Luzzatti, Luigi

   Born in Venice, Luigi Luzzatti was a long-serving politician in prefascist Italy. After an early career in academic law he entered Parliamentin 1871, where he remained until 1921. A moderate conservative, he was minister for the treasury under Antonio Starabba Di Rudini,Giovanni Giolitti,and, briefly, Sidney Sonnino.
   Luzzatti was caretaker prime minister between 1910 and 1911. His spell as prime minister was dominated by the question of extending the suffrage. Luzzatti proposed to reduce the severity of the norms for ascertaining electors’ educational standards, to introduce nationwide state elementary education, and to introduce election for a part of the Senate. In addition, he proposed making the vote a compulsory duty. These proposals initially won him widespread parliamentary support (his government was backed by 386 deputies, including the Partito Socialista Italiano/Italian Socialist Party [PSI]), but, by December 1910, the PSI and radicals in the Parliament had decided that these proposals did not go far enough. His government fell over the electoral reform issue in March 1912, and he was replaced by Giolitti, who introduced universal male suffrage. Nominated to the Senate in 1921, Luzzatti died in Rome in 1927. His memoirs are a source of great importance for historians.

Historical Dictionary of Modern Italy. . 2007.

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