Route 4

The 19th century and Antonelli

After a brief period under Austrian rule (1714), Novara and its surrounding area were annexed to the Kingdom of Sardinia at the end of the Wars of Succession (1748).

The House of Savoy was thus able to secure its eastern border along the Ticino.

During the Napoleonic period, the city became the capital of the Department of Agogna, due to its strategic and economic importance.

Returning to Savoy control with the Restoration, Novara underwent a vast programme of infrastructure development and renewal of military building works.

It was the kingdom’s spearhead in the Risorgimento campaigns against Austrian Lombardy-Veneto, and the site of Charles Albert’s abdication in favour of Victor Emmanuel II following the defeat of 23 March 1849 (First Italian War of Independence).

In the second half of the century, works by Alessandro Antonelli and other architects and urban planners gave the city an elegant 19th-century appearance, which still characterises the historical centre.