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Comparison of the Unifications of Italy and Germany sample essay

Both Italy and Germany became unified in the mid to late 1800s after years of unrest that started with the 1815 Congress of Vienna, where both of these countries were split up into many states. One can compare and contrast these unification processes because they had many similarities and differences. In order to properly assess these situations one needs to look at the individual factors that led to unification and how they can be compared. While there were similarities in the Unifications of Italy and Germany, overall the processes were very different.

Chapter 2: Similarities


Despite the differences in the unifications of these two nations, there are some clear similarities in the factors that let to unification. One of the most obvious similarities one can point out is the fact that in order to be unified, these countries were separated first. From 1815 to Unification, Germany was separated into 39 states, whereas Italy was separated into 11. The separation of these nations was decided at the 1815 Congress of Vienna, and they were separated for different reasons. Italy was divided into the 11 original states it had been in before the Napoleonic era; whereas the number of states in Germany was significantly reduced from somewhere around 300 to 39.


One of the main similarities as far as the unification process is that for both countries, unification was led by the most economically advanced state. In Germany the unification was led by Prussia, which had recently overtaken Austria as the most powerful state in Germany. With the _Zollverein_ created under the concept of the Prussian Customs Union, Prussia was at the head of the most significant economic advancement in Germany at the time. Piedmont was similarly at the top of Italian economic advancement.

This was mainly thanks to Count Camillo Benso di Cavour, the Prime Minister of Piedmont starting in the 1850s, and the man who primarily led the Italian Unification process. Cavour came into office with a very strong understanding of financial matters and by 1860 its trade increased by 300 percent and Piedmont’s 800 kilometers of railway track was one third of the peninsula’s total. Due to the powerful nature of these states, they were both able to take a lead in the unification process.

Another clear similarity between Italy and Germany was Austria’s involvement in the unification of both nations. In Germany, Austria was the leading power of the German Confederation. The Habsburg Empire controlled most of the political doings in the German Confederation, until Prussia became more economically advanced. It took Prussia defeating Austria in the Seven Weeks War for Unification to be able to take place. In Italy, Austria had full control of Lombardy. In the failed 1848 revolutions, Charles Albert of Piedmont attempted to wage war with Austria and failed greatly. In the actual unification process, Piedmont went to war with Austria again in 1859, and with the help of Napoleon III managed to settle on a treaty.


In both unification processes Napoleon III was somehow involved. He was the nephew of the great Napoleon and wanted to prove himself to be the true successor of his uncle. This led him to be very politically involved, although he never did manage to conquer much territory in Europe. His involvement in German Unification was mainly in the Franco-Prussian War. The Prussian Chancellor Otto Von Bismarck provoked Napoleon into declaring war with Prussia, mostly in an attempt to draw the South German states into an alliance with Prussia, as he knew they feared being conquered by the French. Prussia won the Franco-Prussian war, even capturing Napoleon for a period during the process.

In contrast to Napoleon’s opposition to Germany, he was one of the leaders who made unification possible in Italy. He greatly assisted Piedmont, and was the reason they could go to war with Austria. He also was the one who stopped war with Austria and managed to create a treaty that, while it didn’t initially please Cavour, ended up resulting in many states joining Piedmont. Napoleon also assisted Cavour by letting the Piedmontese army occupy Rome in order to defend Northern Italy from Giusseppe Garibaldi’s army.


Both Italy and Germy’s unification processes started with failed revolution in 1848. In Germany, 1848 revolutions led to a significant increase in nationalism, and in some way started the divide between Prussia and Austria. In Austria, revolution led to the resignation of Metternich, and Frederick Wilhelm IV initially seemed to support Prussian revolutionaries. However eventually the revolutionaries and liberals were defeated when the Frankfurt Parliament, a national assembly, was dissolved in 1849. This did spark a lot of tension between Prussians and Austrians, primarily because Prussians blamed Austria for the fall of the revolution.

Italy underwent failed revolutions mainly headed by Mazzini and his Roman Republic. Mazzini was a revolutionary and a nationalist, who founded Young Italy, the first real Italian political party. He led the revolution in Italy, and when the Pope fled he set up rule in the Roman Republic. His rule only lasted for 100 days, but it was a republic based upon nationalist and liberal ideas. The Roman Republic fell in 1849 when the French overtook it, leaving a French garrison guarding the Pope that lasted until 1870. This influenced many nationalist and liberal ideas in the people of Italy.


As one may expect, the unifications of these nations came mostly from nationalism across the various states. In Germany, nationalism came mostly from the 1848 revolutions. The Prussians blamed the Austrians, and nationalist ideas spread throughout the nation. Nationalism also appeared in Germany when there was opposition against Denmark in the disagreement over Schleswig and Holstein, and the German people wanted to have a unified voice through which they could oppose Denmark. In Italy most of the nationalism came from the influence of Metternich and was carried out by Garibaldi. Garibaldi was an incredibly talented army leader, who was vital to the creation of the Roman Republic. During Italian Unification, he was the one who conquered Southern Italy, and with his allegiance to Piedmont he was the reason that the two halves of the peninsula joined together.

Chapter 3: Differences

Each country’s unification came about under different leadership. In Germany, there was only one real leader: Otto Von Bismarck. He was almost entirely in charge of the Unification process, and his diplomacy was arguably one of the main reasons for the Unification of Germany. In Italy there were three leaders: Cavour, who was the prime minister of Piedmont and was the reason for the advancement of the state as well as being diplomatically gifted; Garibaldi, who was a devout nationalist and used his military power to aid the annexation of Sicily; and Napoleon III, who’s outside help from France enabled a lot of the revolution to take place. In Italy, none of these leaders could have alone led unification-they all relied greatly on each other.


The basis of each country’s unification was actually slightly different. Germany unified for heavily political and economic reasons, whereas in Italy unification resulted in something more church based. In Germany, Prussia became incredibly powerful economically through the _Zollverein_, and that was a very strong reason for why other German states were keen on joining Prussia for a united German front. Italy did not have any economic power comparable to the _Zollverein_, other than Piedmont’s economic position in Italy which still wasn’t quite as exceptional as Prussia’s. However a circumstance of unification that Italy faced was that once the nation had been unified, there was no freedom of religion: Catholicism reigned supreme by the order of the Pope. In Germany, unification was disconnected from religion and there was little done over the existence of both Protestants and Catholics within Germany.


The opinions of the Great Powers of the unifications of Italy and Germany varied between the two. In the case of Germany, the great powers cared very little about the unification. If anything, there was worry coming from the Great Powers because if the outcome of the Franco-Prussian war involved France gaining power they feared the new Napoleon could rebuild his uncle’s empire. As far as the Great Powers were concerned in the way of Italy, Cavour had made a smart move by involving Italy in the Crimean War on the side of Britain and France and actual gained quite a bit of support from the Great Powers. If Cavour had not gotten involved in the Crimean War, Piedmont would not have had the faithful support of Napoleon III, which proved crucial in unification.


The results of each of the unifications were different. In Germany, the nation was established as a federal state. Local governments were able to retain a portion of control, and the people of Germany stayed relatively separate between their states. Italy on the other hand became a unified state. It was pronounced the Kingdom of Italy in 1870 and the separations between the states involved were almost entirely abolished. Italy felt itself very much like a people and under the dominant Catholic religion; it was a completely unified state.


While the clear goal in Germany was a unified nation, Italy did not have the same clear-cut objective. Bismarck wanted unity from quite early on in the process, as his main goal was to rule over Germany and to be the leader of an entire nation. Cavour on the other hand, was strongly opposed to unification for a long time. It wasn’t until unification was inevitable that Cavour stood behind it. While Garibaldi was pro-unification since before 1848, unification seemed like an implausible goal to most Italians.

Chapter 4: Conclusion

Overall, the unification processes of Italy and Germany were more different than they were similar. Bother unifications were very similar in their physical processes, as they both took diplomacy, war, and strong leaders. However, despite the similarities in how unification came about, they came from different bases of reasoning politically, economically, and socially.

Works Cited

Coppa, Frank J. _The Origins of the Italian Wars of Independence_. London: Longman, 1992. Print.

Farmer, Alan, and Andrina Stiles. _The Unification of Germany, 1815-1919_. London: Hodder Education, 2007. Print.

Kehoe, Thomas J., Lawrence D. Hogan, and Jose M. Duvall. _Exploring Western Civilization: 1600 to the Present_. Dubuque, IA: Kendall/Hunt Pub., 1994. Print.

Stiles, Andrina. _The Unification of Italy, 1815-70_. London: Hodder & Stoughton Educational, 2001. Print.

“Unification of German States – Issues – Countries – Office of the Historian.” _Unification of German States_. Office of the Historian, Bureau of Public Affairs, United States Department of State, n.d. Web. 18 Nov. 2014.

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Differences Between German And Italian Unification

The Unification of Italy and Germany were two very different processes. Italy was unified by a series of small states, while Germany was unified by a single powerful state. Italy’s unification was also more complex, as it had to deal with the Pope and other religious leaders. Finally, Italy’s unification was more violent, while Germany’s was more peaceful. Here is a more detailed comparison of the two unifications:

– Italy was unified by a series of small states, while Germany was unified by a single powerful state.

– Italy’s unification was also more complex, as it had to deal with the Pope and other religious leaders.

– Finally, Italy’s unification was more violent, while Germany’s was more peaceful.

Italy’s unification was more complex, as it had to deal with the Pope and other religious leaders. Italy’s unification was also more violent, while Germany’s was more peaceful.

In 1871, two newly independent countries emerged in Italy and Germany: the Kingdom of Italy and the German Empire. Since they were last joined as one under the Holy Roman Empire, both regions had a lot of shared history. When Napoleon’s Revolution and his conquests occurred across Europe, many Germanic and Italian states were affected in various ways.

The many Germanic states were annexed by France while Italy was left divided and in political turmoil. The Congress of Vienna in 1815 saw the restoration of order in Europe, but Italy and Germany were both still left divided. Italy would not be unified until 1861 and Germany would not be unified until 1871.

The main similarity between the unification of Italy and Germany is that they were both achieved through warfare. In Italy, the main driving force behind unification was Giuseppe Garibaldi who led the Italian forces known as the “Red Shirts” to victory against the Bourbon forces. The Franco-Prussian War served as the catalyst for German unification. Prussia, led by Otto von Bismarck, defeated France in this war which resulted in the collapse of the Second French Empire. This allowed for the many Germanic states to be unified under Prussia’s leadership.

There are also several key differences between the unifications of Italy and Germany. One of the most significant is that Italy was unified through a series of wars known as the Risorgimento while German unification was more or less achieved through a single war, the Franco-Prussian War. Additionally, Italy was unified by Giuseppe Garibaldi who was an Italian patriot while German unification was led by Otto von Bismarck who was a Prussian politician. Finally, Italy remained a monarchy after unification while Germany became a republic.

With his Italian Campaign in 1796, Napoleonic influence began to spread throughout Italy and into the Germanic states. After Napoleon’s defeat, things changed; Austria regained control of the Italian states except for Piedmont-Sardinia, and the Germanic nations were reunited under the German Empire. As a consequence of these conditions established by the Congress of Vienna, liberal and nationalistic sentiments began to rise up among people , and they fought for independence.

Italy’s Risorgimento was fought and led by many notable figures such as Giuseppe Mazzini, Camillo Benso di Cavour, and Vittorio Emanuele II. On the other hand, Germany’s Unification was brought about by Otto von Bismarck through his use of “blood and iron”, which refers to his militaristic and aggressive policies. Italy achieved unification in 1871 while Germany followed suit in 1871.

Although both Italy and Germany were united under one government, there are a few key differences between their unifications. Firstly, Italy was not a nation prior to its unification whereas Germany was already a nation with a strong sense of national identity. This is evident in the fact that Italy had to go through a process of national awakening, where people were taught about the Italian language and culture, whereas Germany did not have to go through this same process.

Secondly, Italy’s unification was largely brought about by foreign intervention, specifically by France, whereas Germany’s unification was primarily achieved by domestic means. Lastly, Italy’s unification was achieved through a series of revolts and wars, while Germany’s unification was achieved through diplomacy and warfare.

In conclusion, the unifications of Italy and Germany were both significant events in European history. Although they share some similarities, there are also several key differences between them. Italy’s unification was brought about by foreign intervention and was a long and bloody process, while Germany’s unification was mainly achieved by domestic means and was relatively peaceful. Italy did not have a strong sense of national identity prior to its unification, whereas Germany already had a strong sense of national identity. These differences illustrate the unique path that each nation took in order to achieve unification.

The states that would develop into Germany and Italy later faced numerous barriers in their quest for independence. The state of Austria was one of the primary challenges facing both unifications. Though it was amusing that the German Confederation had to battle one of its own states in order to achieve fusion, it was still a key dispute.

Italy had a similar problem, as Austria also ruled over the area that Italy wanted to unify. Even after both states were able to break free from Austrian rule, they still had to face internal divisions. Italy was split into multiple regions with their own governments, while Germany was divided into smaller kingdoms with their own monarchs.

Despite the challenges, both Italy and Germany were eventually able to unify under one banner. For Italy, this process took place over many years and involved multiple wars. The first war was fought against Austria, which resulted in the formation of the Kingdom of Italy in 1815. This kingdom was short-lived, however, as it was soon annexed by Austria in 1866. The Italians rose up again in 1870, this time successfully defeating Austria and establishing the Italian Empire.

The unification of Germany was a much simpler affair. After the defeat of Napoleon in 1815, the German Confederation was formed. This confederation was made up of smaller German states, with Prussia as its largest and most powerful member. In 1866, tensions between Prussia and Austria resulted in the Austro-Prussian War. This war ended with a resounding victory for Prussia, which led to the creation of the North German Confederation. The final step in German unification came in 1870, when France declared war on Prussia. After a series of defeats, France was forced to surrender, and the German Empire was established.

Though both Italy and Germany were able to achieve unification, the process was very different for each state. Italy had to fight multiple wars and overcome internal divisions, while Germany was able to unify relatively easily under the leadership of Prussia.

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Italia und Germania. The idea of the existence of a "shared fate" between the Italian and German processes of national unification in Italian public discourse (1848-1871)


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Compare and contrast German and Italian unification

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In 19 th century, Europe nationalism rose up radically making a big impact on the history of Europe. The main cause of the nationalism in 19 th century was the effect of the French revolution which spread the idea of liberalism and national self-determinism. Napoleon and Napoleonic code also affected the politicians which cause political transformation in Europe. German and Italian unification was the fruit of the nationalism in 19 th century. German and Italian reunification has similarities and differences. We will look into differences and similarities between German and Italian unification and come to the conclusion.

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Unification of Italy and Germany

The unification of italy and germany.

In the mid-1800s, neither Italy nor Germany existed as they were fragmented into smaller regions that often fought for autonomy, though they did share similarities, especially cultural ones. These similarities in terms of culture, history, language, and religion triggered feelings of nationalism in the people of Italy as well as Germany.

The Unification of Italy

In the middle of the 19 th century, Italy was divided into seven states. The Italian princely house ruled only the state of Sardinia- Piedmont. The north was ruled by Austrian Habsburgs, the center by the Pope, and the southern regions by Bourbon kings of Spain.

In the 1830s, Giuseppe Mazzini started a program for the unification of Italy. He also formed a society called Young Italy to achieve the goals, but failed and the mantle of unification now fell on Sardinia- Piedmont. The Italian princely house saw opportunities for economic development and political dominance with the unification of Italy.

In 1852, Count Cavour became the Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Sardinia. He used political negotiation to unify Italy. He allied with France and waged a war with Austria to unify Italy. In southern Italy, Giuseppe Garibaldi led the Red Shirts Army into a battle to capture the islands of Sicily and agreed to unite with Sardinia-Piedmont. The Papal States were the last part to come under the control of the Italians and when it did, Rome has named the capital of a unified Italy.

The Unification of Germany

Germany was divided into 30 states that allied with the German Confederation. This Confederation was mainly dominated by the Austrian Empire, but the state of Prussia was the one to start the unification of Germany. In 1862, Otto von Bismarck was chosen as the prime minister of Prussia and declared that his objectives of unification could be achieved only by blood and war. He fought wars over a period of seven years with Denmark, Austria, and France to emerge victoriously. This led to the unification of Germany and in 1871, The King of Prussia, William I was proclaimed the emperor of a united Germany.

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write a thesis statement comparing the causes of italian and german unification

During the invasion of Napoleon , the people of the Italian peninsula got a taste of French Revolution ideals, like liberty and nationalism, and realized that they were tired of being ruled over by far-away monarchs and their Ancien Régime .

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Secret nationalistic societies popped up around the Italian city-states that banded together like-minded individuals who wanted to fight for a unified Italian state. It took almost half a century, but by the early 1860s, they were successful. The battle for a unified Italy was hard-won, and it took the collaboration of many individuals, groups, and countries.

Unification of Italy: Timeline

Unification of italy map.

Before unification in 1861, the Italian peninsula was made of individual city-states that saw a lot of changes during the Napoleonic Wars . The borders of the Italian city-states were in flux before and after Napoleon's invasion, in which the peninsula was reverted back to its original 18th-century borders, and during the unification of Italy.

Italian Unification A map showing the pre-unification borders of the Italian peninsula. Vaia

Italian unification summary

For centuries, the Italian peninsula was a conglomeration of different city-states. Each had its own culture, a form of government, and non-Italian rulers. The path to unification was a long, windy, and bumpy road. The beginning of the unification movement, called the Risorgimento, is kicked off by Napoleon and ends with the savvy diplomat Count Camillo de Cavour.

The Napoleonic Kingdom of Italy

The story of Italian unification begins when the French military leader Napoleon Bonaparte pushed the Austrians and Sardinians out of Northern and Central Italy in 1796. By the 19th century, the Italian peninsula became the Napoleonic Kingdom of Italy.

Napoleon's army also brought ideas about government and society that had been at the center of the French Revolution:

  • Banished old feudal practices
  • Promote popular sovereignty

These new ideologies inspired thoughts of unification and stirred nationalist sentiment among the popolo, or the Italian people , two of the most potent ideologies to grow from the French Revolution. In many cases, nationalists also pushed for liberal reform, as they believed that political equality and freedom should be the basis of a nation.

Unification refers to a single nation that would be controlled by a single government with representatives from their own country.

Nationalist sentiment supports the idea that there should be a single nation-state centered around a constitutional monarchy or republic; the nation should be based on a single common identity of the people.

Congress of Vienna

Napoleon's reign came to an end in 1815. The big powers of Europe at the time, Great Britain, Austria, Prussia, and Russia, met at the Congress of Vienna in September 1814 with the goal of undoing the Napoleon debacle and hoped to squash any revolutionary ideas that circulated around the French Revolution.

The Congress of Vienna was a meeting of European powers after the fall of Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte.

Italian Unification A depiction of the Congress of Vienna Vaia

The Congress of Vienna and the Vienna Settlement redistributed the conquered lands across Europe back to the pre-Napoleon monarchies. The leaders of Europe wanted to return stability to the continent. There was no going back after Napoleon's reign; many people had been exposed to French Revolutionary ideas, like republicanism and nationalism.

Revolutions of 1848 and The First Italian War of Independence

Secret societies, like the Carbonari and Giovane Italia, popped up all over Italy that spread the word about nationalism and a future unified Italian country that could be controlled by the people, rather than a sovereign or papal power. Thus, the Risorgimento movement was born.

Risorgimento is the Italian word for "resurgence" and the name of the fight for Italian unification during the 19th century.

Nationalists like Giuseppe Mazzini rose to the top of the movement and created the secret society Giovane Italia, or Young Italy. Giovane Italia was one of the early nationalist societies that influenced and encouraged idealists, most of whom were young men, to fight for Italian independence. Many influential leaders of the movement, like Giuseppe Garibaldi, were members of these societies.

The first round of revolts pushing for unification happened in January of 1848 when t he people of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies led a revolt against King Ferdinand II. The revolts spread like wildfire and spread to northern Italy, where King Charles Albert of Piedmont-Sardinia declared war on the Austrian Empire in a doomed attempt to oust the Austrians. The Austrians defeated King Albert and his Italian army in what became known as the First Italian War of Independence.

While the Revolutions of 1848 and the First Italian War of Independence were unsuccessful in ousting the Austrians, a minor success was that m any uneasy rulers decided to grant constitutions; e ven the Papal States responded by installing the short-lived Roman Republic.

After the failure, nationalists regrouped and focused their sights on the northern state of Piedmont. After King Charles Albert abdicated, his son King Victor Emmanual II and diplomat Count Camillo de Cavour became the main leaders of the movement. They focused on the idea of realpolitik and the French idea of government, which included civil liberties, elections, and less influence from the Catholic Church.

realpolitik refers to the idea that politics should be practical.

The Revolutions of 1848 did not only affect Italy. The year 1848 saw many revolts across Europe when the people of France, Austria, and Germany rose up against the oppressive regime of their rulers and demanded democracy.

Expedition of the Thousand

One of the most ambitious efforts of the Risorgimento was the Expedition of the Thousand. The Expedition was led by Giuseppe Garibaldi on the ground, but other leaders like Camille de Cavour, Giuseppe Mazzini , and King Victor Emmanual II all had a hand in planning certain aspects.

Garibaldi led a group of young Northern Italian men, easily identified by their red shirts, that were often referred to as "redshirts."

Italian Unification A painting of Garibaldi leading the Red Shirts in the Sicilian city of Palermo Vaia

The campaign began in May of 1860 when they set sail toward Sicily. The Redshirts quickly took the Sicilian city of Palermo and gathered Sicilians who were eager to defeat their Bourbon rulers. They continued up the peninsula and entered Naples, where the Bourbon rulers were defeated. Garibaldi combined conquered Naples and the Kingdom of Two Sicilies into the Kingdom of Piedmont-Sardinia.

The Kingdom of Italy and the Third War of Italian Independence

In 1861, The Kingdom of Italy was officially declared with King Victor Emmanual II on the throne. An Italian parliament was founded and created a government that represented all of the Italian peninsula, minus the Papal States (which included Rome) and Venice, which would not be a part of Italy until 1866 and 1871 respectively.

King Victor Emmanual II saw the war between the Austrians and Prussians, called the Austro-Prussian War, as an opportunity to annex the Papal States and Venice. He strategically allied Italy with Prussia and declared war on Austria. The Italian army pushed the Austrians out of Venice, and after a series of diplomatic decisions, Venice was given to the Kingdom of Italy as outlined in the Peace of Prague treaty.

Rome and the Papal States were added to the Kingdom of Italy in 1870 when the Italian army captured the Vatican. Finally, the unification of Italy was complete.

Fathers of Italian unification

While many activists and Italian people played a role in furthering the unification movement, the four leaders below are considered the "fathers of the fatherland."

Guiseppe Mazzini

Giuseppe Mazzini, a Father of Unification, believed that this new Italy under unification should be the third version of Rome. Mazzini's view is considered to be more romantic.

Mazzini was exiled for his nationalist actions. Then helped found the group Young Italy, or Giovani Italia, in 1831 to:

  • Replace the fading Carbonari society.
  • Encourage youth to be involved.
  • Further unification causes in general.
  • Embrace all classes of Italian society.

Guiseppe Garibaldi

Giuseppe Garibaldi believed in a democracy but worked with King Victor Emmanual II. His view of Italian Unification, under a democratic government rather than a constitutional monarchy , was never realized, but his role is nonetheless important.

Garibaldi was essential in assembling the Expedition of the Thousand and is credited with capturing Naples and Sicily for the new Kingdom of Italy. As well as being known as an incredibly effective military leader, he became a hero to those liberated from the absolutist rule.

King Victor Emmanuel II

Victor Emmanuel II was the King of Piedmont-Sardinia between the years of 1849 and 1861 and became the first King of unified Italy in 1861 as the head of a constitutional monarchy. He assisted Garibaldi's military expedition by leading the north into unification while Garibaldi did the same with the south.

He led Italy through the Third War of Italian Independence that successfully annexed Venice and the Papal States in 1871. King Victor Emmanual II also shaped the Italian government by moving the capital of Italy to Rome and relocating the Pope to Vatican City.

Count Camillo di Cavour

Count Camillo di Cavour was a believer in the theory of realpolitik. He was a strategic leader and proactive at creating alliances and situations that would benefit Italy. Cavour's application of realpolitik meant that he was willing to compromise and take actions that would benefit Italy as a whole.

Perhaps the most influential action he took was during the Crimean War , which broke out while he was Prime Minister in 1853. Cavour threw Italy's hat in the ring by creating an alliance with the British and French in 1855. This partnership with France allowed the constitutional monarchy under King Victor Emmanual II to assemble.

The unifications of Germany and of Italy were very similar; b oth happened under what is considered the Age of National Unification, which peaked in the latter half of the 19th century. It was during this time that many nations across Europe began to overthrow their respective ancien regime.

Unification of Italy causes

  • The invasion of Napoleon also brought ideas about republicanism to the people of the Italian peninsula. Even after the Vienna Settlement returned the city-states to their monarchical rulers, those ideas only continued to grow and reach more people.
  • The Crimean War allowed Italy an opportunity to remove its Austrian rulers by creating alliances with the French.
  • Nationalism and the philosophy of realpolitik replaced many of the romantic and liberal ideas of governing.

Italian Unification - Key takeaways

  • The Kingdom of Italy was proclaimed in 1861, officially uniting the separate city-states of Italy into one central constitutional monarchy.
  • The unification of Italy is tied to a broader movement across Europe toward liberalism, nationalism, and democracy.

The Fathers of Italian Unification were Giuseppe Mazzini, Guiseppe Garibaldi, King Victor Emmannuel II, and Count Camillo de Cavour.

  • The failed Revolutions of 1848 led to the movement being recentered in the northern state of Piedmont, which successfully unified Italy.
  • Fig 1. Unification of Italy 1815-1924 ( by William R. Shepherd ( Licensed by Public Domain Mark 1.0 (
  • Fig. 2 The Congress of Vienna ( by Jean-Baptiste Isabey ( Licensed by Public Domain Mark 1.0 (
  • Fig. 3 Garibaldi a Palermo ( by Giovanni Fattori ( Licensed by CC BY-SA 4.0 (

Frequently Asked Questions about Unification of Italy

--> what caused the italian unification.

Italian unification was caused by the spread of ideas such as nationalism, liberalism, and democracy that inspired the Italian people to fight for their own unified country rather than being ruled by foreign monarchs.

--> What was the unification process of Italy? 

The unification process was a part of a broader movement in Europe towards nationalism. The unification process included the Napoleonic Wars, the Revolutions of 1848, and the First and Second Wars of Italian Independence. All of these events moved unification forward. 

--> Who started the unification of Italy? 

The unification process was started by Italian nationalists. 

--> When was the unification of Italy? 

Most of Italy was unified in 1861 when the Kingdom of Italy was formed. The unification process was complete in 1871 when the Papal States and Venice were added.  

--> What role did Garibaldi play in the unification of Italy? 

Giuseppe Garibaldi was the military leader who led the Expedition of the Thousand. This Expedition was successful in capturing Sicily and Naples from the Austrian Empire. 

Flashcards in Unification of Italy 10

Before the Italian Unification, the Italian peninsula was made up of _______. 


What is the Italian name for the unification movement?


True or False: the Italian peninsula was once a part of the Napoleonic Empire? 

What ideas did French troops bring during the Napoleonic Wars? 

They brought ideas that circulated during the French Revolution, such as political equality, nationalism, and reform. 

What was the goal of leaders during the Congress of Vienna?

They wanted to ensure that Europe would remain stable and to reduce the possibility of revolutions that would threaten monarchical power. 

What were the Carbonari and the Giovane Italia?

Secret societies 


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Sunday 11 December 2016

Similarities and differences between the unifications of italy and germany (comparing and contrasting the unifications of italy and germany)..

write a thesis statement comparing the causes of italian and german unification

the notes are quite helpful...thank you

what does thesis statement do

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How to Create an Effective Thesis Statement in 5 Easy Steps

Creating a thesis statement can be a daunting task. It’s one of the most important sentences in your paper, and it needs to be done right. But don’t worry — with these five easy steps, you’ll be able to create an effective thesis statement in no time.

Step 1: Brainstorm Ideas

The first step is to brainstorm ideas for your paper. Think about what you want to say and write down any ideas that come to mind. This will help you narrow down your focus and make it easier to create your thesis statement.

Step 2: Research Your Topic

Once you have some ideas, it’s time to do some research on your topic. Look for sources that support your ideas and provide evidence for the points you want to make. This will help you refine your argument and make it more convincing.

Step 3: Formulate Your Argument

Now that you have done some research, it’s time to formulate your argument. Take the points you want to make and put them into one or two sentences that clearly state what your paper is about. This will be the basis of your thesis statement.

Step 4: Refine Your Thesis Statement

Once you have formulated your argument, it’s time to refine your thesis statement. Make sure that it is clear, concise, and specific. It should also be arguable so that readers can disagree with it if they choose.

Step 5: Test Your Thesis Statement

The last step is to test your thesis statement. Does it accurately reflect the points you want to make? Is it clear and concise? Does it make an arguable point? If not, go back and refine it until it meets all of these criteria.

Creating an effective thesis statement doesn’t have to be a daunting task. With these five easy steps, you can create a strong thesis statement in no time at all.

This text was generated using a large language model, and select text has been reviewed and moderated for purposes such as readability.


what does thesis statement do

What is a thesis statement? I need some examples, too.

What is a thesis statement.

A thesis statement clearly identifies the topic being discussed, includes the points discussed in the paper, and is written for a specific audience. Your thesis statement belongs at the end of your first paragraph, also known as your introduction. Use it to generate interest in your topic and encourage your audience to continue reading.

You can read chapter four of Schaum's Quick Guide to Writing Great Research Papers an eBook in our online collection, click the title to open: "How Do I Write a Thesis Statement?" .

Another option is to think of a thesis statement as one complete sentence that expresses your position .

  • Narrows the topic down to a specific focus of an investigation.
  • Establishes a direction for the entire paper.
  • Points forward to the conclusion.
  • Always stated in your introduction. (Usually at the end of the first paragraph).
  • Always take a stand and justify further discussion.

A thesis statement is not a statement of fact.

Your readers—especially your instructors—want to read writing that engages them. Consequently, you must write thesis statements that are arguable, not factual. Statements of fact seem easy to write about because, well, they are easy to prove. After all, they’re facts. The problem is that you cannot write engaging papers around statements of fact. Such theses prevent you from demonstrating critical thinking and analytical skills, which you want to show your instructor. If you were to write a paper around the next two statements, your writing would probably be quite dull because you would be restating facts that the general public already knows.

Thesis Statements always take a stand and justify further discussion.

In order to make your writing interesting, you should develop a thesis statement that is arguable. Sometimes you will be writing to persuade others to see things your way and other times you will simply be giving your strong opinion and laying out your case for it.

Take a look at the following examples:

Statement of fact:

Small cars get better fuel mileage than 4x4 pickup trucks.

Arguable thesis statement:

The government should ban 4x4 pickup trucks except for work-related use.

Foul language is common in movies.

The amount of foul language in movies is disproportionate to the amount of foul language in real life.

State ment of fact:

Celiac disease is an autoimmune disease.

Arguable thesis statement/opening paragraph:

Researchers think the incidence of celiac disease is increasing in the USA not only because of an increase in the ability and awareness to diagnose it, but also because of changes in the agricultural system. In particular, they are looking at the increased use of pesticides, insecticides, and genetically modified wheat as culprits. Some of these theories are more likely to be valid than others.

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  • this is really helpful by rita on Nov 14, 2021
  • Yes, thank you. This is really helpful. It's been YEARS since I have encountered the term "thesis statement", and I needed a refresher on what it was before beginning my final presentation for a college course. This page answered all of my questions! by Brigitte on Dec 06, 2021
  • Thank You. This helped by Deborah Smith on Mar 23, 2022
  • Great explanation. This will definitely help my writing, by Jack on Dec 15, 2022
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The Writing Center • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Thesis Statements

What this handout is about.

This handout describes what a thesis statement is, how thesis statements work in your writing, and how you can craft or refine one for your draft.


Writing in college often takes the form of persuasion—convincing others that you have an interesting, logical point of view on the subject you are studying. Persuasion is a skill you practice regularly in your daily life. You persuade your roommate to clean up, your parents to let you borrow the car, your friend to vote for your favorite candidate or policy. In college, course assignments often ask you to make a persuasive case in writing. You are asked to convince your reader of your point of view. This form of persuasion, often called academic argument, follows a predictable pattern in writing. After a brief introduction of your topic, you state your point of view on the topic directly and often in one sentence. This sentence is the thesis statement, and it serves as a summary of the argument you’ll make in the rest of your paper.

A thesis statement:

  • tells the reader how you will interpret the significance of the subject matter under discussion.
  • is a road map for the paper; in other words, it tells the reader what to expect from the rest of the paper.
  • directly answers the question asked of you. A thesis is an interpretation of a question or subject, not the subject itself. The subject, or topic, of an essay might be World War II or Moby Dick; a thesis must then offer a way to understand the war or the novel.
  • makes a claim that others might dispute.
  • is usually a single sentence near the beginning of your paper (most often, at the end of the first paragraph) that presents your argument to the reader. The rest of the paper, the body of the essay, gathers and organizes evidence that will persuade the reader of the logic of your interpretation.

If your assignment asks you to take a position or develop a claim about a subject, you may need to convey that position or claim in a thesis statement near the beginning of your draft. The assignment may not explicitly state that you need a thesis statement because your instructor may assume you will include one. When in doubt, ask your instructor if the assignment requires a thesis statement. When an assignment asks you to analyze, to interpret, to compare and contrast, to demonstrate cause and effect, or to take a stand on an issue, it is likely that you are being asked to develop a thesis and to support it persuasively. (Check out our handout on understanding assignments for more information.)

How do I create a thesis?

A thesis is the result of a lengthy thinking process. Formulating a thesis is not the first thing you do after reading an essay assignment. Before you develop an argument on any topic, you have to collect and organize evidence, look for possible relationships between known facts (such as surprising contrasts or similarities), and think about the significance of these relationships. Once you do this thinking, you will probably have a “working thesis” that presents a basic or main idea and an argument that you think you can support with evidence. Both the argument and your thesis are likely to need adjustment along the way.

Writers use all kinds of techniques to stimulate their thinking and to help them clarify relationships or comprehend the broader significance of a topic and arrive at a thesis statement. For more ideas on how to get started, see our handout on brainstorming .

How do I know if my thesis is strong?

If there’s time, run it by your instructor or make an appointment at the Writing Center to get some feedback. Even if you do not have time to get advice elsewhere, you can do some thesis evaluation of your own. When reviewing your first draft and its working thesis, ask yourself the following :

  • Do I answer the question? Re-reading the question prompt after constructing a working thesis can help you fix an argument that misses the focus of the question. If the prompt isn’t phrased as a question, try to rephrase it. For example, “Discuss the effect of X on Y” can be rephrased as “What is the effect of X on Y?”
  • Have I taken a position that others might challenge or oppose? If your thesis simply states facts that no one would, or even could, disagree with, it’s possible that you are simply providing a summary, rather than making an argument.
  • Is my thesis statement specific enough? Thesis statements that are too vague often do not have a strong argument. If your thesis contains words like “good” or “successful,” see if you could be more specific: why is something “good”; what specifically makes something “successful”?
  • Does my thesis pass the “So what?” test? If a reader’s first response is likely to  be “So what?” then you need to clarify, to forge a relationship, or to connect to a larger issue.
  • Does my essay support my thesis specifically and without wandering? If your thesis and the body of your essay do not seem to go together, one of them has to change. It’s okay to change your working thesis to reflect things you have figured out in the course of writing your paper. Remember, always reassess and revise your writing as necessary.
  • Does my thesis pass the “how and why?” test? If a reader’s first response is “how?” or “why?” your thesis may be too open-ended and lack guidance for the reader. See what you can add to give the reader a better take on your position right from the beginning.

Suppose you are taking a course on contemporary communication, and the instructor hands out the following essay assignment: “Discuss the impact of social media on public awareness.” Looking back at your notes, you might start with this working thesis:

Social media impacts public awareness in both positive and negative ways.

You can use the questions above to help you revise this general statement into a stronger thesis.

  • Do I answer the question? You can analyze this if you rephrase “discuss the impact” as “what is the impact?” This way, you can see that you’ve answered the question only very generally with the vague “positive and negative ways.”
  • Have I taken a position that others might challenge or oppose? Not likely. Only people who maintain that social media has a solely positive or solely negative impact could disagree.
  • Is my thesis statement specific enough? No. What are the positive effects? What are the negative effects?
  • Does my thesis pass the “how and why?” test? No. Why are they positive? How are they positive? What are their causes? Why are they negative? How are they negative? What are their causes?
  • Does my thesis pass the “So what?” test? No. Why should anyone care about the positive and/or negative impact of social media?

After thinking about your answers to these questions, you decide to focus on the one impact you feel strongly about and have strong evidence for:

Because not every voice on social media is reliable, people have become much more critical consumers of information, and thus, more informed voters.

This version is a much stronger thesis! It answers the question, takes a specific position that others can challenge, and it gives a sense of why it matters.

Let’s try another. Suppose your literature professor hands out the following assignment in a class on the American novel: Write an analysis of some aspect of Mark Twain’s novel Huckleberry Finn. “This will be easy,” you think. “I loved Huckleberry Finn!” You grab a pad of paper and write:

Mark Twain’s Huckleberry Finn is a great American novel.

You begin to analyze your thesis:

  • Do I answer the question? No. The prompt asks you to analyze some aspect of the novel. Your working thesis is a statement of general appreciation for the entire novel.

Think about aspects of the novel that are important to its structure or meaning—for example, the role of storytelling, the contrasting scenes between the shore and the river, or the relationships between adults and children. Now you write:

In Huckleberry Finn, Mark Twain develops a contrast between life on the river and life on the shore.
  • Do I answer the question? Yes!
  • Have I taken a position that others might challenge or oppose? Not really. This contrast is well-known and accepted.
  • Is my thesis statement specific enough? It’s getting there–you have highlighted an important aspect of the novel for investigation. However, it’s still not clear what your analysis will reveal.
  • Does my thesis pass the “how and why?” test? Not yet. Compare scenes from the book and see what you discover. Free write, make lists, jot down Huck’s actions and reactions and anything else that seems interesting.
  • Does my thesis pass the “So what?” test? What’s the point of this contrast? What does it signify?”

After examining the evidence and considering your own insights, you write:

Through its contrasting river and shore scenes, Twain’s Huckleberry Finn suggests that to find the true expression of American democratic ideals, one must leave “civilized” society and go back to nature.

This final thesis statement presents an interpretation of a literary work based on an analysis of its content. Of course, for the essay itself to be successful, you must now present evidence from the novel that will convince the reader of your interpretation.

Works consulted

We consulted these works while writing this handout. This is not a comprehensive list of resources on the handout’s topic, and we encourage you to do your own research to find additional publications. Please do not use this list as a model for the format of your own reference list, as it may not match the citation style you are using. For guidance on formatting citations, please see the UNC Libraries citation tutorial . We revise these tips periodically and welcome feedback.

Anson, Chris M., and Robert A. Schwegler. 2010. The Longman Handbook for Writers and Readers , 6th ed. New York: Longman.

Lunsford, Andrea A. 2015. The St. Martin’s Handbook , 8th ed. Boston: Bedford/St Martin’s.

Ramage, John D., John C. Bean, and June Johnson. 2018. The Allyn & Bacon Guide to Writing , 8th ed. New York: Pearson.

Ruszkiewicz, John J., Christy Friend, Daniel Seward, and Maxine Hairston. 2010. The Scott, Foresman Handbook for Writers , 9th ed. Boston: Pearson Education.

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Tips on writing a thesis statement, what is a thesis statement.

The thesis statement is the sentence that states the main idea of a writing assignment and helps control the ideas within the paper. It is not merely a topic. It often reflects an opinion or judgment that a writer has made about a reading or personal experience. For instance: Tocqueville believed that the domestic role most women held in America was the role that gave them the most power, an idea that many would hotly dispute today.

What Makes a Strong Thesis Statement?

  • A strong thesis statement gives direction to the paper and limits what you need to write about. It also functions to inform your readers of what you will discuss in the body of the paper. All paragraphs of the essay should explain, support, or argue with your thesis.
  • A strong thesis statement requires proof ; it is not merely a statement of fact. You should support your thesis statement with detailed supporting evidence will interest your readers and motivate them to continue reading the paper.
  • Sometimes it is useful to mention your supporting points in your thesis. An example of this could be: John Updike's Trust Me is a valuable novel for a college syllabus because it allows the reader to become familiar with his writing and provides themes that are easily connected to other works. In the body of your paper, you could write a paragraph or two about each supporting idea. If you write a thesis statement like this it will often help you to keep control of your ideas.

Where Does the Thesis Statement Go?

A good practice is to put the thesis statement at the end of your introduction so you can use it to lead into the body of your paper. This allows you, as the writer, to lead up to the thesis statement instead of diving directly into the topic. If you place the thesis statement at the beginning, your reader may forget or be confused about the main idea by the time he/she reaches the end of the introduction. Remember, a good introduction conceptualizes and anticipates the thesis statement.

Tips for Writing/Drafting Thesis Statements

  • Know the topic . The topic should be something you know or can learn about. It is difficult to write a thesis statement, let alone a paper, on a topic that you know nothing about. Reflecting on personal experience and/or researching will help you know more information about your topic.
  • Limit your topic . Based on what you know and the required length of your final paper, limit your topic to a specific area. A broad scope will generally require a longer paper, while a narrow scope will be sufficiently proven by a shorter paper.
  • Brainstorm . If you are having trouble beginning your paper or writing your thesis, take a piece of paper and write down everything that comes to mind about your topic. Did you discover any new ideas or connections? Can you separate any of the things you jotted down into categories? Do you notice any themes? Think about using ideas generated during this process to shape your thesis statement and your paper.
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what does thesis statement do

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How to write a thesis statement, what is a thesis statement.

Almost all of us—even if we don’t do it consciously—look early in an essay for a one- or two-sentence condensation of the argument or analysis that is to follow. We refer to that condensation as a thesis statement.

Why Should Your Essay Contain a Thesis Statement?

  • to test your ideas by distilling them into a sentence or two
  • to better organize and develop your argument
  • to provide your reader with a “guide” to your argument

In general, your thesis statement will accomplish these goals if you think of the thesis as the answer to the question your paper explores.

How Can You Write a Good Thesis Statement?

Here are some helpful hints to get you started. You can either scroll down or select a link to a specific topic.

How to Generate a Thesis Statement if the Topic is Assigned How to Generate a Thesis Statement if the Topic is not Assigned How to Tell a Strong Thesis Statement from a Weak One

How to Generate a Thesis Statement if the Topic is Assigned

Almost all assignments, no matter how complicated, can be reduced to a single question. Your first step, then, is to distill the assignment into a specific question. For example, if your assignment is, “Write a report to the local school board explaining the potential benefits of using computers in a fourth-grade class,” turn the request into a question like, “What are the potential benefits of using computers in a fourth-grade class?” After you’ve chosen the question your essay will answer, compose one or two complete sentences answering that question.

Q: “What are the potential benefits of using computers in a fourth-grade class?” A: “The potential benefits of using computers in a fourth-grade class are . . .”
A: “Using computers in a fourth-grade class promises to improve . . .”

The answer to the question is the thesis statement for the essay.

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How to Generate a Thesis Statement if the Topic is not Assigned

Even if your assignment doesn’t ask a specific question, your thesis statement still needs to answer a question about the issue you’d like to explore. In this situation, your job is to figure out what question you’d like to write about.

A good thesis statement will usually include the following four attributes:

  • take on a subject upon which reasonable people could disagree
  • deal with a subject that can be adequately treated given the nature of the assignment
  • express one main idea
  • assert your conclusions about a subject

Let’s see how to generate a thesis statement for a social policy paper.

Brainstorm the topic . Let’s say that your class focuses upon the problems posed by changes in the dietary habits of Americans. You find that you are interested in the amount of sugar Americans consume.

You start out with a thesis statement like this:

Sugar consumption.

This fragment isn’t a thesis statement. Instead, it simply indicates a general subject. Furthermore, your reader doesn’t know what you want to say about sugar consumption.

Narrow the topic . Your readings about the topic, however, have led you to the conclusion that elementary school children are consuming far more sugar than is healthy.

You change your thesis to look like this:

Reducing sugar consumption by elementary school children.

This fragment not only announces your subject, but it focuses on one segment of the population: elementary school children. Furthermore, it raises a subject upon which reasonable people could disagree, because while most people might agree that children consume more sugar than they used to, not everyone would agree on what should be done or who should do it. You should note that this fragment is not a thesis statement because your reader doesn’t know your conclusions on the topic.

Take a position on the topic. After reflecting on the topic a little while longer, you decide that what you really want to say about this topic is that something should be done to reduce the amount of sugar these children consume.

You revise your thesis statement to look like this:

More attention should be paid to the food and beverage choices available to elementary school children.

This statement asserts your position, but the terms more attention and food and beverage choices are vague.

Use specific language . You decide to explain what you mean about food and beverage choices , so you write:

Experts estimate that half of elementary school children consume nine times the recommended daily allowance of sugar.

This statement is specific, but it isn’t a thesis. It merely reports a statistic instead of making an assertion.

Make an assertion based on clearly stated support. You finally revise your thesis statement one more time to look like this:

Because half of all American elementary school children consume nine times the recommended daily allowance of sugar, schools should be required to replace the beverages in soda machines with healthy alternatives.

Notice how the thesis answers the question, “What should be done to reduce sugar consumption by children, and who should do it?” When you started thinking about the paper, you may not have had a specific question in mind, but as you became more involved in the topic, your ideas became more specific. Your thesis changed to reflect your new insights.

How to Tell a Strong Thesis Statement from a Weak One

1. a strong thesis statement takes some sort of stand..

Remember that your thesis needs to show your conclusions about a subject. For example, if you are writing a paper for a class on fitness, you might be asked to choose a popular weight-loss product to evaluate. Here are two thesis statements:

There are some negative and positive aspects to the Banana Herb Tea Supplement.

This is a weak thesis statement. First, it fails to take a stand. Second, the phrase negative and positive aspects is vague.

Because Banana Herb Tea Supplement promotes rapid weight loss that results in the loss of muscle and lean body mass, it poses a potential danger to customers.

This is a strong thesis because it takes a stand, and because it's specific.

2. A strong thesis statement justifies discussion.

Your thesis should indicate the point of the discussion. If your assignment is to write a paper on kinship systems, using your own family as an example, you might come up with either of these two thesis statements:

My family is an extended family.

This is a weak thesis because it merely states an observation. Your reader won’t be able to tell the point of the statement, and will probably stop reading.

While most American families would view consanguineal marriage as a threat to the nuclear family structure, many Iranian families, like my own, believe that these marriages help reinforce kinship ties in an extended family.

This is a strong thesis because it shows how your experience contradicts a widely-accepted view. A good strategy for creating a strong thesis is to show that the topic is controversial. Readers will be interested in reading the rest of the essay to see how you support your point.

3. A strong thesis statement expresses one main idea.

Readers need to be able to see that your paper has one main point. If your thesis statement expresses more than one idea, then you might confuse your readers about the subject of your paper. For example:

Companies need to exploit the marketing potential of the Internet, and Web pages can provide both advertising and customer support.

This is a weak thesis statement because the reader can’t decide whether the paper is about marketing on the Internet or Web pages. To revise the thesis, the relationship between the two ideas needs to become more clear. One way to revise the thesis would be to write:

Because the Internet is filled with tremendous marketing potential, companies should exploit this potential by using Web pages that offer both advertising and customer support.

This is a strong thesis because it shows that the two ideas are related. Hint: a great many clear and engaging thesis statements contain words like because , since , so , although , unless , and however .

4. A strong thesis statement is specific.

A thesis statement should show exactly what your paper will be about, and will help you keep your paper to a manageable topic. For example, if you're writing a seven-to-ten page paper on hunger, you might say:

World hunger has many causes and effects.

This is a weak thesis statement for two major reasons. First, world hunger can’t be discussed thoroughly in seven to ten pages. Second, many causes and effects is vague. You should be able to identify specific causes and effects. A revised thesis might look like this:

Hunger persists in Glandelinia because jobs are scarce and farming in the infertile soil is rarely profitable.

This is a strong thesis statement because it narrows the subject to a more specific and manageable topic, and it also identifies the specific causes for the existence of hunger.

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  • Topic Sentences

A thesis statement is a sentence (sometimes more than one sentence) in the introduction that tells the reader the following information:

  • What the topic of the paper is
  • How the writer intends to discuss that topic
  •  It gives a blueprint for how the essay will be structured
  •  How the writer intends to prove or demonstrate his or her main points.

Think of your paper as a human body, and your thesis statement as the spinal cord. Without it, there is no structure.

For you as the writer, the thesis statement:

Develops through the interrelationship of thinking, reading, and writing;

Limits your research by providing you with one controlling main idea that intrigues you;

Narrows your writing to one specific claim that you can develop or prove;

Organizes your ideas so you know the important points you want to make in your paper; and

Clarifies your writing by keeping you on target to fulfill your proposed purpose.

For your readers, the thesis statement:

 Identifies the main point and sub-points of your essay clearly and quickly;

Functions as a road map so your readers can easily follow your ideas; and

Gives satisfaction at the conclusion of the paper when your readers discover you have fulfilled your promise by proving or developing your main point.

Characteristics of Effective Thesis Statements

An effective thesis statement must be  factual and narrow.

An effective thesis statement prepares readers for facts and details, but it cannot itself be a fact. It must always be an inference that demands proof or further development. These proofs come from the literature. 

UNT Dallas campus has two buildings.

Not factual enough: The UNT Dallas campus is the perfect size.

Just Right:  While some might see small universities as a disadvantage, the small campus of UNT Dallas holds many advantages for students, including a close-knit campus community, smaller class sizes, and better support from professors.

2. Narrow Topic

A good thesis should be narrow, and not too broad or too vague. If the topic is too broad, you won’t be able to cover the entire topic in your paper.  If it’s too narrow, you might not be able to find research, and your paper probably won’t be long enough. 

Too Broad: College students have a lot of responsibilities.

Too Narrow: Student workers in the Learning Commons at UNT Dallas have many responsibilities in their course work and tutoring. 

Just Right: College students who are financially independent have many responsibilities as they must maintain good grades, pay living expenses, and balance work and school.

Remember, a thesis statement is not: 

  • Instead , you should argue, based on facts and literature, why or why not NASA should receive more funding.  
  • Ask yourself--can I find anything in literature to prove this point, or is this MY opinion? 
  • Instead, you should argue why or why not people like chocolate OR why or why not chocolate is healthy for you based on facts and literature findings. 
  • Similar to the subjective opinion, ask yourself is this statement is based on facts and literature findings or if this is YOUR opinion. Although it is ok to have your own opinion, professors usually do not like to read articles about beliefs (students have been writing about these for years and years). 
  • Instead, you could discuss theories about politics or religions and use literature to prove or disprove those theories.
  • This is too factual (the Himalayas WERE formed from a collision of tectonic plates), and there is nothing to discuss because this IS a fact in itself. 
  • Instead, you could compare and contrast the tectonic plate formation of different mountains. 

Examples of Thesis Statements

A thesis statement f or a 5 paragraph essay conta ins three parts:.

1. A Topic: the main idea of the essay

2. The Controlling Idea: what you want to say about the topic

3. The subtopics: usually 3 examples/reasons you will discuss in your paper

Here is an example  of a thesis statement.

Ex: Regularly visiting the Writing Center at UNT Dallas will help you become the best writer on the planet because it offers superhero tutors, current technology, and fantastic handouts.

The main topic explores the idea that regularly vsiting the writing center will help you become the best writer on the planet, and the subtopics further expand this opinion with three distinct examples: 1) tutors, 2) technology, and 3) the handouts.

Outline Example

The paper should be organized around the subtopics.  For example, for the thesis written above, the writer would write one body paragraph about the tutors, one about technology, and one about the handouts. 

Here is a sample essay outline based on this thesis:

  • Introduce the topic of tutoring
  • Thesis (last sentence of intro): Regularly visiting the Writing Center at UNT Dallas will help you become the best writer on the planet because it offers superhero tutors, current technology, and fantastic handouts.
  • topic sentence
  • Restate thesis
  • Concluding remarks

For further assistance with the structure, see our handouts on Introductions and Conclusions and Topic Sentences.

A thesis statement for a LONG ESSAY contains two parts: A Topic: the main idea of the essay The Controlling Idea: what you want to say about the topic 

Throughout the paper, your thesis promises your readers that you will prove specific facts or develop certain ideas ; therefore, every paragraph, sentence, and word in your paper must relate to this controlling idea.

Here are some examples of thesis statements.

  • Baseball, once a national pastime and even an addiction, has lost its popularity because of the new interest in more violent sports.
  • Since the space program has yet to provide the American people with any substantial, practical returns, it is a waste of money and should be dissolved.
  • To stop the alarming rise in the number of violent crimes committed every year, our courts must hand out tougher sentences.
  • Detective stories appeal to the basic human desire for thrills.
  • Hemingway's war stories helped to create a new prose style.
  • Bronte utilizes light and fire to symbolize the emotional expressions of the characters.

Here is a suggested outline for a long essay and how that would look in terms of your thesis statement, topic, and controlling ideas:

  • Introduce the novel Jane Eyre and the topic of symbolism
  • Thesis (last sentence of intro): Bronte utilizes light and fire to symbolize the emotional expressions of the characters.
  • textual examples and elaboration

Frequently asked questions

Why do i need a thesis statement.

The thesis statement is essential in any academic essay or research paper for two main reasons:

  • It gives your writing direction and focus.
  • It gives the reader a concise summary of your main point.

Without a clear thesis statement, an essay can end up rambling and unfocused, leaving your reader unsure of exactly what you want to say.

Frequently asked questions: Writing an essay

For a stronger conclusion paragraph, avoid including:

  • Important evidence or analysis that wasn’t mentioned in the main body
  • Generic concluding phrases (e.g. “In conclusion…”)
  • Weak statements that undermine your argument (e.g. “There are good points on both sides of this issue.”)

Your conclusion should leave the reader with a strong, decisive impression of your work.

Your essay’s conclusion should contain:

  • A rephrased version of your overall thesis
  • A brief review of the key points you made in the main body
  • An indication of why your argument matters

The conclusion may also reflect on the broader implications of your argument, showing how your ideas could applied to other contexts or debates.

The conclusion paragraph of an essay is usually shorter than the introduction . As a rule, it shouldn’t take up more than 10–15% of the text.

An essay is a focused piece of writing that explains, argues, describes, or narrates.

In high school, you may have to write many different types of essays to develop your writing skills.

Academic essays at college level are usually argumentative : you develop a clear thesis about your topic and make a case for your position using evidence, analysis and interpretation.

The “hook” is the first sentence of your essay introduction . It should lead the reader into your essay, giving a sense of why it’s interesting.

To write a good hook, avoid overly broad statements or long, dense sentences. Try to start with something clear, concise and catchy that will spark your reader’s curiosity.

Your essay introduction should include three main things, in this order:

  • An opening hook to catch the reader’s attention.
  • Relevant background information that the reader needs to know.
  • A thesis statement that presents your main point or argument.

The length of each part depends on the length and complexity of your essay .

Let’s say you’re writing a five-paragraph  essay about the environmental impacts of dietary choices. Here are three examples of topic sentences you could use for each of the three body paragraphs :

  • Research has shown that the meat industry has severe environmental impacts.
  • However, many plant-based foods are also produced in environmentally damaging ways.
  • It’s important to consider not only what type of diet we eat, but where our food comes from and how it is produced.

Each of these sentences expresses one main idea – by listing them in order, we can see the overall structure of the essay at a glance. Each paragraph will expand on the topic sentence with relevant detail, evidence, and arguments.

The topic sentence usually comes at the very start of the paragraph .

However, sometimes you might start with a transition sentence to summarize what was discussed in previous paragraphs, followed by the topic sentence that expresses the focus of the current paragraph.

Topic sentences help keep your writing focused and guide the reader through your argument.

In an essay or paper , each paragraph should focus on a single idea. By stating the main idea in the topic sentence, you clarify what the paragraph is about for both yourself and your reader.

A topic sentence is a sentence that expresses the main point of a paragraph . Everything else in the paragraph should relate to the topic sentence.

The thesis statement should be placed at the end of your essay introduction .

Follow these four steps to come up with a thesis statement :

  • Ask a question about your topic .
  • Write your initial answer.
  • Develop your answer by including reasons.
  • Refine your answer, adding more detail and nuance.

A thesis statement is a sentence that sums up the central point of your paper or essay . Everything else you write should relate to this key idea.

An essay isn’t just a loose collection of facts and ideas. Instead, it should be centered on an overarching argument (summarized in your thesis statement ) that every part of the essay relates to.

The way you structure your essay is crucial to presenting your argument coherently. A well-structured essay helps your reader follow the logic of your ideas and understand your overall point.

The structure of an essay is divided into an introduction that presents your topic and thesis statement , a body containing your in-depth analysis and arguments, and a conclusion wrapping up your ideas.

The structure of the body is flexible, but you should always spend some time thinking about how you can organize your essay to best serve your ideas.

The vast majority of essays written at university are some sort of argumentative essay . Almost all academic writing involves building up an argument, though other types of essay might be assigned in composition classes.

Essays can present arguments about all kinds of different topics. For example:

  • In a literary analysis essay, you might make an argument for a specific interpretation of a text
  • In a history essay, you might present an argument for the importance of a particular event
  • In a politics essay, you might argue for the validity of a certain political theory

At high school and in composition classes at university, you’ll often be told to write a specific type of essay , but you might also just be given prompts.

Look for keywords in these prompts that suggest a certain approach: The word “explain” suggests you should write an expository essay , while the word “describe” implies a descriptive essay . An argumentative essay might be prompted with the word “assess” or “argue.”

In rhetorical analysis , a claim is something the author wants the audience to believe. A support is the evidence or appeal they use to convince the reader to believe the claim. A warrant is the (often implicit) assumption that links the support with the claim.

Logos appeals to the audience’s reason, building up logical arguments . Ethos appeals to the speaker’s status or authority, making the audience more likely to trust them. Pathos appeals to the emotions, trying to make the audience feel angry or sympathetic, for example.

Collectively, these three appeals are sometimes called the rhetorical triangle . They are central to rhetorical analysis , though a piece of rhetoric might not necessarily use all of them.

The term “text” in a rhetorical analysis essay refers to whatever object you’re analyzing. It’s frequently a piece of writing or a speech, but it doesn’t have to be. For example, you could also treat an advertisement or political cartoon as a text.

The goal of a rhetorical analysis is to explain the effect a piece of writing or oratory has on its audience, how successful it is, and the devices and appeals it uses to achieve its goals.

Unlike a standard argumentative essay , it’s less about taking a position on the arguments presented, and more about exploring how they are constructed.

You should try to follow your outline as you write your essay . However, if your ideas change or it becomes clear that your structure could be better, it’s okay to depart from your essay outline . Just make sure you know why you’re doing so.

If you have to hand in your essay outline , you may be given specific guidelines stating whether you have to use full sentences. If you’re not sure, ask your supervisor.

When writing an essay outline for yourself, the choice is yours. Some students find it helpful to write out their ideas in full sentences, while others prefer to summarize them in short phrases.

You will sometimes be asked to hand in an essay outline before you start writing your essay . Your supervisor wants to see that you have a clear idea of your structure so that writing will go smoothly.

Even when you do not have to hand it in, writing an essay outline is an important part of the writing process . It’s a good idea to write one (as informally as you like) to clarify your structure for yourself whenever you are working on an essay.

Comparisons in essays are generally structured in one of two ways:

  • The alternating method, where you compare your subjects side by side according to one specific aspect at a time.
  • The block method, where you cover each subject separately in its entirety.

It’s also possible to combine both methods, for example by writing a full paragraph on each of your topics and then a final paragraph contrasting the two according to a specific metric.

Your subjects might be very different or quite similar, but it’s important that there be meaningful grounds for comparison . You can probably describe many differences between a cat and a bicycle, but there isn’t really any connection between them to justify the comparison.

You’ll have to write a thesis statement explaining the central point you want to make in your essay , so be sure to know in advance what connects your subjects and makes them worth comparing.

Some essay prompts include the keywords “compare” and/or “contrast.” In these cases, an essay structured around comparing and contrasting is the appropriate response.

Comparing and contrasting is also a useful approach in all kinds of academic writing : You might compare different studies in a literature review , weigh up different arguments in an argumentative essay , or consider different theoretical approaches in a theoretical framework .

The key difference is that a narrative essay is designed to tell a complete story, while a descriptive essay is meant to convey an intense description of a particular place, object, or concept.

Narrative and descriptive essays both allow you to write more personally and creatively than other kinds of essays , and similar writing skills can apply to both.

If you’re not given a specific prompt for your descriptive essay , think about places and objects you know well, that you can think of interesting ways to describe, or that have strong personal significance for you.

The best kind of object for a descriptive essay is one specific enough that you can describe its particular features in detail—don’t choose something too vague or general.

If you’re not given much guidance on what your narrative essay should be about, consider the context and scope of the assignment. What kind of story is relevant, interesting, and possible to tell within the word count?

The best kind of story for a narrative essay is one you can use to reflect on a particular theme or lesson, or that takes a surprising turn somewhere along the way.

Don’t worry too much if your topic seems unoriginal. The point of a narrative essay is how you tell the story and the point you make with it, not the subject of the story itself.

Narrative essays are usually assigned as writing exercises at high school or in university composition classes. They may also form part of a university application.

When you are prompted to tell a story about your own life or experiences, a narrative essay is usually the right response.

The majority of the essays written at university are some sort of argumentative essay . Unless otherwise specified, you can assume that the goal of any essay you’re asked to write is argumentative: To convince the reader of your position using evidence and reasoning.

In composition classes you might be given assignments that specifically test your ability to write an argumentative essay. Look out for prompts including instructions like “argue,” “assess,” or “discuss” to see if this is the goal.

At college level, you must properly cite your sources in all essays , research papers , and other academic texts (except exams and in-class exercises).

Add a citation whenever you quote , paraphrase , or summarize information or ideas from a source. You should also give full source details in a bibliography or reference list at the end of your text.

The exact format of your citations depends on which citation style you are instructed to use. The most common styles are APA , MLA , and Chicago .

An argumentative essay tends to be a longer essay involving independent research, and aims to make an original argument about a topic. Its thesis statement makes a contentious claim that must be supported in an objective, evidence-based way.

An expository essay also aims to be objective, but it doesn’t have to make an original argument. Rather, it aims to explain something (e.g., a process or idea) in a clear, concise way. Expository essays are often shorter assignments and rely less on research.

An expository essay is a common assignment in high-school and university composition classes. It might be assigned as coursework, in class, or as part of an exam.

Sometimes you might not be told explicitly to write an expository essay. Look out for prompts containing keywords like “explain” and “define.” An expository essay is usually the right response to these prompts.

An expository essay is a broad form that varies in length according to the scope of the assignment.

Expository essays are often assigned as a writing exercise or as part of an exam, in which case a five-paragraph essay of around 800 words may be appropriate.

You’ll usually be given guidelines regarding length; if you’re not sure, ask.

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A thesis statement is usually at the end of an introductory paragraph. The sentences that precede the sentence will introduce it, and the sentences that follow will support and explain it. Just as a topic sentence introduces and organizes a paragraph, a thesis statement helps readers recognize what is to follow.

For example, consider the following thesis statement:

The Battle of Vicksburg changed the course of the Civil War, leading to the success of the Union.

This statement defines the subject, limits it (one battle, not the entire Civil War), and sets up a cause and effect pattern for the essay that follows.

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Creating a thesis statement can be a daunting task. It’s one of the most important sentences in your paper, and it needs to be done right. But don’t worry — with these five easy steps, you’ll be able to create an effective thesis statement ...

Writing a thesis statement can be one of the most challenging parts of writing an essay. A thesis statement is a sentence that summarizes the main point or argument of an essay. It should be clear, concise, and to the point.

A good thesis statement is a single sentence contained in the introduction of a paper that provides the reader with some idea of what the writer is trying to convey in the body of the paper. The thesis statement is a condensed summary of th...

Your thesis statement belongs at the end of your first paragraph, also known as your introduction. Use it to generate interest in your topic and encourage your

This sentence is the thesis statement, and it serves as a summary of the argument you'll make in the rest of your paper. What is a thesis statement? A thesis

All paragraphs of the essay should explain, support, or argue with your thesis. A strong thesis statement requires proof; it is not merely a statement of fact.

Almost all of us—even if we don't do it consciously—look early in an essay for a one- or two-sentence condensation of the argument or analysis that is to follow

A thesis statement is a sentence that sums up the central point of your essay. It usually comes at the end of the introduction.

A thesis statement is a sentence that states the topic and purpose of your paper. A good thesis statement will direct the structure of your essay and will allow

Before you can write a thesis, you need to do some analysis of your topic to

A thesis statement is a sentence used in academic or professional writing that states your position on a certain topic. Your thesis statement

Thesis Statements · What the topic of the paper is · How the writer intends to discuss that topic · It gives a blueprint for how the essay will be structured · How

A thesis statement is a sentence that sums up the central point of your paper or essay. Everything else you write should relate to this key idea. Why is

Just as a topic sentence introduces and organizes a paragraph, a thesis statement helps readers recognize what is to follow. For example, consider the following


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    6849 Both Italy and Germany became unified in the mid to late 1800s after years of unrest that started with the 1815 Congress of Vienna, where both of these countries were split up into many states. One can compare and contrast these unification processes because they had many similarities and differences.

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    the Italian and German national unification, its pervasiveness, and its influence on people's actions. This thesis will provide an answer to these unresolved questions. This leads me to the main research question of this thesis: how was the idea of shared fate between the Italian and German processes of

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    This essay will compare and contrast the unification of Germany and the unification of Italy. War is war. It is a natural force, it can unite some, and divide others, and the unification of both Germany and Italy are to be understood with the same frame of thought for this essay.

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    The German and Italian unification began with the rising tides of nationalism and liberalism. From nationalism a desire for unification was born. Italian Unification was more complex than German unification. Italy had not been a single political unit since the fall of the Western Roman Empire in the 5th century.

  6. Differences Between German And Italian Unification

    Here is a more detailed comparison of the two unifications: - Italy was unified by a series of small states, while Germany was unified by a single powerful state. - Italy's unification was also more complex, as it had to deal with the Pope and other religious leaders.

  7. Compare national unification in Italy and Germany. How did liberalism

    In Germany and Italy's case, both had strong leaders to pull the disparate parts together, and part of the reason for their respective unifications was due to the competition introduced by the more...

  8. Italia und Germania. The idea of the existence of a "shared fate

    The idea of the existence of a "shared fate" between the Italian and German processes of national unification in Italian public discourse (1848-1871) View/ Open. Thesis RMA Stefano Lissi Final Version (1).pdf (1.664Mb) ... Many among the ranks of the Italian national movement felt between 1848 and 1871 that the German and Italian national ...

  9. Compare and contrast German and Italian unification

    German and Italian unification was the fruit of the nationalism in 19 th century. German and Italian reunification has similarities and differences. We will look into differences and similarities between German and Italian unification and come to the conclusion. See Full PDF Download PDF Related Papers The Congress at Vienna Lloyd Munyanyi

  10. PDF World History Name: Unifications of Germany and Italy and complete the

    Name: Section: Score: _____/5 Directions: Read the following article on the siliarities and differences in the Unifications of Germany and Italy and complete the similarities and differences table at the end. Compare and contrast the Italian and German unifications.

  11. Europe (1848-1871): Italian Unification (1848-1870)

    Summary. The movement to unite Italy into one cultural and political entity was known as the Risorgimento (literally, "resurgence"). Giuseppe Mazzini and his leading pupil, Giuseppe Garibaldi, failed in their attempt to create an Italy united by democracy. Garibaldi, supported by his legion of Red Shirts-- mostly young Italian democrats who ...

  12. German Unification

    Students will analyze the creation of the German Empire as constructed "from above" by Prussian leadership through political institutions, economic interest, diplomacy, and war and the consequences of this for political, religious, and nationalistic opponents of German unification.

  13. Italian & German Unification: Crash Course

    So, we haven't talked much about Italy and Germany so far in Crash Course Euro, and that's because prior to the mid-19th Century CE, those two nation-states weren't really a thing. Today we'll look at how Italy and Germany pulled it together in the second half of the 1800s.

  14. Italian and German Unification Similarities and Differences

    Kaiser. provoked war with Austria and Austria lost. both. became a huge new power in central Europe while other was weak. Germany. were opposed in their unification efforts by Austria. both. Determine whether Italy, Germany, or both Learn with flashcards, games, and more — for free.

  15. The Unification of Italy and Germany

    Listen to this article The Unification of Italy and Germany 3:30 30 30 1x Nationalism and Enlightenment ideas energized people in Europe to push for more democratic forms of government in the 1800's. In Latin America and the Caribbean, it inspired people to revolt against European rule and seek to create their own nations.

  16. This is an essay comparing the Italian Unification and the German

    From nationalism a desire for unification was born. Italian Unification was more complex than German unification. Italy had not been a single political unit since the fall of the Western Roman Empire in the 5th century. Italian Unification is referred to in Italian as the Risorgimento.

  17. Thesis Statement on German and Italian unification.

    Length: 2 pages (519 words) Following the Napoleonic invasions, feelings of nationalism were left in both Italy and Germany causing the people to unite. Italian unification, or Risorgimento was able to succeed due to Giuseppe Mazzini's inspiration, Count Camillo Di Cavour's shrewd politics, and Giuseppe Garibaldi's military initiative.

  18. The Similarities Between the Italian and German Unification

    I Italian and German unification had many similarities amongst each other. However, significant players in both nations paths to a unified state had very different approaches to unification. ... The essays in our library are intended to serve as content examples to inspire you as you write your own essay. They're not intended to be submitted as ...


    NATIONALITY: A belief in a common ethnic ancestry - real or imagined. LANGUAGE: Different dialects (forms) of one language; one dialect chosen as the "national language". CULTURE: A shared way of life (food, dress, behavior, ideals). HISTORY: A common past, common experiences (real or imagined).

  20. Unification of Italy and Germany

    The Unification of Italy and Germany. In the 1800s, the people of Europe were energized and influenced by the ideas of Nationalism and Enlightenment. These ideas influenced many regions to revolt against the Europeans and seek their independent nations. The ideas of Nationalism and Enlightenment also coerced Italy and Germany to become unified.

  21. Unification of Italy: Causes & Summary

    Italian Unification - Key takeaways. The Kingdom of Italy was proclaimed in 1861, officially uniting the separate city-states of Italy into one central constitutional monarchy. The unification of Italy is tied to a broader movement across Europe toward liberalism, nationalism, and democracy.

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    By 1850, the unification of Italy and Germany were faced with internal and external obstacles that rendered the unifications of the two nations a failure. However, after 1850, there were changes internally and externally that favoured the unification of both nations.

  23. write a thesis statement comparing the causes of italian and german

    Have a language expert improve your writing. Run a free plagiarism check in 10 minutes, generate accurate citations for free. Knowledge Base; How to Write a Thesis Statement | 4 S