Giolitti was born in 1842 in the province of Cuneo, from a bourgeois family and died in Cavour in 1928. He completed his studies at the San Francesco institute (the current Liceo Gioberti). In 1861 at the University of Turin, at the age of nineteen, he obtained a degree in Jurisprudence. Thanks to the intervention of the uncle former deputy who is a friend of a collaborator of Cavour, interest in politics begins.
In 1862 the real political career of Giovanni Giolitti began; from the Ministry of Justice and Justice he moved to finance in 1869. Here he helped and helped the ministers, including Quintino Sella, to equalize the malmitted budgets of the state. He reached the position of head of department until 1877, when he was chosen for the Court of Auditors. In the year 1882 two important facts take place that definitively mark his career. He was appointed to the Council of State, the supreme body for juridical-administrative consultation, and was elected, in his first candidature for the role of deputy. In the course of 1886 he hired a hard fought with the government of Agostino Depretis, in relation to the investment policy of the state.
In 1889 he became Minister of the Treasury and also of Finance; these tasks were entrusted to him during the second government led by Francesco Crispi, with whom he disagreed in 1890, due to colonial policy. He resigned from both positions. In 1892 the government of the Marquis Antonio Starabba di Rudinì fell, and the Sovereign Umberto I assigned him the position to form the first of the five governments he led.
Already on December 15, 1893 the first government of Giovanni Giolitti is in crisis and falls. The causes are the protests of the wealthiest for its lax policy in favor of the least acted classes, the crack of the Banca Romana and the breezy project to introduce new taxes that weigh on the more affluent.
From 1893 to 1901 he is in opposition. On February 15, 1901 Giolitti is one of the major proponents of the fall of the government of the lawyer Giuseppe Saracco, which is characterized by a policy of repression like all other governments after his. From 1901 to 1903 he holds the post of Minister of the Interior of the Government of the now elderly Giuseppe Zanardelli, of which he is one of the most valuable collaborators and "suggestors".
In November 1903, and more precisely on day 3, he is again head of the Government: Giolitti adopts a cohesion policy of the left, seeks the collaboration of the Socialist Filippo Turati and represses the reactionary winds, also accepting the collaboration of the constituent union organs, and sometimes justifies the strikes; substantially adopts the tactics of dialogue with the counterparts.
Despite the conservatives calling him a revolutionary, during the course of his government important laws of protection for workers are passed; on April 22, 1905, the State Railways were created and large public works were launched.
After minor falls of government and changes of direction, due to small political reshuffles, on 29 May 1906, Giovanni Giolitti was commissioned to form his third government. Thanks to financial consolidation measures during this term, the public budget is cured and enriched, the nationalization of the SFs is completed and the foundations are laid for nationalizing the insurance companies. New important laws for child labor and for the social condition of the female working population are also given. Special laws are promulgated to protect a noon that was struck in 1808 by a major earthquake in Sicily, for which the government of Giolitti and the state take charge in a very exceptional.
In the 1909 elections, Giovanni Giolitti is always the winner but for a formal defect he prefers to stay on the edge of the action. However, some of his loyalists follow him, including Luigi Luzzatti and Sidney Sonnino. It is during these Legislatures that both the Government and directly Giolitti express themselves in favor of the idea of universal suffrage, which however is to the advantage of the mass parties, among which the fascist party which favors them most, misrepresenting the initial idea of giolittiana imprint.
On March 30, 1911, the statesman was appointed to form his fourth government. INA is born and the universal suffrage project is completed. In September 1911, perhaps to satisfy the opposition, the Government of Italy undertook a new colonial war in Libya. Thanks to this maneuver, and perhaps to others concerning the introduction of an allowance for deputies, the idea of a collaboration with the Socialists who now have a new leader vanishes: Benito Mussolini.
In October 1913, when the polling stations were reopened, there was an evident drop in the Giolittiana majority. After some legislative failures on March 21, 1914, Giovanni Giolitti is forced to resign. From the historical point of view ends that period defined as "Giolitti age", which goes from 1901 to 1914.
At the outbreak of the First World War, the statesman is not in government, he does everything to influence him. It must maintain a neutral position with respect to the aggressive positions of the other members of the triple alliance. The government is divided between interventionists and neutralists, and thanks to a series of "Giolittiani" political measures on May 24 of the same year, the Italian state is at war with Austria, which is in theory its ally. Giolitti is indicated as a traitor to national thought by the opposition.
On June 15, 1920 the statesman begins what is recognized as his fifth government. The policy adopted against social unrest is the same as that of previous governments. The strong post-war crisis creates new contrasts between the various social classes; the fascists of Benito Mussolini emerge. The question of the liberation of the city of Fiume that emerged during the First World War ended definitively. Some Giolittiani amendments indissolubly deteriorate relations between the statesman and the monarchy.
July 4, 1921 is the date of the last day of Giolitti as head of the Italian Government. He retires in that of Cavour, a town in the province of Turin, during the rise of fascism. Many of his faithful followers want him back to Rome to defend the ideas to free them from him.
Beginning in 1925, thanks also to the "disappearance" of Giacomo Matteotti on 10 June 1924, he progressively emerged from political life, still siding against the fascist neo-government.
Giovanni Giolitti dies at his home in Cavour on the night of 17 July 1928, at the age of 86.