Nationalism can be defined as the desire to be free from foreign rule or occupation. European nationalism was a manifestation of the political will of the Europeans to free themselves from foreign domination and oppression.
Nationalism in various European countries aimed at uniting the nations and liberates them from foreign control; this is what led to the German and Italian unification. There are various factors which contributed to rise of European Nationalism, these includes;
(a) Development of monopoly capitalism; Due to the demands of monopoly capitalism, there was a need to protect home markets but this meant unification which had to be achieved by getting rid of colonial rule.
(b) Dislike of foreign rule; The major goal of nationalism was to unite the nations and free those from foreign rule or dominations, this goal led to the German and Italian unification that were protesting against French occupation.
(c) Education; Education exposed the evils of colonial rule, hence stimulating nationalistic sentiments (feelings). Education made it possible for people to speak the same language, hence cultivating a strong sense of unity which facilitated the development of a main state.
(d) Improved communication; The improvement of communication made it possible for people to travel from one place to another which cultivated a sense of unity that contributed to the rise of European nationalism.