Political map of Europe & the Mediterranean 17 March 1861 (Kingdom of Italy): The conquest of the Two Sicilies (Expedition of the Thousand) left the Kingdom of Sardinia (Kingdom of Sardinia) in control of the entire Italian peninsula except for the French-garrisoned Papal States and the Austrian controlled northeast. On March 17 the Kingdom of Italy (Kingdom of Italy) was proclaimed, with the former Victor Emmanuel of Sardinia (Victor Emmanuel II of Italy) as its ruler.