1893 in Italy

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See also: 1892 in Italy, other events of 1893, 1894 in Italy.

Events from the year 1893 in Italy.

Kingdom of Italy[edit]


The year is characterized by the Banca Romana scandal, discrediting the whole political system, and increasing violence in Sicily as a result of the Fasci Siciliani (Sicilian Leagues), a popular movement of democratic and socialist inspiration in 1891–1894.


Cartoon in the satirical magazine L'Asino (The Donkey) in June 1893, with Giolitti (right) and Tanlongo (left). "Savings and loans: the coup succeeded." (L'Asino, June 11, 1893)
Prints reproducing the massacre at Lercara Friddi in December 1893 during the Fasci Siciliani revolt
  • January 18 – An official report confirms the serious state of affairs in the Banca Romana: a deficiency of cash, cooked accounts, a note circulation of 135 million lire instead of the 75 million permitted by law, a great quantity of bad debts due to building speculation.[1] The next day the governor of the bank, Bernardo Tanlongo, and several of his subordinates are arrested.[2]
  • January 20 – Caltavuturo massacre in Caltavuturo in the Province of Palermo (Sicily), where local authorities killed 13 and wounded 21 peasants that occupied communal land they claimed was theirs. The claim for land reform was one of the demands of the Fasci Siciliani.[3]



  • March 20 – Prime Minister Giovanni Giolitti presents a bill to reorganize the banking system.
  • March 21 – Due to the Banca Romana scandal, the Chamber of Deputy's approves a proposal to establish a Commission of Inquiry on banks.


  • May 21–22 – Congress of the Fasci Siciliani in Palermo attended by 500 delegates from nearly 90 leagues and socialist circles.[5]
  • May 22 – The President of the Italian Chamber of Deputies, Giuseppe Zanardelli, urges King Umberto I not to accept the resignation of Giolitti. Giolitti agrees to reconstruct the government with Senator Gagliardo as Finance Minister.[6]


  • August 10 – A new Bank Act liquidates the Banca Romana and reforms the whole system of note issue, restricting the privilege to the new Banca d'Italia – mandated to liquidate the Banca Romana – and to the Banco di Napoli and the Banco di Sicilia, and providing for stricter state control.[7]
  • August 16–17 – Massacre of Italian workers of the Compagnie des Salins du Midi in Aigues-Mortes (France) by French villagers and workers. The New York Times, reporting from the trial of ringleaders later in the year, reported that "ten men were killed and twenty-six wounded".[8] Anti-French riots erupt in Italy. In Rome the windows of the French Embassy were smashed and for a while the angry mob seemed to get out of hand.


  • September 8 – While in Sicily the Fasci are spreading, in Reggio Emilia the Italian Workers' Party is celebrating its second congress and decides to adopt the name of Italian Socialist Party (Italian: Partito Socialista Italiano, PSI).


  • November 23 – At the opening of the Italian Parliament, the Italian Chamber of Deputies insists that the sealed report of the commission that investigated the Banca Romana scandal will be read immediately. Amidst increasing disorder the report is read and the conclusions of the commission that former Prime Minister Crispi, Prime Minister Giolitti, and former Finance Minister Luigi Luzzatti, had been aware of the conditions of the Banca Romana but had held back that information, is hailed with shouts for the resignation of Giolitti. Rival deputies exchange insults and push and pull each other over seats and desks over a dispute to impeach the government. While the President of the Chamber, Giuseppe Zanardelli, and the minister left the session, deputies refused orders to leave until the light was turned off at 10:00 PM and opposition deputies were cheered by a large crowd on the street.[9]
  • November 24 – The government headed by Giovanni Giolitti has to resign as a result of the Banca Romana scandal after the Chamber presented the report of the Parliamentary Commission of Inquiry on banks. The Commission concluded that press charges that Giolitti had used the bank's money in the last election campaign could not been proved although it declined to affirm that was disproved.[10]
  • November 27 – Giuseppe Zanardelli, President of the Chamber of Deputies, is charged with the formation of a new Cabinet.[11]


  • December 4 – Zanardelli partly forms a new Cabinet but Paolo Boselli refuses to accept the Finance Ministry. Most observers predict Zanardelli will not obtain a majority.[12]
  • December 10 – Eleven people are killed in Giardinello during the revolt of the Fasci Siciliani.[13]
  • December 15 – The new government headed by Francesco Crispi takes office.
  • December 21 – Battle of Agordat between Italian colonial troops and Mahdists from the Sudan. Emir Ahmed Ali campaigned against the Europeans in eastern Sudan. The Italian victory is the first decisive victory yet won by Europeans against the Sudanese revolutionaries.
  • December 25 – Eleven people are killed in Lercara Friddi during the revolt of the Fasci Siciliani. In December 1893, 92 peasants lost their lives in clashes with the police and army.[13]


  • September 7 – The Genoa Cricket & Athletics Club, the oldest Italian soccer club, is formed by British expatriates. In its earliest years, it principally competed in athletics and cricket. Association football was secondarily practised.




  1. ^ Seton-Watson, Italy from liberalism to fascism, pp. 154-56
  2. ^ Governor and Cashier Arrested; Large Overissue of Notes by The Banca Romana, The New York Times, January 20, 1893
  3. ^ (Italian) L’eccidio di «San Sebastiano», La Sicilia, February 8, 2009
  4. ^ Big Blow to The Mafia; Result of the Trial at Bologna Causes Surprise, The New York Times, August 1, 1902
  5. ^ (Italian) Il «battesimo» del socialismo, La Sicilia, May 24, 2009
  6. ^ A New Ministry In Italy; Giolitti Again Tries His Hand At Cabinet Forming, The New York Times, May 23, 1893
  7. ^ Alfredo Gigliobianco and Claire Giordano, Economic Theory and Banking Regulation: The Italian Case (1861-1930s), Quaderni di Storia Economica (Economic History Working Papers), Nr. 5, November 2010
  8. ^ The Aigues-Mortes Massacre: Story of the Assaults Upon Italian Workmen Told Anew", The New York Times, December 29, 1893
  9. ^ The Italian Bank Scandal; Report of the Investigation Read To Parliament. Many Deputies and Other Public Men Implicated, The New York Times, November 24, 1893
  10. ^ Cabinet Forced To Resign; Italian Ministers Called "Thieves" by the People, The New York Times, November 25, 1893
  11. ^ A New Premier For Italy; King Humbert Selects Zanardelli For The Post, The New York Times, November 28, 1893
  12. ^ The New Cabinet For Italy; Retrenchment Will Be the Main Feature of the Budget, The New York Times, December 5, 1893
  13. ^ a b (Italian) La strage di Giardinello, La Sicilia, December 11, 2011