Born on July 29, 1883 to a father who was a blacksmith and a religious mother. Benito Mussolini grew up rather humble but, during his school years he had been expelled for acts of violence against other students. His father was a socialist and he decided to follow in his footsteps. Mussolini travels through Switzerland and takes part in their Socialist party.

Childhood Home of Benito | Source: Wikipedia

He eventually gets a position as an editor at a Socialist newspaper. However for inciting violence through his work he served time in jail. He disassociated himself with the Socialist Party, went independent and  eventually joined the Italian army in 1915 and saw battle during WWI. After his return from the war he started advocating for drastic change in Italian politics and an overthrow of the current government. He saw allies in the fascist groups of Italy and aligned himself with them. He ran in the general elections as a representative of the Italian Fascist Party but, lost out to the Socialists.

Benitos Prison Arrest File | Source: Biographics

Mussolini’s Rise to Power

Amid growing chaos in the country the then leader King Victor Emmanuel III dissolved the parliament and that led to a new round of elections. These new elections brought new found success to Mussolini as he now became a deputy in parliament. 1922 initiated the take over of Italian cities by force. Then ruler King Victor Emmanuel III was too slow to take action and eventually asked Mussolini to form a new government. Mussolini became Prime Minister, as well as holding other significant roles. Then on January 3, 1925 he eventually spoke to parliament and pretty much declared himself as dictator of Italy. Afterwards persecution of political rivals (communists, socialists) started. He put Italian society in a chokehold and criticism of the government was prohibited and people were flooded with propaganda.

Portrait of Mussolini | Source: Wikipedia

At first Mussolini did not embrace Hitler and his views but, both would partner up and unleash havoc on Europe. Mussolini also started to create antisemitic laws in the style of Germany. He would also show solidarity during Hitlers invasions of neighboring countries. On May 22, 1939 and alliance between Germany and Italy is officially signed. It carries the nickname the pact of steel. In 1940 Mussolini announced that Italy was joining Germanys wars. He then declared war on Britain and France.

Galeazzo Ciano, Adolf Hitler and Joachim von Ribbentrop at the signing of the Pact of Steel in Berlin | Source: Wikipedia

Removal From Power

After years of war the citizens of Italy could tell that losing was inevitable. In 1943 his government votes him out of power and place him in prison. After the removal of Mussolini, Italy holds secret talks about surrender and peace with the allied powers. After Hitler gets news of their surrender he invades Italy to prevent the allied powers from advancing. Germany occupies the North and even puts Mussolini as the leader of the North Italy. The allied forces advance through Italy and in 1945 Mussolini tries to flee to Spain but, is captured and killed. Its unclear of how exactly he met his fate.

Currency From the Era of Mussolini

Benito Mussolini: Dictator Of Italy Album | Source: Banknote World

This Benito Mussolini: Dictator of Italy Album contains Italy 1 lire stainless steel coin, Italy 50 centissimi stainless steel coin, Albania 10 lek brass coin, and two Albania 20-lek steel coins issued in Italy and Albania during Mussolini’s regime. It also includes two Greece 1,000 drachmai banknotes issued in Greece at the time of war with Mussolini’s troops. This Pact of Steel: Hitler & Mussolini 6-Piece Album comes with a Nazi 10 Reichspfennig coin that reflects a swastika, an Italian lira coin that shows an eagle, and four stamps featuring Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini. These were all released by the German and Italian governments during World War II. This album includes a Certificate of Authenticity.

Pact of Steel: Hitler & Mussolini 6-Piece Album | Source: Banknote World

***Information presented in this blog is only for educational purposes.


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