When the World War broke out his attitude was favourable to the absolute neutrality of Italy, believing that his country's interests lay in not siding with either group of belligerents, and on the eve of Italian intervention he made an attempt, by using his personal hold over the Parliamentary majority, to upset the Salandra Cabinet, but it was frustrated by an uprising of public opinion in favour of war.
Their original centre was Rome, but in view of the hostile attitude of the Salandra-Sonnino Government they transferred their activities to Paris and London early in 1915.
Salandra, at the latter's urgent request, and was soon faced by the responsibilities arising out of the outbreak of the World War.
He was Minister of Education in the Giolitti-Tittoni Cabinet of 1903-5, and of Justice in the Giolitti Cabinet of 1907-9, and again under Salandra in March 1914.
On the resignation of the Salandra Cabinet in July 1916 he remained in office under Boselli as Minister of the Interior.
"ANTONIO SALANDRA (1853-), Italian statesman, was born at Troia in 1853.
When the latter became Treasury Minister in the Crispi Cabinet of 1893, Salandra was chosen under-secretary in that department.
Salandra was called upon to form the new Cabinet, and he was Premier when the World War broke out in Aug.
It was the Salandra Cabinet which took the momentous decision of bringing Italy into the World War on the side of the Allies, and it conducted the Government of the country during the first months of the campaign more successfully than any of the succeeding war Cabinets.