Kingdom of Italy (1861–1946)
The Kingdom of Italy was a state forged in 1861 by the unification of Italy under the influence of the Kingdom of Sardinia, which was its legal predecessor state...
. It was established as a service independent of the Royal Italian Army from 1923 until 1946. In 1946, the monarchy was abolished and the Kingdom of Italy became the Italian Republic
Italy , officially the Italian Republic languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Italy's official name is as follows:;;;;;;;;), is a unitary parliamentary republic in South-Central Europe. To the north it borders France, Switzerland, Austria and...
, whereupon the name of the air force changed to Aeronautica Militare Italiana.
At the beginning of the twentieth century, Italy was at the forefront of aerial warfare: during the colonization of Libya
Libya is an African country in the Maghreb region of North Africa bordered by the Mediterranean Sea to the north, Egypt to the east, Sudan to the southeast, Chad and Niger to the south, and Algeria and Tunisia to the west....
in 1911, it made the first reconnaissance flight in history on 23 October, and the first ever bombing raid on 1 November.
During World War I
World War I
World War I , which was predominantly called the World War or the Great War from its occurrence until 1939, and the First World War or World War I thereafter, was a major war centred in Europe that began on 28 July 1914 and lasted until 11 November 1918...
, the Italian Corpo Aeronautico Militare, then still part of the Regio Esercito (Royal Army), operated a mix of French fighters and locally-built bombers, notably the gigantic Caproni
thumb|right|300px|[[Caproni Ca.316]] seaplane at its moorings.Caproni was an Italian aircraft manufacturer founded in 1908 by Giovanni Battista "Gianni" Caproni....