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Contributing to ongoing debates on the ethical and transnational aspects of Victorian cosmopolitanism, the present article examines the response to the struggle for Italian Unification, better known as the Risorgimento, in the work of Anthony Trollope. The Italian question is a hidden presence in particular novels, and three of Trollope's short stories address it directly. A cross-section of these narratives reveals that Trollope tends to couch this subject in the form of two genres, comedy and naturalism. I would suggest that this peculiarity can be traced to Trollope's concern with liberal foreign policy as pursued by Lord Palmerston and William Ewert-Gladstone, and with the repercussions that their foreign policy had on claims for Irish independence.