Following some interpretation, mainly based on Margaret Thatcher’s memoirs, her relationship with Giulio Andreotti was a strained one. Actually this article, which is based on fi rst hand archival sources, off ered a by far more nuanced view of the relations between the British Prime Minister and the Italian statesman. Andreotti met the newly elected Mrs Thatcher in early 1979 when Andreotti was on the eve of leaving the role of Prime Minister and they appeared to share some common views. When Andreotti in 1983 became Foreign Minister, his contacts were mainly with various British Foreign Secretaries. Obviously, especially since the mid- 1980s some strong diff erence of opinion about the European integration began to emerge between the British Prime Minister and Andreotti. But in early 1990 Mrs Thatcher hoped that it would be possible to create a sort of alliance between Britain and Italy in order to avoid or to slow down the German reunifi cation. But Andreotti was convinced that a closer European union would be the best solution to the emergence of a reunifi ed Germany. The British Prime Minister strongly opposed such an option, but her negative remarks about Andreotti were more the consequence of her resentment at losing power rather than a thoughtful evaluation of Andreotti’s foreign policy.
Keywords: Giulio Andreotti, Margaret Thatcher, Anglo-Italian relations, European integration, Italian foreign policy, British foreign policy