Anglo-Italian relations in the Red Sea and Zanzibar, 1880-1888

Davies, Timothy John (2018). Anglo-Italian relations in the Red Sea and Zanzibar, 1880-1888. University of Birmingham. M.A.

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When Italy became a fully united country in 1870, Britain was an enthusiastic supporter of the new state. This feeling was reciprocated, with Italy regarding Britain as her most sincere friend in Europe. In February 1887 Britain joined Italy, Germany and Austria-Hungary in the Mediterranean Agreements, by which Britain guaranteed support for Italy in the event of attack upon her. However, by then circumstances had changed. The British occupation of Egypt and the Mahdist uprising had led to Britain becoming a significant Power in North-East Africa. During the same period, Italy had started establishing colonial settlements on the Red Sea. This led to a conflict in the region between Italian and British interests. In addition, Franco-Italian friction increased as Crispi, the Italian Premier since August 1887, continually provoked France, culminating in a crisis which nearly tipped Europe into a full-scale war in 1888. At the same time, Italy was trying to establish a colony on the Benadir coast of Zanzibar, which also disturbed British authority in East Africa. The combination of Italian challenges to British interests, and her provocation of France, led to an erosion of British trust in Italy and eventual dissolution of Britain’s association with her.

Type of Work: Thesis (Masters by Research > M.A.)
Award Type: Masters by Research > M.A.
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Arts & Law
School or Department: School of History and Cultures, Department of History
Funders: None/not applicable
Subjects: D History General and Old World > DA Great Britain


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