Third Independence War – 1866


« It’s not possible deny the enemy the testimony of having fought with tenacity and value. His early attacks were especially vigorous, and the officers, rushing forward, gave the example. »

The battle of Custoza took place between 24 and 25 June 1866 during the third war of independence. The troops of the newly born kingdom of Italy led by Alfonso La Marmora clashed with those of the Austrian Empire commanded by Archduke Albert of Habsburg. The battle of Custoza led to the annexation of Veneto to the Kingdom of Italy.

Prussia attacked Austria on the 15 June 1866, as envisaged by the Italian-Prussian alliance treaty of April 1866, Italy declared war on Austria. However, after crossing the border, part of the Italian army was defeated in the battle of Custoza.

The fate of the war now seemed imperatively compromised in fact, despite the victories of Giuseppe Garibaldi in Tyrol, the defeat of Custoza was followed by another defeat for Italy in the naval battle of Lissa.

At the end of the war, thanks to the agreements made previously, the victory of Prussia on the northern front and the diplomatic intervention of France, Austria had to cede the Veneto to the Kingdom of Italy. However, it did not succeed in annexing territories in southern Tyrol, although they were conquered militarily.