San Marino Brief History

By | November 1, 2021

A drive of just over 600 kilometers gave me the opportunity to visit San Marino, my 108th country, as well as visits to several fantastic world heritage sites in the Italian cities of Ferrara and Ravenna and to have the city of Rimini as my base for further exploration of other cultural heritage in the Italian province of Emilia-Romagna. In addition, I paid a short visit to the picturesque town of Comachhio on the Adriatic.

The trip went completely without mishaps, but I was involved in an unpleasant incident on the drive to Ravenna when two men stopped me and wanted to steal valuables. Read more about this further down in the travel description.

This was a journey with many interesting experiences in a short time. San Marino and Italy have a lot to offer those who are culturally or historically interested!

San Marino history in brief

According to businesscarriers, San Marino is the only remaining of the medieval small states on the Italian peninsula. According to tradition, Saint Marinus founded the country in the early 300s, after he fled to the area away from the Roman emperor’s antichristian persecution.

16th century

During this century, San Marino was ruled by the Catholic Church with the pope as supreme leader


San Marino gained local self-determination

19th century, beginning

After the conquest of the Italian peninsula by Emperor Napoleon, San Marino came under the protection of the French Republic.


The parish was restored after the fall of Napoleon. As San Marino’s status had not been addressed in the negotiations, local leaders claimed that the area was now completely independent. However, the church state wanted to maintain its sovereignty over the area. The conflict lasted until Italy was formed in 1861


San Marino signed a friendship agreement with Italy and succeeded in consolidating its independence

First and Second World War (1912 – 1918 and 1939 – 1945)

During both of these wars, San Marino was neutral. During World War II, however, the Allied forces bombed the country on a couple of occasions, which later received financial compensation for

1945 – 1957

San Marino was ruled by a left-wing coalition between Communists and Socialists

1958 – 1977

Governed coalitions with the participation of both left and right parties

1978 – 1986

A communist-led left-wing coalition came to power. The coalition was dissolved in 1986 after allegations of corruption in one of the governing parties

1986 – 1992

The country was ruled by a coalition between the Communist Party and the Christian Democrats.
The Christian Democrats, which was the leading bourgeois party, then did not want to continue cooperation with the Communists, who despite the name change to the Progressive Democratic Party were considered to represent the old kind of rigid communism that characterized the social systems in Eastern Europe which were dissolved around 1990.

San Marino Brief History