence of strong cultural and scholarly traditions allowed for a certain resistance toward the spread of new comparative linguistics in the ethnological fields. However, I would not emphasize such a contrast between old eighteenth-century Classicist ‘Primacy-bearers’—or even ‘Pelasgomaniac’—traditions and the new Indo-Europeanists. As we have seen, in effect, even staunch defenders of the Italic ‘primacy’ like Cuoco or Etruscologists like Micali were open to new linguistic theories concerning a common European linguistic ancestor, and seemed to pose a distinction between linguistic and cultural derivation. Such a coexistence between ‘old’ and ‘new’ theories would characterize the work of other authors, such as Vincenzo Gioberti. Cattaneo, for his part, manifested an enthusiastic attitude toward IndoEuropean linguistics, but tempered with some caution. For example, he considered the idea of a pure, divine language inherited by subcontinental Indians and transmitted to the Germanics—as portrayed by Friedrich Schlegel in his Über die Sprache und Weisheit der Indier (1808)—as nothing more than a vain repetition of the errors of eighteenth-century antiquarianism. In his opinion, the idea of a pure ‘divine’ language recalled more the implausible myth of a lost superior civilization, rather than the historically grounded hypothesis of the bestioni (literally ‘big beasts’) of Vico: meaning the evolution of languages from very primitive groups.62 Additionally, although Cattaneo believed in the historicity of the human encounters which could have spread Indo-European idioms from India to Europe, he tends not to conflate the propagation of a language and culture with the physical expansion or transfer of a population. In other words, Cattaneo surely concurs with the idea of the spread of this new linguistic group from the Indian subcontinent into Europe. According to his reconstruction, the ‘Indo-Persian’ (as he defines it) civilization spread in Europe through the Mediterranean—and therefore, not by coincidence, through Italy and

On the complexities of the ethnogenesis  131 Greece to eventually reach the continent—rather than through the Sarmatic plains, as German linguists asserted.63 Such a spread, however, did not involve a massive and ‘radical transfusion of races’ as certain ‘superficial authors maintain’—he adds—due to the extreme complexity, gradualness, and scarce demographic impact of the migration process, which rarely involves large sudden transfers of populations.64 In an 1841 article in the Il Politecnico—“Sul Principio istorico delle lingue Europee”— Cattaneo aimed to discredit once and for all the idea of a radical transmigration process in favor of the hypothesis of a gradual and complex linguistic intermingling by relying also on modern physical anthropology.65 Modern Europeans, he asserts, are linguistically bound to Indians, but they do not share similar bodily features. Moreover, Georgian and Azeri populations are among the ‘most beautiful of the white stock,’ but their languages are by no means related to those of the other white Europeans—further proof of the profound gap between physical and linguistic derivation.66 Would anybody dare to prove a direct biological kinship between a Frenchman and a ‘negro of Haiti’ simply because they share the same language? Would future ethnologists posit a descent of South American populations from the subcontinental Indians simply because they mostly speak Spanish or Portuguese?67 For Cattaneo, these simple paradoxes demonstrate that language might sometimes follow stock, but that the ‘sameness or similarity of languages proves the connection of great historical exchange between the peoples, but they never prove the same lineage.’68 It is therefore key to point out—especially if we consider the further racialization of the Indo-Europeans into a proper ‘physical’ race by nineteenth-century Aryanism—Cattaneo’s refutation of the biologization of linguistic groups on clear racialist premises. This ‘Romagnosian’ imprinting insisting on the separation between the physical and cultural ‘derivation’ of human populations would eventually re-emerge in his defense of ‘theory of types’ from the wrongful appropriation by nationalist authors. On history: polygeny and ‘substratum’ In this sense, as Timpanaro has observed, if Romantics (and in particular German Romatincs) exaggerated great migrations, for his part Cattaneo was too drastic in emphasizing the sedentariness of early European peoples.69 Such a view was completely consistent with his polygenist racial and linguistic tenets regarding the origins of humankind. According to Cattaneo, the history of languages can be summarized as a path from local particularities to gradual broader homogeneous aggregates.70 The ‘Indo-Persian’ linguistic family undoubtedly acted as a catalyst for this process by gradually overlapping with and assimilating the previous aboriginal languages of the continent. The ‘living’ relics of this pristine Europe are spoken, as Cattaneo observes, in scattered settlements in the most isolated or peripheral extremes of the Eurasian peninsula. Yet, as he continues, their traces were

132  On the complexities of the ethnogenesis still evident in the main dialects of each European country, and of Italy in particular, through the linguistic phenomenon of the substratum.71 The hypothesis of the footprints of primeval idioms (and therefore ethnicities) in current language was by no means new; it traced back to early modern French humanists like Étienne Pasquier (1529–1615) and Charles Du Cange (1610–1688). In eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century Italy, some philologists and antiquarians argued for the presence of pre-Roman, Etruscan, Oscan, Gaul, and Greek roots and words both in vernacular Latin and in Italian dialects. For example, Scipione Maffei’s theory of the linguistic substratum had already acquired a general systematization that would be eventually adopted by Cattaneo, and, later, by Graziadio Isaia Ascoli (1829–1907).72 Therefore, Cattaneo cannot be considered a proper groundbreaker in the substratum studies, but, rather, as a popularizer of the topic in context of the Risorgimento debate. His main difference may reside, as Timpanaro again points out, in his positive view of such a linguistic phenomenon, which was surely a result of his federalist convictions regarding the preservation of local autonomies and freedoms.73 In short, Cattaneo’s inexhaustible interest in the history of the European ethnicities might associate him with his Romantic interlocutors. His refutation of divine origins of certain languages, of the mythopoesis of ‘two nations in the same land’ as conceived, for example, by Thierry, his defense of Vico’s linguistic historicism, and, ultimately, his Romagnosian cultural inheritance (along with his diffidence toward German authors) made him a sort of living antithesis of Romantic nationalism.74 At this point, one might naturally wonder how Cattaneo conceives of the Italian cultural identity, and how he reconciles his idea of a greater nazione Italiana with the local, regional piccole patrie. Unlike Romagnosi or other authors, Cattaneo does not seem particularly concerned with the question of the origins of Italic culture. Rather, such a question does not even seem to be considered in his works examined so far. On the one hand, it is likely that he did not wish to re-discuss a vexata quæstio already treated and thoroughly explored, among others, by his mentor in Dell’indole e dei fattori dell’Incivilimento. As for alternative explanations, one could raise several hypotheses regarding such an absence, but which are not, unfortunately, grounded so far by any evidence. For the moment, we know that Cattaneo considers the prehistoric Peninsula as a nest of several different ‘stocks’ with different languages and cultures. Such a patchwork of populations does not seem to be particularly erased by the gradual infiltration of ‘Indo-Persians’ idioms. Rather, pre-Roman Italy is portrayed as a diverse linguistic setting where the Latinization process would be deeply impacted by the presence of several indigenous languages.75 Among the native ethnicities are, of course, the Etruscans, whose system of self-governing city-states united into leagues is considered by Cattaneo as the prototype of that ‘municipal principle’ which would be eventually adopted and further developed by the Romans. In effect, Cattaneo—who is neither as ferociously anti-Roman as Micali, nor as laudatory as his

On the complexities of the ethnogenesis  133 mentor Romagnosi—does attribute the success of Italian municipalism to the Etruscans, rather than to their imperialist and centralizing Latin counterparts. As he emphasizes in the well-known 1844 volume Notizie naturali e civili su la Lombardia (‘Historical and Natural Information of Lombardy’), the entire destiny of Europe might have been very different had the Etruscan civilization successfully resisted Roman power. Europe, and northern Europe in particular, would have benefitted from the expansion of the Etruscan civilization much more than the Roman one, for the capacity of the former to extend its complex system of city-states without annihilating the pre-existing culture through a violent subjugation. In sum, for Cattaneo, the  ‘federalist’ Etruscans would have ‘tamed’ the Northern ‘barbarians’ without extinguishing their identity and independence. Unlike the Romans, the Etruscans did not expand their empire, even at the cost of creating a ‘dominion without nationality.’76 Here, it is evident that even an intellectual devoid of any Romantic or Classicist suggestions was sympathetic to the traditional tropes of old revolutionary anti-Romanism, and in particular the idea of a free, plural, and confederate pre-Roman Italy which might bolster his federalist principles. Besides anti-Romanism, Cattaneo seems to share with Micali his negative view of the Celtic invasion of the Po valley in the third century BCE, which he portrays as a temporary (but not definitive) setback of the expansion of the Etruscan municipal culture. As he reiterates, it would take several years for the Roman power to revive the Etruscan civic culture partially destroyed by the invading Gauls.77 Unsurprisingly, Cattaneo identifies the beginning of the decadence of Roman civilization in the bureaucratic and militaristic third century CE of Diocletian’s Illyrian Dominatus, which started to erode and eventually erase the old municipal prerogatives of the ancient Res Publica Romanorum and the Principate. In this sense, the barbarian invasion proved as destructive for the Italic culture as did the centralizing and fiscal pressure of the decaying imperial powers of Milan and Constantinople.78 In effect, regarding the Germanic influence (and the Lombard Question in particular), Cattaneo seems to move along the lines set by Romagnosi, who did not believe that the Germanic invasions of the fifth and sixth centuries CE utterly altered the ethnic makeup of Italy. The idea, after all, that the ‘fusion’ of Latin and Germanic ‘bloods’ might have profoundly affected the new medieval culture was by no means a Romantic novelty. As Timpanaro observes, early Renaissance humanists provided several explanations for the evolution of Latin into medieval vernacular Italian. Among them, Flavio Biondo (1392– 1463) believed that the transformation of the Latin language into Italian was mainly a result of the loss of racial purity of the Romans due to their intermingling with the Germanic barbarians.79 Such a hypothesis is very similar to the one posed by some contributors of the Il Conciliatore, who questioned if the mixture of the Italic with the Germanic ‘elements’ could have effectively produced a new Italian identity. Romagnosi’s reply to the editors of

134  On the complexities of the ethnogenesis the journals affirmed, as we have seen, his focus on the reconstruction of cultures rather than ‘physical derivations,’ and questioned the feasibility of ‘great transmigrations.’ Cattaneo, in his turn, follows the path traced by his mentor by emphasizing the scant numbers of Germanic invaders vis-à-vis the autochthonous Latin-speaking population. Moreover, as he adds, some Germanic populations, like the Ostrogoths, were virtually wiped out within a few decades by wars and plagues. In other cases, groups like the Lombards were far from ethnically homogeneous due to the fact that their confederative structure included a wide range of other Germanic and non-Germanic invaders, such as the Slavs.80 In this respect, the ‘Lombard Question,’ which played, as we have seen, a pivotal role in Italian Romanticism, made almost no sense to Cattaneo who, in the footsteps of Romagnosi, defended the extraordinary assimilative power of the Roman culture and the substantial ‘dilution’ of the Germanic invaders into the far larger Latin population. In doing so, Cattaneo is neither denying the importance of studying the barbarians’ contribution to the shaping of Middle Age civilization, nor implying that the invasions fomented no change at all in customs or language.81 Rather, he aims to refute the Romantic suggestion of the ‘regeneration’ of ‘deteriorated Roman blood’ through the intermingling with the victorious Germanics. If a community which was ‘lost’ and was then ‘regenerated’—as Cattaneo’s analysis seems to suggest—it was the more primitive Germanic one, completely absorbed by the superior Roman culture.82 In explaining the endurance and assimilative power of Romano-Italic culture, Cattaneo points to the role of Roman law, the Catholic Church, and, of course, of the old municipal institutions. For this reason also, Cattaneo calls Italian cities that survived the predicaments of the Early Middle Ages to flourish and thrive in the age of the free, self-governing comuni, as ‘knocked-out’ rather than ‘dead’ ‘bodies.’83 Such a narrative cannot, of course, be further from the typical Romantic one of ‘uncorrupted’ Germanics instilling new blood and freedom in the decaying Latin populations. Cattaneo, in fact, points out that a scant number of newcomers were rapidly assimilated and absorbed as the result of the municipal freedoms by a far more numerous and culturally superior local population. In short, what seems to characterize Cattaneo’s account of Italian identity is the persistence—through evolving forms, of course—of distinct (and ancient) cultural traits, with no particular attention paid to ‘pure’ national lineages or genealogies. The rejection of Romantic narratives around distinct national ‘stocks’ or ‘races’ is, in fact, contradicted by historical and methodological premises. First, the primeval plurality of the Peninsula as the nest of various ‘stocks’ which would eventually converge under the amalgamating power of Roman culture, capable of assimilating all the newcomers. Second, the factual incongruity in human history, between biological descent and the cultural derivation of populations, prevents the reconstruction of coherent, ‘pure’ national bloodlines in which language and race are perfectly coincident. Last but not least, even the more accurate

On the complexities of the ethnogenesis  135 genealogical reconstruction of a national descent may prove useless since, as Cattaneo often reminds us, the national ‘genius’ and ‘character’ do not reside in ‘blood,’ but in language.84 The ‘type’ against the lineage: part II At this point, we might wonder if Cattaneo completely rejects the idea of race as a pure ‘lineage,’ ‘stock,’ or ‘descent,’ what about other notions of race as a physical ‘type’ or ‘variety’? The new editorial series of the Il Politecnico (printed almost twenty-five years after his first ethnographic essays) reflects Cattaneo’s growing interest in physical anthropology which was undoubtedly stimulated by the emergence of Positivism in the Italian culture. His 1862 review of the posthumous edition of Samuel George Morton’s unedited writings—Types of Mankind (1854)—outlined Morton’s theories regarding the origins and the classifications of human species.85 Samuel George Morton (1799–1851) was an American physician and anthropologist, author of Crania Americana (1839), which classified humankind into Caucasian, Mongolian, Malay, American, and Ethiopian races (in turn, subdivided into twenty subgroups, reflecting the teachings of Blumenbach and Camper). In this renowned book, Morton expressed his polygenist tenets, such as, for example, the division of human races as proper different species and not—as in the monogenist view—as different ‘varieties’ of the same human species. Devoted to craniology, Morton claimed that he could attribute the superior intellectual skills of the Caucasians to their larger than average cranial volume. Morton’s works reflected profound racist attitudes, especially toward Blacks and Native Americans, whom he regarded as incapable of self-improvement. Morton believed that all major civilizations on Earth resulted from the presence (or the strong influx) of Caucasian populations. His influence in the coeval medical and anthropological debate was considerable, and affected the works of other physicians and anthropologists like Josiah C. Nott (1804– 1873) and Louis Agassiz (1807–1873), who edited the volume examined by Cattaneo.86 The review of Types of Mankind constitutes therefore an important document, for it enables us to understand Cattaneo’s overall evaluation of the natural history of man as a tool for explaining human differences and social development. Cattaneo criticized scientific racism by highlighting how certain authors, animated by aggressive jingoism, anti-Black prejudice, and slaveholding interests, distorted the anthropological theory of the craniological ‘types’ which they purported to observe and promote.87 The interest of Cattaneo in human physiology was by no means new: as early as 1839, he wrote an article concerning phrenology, adopting a neutral stance on that emerging discipline by highlighting its flaws as well as indisputable potentialities.88 The reflections of Morton and his disciples, not only on the phenotypical and anthropometric aspects of the different human races, but also

136  On the complexities of the ethnogenesis on craniology, offer an occasion to re-read Cattaneo’s view on the capacity of cranial sizes to affect human intelligence and culture. Cattaneo demonstrated a greater critique toward the political implications of Morton and his school, rather than their scientific premises. Cattaneo, in effect, shares Morton’s polygenism, and does little to counter the idea of the different ‘races’ as different human species. Such a vision is consistent with his conception of multiple primeval human communities explained in his historical and linguistic essays. According to Morton, in fact, the human species originated from many centers, which were created ab initio in those regions of the Earth where the conditions were more favorable to their physical nature. Even the Caucasian ‘species’—Cattaneo observes—had multiple primordial centers, one located, for example, in Egypt.89 This hypothesis, which clearly contradicts both biblical and scientific monogenism, was for Cattaneo testified by the paleoanthropological evidence showing different human bodily and cranial structures.90 In this sense, Morton’s anthropological findings represent the further confirmation of Cattaneo’s hypotheses of humankind originally divided into small primitive tribes and gradually converging toward more numerous and complex communities.91 Consequently, Cattaneo’s assessments of the importance of Morton’s findings for history and ethnography were laudatory: With the theory of the plurality and indigenousness of types and their persistence since the primordial ages, Morton has provided each history with a solid basis. Every type can be considered indigenous unless we can demonstrate that it is foreign. And we can argue for its indigenousness when, by examining crania, we can demonstrate the geological date of its first appearance in its [respective] motherland. How much tiring nonsense and useless books would have Morton spared the educated public, had he appeared with his enlightening theory one century before!92 Such praising tones, however, gradually fade to negative remarks when anthropology conflates with linguistics, and worse, with nationalist biases. Cattaneo’s theory about the origin of humankind appears extremely consistent in its adherence to a polygenist thesis. His argument for sedentary populations was perhaps a counterweight to the excessive emphasis placed by Romantic authors on the migratory and nomadic nature of populations in antiquity and the Middle Ages. Against this backdrop, Cattaneo’s opinion on the phenotypical and anthropometric nature of modern Europeans was more aligned with the tenets of racial polygenism than many other authors: Europeans doubtlessly existed at the convergence of many strains of the Caucasian ‘race,’ ‘stock,’ or ‘class’ which also showed a certain resilience in the maintenance of primeval features.93 Thus, I would argue that in Cattaneo we see not only an emphasis on endurance throughout different generations of particular physical characteristics, but also a clear reference

On the complexities of the ethnogenesis  137 to certain regressive dynamics in the transmission (and conservation) of hereditary features within a given physical type. And by ‘type,’ it is evident that Cattaneo is referring to clearly identifiable physical traits that can be transmitted from one generation to another regardless of their national, linguistic, or cultural affiliation. Cattaneo, in fact, counters Morton’s evident Anglo-Saxonist methodological biases by affirming that, contrary to the opinions of American anthropologists, British populations could have hardly been defined as ‘Teutonic’ but rather were of a ‘physical type’ that is more akin to that of the ‘Celtic’ ethnicities: ‘We can certainly maintain’—he states—‘that the population of the British Isles is, in terms of blood, ten times more Celtic than Teutonic.’94 He continues: Each people is of a certain kind with a certain mixture; the aboriginal type can be rarely completely destroyed. Rather, when the mixture is composed of many and different elements like in the Italian and English case, the primitive type gradually survives and overwhelms them one by one. The English cranium does not only differ from the German one for its more oval shape; the difference also of the entire [British] person in its movements, style, and accents is so pronounced that nobody—even at the first sight—could mistake one for the other.95 Here, it seems that even Cattaneo, who to modern eyes is the least likely to conflate culture with biology—and, therefore, national identity with physical features—cedes a certain racialization of nationalities, at least in terms of what would be today called ‘psychosocial’ traits, especially when he refers to ‘movements,’ ‘style,’ and ‘accents.’ Does Cattaneo (who openly criticizes the overlapping of language and nationality with physical appearance) contradict himself, or are we confronting a more complex interpretative conundrum? Undoubtedly, Cattaneo’s view of the relationship between nature and culture was more complex than what we can currently imagine. The gradual emergence of physiology, craniology, and phrenology in the field of physical anthropology in the 1850s and 1860s further blurred the line between ‘culture’ and ‘nature’ by investigating the profound interrelation between the psychological and physiological functions in the human body, and therefore in human groups. This new epistemological revolution, or ‘materialization of mind,’ would eventually and profoundly impact the re-appropriation of the human body by nationalism.96 However, the main reason for this apparent contradiction here may best be found in an interpretation of the differences among human groups consistent with the basic tenets of the ‘theory of types.’ Our discourse now passes to the technicalities of Cattaneo’s prose and jargon. As we have seen, ‘type’ is a taxonomic criterion which, similar to ‘variety,’ is based on recognizable and classifiable physical features. Against this backdrop, we would be naturally inclined to consider ‘type’ as a premise

138  On the complexities of the ethnogenesis synonymous with the concept of ‘Caucasian’ or ‘Negro’ ‘types,’ given also the frequent association of the concept with the broader somatic divisions of humankind used by the natural history of man. Accordingly, Cattaneo’s reference to a ‘British’ or a ‘German’ type would therefore appear as blatantly inconsistent with the principles of this theory of the types as the main indicators of the broader geographical provenance of human beings, and not of an ethnocultural belonging. Yet, it is Cattaneo himself who, a few paragraphs before his comparison of the British and German crania (and their related impact on the current demeanor of these populations), expounds upon the relation of the concept of ‘type’ with the broader taxonomies by illustrating the findings of Morton. According to Morton, the comparative analysis of modern osteological remains with the iconographic and paleoanthropological evidence of antiquity demonstrated the persistence of a peculiar ‘type’ within each single population of the broader ‘Caucasian class.’97 In other words, though classifiable as ‘Caucasian,’ Egyptian skulls, mummies, statues, and paintings proved the persistence in the same territory—until the present time—of certain unaltered characteristics which seemed to overcome all subsequent different cultural, ethno-linguistic, and political changes. Accordingly, in this taxonomic ladder, the ‘type’ is a craniological category which is classified, for example, under the broader label of ‘Caucasian,’ ‘Negro,’ or ‘Mongolian’ ‘race’/‘class’/‘stock.’ However, the ‘type’ works as the marker of more specific geographical and, therefore, racial origin. After all, as Cattaneo points out, ‘Caucasian stock’ is nothing more than a taxonomic convention, since the ‘Caucasian group had multiple primordial centers’ which are reflected by the persistence of its several (Caucasian) ‘types.’ This model is almost inconceivable to our modern understanding of the Homo Sapiens as a species originating from a single progenitor; however, it is, conversely, perfectly consistent with the fundamental tenets of polygenism.98 Thus, as this theory suggests, only the unlikely event of the complete annihilation or removal of an aboriginal population could prevent the re-emergence of certain primordial physical characteristics (the ‘type’) in a given area. It is more than certain that Cattaneo fully embraced this approach to the genesis of man and human groups; he previously emphasized the tendency of the sedentariness of human groups, rather than their radical ‘transmigrations.’ From this perspective, therefore, we can imagine that Cattaneo might talk about a ‘British,’ ‘German,’ or any other ‘national type’ (characterized by certain craniological characteristics, but also by demeanor and even ‘accents’ in their living bodies) as long as the reference to a ‘nation’ is solely intended as the identifier of a given geographical area or human group in which only one type can prevail. In this sense, Cattaneo seems extremely rigid in countering the possibility of the persistence of different types within the same area since such a hypothesis would contradict the theory of types itself:

On the complexities of the ethnogenesis  139 The conflation of many types into one runs counter to the theory of types itself. However, combined with the idea that a bigger cerebral volume is the cause of national power, it caused among the German, the British, and the American [public] the dissemination of the eccentric and quixotic belief of being part of a unique and superhuman lineage which is predestined to rule the world and conquer and annihilate all other nations. This is a barbaric idea, concealed under the semblance of science. It is, therefore, time to disclose its barbarous emptiness.99 In these last sentences, Cattaneo unleashes the critique of Morton and his disciples by highlighting not only their conceptual and analytical flaws, but also their clear racist and nationalist biases purporting to demonstrate a profound physical kinship and derivation between the branches of an alleged ‘Anglo-Saxon’ or ‘Teutonic’ stock. As he insists, British and German people may share the same linguistic derivation, but the shape of their crania reveals that ‘British type’ belongs to physical derivation which cannot be the same of the Germans, but is rather more akin to the Irish people or other populations facing the Atlantic shores. How is it possible, remarks Cattaneo, to talk about a common ‘Anglo-Saxon blood’ binding British and Germans if the predominantly oval crania of the British Isles look completely different from the more rounded ones prevailing in Central Europe? He does not doubt that such a complete distortion of the theory of types was a result of the blatant jingoism and racism of the American anthropologists, who created an imaginary ‘Anglo- Saxon race’ by contradicting even their own findings. On top of this fabrication, he observes that American scholars purported to interpret the average larger volume of the ‘Teutonic’ skull as the ultimate proof of racial superiority, and the indicator of a superior ‘natural’ destiny vis-à-vis the rest of the humankind. To those who brag about the ‘superior’ British cranium—he maintains— scholars should remember the primitive and almost wild stage of Germanics and Celts when Africa and the Mediterranean basin were thriving with culture and civilizations. If the history of mankind could be explained through such a strict racial determinism, then why, as he concludes, had the superior ‘Teutonic’ family ‘slept into such an infecund torpor’ until it was re-awaken by the encounter with the supposedly ‘inferior’ Latins?100 Yet, Cattaneo adds, neither the manifest Anglo-Saxonist ideology of these authors nor their anti-Black racism can explain by themselves such a distortion of human history. On top of the ideological prejudices stands the blatant conflict of interest of some of the authors involved: if Morton was a Quaker from Pennsylvania—and consequently racist but compassionate for the enslaved Africans—his friends and scientific heirs belong to the slaveholding South, and ‘hold the interest, and therefore, the fears and biases of those who benefit from slavery.’101

140  On the complexities of the ethnogenesis Particularly deplorable appear, in his eyes, those works which under the guise of scientific respectability aim at nothing but demonizing and dehumanizing the ‘African race,’ and, among them, those tables posing the ‘negro type’ between the harmonious classical ideal-type of the statue of the Apollo Belvedere and the bestial chimpanzee.102 Paradoxically, the most vehement refutation of the nascent scientific racism can be found in the writings of a nationalist intellectual who was himself a staunch polygenist and resolved to save the ‘theory of types’ from the intrusion of politics. The following lines represent, I would argue, one of the most interesting pieces of evidence of the complexities that Italian nationalism in its liberal and democratic component had to face, that is, the conflict between universalistic claims and the desire to assert the national and cultural peculiarities of emerging nationhood: It is not important to us that a Negro appears in his forms closer to whichever animal species than to a God. We place the human being at the supreme level of a scale whose lowest degree are the inorganic monads and which then ascends up until the savage, that is, up to the speaking [human] being. This seems, at least to us, great progress already. And from the savage who is closer to the beasts [than to men], starts, at least in our opinion, another path which leads to the heroes of intellect and humanity. All nations which have produced some of these heroes are all worthy of praise; yet, all the others are equally sacrosanct since we do not recognize any hegemony in humankind. It is a good thing that Italian scientists do not have to preserve slavery: they can develop this new science of man from the point where the American genius had left it and from where, perhaps, could not lead it any further. [This science] is a necessary torch in the deep obscurity that still pervades the Italic origins. It is now time for Italian physicians to light it on and lead us through this unexplored path.104 It was now 1862. Much time had passed since the first studies had emerged on the origins of the Europeans and Italians. While Cattaneo may have previously assumed the duty to delve into a critical examination of the emerging comparative linguistics to counter Romantic mythopoeses, it appears evident at the onset of the 1860s that the boria di nazione (‘national vanity’), which he had repeatedly condemned, seems to have changed its guise once and for all.105 In the new cultural trend of Positivism, linguistics and history seem to no longer suffice, and new concepts and hypotheses about the origin and, most of all, about the ongoing transformation of mankind within the scala naturæ impose new challenges that only ‘scientists’ and ‘physicians’ are deemed able to undertake. Against this backdrop, it seems that the aging rationalist and anti-Romantic disciple of Romagnosi yields to a new generation of scholars who brought the examination of those ‘positive’ facts to a further step.

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Figure 4.1 The mention of the alleged ‘animal-like’ aspect of the ‘negro’ was a clear reference to the famous table in Types of Mankind stressing the similarities between the ‘negro’ and the chimpanzee. Furthermore, while the typological and craniological comparison stressed the ‘monkeyish’ appearance of an allegedly real-life ‘negro,’ the white race was represented by the idealized classical Apollo Belvedere statue.103

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Conclusions As we will see in subsequent chapters, by 1862, the nascent anthropology had already taken up Cattaneo’s suggestion, and resorted to typological analyses in order to reconstruct the genealogies of the main European ethnicities, among them the Italians. The ethnological research of Giustiniano Nicolucci would be characterized by an extensive use of vast craniological and osteological collections, and officially inaugurated the study of the prehistory in the Peninsula. In spite of Cattaneo’s invitation for craniological examination of the ‘positive’ data—and therefore a ‘medicalized’ approach to the concrete ‘fact’ embodied by osteological relics—Italian ethnologists of the 1850s and 1860s like Nicolucci seemed to dramatically diverge from the path traced by Cattaneo. Central, in fact, to Cattaneo’s analysis of ethnogeneses was the distinction between the investigation of the physical and the cultural origins of a given population: an approach that dated back to his mentor Romagnosi. Although it is extremely difficult to ascertain whether Cattaneo—along with many scholars of his age who were also familiar with phrenology and physiognomics—posited a clear-cut distinction between culturally acquired and biologically inherited traits, it is out of the question that he repeatedly warned his interlocutors not to conflate physical and linguistic ‘derivations.’ In other words, Romagnosi and Cattaneo both opposed the conflation between language and race, and doubted the very existence of ‘pure’ ethnoracial lineages by insisting, on the other hand, on the cosmopolitan nature of ethnogenetic and civilizational processes. With the advent in the 1850s of theories like Aryanism, race and language were again conflated: by this time, however, the examination of physical aspects seemed to have taken over the study of languages. The very notion of Aryan, in fact, born in comparative linguistics to describe the alleged ancestors of the Indo-Europeans would end up being used as a synonym of a racialist taxonomy as the equivalent of white or ‘Caucasian.’106 Although some scholars underlined the composite racial makeup of European nations, they also ended up encasing race within coherent linguistic and national genealogies to produce narratives about ethno-racial ‘superior’ groups. The characterization of the naked corporeality of race with psycho-moral and cultural aspects did not represent a novelty per se: we can hardly identify a nineteenth-century figure exempt from such dynamics, including Romagnosi and Cattaneo.107 On the other hand, the systematic overlapping of race, language, and nation, as well as the increased reliance on craniological taxonomies in order to defend the claims of an allegedly ‘superior’ race were light-years away from the critical approach to race of these two scholars. In contrast, liberal Italy seemed to completely forget the sobering legacy of Romagnosi and Cattaneo, and their studies seemed destined to remain an isolated voice in the broader history of European racialism.

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Notes 1 Gian Domenico Romagnosi, “Esame sulla Storia degli antichi popoli italiani di Giuseppe MICALI, in relazione ai primordj dell’italico incivilimento. Memoria di G.D. Romagnosi,” originally published in the Biblioteca Italiana, 69 (January – February – March 1833), 291, repr. “Esame della Storia degli antichi popoli italiani di Giuseppe MICALI, in relazione ai primordj dell’italico incivilimento. Memoria di G.D. Romagnosi” in Giandomenico Romagnosi, Opere del professor Gian Domenico Romagnosi, vol. 16, part 2 (Florence: Piatti, 1836), 318. 2 Romagnosi, “Esame della Storia degli antichi popoli italiani di Giuseppe MICALI, in relazione ai primordj dell’italico incivilimento.” 317–318. 3 Ettore A. Albertoni, ed., La vita degli stati e l’incivilimento dei popoli nel pensiero politico di Gian Domenico Romagnosi. Studi Romagnosi 1 (Milan: Giuffré, 1979), 7, 218. 4 Robertino Ghiringhelli and Franco Invernici, eds., Per conoscere Romagnosi (Milan: Unicopli, 1982), 30, 34, 113–115. 5 Ettore A. Albertoni, ed., I tempi e le opere di Gian Domenico Romagnosi. Studi Romagnosi 2 (Milan: Giuffré, 1990), xlv. Albertoni in the previous volume of the collected works of Romagnosi talks about a model of liberalism based on a limited government which is clearly different and counterposed to the Napoleonic experience. See Albertoni, La vita degli stati e l’incivilimento dei popoli nel pensiero politico di Gian Domenico Romagnosi, 17. 6 Albertoni, I tempi e le opere di Gian Domenico Romagnosi, xxiii–xxx. 7 Albertoni, La vita degli stati e l’incivilimento dei popoli nel pensiero politico di Gian Domenico Romagnosi, 17. 8 Ettore A. Albertoni, introduction to Per conoscere Romagnosi, 20. See, also, in the same volume, Robertino Ghiringhelli, “Gian Domenico Romagnosi e gli ‘Annali Universali di Statistica’” in Per conoscere Romagnosi, 190–191. 9 See Ghiringhelli and Invernici, Per conoscere Romagnosi, 22, 33, 91–92, 206–207. 10 Sandra Puccini, “Balbi, Romagnosi e Cattaneo. Sulla nascita dell’antropologia italiana del secondo Ottocento,” La Ricerca Folklorica 24 (November 1991): 121–129. 11 Gian Domenico Romagnosi, “Della poesia considerata rispetto alle diverse età delle nazioni,” Il Conciliatore. Giornale scientifico letterario 3 (September 1818): 12: Apropos literature, I am glad that the German authors cultivate their national pride by rendering the beginning of their modern civilization with gloomy and silent forests, towered and peaked castles, crowns of acorns, chivalric customs, and magic. Yet, in the same way, I would allow myself the liberty of illustrating the dawn of Italian civilization with the temples, the altars, and the Latin squares, as well as with the birth of political institutions and the classical mythologies. Just as we have political diplomacy, we also have a literary one, and parity and reciprocity are their fundamental law. This aspect is particularly important for epic poetry […]. I conclude this article by begging my fellow-citizens not to imitate the provincial ladies in terms of fashions and, instead, to thoroughly inform themselves about the customs and trends occurring in the capital. They should read the theoretical writings, and, most of all, the [most recent] production of northern European literature: soon they would notice that even if there is a piece of Romantic poetry, nobody has ever cared either theoretically or practically to be exclusively romantic or exclusively classic (at least in the way we today erroneously

144  On the complexities of the ethnogenesis intend these denominations). We would find, instead, a way to approach certain topics and to use mythological similitudes and allusions with a freedom that none of the Latin authors would have ever granted to himself. The recent book on Germany of Mrs. Staël offers several examples of that. 12 Giandomenico Romagnosi, “Delle fonti della cultura italiana,” Il Conciliatore. Giornale scientifico-letterario 12 (October 1818), repr. Giandomenico Romangnosi, Opere di G. D. Romagnosi. Riordinate e illustrate da Alessandro De Giorgi, ed. Alessandro De Giorgi, vol. 2, bk. 1 (Milan: Presso Perelli e Mariani Editori, 1844), 792 (emphasis added). 13 Giandomenico Romagnosi, Dell’indole e dei fattori dell’incivilimento: con esempio del suo risorgimento in Italia (Milan: Presso la Società degli Editori degli Annali Universali delle Scienze e dell’Industria, 1832), 7–8. 14 Romagnosi, ibid., 8–11. Sandra Puccini has pointed out that Adriano Balbi can be enumerated among the ones probably borrowing the term from Romagnosi. Yet, unlike the Emilian philosopher, Balbi seems to treat the concept of incivilimento as a synonym of ‘culture’ in the broader ‘anthropological’ understanding of the meaning, and, therefore, extended to all human groups without any hierarchical intent. See Puccini, “Balbi, Romagnosi e Cattaneo,” 122. 15 Romagnosi, Dell’indole e dei fattori dell’incivilimento, 8–11. 16 Romagnosi, ibid., 12. 17 Albertoni, I tempi e le opere di Gian Domenico Romagnosi, xlvi. For further details, see Ghiringhelli and Invernici, Per conoscere Romagnosi, 33,113, 192, 200–201. 18 Albertoni, La vita degli stati e l’incivilimento dei popoli nel pensiero politico di Gian Domenico Romagnosi, 19. 19 The meaning and etymology of this curious Romagnosi’s neologism is quite obscure. Surely derived from the Greek language, the suffix –foro/i literally means ‘carrier,’ while it is quite difficult to ascertain the root temo- which could probably be created from the lemma tèmis, that is, knowledge and law. For Romagnosi, the so-called temosfori are the religious chiefs who initiated the civilization process. On the Vichian source of this concept, see Sandra Puccini, ed., L’uomo e gli uomini. Scritti antropologici italiani dell’Ottocento (Rome: CISU, 1991), 257. On the Romagnosian idea of the civilizational process as a quintessentially ‘cosmopolitan’ dynamics, see Martin Thom, Republics, Nations, and Tribes (London: Verso, 1995), 278. 20 Romagnosi, Dell’indole e dei fattori dell’incivilimento, 105. 21 Romagnosi, “Esame della Storia degli antichi popoli italiani di Giuseppe MICALI, in relazione ai primordj dell’italico incivilimento,” 345. 22 Romagnosi, ibid., 325–337. 23 It is noteworthy, for example, his ethnographic classification of the Samnites, defined as ‘a nomadic population of Arabic stock.’ See Romagnosi, ibid., 358. 24 Antonino De Francesco, The Antiquity of the Italian Nation: The Cultural Origins of the Political Myth in Modern Italy, 1796–1943 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013), 86–87. As a matter of fact, as we will see in Chapters 5 and 6 of this book, Romagnosi’s hypothesis about the Northern African origin of the Italic civilization was far from being ignored by the Risorgimento scholars and intellectuals. 25 Again, the absence of any reference, for a man claiming to ground his analysis in ‘positive facts’ to comparative linguistics and the hypothesis of a common Indo-European linguistic ancestor, see Giandomenico Romagnosi, “Storia degli antichi popoli italiani, di Giuseppe MICALI.—Firenze, 1832, tipografia all’insegna di Dante, tomi tre in 8.° con atlante. Articolo Primo” Biblioteca Italiana 69 (January – February – March 1833), 146–157, repr. Romagnosi, “Sulla Storia degli antichi popoli italiani di Giuseppe Micali, Firenze, 1832, tomi tre

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37 38 39

40

in 8° con atlante,” in Romagnosi, Opere del Professor Gian Domenico Romagnosi, vol. 16, part 2, 299–311. What, in fact, Micali and Romagnosi seem both to take for granted, among other things, is the total verisimilitude of ancient sculptures and figurative arts, without considering the influence of particular iconographic canons, tastes, and the influxes in affecting the representation of the human figure. Romagnosi, “Esame della Storia degli antichi popoli italiani di Giuseppe MICALI, in relazione ai primordj dell’italico incivilimento,” 327. Romagnosi, ibid. With respect to the blackness of Jupiter and Bacchus, see Romagnosi, ibid., 329 (emphasis added). On the notion of facial angle, systematized and popularized by the Dutch anatomist Petrus Camper (1722–1789), see Francisco Bethencourt, Racisms: From the Crusades to the Twentieth Century (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2013), 258–262. The idea of a strong correlation between physical ‘race’ and the geographical provenance was first systematized by the French naturalist Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon (1707–1788). See Nicholas Hudson, “From Nation to Race: The Origin of Racial Classification in Eighteenth-Century Thought,” Eighteenth Century Studies 29, no. 3 (1996): 254–255. See Richard McMahon, The Races of Europe: Construction of the National Identities in Social Sciences, 1839–1939 (London: Palgrave McMillan, 2016), 29–30, 66, 94, 106. Romagnosi, Dell’indole e dei fattori dell’incivilimento, 146–147. Giandomenico Romagnosi, “Delle fonti della cultura italiana,” Il Conciliatore. Giornale scientifico-letterario 12 (October 1818), repr. Romagnosi, Opere di G. D. Romagnosi riordinate e illustrate da Alessandro De Giorgi, vol. 2, 794. Romagnosi did not seem to share the anti-Roman tropes of Micali, or the antiLombard clichés of the Catholic Liberals: he considered, in fact, Romanization a positive process for the cultural amalgamation and development of Italy, and had a positive view of the Lombards. See Romagnosi, Dell’indole e dei fattori dell’incivilimento, 112–136; 140–147. Giandomenico Romagnosi, “Compendio storico della grande emigrazione dei popoli barbari e delle migrazioni principali accadute nell’antico mondo dopo questa epoca (di L. C. D. R.) vol. in 8° - Brusselles P.I. Demat Stampatore,” Il Conciliatore. Giornale scientifico letterario 12 (October 1818), 32. Carlo Cattaneo, “Sul principio istorico delle lingue europee,” Originally published in Il Politecnico 4, no. 24 (1841): 560–596 as a review of the Atlante linguistico d’Europa by Bernardino Biondelli, repr. Carlo Cattaneo, Opere scelte, vol. 2, Milano e l’Europa. Scritti 1839–1846, ed. Delia Castelnuovo-Frigessi (Turin: Einaudi, 1972), 196. On Cattaneo’s influence in Italy, see Franco Della Peruta, Carlo Cattaneo politico (Milano: Franco Angeli, 2002); Delia Castelnuovo-Frigessi, introduction to Carlo Cattaneo, Opere Scelte, vol. 1, Industria e scienza nuova. Scritti 1833–1839, ed. Delia Castelnuovo-Frigessi (Turin: Einaudi, 1972), lxx–lxxv. Cattaneo never wrote, however, a systematized work on federalism, see Frigessi, ibid., lviii–lix. Della Peruta, Carlo Cattaneo politico, 38–39. On Romagnosi and the Italian ‘races,’ see Thom, Republics, Nations, and Tribes, 281, 300. Sebastiano Timpanaro, Classicismo e Illuminismo nell’Ottocento italiano. Testo critico con aggiunta di saggi e annotazioni autografe., ed. Corrado Pestelli, pref. by Gino Tellini. (Florence: Le lettere, 2011) 356. See, also, Thom, Republics, Nations, and Tribes, 244. Carlo Cattaneo, “Della Sardegna antica e moderna,” originally published in “Di varie opere sulla Sardegna,” Il Politecnico 4, no. 21 (1840): 219–273, repr. Cattaneo, Opere scelte, vol. 2, Milano e l’Europa. Scritti 1839–1846, 159.

146  On the complexities of the ethnogenesis 41 Castelnuovo-Frigessi, introduction to Carlo Cattaneo, Opere Scelte, vol. 1, Industria e scienza nuova. Scritti 1833–1839, xxix. 42 Castelnuovo-Frigessi, ibid., xlv. 43 Castelnuovo-Frigessi, ibid., xlvi. 44 Castelnuovo-Frigessi, ibid., xlv. Not to mention the fact that Cattaneo, as Timpanaro notes, also expressed theoretical and political reservation concerning the emerging positivist paradigm; see Timpanaro Classicismo e Illuminismo nell’Ottocento italiano, 364–365. 45 It is well-known, for example, his debate with the younger Graziadio Isaia Ascoli, founder of Italian glottology. See Carlo Cattaneo, Epistolario, ed. Rinaldo Caddeo, vol. 4 (Florence: Barbera, 1956), 10–13; 597–600. See, also Timpanaro, Classicismo e Illuminismo nell’Ottocento italiano, 328–329. 46 Castelnuovo-Frigessi, introduction to Carlo Cattaneo, Opere Scelte, vol. 1, Industria e scienza nuova. Scritti 1833–1839, xxvi. See, also Della Peruta, Carlo Cattaneo politico, 12. 47 Albertoni, I tempi e le opere di Gian Domenico Romagnosi. Studi Romagnosi 2, xlii. 48 Della Peruta, Carlo Cattaneo politico, 34. On the rebuttal of a state of nature and a foundational covenant, see Carlo Cattaneo, Interdizioni Israelitiche, originally published as “Ricerche economiche sulle interdizioni imposte dalla legge civile agli Israeliti,” Annali di Giurisprudenza pratica 23 (1836) and then in Cattaneo, Memorie di economia publica dal 1833 al 1860, vol. 1 (Milano: Sanvito, 1860), 1–143. Now repr. Cattaneo, Opere Scelte, vol. 1, Industria e scienza nuova. Scritti 1833–1839, 259. 49 Della Peruta, Carlo Cattaneo politico, 18–35; Castelnuovo-Frigessi, introduction to Carlo Cattaneo, Opere Scelte, vol. 1, Industria e scienza nuova. Scritti 1833– 1839, x, xiv. Martin Thom, “Unity and Confederation in the Italian Risorgimento,” in Writing National Histories: Western Europe since 1800, eds. Berger, Stefan, Mark Donovan, and Kevin Passmore (London: Routledge, 2002), 77. 50 Della Peruta, Carlo Cattaneo politico, 31; Castelnuovo-Frigessi, ibid., xxxvii; Thom, Republics, Nations, and Tribes, 243–244. 51 Della Peruta, ibid., 43; Castelnuovo-Frigessi, ibid., xxvi–xxviii. 52 Castelnuovo-Frigessi, introduction to Carlo Cattaneo, Opere Scelte, vol. 1, Industria e scienza nuova. Scritti 1833–1839, xxviii–xxix. 53 Carlo Cattaneo, “Notizie naturali e civili su la Lombardia,” originally published in the miscellaneous volume Notizie naturali e civili su la Lombardia, vol. 1 (Milan: Bernardoni, 1844), xi–xcii, repr. Carlo Cattaneo, Opere scelte, vol. 2, Milano e l’Europa. Scritti 1839–1846, ed. Castelnuovo-Frigessi, 390. 54 Cattaneo, “Sul principio istorico delle lingue europee,” 169; Timpanaro, Classicismo e Illuminismo nell’Ottocento italiano, 363–364; Thom, Republics, Nations, and Tribes, 224. 55 Timpanaro, Classicismo e Illuminismo nell’Ottocento italiano, 360. 56 Della Peruta, Carlo Cattaneo politico, 35; Carlo Cattaneo “Del nesso tra la lingua valaca e l’italiana,” originally published as, “Nesso della nazione e della lingua valacca con l’italiana,” Annali Universali di Statistica, Economia pubblica, Storia, Viaggi e Commercio 52, no. 155, (May 1837): 129–157, repr. Carlo Cattaneo, Opere scelte, vol. 1, Industria e scienza nuova. Scritti 1833–1839, 303; Carlo Cattaneo, “Della conquista d’Inghilterra pei Normanni,” originally published in Il Politecnico 2, no.12 (December 1839): 536–582 as a review of Augustin Thierry’s Histoire de la conquête d’Angleterre par les Normands, de ses causes et de ses suites jusqu’a nos jours en Angleterre, en Ecosse, en Irlande et sur le Continent (1825), and then republished in Cattaneo, Alcuni scritti, vol. 2 (Milan: Borroni Scotti, 1846), 53–99; repr. Cattaneo, Opere scelte, vol. 2, Milano e l’Europa. Scritti 1839–1846, 5.

On the complexities of the ethnogenesis  147 57 Sebastiano Timpanaro, Sulla linguistica dell’Ottocento (Bologna: Il Mulino, 2005), 11, 25–26, 48, 143. 58 Della Peruta, Carlo Cattaneo politico, 39; Cattaneo, “Sul principio istorico delle lingue europee,” 161–163, 200; Timpanaro, Classicismo e Illuminismo nell’Ottocento italiano, 355. 59 The Venetian linguist and archaeologist Bernardino Biondelli (1804–1886) introduced Cattaneo to the Indo-European linguistics. On his role of introducing Cattaneo to Indo-European studies, see Timpanaro, Sulla linguistica dell’Ottocento, 111; Thom, Republics, Nations, and Tribes, 301. 60 On the flourishing of the Orientalistica and comparative linguistics during the 1840s in Italy, and, particularly, the Kingdom of Sardinia, see Fabrizio De Donno, Italian Orientalism: Nationhood, Cosmopolitanism, and the Cultural Politics of Identity (Oxford: Peter Lang, 2019), 39–45. 61 Only in the late 1840s and 1850s did the new disciplines seem to acquire institutional sanction with the establishment of ‘Indo-Germanic’ studies and teachings in the Kingdom of Sardinia. With respect to the Italian opposition to Indo-European comparative linguistics, see also the democratic leader Giuseppe Mazzini condemned the filosofie disgregatrici of the North. See Timpanaro, Sulla linguistica dell’Ottocento, 109–110, 114–115, 119. Unlike Cattaneo, however, Biondelli accepted the conflation between stocks and languages, and manifested clear racist attitudes toward the non-European populations. Timpanaro, Classicismo e Illuminismo nell’Ottocento italiano, 347–349. 62 Cattaneo, “Sul principio istorico delle lingue europee,” 169; Thom, Republics, Nations, and Tribes, 275. For the original passage in the Scienza Nuova, see Giambattista Vico, Autobiografia; Poesie; Scienza Nuova, ed. Pasquale Soccio (Milan: Garzanti, 1983), 328 and ff. 63 Timpanaro Classicismo e Illuminismo nell’Ottocento italiano, 359–360. 64 Cattaneo, “Sul principio istorico delle lingue europee,” 174–175. 65 Originally published in Il Politecnico 4, no. 24 (1841), 560–596 as a review of the Atlante linguistico d’Europa by Bernardino Biondelli. For our reference, however, we continue to use the reprinted version in Cattaneo, Opere Scelte, vol. 2, Milano e l’Europa. Scritti 1839–1846. 66 Cattaneo, “Sul principio istorico delle lingue europee,” 177. 67 Cattaneo, ibid., 178–179. 68 Cattaneo, ibid., 178. 69 Timpanaro, Classicismo e Illuminismo nell’Ottocento italiano, 353. 70 Cattaneo, “Sul principio istorico delle lingue europee,” 199–200. 71 Cattaneo, ibid., 183–194. 72 Timpanaro, Classicismo e Illuminismo nell’Ottocento italiano, 342–345. For further information regarding the life and the works of Scipione Maffei (1675– 1755), see “Maffei, Scipione” Enciclopedia Treccani http://www.treccani.it/ enciclopedia/scipione-maffei_%28Dizionario-Biografico%29/ Last accessed May 20, 2020. 73 Timpanaro, ibid., 345. See also Puccini, “Balbi, Romagnosi e Cattaneo,” 125. 74 Carlo Cattaneo, “Del nesso tra la lingua valaca e l’italiana,” 303; Cattaneo, “Della conquista d’Inghilterra pei Normanni,” 4; Thom, Republics, Nations, and Tribes, 7, 301; Ian Wood, The Modern Origins of the Early Middle Ages (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013), 77, 100, 103. 75 Timpanaro, Classicismo e Illuminismo nell’Ottocento italiano, 342–345; Cattaneo, “Della Sardegna antica e moderna,” 105; Cattaneo, “Sul Principio istorico delle lingue europee,” 193–194; Cattaneo, “Notizie naturali e civili su la Lombardia,” 384–385, 389.

148  On the complexities of the ethnogenesis 76 Cattaneo, “Notizie naturali e civili su la Lombardia,” 392–393. Sismondi was one of the authors who claimed the Etruscans to be the founders of Italian municipalism. See Wood, The Modern Origins of the Early Middle Ages, 86. 77 Cattaneo, “Notizie naturali e civili su la Lombardia,” 397–398. 78 Carlo Cattaneo, “La città considerata come principio ideale delle istorie italiane,” originally published in Il Crepuscolo in four parts in the issues 42, 44, 50, and 52 (October 17, October 31, December 12, and December 16, 1858, 657–659, 689–693, 785–790, 817–821); repr. Carlo Cattaneo, Opere Scelte, vol. 4, Storia universale e ideologia delle genti. Scritti 1852–1864, ed. Delia CastelnuovoFrigessi (Turin: Einaudi, 1972), 89–90. 79 Timpanaro, Classicismo e Illuminismo nell’Ottocento italiano, 336–337. 80 Cattaneo, “Della conquista d’Inghilterra pei Normanni,” 12; Cattaneo, “Notizie naturali e civili su la Lombardia,” 413. On the scant number of Lombards and their diverse ethnic makeup, see Cattaneo, “La città considerata come principio ideale delle istorie italiane,” 96–97. 81 Cattaneo thought, for example, that the Germanic language mainly influenced military and war-related jargon, while Latin remained the more used for the rest of the civil life. See Timpanaro, Classicismo e Illuminismo nell’Ottocento italiano, 340. 82 Cattaneo, “La città considerata come principio ideale delle istorie italiane,” 95–96. 83 Cattaneo, “Notizie naturali e civili su la Lombardia,” 412. 84 Cattaneo, “Sul principio istorico delle lingue europee,” 200. 85 Originally published as “Tipi del genere umano,” Il Politecnico 14, no. 75 (September 1862): 336–357 as a book review of Types of Mankind or Ethnological Researches, based upon the Ancient Monuments, Painting, Sculptures, and Crania of Races, and upon Their Natural, Geographical, Philological, and Biblical History: illustrated by selections from the unedited papers of Samuel George Morton, M.D. and by additional contributions from Prof. L. Agassiz, U.D.; W. Usher, M.D.; Prof. H.S. Patterson, M.D.: J. C. Nott, M. D. and George R. Gliddon, London-Philadelphia, 1854. References and citations are taken, if not explicitly by Cattaneo, from the 8th edition by J. B. Lippincott & Co., Philadelphia, Trübner & Co., London 1857. Now repr. Cattaneo, Opere scelte, vol. 4, Storia universale e ideologia delle genti. Scritti 1852–1864, 355–383. 86 On the influence of Morton and his school, see Michael Banton, Racial Theories (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2009), 53 and ff.; Bethencourt, Racisms, 283 and ff.; James Poskett, “National Types: The Transatlantic Publication and Reception of Crania Americana (1839),” History of Science 53, no. 3 (2015): 264. 87 It must be noted that this review was published in September 1862, at the height of the crisis concerning the Emancipation Proclamation during the U.S. Civil War. Cattaneo, like almost all of Risorgimento intelligentsia, supported the Union’s war effort against the slaveholding élites of the Confederacy. Carlo Cattaneo is indicated by many scholars—Biagini among others—as the most perceptive analyst of the issue of slavery. For his sharp and detached analyses, as well as his lack of any public comment on the Civil War, Cattaneo has been often portrayed as the opposite of Garibaldi’s and Mazzini’s militant Unionism. Rather, it should be useful to find the connections and similarities among such figures, since they were all pro-Union. For example, Biagini proves that, besides their different approaches and standpoints, Cattaneo ensured that Lincoln received a copy of Mazzini’s writings. See Eugenio F. Biagini, “‘The Principle of Humanity’: Lincoln in Germany and Italy, 1859–1865,” in The Global Lincoln, eds. Richard Carwardine and Jay Sexton (Oxford: Oxford University

On the complexities of the ethnogenesis  149

88 89

90 91

92 93 94 95 96 97 98 99 100 101 102 103 104 105

106

Press, 2011), 77, 9. For further information about Italian pro-Unionism, see Giorgio Spini, “I democratici e la guerra civile americana.” Rassegna Storica Toscana 11, no. 1 (1965): 153–171; Tiziano Bonazzi and Carlo Galli, eds., La guerra civile americana vista dall’Europa (Bologna: Il Mulino, 2004); David Armitage, Thomas Bender, Leslie Butler, Don H. Doyle, Susan-Mary Grant, Charles S. Mayer, Jörg Nagler, Paul Quigley, and Jay Sexton, “Interchange: Nationalism and Internationalism in the Era of the Civil War,” The Journal of American History 98, no. 2 (September 2011): 455–489; Don H. Doyle, ed. American Civil Wars: The United States, Latin American, Europe, and the Crisis of the 1860s (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2017); Don H. Doyle, The Cause of All Nations: An International History of the American Civil War (New York: Basic Books, 2017). Cattaneo, Carlo, and Giuseppe Canziani, “Della frenologia, lettera del Cav. Giuseppe Frank” Il Politecnico 2, no. 7 (1839): 67–86. For further details, see Puccini, L’uomo e gli uomini, 53–54. Carlo Cattaneo, “Tipi del genere umano,” 362–366. Although adopting the notion of ‘Caucasian’ in order to classify the white European type, Cattaneo discusses in his review of Morton the accuracy of such a term, based on the assumption that the white ‘type’ generated in many places on Earth—among them, for example, Egypt—rather than the Caucasus only. Here, it is evident that Cattaneo intended the category of Caucasian as a marker of an ethnogenetic process that occurred in the Caucasian region. On the complex stratification of theories originating the idea of a Caucasian race, see Hannah F. Augstein, “From the Land of the Bible to the Caucasus and Beyond,” in Race, Science and Medicine, 1700–1960, eds., Waltraud Ernst and Bernard Harris (London: Routledge, 1999), 58–79. Cattaneo, “Tipi del genere umano,” 370. Cattaneo, ibid., 380: ‘Accordingly, we would like to reformulate the famous statement by the renowned Agassiz, according to which “mankind were created in nations” (p. 111), by arguing that humankind firstly appeared in small tribes, more or less diverse in their appearance, as emerges from the examination of their most ancient crania: [these tribes] more or less prone to coalesce—when the environment and occasions were favorable—into numerous nations.’ Cattaneo, “Tipi del genere umano,” 379 (emphasis added). Cattaneo, ibid., 362–366. Cattaneo, ibid., 378. Cattaneo, ibid., 378 (emphasis added). James Poskett, “National Types,” 264–295; McMahon, The Races of Europe, 123. Cattaneo, “Tipi del genere umano,” 362. Cattaneo, ibid., 364. Cattaneo, ibid., 380 (emphasis added). Cattaneo, ibid., 380–382. Cattaneo, ibid. Cattaneo, ibid. For the tables, see Nott, Gliddon, Types of Mankind in www.archive.org, p. 458. Last accessed January 9, 2019. Cattaneo, ibid., 383. Cattaneo, ibid., 372. On Cattaneo’s repeated criticism of the boria nazionale, see, also Frigessi, introduction to Carlo Cattaneo, Opere Scelte, vol. 1, Industria e scienza nuova. Scritti 1833–1839, xxii. See, also, in the same volume, Carlo Cattaneo, “Del nesso tra la lingua valaca e l’italiana,” 299. See Stefan Arvidsson, Aryan Idols: Indo-European Mythology as Ideology and Science (Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press, 2006), 21. On the diffusion of Aryanism in Italy, see Chapter 6 of this book.

150  On the complexities of the ethnogenesis The tendency to conflate biological and ethno-linguistic descent was, as noted, 107 already at work in the previous decades; with Positivism, however, the relationship was, in a certain sense, overturned, and the physical and physiological dimension affected the cultural and moral one, and not vice-versa. See Alberto Baldi, “Antropologia italiana della seconda metà dell’Ottocento: dagli interessi per la cultura delle popolazioni ‘altre’ alle ricerche in ambito folklorico,” in Alle origini dell’antropologia italiana: Giustiniano Nicolucci e il suo tempo, eds., Francesco Fedele and Alberto Baldi (Naples: Guida, 1988), 124; Hudson, “From Nation to Race,” 258; Arvidsson, Aryan Idols, 43–55, 61–62.

5

Reconsidering primacy and national genealogies ‘Nation’ and ‘race’ in the debate among moderates, 1843–1846

In the preceding chapters, we have observed that the concept of race increasingly became an essential tool in providing the idea of nation with that ‘material’ essence paramount to the identification and demands of a new political body: the Italian nation-state. Vincenzo Cuoco relied on the myth of the Antiqua Sapientia Italica to antedate the Italian ethnogenesis to the twelfth century BCE, and transformed the advanced superior Pelasgians into a proper Italian nationality ante litteram. Cuoco’s idea of race remained vague, grounded in traditional understandings as ‘stock,’ ‘lineage,’ or ‘bloodline,’ although, for the first time, the origins of Italian ‘stock’ were traced to the broader European ethnogenesis originating from the Eurasian steppes. With Micali, the taxonomies of the nascent physical anthropology were employed to visually identify an Italo-Etruscan ‘type,’ thereby proving the persistence and the autochthony of a national bloodline throughout millennia. Conversely, typological racialism was employed by Romagnosi and Cattaneo to counter the idea of an autochthonous Italian civilizational development. They both stress, on the other hand, the different paths of biological, linguistic, and cultural derivation. However, this increasing ‘epidermalization’ of race was missing in the writings of Catholic Neo-Guelph authors such as Alessandro Manzoni, Carlo Troya, and Gino Capponi. Well into the 1840s, these three intellectuals appeared indifferent to—if not openly wary of—embedding national history in the natural science of man. I would argue that this resistance was due to the conflicting relation between some anthropological schools and the biblical narrative. But not all Catholic liberal thinkers were hostile toward the new ‘science’ of race. Two pivotal figures of the 1840s Catholic Moderatismo, Vincenzo Gioberti and Cesare Balbo, worked to produce national histories in which the new ethno-anthropological disciplines and Christian faith blended harmoniously together, and in which ethnology reinforced and confirmed biblical Creationism. Despite several inconsistencies, the resulting narrative managed to portray the Italian ‘race’ as the result of a long genealogical and providential path, starting with the first Noachian ‘stocks’ and the ‘physiological’ diversification of humankind, and culminating in the classical world and the palingenetic experience of Roman Catholicism. Gioberti, in

152  Reconsidering primacy particular, eclectically combined the account of Genesis and the antiquarian ‘primacy’ tradition with Indo-Europeanism and the physical anthropology of Georges Cuvier and James Cowles Prichard. Balbo, although countering the idea of a ‘Pelasgo-Italian’ primacy, further relied on racialism and typology to explain the birth of the Italian nation. In short, these authors revamped the old genealogies of the biblical and antiquarian traditions to place them in a new naturalist frame, and the national identity was further imprinted in the history—and the bodies—of the Italians. A common culture, language, and history but, most of all, common blood were all subsumed in a common physical and craniological ‘type’ both as a result and evidence of their shared interaction. Such further ‘biologization’ of the nation reinforced the idea that an identified race was the natural ‘basis’ for nationhood: this was the core of Giacomo Durando’s response to the national mythopoeses of Gioberti and Balbo. In fact, Durando, though paying homage to these important intellectuals, urged Italian nationalists to abandon the cult of the past, finding instead in the ‘natural’ elements and ‘facts’ (such as ‘race’) the basis for a stable nation-building path and the ultimate demise of the ‘artificial’ Restoration order. Although Durando never lingered on crania, bodies, or other anthropometric aspects of race, in his proposal for future Italian statehood, he saw race as the concrete, material, quantifiable, and, most of all, modifiable and malleable material basis for the nation-building process. With Durando, the inquiry into the race of Italians went beyond the mere identification of a national genealogy to propose an actual improvement of the national ‘stock’ understood in almost eugenic terms.

The moderate moment The Italians must then persuade themselves that the institutions and the [political] reforms of the Peninsula must be modeled on its [present] conditions, as in agriculture different sowing techniques are used for different soils. They should not imitate anybody inasmuch the Pelasgian lineage, to which they belong, is the ruling stock of the greater Japhetic family of the Indo-Germanic branch. Hence, their lineage, by towering over any other stocks of Europe in terms of civilization, antiquity, and any other gift of Providence, must not morally submit to anybody else. And since the present is rooted in the past, the Italian statesman must have a deep and detailed knowledge of history and, I would say, of the political archaeology of the nation in order to identify those parts which are still alive and thriving, and which are a sort of basis for the new developments.1 The question which has often intrigued post-1945 scholars of modern Italian history and of the Risorgimento in particular is why and how the Moderatismo, or Catholic conservative Liberalism, managed to succeed where

Reconsidering primacy  153 other preceding movements failed. According to some historians, the moderati were capable of drawing into the nationalist rank-and-file large strata of Italian élites and middle classes which had previously remained neutral, if not openly hostile, to the national cause.2 Several long-term factors, together with specific contingencies, contributed to the fortune of Moderatismo in the 1840s. Undoubtedly, the first factor resided, as the historian Giorgio Candeloro emphasized, in the gradual but inexorable incompatibility between the economic and social changes that occurred in the 1830s and 1840s Italy, due to the status quo as sanctioned by the Congress of Vienna. From this perspective, he argued, Liberalism obtained a foothold in the upper and middle classes first as a cultural movement before it did so as a political movement.3 This explains, why the affirmation of the ‘moderates’ was ultimately characterized by an intense editorial and publishing activity, then the flourishing of local, followed by nationwide associations and cultural events, like the Congressi degli scienziati italiani, which took place almost annually between 1839 and 1847.4 In this emerging economic, cultural, and class milieu, the revolutionary choice became less attractive as a series of failed insurrections and coups accumulated, and their sour lesson—the ‘harsh school of misfortune,’ as liberal statesman Massimo d’Azeglio defined it—pushed educated groups to look for alternative solutions.5 Another aspect to be taken into account was the changing international context, especially after the success of the 1830 French July Monarchy, as well as the Liberal Wars in Portugal (1828–1834), and the First Carlist War in Spain (1833–1840). France, in particular, again became a hotspot for international military voluntarism across Europe, and the Iberian conflicts contributed to converting many young enthusiastic volunteers—and among them Giacomo Durando—into moderate liberals.6 Yet, other major developments occurred not only with France at the epicenter, but within the Catholic world itself. Although the shaping of Catholic Liberalism and nationalism cannot be thoroughly illustrated here, crucial to this transformation was the Catholic ‘counter-mobilization’ triggered by the Revolution and Napoleonic regime. Against this backdrop, the European Catholic intelligentsia formulated its own nationalist discourse, and even its own ‘compromise’ with Liberalism. In short, the Catholic laity, along with a notable fraction of the clergy elaborated their own ‘version’ of political modernity, and attempted to frame the unavoidable process of political participation of the masses in new theoretical and political terms. And they could rely on a steady process of de-secularization and ‘return to faith’ of wider strata of European bourgeoisie since the early Restoration, which favored the assimilation of Christian concepts and symbolism into nationalism.7 In France, the Catholic philosopher Felicité de Lamennais (1782–1854)—fully conversant with Italian Neo-Guelph authors—found himself in a polemic with Pope Gregorius XVI’s Ultramontanism, and in his Paroles d’un croyant (1834) urged for a synthesis between Catholicism and Liberalism. In Italy, the priest Antonio Rosmini-Serbati (1797–1855) in Le cinque piaghe della

154  Reconsidering primacy Santa Chiesa (1832–1833, published posthumously in 1849) criticized the condition of Roman curia and the clergy, and advocated for the reformation of the Church.8 In short, with the affirmation of Moderatismo, it seemed that for the first time a significant portion of Italian Catholicism, although still wary of the revolution, had estranged itself from Legitimism to gradually embrace Liberalism and its own path to nation-building.9 Along with these long-term developments, a few contingent factors should be taken into account, such as the easing of censorship in the Italian states following 1840.10 Another factor contributing to the spread of moderate ideas was the generational turnover of the Risorgimento leadership, which occurred between 1837 and 1844 as many of the former leaders of the revolutionary and early Restoration era either died or withdrew from active political life. In the meantime, a new generation of patrioti was entering the political arena, and a significant portion of future ‘moderates’ was already increasing the ranks of military volunteerism, as was the case with Durando, among others.11 In short, when Gioberti decided to print his voluminous Primato, the social, political, and even demographic conditions seemed to work in his favor.

The ‘primacy’ of the ‘Japhetic-Pelasgian’ stock The opinion maker Gioberti was the main ‘opinion-maker’ in the moderate camp: an intellectual able to arouse a nationwide debate on the future of Italy and to ‘convert’ large strata of the Catholic public (and, more interestingly, clergy) to nationalism.12 Among the reasons for the success of his major work, Del primato morale e civile degli italiani (1843) stood its indisputable capacity for meeting the expectations developed during the previous decade in Italian society. In his voluminous treatise, Gioberti gathered and combined through a convincing, though not always coherent, argument elements from both older and more recent culture and ideology. In the Primato, accepted erudite myths about Italic ‘primacy,’ Catholic and Neo-Guelph theories concerning papal theocracy, Christian Providentialism, and biblical and Christological figures were skillfully combined with the idea of progress and the naturalistic conception of nations and their own inherent ‘missions.’13 From this perspective, Gioberti was able to frame new racial taxonomies within older biblical genealogies, and integrate the idea of an Italian national ‘Pelasgian’ ‘primacy’ within the biblical figure of the ‘chosen people.’ This eclectic approach reveals the educational and political path of Gioberti, who embraced the study of philosophy and the main authors of the Enlightenment and Romanticism after completing seminary and his ordination. In these years, Gioberti shifted from his initial republican sympathies to a more nuanced moderate—although sui generis—Liberalism, which would eventually cost him his job and see him exiled from his native Kingdom of Sardinia in 1833.14

Reconsidering primacy  155 In the Primato, reflections on the need for the reformation of papacy and Roman Catholicism combined with demands for the resolution of the Italian ‘question.’ Gioberti emphasized how the state of subjugation and political decline of Italy contrasted with its glorious past, and most of all with its divine mission bestowed upon Italy as the seat of Roman Catholicism. For Gioberti, the ‘resurrection’ of Italy would have occurred only if this nation—created by God and assigned with a specific mission—became people, meaning a ‘politically structured’ community renewed in compliance with its tradition and its ‘nature.’15 In discussing the Italian people and national unity, he stated: I think that the principle of Italian unity must be real, concrete, alive and well-rooted [in the tradition] and not abstract and unsubstantiated; since the states cannot be governed with chimeras or abstractions. By principle of unity we mean the germ and the cause of it, that is, in other words, a unity which is preexisting and concrete, and which would become national and political and which contains the premises of this becoming. Many claim to find this unity among the Italian people, which is, in my opinion, more wishful thinking than fact, an assumption and not a reality, a name, and not a thing, and I strongly doubt we could even find a correct definition of it in the vocabulary. We have, in fact, an Italian land and an Italian stock bounded by one blood, one religion, and one illustrious written language; yet divided by different governments, laws, institutions, customs, dialects, allegiances, and habits. This bond [of blood, religion, written language etc.] makes this stock a potential people; whereas the division prevents them to be one in act.16 In a certain sense, Gioberti was aware of the tensions of the nationalist discourse because he acknowledged the historical non-existence of Italian people juridically ‘reified’ by the presence of the state. On the other hand, however, he assumed that there was an Italian nation—a God-made ‘natural’ entity that pre-existed the people. By doing so, Gioberti overturned the relationship between people and nation, making the first a derivation of the second, and the nation a fattura divina (‘creation of God’), while the people became a fattura del sovrano (‘creation of the sovereign’), a political construction (and not vice-versa, as we might tend to believe today).17 As the historian Francesco Traniello has noted, Gioberti presented the nation, rather than the people, as the legitimizing factor for political sovereignty, and by doing so, also aimed to bypass the reference to ‘Italian people’ which, by having never existed, failed to constitute a valid basis for reclaiming statehood.18 The rediscovery of a national past, and therefore of a nation with its distinctive cultural and natural traits, was the guiding thread of the Primato, which identified several themes, from Italian cultural and civilizational superiority to Roman Catholicism. Gioberti’s primary aim was to ‘reawaken’

156  Reconsidering primacy Italian national pride, and the mythopoesis of the Italo-Pelasgian ‘primacy’ was finalized to such a goal.19 This also explains why the Primato embeds Italian history within a long thread of ‘primacies’ ranging from the primeval biblical ‘Japhetic’ racial provenance to the cultural ‘Etruscan-Pelasgian’ superior ‘genius,’ the Roman empire, and, of course, to Roman Catholicism and the papacy. If, on the one hand, the Primato relied on old tropes and myths of the Italian tradition, then, on the other, the idea of a national ‘mission’ was a derivation of French Romanticism which had already echoed in the Peninsula through the writings of Giuseppe Mazzini. In this sense, Gioberti simply re-elaborated and expanded upon this idea, and posited Roman Catholic Italy—the ‘sacerdotal’ nation par excellence as the seat of the papacy—at the center of the Italian Risorgimento process and all European ‘regeneration.’20 If, however, for democrats like Mazzini, the main demiurge of this national ‘regeneration’ was the people, for Gioberti the main actors of the development of the nation-state were the Italian sovereigns; they were the only ones capable of directing the transformation of the nation into people.21 Gioberti’s plan for Italy is well-known: the establishment of a lega italica (‘Italic league’), or alliance of Italian sovereigns to be presided over by the pope.22 This proposal was not new; Rosmini had already proposed something similar, with major stress on the reform of the Church itself.23 In the Primato, the idea federativa—the confederate government—was presented as suitable for the Italians because it was deeply rooted in their customs, character, history, and geographical condition. The unitary plan was rejected as completely ungrounded, culturally, historically, and geographically.24 The rejection of the unified nation-state did not imply that Gioberti refuted the existence of an Italian nation which was, ultimately, the legitimizing source of sovereignty.25 As for the principle of popular sovereignty, Gioberti’s approach was more cautious: Candeloro has underscored that the Primato mentions the institutions of ‘consultative assemblies’ rather than constitutional monarchies establishing the division of powers.26 Gioberti’s relationship with the concepts of democracy, people, and popular sovereignty was troubled and ambivalent. On the one hand, he conceived of the ‘people’ as a point of arrival rather than departure of the previous political process, namely, the formation of a polity. On the other hand, however, Gioberti posited the nation (but not the people) above the sovereigns as the true source of sovereignty. As for democracy, he openly rejected universal suffrage, but along with many intellectuals of his age, deemed the progress toward broader participation of the masses to politics as an inevitable—if not a God-given—process.27 This palingenetic dimension in Gioberti’s discourse would eventually surface more clearly after 1848, and in particular in the 1851 treatise Del Rinnovamento civile d’Italia (‘On the Civil Renewal of Italy’), in which he would revise some of his earlier Neo-Guelph tenets and plans and adopt more liberal and anti-clerical standpoints.28

Reconsidering primacy  157 In conclusion, it is indisputable that, with his emphasis on reconciliation between Roman Catholicism and Liberalism, Gioberti can be regarded as the quintessential ‘moderate.’ As time went by, however, his palingenetic vision of politics and his cult of the nation surely discomforted a significant portion of the moderati who neither believed in the preeminence of the nation over the legitimate sovereign, nor condoned any push toward the extension of political rights to a fully realized democracy. A masterpiece of eclecticism Now, all these three properties occur in Italy, which is the autonomous and influential nation par excellence, since it provided all the other advanced nations of our modern age with the seeds of their civilization. In spite of its current decline, [Italy] keeps [such seeds] intact, whereas they are already altered and decaying elsewhere, to the extent that only through it [Italy] will humankind be able to achieve a complete civilization. That explains why Italy, which is the creator, the keeper, and the redeemer of the whole European civilization, destined to rule over the entire world and to become universal, can be legitimately considered the mother-nation of humankind. This is, in short, that moral and civil primacy that Providence has assigned to Italy, and that I intend to explain in the present work.29 In approaching the Primato, modern readers are surely impressed (if perhaps discouraged) not only by its length, or its grandiloquent ‘alluvial’ prose, but most of all by the variety of themes examined, which make the book the summa of Gioberti’s philosophical reflection: this sensation was shared by the author himself, who considered the book his most important intellectual achievement.30 The identification of the Italian nation—and therefore the theme of ‘primacy’—was the narrative and argumentative architrave of the entire book. In the Primato, Italy and its people were portrayed, despite their current decay, not only as the cradle of Western civilization, but also as the epicenter of a future European and worldwide regeneration under the aegis of Roman Catholicism. The political and nationalist themes were, however, the side of a broader speculation which rested on the analysis of Gioberti’s favorite subjects: ontology and gnoseology. For this reason, as the historian of philosophy Marcello Mustè has noted, the reading of the Primato still requires a ‘massive’ hermeneutic effort, aiming at deconstructing his diverse sources and his impressive intellectual eclecticism.31 The core of Gioberti’s speculation was represented by the relationship between the Ente (Being) and the Esistente (Existing), or the connection between the metaphysical, divine dimension—meaning God—and the immanent material world. Consequently, this speculation resulted in an extensive reflection on the theme of creation, both as the conservation of the existing world and as its continuous

158  Reconsidering primacy transformation and ramification.32 A corollary to this investigation was the long-standing gnoseological interrogative concerning the possibility of human knowledge to grasp the truth, which Gioberti identified with God’s will. The ‘divine support’ was regarded by Gioberti as the means to offset the flaws of human reasons and experience, and ultimately to heal the divide between human cognition and truth that originated with Original Sin.33 On this basis, Gioberti approached the entire human history as a derivation of divine creation and as a speculative relationship between humans and divine Providence. His history of Italy (and of humankind in general) rested, therefore, on a Providentialist vision which combined a broad array of sources, ranging from the Bible to classical erudition, historiography, modern ethnography, and physical anthropology. This eclectic recounting of Italian ethnogenesis offered different interpretative models: the first, a Providentialist one, which portrays the Italians as a new Israel, a new ‘sacerdotal nation’ destined to spread the logos in the world. This vision engaged with the traditional erudite mythography of the Antiqua Sapientia Italica, and the idea of an Italic/Italian origin of the entire Western civilization. These representations were combined with the new findings of comparative linguistics and the natural history of man: by doing so, Gioberti was able to fit, as though in a game of Chinese boxes, ethnolinguistic and naturalistic taxonomies into the older and broader biblical genealogies of the Christian tradition. Thus, the Italians were at the top of a ladder of ‘primacies’ which, from the mythical Pelasgian ‘stock,’ passed through the ‘Indo-Germanics’ (or ‘Indo-Pelasgians’) to reach the Tower of Babel and the dispersion of people until the ‘physiological division’ occurred, making them into ‘Caucasians’ and ‘Yellows’ of the children of ‘Japheth,’ son of Noah. The resulting narrative, though inconsistent, proved extremely appealing because it reinforced the understanding of human history as a history of nations as fatture di Dio (literally, ‘God’s creations’) in which ‘race’ and its ‘qualities’ played a pivotal role in determining the past, the present, and the future.34 The ‘primacy’ of a nation of ‘Levites’ A strength of the Primato resided in its embedding of Italian national history within a Providentialist frame. Through open parallelism with the history of Judaism, Catholic Italians were defined as the ‘Levites of Christianity,’ chosen by God to protect ‘the ark of the new alliance’ under the aegis of the Roman pontifex: just as, in ancient Israel, the tribe of Levi was destined to the priesthood, in modern times Italians were, as the See of Peter, the new sacerdotal nation among the Gentiles.35 This vision leveraged traditional themes of Christian theology such as Supersessionism, deriving also from the interpretation, with strong Vichian echoes, the concept of religion as the foundation of human civilization shared by other contemporary thinkers.36 Moreover, Gioberti had no doubt that biblical episodes could constitute a piece of reliable evidence: since his laurea thesis (1823) in theology,

Reconsidering primacy  159 and, in particular in the chapters De mosaicæ historiæ veritate and in De Josuæ libro, he had defended the authority of the Bible, and in particular allegorical sources.37 The problem of the relationship between God and immanence was central to his philosophical speculation, and historiography represented an occasion for explaining or resolving certain questions, or confirming specific interpretations of the Scriptures.38 Gioberti could rely, for his theory of the Italian Primato, on the robust erudite and antiquarian tradition of the Antiqua Sapientia Italica, according to which Italic civilization predated and gave birth to the Greek classical one.39 This tradition had been recently revived by the Brescia-born erudite Angelo Mazzoldi (1799–1864), whose monograph—Delle origini italiche e della diffusione dell’incivilimento italiano all’Egitto, alla Fenicia, alla Grecia e a tutte le nazioni asiatiche poste sul Mediterraneo (‘On the Italic origins and the diffusion of Italian civilization in Egypt, Phoenicia, Greece and all Asiatic nations facing the Mediterranean sea’)—defended the autochthony of Italic civilization from its Orientalist detractors. Gioberti avidly read and extensively commented on the Delle Origini italiche, and, in the footsteps of Mazzoldi, heightened a theory that went back, among others to Vico: that is, the Italian descent from the autochthonous Pelasgians.40 In Gioberti’s view, modern Italians were a composite nation whose cultural and linguistic variety made the Peninsula the ‘mirror of Europe.’41 Along with other contemporaries, Gioberti pointed out the survival of ancient pre-Roman idioms in modern Italian language and dialects.42 These differences, however, did not prevent him from identifying the Italian as ‘stock’ as stemming from the same Pelasgian ancestor and maintaining its primeval qualities. Thus, despite the diversification into different regional ethnicities or ‘stocks,’ the subsequent ‘mixing’ with Slavic, Celtic, Germanic, or ‘Iberian’ ‘elements’ or even the development of different habits and demeanors, modern Italians still maintained ‘by virtue of the laws of nature’ the ‘character of the ancient inhabitants.’43 A curious exception to this common ‘pan-Pelasgian family portrait’ is represented by the Piedmontese, who are deemed in part to descend directly from the pre-‘Indo-Pelasgians’ autochthonous Ligures. This apparent Piedmontese extraneousness to the broader Pelasgian stock was rapidly resolved by Gioberti through a complex (if abstruse) theory of ethno-racial civilizational developmental cycles, which saw in this belated mixing of the Ligures with the Pelasgian ‘stocks’ the emergence of Piedmont as a political power.44 The theme of the pre-Pelasgian Ligurian origin of Piedmont made, in effect, this subalpine population a sort of ‘superautochthonous’ Italians, and would outlive Gioberti to re-emerge in the following anthropological works of the 1850s and 1860s.45 A ‘plural’ but racially homogeneous—or at least homogenized—Italy emerges from the pages of Gioberti, who also took aim at bypassing the divisive, long-standing debate opposing Classicists to anti-Classicists, and Romanism to anti-Romanism. When it comes to Rome, Gioberti praised its pivotal role in compacting and amalgamating Italy, while also pointing out

160  Reconsidering primacy the controversial and violent nature of Roman dominion. From this perspective, Roman conquests and militarism are dismissed in favor of Rome’s civilizational role, and, most of all, a Providentialist interpretation that presents the Romans as the ‘people naturally elected to the preparation of Christianity.’46 In perfect continuity with the Romantic view of the Late Antiquity and early Middle Ages, Gioberti identified the spreading of Christianity as the founding moment of the new Italian identity, and, of course, of the new primato of Italy as a Catholic and Italian primacy.47 Always in the footsteps of Italian Romanticism, and, in particular, of Neo-Guelphism, stood his negative description of the Celts and Germanics, and their influx in the Peninsula. Gioberti concurred with other Neo-Guelph authors on the Lombard Question by arguing that a complete separation existed between the invading Lombards and the invaded Romano-Latins, thereby contributing to their failure of ‘mixing’ into a single nation.48 Interestingly, this negative portrayal of the Germanic legacy was framed not only in terms of a clash between two ‘stocks’ and ‘two nations,’ but also through a sociopolitical perspective: ‘the real noblemen of Italy are,’ Gioberti adds, ‘the commoners’ in whose veins ‘a pure and precious, or, at least less mixed, Pelasgian blood flows.’ The aristocrats are, he concludes, ‘the children of the barbarian population,’ while the commoners are the heirs of the ‘ancient patriciate.’ It is rare to find in the coeval Neo-Guelph writings such a clear reminder of the French debate about feudal Frankish aristocracy and the Gallo-Roman third-estate roture, framed in such potentially subversive guise that renders Gioberti’s ‘moderatism’ a category to be further examined and discussed.49 The long list of Italic/Italian ‘primacies,’ as well as some controversial statements concerning other, foreign ‘stocks,’ might induce us to consider the extent to which Gioberti reconciled his praise of Italian identity with his Christian universalism. Some scholars have pointed out Gioberti’s bombastic jingoism, where others have dismissed his nationalism although they fail to clarify what they mean by ‘nationalism.’50 Mustè has, for example, argued that the Primato does not represent a nationalist work because Gioberti never believed in superior nations per se, but rather by embedding Italian superiority in his Christian millenarianism. In other words, according to Mustè, Gioberti’s vision of Italian superiority resided exactly in being the ‘most cosmopolitan of nations’ for its inheritance of the primo biblico (literally, ‘biblical first’): the custody of Christian Revelation through the institution of the Roman Catholic Church. The universalistic dimension of Roman Catholicism would, in short, make Italy a ‘sacerdotal nation’ devoted to the redemption of humankind, and through the teorica dei primi (literally, ‘theory of firsts’), Gioberti aimed to explain the historical becoming of this progressive redemptive and civilizational path from ancient Israel to the modern world. In short, according to this interpretation of Gioberti’s philosophy of history, Catholic universalism superseded and tamed any nationalist and xenophobic impulse, and created the curious paradox of a

Reconsidering primacy  161 national superiority based on the condition of being a non-nation, and the demiurge of a future worldwide Christian regeneration.51 This analysis demonstrates how any examination of the Primato should not neglect to consider its Christian millenarian dimension. That being said, if the embedding of the ‘primacy’ narrative in a Christian universalist eschatology seems, in effect, to defuse its potential exclusionist drives, then the choice itself of relying on the ‘primacy’ tradition (combined with the constant reference to an Italian God-given specificity and superiority) shows that the Primato cannot only be considered a work of Christian apologetics. In all fairness, Gioberti’s narrative, like any Risorgimento discourse on national identity, was laden with deep tensions and contradictions resulting from the conflicting need to establish a national specificity on the one hand, and a politically emancipatory message of Liberalism, on the other.52 In this outlook, Gioberti’s national and Catholic palingenesis made no exception, and his explanation and opinions on European ethnogeneses and races proved enlightening. Children of Japheth: Caucasians and… (Indo-)Europeans? The reconstruction of Gioberti’s views on race and ethnicity constitutes a challenging task due to his syncretism resulting from embedding the modern findings of historiography and archaeology, along with emerging linguistic and anthropological disciplines in broader biblical Creationism. The books, the pamphlets, and, most of all, the sheer volume of notes and letters preserved among his papers testified to the magnitude of his studies about the origins of nations, ethnicities, and ‘races.’53 As we have mentioned earlier, Gioberti’s approach to race cannot be fully understood without taking into account his strict adherence to the Bible. In the Primato, the book of Genesis was defended as both a genuine and reliable account of the birth of humanity and a useful prefiguration of its future. Furthermore, Gioberti condemned any comparative approach which held the Egyptian, Indian, Persian, and Classical sacred texts or mythologies as historically reliable and truthful as the Bible. This skeptical approach to sources employed by the Orientalists and the Indologists did not imply that the taxonomic divisions of European languages of comparative linguistics were fully rejected, nor that classical mythology was entirely discarded, as long as they could be employed to confirm the biblical account.54 In short, when it comes to examining Gioberti’s thought on humankind and races, one must keep in mind that he considered all the events narrated in the Genesis—such as the ‘geogony,’ the catastrophes like the Great Deluge or the racial division of ‘stocks’ before Noah—as real and indisputable historical facts.55 The fact that Gioberti held a monogenist view on the birth of humankind is no surprise, given his strict adherence to the biblical account of the creation: in the Primato, he boldly asserted that ‘all human races derive from the same stock.’56 In addition, his monogenist stance was reinforced by his

162  Reconsidering primacy ontological view of the immanent world as an emanation of the metaphysical divine one (the Ente). Based on this premise, ‘the existence itself of one God prevents,’ stated Gioberti in one of his manuscripts, ‘the possibility of more human species.’57 This presence of one divine will, and therefore one creation, implied that humankind originated as one and would have, eventually, returned to one under the guidance of Providence. These considerations were the logical corollary of the eschatological dimension of Gioberti’s ontology: the creation of the immanent world by God and its subsequent return to God, condensed in the formula l’Ente crea l’Esistente e l’Esistente ritorna all’Ente (‘the Being creates the Existing, and the Existing reverts to the Being’).58 Accordingly, the condemnation of polygenism on a theological basis could not have been more drastic: ‘the doctrine which maintains the original diversity of races,’ argues Gioberti, ‘is physically improbable, morally inhumane, and theologically blasphemous.’59 Similar critiques were directed, with certain contradictions, at those theories maintaining the superiority of one race over the others, as well as to environmental determinism. Rather, for Gioberti, the ‘mingling’ of ‘races’ and ‘stocks’ was beneficial to their development, and inscribed in an inevitable providential design: History demonstrates that stocks evolve only by mixing and mingling with each other; and that their encounter alters them radically, especially if they have been living segregated from each other for a long time, since the isolation perpetuates division and fragmentation, while fraternization recomposes the primitive unity. We do not lack examples of stocks which have been revived by foreign grafting, such as, for example, the Celtic and Pelasgian populations, which have been rejuvenated by Teutonic blood.60 The rupture of this ‘primitive unity’ and the diversification of humanity into ‘races’ and ‘nations’ were identified by Gioberti in two central events: the Great Deluge and the ‘Phalegic dispersion’ following the Tower of Babel. Like any event narrated in the Bible, the Great Deluge was considered by Gioberti an authentic episode, and those scholars who questioned its historicity were met with extreme condescension.61 According to Gioberti, by the time of the Great Deluge, the ‘physiological formation of stocks’ was surely already occurring, and the three sons of Noah—Ham, Shem, and Japheth— represented the main ancestral varieties of human species.62 Certainly for Gioberti, the findings of the modern natural history of man and ethnography ultimately confirmed the biblical narrative; those scholars who were proceeding ‘non-biblically’—he insisted—were destined to ‘fruitless’ research.63 The Bible’s recount of the ancestral Near East was considered, in fact, an accurate reconstruction of the conflict between the main ethno-racial groups of humanity. The period immediately following Noah was described by Gioberti as the succession of the ‘ethnographic ages,’ in which the ‘early’ civilization and power of the ‘Hamites’ was eventually

Reconsidering primacy  163 superseded by the ‘Semites,’ and, ultimately, by the ‘Japhetites.’ Thus, the history of the great Mesopotamian civilization was framed within a succession of great ‘stocks’: the ‘Hamites of Nimrud,’ the ‘Semites of Ashur,’ and the ‘Japhetites of Chaldaea.’64 Particular attention was devoted to ancient Egypt, described as the result of the stratification of different ‘stocks’ characterized by their own ‘physiological type,’ shown by ancient iconography: the primeval ‘Hamites and negro’ ‘King Shepherds,’ eventually pushed back and conquered by the ‘Semites’ and ‘white and Indopelasgians’ ‘Sabaeans.’65 Although certainly borrowing terms like ‘Indopelasgians’ from the Orientalists, it appears evident that, for Gioberti, the cradle of humankind—including white ‘Japhetites’ in particular—remained in the Near East, in perfect adherence, as we said, to the Holy Scriptures.66 This idea was reinforced by another adjective associated with the previous ‘Japhetic,’ or the more generic ‘white’: that is, Caucasian. When describing the racial genealogy of his fellow countrymen, the Primato places the Italians at the top of a taxonomic ladder, envisioning the following scale and succession: Japhetites  > Caucasians/white > Iranian/Indopelasgians > Italics.67 This last reference to a ‘Caucasian’ physical marker—in addition to the several references to the different ‘physiological formations,’ or ‘physiological types’—urges us to explore Gioberti’s acquaintance with modern racial taxonomies, and to formulate, if possible, some hypotheses from within a broad congeries of sources. Although the Primato does not seem to refer to any specific work on the natural history of man, we can be certain that Gioberti was familiar with the most renowned anthropologists of his age. From the examination of the manuscripts preserved among his papers, it has been possible to ascertain that he knew the main collections of linguistics, geography, and anthropology, such as the atlases of Adriano Balbi. Furthermore, we know that he read and carefully annotated Crania Americana (1839) by the American physiologist Samuel George Morton, as well as the French translation of the Natural History of Man (1843) by the English physician and ethnologist James Cowles Prichard (1786–1848).68 Neither annotation reveals any particular opinion on the two respective authors, although it is likely that Gioberti did not hold Morton’s polygenism in high esteem, while, on the other hand, he was surely reassured by Prichard’s staunch monogenism.69 What we can surely infer was, instead, his interest in Morton’s craniological studies (and in particular the connection between skull capacity, intelligence, and ‘character’) and Prichard’s remarks on ancient Egyptians as the product of racial mixing between ‘negroes’ and ‘Caucasians’—a theory which would remerge in the footnotes of the Primato. Another particular field of interest—and surely another borrowing from Prichard—was the investigation of the ‘allophylian populations,’ that is, the pre-Indo-European ethnicities of Europe and their modern heirs.70 Except for these summaries and annotations in the manuscripts, however, the Primato appears laconic when it comes to a detailed reliance on a specific author or work in physical

164  Reconsidering primacy anthropology. This lacuna might be perhaps explained by the troubled relationship between the natural history of man and censorship, and, in particular, the controversies engendered by the polygenist stances of some of the most renowned naturalists.71 The only author who seems to be widely mentioned and acclaimed throughout the Primato, although without a clear reference to any specific work, is the French naturalist and zoologist Georges Cuvier. The Primato presents, indeed, several passages in which Cuvier is praised as a great ‘talent,’ as well as a thinker ‘devout to religion.’72 In particular, Gioberti seemed to appreciate his paleontological findings, which were portrayed as a turning point in the history of natural sciences.73 Undoubtedly, several aspects of Cuvier’s natural history of man, ranging from his monogenism to his anti- evolutionist theories to and his fixism—matched by his catastrophism—were extremely palatable for a devout Catholic philosopher and clergyman like Gioberti. Similar to many naturalists of his age, Cuvier held firm faith in Creationism and was a staunch opponent of evolutionary theories, such as, for example, Lamarckism.74 Among other things, he believed in the historicity of the Great Deluge, and placed the post- diluvian cradles of humanity at the top of the main world’s orographic systems: the Atlas for the Blacks, the Altai for the Asians, and the Caucasus for the Whites.75 This mountainous chain, purposely placed at the edge of the biblical world, constituted the new center of irradiation between the two ‘Caucasian branches’—the Indo-Europeans and the Semites—after the great catastrophe, and would have accelerated the divisions of the original humankind.76 We might suggest, therefore, that Cuvier’s Caucasian theory can be considered the naturalistic culmination of a long-standing antiquarian, historical, and biblicist speculation about the origins of the white people dating back at least to the early eighteenth century.77 The ‘Caucasian hypothesis,’ by combining the Bible, classical mythology, philology, and geography, examined the myths like Prometheus, the Garden of Eden, Noah’s Ark, and numerous other legendary episodes in support of the thesis that the Caucasus constituted one of the primordial ‘watersheds’ of humanity.78 Many eighteenth- and nineteenth-century scholars and intellectuals were conversant with this debate, and it has been recently suggested that even Friedrich Blumenbach’s coinage of Caucasian relied more on the study of these alleged primordial migration patterns than on his aesthetic Classicist criteria.79 Against this backdrop, it is clear that the philosopher and, most of all, the biblicist Gioberti made no exception to the multifaceted ethno-racial investigation of biblical and classical antiquities: he borrowed the term ‘Caucasian’ to classify white populations from a diverse range of authors and ethnogenetic models. Accordingly, it is difficult to accredit his usage of the term to one particular influential author. Rather, it might be argued that Gioberti gathered the findings of several scholars and anthropologists (including typology, craniology, physiology, and physiognomics) under the ‘acceptable’ synthesis

Reconsidering primacy  165 represented by Cuvier’s natural history of man. Like many cases, Gioberti’s Caucasian seems to function as a relatively flexible classification, which indicated some broader human classifications, yet by also enclosing the concept of a primeval ‘type,’ allowed typological racialism to carve out space to accommodate national physical specificities.80 However, such national ‘traits’ were embedded into a racial history tracing back to the Caucasian origins, the Noachian descent, and, therefore, a Providential grand design embracing all Japhetites and Semites as offspring of one Caucasian and white stock. What seems absent in Gioberti’s vision, in spite of several references to conflicts between ‘Semites’ and ‘Japhetites/Indopelasgians’ (and the supremacy of the latter), is the idea of racial alterity of Europeans vis-à-vis the ‘Semitic’ Hebrews and Arabs.81 For Gioberti, the Near East remained the cradle of the entire humanity, and this strict Biblicism seemed to create problems not only with racial Aryanism, but also with the fundamental hypothesis of an Indo-European ethnogenesis. Gioberti approached theories around an Asiatic—and, especially, an Indian—origin of languages with skepticism. An important component of this diffidence was ascribable to his adherence to the book of Genesis, which identified the birth of all languages in the ‘Phalegic dispersion’ following the Tower of Babel in Mesopotamia. A corollary aspect to consider was represented by his response to theories which, by positing the center of European culture in the Eurasian core, marginalized the Mediterranean basin and, therefore, the idea of an Italic ‘primacy’ as a link between the biblical Near East and Europe.82 Ultimately, this disinterest toward comparative linguistics was complicated by the fact that Gioberti’s linguistic taxonomies were neatly encased as smaller sub-groups in the broader racial branches. In other words, unlike Romagnosi and Cattaneo, Gioberti did not seem to consider racial and linguistic derivations as two different processes, and, in the line of many Romantic authors, considered linguistic families to be effective racial groups.83 Such a ‘biological’ understanding of linguistic derivation could not foresee an origin of European languages outside of their biblical Japhetic ancestor. Although adopting the groupings of comparative linguistics for his ethno-racial map of Europe, Gioberti never acknowledged the superiority or the antecedence of ancient Indian languages vis-à-vis the Hebrew. Thus, even if the main European languages were classified under the ‘Indogermanic’ or ‘Indopelasgian’ ‘family’—divided in ‘Pelasgians,’ ‘Germanics,’ ‘Celtics,’ and Schiavoni (‘Slavs’)—the antiquity of Sanskrit was seriously questioned, and the European ethnogenesis was reconnected with the ‘Semitic’ one.84 The absence of a dichotomy opposing ‘Japhetites’ to ‘Semites,’ although not resulting in a chauvinistic Aryanism, did not prevent Gioberti from having an ambivalent view on ‘races.’ Gioberti was an advocate of monogenism, and considered polygenism false, ‘blasphemous,’ and ‘unjust,’ as well as repeatedly condemned any purported ‘superiority of blood’ boasted by Northern European authors.85 Among the merits of Roman Catholicism,

166  Reconsidering primacy he enumerated its vehement defense of monogenism, and, therefore, the unity and equality of mankind.86 Furthermore, he openly criticized European colonialism and, although praising missionary activity, he was horrified at European nations who, with their aggressive expansionism, seemed to have reverted to the age of gentilesimo, or paganism.87 In short, all of these aspects combined seem to offer the image of a staunch defender of racial equality, interested in pitting Christian universalism against racism and exploitation. This rendition risks, however, overshadowing some of the more controversial aspects of Gioberti’s racial thought. If he despised the conquest and exploitation of Amerindians, on the other hand, he made no secret of considering the white Caucasians, and especially their Pelasgian ‘branch,’ as intellectually superior to the extra-European populations. In all fairness, it must be said that such superiority is presented, as the author precisely states, nei termini presenti, that is, ‘in the present condition.’88 This last consideration should induce the reader to consider Gioberti’s understanding of race as malleable and alterable: in short, an escapable condition which seems perfectly in line with his eschatological monogenism. The fact remains, however, that the Primato reveals a clear ethnocentric approach, based on the supposed superiority of white people, and in a sort of Godgiven supremacy of the ‘Japhetites’ over the other ‘stocks.’ Lastly, several digressions on the ‘beauty’ and the ‘harmony’ of the Italic and Pelasgian ‘type’ underline how, by the time of Gioberti, the ideology of the Italian ‘primacy’ had already acquired the connotation of proper racial superiority.89

Italy as a ‘fusion of stocks’ The realist In comparison with the grandiloquent tones of the Primato, Balbo’s response, Delle speranze d’Italia (‘Hopes of Italy’), appears dictated by a more sobering, ‘realistic’ approach to the resolution of the Italian question.90 Unlike Gioberti, Balbo neither lingered on any specific national mythopoesis (such as the ‘primacy’), nor did he refer to the Italian nation as the recipient of a specific, divine, mission; even the space devoted to the national past by Delle speranze d’Italia would be, all things considered, extremely scarce if compared to Gioberti’s treatise. In reading this book, it even seems, at least to a modern eye, that Balbo would exorcise an excessive cult of the national past by focusing instead on the factual obstacles interposed between the Italians and their achievement of nationhood. And although the nationalist historian Balbo would present the Italian past, along with the intellectuals of his age, as a prefiguration of the struggle for independence, in his works the reference to an Italian national identity never did obscure the problematic reality of a diverse and plural Peninsula.91 If the fil rouge of Gioberti’s treatise is the definition (and the glorification) of the Italian identity, in Balbo such a thread is spun by the modalities through which independence

Reconsidering primacy  167 92

could be achieved. If Gioberti conceived of the regeneration of Italy as the resolution of a moral European question, for Balbo the solution to the Italian question was first and foremost the resolution of a European geopolitical and diplomatic impasse.93 And Balbo himself made no secret of the fact that this resolution could have also implied a war against the Austrian Empire, and that the burden of such conflict should have been borne by his native land: the Kingdom of Sardinia.94 The reasons for Balbo’s realism were multiple and rooted in his social and individual background which made him a sui generis Neo-Guelph.95 First, as many historians have noted, stood his dynastic patriotism, which induced him to interpret the Italian struggle for independence as a process destined to be led by the Kingdom of Sardinia, and a chance for the aggrandizement of the House of Savoy. Count Cesare Balbo belonged to the Piedmontese aristocracy which imagined its social role first and foremost as a service to the crown and the state: a Piedmontese socio-cultural ‘peculiarity’ that Balbo described.96 Apart from Subalpine and aristocratic descent, however, other reasons existed for Balbo’s preference for the Piedmontese monarchy: Balbo deemed the dynastic state—and in particular the great Western European national monarchies—the historical cradle of representative institutions, and the monarch, rather than the generic ‘people,’ as the source of sovereignty. From this perspective, the roots of the modern constitutional government had to be sought not in an imaginary founding collective moment (as in the mythopoeses of Contractualism), but in the evolution of a previous polity.97 The historicist vision of representative governments as a historical derivation of the modern monarchical state explains why Balbo, although upholding the Italian national cause, never considered the nation as the legitimate principle of sovereignty. Rather, as he would elaborate in his later writings, the practical political legitimacy of any polity resided in its historical predecessor: in other words, in the fact that any new sovereignty descended from a previous, antecedent sovereignty.98 In short, Balbo tended to separate the sphere of political sovereignty (statehood) from the sphere of nationality, and sought to keep distinct the struggle for the independence from the advocacy for free institutions. In open disagreement with Gioberti, who preferred not to mention the practical obstacle represented by the Austrian presence in the Peninsula, Balbo deemed the independence—and, therefore, the full and effective sovereignty of the Italian states—as the necessary prerequisite of any further political development.99 In this sense, his promotion of the conservative ‘consultative government’ was integral to his plan for an alliance of the Italian monarchs, whereas the advocacy for free institutions would have proven, as it did in both 1820–1821 Italy and the Iberian case, fatally divisive for the entire national cause.100 This commitment to Italian independence ruled out the possibility of a single unitary state, since for Balbo, the sphere of political sovereignty neither theoretically nor historically coincided with the sphere of nationality.

168  Reconsidering primacy Balbo’s plan for Italy started from the acknowledgment of the historic political fragmentation of the Peninsula, as well as its cultural, ethnic plurality, and, therefore, the rejection of a unitary solution.101 Similar to Gioberti, Delle speranze d’Italia devised a confederation of the Italian monarchs, without entrusting the pope with any particular symbolic or institutional charge: the practical pivot of future Italian independence was instead the Kingdom of Sardinia. From the outlook of an inevitable expulsion of Austria from the Bel Paese, Balbo envisioned the expansion of Piedmont throughout the entire Po valley, and the creation of a Kingdom of Northern Italy by the annexation of the former Habsburg Lombardo-Veneto possessions. The idea of a northern Italian state was by no means a novelty: it had already emerged—whether in the guise of a republic, or a constitutional monarchy—during the Napoleonic debates over the political future of Italy.102 Balbo’s project, however, sought to present his new confederative project as a successful and feasible solution based, unlike the Napoleonic plans, on the strengthening of the existing Italian dynastic states. The territorial expansion of Piedmont, and therefore the creation of a subalpine polity encompassing the entire arch of the Alps, was presented by Balbo as an effective protection of the Peninsula, and, therefore, a benefit for all Italian sovereigns. From this vantage point, the expansion of Piedmont guaranteed geopolitical reinforcement of the Kingdom of Naples which could have projected, as Balbo repeatedly emphasized, the Italian power in the Balkans and the Near East. Balbo also aimed at leveraging the crisis of the Ottoman Empire to reach a peaceful settlement with Austria through territorial compensations in the Balkans. In short, Balbo’s plan was a Piedmont-centered, more conservative amendment to Gioberti’s project: the confederation of the Italian monarchs (under the Savoy tutelage), a moderate roadmap of reforms, and, most of all, the removal of Austria from the Peninsula without, if possible, a war—an event that, as we will see, not everyone wished to prevent.103 A ‘primacy’ or ‘gloriuzze retrospettive’? Therefore, it seems to me out of question, and, to a certain extent, obvious, that only one style, only one progress [in the arts] occurred in those times in Greece, in Magna Græcia, in peninsular Italy, and Etruria. Yet, this art was more developed in the Magna Græcia rather than in Etruria or Italy, and was even more perfected in the actual Greece than in Magna Græcia. Hence, rather than calling it Etruscan or Italic, or even Italo-Greek, a person without any prejudice would simply define it as Greek art. As for the theory according to which this art actually originated in Italy and eventually migrated to Greece (where, among other things, we have a lot of evidence of its origins and gradual evolution), it seems to me one of those presumptions, cajoleries, or retrospective little glories

Reconsidering primacy  169 in which certain nations dawdle and comfort themselves in the same manner of disgraced aristocratic families. After all, even ceding to such a vanity, we would have much better glories to be proud of. Yet, it would be even better to imitate them, and perhaps it would even be enough to imitate only one: the tenacity of the Romans against foreigners that we are going to examine below.104 In reading these words, one may doubt that the statesman and historian Cesare Balbo held Gioberti in high esteem, insomuch as his criticism of the idea of an Italic ‘primacy’ could have not been more trenchant.105 These gloriuzze retrospective (literally ‘retrospective little glories’) were a clear reference to the Antiqua Sapientia Italica and to the revival of this myth among the coeval Italian nationalist authors. Needless to say, among these authors stood Gioberti, who in the Primato argued, for the existence of a mythical Italian God-given Pelasgian ethno-racial superiority vis-à-vis the rest of Europe and the world. However, if national mythopoeses responded to the understandable need of boosting national pride and confidence, the blatant exaggerations and distortions of the national past would have shown, as in the case of the ‘destitute noble families,’ the contrast between the magniloquent pretensions and the current state of decay and impotence. Although praising—and, to a certain extent, developing—Gioberti’s reflection, Balbo dismissed national myths by emphasizing the historical and factual obstacles preventing the achievement of national independence. By doing so, he provided a vision of the Italian past and national identity that was different—if not opposite—to the millenarian idea of a homogeneous, Godchosen, Pelasgian ‘stock.’ The refusal of foundation myths and the adherence to the historical method made Balbo’s approach to the national past ‘sober,’ especially compared with Gioberti’s imaginative digressions.106 Balbo’s main political work, Delle speranze d’Italia, openly dismissed the idealization of the past, whether found in Classical Antiquity or the Middle Ages.107 In contrast to Gioberti’s Primato, considered by his author as the culmination of his scholarly activity, Balbo conceived Delle speranze d’Italia as a response to a specific question on Italian independence raised by Gioberti’s work, and not as the summary of his wide-ranging intellectual and scholarly reflection on the Italian past. As we approach, Balbo’s historiographical production, ranging from his renowned monographs such as the 1830 Storia d’Italia (‘History of Italy’), the 1846–1847 Storia d’Italia. Sommario (‘History of Italy: Summary’), the 1842–1845 Meditazioni storiche (‘Historical Considerations’), to his essays such as the 1832 Del naturale de’ Piemontesi (‘On the Nature of the Piedmontese’), and finally the 1844 La fusione delle schiatte in Italia (‘On the Fusion of Stocks in Italy’), the extent to which the question of Italian identity was deeply examined and further elaborated is clear.108 Balbo’s approach to the Italian past made him, as it has been noted, a sui generis Neo-Guelph because he did not share some of the common tenets of

170  Reconsidering primacy that school of thought. For example, while he defended Roman Catholicism as one of the main pillars of national identity, he did not always deem papal interventionism in politics as beneficial for Italy’s independence. In this sense, Balbo betrayed the influence of the anti-clerical and liberal Sismondi and, most of all, of the Renaissance anti-curial philosopher Niccolò Machiavelli, without ever mentioning him for obvious reasons.109 This downplaying of Italy’s centrality as the seat of Roman Catholicism is also evident in his Christian view of history, which led him to embrace a cyclical paradigm of different ‘primacies’ possessed, from time to time, by different peoples and nations, rather than an ahistorical eternal Italian primacy. In this sense, Balbo distanced himself from Gioberti’s exclusivist millenarian vision of the Italians as the ‘new Israel,’ and contextualized—and, therefore, reduced— the importance of Italy within the broader history of ‘Christian progress’ by adopting a more detailed approach to the same biblical sources.110 The first casualty of Balbo’s historiography was the idea of a cultural and civilizational ‘primacy’ of the Italics/Etruscans, as well as their descendants from one ‘pure,’ mythical Pelasgian ‘stock.’ Rather, he argued for the ethnic plurality of ancient Italy, and the ‘foreign’ origins of the Pelasgians.111 This racial extraneousness of the Pelasgians to the main Italic stock did not entail a sanction of autochthonism, which was conversely discarded in the light of Christian Creationism and monogenesis. For Balbo, the reality of a unique origin of mankind denied the feasibility of ‘purely’ autochthonous European populations. This centrality of biblical cosmogony— although softened by an insistence on a comparative analysis of historical facts—rendered Balbo’s approach an interesting (and problematic) mix of older and recent paradigms. For example, his strict Biblicism and traditional views on the divine origins of language accompanied a genuine interest in Orientalist and Indologist studies without accepting the idea of an Indian ethnolinguistic cradle of Europe.112 Likewise, the origin and migration patterns of the traditional biblical Noachian genealogies were reconstructed by increasingly relying on the findings on physiology and anthropology. In short, Balbo’s ethnography of Italy can be defined as an interesting attempt to use new models and methodologies in order to discard the traditional mythopoesis of the Antiqua Sapientia Italica, without questioning the equally long-established authority of the Classics and the biblical account. A composite nation Balbo commenced his ethnographic digressions by underlining that, in spite of the expectations of the patrioti, Italy had never actually been a unified country, from either a political or an ethnic standpoint. Rather, the ‘natural divisions’ between its continental and peninsular sections, as well as the variety of settlements and the recurring invasions rendered Italy a country which could have been hardly defined as the ‘nest of a sole population.’113

Reconsidering primacy  171 The Peninsula, rather than being the cradle of one autochthonous ‘stock,’ represented a complex melting pot of different bloodlines deriving from the stratification of different human fluxes originating since the earliest ages of mankind.114 In other words, Balbo was openly rejecting the model posited by Cuoco in his Platone in Italia (and, to a certain extent, readapted by Mazzoldi and Gioberti) in favor of the thesis of a ‘plural’ Italy, as advocated by Giuseppe Micali, who also questioned the indigenousness of Pelasgians. The similarities with Micali were not limited to the anti-‘primacy’ or ‘Pelasgomaniac’ querelle, but also emerged in the critique of Barthold Niebuhr’s theories, including the thesis of the Rhaetian origins of Etruscan civilization.115 Yet, the adoption of a ‘Micalian’ perspective on Italic origins did not include Micali’s rigid autochthonism, which was stretched, as observed in Chapter 2, to the limits of proper full-fledged polygenism.116 Conversely, for Balbo, the primitive Peninsula was an empty and uninhabited land, eventually colonized mostly by the different ‘Japhetic’ migratory waves originating from the same biblical Middle Eastern ethnogenetic epicenter. The stratification of these different ‘primary migrations,’ as Balbo defined them, condensed in three broader ethnic families—the Tyrrhenians, the Iberians, and the Celts—which he connected with the main Noachian lineages. Among the first ones were the Tyrrhenians (Tirreni/Tirseni/Raseni), ‘one of the first primitive Japhetic stocks’ of the Javonii, which he identified in the biblical tribe of the Tyras, who migrated from the original Mesopotamian region through Asia Minor and the Aegean area. According to Balbo, ancient sources and toponyms, along with the same astonishing similarity between modern and ancient physical ‘types,’ testified to the predominance of the Tyrrhenian bloodline in the modern Italian ethno-racial pattern. Concurrent with the Tyrrhenian settlement in the Peninsula was the colonization of another sub-group of the Javonii—the Iberian/Ligures—who spread throughout a broader geographical area, including southern Gaul, the Pyrenees, and Iberia. Yet, Balbo believed that, because of their scarce and scattered settlements, the Ligures were eventually outnumbered and absorbed by the Tyrrhenians and the Celts. The latter represented the last of the great ‘primary migrations.’ Balbo identified their migratory path as the one of the biblical Kettim of the northern Black Sea, who eventually penetrated into Italy from their previous Danubian and high-Rhenish settlements.117 Along with the ‘primary migrations’ of these ‘Japhetic stocks,’ Balbo identified the ‘secondary migrations’ of smaller, and yet culturally and politically significant groups like the aforementioned Pelasgians (ca. 1400 BCE). These were vagrant pirates and seafarers who, like the Normans of the Middle Ages, colonized and eventually dominated vast parts of the Peninsula by leveraging their military and cultural superiority. In the footsteps of Micali, Balbo argued for their ‘Semitic’ ancestry from their onomastic derivation from the Hebrew term Phaleg (literally, ‘dispersion’) and would also employ racial typology to support this hypothesis.118 Among the legacies of the Pelasgian stood their contribution to the Etruscan culture, which

172  Reconsidering primacy developed from their contact with the ‘native’ Tyrrhenians. In this sense, Balbo, by underlining the hybrid nature of the Etruscans—the Italic culture par excellence—further refuted any idea of a purely autochthonous, civilizational process.119 The overturning of the Pelasgian dominion by an Etruscan-led coalition in the twelfth century BCE marked, for Balbo, the first of Italy’s ‘wars of independence’ waged by the Italics against other subsequent invasions. Among these, the containment and repelling of Celts— who caused the demise of the Etruscan ‘empire’ after six hundred years—led to the definitive affirmation of Rome among the various Italic tribes in the fourth century BCE.120 Contrary to the expectations, the portrayal of Rome as the second champion of ‘Italian’ independence did not induce Balbo to praise its development thereafter as an aggressive militaristic machinery. In a pure ‘Giobertian’ ecumenism, Balbo repeatedly urged his readers to praise Rome first and foremost for its ‘preparation’ of Christianity as the future seat of Catholicism.121 Moreover, the Neo-Guelph dichotomy opposing Latins to Germanics in describing the Romano-Germanic relations appears extremely nuanced—if not absent—in Balbo’s writings. Unlike his friend Troya, he did not hold a pessimistic view of the Germanics, and even if he defended the cultural superiority of Rome and did not share in the Romantic myth of the Germanic ‘rejuvenation’ of the decadent Greco-Roman bloods, Balbo reserved no derogatory judgments toward the barbarians.122 Even concerning the Lombards—and therefore the whole Lombard Question—Balbo assumed views that emphasized the integration rather than the total separation between the invaded and the invaders. In addressing the theme of violent rupture represented by the Lombards’ debut in Italian history, Balbo tended to emphasize the survival of Roman institutions, and by doing so, he placed himself in the ‘continuist’ interpretation of Friedrich Carl Von Savigny in Germany and of Giandomenico Romagnosi in Italy. As for the actual racial encounter between Latins and Germanics, Balbo moved beyond the traditional Neo-Guelph vision by emphasizing both the ‘fusion’ and the significant contribution of ‘Lombard blood,’ at least to the ethnogenesis of modern northern Italians.123 Even if, as he clarified, the proportion of the Germanic ‘infusion’ in the Italian bloodline was by no means comparable to the French or the Spanish cases (thereby preserving Italy as the most racially ‘Latin’ of the Romance nations), the leitmotif of ‘fusion’ dominates Balbo’s national history.124 This focus on the complexity of ethnogenetic processes was undoubtedly a reflection of Balbo’s theory on the formation of nationalities perceived as a process of gradual aggregation and amalgamation. In the essay La fusione delle schiatte in Italia, Balbo explained how this process consisted of the gradual agglomeration from smaller to larger human groups, ranging from the families, to the tribes, and then from the genti (literally ‘populations’) to the nations. This gradual aggregation from the family, the tribe, and the genti to the nation echoes the classical partition between ‘natural’

Reconsidering primacy  173 and ‘constitutional’ peoples: that is, between the gentes (or groups bounded by a common origin, descent, and customs), and the populi organized into polities and other juridical super-structures. For Balbo, therefore, the nations were the culmination of the stratification, clashes, and even the dominance of one population over the others, and from this perspective, the class and estate divisions of Europe were explained, in Thierry’s style, as a derivative of previous ethnic conflicts.125 What characterized Balbo’s vision of history was the continuous conflict (and therefore instability) informing the dialectics between the ‘populations’ and the ‘nations.’ Antiquity was, in his opinion, an arena of cyclical development leading to the aggregation of populations into nations, followed by the demise of these nations by the hands of other populations, and so forth. Thus, even the most formidable empires like Rome passed through this inexorable cycle, and in the long run perished at the hands of the more ‘primitive’—yet more virtuous—populations. Therefore, for Balbo, the decadence of the great ancient nations was chiefly a history of a moral and political decline, of the inevitable demise of tyrannical and unequal empires in the face of the more virtuous and cohesive ‘natural peoples’ or genti. The interruption of this cyclical dynamic was identified with the coming of Christianity which, as Balbo reminded, …gradually changed everything; it transformed the ethical models, by modifying that condition of servitude in which many populations were subjected, as well as by realizing that fusion of stocks that never happened in the ancient times. In short [Christianity changed everything] by forming those nations which are the best condition, the special type, the fundamental units in the Christian world as were the populations in the antiquity, and, moreover, it preserved these nations—better connected to each other—from idleness and the corruption of the ancients.126 Therefore, Christianity, and not the mere accidental interbreeding between barbarians and Romans, was considered by Balbo as the catalyst for the birth of modern nations. Hence, the reversal of the cyclical dynamics was formulated. Whereas in antiquity the primitive genti always defeated the evolved nazioni, in modern times the advanced, Christian nazioni always defeated and absorbed the genti.127 Balbo defended this claim—which sounds today extremely Eurocentric—by illustrating several successful examples of ‘progress’ made by the Christian ‘nations.’ Among them, he listed, of course, Italy along with other major powers like France, Russia, and the United States, with a special mention to the United Kingdom portrayed as the quintessence of Christian temperance and industriousness.128 Thus, if for Gioberti Christianity elevated Italy to the status of a ‘new Israel,’ for Balbo it benefited the whole European oecumene by inaugurating an age of fusion and progress. This vision, coupling the birth of modern nations with Christianity, had Romantic roots; the equation, however, of modernity with the diffusion of Christianity was indebted to an older historiographical

174  Reconsidering primacy tradition going back to the historian Ludovico Antonio Muratori.129 In conclusion, the formation of modern nations through the ‘fusion’ of diverse populations was presented, in a Providentialist and eschatological frame, as a developmental stage in the broader history of Christian progress. These nations, which ‘can fall ill—but,’ as Balbo added, echoing Gioberti, ‘never perish,’ were intended, as the choice of verbs suggests, as biological entities. We will now turn to examine how their corporeality intersected with the Christian narrative of the Creation.130 Between the Bible, typology, and Micali’s ‘Etruscomania’ Balbo’s history of mankind was substantially based on an adherence to biblical Creationism, and his use, as in Gioberti, of the book of Genesis as a historically reliable document. On these premises, as we have seen, any theory arguing for the pure autochthony of an Italian (but, also, European) population was denied in principle because it contradicted biblical monogenism, and specifically, the idea of a Middle Eastern origin of humanity. In line with Gioberti, Balbo maintained that ‘human physiology’ also validated the historicity of biblical narrative, and aimed to provide an explanation for the subsequent physical differentiations of primeval humankind in Hamites, Semites, and Japhetites.131 Although the themes of biblical Creation, monogenism, and anti-autochthonism are traceable throughout Balbo’s writings, the main systematic and comprehensive discussion on physical anthropology can be found in the Meditazioni storiche. This book was a collection of several essays (or ‘considerations’) that addressed numerous themes related to historical sciences, such as the philosophy of history, Providentialism, philology, linguistics, and ethnology. Most of all, with this exercise of ‘universal history,’ Balbo realized his lifelong aspiration to ‘find a harmony’ between human and natural sciences and biblical Revelation: in short, none other than the reconciliation of science and faith.132 Like Gioberti, Balbo posited the primordial cradle of humankind at the Mesopotamian barycenter of an area delimited by the Mediterranean on the West, the Black sea on the North, the Indo-Iranian plateau on the East, and the Persian Gulf on the South.133 Unsurprisingly, he validated the historicity of the Great Deluge, and identified in the event of the Tower of Babel that ‘Phalegic dispersion’ which ignited the migrations of the three main Noachian stocks: the Hamites, the Semites, and the Japhetites. He examined the migration of the last, more sprawling group in several meditations concerning their subsequent moving and distribution through many areas of settlement and concentration across Eurasia, and, in particular, the path of Javonii. These Mediterranean ‘proto-Europeans’ settled in Greece and Italy after a long migration through the Near East, modern Turkey, Thrace, the Aegean Basin, and the Ionian Sea, giving birth to the proto-Hellenic Ionians and Hellenes, the Proto-Italic Tyrrhenians/Raseni, and the Ligures/ Iberians.134 This reconstruction of the primordial Mediterranean basin

Reconsidering primacy  175 differs from Gioberti’s in the erasure of the Pelasgians from the phylogenetic tree of the Japhetites, and relegated, on the other hand, to the ‘Semitic’ family. This Noachian branch was further separated by Balbo from their Japhetic counterparts, and his writings do not mention, as do those of Gioberti, a common ‘Caucasian’ ethnogenesis. This last point does not imply, however, that Balbo believed in the radical alterity of these two Noachian ‘stocks,’ nor that he believed in an Aryan, ‘Indo-Germanic’ family, positing a common Indo-European ethnogenesis.135 What is most striking in comparison with Gioberti is Balbo’s focus on the ‘physiological’ division of the primordial biblical lineages. Bound to a Creationist and a fixist anti-evolutionary view, he seemed to resort to an explanatory model based on the interplay of climatic and hereditary factors. Such a vision excluded the existence of different ‘races’ as different human species: Balbo believed that ‘physiology’ and zoology confirmed the incapacity of different species of animals to reproduce fertile breeds. The absence of infertility in ‘mixed-race’ individuals proved that the polygenist assumption according to which the different ‘color and shapes’ that represented different human species was unfounded. Instead, these interbreeding experiments confirmed the development of different varieties from the same original species, or even the same individual.136 From this perspective, what triggered these radical morphological transformations within human species was the combination of environmental factors with a consistent degree of endogamy through generations—a fact that, as Balbo reiterated, was likely the norm at least during the primordial stages of humanity. When, therefore, describing the physical diversification of the Noachian ‘stocks,’ Balbo’s particular attention to the ‘darkening’ of the ‘Hamites’ leaves no doubt concerning his view of the white complexion of the first human beings, and of the ‘degenerative’ process underlying the formation of the black ‘stocks.’ When asked about the origin of the Africans, Balbo ascribed their darker complexion to the gradual ‘penetration into that burnt continent’ by their primitive ancestors.137 This climatic factor alone could not, however, explain why other ‘races’ and ‘stocks’ who eventually populated Africa did not meet the same modifications: Was it a mere coincidence or, rather the result of an unknown natural cause, that the stocks situated themselves in different climatic zones? Such a question does not really matter: that is what actually happened. And, in this situation we can certainly hypothesize that two main factors cooperated as they never did later. It never happened again, in fact, that the stocks lived so isolated and separated from each other as they did in those times. It never happened again that marriages occurred only within the same stock, and, specifically, within the same population, and, initially, within the same family, and, therefore, between first cousins or even between brother and sister. Hence, some mutations, peculiarities, and even monstrosities in shapes and features, skin

176  Reconsidering primacy color, habits, customs, bodily and spiritual vices and virtues were kept, transmitted, and even increased within each of the three main stocks [here Balbo is referring to the Hamites, the Semites, and the Japhetites] and their eventual further subdivisions. Therefore, it should not come as a surprise that the Hamites would have increasingly become more burned, colored, reddish, darker, or completely black because of the sunlight and the torrid winds of the southern deserts. Yet the curly hair, the acute facial angle, the peculiar shape of the eyes, and the fleshy lips [surely resulted from] the repeated intermingling among the descendants of Ham and Kush. Again, all these features or monstrosities were transmitted and increased much more in that stock which had remained the most isolated and segregated from the others. And it is evident also in the present times that these [traits] persist when the said stock moves from a location to another, but they vanish as soon as it mingles [with other races]. Hence, we can argue that the stock had a greater role than climate [in the shaping of physical traits]. After all, it is possible to find, apart from the physical features, several similarities in the languages, the arts, the customs, and the religions among these Hamitic populations. And the same similarities can be observed even among the modern Semites who live in those climate zones previously inhabited by the Hamites; the Arabs, however, although exposed to the same sunlight and African winds, have never become negro or pug-nosed.138 Thus, more so than the mere influence of climate—its role downplayed since his earliest writings—Balbo seemed to identify the real cause of the morphological diversification of human beings in degeneration, or the deviation from a human type through a hereditary process.139 All the ‘monstrosities’ that he ascribed to the modern ‘Hamites’—such as the ‘curly hair,’ ‘the acute facial angle,’ the ‘pug nose,’ and, obviously, the ‘darkened skin’—were presented as accidental deformities or deviations from a previous model, and eventually consolidated into proper hereditary traits through systematic and prolonged inbreeding. As such, Balbo seemed to fully adhere to the degeneration interpretative paradigm by closely relating the concepts of identity and difference, and binding them with the idea of the alteration as something that is different, but not radically other. This, of course, enabled monogenism—and especially a Christian monogenist theorist—to explain phenotypical differences without resorting either to evolutionism or to polygenism.140 While the portrayal of the black Hamite, with its emphasis on ‘monstrosities’ and ‘degeneration,’ did not appear particularly laudatory, opposite tones were unsurprisingly reserved for the white Japhetite: Finally, the Japhetic stock, which with its more diverse moral and material varieties, confirms the double influence of climates and stocks. Being the least sedentary in a single climate zone and, conversely, the

Reconsidering primacy  177 most scattered compared to the other two [stocks], it did not retain distinct colors, shapes, or customs; it turned white by migrating northbound and, conversely, it became darker by moving southbound. It mixed its features with those of other stocks, switching customs, laws, civilizations, in short, everything except for genius of change itself, that industriousness, that force of dispersion which better complied with the divine commandment, that progressive and conquering audacity which was prophesied by the common father and revealed to Moses, who himself noticed it. [This audacity] was then noticed by the ancients, and it is more than self-evident in the present times.141 Here, Balbo clearly associates the extreme morphological diversity of whites with the command given by God to Japheth to disperse and conquer the world. The racialization of biblical prophecy is matched with a monogenic explanation of the differentiation of original man into many varieties, and of the whites in their turn into many ‘varieties,’ or even sub-varieties. Balbo’s degenerative model may have been indebted to Georges Cuvier, whom, in the footsteps of Gioberti, he generously praised in his writings.142 It is clear, on the other hand, that the anti-polygenist and pro-degeneration stance in explaining human diversity in a biblical narrative frame derived from James Cowles Prichard’s Research into the Physical History of Mankind (1826 ed.), which Balbo cited.143 Probable—albeit now impossible to ascertain—is the derivation from Prichard of Balbo’s typological racialism.144 Balbo resorted to physical and craniological typology to reconstruct the genealogical tree of ancient peoples, as well as modern nations. When defending the ‘Semitic’ origins of the Pelasgians by questioning their supposed Hamitic ancestry, he argued that the mingling of the Japhetic proto-Hellenic populations with the black Hamites would have irremediably altered the ‘Hellenic type’ as ‘it has remained’: that is to say, white (and with specific craniological features).145 The ‘type’ was therefore employed by Balbo as the most reliable marker of primeval groups by virtue of its substantial fixity across time provided by atavism, or the tendency to revert to primitive, dominant features (comprising, of course, psycho-moral and behavioral traits). Thus, in defending the dominance of the Tyrrhenian ‘primary’ ancestry of Italians, and of modern Tuscans in particular, Balbo resorted to typology: …here in [Tuscany] [are] maybe [more evident] than elsewhere the relics of the language, purer blood, and more typical traits of the stock. Surely this Italian type, so different from the Greek [type] and all the other ones, and that is recognizable, despite the high degree of [blood] mixing, in the ancient monuments and in the modern figures (particularly in Dante, as it has already been noted) still demonstrates a great capacity to affect the [traits], and in other words [it reveals the presence] of the most copious population among the primary stocks: and the fact that

178  Reconsidering primacy this type is better preserved, whereas the Tyrrhenian stock has persisted the most, demonstrates that such stock has been the most prevalent among Italics.146 Again, the proof of the quintessential ‘Italianness’ of central Italians resides in their traits and demeanor: in perfect ‘Micalian’ tones, the Piedmontese Balbo, by paying homage to both Etruscology and to the ‘Tuscophilia’ of his age (which identified modern Tuscany as the quintessence of Italian culture and identity), extended national history to the most remote, proto-Italic past. Thus, by the early 1840s, the imprinting of national genealogies on the skull and bodies of the Italians seems to have become a thriving process, waiting to arrive at its completion together with the fortune and institutionalization of physical anthropology in the decades to come.

The two Italian ‘races’ …and their prospective amalgamation The soldier and ‘geo-strategist’ If Gioberti and Balbo essentially wished to revisit the order of Vienna without shattering the coeval Italian states, Giacomo Durando doubted that such a political arrangement complied with the ‘natural order of things,’ nor did he believe that independence could be achieved peacefully. On one thing, however, did Durando agree with his interlocutors: the infeasibility of a unitary nation-state, even on different theoretical and political premises, based on the analysis of ‘positive’ data and sources.147 Durando proposed, in effect, a partition of Italy according to its geographical and ethnic layout— in short, following the ‘natural’ elements informing the Italian nationality. Although a monarchist himself, he did not believe in the full compatibility between the order sanctioned in Vienna and the independence and freedom of Italians, and advocated a drastic simplification of the political map of Italy. Furthermore, although acknowledging the role of Catholicism in Italy, he considered the papacy a historical obstacle rather than the guarantor of Italian independence. For this reason, even though we might consider Durando a moderate liberal, and his 1846 treatise—Della nazionalità italiana. Saggio politico-militare (‘On Italian nationality. Political and military essay’)—an integral component of the moderate debate, he can be hardly included among the ranks of Catholic Neo-Guelphism.148 Durando’s biographical path was indelibly marked by the experience of exile and a decade as a volunteer in the liberal armies in Belgium, Portugal, and Spain. Born into a family of Piedmontese provincial bourgeoisie with an experience of service in the Napoleonic administration, Durando was exiled in 1831 from the Kingdom of Sardinia due to his alleged participation in the conspiracy of the ‘Knights of Liberty,’ a liberal student organization agitating for a constitution and the end of Absolutism. After a brief stay in Belgium, Durando volunteered in liberal ranks during the civil wars in which

Reconsidering primacy  179 liberals opposed legitimists in Portugal and Spain in the 1830s and 1840s. During these conflicts in the Iberian peninsula, his adhesion to Liberalism matured, and he came to see his defense of the constitutional monarchy as the only form of government capable of reconciling freedom with independence and the successful management of nation-building processes. There, he also developed a strong anti-clericalism, which he deemed as the only valid antidote to the influence on the masses of legitimist clergy. For this reason, Durando, although deeming the path to democracy as historically inevitable, never believed in the immediate feasibility of democratic government and the peaceful coexistence between the masses and Liberalism. In fact, Durando believed that the Italian people as imagined by the revolutionaries never existed, and needed to be shaped and guided by a strong and free constitutional monarchy. By doing so, he posited a clear link between independence and constitutional Liberalism absent in both Gioberti and Balbo. At the same time, he shared a similar skepticism toward the existence of the ‘people’ considered as politically aware and self-determining subjects.149 Along the same lines as Gioberti, Durando grounded his partition of Italy along the lines of ‘nationality’ (and the sub-nationalities) rather than the will and consent of the people. On a geographical and, most of all, racial basis, Durando identified three main Italian ‘macro-regions’: Northern Continental Italy (corresponding to the Alps and Po Valley), the Peninsular Italy, and Insular Italy comprising the main islands and archipelagos. These areas deserved, by virtue of their different history, customs, and national ‘character,’ to be considered each a sub-nationality of a broader Italian identity, and therefore to be administered by different polities. Durando identified, in particular, the existence of two main Italian ‘races’—a northerner and a peninsular—which, although stemming from the same ‘Caucasian’ progenitor, had subsequently evolved into two different ethnic, cultural and, to a certain extent, ‘political’ blocks. The lion’s share of his partition belonged, not surprisingly, to the Savoy dynasty in the north with a Regno dell’Alta Italia (‘Kingdom of Upper Italy’), while he envisioned the Bourbons of Naples entitled to reign over the entire Peninsular section under a Regno della Bassa Italia (‘Kingdom of Lower Italy’). Insular Italy, along with a handful of border regions, were, in turn, intended to serve as the main territorial compensatory outlet for the minor Italian dynasties, while different plans were devised to guarantee papal sovereignty, at least in Rome and its outskirts.150 To those who considered his plan bizarre, unjust, and dangerous, Durando reiterated that his geo-strategy (namely, the analysis of the interaction between geography and human ethno-racial migratory patterns) meant to provide Italy with a political map in greater compliance with its ‘natural’ divisions, therefore bringing about a stability that the Restoration had failed to guarantee.151 Moreover, according to Durando, this partition plan had the indisputable merit of laying the ground for a future Italian unitary nation-state as soon as the modernization process successfully amalgamated the two main

180  Reconsidering primacy macro-regions. The ‘steam engine,’ railroads, and improvements in communication would, along with the exercise of free institutions, provide future Italians with the unity for which they yearned, and which for so long had been denied by geographical and political obstacles.152 In the eyes of the liberal soldier war—and, in particular, a war for independence—remained the crucible for the shaping of future Italians. Durando made no secret of considering the war with the Habsburg Empire inevitable: if all the geopolitical and diplomatic tools available for subduing Austria failed, Italian monarchs had the duty to train for and guide their subjects in the inescapable clash, no matter what the cost might have been: ‘Even if, in order to carry out our enterprise, half of the Italian people were to die,’ continued Durando, ‘the surviving half would reconstitute in a few years a new race, re-baptized and rejuvenated by the blood of the sacrificed generation.’153 From these emphatic, if not sinister, tones, it is easy to deduce that, for Durando, war seemed a welcome option rather than a sour necessity. With him, we find ourselves leagues away from Gioberti and his condemnation of the ‘Napoleonic slaughters’ as war acquires a palingenetic dimension: a real and proper event of regeneration of a nation and a race that, deprived so long of arms, had to be made ‘virile’ and ‘rejuvenated’ even at a cost of a long, bloody war.154 Durando seemed to provide his own solution to one of the great conundra faced by the ‘moderates’: the transformation of the Italian nation— united by culture, history, blood, and race—into ‘people.’ Such a question was complicated by the fact that all the authors examined in the present research agreed on the plurality rather than homogeneity of the Italians. Thus, if Gioberti aimed to identify the persistence of an original common heritage from which all modern cultures descended and diversified, and how a modern confederacy could be held together by the common ‘glue’ of Catholicism, Balbo seemed to consider this plurality an insurmountable barrier to any plan of further national integration. This might also explain why, besides a generic reference to a common Italian culture, Balbo’s Delle speranze d’Italia did not result in a broader inquiry on the racial past of the nation, nor did it agree on a common Italian progenitor. In contrast, Durando, while stressing the diversity of the two main Italian ‘races,’ conceded that the nation-building process—through modernization and, most of all, war—might have reunited these races in the long run and produced a compact and ‘re-generated’ Italian ‘race.’ Again, the question of providing the nation with a material, concrete essence—a corporeality—to be identified, counted, and governed made the inquiry into the racial past of the nation a necessary step for any theorist of the Italian nationality. ‘Positive’ data and nation-building The arts arose among us like a tyrant. Rather than being satisfied by their role, and, therefore, helping us in our difficult mission of designing

Reconsidering primacy  181 our future socio-political life, the arts wanted to govern it, and become master of our fate. And then it happened that the anarchy, the nonsense, and the silliness of our literature infected our customs and opinions. When I see [poets like] Petrarca and Tasso crowned with laurel in the Capitolium, or the apotheosis of Ariosto and Metastasio, I recognize in these commendations a due homage to the arts and the aesthetic genius of the Italians. Yet, I look in vain for thoughts about our nationality, our social life, our fatherland. The arts are killing us.155 It is striking—if not baffling—that, in the introductory pages of his Della Nazionalità Italiana, Giacomo Durando waged such a vehement critique of the pernicious effects of arts on the Italian nationalist movement. After all, as the cultural history of Risorgimento has convincingly demonstrated, poetry, fiction, music, and figurative arts played a central role in popularizing nationalist themes by shaping a ‘morphology of national discourse’ whose continuation until World War I and Fascism has recently been the object of a far-reaching historiographical debate.156 One may expect, therefore, that a fervent patriot like Durando would have praised the spread of nationalist propaganda (most of all) through the appealing guise of literature, music, or figurative arts. Yet, his repeated condemnations of the ‘idolatry of antiquity,’ as opposed to an investigation of the past and the future Italian nationality ‘in the nature of things,’ further complicate our understanding of the multiple and often conflicting narratives of Risorgimento nationalism.157 In short, what motivated a patriota like Durando to reject—in the name of geography, ‘facts,’ and nature—the mythopoeses of Italian nationalism exactly when they were so pervasive and popular? Answering to this question is no easy task. It remains extremely difficult to determine when and how new approaches and disciplines superseded— or re-interpreted—older traditional narratives to claim the status of authoritative scientific knowledge. Durando’s emphasis on the study of geography as a key to explaining ethnogenetic processes further complicates our understanding of the relationship between nation and ‘homeland’ in Risorgimento nationalism; for the first time, a scientific eye purported to approach the natural ‘fact’ of the nation by discarding older tropes and allegories of the national-patriotic discourse. The reification of the nation as a common geographical space was well-known in Risorgimento nationalism: among the most common, topoi was the idea of patria (‘fatherland’) ‘consecrated’ by the blood and the sacrifices of the ancestors.158 We must still, however, fully understand the role played by landscape, understood as that physical, ‘inert,’ geographical space in the broader quest for the identity of Italians in Risorgimento nationalism, and how such inquiry contributed to the institutionalization of geographical disciplines in nineteenth-century Italy.159 Durando’s Della nazionalità italiana seems to be the only case in which, through a generalist and didactic frame, a treatise on Italian nationality resorted to

182  Reconsidering primacy geography to discuss the theses of influential authors such as Gioberti and Balbo. With his ‘geo-strategy’ (namely, the study of the interplay of geographical conditions and human migratory patterns), Durando effectively intended to transcend the traditional narratives of the Italian past, and ultimately formulate the ‘natural laws’ which ‘regulated’ ethnogeneses. This last aspect begs the question to which, by the mid-1840s, the public debate on the national past experienced significant transformation in its approach to human and social phenomena like nationalities and ethnogeneses. It is, in other words, necessary to investigate the ‘shift,’ or the simple dialectics, between the act of imagining the nation and quantifying (and counting) it as a concrete, real, and ‘living’ thing. The distinction between the act of imagining the nation and the act of quantifying it is, obviously, quite arbitrary, since the two actions are deeply interdependent. Yet, the act of quantifying the nation in Italy responded to a twofold concern that was both political (in the strictest sense of the term as the science and art of government) and patriotic. First and foremost, Europe in the 1830s and 1840s experienced a growing ‘enthusiasm for social counting,’ and Italy, with its flourishing of statistical studies and the Congressi degli scienziati italiani, was no exception to this trend.160 From this vantage point, statistics and geography were promoted around an idea of the nation as an object to be ‘known, measured, compared, and governed.’161 The latter aspect of governance, moreover, sprouted from the biopolitical (and implicitly geopolitical) concern of the nation as a group of living beings to be preserved and increased.162 As for the Italian case, patriotic feelings also grew from the dissatisfaction with the conventional stereotyping of Italy as a decaying and timeless nation exemplified by the Grand Tour’s portrayal of the Peninsula as a picturesque realm of ruins and ancient glories: a country where, in the words of French poet Alphonse de Lamartine, ‘everything is asleep.’163 Nationalist scholars utilized data and facts to reveal the ‘real’ face of Italy as an evolving and modernizing country ripe for achieving statehood.164 From this perspective, Durando’s condemnation of the ‘idolatry of antiquity’ demonstrates the discontent with the traditional portrait of Italy. It provides evidence of an attempt to discuss the future of Italian nationhood without idealizing a past that appeared, after all, as a history of failures and decay.165 It is no coincidence that Della Nazionalità Italiana, although praising the two recent seminal works of Gioberti and Balbo, criticized them for, respectively, indulging in this exaggerated cult of the past, and for having failed to emancipate themselves from it.166 In short, Durando’s emancipation from the antiquarian and Romantic mythopoeses consisted in his claim to analyze the ‘natural laws which regulate the birth and formation of nationality’ through the means provided by statistics, ethnography, and, most of all, geography.167 The resulting essay proved exceptional for the epistemological relevance assigned to race as a fact in determining both Italian identity and future Italian statehood.

Reconsidering primacy  183 A history of two ‘races’ Central to Durando’s analysis was the geomorphological anomaly constituted by the Italian Peninsula which, though clearly defined by the Alps and the Mediterranean, was both oblong and longitudinally and asymmetrically divided by the Apennine ridge, and accordingly divided in two main subregions: the Eridana (consisting of the river Po valley), and the Peninsulare (consisting of the Italian peninsula south of an approximate line traced by the Tuscan-Emilian Apennine crest).168 This layout was further complicated by the division of peninsular Italy into a cluster of sub-regions (created by the minor sub-Apennine longitudinal and transverse ridges) as well as the presence of three main islands and various archipelagos, all of which constitute together the Italia Insulare. The primacy given to the study of territory—seen as one of the two greatest ‘material’ forces of the state, along with the population—reflected an epistemological procedure traceable to the Enlightenment, which attempted to structure the world of phenomena by ordering a system of signs from the simple to the complex, and from inanimate matter to living beings.169 By doing so, a clear and well-structured connection between territory and population, rather than a vague environmental determinism, seemed to comply with the ‘nature of things’ that Durando set out to analyze. Furthermore, Durando’s systematic reliance on the ‘geo-strategy’ determining human migratory fluxes betrayed his military upbringing; however, it was also an attempt to explain through simple rules the relationship between the morphology of territory and the formation of ethnicities/nationalities.170 Thus, according to Durando, the orographic layout of Italy proved decisive in shaping the migratory patterns that created modern Italians. And such patterns, he argued, followed those of other major populations flowing from the world’s main orographic systems. The Caucasus, in particular, was considered a proper primary ‘watershed’ of humankind, originating multiple migrations ‘cascading’ from its tops and spurs down to the valleys and plains: For the sake of the argument, I have placed the first stock colonizing the entire world on St. Gotthard mountain, being the proto-strategic point of Europe. Had this been a fact, rather than mere conjecture, probably most parts of the world we know would have been deserted. To favor rapid and complete colonization of the land, it was necessary for the first reproducing core of the human family to be placed in geographic and orographic conditions which would have, in a certain sense, paved the way to the conquer of the world […] If we examine the map of the world, we can see without any doubt that such a place can only be found in the Caucasian region. As a matter of fact, this great chain is for our threefold continent [here Durando refers to Europe, Asia, and Africa] what St. Gotthard is for Europe. The Caspian Sea is, in effect, the

184  Reconsidering primacy natural path to the core of Asia, the Black Sea the bridge to Europe, and the Euphrates actually nothing but the beginning of that great basin which from the strait of the Persian Sea leads directly to Africa. Some of the populations who migrated from the Caucasian region and probably approached the shores of Asia Minor and Syria. Hence, after crossing the sea, they landed on the beaches of Latium and Liguria. Once settled, they ventured into the hinterland until they found a range of mountains they could not cross with the means available at that time. In the same way, they almost encountered—had this huge mountain range not interposed between them—another population, which had left the same region of Caucasus, traveling upstream in the Danube basin, and which finally approached the Alps. While the first stock managed to sail the waters of the Mediterranean, landing at the mouth of the Tiber and Polcevera rivers, the latter fought against the glaciers of the Rhaetian Alps […]. I presume, for example, that the Celtic stock originating from the Caucasus by traveling upstream along the Danube reached St. Gotthard mountain and, after crossing it, invaded and occupied the Po valley. In the meanwhile, the other stock originating from Asia Minor and Syria landed in the southern tip of the Peninsula after crossing the Mediterranean Sea. Hence, by sailing along the coast of the Adriatic Sea, it moved toward the region already settled by Celts.171 Yet, the seemingly inevitable convergence of the groups was prevented—per Durando—by the Tuscan-Emilian orographic system, which has perennially acted as a barrier between two equally powerful groups to the extent that: The vicissitudes of our nationality are, therefore, caused and determined by that timespan in which the Celts, Cisalpines, and GermanoGhibellines on one side, and the Pelasgians, Etruscans, ancient Romans, and modern Romano-Guelphs on the other competed for the control of our Peninsula.172 Drastically conditioned by this unsolvable Tuscan-Emilian ‘geo-strategic crux,’ the history of Italian nationality is therefore a history of ‘races.’ More precisely, as Durando reminded, of two sub-races—the Northern and the Peninsular—which, although sprouting from the same ‘Caucasian’ ancestors, developed into different bodies, ‘characters,’ mentalities, and institutions, and gathered together only once in history by the extraordinary and unique force of the superior Roman civilization.173 At this point, Durando’s reference to a ‘Caucasian’ migratory epicenter obliges us to momentarily halt his digression on the Italian racial makeup in order to focus on the broader picture of his view on race. In the Nazionalità italiana, the Caucasian genesis of primeval human groups seemed such an indisputable fact that Durando did not feel the necessity either to further explain it or to mention his sources. His papers, preserved at the Biblioteca

Reconsidering primacy  185 del Museo del Risorgimento of Turin, reveal no further detail, allowing only a comparison with Gioberti and Balbo, who views the source of inspiration for his essay. Undoubtedly, both the monographs and the papers reveal that Durando had a more troubled relationship with biblical sources and, although he did not adopt Noachian ethnonyms, he seemed to validate the historicity of the Great Deluge and its crucial role in originating early human migratory patterns.174 This last reference to the Deluge and the survival of primitive human beings at the top of the mountains reinforce the hypothesis that Durando might be included—like his more influential counterparts— in the group of advocates of a ‘Caucasian hypothesis’ regarding the birth of white people. In fairness, his passage about the Caucasus as the seat of the ‘first reproducing core’ of the ‘human family’ can be seen as evidence of the fact that he considered that mountainous chain the cradle of entire humanity, and not only of the ‘white’ race.175 A document preserved in Turin seems to confirm, at least, that, along with Gioberti, he regarded the Middle Eastern and European populations as sprouting from the same Caucasian ethnogenetic epicenter.176 In other words, it seems that Durando did not consider the Hebrew and Arabic Semites and the Indo-European Japethites as two different separate ‘races.’ Truth to be told, Durando’s writings never mention the ethnonyms ‘Semitic’ and ‘Japhetic’: his disdain for ‘idolatry of the antiquity’ may account for such an absence. When it comes to the main classification of European ‘races,’ Durando relied on a taxonomical differentiation into ‘Romances,’ ‘Germanics,’ ‘Slavs,’ and so on provided by linguistics. In this sense, he was in accord with the dominant ethno-racial paradigm of his time, in which linguistic groups were considered real ‘biological’ races and, at least in this respect, he perfectly aligned with Gioberti and Balbo (who, however, ‘encased’ the taxonomies of modern linguistics in their classical and biblical genealogies).177 This understanding of linguistic ‘families’ as proper ‘biological’ races also induces us to wonder why neither Della nazionalità italiana nor the unpublished documentation displays, besides a short and vague reference to the diverse ‘physiological character’ or the ‘organic’ constitution of the Italians, any mention of a phenotypical understanding of race whether in the form of ‘variety’ or ‘type.’ One reason for this: Durando might have deemed aspects like skin and cranial shape as completely irrelevant when speaking about Italians originating from the same Caucasian racial ancestor. In other words, the reference to the Caucasus might have worked as an ‘umbrella concept’ embracing the origins as well as the physical appearance of the Italians. Also, it is very likely that Durando had no intention to delve into those ethnographic questions concerning the origins of the racial differentiation of humankind that had already been covered by both Gioberti and Balbo.178 What really seemed to reconnect Durando to Balbo was his reconstruction of early migratory waves from the Caucasus to Europe and, in particular, their division into a Middle Eastern maritime route, creating

186  Reconsidering primacy the Mediterranean ethnicities, and a land path through the Sarmatic and Danubian plains, giving birth to the ‘Celts.’ Similar ‘Balbian’ echoes are heard also in his stress on the Italian ‘sub-nationalities’ and, therefore, on the ethnic plurality of the Peninsula resulting from the different kinds of migrations and settlements that occurred throughout the last three millennia. Among these ‘sub-nationalities,’ Durando also described the Ligures as one of the most ancient and isolated groups.179 Another borrowing from Balbo was, undoubtedly, his benign view of the Lombards, and his stress on the ‘fusion,’ rather than the separation, of this Germanic population vis-à-vis the invaded Italians. This last opinion should come as no surprise, given Durando’s anti-clericalism and his critique of the Neo-Guelph apologetic view of the papacy.180 When addressing the myths of Catholic tradition, Durando neither seemed to credit any legend surrounding the Pelasgians and their ‘primacy,’ nor to consider the papacy and Roman Catholicism the stronghold of Italian freedom and independence.181 On the contrary, he framed papal political interventionism and Neo-Guelphism in the context of perennial resistance put forth by the ‘Tuscan-Roman’ Apennine ‘geo-strategic crux’ against any attempt of ethno-racial (and consequently political) unification carried on by its northern or southern counterparts.182 This missed opportunity of Italian unification became the leitmotif of Durando’s desire to closely connect geography and history and, of course, geography and race. The only exception to this millenary trend was represented, as Durando emphasized, by the Roman republic for having been the only power capable to reunite the several Italic ethnicities under its guidance. This vision of Rome as the only polity which had effectively managed to amalgamate Italy, and an ante-litteram champion of Italian independence, can be considered another loan from Balbo.183 What radically differentiated Durando from Balbo was his optimistic view about the capacity of future Italians to overcome in the long run their diversity, and to achieve the reunification—and therefore the amalgamation of the ‘Northern’ and ‘Peninsular’ ‘races’—denied for so long by history and nature. The two leading dynasties of the planned kingdoms of Alta and Bassa Italia—the House of Savoy and the Bourbons of Naples—had already demonstrated the successful transformation of their diverse ‘ethnographic agglomerations’ into solid monarchical states, and nothing, he added, seemed to contradict the capacity of these two monarchies to carry out the process to its ultimate goal.184 This process of cultural integration, together with the technological improvements in transportation and communication and the transformative power of patriotic war, would have fused a plural and divided Italy into a single ‘regenerated’ race and healed the division of ‘stocks’ dating back centuries.185 Although Durando never displayed a medical approach to the engineering of the new Italians, and we cannot define his approach as a proper eugenic one, his faith was evident in the capabilities—and the duty—of the government and institutions to forge

Reconsidering primacy  187 186

a new Italian population. Some of the elements which would eventually dominate the ethno-anthropological debate of the 1850s and 1860s, and especially the social engineering of the new nation, were already at work in an incipient form on the eve of 1848. Durando’s views are indicative of both the expectations and the concerns of Risorgimento intelligentsia: the idea of a common Italian heritage, faith in the providential mission (or, at least, the common destiny) of Italy, and confidence in the inexhaustible potentialities of progress were melded with the acknowledgment of the state of distress, political decay, and cultural division of the Peninsula. All these elements would re-emerge in a few years when the problematic reality of the Unification would posit the need to ‘make the Italians’ anew.187

Conclusions Durando’s considerations on the governability and malleability of race as a concrete basis for the construction and consolidation of nationhood epitomize the growing interest in race in the imagining of national identity in the mid-nineteenth century. Della nazionalità italiana demonstrates the culmination of this interest among 1840s Italian ‘moderates,’ yet the envisaging of the future state on the ‘stocks’ of the Peninsula was not novel. After all, the idea of a correspondence between the racial background and the proposed political layout of the Peninsula had already emerged at least with authors like Cuoco during the Napoleonic age. By the 1840s, however, various authors had broadened their ethnographic digressions and placed significant emphasis on the necessity of taking into account the ethno-racial scenery or, as in the case of Durando, explicitly tailoring the state-building process to it. The tensions between the idea of a common Italian nationality and the ethno- cultural diversity of the Peninsula were complicated, and the resulting narratives were laden with deep tensions and contradictions. Against this backdrop, in-depth historical and ethno-anthropological digressions might come to serve two opposite ends with interesting outcomes. Thus, even an ardent advocate of a common Italian cultural and racial heritage like Gioberti could not fail to acknowledge the composite ethnic layout of the Peninsula, and therefore propose a confederation of Italian states. His mythopoesis of the God-chosen Pelasgian race could not overshadow the reality of cultural divisions that were thought to originate the most since prehistory. When it came, however, to the physical rendering of the Italian identity, Gioberti resorted to the categories of the natural history of man in order to reaffirm the persistence and homogeneity (as well as the superiority) of an ‘Italo-Pelasgian’ ‘type.’ Paradoxically, even a figure like Balbo, who argued against magniloquent national mythologies and insisted on the profound heterogeneity of Italy as the result of its ‘fusion of stocks,’ continued to identify the ultimate proof of Italianness in the permanence of an alleged primeval ‘Italian type.’

188  Reconsidering primacy For his part, Durando pushed this process of racialization of the national past to an extreme by focusing on the concrete ‘fact’ of race, and by discarding all episodes and aspects—transmitted by the arts, literature, and even historiography—that he deemed either imaginary or simply irrelevant. Furthermore, he stood out among other Italian intellectuals for his identification of the prospective racial amalgamation of the Italians as one of the most powerful tools for successful completion of an eventual national unification. By doing so, Durando assigned to the material and corporeal ‘datum’ of race an immense role in the engineering of a new cultural and political entity such as the nation-state. This ‘reduction’ of national identity to the most essential, observable, and quantifiable ‘elements,’ such as language and race, would prevail in the following decade, and particularly with the rise of ethnology a proper ‘science’ of nations. As we will see, in the 1850s, a proper ethnographic ‘turn’ took place in which an increasing focus on physical Italians would lay the foundation for the subsequent development and institutionalization, in the 1860s, of modern physical anthropology.

Notes 1 Vincenzo Gioberti, Del primato morale e civile degli italiani (Brussels: Meline, 1843), 1: 194. 2 Giorgio Candeloro, Storia dell’Italia moderna, vol. 2, Dalla Restaurazione alla Rivoluzione nazionale (Milan: Feltrinelli, 1958), 363; Francesco Traniello, Religione cattolica e stato nazionale. Dal Risorgimento al secondo dopoguerra (Bologna: Il Mulino, 2007), 74–77; Stefano De Luca, “L’Italia immaginata dai moderati: ‘Nation-building e ‘State-building’ in Gioberti, Balbo e D’Azeglio,” Storia del pensiero politico 1, no. 3 (2012): 497. 3 Candeloro, Storia dell’Italia moderna, vol. 2, 334. 4 Candeloro, ibid., 339–340. See also Giuliano Pancaldi and Umberto Bottazzini, eds., I congressi degli scienziati italiani nell’età del Positivismo (Bologna: CLUEB, 1983); Silvana Patriarca, Numbers and Nationhood: Writing Statistics in Nineteenth Century Italy (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996), 127. See, also, Maria Pia Casalena, Per lo Stato, per la nazione. I congressi degli scienziati in Francia e in Italia (1830–1914) (Rome: Carocci, 2007). 5 Massimo D’Azeglio, Proposta d’un programma per l’opinione nazionale italiana (Florence: Felice LeMonnier, 1847), 6; Umberto Chiaramonte, Il dibattito sulle autonomie nella storia d’Italia (Milan: FrancoAngeli, 1998), 97; De Luca, “L’Italia immaginata dai moderati,” 522. 6 Grégoire Bron, “The Exiles of the Risorgimento: Italian Volunteers in the Portuguese Civil War (1832–34),” Journal of Modern Italian Studies 14, no. 4 (2009): 427–428, 430, 435. 7 Candeloro, Storia dell’Italia moderna, vol. 2, 349. 8 Candeloro, ibid., 350–351. 9 Ignazio Veca, “‘Le nazioni cattoliche non muoiono.’ Intorno alle origini del nazionalismo cattolico (1808–1849),” in Cattolicesimo, Nazione e Nazionalismo. Catholicism, Nation and Nationalism, ed. Daniele Menozzi (Pisa: Edizioni della Normale, 2015), 18–19. 10 See Marco Meriggi, “Liberali/liberalismo,” in Atlante culturale del Risorgimento. Lessico del linguaggio politico dal Settecento all’Unità, eds. Alberto M. Banti, Antonio Chiavistelli et al. (Rome: Laterza, 2011), 108.

Reconsidering primacy  189 11 Candeloro, Storia dell’Italia moderna, vol. 2, 368. Francesco Traniello argues that a crucial generational shift occurred just a decade before (in the 1820s) and had a similar impact on the Italian Roman Catholic clergy by favoring the emergence of a new generation of clergymen more sympathetic to the Neoguelph thought. See Traniello, Religione cattolica e stato nazionale, 71. 12 De Luca, “L’Italia immaginata dai moderati,” 497. 13 Traniello, Religione cattolica e stato nazionale, 73, 173. 14 Giorgio Rumi, Gioberti. Un’Italia guelfa e federalista (Bologna: Il Mulino, 1999), 17–20. 15 The usage of the lemma “people” by Gioberti was, as Francesco Traniello has underscored, polysemic, for it could mean the sovereign community as well as the lower strata of society. See Traniello, Religione cattolica e stato nazionale, 184–185. 16 Gioberti, Del primato morale e civile degli italiani, 1: 80 (emphasis added). 17 De Luca, “L’Italia immaginata dai moderati,” 502. 18 Traniello, Religione cattolica e stato nazionale, 180–182, 184–185. 19 De Luca, “L’Italia immaginata dai moderati,” 507. 20 Gioberti, Del primato morale e civile degli italiani, 1: 396; Traniello, Religione cattolica e stato nazionale, 81–82. 21 De Luca, “L’Italia immaginata dai moderati,” 502–503. 22 Gioberti, Del primato morale e civile degli italiani, 1: 90–100. On the lega italica, see Gioberti, ibid., 92; as for the explanation of the pope’s ‘dogato,’ see Gioberti, ibid., 95–97; on the balance of power between each confederate sovereign and the federation, see ibid., 100. 23 Traniello, Religione cattolica e stato nazionale, 84. 24 Gioberti, Del primato morale e civile degli italiani, 1: 93–94. 25 Traniello, Religione cattolica e stato nazionale, 81. 26 Candeloro, Storia dell’Italia moderna, vol. 2, 362–363. 27 Traniello, Religione cattolica e stato nazionale, 139–140, 180–182. 28 Rumi, Gioberti, 92; Traniello, Religione cattolica e stato nazionale, 182–183. 29 Gioberti, Del primato morale e civile degli italiani, 1: 19. 30 Marcello Mustè, La scienza ideale. Filosofia e politica in Vincenzo Gioberti (Soveria-Manelli: Rubbettino, 2000), 205, 206. 31 Mustè, ibid., 9. 32 Mustè, ibid., 8. 33 Mustè, ibid., 62–63. 34 Gioberti, Del primato morale e civile degli italiani, 2: 360. See also Paolo Casini, L’antica sapienza italica. Cronistoria di un mito (Bologna: Il Mulino, 1998), 278. 35 Gioberti, Del primato morale e civile degli italiani, 1: 29. 36 Gioberti, ibid., 27–28. On Romagnosi see Sandra Puccini, ed., l’uomo e gli uomini. Scritti antropologici italiani dell’Ottocento (Rome: CISU, 1991), 257. 37 Mustè, La scienza ideale, 41. 38 Mustè, ibid., 44. 39 Gioberti believed that the civilization of the ‘Etruscan-Pelasgians’ or ‘Raseni’ predated Classical Greece and that actually partially derived from the Egyptian one. See Gioberti, Del primato morale e civile degli italiani, 2: 205–206. 40 See Angelo Mazzoldi, Delle origini italiche e della diffusione dell’incivilimento italiano all’Egitto, alla Fenicia, alla Grecia e a tutte le nazioni asiatiche poste sul Mediterraneo (Milan: Guglielmini e Redaelli, 1840), 5–7. On Mazzoldi and the reception of his book, in particular by Gioberti, see Antonino De Francesco, The Antiquity of the Italian Nation: The Cultural Origins of the Political Myth in Modern Italy, 1796–1943 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013), 47–48, 89. On his influence on Gioberti, see Casini, L’antica sapienza italica, 272; Giuliano Albarani, Il mito del primato italiano nella storiografia del Risorgimento (Milan:

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41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51

52 53

54 55 56 57 58 59 60 61

Unicopli, 2008), 102–105. The Biblioteca Civica di Torino [from now on BCC] contains several manuscripts and annotations by Gioberti, gathered in the ‘Carte Giobertiane.’ Included among them is Gioberti’s voluminous summary and review of Mazzoldi’s monograph: see Gioberti, “Delle origini Italiche e della diffusione dell’Incivilimento italiano all’Egitto, alla Fenicia, alla Grecia e a tutte le nazioni asiatiche poste sul Mediterraneo di Angelo Mazzoldi. Milano, 1840,” in BCC Manoscritti di Vincenzo Gioberti, vol. 25, fols. 329–570. Gioberti, Del primato morale e civile degli italiani, 2: 400. Gioberti, ibid., 264–265. Gioberti, ibid., 401. Gioberti, Del primato morale e civile degli italiani, 1: 126–128. See, also, ibid., 2: 403, 408–409. See Chapter 6 of the present work. Gioberti, Del primato morale e civile degli italiani, 1: 69. Gioberti, ibid., 37–39, 50. (emphasis added). Gioberti, Del primato morale e civile degli italiani, 2: 266. Gioberti, Del primato morale e civile degli italiani, 1: 301. See also, Gioberti, ibid., 2: 57. Casini, L’antica sapienza italica, 282; Mustè, La scienza ideale, 9, 209–210. Mustè, La scienza ideale, 209–211; on the primo biblico, primo etnografico, the position of Italy as the nazione sacerdotale, and the più cosmopolitica fra le nazioni, see Gioberti, Del primato morale e civile degli italiani, 2: 52, 396; ibid., 1: 76. On the teorica dei primi, see Mustè, La scienza ideale, 214–215. Silvana Patriarca, “Le relazioni pericolose: ‘razza’ e nazione nel Risorgimento,” in La costruzione dello stato-nazione in Italia, ed. Adriano Roccucci (Rome: Viella, 2012), 111. The Manoscritti di Vincenzo Gioberti render the magnitude of his lifelong scholarly and erudite effort in providing the most comprehensive account of the genesis of the Italian nation (a further investigation of such archival sources would surely help to shed light on Italian ideas on race and ethnicity in the first half of the nineteenth century). Among the authors mentioned by Gioberti stand physicians and anthropologists like Samuel George Morton, James Cowles Prichard, Georges Cuvier, travelers and geographers like Walter Hamilton, Alexander Von Humboldt, Adriano Balbi, linguists and orientalists like Frédéric Eichhoff, Bernardino Biondelli, Constantin Volney, and John Pinkerton, and historians like Amedée Thierry, Carlo Troya, and a polymath and philosopher like Giandomenico Romagnosi. Gioberti, Del primato morale e civile degli italiani, 2: 263–264. Gioberti, ibid., 181–184. See also Mustè, La scienza ideale, 41. Gioberti, Del primato morale e civile degli italiani, 2: 345. Gioberti, “Genere umano, diversità di stirpi,” Biblioteca Civica di Torino, Manoscritti di Vincenzo Gioberti, vol. 25, fols. 4–5. Gioberti Del primato morale e civile degli italiani, 1: 98. On the future reunion of humankind, see, also Gioberti, ibid., 2: 191. Gioberti, ibid., 1: 142–143. Gioberti, ibid. On the historicity of the Great Deluge, see Gioberti, Del primato morale e civile degli italiani, 1: 24–26. Gioberti was astounded to notice that the British linguist John Pinkerton denied the historicity of the Deluge, and commented: “Pinkerton denies the possibility of the Deluge!!!” See Gioberti, “Recherches sur l’origine et les divers établissements des Scythes ou Goths etc. Trad de Ang. De J. Pinkerton, Paris, 1804,” BCC, Manoscritti di Vincenzo Gioberti, vol. 43, fol. 21.

Reconsidering primacy  191 62 63 64 65 66

67 68 69 70 71 72 73 74 75

76 77 78 79 80 81 82 83 84

85 86

Gioberti, Del primato morale e civile degli italiani, 2: 186. Gioberti, ibid., 187. Gioberti, ibid. Gioberti, ibid., 2: 554–555. Conversely, as we have seen, many Orientalists saw the Altai or the Himalaya as the epicenter of the white and Indo-Germanic populations. See Leon Poliakov, The Aryan Myth: A History of Racist and Nationalist Ideas in Europe (New York: Basic Books 1974), 193–196; Hannah F. Augstein, “From the land of the Bible to the Caucasus and beyond,” in Race, Science and Medicine, 1700–1960, eds. Waltraud Ernst and Bernard Harris (London: Routledge, 1999), 70–72; Stefan Arvidsson, Aryan Idols: Indo-European Mythology as Ideology and Science (Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press, 2006), 37–42. Gioberti, Del primato morale e civile degli italiani, 2: 52–55. Gioberti, BCC, Manoscritti di Vincenzo Gioberti, vol. 18, fols. 429–445; vol. 21, fols. 259–276; vol. 20, fols. 777–820. Francisco Bethencourt, Racisms: From the Crusades to the Twentieth Century (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2013), 261. Gioberti, “Histoire naturelle de l’homme par James Cowles Prichard trad. par Roulin, Paris 1843” BCC, Manoscritti di Vincenzo Gioberti, vol. 21, fol. 261. Richard McMahon, The Races of Europe: Construction of the National Identities in Social Sciences, 1839–1939 (London: Palgrave McMillan, 2016), 32–33. On the ingegno and religione of Cuvier: Gioberti, Del primato morale e civile degli italiani, 2: 3, 317, 539. Gioberti, Del primato morale e civile degli italiani, 2: 67. On Cuvier, see Chris Manias, Race, Science and the Nation: Reconstructing the Ancient Past in Britain, France, and Germany, 1800–1914 (London: Routledge, 2013), 107, 138–139. It must be remembered that for Cuvier and other naturalists and ethnoanthropologists of his age, these toponyms covered a broader area than their current understanding. See Augstein, “From the land of the Bible to the Caucasus and beyond,” 62, 72; Michael Banton, Racial Theories (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2009), 44–45. Augstein, “From the land of the Bible to the Caucasus and beyond,” 64–65. Augstein, ibid., 64–72. Augstein, ibid. Augstein, ibid., 63. On typology, see McMahon, The Races of Europe, 94, 105, 126. Gioberti, Del primato morale e civile degli italiani, 2: 389. Gioberti, ibid., 2: 52–55, 198–199. McMahon, The Races of Europe, 25. On the adoption of ‘Orientalist’ taxonomies, see Gioberti, Del primato morale e civile degli italiani, 1: 22; and Gioberti, ibid., 2: 400. On the critique of the importance and antecedence of Sanskrit, Gioberti, ibid., 2: 263–264. Gioberti probably learned the basic classification of nascent Indo-Europeanism from the works of French orientalist and linguist Frédéric Gustave Eichhoff and his book: Parallèles des langues de l’Europe et de l’Inde (1835). See Gioberti, Manoscritti di Vincenzo Gioberti, vol. 22, Parallèle des langues de l’Europe et de l’Inde par F. G. Eichhoff, Paris, 1835, fols. 1023–1054. On Eichoff and his influence, see Poliakov, The Aryan Myth, 199. For example, Gioberti attacked polygenism as an ideological and political tool of the American slaveholding ‘oligarchs’; see Gioberti, Del primato morale e civile degli italiani, 1: 302. Gioberti, ibid., 2: 197.

192  Reconsidering primacy 87 On Gioberti’s condemnation of colonialism and the praise of missions: Gioberti, ibid., 1: 74–76, 228–229, against the myth of the superiorità di sangue, Gioberti, ibid., 2: 57, 386. 88 Gioberti, ibid., 2: 52–55. For example, Gioberti also compared the status of ‘savagery’ of the ‘red men’ to the ancient Northern Europeans before their Christianization; see Gioberti, ibid., 1: 228–229. It must be said, in effect, that in comparison with the vitriolic racism exhibited by certain scholars and anthropologists, Gioberti cited authors like the Spanish-Mexican Jesuit Francisco Javier Clavijero (1731–1787) who fought the prejudices against the Amerindians by highlighting their qualities and achievements. See Gioberti, “Crania Americana, or a comparative view of the Skull of various aboriginal nations of North and South America etc. by Samuel George Morton. Philadelphia, 1839,” in BCC, Manoscritti di Vincenzo Gioberti, vol. 18, ff. 429–445. On Clavijero’s antiracism, see Silvia Sebastiani, I limiti del progresso. Razza e genere nell’Illuminismo scozzese (Bologna: Il Mulino, 2008), 253. Interestingly, Gioberti’s equivalence of the Amerindians to the European populations before Christianity reflects the universalism of the Jesuit School of Salamanca, and, specifically, its ‘comparative ethnology.’ See Bethencourt, Racisms, 78–80. 89 Gioberti, Del primato morale e civile degli italiani, 2: 52–55, 56–57. On the superiority of the Pelasgians, and the Pelasgian type, see Gioberti, ibid., 2: 210, 265. 90 Francesco Traniello, “Politica e storia nella formazione di Cesare Balbo,” in Cesare Balbo alle origini del cattolicesimo liberale, eds. Gabriele De Rosa and Francesco Traniello (Rome: Laterza, 1996), 36–37. 91 Cesare Balbo, Delle speranze d’Italia. Edizione seconda, corretta ed accresciuta dall’autore (Capolago: Tipografia Elvetica, 1844), 29–30, 54–55. 92 De Luca, “L’Italia immaginata dai moderati,” 514–515. 93 De Luca, ibid., 508, 512, 515. 94 De Luca, ibid. 95 As we will see, Balbo never believed in the Christian Empire, or in classical republicanism. See Traniello, “Politica e storia nella formazione di Cesare Balbo,” 36–37. 96 See Cesare Balbo, “Del Naturale de’ Piemontesi” (1832) reprinted in Balbo, Lettere di politica e letteratura edite ed inedite precedute da un discorso sulle rivoluzioni (Florence: Le Monnier, 1855), 238–262. 97 Traniello, “Politica e storia nella formazione di Cesare Balbo,” 15. 98 Giuseppe Talamo, “La nazione italiana dalla storia alla politica nel pensiero di Cesare Balbo,” in Cesare Balbo alle origini del cattolicesimo liberale, 103; Traniello, Religione cattolica e stato nazionale, 149–151. 99 Traniello, Religione cattolica e stato nazionale, 129. 100 Traniello, “Politica e storia nella formazione di Cesare Balbo,” in Cesare Balbo alle origini del cattolicesimo liberale, 24. 101 De Luca, “L’Italia immaginata dai moderati,” 516–517. 102 Chiaramonte, Il dibattito sulle autonomie nella storia d’Italia, 23–27, 49, 63. Even in its title, Balbo’s Delle speranze d’Italia echoed a previous work by a Piedmontese liberal nobleman, Santorre di Santarosa (1783–1825), who in his Delle speranze degli italiani called for the war against Austria, a papal patronage of Italy, and a confederation of Italian monarchies. See Chiaramonte, ibid., 62–63. 103 On Balbo’s confederation plan, see Cesare Balbo, Delle speranze d’Italia, chaps. 4–6, pp. 35–53, chaps. 8–10, pp. 99–242. On the benefit of a stronger Piedmont for the other Italian states, see Balbo, ibid., 195–200. See, also, Candeloro, Storia dell’Italia moderna, vol. 2, 380–382. 104 Cesare Balbo, Della storia d’Italia dalle origini fino ai nostri tempi: Sommario. Edizione decima corretta e accresciuta dallo scrittore (Florence: Felice Le Monnier, 1856), 31. The first edition of the Sommario dates back to 1846.

Reconsidering primacy  193

105 106 107

108

109

110

111 112

113 114 115

See Treccani. Enciclopedia online, “Balbo, Cesare,” by Maria Fubini-Leuzzi, last accessed December 3, 2018. http://www.treccani.it/enciclopedia/cesarebalbo_%28Il-Contributo-italiano-alla-storia-del-Pensiero:-Storia-e-Politica%29/. Delle speranze d’Italia was dedicated to Vincenzo Gioberti. Casini, L’antica sapienza italica, 294–296. For example, Balbo’s disdain for the classical republican model, labeled as a system of repubblichette (literally, ‘petty republics’) and its emulation by revolutionaries and Mazzinians, is renowned; see Balbo Le speranze dell’Italia, 29–30. In all fairness, one might also wonder if Balbo wished to thoroughly explore the national past, given the (relatively) scarce space devoted in the Delle speranze d’Italia to the Italian antiquities. This lack of reference to national history in a political treatise can be explained by his reluctance to associate the sphere of nationality with the sphere of sovereignty. On the relationship between nation and political sovereignty in Balbo, see Talamo, “La nazione italiana dalla storia alla politica nel pensiero di Cesare Balbo,” in Cesare Balbo alle origini del cattolicesimo liberale, 106. On the timeline of Balbo’s publications, see Treccani. Enciclopedia online, “Balbo, Cesare,” by Maria Fubini-Leuzzi, last accessed December, 3, 2018. http://www.treccani.it/enciclopedia/cesare-balbo_%28Il-Contributo-italianoalla-storia-del-Pensiero:-Storia-e-Politica%29/. See, also, Massimiliano Pavan, “Cesare Balbo e la questione delle origini italiche,” Rassegna Storica del Risorgimento 48, no. 1 (January-March 1961): 63. On Balbo’s vision of the papacy, see Mario D’Addio, Fausto Fonzi, and Nicola Raponi, “Tavola Rotonda: Cesare Balbo tra storia e politica: alle origini del Cattolicesimo liberale in Italia,” in Cesare Balbo alle origini del cattolicesimo liberale, 172–177. On Machiavelli’s and Sismondi’s influence, see Maria FubiniLeuzzi “Contributi e discussioni su alcuni aspetti del pensiero storiografico di Cesare Balbo,” Rivista Storica Italiana 90 (1978): 841–843; Aldo G. Ricci, “Il Sismondi delle repubbliche italiane,” in Sismondi e la nuova Italia. Atti del Convegno di Studi Firenze, Pescia, Pisa, 9–11 giugno 2010, eds. Letizia Pagliai and Francesca Sofia (Florence: Edizioni Polistampa), 26; Ian Wood, The Modern Origins of the Early Middle Ages (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013), 120. On Balbo’s progressive vision of history, and on his vision of historiography as a ‘science’ to be framed/interpreted within the Christian Revelation of the Holy Scriptures, see Pavan, “Cesare Balbo e la questione delle origini italiche,” 65, 71–73; Fubini-Leuzzi, “Contributi e discussioni su alcuni aspetti del pensiero storiografico di Cesare Balbo,” 351. Pavan, “Cesare Balbo e la questione delle origini italiche,” 75–76; Casini, L’antica sapienza italica, 294–296; Albarani, Il mito del primato italiano nella storiografia del Risorgimento, 108. On Balbo’s anti-autochthonism and the authority of biblical cosmogony, see Cesare Balbo, Meditazioni storiche (Florence: Le Monnier, 1854), 32–34, 97–98; Pavan “Cesare Balbo e la questione delle origini italiche,” 67; on Balbo’s Creationism, see Martin Thom, Republics, Nations, and Tribes (London: Verso, 1995), 131. On the divine origins of languages and the alleged antecedence of Indian language and culture, see Balbo, Meditazioni storiche, 100, 255. Balbo, Meditazioni storiche, 441. Balbo, Delle speranze d’Italia, 196–197; see, also, De Francesco, The Antiquity of the Italian Nation, 82. Although criticized by some of his friends like Capponi, Balbo moved in the footsteps of the Livornese historian Micali, See Piero Treves, Lo studio dell’antichità classica nell’Ottocento, vol. 2 (Turin: Einaudi, 1976), 303–304. For the critique of Niebuhr, see Pavan, “Cesare Balbo e la questione delle origini italiche,” 64.

194  Reconsidering primacy 116 Giuseppe Micali, L’Italia avanti il dominio dei romani (Florence: Piatti, 1810), 2: 2. 117 On the various ‘primary migrations’ of the Japhetic ‘stocks’ and their timelines, see Balbo, Della storia d’Italia dalle origini fino ai nostri tempi: Sommario, 19–20; Balbo, Meditazioni storiche, 439–487. 118 On the Pelasgians as extraneous ‘Semites’ see Cesare Balbo, Della storia d’Italia dalle origini fino ai nostri tempi: Sommario, 21–22; Balbo, Meditazioni storiche, 431–433. On Balbo’s relationship with Pelasgomania, Casini, L’antica sapienza italica, 294–296. 119 Balbo, Della storia d’Italia dalle origini fino ai nostri tempi: Sommario, 31; Balbo, Meditazioni storiche, 478–484. As for Balbo’s opinion of the Etruscan and Etruscology, Pavan, “Cesare Balbo e la questione delle origini italiche,” 75–76. On the ‘Wars of independence’ of Italic peoples guided by Rome: Balbo, Delle 120 speranze d’Italia, 54–55; Balbo, Della storia d’Italia dalle origini fino ai nostri tempi: Sommario, 27–28; for this war as the cause of Roman hegemony see Balbo, ibid., 33. Balbo, Della storia d’Italia dalle origini fino ai nostri tempi: Sommario, 81–83, 121 83–84. Balbo did not believe in the Germanic ‘rejuvenation’ of Latin ‘bloods.’ See 122 Balbo, Della storia d’Italia dalle origini fino ai nostri tempi: Sommario, 88–89. On his view of the Lombards, see Maria Fubini-Leuzzi, “Cesare Balbo storico: lettura dei ‘Pensieri sulla storia d’Italia’,” in Cesare Balbo alle origini del cattolicesimo liberale, 98; Wood, The Modern Origins of the Early Middle Ages, 125. 123 On Balbo’s ‘fusionism’: Cesare Balbo, Storia d’Italia, vol. 1, bk. 2 (Turin: Giuseppe Pomba, 1830), 324–325; Cesare Balbo, “La fusione delle schiatte in Italia. Lettera agli estensori della Gazzetta d’Augusta” (1844) repr. Lettere di politica e letteratura edite ed inedite precedute da un discorso sulle rivoluzioni (Florence: Le Monnier, 1855), 287–290; Artifoni, “Le questioni longobarde. Osservazioni su alcuni testi del primo Ottocento storiografico italiano,” Mélanges de L'École française de Rome 119, no. 2 (2007): 302; Fubini-Leuzzi “Contributi e discussioni su alcuni aspetti del pensiero storiografico di Cesare Balbo,” 847; Wood, The Modern Origins of the Early Middle Ages, 122–125. On his ‘continuism,’ see Balbo, “La fusione delle schiatte in Italia,” 294–297; Enrico Artifoni, “Le questioni longobarde,” 301; Mauro Moretti and Ilaria Porciani, “Italy’s Various Middle Ages,” in The Uses of the Middle Ages in Modern European States: History, Nationhood, and the Search for Origins, eds. Robert J.W. Evans and Guy P. Marchal (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2011), 185. On his view of Manzoni’s dichotomous vision of Romano-Lombard relations, see Fubini-Leuzzi, “Contributi e discussioni su alcuni aspetti del pensiero storiografico di Cesare Balbo,” 846. On the ‘considerable’ Lombard linguistic legacy in Northern Italy, see Balbo Cesare Balbo, Storia d’Italia, 342–344; Balbo, Della storia d’Italia dalle origini fino ai nostri tempi: Sommario, 110–111. Balbo, “La fusione delle schiatte in Italia,” 287; Balbo, Della storia d’Italia dalle 124 origini fino ai nostri tempi: Sommario, 81–83. 125 On the conglomeration from family to nation, and the relationship between nazioni and genti, see Balbo, “La fusione delle schiatte in Italia,” 264, 271; as for the quasi-‘Thierryan’ explanation of societal divides, see Balbo, ibid., 281. Balbo, “La fusione delle schiatte in Italia,” 279 (emphasis added). 126 Balbo, ibid., 275–279 and following. See also, Talamo, “La nazione Italiana 127 dalla storia alla politica nel pensiero di Cesare Balbo,” in Cesare Balbo alle origini del cattolicesimo liberale, 104–105. 128 Balbo, Delle speranze d’Italia, 347–418.

Reconsidering primacy  195 For Balbo’s romantic ideas of nation, see Mario D’Addio, Fausto Fonzi, and 129 Nicola Raponi, “Tavola Rotonda. Cesare Balbo tra storia e politica: Alle origini del Cattolicesimo liberale in Italia,” 164; Veca, “‘Le nazioni cattoliche non muoiono’,” 24–25. Balbo’s Christian view of history, and Muratori’s legacy, see Fubini-Leuzzi, “Contributi e discussioni su alcuni aspetti del pensiero storiografico di Cesare Balbo,” 839, 851–854. 130 Balbo, Delle speranze d’Italia, 85. On Balbo’s interpretation of Gioberti’s tòpos the Christian nations, see Veca, “‘Le nazioni cattoliche non muoiono’,” 24–26. 131 Balbo, Della storia d’Italia dalle origini fino ai nostri tempi: Sommario, 19. 132 Benedetto Croce, Storia della storiografia italiana nel secolo decimonono, 3rd ed. (Bari: Laterza, 1947) 1: 145; Pavan, “Cesare Balbo e la questione delle origini italiche,” 65; Fubini-Leuzzi, “Contributi e discussioni su alcuni aspetti del pensiero storiografico di Cesare Balbo,” 836. 133 Balbo, Meditazioni storiche, 100–101. 134 Balbo, ibid., 257–258, 445–448; Balbo, “La fusione delle schiatte in Italia,” 267–268. On the Pelasgians as ‘Semites,’ see Pavan, “Cesare Balbo e la questione delle 135 origini italiche,” 78; on the critique to Indo-Europeanism, see Balbo, “La fusione delle schiatte in Italia,” 269. 136 Balbo, Meditazioni storiche, 98–99. 137 Balbo, ibid., 101. 138 Balbo, Meditazioni storiche, 125–126 (emphasis added). I would also consider Balbo’s term ‘monstrosity’ in the full polysemy of the Latin understanding of Italian noun mostro (from the Latin monstrum) both intended as ‘horrible,’ and ‘unusual,’ or ‘exceptional.’ See Treccani. Vocabolario online, “mostro” last accessed January 18, 2019. http://www.treccani.it/vocabolario/mostro2/. 139 Balbo, Della storia d’Italia dalle origini fino ai nostri tempi: Sommario, 81–83; Balbo, Meditazioni storiche 123–124. On degeneration/degeneracy, ClaudeOlivier Doron, L’homme altéré: races et dégénérescence (XVIIe-XIXe siècles) (Ceyzérieu: Champ Vallon, 2016), 5–7. 140 Doron, L’homme altéré, 22. 141 Balbo, Meditazioni storiche, 126 (emphasis added). 142 Balbo, Delle speranze d’Italia, 343–344, 386; For Cuvier’s faith in Creation, see Balbo, Meditazioni storiche, 36. See Balbo, Meditazioni storiche, 99. On Prichard’s usage of Noachian genealo143 gies for his racial taxonomies, see James Cowles Prichard, Researches into the Physical History of Mankind (1826; repr., ed. George W. Stocking Jr., Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press, 1973), xxxiii–xlix (and in particular, xl–xli). Bethencourt, Racisms, 268. 144 145 Balbo, Meditazioni storiche, 431. 146 Balbo, ibid., 449 (emphasis added). Interestingly, in the same page, Balbo cites the 1841 work about Etruscan crania by the craniologist Garbiglietti. See Antonio Garbiglietti, Intorno a un cranio etrusco (Torino, 1841). On racial typology, and its fixism and atavism, see McMahon, The Races of Europe, 94, 105, 126. 147 Giacomo Durando, Della nazionalità italiana. Saggio politico-militare (Lausanne: S. Bonamici e Compagni Tipografi-Editori, 1846), 16–18, 405, 91, 200, 252. Paola Casana-Testore, Giacomo Durando in esilio (1831–1847). Belgio Portogallo 148 Spagna nelle sue avventure e nei suoi scritti (Turin: Istituto per la Storia del Risorgimento Italiano, 1979) 80; Bron, “The Exiles of the Risorgimento,” 351. 149 Bron, “The Exiles of the Risorgimento,” 439; Grégoire Bron, “Penser le Risorgimento italien depuis l’exil: l’exemple du libéral piémontais Giacomo Durando (1807–1894),” Cahiers de la Méditerranée 82 (2011): 50–52; 55–56.

196  Reconsidering primacy Durando, Della nazionalità italiana, 80–81, 90–91, 129; Chiaramonte, Il dibat150 tito sulle autonomie nella storia d’Italia, 122. 151 Durando, Della nazionalità italiana, 40. 152 Durando, ibid., 85. 153 Durando, ibid., 234. 154 Durando, ibid., 197. See, also, Silvana Patriarca, Italian Vices: Nation and Character from the Risorgimento to the Republic (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010), 33, 46. On the decline of the military role of the Italian aristocracy in the early modern age, with the notable exception of Piedmont, see Gregory Hanlon, The Twilight of a Military Tradition: Italian Aristocrats and European Conflicts, 1560–1800 (London: UCL Press, 1998). On Gioberti’s macelli napoleonici and condemnation of militarism, see Gioberti, Del Primato morale e civile degli italiani, 1: 75. See, also, De Luca, “L’Italia immaginata dai moderati,” 512. Durando, Della nazionalità italiana, 11. 155 156 I am referring, in particular, to the new historiography of the Risorgimento. For a general synthesis of the new Risorgimento historiography, see Maurizio Isabella, “Rethinking Italy’s Nation Building 150 Years Afterwards: The New Risorgimento Historiography,” Past and Present 217 (November 2012): 247–268. 157 Durando, Della nazionalità italiana, 16–18. See Aberto M. Banti, La nazione del Risorgimento. Parentela, santità e onore 158 alle origini dell’Italia Unita (Turin: Einaudi, 2000), 73. Italian Romanticism, for example, abounded with references to the fatherland 159 intended as an integral component of national identity. Italian nineteenthcentury nationalism, however, was not characterized by a phenomenon comparable to the German heimat, or an understanding of ‘motherland’ more physically and emotionally connoted, and resting on a collective imaginary of an idealized rural, local, and timeless ‘German-ness.’ However, the references to a nation intended as a physical space abounded, and influential leaders like Mazzini relied on geography to draw the natural boundaries of the Italian nation. On the German heimat, see Alon Confino, The Nation as a Local Metaphor: Württemberg, Imperial Germany, and National Memory, 1871–1918 (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1997). As for Giuseppe Mazzini, see Mazzini, “Dell’Unità Italiana,” La Giovine Italia 6 (1833): 79–122, repr. Mazzini, Scritti Editi e Inediti, vol. 3 (Imola: Galeati, 1907), 261–302; Mazzini, “De La Nationalité Au Propagador,” La Jeune Suisse 79 (March 30, 1836), repr. in Mazzini, Scritti Editi e Inediti, vol. 7 (Imola: Galeati, 1910), 331–351; Giuseppe Mazzini, Politica internazionale, repr. Mazzini, Scritti Editi e Inediti, vol. 92 (Imola: Galeati, 1941), 143–170. Aside from the specific (and dated) publications of the various geographical institutions, the only works which investigate the role of geography in the Risorgimento and, more specifically, the relationship between geography and nation-building are by Maria Luisa Sturani, Gilles Pécout, Edoardo Boria, and Bianca Maria Mennini. See Maria Luisa Sturani, “I giusti confini dell’Italia. La rappresentazione cartografica della nazione,” Contemporanea. Rivista di storia dell’800 e del ‘900 1, no. 3 (July 1998): 427–446; Gilles Pécout, “La carta d’Italia nella pedagogia politica del Risorgimento,” in Immagini della nazione nell’Italia del Risorgimento, eds. Alberto M. Banti and Roberto Bizzocchi (Rome: Carocci, 2002), 69–87; Edoardo Boria and Bianca Maria Mennini, “Il discorso della nazione in Italia dal Risorgimento al Fascismo attraverso le carte geografiche,” in Costruire una nazione. Politiche, discorsi e rappresentazioni che hanno fatto l’Italia, eds. Valeria Deplano and Silvia Aru (Verona: Ombre corte, 2013), 17–44. 160 Patriarca, Numbers and Nationhood, 1.

Reconsidering primacy  197 Harald Westergaard, Contributions to the History of Statistics (London: King, 161 1932), 136–171. See Patriarca, Numbers and Nationhood, 7. 162 Patriarca, ibid., 14. 163 Patriarca, Italian Vices, 23. 164 Patriarca, Numbers and Nationhood, 123. 165 Durando, Della nazionalità italiana, 18. 166 Durando, ibid., 17. 167 Durando, ibid., 19–20, 405. 168 Durando talks about an imaginary line between the mouth of the Magra and Marecchia rivers near to the cities of La Spezia in Liguria and Rimini in Emilia-Romagna. See Durando, Della nazionalità italiana, 84–85. 169 Patriarca, Numbers and Nationhood, 66–69. 170 Such a relationship was clearly stated in this passage: ‘By nationality, I refer to the political union of various populations which are bound naturally by their geographic location and artificially by their language, customs, traditions, laws, as well as common interests. Such artificial conditions are, in my opinion, the inevitable consequence of the greater or lesser societal tie determined by the different conformation of the territory in which these populations had settled. The geographic condition and position determine in an unalterable way the geostrategic character of a country, and the better nationalities are capable of being cohesive, the more this character of the territory is combined with their social and political conditions.’ See Durando, Della nazionalità italiana, 58–59. 171 Durando, Della nazionalità italiana, 65–66 (emphasis added). 172 Durando, ibid., 66. 173 Durando, ibid., 73. 174 Durando, “Questione delle capitali,” (1846) Archivio del Museo Nazionale del Risorgimento Italiano di Torino [from now on MRT], Archivio Durando, 145/10, fol. 9. 175 Durando, Della nazionalità italiana, 65–66. On the “Caucasian hypothesis” see Augstein, “From the land of the Bible to the Caucasus and beyond,” 62–72. Durando, “Questione delle capitali,” (1846) MRT, Archivio Durando, 145/10 176 fols. 14–15. Durando, “Genesi della nazionalità” (1846), MRT, Archivio Durando, 145/27, 177 fol. 9r. On the equivalence of linguistic groups to proper ‘biological’ races by Romantic ethnography, see McMahon, The Races of Europe, 25. Durando, Della nazionalità Italiana, 88–89, 232. Unfortunately, Durando’s 178 works display no particular reference to ‘physiology,’ nor specifically to any naturalist, zoologist, or physician. As for the formula formazione fisiologica delle stirpi (‘physiological formation of stocks’) referred to the phenotypical diversification of human species, see Gioberti, Del primato morale e civile degli italiani, 2: 186. 179 Durando, Della nazionalità Italiana, 65–66,136, 425–427. 180 Durando, ibid., 133–134. 181 Durando, “Popoli soli,” (1844) MRT, Archivio Durando, 145/19, fol. 1; Durando, “Italia Neo-Romana” (1845) MRT, Archivio Durando, 145/10, fol. 42. Durando, Della nazionalità italiana, 71–82, 123–124, 132. 182 Durando, ibid., 73. On Balbo’s vision of Rome and of the ‘Wars of independ183 ence’ of Italic peoples guided by Rome, see Balbo, Delle speranze d’Italia, 54– 55; Balbo, Della storia d’Italia dalle origini fino ai nostri tempi: Sommario, 27–28; for these wars as the cause of Roman hegemony, see Balbo, ibid., 33. 184 On the capacity of the monarchical government to consolidate nation-building processes, see Durando, Della nazionalità italiana, 146; on the success of

198  Reconsidering primacy Piedmont and Naples in having amalgamated their ‘ethnographic agglomeration,’ see Durando, ibid., 154–156. 185 Durando, ibid., 74–75, 85. 186 The term ‘eugenics’ was in fact coined by British statistician and anthropologist Francis Galton (1822–1911) only in 1883, and a proper eugenica formally took shape in Italy only in 1912. For Galton’s coinage of the term and the development of eugenics in the Peninsula, see Francesco Cassata, Molti, sani, forti. L’eugenetica in Italia (Turin: Bollati-Boringhieri, 2006), 9–51. 187 See De Francesco, The Antiquity of the Italian Nation, 133–155; Maria S. Quine, “Making Italians: Aryanism and Anthropology in Italy during the Risorgimento,” in Crafting Humans: From Genesis to Eugenics and Beyond, ed. Marius Turda (Gottingen: V&R Unipress, 2013), 141–152.

6

Epilogue and conclusions The ‘science of nations’

The 1850s represented a crucial period for the achievement of national unification under the leadership of the Kingdom of Sardinia, to the point of being retrospectively labeled as the Decennio di preparazione (literally, the ‘Decade of Preparation’). However, they also marked a crucial turning point in the studies of the ‘first Italians.’ During those years, Italy underwent an ‘ethnographic turn’ in which the new ethno-anthropological disciplines emerged as the ‘science of nations’ based on the observation of quantifiable ‘data’ and ‘facts’ provided by comparative linguistics and the natural history of man. In this new cultural climate, the dyad language-race acquired the status of the only ‘rational’ basis of nationality, while other cultural and historical aspects were rapidly dismissed as either unreliable or unverifiable through an ‘objective’ observation. In short, the authors examined in this chapter—whether ethnologists such as Giovenale Vegezzi Ruscalla and Giustiniano Nicolucci, statisticians such as Cesare Correnti and Pietro Maestri, or even jurists such as Pasquale Stanislao Mancini—reduced nationality to the interaction of the two essential aspects of language and race. Language was regarded as the main marker of nationality as both the tracer of its origin and historical development and for its capacity to structure the words, and therefore the concepts, the mindset, and the ‘character’ of a given ethnicity. Race, for its part, was considered the physiological ‘carrier’ of all inherited physical and psycho-moral traits of a people. A famous statistical publication once referred to race and language through a particularly apt metaphor as the ‘body and soul’ of ‘ethnography,’ and therefore the two ‘physiological’ and ‘spiritual’—although interdependent—fundamental elements of nationality. More importantly, in the 1850s, the idea of race seemed to lose, or at least dramatically simplify, its complex polysemy, and acquire its ‘modern’ understanding of the common physical and morphological peculiarities of a given human group. In all fairness, this increasing ‘epidermalization’ of the concept of race had been already at work in the previous decades, as seen in the works of Giuseppe Micali, Giandomenico Romagnosi, Carlo Cattaneo, Cesare Balbo, and others. It was with the ethnological research of Vegezzi-Ruscalla, however, that the term razza became explicitly linked to the findings and taxonomies of physical anthropology, and separated—with

200  The ‘science of nations’ certain discursive ambiguities and tensions—from its previous broader meanings such as stock, lineage, or bloodline. And although the term ‘anthropology’ came into vogue only at the end of the following decade in the 1860s, Vegezzi-Ruscalla and, most of all, Giustiniano Nicolucci, indelibly linked the idea of race to the physical man, observed from a naturalistic and a medical-anatomical perspective. The works of Nicolucci, and in particular his 1857–1858 monograph Delle razze umane, marked both the grand entry of physical anthropology in the search of the ‘first’ Italians and the ‘importation’ of racial Aryanism into the Peninsula. For the first time, the adjective Aryan was intended foremost as a phenotype denoting white Caucasian people. In this sense, Nicolucci proved the extent to which Italian ethnological studies were au courant with their French, German, and British counterparts, and, therefore, that Italy kept pace with scientific innovations of the era. Furthermore, as this study will demonstrate, Nicolucci elaborated his own peculiar form of Aryanism, but was neither the only advocate nor the most controversial proponent of this new racial theory. On the eve of the Unification, the Italian public—or at least its most educated portion—was provided with a narrative according to which the Italian nation represented one of the best ‘stocks’ of an Aryan race destined to rule and expand across the entire globe. This re-elaboration of European self-representation vis-à-vis the rest of the world would have significant repercussions in the following decades. On the other hand, we should forgo an anachronistic interpretation considering fascist racist ideology as the direct filiation of mid-nineteenth-century Aryanism, and, particularly, of its ‘Nicoluccian’ version. The presence, however, of such a full-fledged racial paradigm incontrovertibly refutes the long-established historiographic interpretation of a ‘race-blind’ or ‘race-less’ Risorgimento culture. After all, the institutionalization of anthropology in 1869 occurred just a few years after the Unification and the creation of the new Kingdom of Italy: a major scientific breakthrough that would have been completely unexplainable had the Risorgimento intelligentsia been extraneous to the development of a full-fledged racial discourse. Yet, after statehood was achieved and unification revealed its first shortcomings, studies on race seemed to diverge from the mere search of the origin of the nation to offer their services to the nation-building process. In a mindset that supported, among other things, a peculiar overconfidence in the science and progress of Positivism, the new Italian anthropology would cease to look for the ‘first Italians,’ increasingly committing itself to the study and the amelioration of ‘living bodies’ and, therefore, to the ‘making’ of the modern Italians.

The ‘ethnographic turn’ of the 1850s ‘Positive facts,’ nation, language… and race In more recent times, [scholars] have sought, with extreme curiosity, the uncertain memories of another historical kinship, very difficult to

The ‘science of nations’  201 determine and sometimes the object of a sterile debate, that is, the ties of origin and race. Such ties should not be overlooked, since it appears evident that although less crucial than [language], they constitute a cause of differences and diversity [among human groups] which is, at the same time, less spiritual and more primordial. These ties are gradually dissolving and changing, and seem to leave only a footprint represented by the different inflections of languages and by the peculiarities of the individual characters. Nevertheless, we will consider race as important as language, since they both constitute the fundamental elements of ethnography and, so to say, its same body and soul.1 It is difficult to explain why Italian culture underwent an ethnographic ‘turn’ in the 1850s, with a surge of publications mapping, describing, and quantifying the Italian nation and its past.2 In particular, the shift from an older and more polysemic understanding of race as lineage, stock, bloodline, to the more specific phenotypical and anthropometric connotation according to the natural history of man—closer to the ‘modern’ concept of race—has still not been exhaustively clarified in its all stages. Such a lacuna, far from merely affecting the Italian case, and may be explained by the fact that we lack a comprehensive history of nineteenth-century natural sciences written from a historiographical standpoint.3 Waiting for such a far-reaching endeavor, we can only formulate hypotheses in the light of what we currently know about the cultural and scientific trends in mid-nineteenth-century Europe. Accordingly, prior to examining some of the most influential figures related to the debate on the relationship between nation and race in 1850s Italy—the jurist Pasquale Stanislao Mancini (1817–1888), the statisticians Cesare Correnti (1815–1888) and Pietro Maestri (1816–1871), the linguist Giovenale Vegezzi-Ruscalla (1799–1885), and the anthropologist Giustiniano Nicolucci (1819–1904)—we will try to identify some probable long- and short-range factors informing a trend that influenced both Italy and the whole of Europe.4 In effect, the 1850s can be considered as the decade inaugurating that process of ‘expulsion of linguistics’ which would characterize the ethnoanthropological disciplines in the following five decades. By mid-century, the ethno-anthropological disciplines came to privilege the analysis of the physical man at the expense of cultural man, and linguistics in particular, and the term anthropology increasingly indicated the study of humans primarily from a physical and physiological standpoint.5 This process was undoubtedly favored by the dramatic methodological improvements in empirical research, as well as the collection of medical and anthropometric data.6 The new approach was, in effect, stimulated by the new heuristic mindset of Positivism, which facilitated—and indeed mandated—the collection of data, and which can be seen as the culmination of that growing ‘enthusiasm for social counting’ seen across Europe at least since the early 1840s.7 The subsequent ‘orgy of quantification’—as it has been labeled—of 1860s European anthropology can be thus interpreted as the result of two

202  The ‘science of nations’ long-range epistemological trends: one represented by the growing confidence in quantitative analysis, and the other constituted by the increasing biologization of the human being.8 The erosion of biblical authority by the observation of ‘positive facts’ had been a trend dating back at least to the Enlightenment, and the French Revolution and the Napoleonic age had surely accelerated the secularization process, investing the scientific and the scholarly community in particular.9 Positivism, for its part, reinforced the trend by shifting the view on humans from socio-cultural to primarily biological beings subjected to natural laws.10 In the light of this, anthropology was increasingly perceived— especially in the Catholic countries—as an anti-clerical business, and expectedly was met with hostility by the Church.11 Such a dynamic did not prevent, however, ethno-anthropological disciplines from gaining a foothold in Italy: as recent scholarship had convincingly demonstrated, the Peninsula was by no means that ‘scientific backwater’ postulated by the previous studies.12 Rather, as in France, liberal opposition to the Roman Catholic Church fueled the institutionalization of Italian anthropology.13 The case of post-1849 liberal Piedmont epitomizes this struggle as a conflict over the secularization of the state and education. The small Subalpine state was positively affected by the ongoing formation of an Italian scientific community inaugurated by the Congressi degli scienziati italiani of the 1830s and 1840s, along with the relative easing of censorship which affected the entire Italian culture at least until the tragic events of 1848–1849.14 Moreover, the 1840s were the formative years of the generation of scholars who came to dominate the new linguistic and philological disciplines in the subsequent decades: at the eve of the national unification in 1861, Piedmont could boast its own school of Indology, Indo-European studies, and Orientalistica.15 Even if Italy still found itself in a pioneering stage of reconstructing the development of ethno-anthropological disciplines in the first half of the nineteenth century, we can hypothesize that the Peninsula played a significant role in this process, and that the capitals of the so-called ‘ancient states’—such as Turin, Florence, and Naples—were the main publishing centers for ethnology and the natural history of man.16 In addition to the broader factors stood the specificity of Piedmont as a liberal state—maybe one of the few surviving after the conservative 1849– 1851 backlash in all of Europe. The 1850s would mark, in fact, the transition of the Kingdom of Sardinia from a de iure constitutional to a de facto parliamentary monarchy, and the consolidation of center-left liberal alliance which was increasingly hegemonized by the statesmanship of Camillo Benso, Count of Cavour. He successfully guided the small kingdom through a series of liberal economic and political reforms, among them legislation limiting the influence and the power of the Roman Catholic Church in society and politics. The reforms, the anti-clerical policies, and the thriving parliamentary debate—in short, the clear political countertrend that these policies represented in the reactionary post-1849 Italy—made Piedmont

The ‘science of nations’  203 the haven for several political exiles coming from all over the Peninsula.17 All the figures examined in the present chapter were either Piedmontese (Vegezzi-Ruscalla) or fled to Piedmont as political exiles (Mancini, Correnti, and Maestri)—or temporarily stayed in the Subalpine state (Nicolucci)— in order to avoid the repression following the debacle of the 1848–1849 liberal-democratic revolutions. Mancini on the elements of nationality The core of Pasquale Stanislao Mancini’s speculation on nationhood was represented by his lecture—Della nazionalità come fondamento del dritto delle genti (‘On nationality as the foundation of the law of nations’)— delivered on January 23, 1851 at the University of Turin.18 The presence of the Avellino-born jurist in the Piedmontese academia was purposeful: Mancini—who would eventually play key roles in liberal Italy’s government as the minister of justice (1875–1878) and of foreign affairs (1881–1885)— started his political career as an exile following his involvement in the short-lived constitutional Neapolitan government of 1848–1849.19 The lecture delivered in Turin and inexplicably neglected by Italian historiography attempted to demonstrate that the nation as a natural entity pre-existed the state, and therefore ought to be considered the elementary, primeval, organic, ‘monad’ of international law. Such an attempt, although unsuccessful, revealed the extent to which the primacy of the state—and in particular the legitimacy of the supremacy of the dynastic state over nationality—came to be contested by the national movement. Through obscure terminology, which disclosed, among other sources, the influence of Giandomenico Romagnosi’s incivilimento theory, Mancini produced a new juridical doctrine to justify the supremacy of the nation as the ‘collective realization of freedoms’ of that ‘organic aggregate of individuals’ who composed it.20 In other words, Mancini maintained that if an individual held certain natural rights which preceded their relationship with political authority, then it followed that such rights were inborn also in the nation as a collection of individuals, no matter what form of government the nation took (republican, monarchical, unitary, federal, and so on).21 Besides Romagnosi, Mancini was inspired by several other thinkers, such as Mazzini, and, of course, Gioberti, whose contemporaneous Del rinnovamento civile d'Italia (1851) expressed similar views concerning the nation as the ‘basis’ for the future doctrine of public law.22 Undoubtedly, here is neither the place to discuss the relationship between positive and natural laws in Mancini’s juridical thought, nor to engage with the outdated and worn-out debate concerning his conception of nation and its belonging either to a naturalistic/ascriptive or to a voluntaristic understanding.23 Mancini considered the nation an ‘organic,’ pre-existing community, and, in the footsteps of Vico’s historicism, distanced himself from Contractualism and the idea of the transition from an imaginary state of

204  The ‘science of nations’ nature to a social contract, as the founding moment of human societies.24 From his perspective, the will of a given population to form a nation played a fundamental role in the constitution of a polity, even though he asserted that the community pre-existing the nationality and bounded by common origin, territory, and, most of all, language constituted already an abbozzo di nazionalità (literally, a ‘skeleton of nationality’).25 In tones that recall the developmental scheme of Romagnosi’s incivilimento, Mancini described the family and the nation not only as the only ‘natural’ forms, but also the ‘perpetual’ forms of human society.26 From this perspective, although the dyad race-origin represented just one constituent element of nationality, it also played a significant role, given the deep tie, as Mancini reiterated, between language and ‘stock.’27 The terms adopted by Mancini to describe racial descent are different and polysemic, ranging from common unità di origine, stirpe, to razza (respectively, ‘common origin,’ ‘stock,’ and ‘race’): the wide array of terms offers itself to several interpretations. Undoubtedly, when drawing on classical sources in order to demonstrate the persistence of innate racial traits within European populations, Mancini was relying on the older conception of race as stock, lineage, and bloodline, stressing the transmission of both physical and psycho-moral traits.28 Besides these older interpretations, however, Della nazionalità explicitly drew on the natural history of man to explain the ‘organic’ and ‘physiological’ difference among races and their origins, which Mancini illustrated through a detailed digression on the ethnogenetic theories of Georges Cuvier and James Cowles Prichard. In a specific passage, Mancini explicitly referred to the dispute surrounding the sprouting of the ‘Semitic and Syro-Arabic nations’ and the ‘Japhetic and Indo-European races,’ destined to improve the cultural and civilizational development of both the Eurasian and African continents.29 In addition to these and other seminal works by naturalists and anthropologists—in particular, Linnaeus, Buffon, Blumenbach, Desmoulins, Bory de Saint-Vincent, Edwards, and their respective racial taxonomies—Mancini also focused on the ongoing debate concerning the relationship between racial and societal dynamics. In another passage, he maintained that the coexistence of two different races on the same territory prevented the shaping of a proper nationality and created an obstacle that could only be overcome by the complete fusion or the absorption of one ‘stock’ by the other.30 After all, Mancini himself left no doubt regarding the importance of race, whether as stock, bloodline, variety, or type. In explaining socio-historical developments, he concluded that besides: …these short references […] would hopefully suffice to convince those who advocate the establishment of a course of the law of nations of the necessity of looking more closely into the natural history of man, in order that international relations can resort to science and, therefore, be grounded on a solid, unquestionable, and factual basis.31

The ‘science of nations’  205 Again, the necessity of grounding historical, political, and even juridical analyses on a ‘factual basis’ mandated the study, in the eyes of the law professor, of the ‘positive’ datum of the human bodies. How these bodies were counted and classified as a collective aggregate within the context of the nation was the focus of investigation by Cesare Correnti and Pietro Maestri. Correnti, Maestri, and the ‘body’ and ‘soul’ of ethnography In introducing their 1857–1858 Annuario statistico italiano (‘Italian annual statistical report’), statisticians Cesare Correnti and Pietro Maestri referred, respectively, to race and language as the ‘body’ and ‘soul’ of ethnography. This was no surprise, given the rising preeminence of the two criteria in the ethnological disciplines of their era. Nonetheless, what today seems a simple division between the two fundamental dimensions of each human being— that is, the innate corporal, ‘organic’ dimension on the one side, and the acquired ‘cultural’ dimension on the other—was, for the two statisticians, a much more complicated and intricate matter. Another important aspect that we tend to overlook is the fact that, under the sober and apparently ‘neutral’ guise of the socio-statistical inquiry, the reference to an Italian statistical report in 1857–1858 carried a blatant patriotic connotation. Since the 1830s, in effect, the advocates of national unification were aware of both the ‘descriptive’ and the ‘constructive’ power of statistics in reifying—through tables and maps—the nation as a concrete entity.32 By the end of the 1850s, the Milanese Cesare Correnti and Pietro Maestri had become two influential figures in the community of exiles that had to flee to the Kingdom of Sardinia following their involvement in the 1848–1849 revolutions. Although their political path gradually evolved from the initial democratic-federalist conviction to moderate pro-Piedmontese liberalism, their common experience in Milan and, in the case of Correnti, the collaboration with the Annali Universali di Statistica marked their lifelong commitment to statistics and ‘facts.’ Correnti, indeed, engaged in statistical analysis from the early 1840s and was eventually appointed the education minister in 1867. Maestri, for his part, was nominated in 1862 as a directing member of the central bureau of statistics in the new Kingdom of Italy.33 His original education as a physician may also explain the reason for his interest in race—and, most of all, in the interplay between physiological and cultural-moral factors—that would remerge in his later work of 1868.34 Ten years earlier, however, the focus of the Annuario rested on language, seen as the ultimate expression of national identity. In the introduction, the two editors reasserted both the pivotal role of language as a ‘marker’ of ethnicity and its ‘performative’ power. Thus, from this perspective, the analysis of language was recommended as the most objective tool for the identification of a given population and its origins: language, by shaping ideas, crucially contributed to the formation of feelings of belonging and identity. As Correnti and Maestri reiterated, ‘[to say] nation is to say a common

206  The ‘science of nations’ generation of thoughts: and thoughts originated from maternal language; it follows, then, that nation and language go hand in hand.’35 In short, according to the two scholars, the fact that one not only speaks, but also thinks in a given language makes language the most powerful tool for the transmission and the re-elaboration of concepts. This happens, however, according to a ‘native imprinting’ that transcends individual experience.36 When illustrating the main ‘stocks’ or ‘ethnographic families’ of Europe, the Annuario seemed to rely on the traditional taxonomies of linguistics (for example, Latin, Germanic, Slavic ‘stocks’) without reference to a phenotypical understanding of race. Even in describing the complex and diverse background of the Italians, Correnti and Maestri relied on the linguistic substratum as the ultimate evidence of the legacy of many diverse ethnicities populating the Peninsula well before Roman rule without referring to an allegedly Etruscan, Greek, or Celtic physical type. Accordingly, in reading this work, one might think that both statisticians still moved along the lines of the traditional ‘conflation’ of the linguistic and biological derivation of the preceding decades. Their reference to vaguer concepts such as sangue e schiatte (respectively, ‘blood’ and ‘lineages’) seems to indicate the diverse biological descent of the Italians that might confirm this interpretation.37 While it is almost impossible to decipher the authors’ overall views on the naturalistic understanding of race, the Annuario displays some passages which provide the readers with some hints of a certain familiarity with the natural history of man. As shown in the introductory epigraph of this section, Correnti and Maestri, although focusing on language, acknowledged the relevance of the studies on race to identify the vestigial influence of racial descent on the different ‘inflections’ as well as individual ‘characters.’38 Furthermore, in explaining the persistence of the pre-Roman ‘seeds’ in medieval Italy despite its precedent Romanization, their analysis resorts to the notion of ‘atavism’ by explicitly referring to the mechanism popularized by ‘naturalists.’39 Lastly, when describing the dynamics of the ‘fusion’ of ‘stocks’ in Italian history, both authors emphasized its benefits from the ‘physiological’ and, worthy of note, ‘phrenological’ standpoint.40 This qualifier, in particular, leaves no doubt about the familiarity with a field of study—phrenology—increasingly used by mid-century anthropologists to explain the moral, psychological, and especially cognitive differences among human races intended as different natural varieties, or even different species, of the human being.41 If all these aspects combined provide us with some simple hints, maybe the strongest of evidence of a new approach toward race came from Correnti and Maestri themselves, who allowed the Turinese linguist and philologist Giovenale Vegezzi-Ruscalla to enrich their Annuario with his Abbozzo etnografico dell’Europa (‘Ethnographic Sketch of Europe’) and, by doing so, provide us with one of the most significant documents of Italian linguistics and, particularly, the race-thinking of the 1850s. As we will see, the Abbozzo, by attempting to elaborate the proper

The ‘science of nations’  207 approach and classifications in the ‘science of nation,’ provides us with the first clear-cut—‘modern’—definition of race intended first and foremost as a physical marker.

Giovenale Vegezzi-Ruscalla and the ‘science of nations’ What is nation? Developing Mancini’s theory of nationality In the past twenty years, a particular desire emerged in this part of the advanced world. In general, the peoples [of Europe] have been paying great attention to their origins, and, therefore started to feel extremely attracted to the peoples of their own descent. Politics and ideologies have been inspired by the tendency of the nationalities of the same stock to reunite. Conversely, the governments and states dividing nationalities thus far now threaten to collapse. Thus, the question of kinship and relationship among nations has acquired such paramount importance that it no longer occupies the minds in the scholarly community alone, but also in the whole of educated society.42 It is no exaggeration to say that perhaps nobody could have been more clear than the Turinese linguist and philologist Giovenale VegezziRuscalla in explaining the close interdependence between the fortune of ethno-anthropological disciplines and the rise of nationalism. One year later, in 1859, in an article entitled Della necessità di un corso di etnologia (‘On the necessity of an ethnology course’), Vegezzi-Ruscalla urged the Subalpine intelligentsia to consider, in light of legitimate political aspirations (but also the confusion surrounding the proper definition of nationality), the establishment of a university course on ‘ethnology’ as a proper ‘science of nations’ to complement courses on history, philosophy, and law.43 This class—as Vegezzi-Ruscalla insisted—would have been an appropriate ‘completion’ of the task undertaken a few years before by the jurist Pasquale Stanislao Mancini. And, in effect, the first public intervention of Vegezzi-Ruscalla on the theme of nationality—the pamphlet Che cos’è nazione. Ragionamento (‘What is nation. Argumentation’)—dated back to 1854 and consisted of a response to Mancini’s ‘On Nationality.’ In discussing Mancini’s theory, Vegezzi-Ruscalla argued that, although other aspects were undoubtedly relevant, the fundamental trait of nationality resided in language. It must be said that Vegezzi-Ruscalla, born in a family of the Turinese upper class and friend of Camillo Benso since childhood—as well as, of course, an ardent nationalist—defended this argument throughout his entire life. Although well-versed in philology, epigraphy, linguistics, ethnography, and history, Vegezzi-Ruscalla never completed his studies. However, this did not prevent him from pursuing a brilliant career in government and academia, as well as what might be defined as the cursus honorum of

208  The ‘science of nations’ the liberal Piedmontese of his time.44 Besides his appointments to various governmental agencies, and finally to the professorship of Romanian language and literature at the university of Turin in 1866, in 1857 VegezziRuscalla joined the moderate patriotic association Società Nazionale Italiana (‘Italian National Society’) which advocated the unification of Italy under the guidance of the Kingdom of Sardinia. Eventually, he became a deputy in the Sardinian and the newly formed Italian parliament (1860–1865).45 In short, he was the representative of the Piedmontese liberal intelligentsia of his age, combining his scholarly endeavor with his commitment to the Italian national cause. As for his research, Vegezzi-Ruscalla is included among the pre-Ascolian linguists, or the generation of scholars preceding the research of Graziadio Isaia Ascoli. This intellectual milieu shared an ‘ethno-historical’ approach that worked to reconstruct the origin of languages, and therefore the origins of nations. Vegezzi-Ruscalla himself referred to language as the ‘birth certificate of nations.’46 From the date of publication of his 1854 pamphlet onward, VegezziRuscalla established a direct connection between language and nationality, and indeed, nationality for him basically consisted of a population speaking the same language.47 As for the definition of language, he defined as a language the dialect that eventually evolved and ascended to the rank of a written and literary language. In this sense, like Carlo Cattaneo, Bernardino Biondelli, and other pre-Ascolians, he conceived of dialect not as a corrupted form of its respective literary language, but as an anterior form of it which would reveal, through an analysis of the linguistic substratum, the presence of diverse primeval populations.48 From this perspective, linguistic and philological investigation for Vegezzi-Ruscalla represented the most effective means of reconstructing the descent of nations and populations, with an important caveat that he first expressed in 1854, and eventually developed in his 1857–1858 essay and 1859 article. The ‘stock’ and the ‘race’: toward the ‘modern’ understanding of race (and racism) As early as 1854, in his pamphlet ‘What is Nation,’ Vegezzi-Ruscalla already warned his readers not to confuse the genti (‘populations’) with the razze (‘races’).49 Considering the extreme polysemy surrounding the lemma razza and its synonyms in the authors examined to this point, modern readers might wonder if the Turinese linguist found himself amidst a great deal of confusion. Yet, Vegezzi-Ruscalla himself came to the rescue of his readers by defining the genti as those populations speaking the languages belonging to the same ‘linguistic family,’ and the razze as the classification of man from the ‘anthropological’—rather than ‘ethnographic’—standpoint, that is, the physical and (psycho-) moral aspect.50 With this short clarification, Vegezzi-Ruscalla expounded an argument that he would eventually develop both in the Abbozzo etnografico dell’Europa, and still more clearly in Della

The ‘science of nations’  209 necessità di un corso di etnologia: the conceptual distinction between anthropology, ethnography, and ethnology. Unlike our modern understanding, Vegezzi-Ruscalla considered anthropology a mere branch of zoology, therefore providing the study of human beings primarily from their physical and behavioral standpoints. As for the ‘ethnography,’ he approached it as a simple description of human cultural and societal differences.51 At the intersection—and synthesis—of these two approaches stood ‘ethnology’ for Vegezzi-Ruscalla, or the combination of ethnographic description, linguistic and philological analysis, together with an anthropological classification and examination of human bodies and physiology. This approach, envisaging anthropology as a zoological (and, if we may add, a medical sub-field) of ethnology, did not prevent VegezziRuscalla from assigning a primary role to the inquiry on the physical man. For him, ethnology was founded upon the explicit axiom according to which physical and physiological diversity implied a moral and intellectual diversity. Therefore, linguistics and craniology were considered complementary tools to assess the level of cultural and intellectual development of a given population.52 In short, the Piedmontese scholar, even though in a later writing he called the ‘unity of origin’ a ‘chimera’—and conversely highlighted the diverse racial background of each population—clearly posited congenital, biological, and developmental differences among different human ‘races.’53 The resulting ethno-racial taxonomies reflected this differentiation, which was articulated from a linguistic and phenotypical perspective. In the Abbozzo, European populations are classified according to a taxonomical ladder envisaging the ceppo, the famiglia/stirpe, and nazione (respectively, ‘stock,’ ‘family/lineage,’ and ‘nation’) crisscrossing, in their turn, with the razza (‘race’) which was, as Vegezzi-Ruscalla specified, considerata antropologicamente (‘anthropologically considered’), meaning from the physical and physiological standpoint.54 Therefore, in illustrating the Italians, VegezziRuscalla grouped them under the ‘Aryan stock,’ the ‘Latin family,’ and, of course, the Italian ‘nationality.’ Apart from the novelty represented by the lemma ‘Aryan’—that we will shortly examine—this classification seemed hinged on a linguistic criterion illustrating the diversification of modern Europeans from the common Indo-European primeval idiom. However, the constant references to terms suggesting kinship such as ‘stock,’ or ‘family,’ or the mention of the ‘qualities’ of the stirpi and ceppi (‘lineages’ and ‘stocks’) do not suggest a mere linguistic derivation (at least, according to our standard of language as a culturally acquired trait), but actual biological descents. As for razza, Vegezzi-Ruscalla prefixed it with the adjective ‘anthropological’ or the adverb ‘anthropologically’ to clarify his reference to a mere physical categorization of human groups.55 Therefore, as he clarified in his long listings of the Eurasian populations, ‘stock’ and ‘race’ did not necessarily coincide, and populations belonging to the same ‘stock’ could display a different ‘anthropological race.’56 This distinction, though marred by inconsistencies and ambiguities—among them,

210  The ‘science of nations’ his failure to specify the racial taxonomy which he adopted— demonstrates an attempt to organize both the discipline and the usage of the term razza only in relation to physical traits. In short, with Vegezzi-Ruscalla, we are witnesses to the definitive emergence of the ‘modern’ understanding of race indicating the physical morphological peculiarities of a given human group.57 This ‘epidermalization’ of the concept of race with the introduction of ‘anthropological race’ did not prevent Vegezzi-Ruscalla from using the broader notion of ‘race’ (associated with concepts like ‘stock’ and ‘lineage’) to describe the transmission of congenital, hereditary traits in human groups.58 He considered societal and cultural development as derivative of the physical and physiological development of a given stock or lineage, and referred to the existence of ‘more intelligent’ and ‘less intelligent races’ without specifying, whether he referred to race as a ‘stock,’ the ‘anthropological race,’ or both. These ambiguities and tensions are traceable in Vegezzi-Ruscalla’s choice of the term Aryan to group the populations speaking Indo-European languages and to identify their ethnic, biological ancestors, provided with their culture, ethos, and, most of all, ‘character.’59 Along the lines of this emerging racial paradigm, Aryans were placed in opposition to the Semites in their own aesthetic, philosophical, and religious/spiritual inclinations. Furthermore, their historical ‘superiority’ over other ‘stocks’ was, in the eyes of Vegezzi-Ruscalla, confirmed by their relentless expansion across the globe.60 All these elements, in particular the ‘Aryan-Semite’ dichotomy, lead us to believe that apart from the explicit credit to Nicolucci’s Aryanism in Delle razze umane, Vegezzi-Ruscalla was fully conversant with the broader European debate around the Aryans, given also his mention of authors like Friedrich Schlegel, Franz Bopp, August Schleicher, but, most of all, Friedrich Max Müller, Arthur De Gobineau, and Adolphe Pictet.61 The last three authors, in particular, surely influenced Vegezzi-Ruscalla’s idea of European ethnogenesis as derivative from the ‘superior’ Aryans’ invasion of Europe, and their subjugation and gradual absorption of the autochthonous pre-Aryan populations, which he identified with the ancestors of the modern Turanians. With the term ‘Turanian’—explicitly borrowed from Rasmus Rask and Müller—Vegezzi-Ruscalla grouped all those Eurasian populations speaking what had been traditionally defined as the non-Indo-European Uralo-Altaic languages.62 The reference to a primeval Eurasian world populated by the ‘inferior’ Turanians—eventually conquered and absorbed by the ‘superior’ and more intelligent Aryans—enabled Vegezzi-Ruscalla to frame the whole European history in a long series of uninterrupted expansions and triumphs. This narrative matched his outspoken prejudice and racism toward non-white, non-European peoples.63 His adherence to Aryan migration theory (and his racist undertones toward the ‘non-Aryans’) was not exempt, however, from deep tensions and contradictions. Vegezzi-Ruscalla was indeed the first one in admitting that, according to the findings of linguistics

The ‘science of nations’  211 and philology, and, also, craniology, some European populations could possess a significant share of ‘pre-Aryan’ Turanian ancestry. Along the lines of many scholars of his age, also Vegezzi-Ruscalla believed that the average higher rate of brachycephaly (broad-headed skull) in modern Piedmontese and Ligurian crania stood as the indisputable evidence of their descent from the Ligures: the primeval Turanian inhabitants of the Peninsula. Paradoxically, when nationalist confrontation dictated the defense of the Italianness of a given territory, even the allegedly ‘inferior’ Turanians were ‘enlisted’ for the national cause. Thus, in 1860, when the Kingdom of Sardinia agreed to surrender the city of Nice to the French Second Empire in exchange for the aid provided in the Second War of Independence, Vegezzi-Ruscalla defended the Italianness of the city and its outskirts basing on the brachycephalic—and, therefore, Ligurian/Turanian—prehistoric crania there rediscovered. It may not surprise that, amidst the nationalist mobilization and outrage for the loss of a city that gave the birth, among others, to key-figures of the Risorgimento like Giuseppe Garibaldi, the thorny question of the ‘non-Aryanness’ of these alleged first ‘Italians’ was quickly moved to the background.64

Giustiniano Nicolucci: Bible, ‘Pelasgomania,’ and Aryanism The ‘father’ of Italian anthropology The Pelasgian family outdoes in beauty all others [in the Aryan race]. It has provided us with the models for Apollo, for Medici’s Venus, for Dancers of Canova, for Tenerani’s Psyche.65 Many of the themes approached by Vegezzi-Ruscalla were already extensively treated by Giustiniano Nicolucci, whom the Turinese philologist credited for having produced the most comprehensive study on race of his time: Delle razze umane. Saggio etnologico (‘On human races. Ethnological essay’), published in Naples between 1857 and 1858. Undoubtedly, by that time nobody in Italy had produced a comprehensive, far-reaching study on human ‘races’ by gathering all the findings of contemporary ethnoanthropological research. This endeavor, along with other several ethnological works on primitive and ancient Italy in the 1860s, earned him the epithet of ‘father’ of Italian anthropology (and, if we may add, also of Italian prehistoric archaeology).66 More recently, it has been pointed out that Nicolucci can be credited for having introduced the idea of Aryanism in the Peninsula, and regrettably of having also laid the foundations of Italian scientific racism.67 Nicolucci was born in 1819 in the Kingdom of Two Sicilies not far from Naples, where he completed his studies in medicine in 1845. By that time, the capital of the Bourbon kingdom had become, especially after the Napoleonic parenthesis of Joachim Murat (who founded the university zoological

212  The ‘science of nations’ museum in 1811, and the laboratory of general and pathological anatomy in 1816), one of the main scientific centers of Europe. The director of the museum, Giosuè Sangiovanni (1775–1849), had studied in France under the guidance of Georges Cuvier and Jean-Baptiste Lamarck. The Seventh Congress of Italian Scientists, which took place in Naples in 1845, was the occasion for Sangiovanni’s inauguration of a new building of the museum, and Nicolucci made his grand entry by reading a paper at the conference in the presence of King Ferdinand II. This episode, along with the ‘mild’ punishment suffered from having participated in the 1848 revolution, as well as his undisturbed career in the 1850s, led some historians to question the effectiveness of his commitment to the Risorgimento cause, not to mention his alleged Mazzinianism.68 As far as concerns the present research, however, Nicolucci always explicitly linked his scholarly endeavors to the discovery of the Italian ethnic past, bringing to bear all his expertise as a versatile physician, anatomist, zoologist, naturalist, and ethnologist to achieve such a goal.69 As has been noted, Delle razze umane consisted first and foremost of a craniological study in which, through a clear anatomo-medical approach, the human cranium was primarily examined for being the ‘case’ of the brain, and therefore the ‘seat’ of human intelligence and diversity. This approach derived, in particular, from Johann Friedrich Blumenbach’s focus on the cranium as the most indicative trait of physical and moral attributes.70 Therefore, Nicolucci’s racial classification departed from Blumenbach’s craniological taxonomies, but included Anders Retzius’ cephalic subdivision between dolichocephalic and brachycephalic crania, and lastly, Petrus Camper’s calculation of the facial angle.71 Another debt to Blumenbach—whom he defined as the ‘father of ethnology’—was, of course, his monogenist theory surrounding the genesis of human species. This approach was also reinforced by his admiration for another proponent of monogenism, James Cowles Prichard, praised by Nicolucci as the greatest ethnologist of his age.72 In the footsteps of the British physician, he defined ethnology as the ‘history of the varieties of the human race’ and, by doing so, he immediately clarified at the beginning of his monograph his Christian monogenist stance in the broader ethnological debate surrounding the origin of the ‘races.’73 The influence of Prichard on Nicolucci’s research was considerable. The same understanding of ethnos as an all-inclusive concept subsuming both biological and cultural traits was indebted to the British physician, and Nicolucci’s ethnological taxonomies disclosed both anatomo-cranial and linguistic criteria.74 Another point of convergence with Prichard consisted of the staunch monogenism, derived from Nicolucci’s Roman Catholic beliefs, and in particular the influence of Vincenzo Gioberti. Like Gioberti, Nicolucci believed in the unity of human race as well as in the historical veracity of the book of Genesis. However, he hypothesized that, in order to let racial diversification develop, humans should have appeared well before the putative date of Creation (ca. 4,000 BCE).75 Quite interestingly, based

The ‘science of nations’  213 on the same biblical ‘philology,’ Nicolucci conjectured that the original man had surely been ‘red,’ and that environmental and social causes determined the transformation and consolidation of the original human species into different ‘varieties’ which were, along with the ‘type,’ the main subject of his ethnology.76 Nicolucci’s varieties were based on a re-elaboration of Blumenbach’s craniological model reinterpreted in the light of Prichard’s merging of philological and naturalistic criteria, without adopting the same racial taxonomy proposed by the British physician. In other words, we may define Nicolucci’s racial classification as a methodologically Prichardian reinterpretation of Blumenbach based on linguistics (which he constantly called ‘philology’).77 Accordingly, while Blumenbach had foreseen five natural ‘varieties,’ like the Caucasian, Mongolic, Ethiopian, American, and Malay, Nicolucci proposed, instead, five ‘races’: Ariana, Melanica, Tartaro-Sinica, Malaio-Polinesia, and Americana (respectively, ‘Aryan,’ ‘Dark,’ ‘TartarChinese,’ ‘Malay-Polynesian,’ and ‘American’).78 Following the same ‘philological’ methodology, each of these groups had to be divided in its turn into different ‘branches,’ and then ‘ethnic families.’ Thus, for example, the Italians were grouped as belonging to the ‘Pelasgian ethnic family’ of the ‘Indo-European branch’ of the ‘Aryan race.’79 This reference to an ethnolinguistic Aryan race superseding the (phenotypical) craniological Caucasian variety will be examined next since it reflected a newer approach, as well as persistent continuities in Italian culture. The Aryans and the ‘others’ The adhesion of Nicolucci to Aryanism has been the subject of recent attention, although it has not been completely clarified in all its details and peculiarities.80 There is no doubt that Nicolucci can be considered the ‘importer’ of racial Aryanism in the Italian cultural panorama. This judgment is motivated by the fact—never sufficiently emphasized—that Nicolucci seemed to be the first to explicitly associate the term Aryan with specific craniological traits, not only to a linguistic grouping. In his work, the term Aryan was used as a synonym of Caucasian, and not simply of IndoEuropean (or Indo-Germanic); it therefore became a proper category in physical anthropology.81 The fact, however, that Nicolucci cited the most renowned theorists of Aryanism (such as Bopp, Schlegel, Pictet, Eichhoff, Müller, de Gobineau, and Renan), as well as some of the most common ethnogenetic models surrounding these putative ancestors of the white people, does not imply that his approach to the question lacked some curious peculiarities that require further consideration.82 Like many authors associated with Aryanism, Nicolucci considered the Aryan invasions of prehistoric Europe from their cradle in the Eurasian plateaus (Iran, Afghanistan, Hindustan) to be the inception of European civilization. Also, he believed in the superiority of the Aryans, and, unsurprisingly, considered the Pelasgians—the ancestors of the Greeks and

214  The ‘science of nations’

Figure 6.1 The Etruscan, or the ‘modern’ Italian cranium. From Antonio Garbiglietti’s Brevi cenni intorno ad un cranio etrusco, Turin, 1841. Nicolucci, Delle razze umane, 1: 146.

The ‘science of nations’  215

Figure 6.2  An Italian Aryan ‘type’: the Etruscan. Nicolucci, Delle razze umane, 1: 144.

216  The ‘science of nations’ the Italics—the ‘first stock of the Aryan family.’83 This praise of the quasimythical Pelasgians owed, by his explicit admission, to Gioberti’s remarks about the cultural and ‘aesthetic’ superiority of this ancient population and its modern Italian and Greek heirs.84 Another probable borrowing from the Gioberti consisted in the absence of a leitmotif of many Aryanist authors: the ‘Aryan-Semite’ dichotomy. The growing ethnic, racial, and spiritual/ religious dualism opposing the Semites to the Aryans was the staple of certain Aryanists such as Renan.85 Conversely, in his Delle razze umane, Nicolucci argued for both the substantial physical identity and the linguistic affinity between the Indo-European and Semitic language families. In other words, he maintained that both the Aryan/Caucasian Europeans and the Middle-Eastern populations descended from the same ancestor, and that craniology and linguistics confirmed their common ethno-racial source.86 Thus, at least in his first work, Nicolucci ‘Aryanized’ the Semites by including them in the same ethnogenetic process giving birth to the Indo-Europeans. Furthermore, he did not equate the primeval Aryans to the stereotypical tall, blonde, blue-eyed, and strong-jawed individuals of the subsequent Nordicist Aryanism. Only later in the century, in the growing climate of colonial expansionism and diplomatic rapprochement with the ‘Germanic’ Germany and Austria-Hungary, did Nicolucci ‘nordicize’ the Aryans, and definitively separate them from their previous Semitic brethren.87 This complex interplay between research and politics is also traceable in one of the most evident ‘Giobertian’ legacies in Nicolucci: the interest in the ‘pre-Aryan’ Ligures, portrayed as the ‘first Italians.’88 In La stirpe ligure in Italia. Ne’ tempi antichi e ne’ moderni (‘The Ligurian stock in Italy. In ancient and in modern times.’), published in Naples in 1864, Nicolucci aimed both to reconstruct the appearance and the culture of this primeval ethnicity and to demonstrate the persistence of its ethno-racial traits in the modern Ligurians and Piedmontese. Drawing on a combination of classical sources, linguistics, and craniology, Nicolucci argued that the modern Italians were the result of the ‘mixture’ between the autochthonous Eurasian, pre-Indo-European Turanian and brachycephalic (broad-headed) Ibero-Ligures and the Indo-European, dolichocephalic (long-headed), Aryan invaders (Pelasgians, Celts, and so on). Thus, he concluded, the larger presence of dolichocephalic crania in modern Italian populations marked the pervasiveness of the ‘Aryanization’ process; conversely, the higher percentage of brachycephalic crania demonstrated the persistence of the old, native Ligurian type.89 The result was an extremely racialized reconstruction of Italian history, portrayed as a connubio (‘union’) of ‘stocks,’ which occurred, during the Bronze Age, between the Aryans and the Ligures. The latter were, according to Nicolucci, gradually subjugated and absorbed by the technologically superior Aryans. This Aryanist framing of Italian history rested, as we said, on a cross-reference of classical sources, linguistic studies, and osteological findings, but also relied on blatant methodological and theoretical flaws. The entire argumentation rested, in fact, as in the case

The ‘science of nations’  217

Figure 6.3 Craniological comparison: the Iberian-Ligurian Turanian brachycephalic cranium (below), and the Celtic Aryan dolichocephalic cranium (above). Nicolucci, Delle razze umane, 1: 188.

of Vegezzi-Ruscalla’s study on Nice, on the assumption according to which all dolichocephalic crania belonged to the Aryans and, conversely, that all the brachycephalic ones to the Turanians.90 Yet, when craniology gave way to a more comprehensive reconstruction of the two main ‘stocks,’ Nicolucci did not completely devaluate preIndo-European dwellers, even though he considered the superior Aryans as the real civilizers of the prehistoric Peninsula. The Ligures were presented as a frugal and martial population, endowed with a strong sense of independence, and most of all ‘the most predisposed to government.’91 In addition, by refuting the theories surrounding their alleged Northern African provenance, Nicolucci insisted on their indigenousness and eventually made them into ‘super-autochthonous’ Italians.92 Moreover, by relying on the typological comparison of ancient and modern crania, as well as the evidence provided by ancient iconography, Nicolucci argued for the perfect continuity and ‘atavistic’ persistence of the Ligurian ‘element’ in modern Italians. Expectedly, such an ‘element’ prevailed in the modern inhabitants of Piedmont and Liguria, who displayed a higher rate of brachycephaly, as well as a ‘character’ similar to the one of their pre-Aryan ancestors.93 If this series of resemblances between the ancient Ligures and their modern descendants

218  The ‘science of nations’ was insufficiently clear, by echoing Gioberti, Nicolucci presented the modern Piedmontese as the ones predestined to fulfill and complete that national unification previously achieved by their ancestors who had colonized, in the Stone Age, the entire Peninsula.94 The political subtext of such a reconstruction was evident: as the first frugal and gallant Ligures had unified the Peninsula, so did their modern heirs—the martial and austere subjects of the House of Savoy—with the Risorgimento. The parallel between the ancient Ligures and the modern Piedmontese offered several interpretations. On the one hand, their peculiar incomplete ‘Aryanness’ emphasized their extraneousness to the main national ethnic pattern, while on the other hand, it stressed their indigenousness vis-à-vis the rest of the Italians, and, therefore, their legitimate ‘destiny’ to guide national unification. The emphasis, however, on the idea of racial connubio—that is, an intimate union—revealed the problematic ethnocultural plurality of the Peninsula, as well as the hope for the harmonious integration of the new national community. Again, Nicolucci’s projection of national history onto the most remote past demonstrates— if we still need further evidence—the deep interdependence between nationalism and the rise of modern ethno-anthropological disciplines. From this perspective, the emergence of new disciplines moving toward the quantification of natural ‘facts’ and ‘data’ was the continuation of that fundamental quest for the ‘corporeality’ and ‘materiality’ of the nation, undertaken by previous generations of antiquarians, philologists, and several other scholars since the Revolutionary Era. Whether in the form of the interpretation of classics and mythology, complex philological investigations, or through accurate craniological comparisons, the quest for the ‘first Italians’ had only changed means and methodologies, but not its ultimate scope.

Conclusions: on making the Italians The case of Nicolucci, who after brief notoriety was destined to long oblivion, is emblematic of the challenges that the country and its scientific community faced during the decades following Unification. In the space of a few years, the Neapolitan naturalist passed from being considered a forerunner to being gradually marginalized by the Positivist circles, and his works dismissed as outdated or even lacking scientific dignity.95 The reasons for such neglect can be found in both the theoretical and methodological developments within the anthropological disciplines and in the main political changes that occurred in the Peninsula in the 1860s. The interaction between politics and ethno-anthropological research in that decade marks, among other things, the terminus ad quem term of this work. In the previous chapters, we have observed how the main focus of ‘ethnological’ research was the reconstruction of the national genealogy and the identification of the ‘first Italians,’ or even of the Italian proto-nationality.

The ‘science of nations’  219 The authors examined in the present work investigated the original provenance of the first Italians and of the civilizations that flourished in the Peninsula. This inquiry was gradually accompanied by increasing concern about spoken language—thought to be the most important ethnic identifier— and the ‘character’ and the appearance of the first Italians and their persistence across millennia. This research fueled the adoption of different theoretical models, methodologies, and approaches, and produced different theories which reflected (or reinforced) the political inclinations of each scholar. Thus, it was not uncommon to observe, as in the case of Vincenzo Cuoco, a strong correlation between the advocacy of a unitary state and the emphasis of one common racial origin. Likewise, the emphasis on the ethnocultural ‘plurality’ of pre-Roman Italy could be easily found in scholars with municipal, regionalist, or federalist convictions like Giuseppe Micali and Carlo Cattaneo. Others, like the Catholic Neo-Guelph intellectuals, focused more on the main catalysts of national integration and, unsurprisingly, found it in the Roman Catholic Church. Yet, this mutual influence between political convictions and research must not be oversimplified; the formulation of national identity was not always an intentional manipulation of the past, but rather the result of critical thinking in which scholarship often retained—or strove to retain—its autonomy. As has been noted, the study of race-thinking in nineteenth-century Europe also shows the extent to which scholars and intellectuals, although deeply influenced by nationalism, sought a new, authoritative scientific knowledge in an era of dramatic political and cultural transformation.96 This was evident in the ‘adoption’ of certain themes—such as the issue of the Etruscan or the Pelasgian origins— which, in spite of deep morphological continuities, were approached from significantly different theoretical and methodological perspectives, consequently deeply altering in their content. In short, the formulation of Italian descent or race (or descents and races) often resulted in narratives that were undoubtedly compelling suggestive but not always consistent, given the layering of different approaches and theories. What is certain, however, was that all these works attempted to identify Italy’s national ancestors and, therefore, their testimonials and relics. In other words, ethno-anthropological disciplines were primarily focused on the past, and, accordingly, on the ‘dead body’ of the nation. Thus, in spite of his undoubted contribution to the diffusion of modern anthropology in the 1850s, Nicolucci was still working within this milieu, and retained many aspects of the previous generations of scholars. His vast craniological collections were intended to support his typological diachronic inquiries that attempted to find a correspondence between the modern and the ‘first’ Italians.97 Therefore, his writing sought to reconstruct missing pieces of the national genealogy, and to reveal the ‘continuity’ between the modern Italians and their primeval ancestors. Even his late research reflected this approach, and subsequent anthropological works—whether on the Etruscans, pre-Roman Latium, or ancient and medieval Italy—were nothing

220  The ‘science of nations’ but a repetition of his earlier books without any significant theoretical and methodological innovation.98 With the successful completion of national unification in the 1860s, however, the quest for the national ancestor—and therefore the examination of crania and osteological relics—gave way to the study of the ‘living’ body of the nation. To paraphrase the famous sentence traditionally attributed to the Piedmontese statesman Massimo D’Azeglio, once Italy was ‘made,’ the quest for the national ancestors became less imperative, and anthropologists fully committed themselves to the ‘making of the Italians.’99 This commitment became increasingly pressing after the problematic socioeconomic diversity of the Peninsula emerged, and the troublesome annexation of the former Kingdom of the Two Sicilies dispelled any illusions about a rapid and smooth nation-building process. From the 1860s onward, research on early Italian ‘races’ primarily sought to provide anthropologists and other social scientists with data and ‘facts’ to support their plans of ‘national’ reform, and was not intended as a mere reconstruction of the national genealogical tree. Some historians have pointed out the increasing biopolitical dimension of post-1860 Italian anthropology which, with its increasing concern about governing and ameliorating the reproductive life and ‘public hygiene’ of the Italian populations, found itself anticipating many of the aspects of twentieth- century eugenics.100 This fact ultimately explains how the discipline became increasingly ‘medicalized,’ and many anthropologists—most of them, physicians and zoologists—focused more on the quantitative analysis of the physical, physiological, and demographic aspects of the nation, rather than on its history and culture.101 Such a method also reflected the new Positivistic mindset, according to which the human being ceased to be the special creature in God’s creation, and began to be considered and studied just like any other animal subjected to ‘natural laws.’102 A typical representative of this new mindset was the famous physiologist and anthropologist Paolo Mantegazza (1831–1910), who, in 1869, was awarded the first Italian chair of anthropology. In his view, anthropology chiefly consisted of the study of man ‘how we see and touch him,’ that is, as a living being, rather than an osteological remain.103 This perspective—more peculiar to a physician than to an ‘ethnologist’—left almost no space for the profound humanistic erudition of Nicolucci, who looked for the primeval ancestors by relying on his vast knowledge of linguistics, historiography, archaeology, and, most of all, the classics.104 Conversely, for Mantegazza and many of his peers, the search was, as we said, a matter of live bodies and minds: for them, primitive man could have been found more likely among the modern ‘savages’ living at the edges of the civilized world.105 Another major watershed in the history of Italian nineteenth-century natural sciences and anthropology was constituted by the rise of evolutionism, in particular, the theories of Charles Darwin, which seriously put into question the previous fixist and transformist interpretative models, along

The ‘science of nations’  221 with biblical creationism. Expectedly, the new debate surrounding Darwinian evolutionism had a profound impact on the natural sciences as well as on ethno-anthropological disciplines. In the decade following the publication of On the Origin of Species (1859), a thriving debate emerged in which Italian scholars anticipated some of the themes expounded by the English naturalist in The Descent of Man (1871) such as the evolution of the Homo Sapiens from the great apes.106 Another crucial contribution to the ethnoanthropological debate was represented by The Geological Evidences of the Antiquity of Man (1863) by a close friend of Darwin, the Scottish geologist Charles Lyell (1797–1875). In this study, Lyell refuted the traditional idea of a Mesopotamian or Egyptian cradle of humankind and introduced the concept of primitiveness. Moreover, he argued that paleo-anthropological findings—including the raw lithic artifacts—suggested an animal origin of man.107 All these new contributions, proving the animal origins of man as well as ‘extending’ the chronological development of humankind well beyond its traditional timelines, had an effect that we now fail to grasp, due to our familiarity with concepts like ‘evolution’ and ‘prehistory,’ and, most of all, our own secularized vision of human history. The nineteenth-century public, however, was not willing to unanimously accept theories that questioned the authority of the Bible or the Classics, like, for example, the myth of the Creation, or the thesis of a divine origin of language. Furthermore, the new theories concerning the origins of humankind made it extremely difficult to ‘extend’ national histories onto a distant past of quasi-bestial, non-God-like, or non-God-chosen ancestors. This bewilderment was surely felt by a consistent portion of Italian intellectuals, and, among them, Nicolucci, who would have a troubled relationship with Darwinian evolutionism for the rest of his life. After all, the hypothesis of the animal origins of man found several advocates in the anthropological community, but it was also met with extreme hostility and skepticism by many ‘patriots,’ who were, however, devout Roman Catholic. If the anthropologist Paolo Mantegazza, the naturalist Giovanni Canestrini (1835–1900), and the zoologist Filippo De Filippi (1814–1867) were enthusiastic, other prominent figures were outraged (not to mention, of course, the scorn of the Roman Catholic clergy). Among the fiercest opponents of evolutionism stood the moderate writer and linguist Nicolò Tommaseo (1802– 1874), who wrote a pamphlet condemning Darwinism and its epigones.108 For his part, Nicolucci remained ambivalent, and in his later works of 1884, 1886, and 1891 attempted to criticize Darwinism on naturalistic grounds, rather than religious or moral ones.109 Indeed, Nicolucci’s Catholic beliefs and, therefore, his trust in the account of Creation and the veracity of the book of Genesis did not explain on their own his skepticism toward the new evolutionary theories. As has been noted, even at the end of the century, Nicolucci remained first and foremost a ‘product’ of the 1840s: a period in which Italian naturalists were more interested in classificatory rather than in evolutionary issues. At most, he could only consider himself a follower

222  The ‘science of nations’ of Jean-Baptiste Lamarck’s transformism, and, based on the pivotal Philosophie Zoologique (1809) of the French naturalist, believed that the species transformed over the long run due to environmental causes.110 This vision allowed, of course, for a certain degree of dynamism in human species and its ‘varieties,’ and moreover, did not conflict with the idea of their ramification from an original man created by God. It was also consistent with Nicolucci’s substantial fixism when it came to the permanence of the ‘type,’ which made possible a projection of national history onto the most remote past.111 Yet by the time that Nicolucci indulged in his ‘affectionate’ portrayals of ‘national ancestors’ by stressing the profound continuities between ancient ‘Italians’ and their modern heirs, Italy had been already ‘made,’ and anthropology had moved well beyond the mere identification of such a kinship.112 The search for the first national ancestor became increasingly outdated and problematic after the findings of anthropologists, naturalists, and, most of all, paleontologists began to spread, and the primitive Italians did not recall the gallant Ligures or the noble Pelasgians, but rather the ‘savage’ and animal-like cavemen. Most of all, the consolidation of the nation-state privileged new scholarly interests and approaches, and the search for the biological roots of the Italian identity was subordinated to the broader, more cogent issue represented by the resolution of the problems inherent in the new, concrete, ‘bodily’ Italian nation. From this perspective, anthropologists became increasingly convinced that their discipline possessed a broader scope than mere ethnological inquiry, and started to consider science as a fundamental aid for the government and the policy-makers of the future. In this sense, after unification was achieved and the Italian identity secured and safeguarded by the new statehood, the consolidation of the nation became more relevant than the search for its ethno-racial ‘roots.’

Notes 1 Cesare Correnti and Pietro Maestri, eds. Annuario Statistico Italiano. Anno I, 1857–1858 (Turin: Tipografia Letteraria, 1857; Milan: Canadelli, 1858), 22–23 (emphasis added). 2 Silvana Patriarca, “Patriottismo, nazione e italianità nella statistica del Risorgimento,” in Immagini della nazione nell’Italia del Risorgimento, eds. Alberto M. Banti and Roberto Bizzocchi (Rome: Carocci, 2002), 120–121. For an in-depth analysis, see Silvana Patriarca, Numbers and Nationhood: Writing Statistics in Nineteenth Century Italy (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996). 3 Chris Manias, Race, Science and the Nation: Reconstructing the Ancient Past in Britain, France, and Germany, 1800–1914 (London: Routledge, 2013), 6. 4 Richard McMahon, The Races of Europe: Construction of the National Identities in Social Sciences, 1839–1939 (London: Palgrave McMillan, 2016), 20–24. On the inherently international dimension of the emerging ethno-anthropological disciplines, see Manias, Race, Science and the Nation, 6. 5 McMahon, The Races of Europe, 121, 20–27. 6 Stefan Arvidsson, Aryan Idols: Indo-European Mythology as Ideology and Science (Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press, 2006), 43. 7 Patriarca, Numbers and Nationhood, 1.

The ‘science of nations’  223 8 McMahon, The Races of Europe, 127. 9 Francesco G. Fedele, “Giustiniano Nicolucci e la fondazione dell’antropologia in Italia,” in Alle origini dell’antropologia italiana: Giustiniano Nicolucci e il suo tempo, eds. Francesco G. Fedele and Alberto Baldi (Naples: Guida, 1988), 37–41; Arvidsson, Aryan Idols, 60–62. 10 McMahon, The Races of Europe, 105. 11 McMahon, ibid., 32–33. 12 Maria S. Quine, “Making Italians: Aryanism and Anthropology in Italy during the Risorgimento,” in Crafting Humans: From Genesis to Eugenics and Beyond, ed. Marius Turda (Gottingen: V&R Unipress, 2013), 129. 13 McMahon, The Races of Europe, 67. 14 Marco Meriggi, “Liberali/liberalismo,” in Atlante culturale del Risorgimento. Lessico del linguaggio politico dal Settecento all’Unità, eds. Alberto M. Banti, Antonio Chiavistelli et al. (Rome: Laterza, 2011), 108. 15 Sebastiano Timpanaro, Sulla linguistica dell’Ottocento (Bologna: Il Mulino, 2005), 109–111. See, also, Fabrizio De Donno, Italian Orientalism: Nationhood, Cosmopolitanism, and the Cultural Politics of Identity (Oxford: Peter Lang, 2019), 39–45. 16 McMahon, The Races of Europe, 42–48. McMahon points out the ‘surge’ in anthropological publications in 1860s; see ibid., 49. Giuliano Pancaldi, however, argued that Italy in the 1860s and 1870s underwent a dramatic decrease in scientific publications: see Giuliano Pancaldi, Darwin in Italia: impresa scientifica e frontiere culturali (Bologna: Il Mulino, 1983), 9. It must be said, however, that while McMahon refers to a specific sector such as anthropology, Pancaldi points out at the entirety of scientific publications. 17 On the ‘decade of preparation,’ see Giorgio Candeloro, Storia dell’Italia Moderna, vol. 4, Dalla Rivoluzione nazionale all’Unità (Milan: Feltrinelli, 1964), 108–287; Alberto M. Banti, Il Risorgimento Italiano (Rome: Laterza, 2004), 96–108; Flavio Lopez De Oñate, introduction to Pasquale S. Mancini, Saggi sulla nazionalità, ed. Flavio Lopez-De Oñate (Rome: Sestante, 1944), xli. For an in-depth analysis of Cavour’s age, see Rosario Romeo, Dal Piemonte sabaudo all’Italia liberale (Rome: Laterza, 1974) and Romeo, Cavour e il suo tempo, 3 vols. (Rome: Laterza, 2012). 18 See Pasquale S. Mancini, Della nazionalità come fondamento del dritto delle genti. Prelezione al corso di dritto internazionale e marittimo pronunziata nella R. Università di Torino dal Professore Pasquale Stanislao Mancini nel dì 23 gennaio 1851 (Turin: Botta, 1851). 19 Lopez De Oñate, introduction to Pasquale S. Mancini, Saggi sulla nazionalità, xxxviii–xli. For further biographical information, see, also Treccani. Enciclopedia online, “Mancini, Pasquale Stanislao,” last accessed December 7, 2018 http:// www.treccani.it/enciclopedia/pasquale-stanislao-mancini_%28Il-Contributoitaliano-alla-storia-del-Pensiero:-Diritto%29/ and Treccani. Dizionario biografico, “Mancini, Pasquale Stanislao,” last accessed December 7, 2018 http://www.treccani. it/enciclopedia/pasquale-stanislao-mancini_%28Dizionario-Biografico%29/. 20 Mancini, Della nazionalità come fondamento del dritto delle genti, 42 (emphasis added). See Lopez De Oñate, introduction to Pasquale S. Mancini, Saggi sulla nazionalità, xxiii–xxxii. As for the Romagnosian concept of ethnarchy— intended to describe a nation which could enjoy political independence and free institutions to be opposed to the order of Vienna, see Mancini (1851) 43 and Lopez De Oñate, introduction to Pasquale S. Mancini, Saggi sulla nazionalità, xxxiv. On the relationship between the idea of nation and the concept of ‘natural laws’ in Mancini’s thought, see Giuseppe Grieco, “A Legal Theory for the Nation-State. Pasquale Stanislao Mancini, Hegelianism and Piedmontese Liberalism after 1848,” Journal of Modern Italian Studies 24, no. 2 (2019): 266–292.

224  The ‘science of nations’ 21 Fabio Di Giannatale, “Il Principio di nazionalità. Un dibattito nell’Italia risorgimentale,” Storia e politica 6, no. 2 (2014): 252. 22 Lopez De Oñate, introduction to Pasquale S. Mancini, Saggi sulla nazionalità, xxiii. 23 Lopez De Oñate, ibid., xiv–xvi, xviii. 24 Mancini, Della nazionalità come fondamento del dritto delle genti, 47, 61. 25 Mancini, ibid., 47. 26 Mancini, ibid., 29–30, 31. 27 Mancini, ibid., 31, 33–37. 28 Mancini, ibid., 34–37. 29 Mancini, ibid., 33n. 30 Mancini, ibid., 33–37, 55. 31 Mancini, ibid., 35n. 32 Silvana Patriarca, “‘La disciplina della democrazia’: sapere statistico e Risorgimento,” in Il percorso storico della statistica nell’Italia unita. Atti del workshop –Roma, 7 giugno 2011, eds. Dora Morrucco and Aurea Micali (Rome: ISTAT, 2013), 59. See, also, Patriarca, Numbers and Nationhood, 142–149. 33 Patriarca, “‘La disciplina della democrazia’,” 59–60. As for an exhaustive biographical overview of Cesare Correnti and Pietro Maestri, see Treccani. Dizionario Biografico “Correnti, Cesare.” Last accessed December 29, 2018. http:// www.treccani.it/enciclopedia/cesare-correnti_%28Dizionario-Biografico% 29/; Treccani. Dizionario Biografico “Maestri, Pietro.” Last accessed December 29, 2018. http://www.treccani.it/enciclopedia/pietro-maestri_%28DizionarioBiografico%29/. 34 Patriarca, “Patriottismo, nazione e italianità nella statistica del Risorgimento,” 123. 35 Correnti and Maestri, Annuario Statistico Italiano. Anno I, 1857–1858, 22: ‘Nazione è come dire comune nascimento di pensieri: e i pensieri ci nascono nella lingua materna; ond’è che nazione e lingua vanno del pari.’ 36 Correnti and Maestri, ibid., 22. 37 McMahon, The Races of Europe, 25, 106. 38 Correnti and Maestri, Annuario Statistico Italiano. Anno I, 1857–1858, 22–23. 39 Correnti and Maestri, ibid., 165–166. 40 Correnti and Maestri, ibid., 31. 41 James Poskett, “National Types: The Transatlantic Publication and Reception of Crania Americana (1839),” History of Science 53, no. 3 (2015): 264–295. 42 Giovenale Vegezzi-Ruscalla, “Abbozzo etnografico dell’Europa,” in Annuario Statistico Italiano. Anno I, 1857–1858, eds. Cesare Correnti and Pietro Maestri (Turin: Tipografia Letteraria; Milan: Canadelli, 1858), 329. 43 Vegezzi-Ruscalla, “Abbozzo etnografico dell’Europa,” 82. On VegezziRuscalla’s coinage of ‘ethnology,’ see Sandra Puccini, ed. L’uomo e gli uomini. Scritti antropologici italiani dell’Ottocento (Rome: CISU, 1991), 54–55. 44 Franco Bronzat, introduction to Giovenale Vegezzi-Ruscalla, Diritto e necessità di abrogare il francese come lingua ufficiale in alcune valli della provincia di Torino (Turin: Bocca, 1861). Facsimile of the first edition, with an introduction by Franco Bronzat and afterword by Daniele Jalla (Turin: Provincia di Torino, 2011), 15. 45 Bronzat, ibid., 16–22. 46 Bronzat, ibid., 21–22; Domenico Santamaria, “Orientamenti della linguistica Italiana del primo ottocento,” in The History of Linguistics in Italy, eds. Paolo Ramat, Hans-Josef Niederehe, and E.F.K. Koerner (Amsterdam-Philadelphia: John Benjamins Publishing Company, 1986), 198–201, 204, 211; Puccini, L’uomo e gli uomini, 9–10. As for the language as ‘birth certificate of nations,’ Giovenale VegezziRuscalla, Che cosa è Nazione? Ragionamento (Turin: Steffenone, 1854), 15.

The ‘science of nations’  225 47 Vegezzi-Ruscalla, ibid., 19. 48 Vegezzi-Ruscalla, ibid., 23; Giovenale Vegezzi-Ruscalla La nazionalità di Nizza. Ragionamento (Turin: Stamperia dell’Unione Tip-Editrice, 1860), 14–16. 49 Vegezzi-Ruscalla, Che cosa è Nazione?, 24. 50 Vegezzi-Ruscalla, ibid. 51 Vegezzi-Ruscalla, “Della convenienza di un corso di Etnologia,” Rivista Contemporanea 16, no. 7 (1859): 85; Vegezzi-Ruscalla, “Abbozzo etnografico dell’Europa,” 330. 52 Puccini, L’uomo e gli uomini, 55; Vegezzi-Ruscalla Vegezzi-Ruscalla, “Della convenienza di un corso di Etnologia,” 85–86. 53 Vegezzi-Ruscalla, La nazionalità di Nizza, 12–13. See also Vegezzi-Ruscalla, “Della convenienza di un corso di Etnologia,” 86–87. 54 Vegezzi-Ruscalla, “Abbozzo etnografico dell’Europa,” 336–337. See also, Vegezzi-Ruscalla, ibid., 354–357. 55 Vegezzi-Ruscalla, ibid., 332–333, 336, 354, 357. 56 Vegezzi-Ruscalla, ibid., 336. 57 The first definition of razza in Treccani modern Italian vocabulary indicates: ‘a population or a group of populations sharing genetic, morphological, ecological and physiological characters differing from other populations of the same species.’ See Treccani. Vocabolario online, “razza.” Last accessed December 12, 2018. http://www.treccani.it/vocabolario/razza/. As for the Treccani encyclopedia, it defines ‘race’ as a ‘group of people sharing common hereditary physical traits’ such as hair, skin, and so on. It points out, however, that although still enjoying widespread use, the term razza is devoid of any scientific validity. See in Treccani. Enciclopedia online, “razza.” Last accessed December 12, 2018. http:// www.treccani.it/enciclopedia/razza/. For the historical usage of the word razza in the Italian language, see Salvatore Battaglia and Giovanni Ronco, Grande dizionario della lingua italiana, vol. 15 (Turin: UTET, 2004), 586–588. 58 I borrow the expression ‘epidermalization’ of race from William Max Nelson’s essay on eighteenth-century racial thought; see William M. Nelson, “Making Men: Enlightenment Ideas of Racial Engineering,” The American Historical Review 115, no. 5 (December 2010): 1388. 59 Vegezzi-Ruscalla, “Abbozzo etnografico dell’Europa,” 332–333; VegezziRuscalla, “Della convenienza di un corso di Etnologia,” 84–86. See, Arvidsson, Aryan Idols, 21. 60 Vegezzi-Ruscalla, “Della convenienza di un corso di Etnologia,” 84. 61 Vegezzi-Ruscalla, “Abbozzo etnografico dell’Europa,” 334, 337, 338; see Vegezzi-Ruscalla, “Della convenienza di un corso di Etnologia,” 84; VegezziRuscalla La nazionalità di Nizza, 10–11. 62 Vegezzi-Ruscalla, “Abbozzo etnografico dell’Europa,” 335. 63 On the Aryans’ ‘superiority,’ see Vegezzi-Ruscalla, “Abbozzo etnografico dell’Europa,” 335; Vegezzi-Ruscalla, “Della convenienza di un corso di Etnologia,” 84–86. Vegezzi-Ruscalla argued that the custom of ‘colored’ and ‘savage’ women to engage in interracial unions with the white male settlers and, conversely, the white women’s ‘abhorrence’ of ‘colored’ men was the evidence of the natural tendency of human beings toward ‘racial improvement.’ See VegezziRuscalla, ibid., 86–87. 64 Vegezzi-Ruscalla, La nazionalità di Nizza, 11–12. See, also, Bronzat, introduction to Giovenale Vegezzi-Ruscalla, Diritto e necessità di abrogare il francese come lingua ufficiale in alcune valli della provincia di Torino, 24. 65 Giustiniano Nicolucci, Delle razze umane. Saggio etnologico (Naples: Fibreno, 1857–1858), 2: 317n. 66 Alberto Baldi, “Giustiniano Nicolucci: cenni biografici,” in Alle origini dell’antropologia italiana, 9–11; Quine, “Making Italians,” 128. On Nicolucci’s

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68 69 70

71 72 73 74 75 76 77 78 79 80

81 82

works in prehistory, see Nicolucci, Delle razze umane, 1: 18; Fedele, “Giustiniano Nicolucci e la fondazione dell’antropologia in Italia,” 49–50; Antonella Romani “Giustiniano Nicolucci antropólogo y prehistoriador de la Italia postunitaria. Los ibero-ligures y otros pueblos de Italia antigua,” Boletin del Museo Arqueológico Nacional 36 (2017): 117. On Nicolucci’s racism, see Quine, “Making Italians,” 128, while on his substantial anti-racism, but strong ethnocentrism, cf. Romani “Giustiniano Nicolucci antropólogo y prehistoriador,” 133–134. The position of Nicolucci toward the alleged inequality of human races was, however, extremely ambivalent, and therefore difficult to summarize. On the one hand, he believed in the aesthetic and intellectual superiority of the Aryans; on the other, he condemned proslavery propaganda aiming at certifying a ‘natural’ inferiority of the blacks. In particular, he refuted the idea of a difference between the encephalic and nervous systems of the ‘Aryans’ and the ‘negroes’; see Nicolucci, Delle razze umane, 1: 21–22, 317. Concerning Nicolucci’s overall opinion over the different human races and their civilizational progress, see Maria S. Quine, “The Destiny of Races ‘Not Yet Called to Civilization,”: Giustiniano Nicolucci’s Critique of American Polygenism and Defense of Liberal Racism,” in National Races: Transnational Power Struggles in the Sciences and Politics of Human Diversity, 1840–1945, ed. Richard McMahon (Lincoln: Nebraska University Press, 2019), 69–104. Quine, “Making Italians,” 130–131; Antonino De Francesco, The Antiquity of the Italian Nation: The Cultural Origins of the Political Myth in Modern Italy, 1796–1943 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013), 137–138. Baldi, “Giustiniano Nicolucci: cenni biografici,” 35; Quine, “Making Italians,” 128. Nicolucci, Delle razze umane, 1: viii; Fedele, “Giustiniano Nicolucci e la fondazione dell’antropologia in Italia,” 43–44; Marius Turda and Maria S. Quine, eds., Historicizing Race (London-New York: Bloomsbury Academic, 2018), 104–105. Nicolucci, Delle razze umane, 1: 12. Nicolucci, ibid., 1: v, 10. Nicolucci, ibid., v, 10; Romani “Giustiniano Nicolucci antropólogo y prehistoriador,” 119. Nicolucci, Delle razze umane, 1: v–vi; Fedele, “Giustiniano Nicolucci e la fondazione dell’antropologia in Italia,” 44–45; Quine, “Making Italians,” 129. Alberto Baldi, “Giustiniano Nicolucci and the evolutionary thinking,” in Alle origini dell’antropologia italiana, 225. Nicolucci, Delle razze umane, 1: 41n. Nicolucci, ibid., 1; Quine, “Making Italians,” 129. See, also Romani “Giustiniano Nicolucci antropologo y prehistoriador,” 119–120, 125, 133–134. Nicolucci, Delle razze umane, 1: 46–47, 50–52, 56; Romani, “Giustiniano Nicolucci antropólogo y prehistoriador,” 121. Nicolucci, Delle razze umane, 1: 57, 111 and ff. The novelty represented by Nicolucci’s ‘importation’ of Aryanism into Italy has been perceptively noted by Maria Sophia Quine, who in her recent essay demonstrated the groundlessness of the thesis about alleged backwardness or resistance of Risorgimento culture to Aryanism. See Quine, “Making Italians,” 133–134. On Italy’s alleged ‘immunity’ to Aryanism because of Roman Catholicism, and classicist Romanism, see Leon Poliakov, The Aryan Myth: A History of Racist and Nationalist Ideas in Europe (New York: Basic Books, 1974), 68. Romani “Giustiniano Nicolucci antropólogo y prehistoriador,” 122–123. Nicolucci, Delle razze umane, 1: 56n, 59, 60n, 142–143. According to the linguist Stefano Gensini, Nicolucci was introduced to the most essential notion

The ‘science of nations’  227

83 84 85

86

87

88 89 90 91 92

93 94 95 96 97

of the Indo-Europeanism by the work of Frédéric Eichhoff, and, in particular, his Parallèles des Langues de l’Europe et de l’Inde (Paris: Imprimerie Royale, 1836) which was extensively studied and commented also by Vincenzo Gioberti. See Stefano Gensini, “Lingua, nazione e razza nei dibattiti italiani della prima metà dell’Ottocento,” Studi filosofici 34 (2011): 235–236. As for Gioberti’s reading of Eichhoff, see Chapter 5 of this book, 191. Nicolucci, Delle razze umane, 1: 111. Nicolucci, ibid., 1: 50, 317. See, also Quine, “Making Italians,” 134–135; Romani “Giustiniano Nicolucci antropólogo y prehistoriador,” 122–123. See Poliakov, The Aryan Myth, 9, 206; Maurice Olender, The Languages of Paradise. Race, Religion, and Philology in the Nineteenth Century (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1992), 53–55, 63, 82, 87. See, also, Manias, Race, Science and the Nation, 187. Nicolucci, Delle razze umane, 1: 50–59. To be fair, Renan also believed that Aryans and Semites derived from the same source, but only at the very beginning of their ethnogenetic process; see Olender, The Languages of Paradise, 53–54. It has been impossible to ascertain if Nicolucci was familiar with the theories of the philologists Friedrich Creuzer (1771–1858) and Johann Arnold Kanne (1773–1824), and the geographer Carl Ritter (1779–1859) about and alleged Indian origins of Judaism. See Poliakov, The Aryan Myth, 193, 196; Arvidsson, Aryan Idols, 38. The reference is, of course, to the establishment in 1882 of the Triple Alliance between the German Empire, Austro-Hungarian Empire, and the Kingdom of Italy. For Nicolucci’s subsequent ‘nordicization’ of the Aryans, see Giustiniano Nicolucci, Antropologia dell’Italia nell’evo antico e nel moderno (Naples: Tipografia dell’Accademia delle Scienze, 1887), 3–4, 8–9. For his turn toward a ‘strict’ Aryanism and his Eurocentric nationalism, see Romani “Giustiniano Nicolucci antropólogo y prehistoriador,” 132–134. On Gioberti’s interest in the Ligures, see Chapter 5 of this book, 159, 163. See, also, Romani “Giustiniano Nicolucci antropólogo y prehistoriador,” 128. See Giustiniano Nicolucci, La stirpe ligure in Italia ne’ tempi antichi e ne’ moderni (Naples: Fibreno, 1864), 2, 25–27, 35, 66; Romani “Giustiniano Nicolucci antropólogo y prehistoriador,” 128. Romani “Giustiniano Nicolucci antropólogo y prehistoriador,” 127. Nicolucci, La stirpe ligure in Italia ne’ tempi antichi e ne’ moderni, 73–74, 85–86. Nicolucci rejected the hypothesis of a Northern African origin of the Ligures—proposed, among others, by Giandomenico Romagnosi and James Cowles Prichard—on purely craniological grounds since, as he argued, Ligurian skulls were brachycephalic, while Northern African ones displayed a high rate of dolichocephaly. See Nicolucci, La stirpe ligure in Italia ne’ tempi antichi e ne’ moderni, 75–78. Nicolucci, ibid., 66, 72, 84–85. Nicolucci, La stirpe ligure in Italia ne’ tempi antichi e ne’ moderni, 84–87; Romani “Giustiniano Nicolucci antropólogo y prehistoriador,” 129. Romani “Giustiniano Nicolucci antropólogo y prehistoriador,” 125, 129. Manias, Race, Science and the Nation, 3–8. Some scholars attribute Nicolucci’s sale of a significant part of his vast osteological collection to American and British institutions to his scorn following Mantegazza’s appointment to the first chair of anthropology at the University of Florence (1869). Nicolucci was awarded a chair of anthropology at the University of Naples only in 1880, thanks to the interest of the incumbent minister of education (and former classmate) Francesco De Sanctis. See Baldi, “Giustiniano Nicolucci: cenni biografici,” 26; Fedele, “Giustiniano Nicolucci e la fondazione dell’antropologia in Italia,” 54; Giovanni Landucci, “Mantegazza

228  The ‘science of nations’

98 99 100 101 102 103 104 105 106

107 108

109 110

111 112

e Nicolucci,” in Alle origini dell’antropologia italiana, 62. See, also, Turda and Quine, Historicizing Race, 104–105. Romani “Giustiniano Nicolucci antropólogo y prehistoriador,” 128–133. Puccini, L’uomo e gli uomini, 30–32. On Massimo D’Azeglio’s coinage of the sentence, see Banti, Il Risorgimento italiano, 221–223. The reference is, in particular, to the pivotal figure of Paolo Mantegazza; see Quine, “Making Italians,” 140–151. Sandra Puccini, “L’antropologia italiana negli anni di Nicolucci: due inchieste sui caratteri fisici e la psicologia etnica dei popoli italiani (1871–1898),” in Alle origini dell’antropologia italiana, 103–106. Alberto Baldi, “Antropologia italiana della seconda metà dell’Ottocento: dagli interessi per la cultura delle popolazioni ‘altre’ alle ricerche in ambito folklorico,” in Alle origini dell’antropologia italiana, 119. Baldi, “Antropologia italiana della seconda metà dell’Ottocento,” 140–141. Landucci, “Mantegazza e Nicolucci,” 74. Landucci, ibid., 77–78. For the ‘savages’ considered as ‘living fossils’ see Puccini, L’uomo e gli uomini, 22. The complete titles of Darwin’s books were, respectively, On the Origins of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life (1859) and The Descent of Man, and Selection in Relation to Sex (1871). See Encyclopedia Britannica, “Darwin, Charles.” Last accessed December 12, 2018. https://www.britannica.com/biography/Charles-Darwin.The first Italian translation of the Origins of Species dated to 1864 and was the result of the efforts of the naturalist Giovanni Canestrini, who surely read the original book between 1860 and 1862. While in the 1859 Origins of Species Darwin made sure not to talk about man’s descent from the ape, in Italy this topic had been already approached by the zoologist Filippo De Filippi in 1865 with his L’uomo e le scimie, and by Canestrini himself his 1866 book L’origine dell’uomo. In other words, Filippi’s and Canestrini’s books predated Darwin’s Descent of Man by six and five years, respectively. See Pancaldi, Darwin in Italia, 173–184. See also, Baldi, “Antropologia italiana della seconda metà dell’Ottocento,” 118–124. See Pancaldi, Darwin in Italia, 175; Baldi, “Antropologia italiana della seconda metà dell’Ottocento,” 119–120. Tommaseo’s vitriolic condemnation of Darwinism was the content of his 1869 pamphlet, L’uomo e la scimmia. See Baldi, “Antropologia italiana della seconda metà dell’Ottocento,” 119–124; Baldi, “Giustiniano Nicolucci and the evolutionary thinking,” 223. Baldi, “Giustiniano Nicolucci and Evolutionary Thinking,” 224–228. See Fedele-Baldi (1988), 225, 312; Romani “Giustiniano Nicolucci antropólogo y prehistoriador,” 124. It is impossible to ascertain whether Nicolucci, like Lamarck and his followers, believed in the hereditary transmission of acquired traits (although it is extremely likely). On the debate surrounding this specific aspect of Lamarckism, see Pancaldi, Darwin in Italia, 190. Jill Morris, Alberto Baldi, and Francesco Fedele “Giustiniano Nicolucci: A Synthesis of the Volume,” in Alle origini dell’antropologia italiana, 310–312. Fedele, “Giustiniano Nicolucci e la fondazione dell’antropologia in Italia,” 46.

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Index

Abbattista, Guido 233 Adelchi, prince of the Lombards 83, 109, 111–114, 116, 231 Adelung, Friedrich 100, 107 Adelung, Johann C. 100, 107 Adrian I (pope) 89–90 Aeneas 43 African: origins of Italic cultures 123–124, 130, 144, 217, 227; race 140 Africans 10, 139, 175 Agassiz, Louis 135, 148–149 Albarani, Giuliano 40–42, 45, 189, 193, 233 Albertoni, Ettore A. 120, 143–144, 146, 233 Alexander I (czar) 78 Alighieri, Dante 74, 177 allophyilian populations 163 Altai, Mountains: as the ethnogenetic epicenter of the Europeans 99, 191; as the postdiluvian cradle of the Asians 164 Amerindians 166, 192 anatomy 9, 18, 124, 145, 200, 212 Ancient Italic Wisdom see Antiqua Sapientia Italica Anderson, Benedict 233 Andreoni, Annalisa 28, 31–32, 41, 43–45, 230, 233 Anglo-Saxon(s) 84, 120; -Norman conflict 83–84; race 139; witenagemot 85 Anglo-Saxonism 137, 237 anthropography 47, 65, 67, 72 anthropometry 1, 6, 14, 65, 67–68, 100, 105, 125, 135–136, 152, 201 anti-autochthonism 118, 119, 123, 128, 170–172, 174, 193 anti-Catholicism 111

anti-Celticism 129 anti-Classicism 159 anti-clericalism 4, 82, 99, 156, 170, 179, 186, 202; in anthropology 108, 202 Antiqua Sapientia Italica 20, 25, 27, 57, 104, 107, 151, 158–159, 169–170 anti-racism 15, 139–140, 226 anti-Roman 51, 52, 59, 87, 104, 132–133, 145, 159, 172 anti-Romanism see anti-Roman anti-slavery 15, 18, 148, 191, 226, 242 Antoine, Michel 234 aquiline nose 1, 62 Arabic: language as Semitic 70, 185; stock 144 Arabs: as Aryans 17; conquering the Mediterranean basin 111; as Semites 165; as whites 176 Ariosto, Ludovico 181 Armitage, David 149 Artifoni, Enrico 15, 89–91, 98, 101, 105–106, 109, 111–112, 114–116, 194, 233 Aru, Silvia 80, 196, 234 Arvidsson, Stefan 79, 149–150, 191, 222–223, 225, 227, 233 Aryan(s) 17, 210, 213, 216–217, 225–227; invasion of Europe 213; invasion of Italy 210, 216, 217; populations 131, 209, 210, 213, 225–226; race 131, 142, 165, 200, 209, 210–211, 213, 217, 225–226; -Semitic affinity 165, 216, 227; -Semitic divide 79, 165, 210, 216, 227 Aryanism 6, 13, 17, 115, 131, 142, 149, 165, 198, 200, 210–211, 213, 223, 226–227, 240; Nordicist 216, 227 Ascenzi, Anna 110, 235 Ascoli, Albert R. 233

244 Index Ascoli, Graziadio I. 69, 132, 146, 208 atavism 6, 9, 17–18, 177, 195, 206, 217 Athenians 34 Atlas, Mountains: as the postdiluvian cradle of the Blacks 164 Augstein, Hannah F. 77, 114, 116, 149, 191, 197, 233 Ausones 102 autochthonism 124, 170–171 autochthony: of the Etruscans 56–57, 117; of Etruscan civilization/culture 26–27, 33, 50, 53–54, 56–57, 73, 117, 119, 123; of Italian ethnicity 82–83, 107, 151, 159; of Italic civilization/ culture 25, 27, 48–49, 54, 60, 117, 119, 159; of the Italics 39, 55, 59–60, 117 Azeris 131 Badini-Confalonieri, Luca 114, 231 Balbi, Adriano 12, 47, 65–73, 77–80, 100, 107, 114, 117, 121, 143–144, 147, 163, 186, 190, 229–230, 240 Balbi, Eugenio 67, 78, 230 Balbo, Cesare 13, 54, 73, 81, 90–91, 99–100, 109–110, 112–114, 116, 121, 151–152, 166–180, 182, 185–188, 192–195, 197, 199, 230, 232, 235–236, 239, 242 Baldi, Alberto 150, 223, 225–228, 236 Balibar, Étienne 7, 17–18, 113, 233 Balsamo-Crivelli, Gustavo 233 Bancel, Nicolas 114, 241 Banti, Alberto M. 3–5, 7–8, 14–16, 25, 40–41, 45, 80, 84–85, 109, 113, 188, 196, 222–223, 228, 233–234, 238–239 Banton, Michael 77–78, 148, 191, 234 Barsotti, Edoardo M. 18, 234 Battaglia, Salvatore 18, 225, 234 Beales, Derek 234 Bely, Lucien 234 Beccaria, Cesare 120 Bechereucci, Isabella 110–111, 231 Bender, Thomas 149 Benso, Camillo see Cavour, Camillo Berbers 124 Berengo, Mario 234 Berger, Stefan 15, 146, 242 Bertelli, Carlo 112, 233 bestioni 130 Bethencourt, Francisco 17, 44, 77, 109, 145, 148, 191–192, 195, 234 Biagini, Eugenio F. 148, 234 Bible 2, 77, 108, 114, 116, 149, 158–159, 161–164, 174, 191, 193, 197, 211, 221, 233

biblical: book of Genesis 151–152, 161, 165, 174, 212, 221; Creationism 13, 151, 159, 161–162, 164, 170, 174, 193, 221; Great Deluge 31, 78, 161–162, 164, 174, 185, 190; Noachian genealogies 130, 152, 151, 154, 156, 158, 161, 165, 170–171, 174–175, 185, 195; Phalegic dispersion 162, 165, 174; Tower of Babel 158, 162, 165, 174 biblicism 159, 164–165, 170 Biondelli, Bernardino 66, 130, 145, 147, 190, 208 Biondo, Flavio 133 Biscardi, Luigi 230 Bizzocchi, Roberto 15, 41, 80, 109, 111, 196, 222, 233–234, 239 Blacks 16, 135, 164, 226 Blanckaert, Claude 234 Boria, Edoardo 79–80, 196, 234 botany 68, 79 Blumenbach, Johann F. 34, 68, 135, 164, 204, 212–213 Bobbio, Norberto 234 Bollati, Giulio 27, 38, 234 Bonaparte, Napoleone 23, 26, 37, 40, 42, 45, 51, 235, 241 Bonazzi, Tiziano 149 Bopp, Franz 32, 55, 69, 76, 210, 213 Bory De Saint Vincent, Jean-Baptiste 204 Bottazzini, Umberto 78, 188, 239 Boulainvilliers, Henri de 84, 87, 109 brachycephaly see cranium Brancato, Francesco 41, 45, 234 Bricquel, Dominique 42, 234 Brogiolo, Gian P. 112, 233 Bron, Grégoire 188, 195, 234 Bronzat, Franco 224–225, 232 Buffon, Comte de (George-Louis Leclerc) 145, 204, 236 Burgio, Alberto 15, 17, 234, 240 Butler, Leslie 149 Cagnazzi, Luca S. 43 Camper, Petrus 34, 135, 145, 212 Canaanites 50 Candeloro, Giorgio 153, 156, 188–189, 192, 223, 234 Canestrini, Giovanni 221, 228 Cantambrians 50 Canziani, Giuseppe 149, 230 Capei, Pietro 93, 101, 110, 112–113, 115–116

Index  245 Capponi, Gino 12, 81–82, 88, 90–94, 96, 98, 101–106, 110–113, 115–116, 121, 151, 193, 230, 241 Carthaginians 37 Carwardine, Richard 148 Casalena, Maria Pia 78, 188, 234 Casali, Luciano 234 Casana-Testore, Paola 195, 235 Casini, Paolo 38, 41–42, 45, 74–75, 189–190, 193–194, 235 Cassata, Francesco 198, 235 Castelnuovo-Frigessi, Delia see Frigessi, Delia catastrophism 31, 34, 78, 164 Cattaneo, Carlo 5, 13, 15, 53, 55, 66, 69, 72, 73, 76, 78, 80, 97, 106, 108, 113–114, 117–121, 124, 127–140, 142–149, 151, 165, 199, 208, 219, 230, 232, 234, 236–237, 240 Caucasian race 1, 63, 65, 67–69, 77, 117, 135–136, 138, 142, 149, 158, 161, 163–166, 200, 213, 216 Caucasus, Mountains 1, 32, 46, 62–63, 77, 114, 116–117, 149, 164, 175, 183–185, 191, 197, 233; as the original/ postdiluvian cradle of Whites 77, 149, 164–165, 175, 179, 183–185, 197; race of the 1, 46, 62–64, 117, 184–185 cavemen 222 Cavour, Camillo 202, 207, 223 Celtic: druids 26; ethnic substratum in Italy 103, 159, 162; invasions of Italy 50, 59, 133; race 61, 137, 184, 206; racial substratum of British Isles 137 Celticism 59, 129 Celtomania 26, 42 Celto-Scythians 50 Celts 50, 57, 59, 76, 110, 133, 139, 160, 165, 171–172, 184, 186, 216; as racially Aryans 217 Cesarotti, Melchiorre 45 Chabod, Federico 3–4, 15, 235 Charlemagne (emperor) 89–90, 112 Chateaubriand, François-Auguste R. de 84, 87 Chiaramonte, Umberto. 40, 43, 188, 192, 196, 235 Chiavistelli, Antonio 14, 188, 223, 238 chimpanzee 140–141 Cirese, Alberto M. 235 Classicism 86–88, 110, 116, 118–119, 121, 129–130, 133, 159, 164, 226 Classics 2–3, 20–21, 27–28, 42, 170, 218, 220–221 Clavijero, Francisco J. 192

Cleobulus 25–26, 36–37 Clemente, Pietro 235 Coen, Achille 56, 75–76, 235 Colajanni, Napoleone 15 Colombini, Arrigo 74–76, 235 community of descent 4, 8, 12, 35 Confino, Alon 196 Conte, Domenico 43–45, 74, 230 Correnti, Cesare 120, 199, 201, 203, 205–206, 222, 224, 230, 232 Corsi, Pietro 235 Cowles Prichard, James 116, 152, 163, 177, 190–191, 195, 204, 212–231, 227, 230 craniology 3, 13–14, 21, 100, 119, 124–125, 135–138, 141–142, 152, 163–164, 177, 195, 209, 211–231, 216–219, 227, 231, 236 cranium 1, 35, 38, 62–63, 107, 135, 136–139, 148–149, 152, 163, 185, 192, 195, 212, 214, 217, 220, 224, 231, 240; brachycephalic 211–212, 216–217, 227; dolichocephalic 212, 216–217, 227; volume of the 135, 139, 163 Cretans 34 Creuzer, Friedrich 227 Croce, Benedetto 75, 82, 90, 108–109, 111–112, 114, 195, 235 Cuoco, Vincenzo 12, 20–46, 48–49, 51, 53–54, 60, 68, 73–75, 104, 118, 130–151, 171, 187, 219, 230–231, 233, 235–236, 241 Cuvier, Georges 34, 68, 116, 152, 164–165, 177, 190–191, 195, 204, 212 D’Addio, Mario 193, 195 Dainotto, Roberto M. 235 Dante see Alighieri, Dante Dardano, Maurizio 110, 116, 235 Darwin, Charles 220–221, 223, 228, 231, 239 Darwinism 11, 14, 237; In Italy 14, 220–221, 223, 228 David, Thomas 114, 241 Davis, John A. 235 D’Azeglio, Massimo 153, 188, 220, 228, 235 DeBenedictis, Angela 45, 77, 238–239 De Donno, Fabrizio 110, 147, 223, 235 De Filippi, Filippo 221, 228 De Francesco, Antonino 5, 7–8, 16, 18, 38, 40–45, 48, 52–53, 74–76, 123, 144, 189, 193, 198, 226, 230, 235 degeneration 18, 175–177, 195, 236, 239 De Giorgi, Alessandro 144–145, 232

246 Index De Luca, Stefano 188–189, 192, 196, 235 De Napoli, Olindo 236 De Rosa, Gabriele 192, 236 De Sanctis, Francesco 227 Delfico, Melchiorre 43–44, 51 Della Peruta, Franco 4, 14–15, 114, 145–147, 236–237 Denina, Carlo 26, 35, 91, 93, 95–96, 104, 112 Deplano, Valeria 80, 196, 234 Desiderius (king) 83, 89 Desmoulins, Antoine 204 determinism 5–6, 60, 62, 139, 162, 183 Di Attellis, Francesco 43 Di Ciommo, Enrica 236 Di Giannatale, Fabio 15, 224, 236 Dionysius of Halicarnassus 56, 76 dolichocephaly see cranium Donovan, Mark 15, 146, 242 Doron, Claude-Olivier 18, 195, 236 Doyle, Don H. 149 Du Cange, Charles 132 Dupuis, Charles F. 28 Durando, Giacomo 13, 104, 152–154, 178–188, 195–198, 229, 231, 234–235 Edwards, William F. 100, 107, 114, 204 Eichhoff, Frédéric G. 190–191, 213, 227 Eliav-Feldon, Miriam 14, 44, 236 epidermalization 2, 151, 199, 210, 225 Ernst, Waltraud 77, 114, 149, 191, 233 Ethiopians 50 ethnarchy 223 ethnocentrism 16–17, 50, 166, 226 ethnological: heuristic method 13, 205, 213 ethnology 3, 10–11, 38, 91, 96, 98, 101–102, 104, 106, 116, 130–131, 142, 148, 151, 163, 174, 188, 192, 199–200, 202, 207, 209, 211–213, 218, 220, 222, 234; coinage of the term in Italian 102, 115, 224 Etruscan: civilization as the link between Classical antiquity and ancient Egypt 27, 57; cranium 195, 214–215, 231; empire 172; language 42, 56, 76–78, 132; -Oscan family 50; -Pelasgian empire and ethnicity 12, 36–37, 43, 189, 219; -Pelasgian genius 156; -Pelasgian war 172; type 1, 46, 62, 73–74, 151, 206 Etruscans 27, 28, 45–50, 172, 184, 219; as the ancestors of modern Italians 1, 26, 33, 36–37, 46, 53, 62, 65–66, 74, 82; as the ancestors of

the Greeks 28; as the ancestors of the Italics 28, 37, 53, 118; as Aryans 215; as belonging to the European race 124–125; as descendants of the Phoenicians 30; as the founders of modern Italian civilization and municipalism 53, 59, 73, 87, 118, 132–133, 148; as originating from Lydia 56; as originating from Rhaetia 56, 76, 171; as Pelasgians 33, 36, 45, 170; or Pelasgians 28, 33, 45, 189; as the progenitors of modern Tuscans 1, 46, 60, 62–63, 177; or Raseni 171, 174, 189; or Tyrrhenians 28 Etruscology 20, 25, 27, 42, 49, 57, 104, 130, 178, 194, 239 Etruscomania 49, 73, 75, 118, 174 eugenics 6, 152, 186, 198, 220, 242 Eurocentrism 7, 173, 227 Evans, Robert J.W. 111, 194, 238 Evolutionism: in Darwin (see Darwinism); in Lamarck (see Lamarckism) Fabrizi, Angelo 111, 236 facial angle 1, 62, 124–125, 145, 176, 212 Fantoni, Giovanni 51 Farber, Paul L. 236 Fedele, Francesco 150, 223, 226–228, 236 Fee, Elizabeth 236 Ferdinand II (king) 212 Ferrari, Giuseppe 120, 232 Ferretti, Federico 18, 78, 236 Ferrone, Vincenzo 236 Fichte, Johann G. 84 fictive ethnicity 7, 113 Filangieri, Gaetano 120 Finelli, Pietro 236 fixism 164, 175, 195, 220–222 Fonzi, Fausto 193, 195 Fosi, Irene 45, 77, 238–239 Foucault, Michel 236 Frank, Giuseppe 149, 230 Frankish: conquest of Italy 89, 95–96, 99, 102, 113; ethnonym’s etymology 96–97; legislation 114; -Roman-Gaul relations 83–85, 97, 109, 160 Franks 83, 89; as allies of the Roman empire 97; as a confederation of diverse Germanic tribes 97, 115; as the progenitors of French aristocracy 84 Fredrickson, George M. 77, 236 Frigessi, Delia 113–114, 127–129, 145–146, 148–149, 230, 236

Index  247 Fruci, Gian L. 236 Fubini-Leuzzi, Maria 193–195, 236 Gaillard, Gérald 114 Galante Garrone, Alessandro 237 Galiani, Ferdinando 18 Galimi, Valeria 236 Galli, Carlo 149 Gallic see Celtic Gallo-Roman see Romano-Gaul Galton, Francis 198 Galvani, G. 104, 116 Gambarota, Paola 237 Garbiglietti, Antonio 195, 214, 231 Garibaldi, Giuseppe 148, 211 Gauls see Celts Geary, Patrick 97, 109, 113, 116, 237 Gellner, Ernest 237 genius 95, 104, 135, 140, 156, 177, 181, 237 Gensini, Stefano 15, 226–227, 237 Gentile, Giovanni 38 Gentiles 158 Gentilesimo 166 geography of man see anthropography Georgians 131 Gepids 101 Germanic(s) 13, 82, 97–99, 103, 100, 139, 165, 172, 185; eastern origins of the 102–104; in German nationalist culture 87–88, 107, 134, 172, 194; invasions 12, 81–82, 86–88, 97–98, 111, 118; language 70, 148; language as directly inherited from Indians 130; -Latin divide 81–82, 91, 99, 102–105, 121; laws 91–92; negative portrayals of the 129, 160; as the quintessential Aryans 216; race 81–82, 87–88, 91, 98, 102–106, 115, 159, 206; serfdom 94, 113; their role in the ethnogenesis of modern Europeans and Italians 81, 86–88, 126, 133–134, 148, 159, 172, 186 Germanism 82, 86, 129 Ghiringhelli, Robertino 143–144, 237 Ghisleri, Arcangelo 15 Gibbons, David 39, 230 Ginsborg, Paul 234 Gioberti, Vincenzo 13, 38, 53, 90, 104, 109, 116, 130, 151–152, 154–175, 177–180, 182, 185, 187–193, 195–197, 203, 212, 216, 218, 227, 229, 231, 233, 235, 239, 241 Giuliani, Gaia 16–17, 237 Gliddon, George R. 148–149

Gliozzi, Mario 77, 237 Gobineau, Arthur de 109, 210, 213 Gordon, Peter 19 Goths 99, 101, 190; de-Germanization of the 114 Goussot, Alain 15 Govoni, Paola 237 Græcia Mendax 50, 74 Gramsci, Antonio 42 Grant, Susan M. 149 Greco-Latin languages 70 Greco-Roman: race 87, 172; slavery 94 Greek(s) 25–29, 33–37, 48, 50–51, 61, 70, 76, 213; civilization 10, 20, 25, 28, 54, 104, 159, 168; colonization of Italy 36, 50, 53, 57; Italiotes 50, 57–59; race 103; Roman imperial troops in the Lombard army 101; and their influence on Italian ethnicities 36, 57–59, 132; type 177 Gregorius XVI (pope) 153 Grieco, Giuseppe 223, 237 Grimm, Jacob 100 Grimm, Wilhelm 100 Guarnacci, Mario 27–28, 42, 57, 231 Guerci, Luciano 237 Haddock, Bruce 39–41, 230 Ham 162, 176 Hamites 162, 174; the formation of their physical features 175–177; of Nimrud 163 Hanlon, Gregory 196 Hannaford, Ivan 237 Harris, Bernard 77, 114, 149, 191, 233 Hebrew language 165 Hebrews: as linguistically Semites 70; as racially Semites 165 Hegelianism 120, 223, 237 Hellenic see Greek Hellenization 50 Herodotus 56 Himalaya, Mountains: as the ethnogenetic epicenter of the Whites 191 Hobsbawm, Eric J. 237 Holy Scriptures see Bible Homo Sapiens 63, 138, 221 Horsman, Reginald 237 Hudson, Nicholas 145, 150, 237 Hyksos 57 Iberians 159, 171, 174 Ibero-Ligures 45, 171, 174, 216, 217, 226, 241

248 Index Ichijo, Atsuko 237 Illyrian race 61 Imbruglia, Girolamo 238 incivilimento 57, 72, 80, 93, 121–124, 126, 128, 132, 143–145, 159, 189–190, 203–204, 231–233 Indian(s) 17, 71, 130–131; mythology 161; origins of European languages 165, 170, 193; origins of Judaism 227; Vedas 114 Indo-European(s): as Caucasians/Whites 131, 142; as Japhetites 185, 204; languages 21, 69–70, 88, 124, 129–130, 144, 209–210; migration theory 32, 55, 59, 91, 104, 107, 114, 130, 165, 170, 175; race 17, 131, 204, 210, 213; -Semitic affinity 164, 216; -Semitic divide 79; studies 32, 57, 60, 70, 76, 88, 110, 116, 129–130, 147, 152, 191, 195, 202, 227, 233 Indo-Germanic: linguistic kinship 70; populations Caucasian/Whites 191, 213; race 152, 158, 175; studies 130, 147 Indology 161, 170, 202 Indo-Pelasgian: race 158, 163; Sabaeans 163 Indo-Persian: civilization 130; languages 131–132 Inghirami, Francesco 75 Invernici, Franco 143–144, 237 Irace, Erminia 41, 234 Iranian see Indo-Pelasgian Irvin Painter, Nell 77, 237 Isaac, Benjamin 14, 44, 236 Isabella, Maurizio 45, 196, 237 Israel: Italians as the new 158, 160, 170, 173 Italic: origins of Egyptian civilization 159; origins of Greek civilization 159; origins of Phoenician civilization 159 Jalla, Daniele 224, 232 Japheth 158, 161–162, 177 Japhetic: migrations 171, 177, 194; races 152, 154, 156, 158, 165, 171, 176–177, 185, 194, 204; -Semitic affinity 165 Japhetites 163, 174–175; of Chaldea 163; Italics as 163; superiority of 166, 176–177 Javonii 171, 174 Jews 70; as Aryans 17; as a separate race 84

Jones, William 32, 44, 55 Joshua 159 Josue see Joshua Kanne, Johann A. 227 Klaproth, Julius H. 100 Koerner, Ernst, F. K. 224, 241 Körner, Axel 237 Kush 176 La Salvia, Sergio 4, 15, 238 Lacaita, Carlo G. 237 Lamarck, Jean-Baptiste 212, 228 Lamarckism 164, 222, 228 Lamartine, Alphonse 182 Lamennais, Felicité-Robert de 153 Lampredi, Giovanni M. 231 Landucci, Giovanni 227–228, 237–238 Lanzi, Luigi A. 75 Latin(s) 89, 91–92, 97–98, 103, 110, 139, 172; civilization 81–82, 86–88, 98, 104, 121; language 32, 42, 50, 70, 92–93, 132–134, 148, 195, 206, 209; race 13, 70, 88, 91, 103, 105, 110, 133–134, 172, 194, 206 Latinization 132 Leopardi, Giacomo 88 Levi 158 Levi, Alessandro 238 Levites: Italians as the modern 158 Libyan(s) 119; influence on Italic civilization 123–124 Ligures: as one of the oldest dwellers of Europe and Italy 159, 171, 174, 186, 216–217; as pre-Indo-European populations 159, 216 Ligurian: ancestry in modern Piedmontese 159, 211, 216–218; crania as brachycephalic 211, 216, 217, 227; dominion over prehistoric Italy 159, 171, 174, 216–218 linguistics: comparative 10, 12–13, 21, 47, 59, 65–66, 69–70, 72–73, 79, 82, 88, 99, 101, 104, 107, 110, 114, 116, 129–130, 140, 142, 144, 147, 158, 161, 165, 199; substratum theory in 69, 116, 131–132, 206, 208 Linnaeus, Carolus 34, 204 Liutprand (king) 95 Lombard: clemency 93, 112; conquest of Italy 86, 92–93, 98, 101, 103, 121, 126; ethnonym 96–97; kingdom 83, 85, 89, 95–97, 101; laws 81, 90, 93–95, 114;

Index  249 linguistic legacy 194; Question 81–82, 89, 91, 96, 98, 100, 103, 104, 106–108, 133–134, 160–172 Lombardi-Diop, Cristina 16–17, 237 Lombards 81, 83–87, 89–96, 98–105, 111–115, 126, 145, 160, 172, 186, 194; alleged assimilation of the 12, 81, 91, 93, 95, 99, 101, 105, 107, 118, 126, 133–134, 172–173, 186, 194; diverse ethnic background of the 100, 134, 148; or Winnili 115 Lombroso, Cesare 16–17, 236 Lopez De Oñate, Flavio 223–224, 231 Lovejoy, Arthur O. 238 Lydians 50, 56 Lyell, Charles 221 Machiavelli, Niccolò 91, 93, 170, 193 MacMahon, Darrin 19 MacMaster, Neil 17–18, 238 Maestri, Pietro 199, 201, 203, 205–206, 222, 224, 230, 232 Maffei, Scipione 112, 132, 147 Malte-Brun, Conrad 67–68, 77–78, 100 Mancini, Pasquale S. 199, 201, 203–204, 207, 223–224, 231, 237 Mandarini, Enrico 110, 232 Manetta, Filippo 231 Manfredi, Mario 110 Mangio, Carlo 75, 238 Manias, Chris 191, 222, 227, 238 Mannori, Luca 45, 77, 238–239 Mantegazza, Paolo 6, 220–221, 227–228, 231, 235 Mantovani, Dario 96, 99, 109, 111–114, 231 Manzoni, Alessandro 12, 81–87, 90–99, 101–102, 104–107, 109–114, 116, 121, 151, 194, 231, 235–236, 240–241 Marchal, Guy P. 111, 194, 238 Maréchal, Sylvain 25–26, 28 Marmocchi, Francesco 66 Martirano, Maurizio 43–45, 74, 230 Mayer, Charles S. 149 Mazzini, Giuseppe 3–4, 15, 43, 53–54, 75, 147–148, 156, 193, 196, 203, 212, 231 Mazzoldi, Angelo 38, 159, 171, 189–190, 231 McMahon, Richard 14, 18–19, 77, 106, 110, 115–116, 145, 149, 191, 195, 197, 222–224, 226, 238, 240 Melosi, Laura 110, 235

Mennini, Bianca M. 79–80, 196, 234 Menozzi, Daniele 188, 242 Meriggi, Marco 14, 188, 223, 238 Metastasio (Trapassi Pietro A.D.) 181 Micali, Aurea 224, 239 Micali, Giuseppe 1, 12, 14, 38, 46–64, 66–67, 73–78, 100, 104, 106–108, 117–119, 123–126, 130, 132–133, 143–145, 151, 171, 174, 178, 193–194, 199, 219, 231, 235 Minervini, Ciro S. 31 Minuti, Rolando 233 Modiano, Guido 238 Moe, Nelson 5, 16, 238 Mongolian race 135, 138 monogenism 55, 68, 78–79, 108, 135–136, 161, 163–166, 170, 174, 176–177, 212 Montaldo, Silvano 238 Montanelli, Giuseppe 120 Montesquieu, Baron de (Charles-Louis de Secondat) 35, 48 Montlosier, François de 84, 109 Moravia, Sergio 238 Moretti, Mauro 88, 111, 194, 238 Morpurgo Davis, Anna 238 Morris, Jill 228 Morrucco, Dora 224, 239 Morton, Samuel G. 135–139, 148–149, 163, 190, 192 Moses 177 Mosse, George 41, 44, 77, 109, 238–239 Moyn, Samuel 19, 238 Müller, Friedrich M. 210, 213 Murat, Joachim 90, 211 Muratori, Ludovico A. 91, 93–96, 112, 174 Musi, Aurelio 45, 239 Mustè, Marcello 157, 160, 189–190, 239 Nagler, Jörg 149 Napoleon I (emperor) see Bonaparte, Napoleone Native Americans 131, 135, 192, 213 natural history 21, 28, 31, 34, 39, 65, 72; of man 1–2, 12–14, 33–34, 46–47, 55, 65, 67–68, 72, 77, 82, 107–108, 116–118, 120, 125–126, 135, 138, 158, 162–165, 187, 199, 201–202, 204, 206 negro race 18, 68, 124–125, 131, 138, 140–141, 163, 176, 226, 231 Nelson, William M. 14, 18, 225, 239 Niceforo, Alfredo 16–17

250 Index Nicolucci, Giustiniano 13, 17, 38, 45, 105, 142, 150, 199–201, 203, 210–223, 225–228, 231–232, 236, 240–241 Niebuhr, Barthold G. 51, 56, 75–76, 171, 193 Niederehe, Hans-Josef 224, 241 Noah 158, 161–162, 164 Norman(s) 84, 171; -Anglo-Saxon conflict 83; conquest of England 83–85, 113, 146–148; race 84; Yoke 84 Nott, Josiah C. 135, 148–149 Olender, Maurice 79, 227, 239 Orientalism 6, 16, 110, 147, 223, 235 Orientalists 99, 124, 147, 159, 161, 163, 170, 190–191, 199, 202 Oscan(s) 54; language 132; race 61 Ostrogoths 121, 134 Pagden, Anthony 14, 44 Pagliai, Letizia 110–111, 193, 239 Pallottino, Massimo 74, 239 Pancaldi, Giuliano 78, 188, 223, 228, 239 pantheism 104 Papa, Emilio R. 239 Pasquier, Étienne 132 Passmore, Kevin 15, 146, 242 Patriarca, Silvana 4, 7–8, 15, 17–18, 71–72, 78–80, 116, 188, 190, 196–197, 222, 224, 239 Patterson, Henry S. 148 Paul the Deacon 93, 102, 112, 115, 232 Pavan, Massimiliano 193–195, 239 Pécout, Gilles 79, 196, 239 Pelasgian(s) 36, 42, 50, 102, 119, 165, 184, 222, 234; as the ancestors of the Italics and the Italians 12, 20, 28, 73, 82, 104, 159, 213, 216; as Aryans 211, 213, 216; empire 33; influence on the Etruscan culture 171; primacy myth 20–21, 82, 88, 104, 107, 151–152, 154, 156, 186–187; race 61, 82, 103–104, 152, 154, 158–160, 162, 166, 169–170, 187, 213; racial superiority 38, 166, 169, 187, 192, 211, 216; as Semites 49, 54, 170–171, 175, 177, 194–195; their alleged Hamitic ancestry 177 Pelasgomania 130, 171, 194, 211 Pepe, Gabriele 44 Persian mythology 161 Perta, Giuseppe 110–111 Pestelli, Corrado 110, 145, 242 Peter, Saint (the apostle) 158 Petrarca, Francesco 181 Petronius, Gaius Arbiter 23, 36

Phaleg 171 phenotype 1, 8, 14, 33–34, 61, 65, 67–68, 105, 125–126, 135–136, 176, 185, 197, 200–201, 206, 209, 213 phenotypical see phenotype phenotypization 46, 64 Phoenician: colonization of Italy 29, 50; influence on Italic civilization 33 phrenology 16, 119, 135, 137, 142, 206 physical type see type physical variety see variety physiognomics 16, 61, 142, 164 Pick, Daniel 239 Pictet, Adolphe 210, 213 Piguet, Marie-France 114 Pinkerton, John 190 Pirenne, Henri 110, 111 Pisanty, Valentina 240 Pitts, Jennifer 14, 240 Pius IX (pope) 91 Plato 20, 25–28, 32–33, 36–38, 40–45, 48–49, 51, 53, 60, 75, 171, 230, 233, 241 Pocock, John G.A. 18 Poggio, Pier P. 240 Poliakov, Leon 79, 110, 191, 226–227, 240 polygenism 54–55, 68, 78, 108, 131, 135–136, 138, 140, 162–165, 171, 175–177, 191, 226, 240 Porciani, Ilaria 88, 109, 111–112, 116, 194, 238, 240 Porter, Theodor M. 80, 240 Positivism 2, 7, 11, 14, 74, 78, 106, 127–128, 135, 140, 146, 150, 188, 200–202, 218, 220, 239; in anthropology 1, 2, 4, 7, 14, 106, 128, 150, 200, 202, 218, 220 Poskett, James 148–149, 224, 240 pre-Ascolian linguists 208 prehistory 21, 34, 55, 72, 142, 187, 221, 226 pre-Indo-Europeans 163, 216–217 primitiveness 221 Prodi, Paolo 111 providentialism 90, 151, 154, 158, 160, 162, 165, 174, 187 Puccini, Sandra 66, 78, 80, 115, 121, 143–144, 147, 149, 189, 224–225, 228, 240 Pythagoras 26–27, 42 Quigley, Paul 149 Quine, Maria S. 6–8, 16–18, 45, 115, 198, 223, 225–228, 240, 242

Index  251 racialism 1–2, 8–9, 12–14, 18, 34, 73, 107–108, 118–119, 127, 142, 151–152, 165, 177; typological see racialism racialization 5, 8–9, 17, 33, 81–82, 84, 109, 114, 131, 137, 177, 188 racial type see type racism 1, 7–11, 17–18, 44, 77–79, 109–110, 135, 139, 145, 147–148, 166, 191–192, 195, 200, 208, 210, 226, 234, 236, 238–240; anti-Black 16, 135, 139, 176, 226; physiological 1, 14, 34, 44; scientific 1, 74, 106, 118–119, 140, 211 Ramat, Paolo 224, 241 Rametta, Gaetano 240 Ranuzzi, Annibale 18, 78, 236 Rao, Anna M. 40, 240 Raponi, Nicola 193, 195 Rask, Rasmus C. 32, 69, 210 Raspanti, Mauro 240 Remotti, Francesco 240 Renan, Ernest 213, 216, 227 Retzius, Anders 212 Reynaud-Paligot, Carole 114, 240 Riall, Lucy 239, 241 Ricci, Aldo G. 193 Riccobaldi Del Bava, Giuseppe M. 43 Richard I (king) 85 Ritter, Carl 227 Roccucci, Adriano 15, 116, 190, 239 Romagnosi, Giandomenico 13, 66, 73, 78, 80, 87, 93, 100, 106–108, 112, 117–129, 131–134, 140, 142–147, 151, 165, 172, 189–190, 199, 203–204, 223, 227, 232–233, 237–238, 240 Romagnosi, Gian Domenico see Romagnosi, Giandomenico Roman: civilization 25; dominion of Italy 48–50, 59, 133, 172, 194, 197; imperialism 46, 49, 51, 59, 53, 133, 159–160, 173; obliteration of Italic cultural heritages 50, 56 ; rule as the catalyzer of Christianity 160, 172; rule as the catalyzer of Italian ethnogenesis 53, 103, 145, 159–160, 172, 184, 186; slavery 113; tenacity 169 Romance: languages 70, 172; race 185 Romani, Antonella 45, 226–228, 241 Romanism 59, 133, 159, 226 Romanization 49–50, 54, 73, 103, 145, 206 Romano-Gauls 83–84; commoners 83–84, 160; municipalism 83 Romano-Germanic: Christianity 87; relations 81, 103–104, 172–173

Romano-Italic(s) 12, 81, 83–85, 102; as equals to the Lombards 95, 102, 106, 134; guargangi 94; institutions 86, 88–89, 92–94, 98, 118, 126, 132, 134, 172; -Lombard relations 81, 87–99, 101–103, 107, 114, 126, 160, 194; as submitted and segregated from the Lombards 92–96, 102, 107, 112, 114, 160 Romans 25–27, 37, 46, 50, 86, 93, 102, 132–133, 169, 173, 184; modern French as the new 26, 51–52, 60; racial purity of the 133 Romanticism 4, 12–13, 15, 65, 73, 81, 84, 86–87, 96–97, 106, 117–121, 127–129, 131–134, 136, 140, 143, 154–156, 160, 165, 172–173, 182, 195–197, 233 Rome: foundation of 49 ; as the planned city-state of the pope 179 Romeo, Rosario 223 Ronco, Giovanni 18, 225, 234 Rosa, Gabriele 120 Rosmini-Serbati, Antonio 153, 156 Rumi, Giorgio 189, 241 Sabellic: race 69; tribes 54 Sabetti, Filippo 39–41, 230 Saitta, Armando 241 Samnites 23, 26, 37, 50, 58; as belonging to the Arabic race 144 Sangiovanni, Giosuè 212 Sanskrit language 107, 165, 191 Santamaria, Domenico 224, 241 Santarosa, Santorre 192 Sarmatians 101 Sartori, Andrew 239 Sberlati, Francesco 241 Scandinavians 102 Schiera, Pierangelo 111, 232 Schlegel, Friedrich 69, 88, 129–130, 210, 213 Scott, Walter 83–85, 92 Scythia 30, 32 Sebastiani, Silvia 192, 241 Seliger, Martin 241 Semites 79, 163–165, 174, 176, 185, 194–195, 210, 216, 227; of Ashur 163 Semitic: -Aryan affinity (see Aryan-Semitic affinity); -Aryan divide (see Aryan-Semitic divide); ethnogenesis 165; ethnonym 185; languages 69–70, 216; nations 204 Serangeli, Silvio 241 Sergi, Giuseppe 16–17 Sestan, Ernesto 111, 232, 241

252 Index Sexton, Jay 148–149 Shem 162 Sicels 54 Simili, Raffaella 235 Sismondi Jean-Charles-Leonard S. de 90, 92, 110–111, 148, 170, 193, 231, 232, 239 Skinner, Quentin R.D. 18 slavery 87, 89, 94–95, 97, 113, 135, 139, 148, 191, 226 Slavic: languages 165; race 110, 159, 185, 206 Slavs 110, 134 Smith, Anthony D. 241 Sofia, Francesca 110–111, 193, 239, 241 Sorella, Vincenzo 112 Spartans 34 Spencer, Frank 241 Spini, Giorgio 149 Stäel, Madame de 87, 144 Stepan, Nancy 241 Stocking, George W., Jr. 195, 232, 234 Sturani, Maria L. 72, 79–80, 196, 241 Supersessionism 158 Syracusans 37 Syrians 119 Syro-Arabic 204 Tabacco, Giovanni 97, 111, 241 Tabarrini, Marco 110, 230 Tacitus, Publius Cornelius 87 Talamo, Giuseppe 192–194 Tantini, Francesco 18 Tarquin the Elder (king) 50 Tasso, Torquato 181 Tellini, Gino 110, 145, 242 temosfori 123, 125, 144 Tenerani, Pietro 211 Tessitore, Fulvio 241 Teutonic race 137, 139, 162 Themelly, Mario 40–42, 241 Thierry Amédée 100, 114, 129, 190 Thierry, Augustin 83–86, 92, 98, 109, 113, 129, 132, 146, 173, 194 Thiesse, Anne M. 41–42, 44, 241 Thom, Martin 4, 15–16, 32, 90, 109–111, 116, 144–147, 149, 193, 241–242 Thomas, Dominic 114, 241 Thraco-Pelasgian family see Greco-Latin languages Timpanaro, Sebastiano 49, 74, 86, 110, 116, 129–133, 145–148, 223, 242 Tiraboschi, Girolamo 112

Tommaseo, Nicolò 221, 228, 232 Traniello, Francesco 155, 188–189, 192, 236, 242 Transformism see Lamarckism Treves, Piero 51–52, 74–75, 193, 242 Trevisan, Sara 41, 234 Troy 45 Troya, Carlo 12, 81, 82, 88, 90–96, 98–101, 105–107, 110, 112–114, 116, 121, 151, 172, 190, 232 Tuccillo, Alessandro 18, 242 Turanian(s): Ligurian cranium as racially 210–211, 216; populations 210, 216; pre-Indo-European populations as racially 216; race 210–211, 216–217; Uralo-Altaic languages-speakers as 210 Turda, Marius 16, 45, 115, 198, 223, 226, 228, 240, 242 Turkic populations 69 type 1, 8, 12, 13–14, 46, 60–65, 74, 77, 82, 95, 105–108, 117–120, 124–126, 131, 135–141, 148–149, 151–152, 163, 165–166, 171, 176–178, 185, 187, 192, 204, 206, 213, 215–216, 222, 224, 240 typology 66, 152, 164, 171, 174, 177, 191, 195 Tyrrhenian(s) 28, 171, 172, 174; race 171, 177–178; settlement in Italy 171 Umbrians 54 Usher, William 148 Uzelac, Gordana 237 variety 8, 14, 46–47, 61, 65, 67–69, 77, 82, 100, 105–108, 117, 125–126, 135, 137, 162, 175–177, 185, 204, 206, 212–213, 222 Vater, Johann S. 100 Veca, Ignazio 188, 195, 242 Vegezzi-Ruscalla, Giovenale 13, 66, 115, 199–201, 203, 206–211, 217, 224–225, 232 Verri, Pietro 120 veterinary 18 Vico, Giambattista 25, 27–28, 35, 41, 45, 47–48, 57, 104, 120, 130, 132, 147, 159, 203, 232, 234 Vieusseux, Giovan P. 112 Vilallonga, Borja 110, 242 Villar, Francisco 44, 242 Viroli, Maurizio 3–4, 15, 242

Index  253 Volney, Constantin 190 Von Henneberg, Kristyna 233 Von Humboldt, Alexander 128, 190 Von Humboldt, Wilhelm 45 Von Linné, Carl see Linnaeus, Carolus Von Savigny, Fredrich C. 93, 112, 172 Wallerstein, Immanuel 17–18, 113, 233, 242 Welch, Rhiannon N. 242 wergild 92, 94, 114

Westergaard, Harald 197 Wong, Aliza 6, 16, 242 Wood, Ian 109–111, 147–148, 193–194, 242 Yellow race 68, 158 Young, Thomas 32 Zend language 99 Ziegler, Joseph 14, 44, 236 Zorzi, Andrea 242