Mussolini and Fascist Italy

  • Formation of an independent Italy

    Formation of an independent Italy
    In 1861, following decades of conflict with the Austrian Empire, the Risorgimento, a nationalist movement, succeeded in unifying and creating an independent Italy. This picture illustrates the formation of an independent Italy from the Kingdom of Sardinia in 1859 to the end of the Papal States in 1870.
  • Papal States taken over by new nation of Italy

    Papal States taken over by new nation of Italy
    Following France’s decision to allocate their troops and resources out of Rome, Italy annexed Rome, bringing an end to the Papal States. This picture illustrates the annexation of the Papal States before and after Italy’s unification.
  • Failure of First Italo-Ethiopian War with the Battle of Adowa (Adwa)

    Failure of First Italo-Ethiopian War with the Battle of Adowa (Adwa)
    In north-central Ethiopia, there was a clash between the Ethiopian army of Emperor Menilek II and Italian forces resulting in an Italian loss. Challenged Italy’s attempt at building an empire in Africa as it was the first European power defeat in Africa during the colonial era. This picture depicts Italian soldiers in the midst of Battle of Adowa, illustrating the chaos and loss the Italians experienced.
  • Italy invades and takes over Libya

    Italy invades and takes over Libya
    In 1911, with motivations to expand its empire and to hinder growing French influence in North Africa, Italy invaded and successfully colonized the Turkish colony of Libya. This picture depicts Italian soldiers watching corpses of Libyan and Turk defenders, emphasizing the brutality of the invasion.
  • Mussolini begins work as editor for the Socialist Party newspaper Avanti

    Mussolini begins work as editor for the Socialist Party newspaper Avanti
    After being released for antiwar activism, Mussolini began to work as an editor for the Socialist Party newspaper Avanti, publishing articles that incited revolution against the liberal party. This picture shows an Avanti article written by Mussolini, a step forward in his political aspirations.
  • Mussolini kicked out of Socialist Party for pro-nationalistic sentiments regarding WWI

    Mussolini kicked out of Socialist Party for pro-nationalistic sentiments regarding WWI
    In 1914, Mussolini was expelled from the Socialist Party due to his pro-nationalistic sentiments regarding Italian military intervention in WW1; opposing the party’s neutral position. As a result, Mussolini founded his own pro-war newspaper Il Popolo d'Italia. In this picture, Il Popolo d'Italia is shown published by Mussolini, signifying his shift in political ideologies.
  • Treaty of London

    Treaty of London
    With the promise of the Trentino, Trieste, and other contested territories, in the event of victory by Entente nations, leading liberal politicians in Italy signed the Treaty of London in May, joining WWI for the Entente powers. This picture details the promised territories to be granted to Italy with the Treaty of London.
  • Beginning of Biennio Rosso

    Beginning of Biennio Rosso
    The Biennio Rosso was a two-year period of economic and social crisis caused by the mass employment and political instability as a result of the economic aftermath of WWI. During this period, strikes as well as factory and land occupations were incited by trade unions and peasant leagues. Ended after 1920. This picture shows armed workers occupying a factory in Milan, exemplifying the period of social chaos and instability that was the Biennio Rosso.
  • Fascio de Combattimento formed in Milan

    Fascio de Combattimento formed in Milan
    The Fascio di Combattimento was an Italian Fascist organization formed by Benito Mussolini on March 23, 1919 in Milan, Italy, but was reorganized into the National Fascist Party in 1921, which fell by July 1943. It was highly appealing to war veterans across the political system. This picture is an adequate picture to symbolize the Fascio di Combattimento, as it is the symbol for the Fascio di Combattimento.
  • D’Annunzio takes Fiume

    D’Annunzio takes Fiume
    Fiume, an area on the border of Yugoslavia and Italy with a majority Italian population, was invaded by Gabriele D’Annunzio with the goal of uniting all of the people of Italy under one government, in Italy. This picture, according to, is a picture of Gabriele D’Annunzio and his supporters taking over Fiume, thus it is relevant to the term “D’Annunzio takes Fiume”
  • Mussolini forms alliance with Giolitti

    Mussolini forms alliance with Giolitti
    Giovanni Giolitti, the Prime Minister of Italy, a centrist liberal in Italy, in an attempt to stop the growth of the rapidly growing Italian Socialist Party, joined forces with Mussolini, made an alliance, and stunted the growth of the Italian Socialist Party in 1921. This picture is justifiable because, according to wikipedia, this is a picture of Giovani Giolitti, who allowed for this alliance to prosper with Mussolini.
  • Mussolini forms the PNF (Fascist Party) and is elected its leader

    Mussolini forms the PNF (Fascist Party) and is elected its leader
    The PNF, or Partito Nazionale Fascista, was the political party created by Benito Mussolini in Italy on November 9, 1921, and followed fascism as a political ideology in Italy. Benito Mussolini was elected as the first leader of the party. This picture is justifiable as the symbol on the timeline for the PNF, because it is the symbol and logo for the PNF.
  • March on Rome and Mussolini becomes Prime Minister

    March on Rome and Mussolini becomes Prime Minister
    On October 31, 1922, directly after the March on Rome from October 28-30, 1922, Benito Mussolini was appointed as the Prime Minister of Italy, when he began to consolidate the power in the government and passed the Acerbo Law. This picture is adequate because it is a picture of Mussolini directly after his appointment to office as Prime Minister, where he would begin to call himself Il Duce.
  • Acerbo Law passed

    Acerbo Law passed
    A law passed that any majority of seats in the government, whatever party got the most votes would then be awarded a ⅔ majority in government. He ensured that people of opposing views still had some feeling of power, as to not upset anyone. The law seemed fair to them. This picture is sufficient, as it includes an image of Giacomo Acerbo, who created the law that was passed by the Italian Parliament.
  • Corfu Incident

    Corfu Incident
    The Corfu Incident was both a diplomatic and militaristic incident or crisis between Greece and Italy, which lasted from August 31, 1923 to September 27, 1923. The goal was to resolve a border dispute between Greece and Albania. This picture shows two boats on the water in the Ionian Sea during the Corfu Incident. Thus, it is an accurate depiction of the Corfu Incident.
  • Matteotti Crisis

    Matteotti Crisis
    The Matteotti Crisis, on June 10, 1924, was a political confrontation involving the Fascist Italian government, following the assassination of Giacomo Matteotti. It is important to note that Giacomo Matteotti was an Italian socialist leader, and thus was highly opposed by the fascists, who held more power. This is an image of Giacomo Matteotti, prior to his assassination, and prior to the Matteotti Crisis, where he was a member of the Italian Parliament.
  • Aventine Secession

    Aventine Secession
    A mass boycott of parliament in protest of the actions of Mussolini during the Matteotti crisis intended to convince the king to remove Mussolini from power. This boycott was mainly done by socialists and was led by Giovanni Amendola. This picture shows a group of socialists going to see Matteotti’s body. This is significant in showing how Mussolini’s actions during the Matteotti crisis had a big impact on others, causing him to have increased opposition which created the Aventine Secession.
  • Battle for Grain

    Battle for Grain
    A campaign launched by Mussolini in order to make Italy more self-sufficient and less reliant on foreign powers through their production of wheat. This campaign was initially launched in response to a previous poor harvest. This picture is a piece of propaganda Mussolini used to foster support in his battle for grain. This is significant in showing the strong feelings of Mussolini towards the campaign and his desire for it to work.
  • Locarno Treaty signed

    Locarno Treaty signed
    A treaty proposed by German Foreign Minister Gustav Stresemann which made it so if the countries in the agreement violated another’s borders that neutral countries would enforce them militarily. In addition, French forces had to withdraw from Rhineland and Germany was admitted into the League of Nations. This picture shows the country’s leaders of those who signed the Locarno Treaty. This is significant in showing how it settled the previous disputes before it like the Treaty of Versailles.
  • Battle for land and Battle for the Lira

    Battle for land and Battle for the Lira
    The Battle for Land was a campaign in which Mussolini attempted to increase the amount of farmland by draining marshes and swamps. The Battle for the Lira was also a campaign but was made to artificially raise the value of Lira to restore its value abroad. This picture shows Mussolini helping drain the Pontine Marshes to gain more farmland. This is significant in showing how much he cared about the campaigns and their outcomes.
  • Battle for Births

    Battle for Births
    A campaign launched with intention to increase the Italian population in order to have a larger military force that could be used in the future. This greatly downgraded the status of women by supporting traditional gender roles. This picture shows Mussolini and his family, showing that he had a lot of children. This is significant in showing how much of a figure Mussolini was to people in his country and the importance of this battle to him.
  • Kellogg-Briand Treaty signed

    Kellogg-Briand Treaty signed
    An international pact or agreement that attempted to eliminate the use of war in a country’s national policy. This was made after the horrors of WWI in an attempt to prevent further wars like it. This picture shows a group of politicians from a wide variety of countries around US president Calvin Coolidge as he signs the Kellogg-Briand Treaty. This is significant in showing the unification that the Treaty attempted to bring between countries.
  • Lateran Treaty with Pope

    Lateran Treaty with Pope
    A treaty which settled the long conflict between Italy and the papacy by giving the papacy their own independent land to run called Vatican City. In return, the pope recognized Italy in its possession of land. This picture shows the pope and Mussolini signing the Lateran Treaty next to each other. This is significant in showing the unification of the papacy and Italy as both are seen to be on equal ground.
  • Stresa Front

    Stresa Front
    An agreement made between Italy, France, and Britain to reaffirm the Locarno Treaties and declare their support of the independence of Austria. This was made after Germany declared that it intended to build up its military forces, despite Treaty of Versailles restrictions. This picture shows the countries of Italy, France, Britain, and Germany, with Germany highlighted in a different color. This is significant in showing the focus of the treaty, which was to prevent further German aggression.
  • Abyssinian Crisis

    Abyssinian Crisis
    As Mussolini was eager to go to war by 1935, he wanted to gain raw materials for the Italian industry. Hence, Italy went after Abyssinian raw materials as it was located next to Eritrea, part of the Italian Empire. Italian troops attempted to take control of the Wal Wal fort. The picture shows Mussolini’s decision to use harsh weapons to take out civilians and take control of the Abyssinian territory. This is significant as it draws upon Mussolini’s brutal unnecessary actions.
  • Italian involvement with Spanish Civil War

    Italian involvement with Spanish Civil War
    Mussolini ordered large numbers of blackshirts to fight in Spain, reaching up to 30,000 blackshirts along with 20,000 Italian troops by February of 1937. By the end of March, the Republicans were able to force Italians to retreat. General Francisco Franco blamed Italians for the Nationalist defeat. Ended in 1939. This picture accurately represents that Italians marched to Spain as an independent army unit rather than fully cooperating with Spain during the war.
  • Rome-Berlin Axis Treaty signed

    Rome-Berlin Axis Treaty signed
    A coalition formed between Italy and Germany, informally linking the two fascist countries together. This was signed by Benito Mussolini and Adolf Hitler in Berlin. The picture shows Hitler and Mussolini together looking out into the crowd, coming from the place of signing the agreement. Significant as it shows the bonding between the two.
  • Munich Conference

    Munich Conference
    Representatives from Germany, Great Britain, France, and Italy, all sign the Munich Agreement in Munich, Germany, stating that Czechoslovakia must surrender the Sudetenland to Nazi Germany in turn for Hitler promising peace. The image is significant as it presents the four leaders sitting together in peace to sign the Munich Agreement. This is significant as it shows the union-ship between the four countries on one decision.
  • Italy invades Albania

    Italy invades Albania
    This was a brief military campaign of Italy versus the Albanian Kingdom as a result of the imperialistic policies of Benito Mussolini. It ended on April 12, 1939, when the parliament voted to exile King Zog I and unite with Italy “in personal union.” The political cartoon represents the threatening force that Italy was to Albania, forcing them to become part of the nation without much of a resistance. This is significant as it portrays how Italy was the attacker, and easily took over.
  • Italy enters WWII on side of Germany

    Italy enters WWII on side of Germany
    Benito Mussolini declares war on France and Great Britain while joining war on the side of the Axis Powers. Germany asked Italy to join in September 1939 so this was more of a hindrance as Italian troops didn’t mobilize in France until June 20th. This picture shows how troops joined the war, namely under the Nazi flag as Germany was the overpowering Axis power in the war. The significance is that it is demonstrating the power Italy united to - Germany.
  • Mussolini brought down by coup during WWII

    Mussolini brought down by coup during WWII
    Benito Mussolini is voted out by his Grand Council and is arrested when leaving a meeting with King Vittorio Emanuele. Il Duce just let this happen as everyone realized dictatorship had brought Italy to military disaster. This picture represents Mussolini’s Grand Council that eventually voted to kick him out of power, ending his term of dictatorship over Italy.
  • Mussolini killed

    Mussolini killed
    Italian partisans shot and killed Mussolini and his mistress, Clara Petacci while they were trying to escape to Austria. Their bodies were then transported by truck to Milan and hung upside down for all to see. This picture portrays Mussolini and his mistress hung upside down. The photo is significant as it portrays the brutality of the demonstration.