Force of Arms, Force of Opinions: Counterrevolution in the Papal States, 1790–1799

  • Mario Tosti
Part of the War, Culture and Society, 1750–1850 book series (WCS)


Those investigating the historical roots of modernity, who seek to uncover its origins and explore the development of secularization, cannot overlook the late revolutionary period under Napoleon Bonaparte. This truth extends equally to Italy. It is certainly no accident that over the last two decades scholarship has poured forth a wealth of material concerning the period’s ideological debates, its journalism, the formation of consensus, the forces massed against the democratic ordering of state and society, and state measures regarding welfare and military organization. As far as religious history is concerned, certain aspects of belief and behaviour have been studied in essays on revolutionary and counterrevolutionary activities. The varying reactions of bishops and other church members to occupying forces and alternating regimes have been scrutinized, for instance. The analysis of civil democratic celebrations has led to an understanding of the rituals and behavioural patterns that constituted the prelude to secularizing processes in Italy as well as in France.


Eighteenth Century Papal State French Revolution Church Member Military Organization 
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  1. 2.
    Gabriele De Rosa, ‘Mutamenti rivoluzionari e tradizioni confessionali nei paesi occupati dalle armate napoleoniche’, Ricerche di Storia Sociale e Religiosa 35 (1989): 7–19.Google Scholar

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© Mario Tosti 2013

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  • Mario Tosti

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