Informations and abstract
Keywords: Italian population, data reconstruction, pre-unification Italy
We present the first ever analysis of the provincial population in Italy since ca. 1770, using 1911 boundaries, and providing a key variable for future studies on Italian economic history. The new data reveal, in line with national figures, two distinct stages: one of low population growth before 1821, and one of higher growth after 1821. A preliminary inspection suggests that the process of Unification did not represent a significant factor of change in the demographic trends of the majority of the Italian provinces, with only a few exceptions. Rather, it seems that the end of the Napoleonic Wars and the period of Restoration constituted the key dynamics in driving population growth.