A good quote from the marginal revolution blog on the subject of driving conventions:
3. A 1903 Baedeker Guide wrote the following:"The rule of the road varies in different parts of Italy. In Rome and its vicinity the rule is the same as in England i.e. keep to the left in meeting, to the right in overtaking vehicles. In most other districts, however, this rule is reversed."
I would add to this that all Italian drivers from 1903 are now dead as far as I know. Coincidence?