Product Description: This Italian Youth Fascist Dagger is a nice piece, showing signs of period wear and use. The steel blade is clean, with scattered marks and some evidence of having been sharpened during the period. The wooden grip is complete, with no damage, and retains most of the original factory applied black paint finish. The grip wire is tight and intact. The gilded hilt and intricately detailed eagle’s head pommel retain approximately 80% of the original, attractive gold finish, with some copper-colored base metal showing through at the high points. The leather scabbard retains nearly all of the original surface, with strong original color. The attachment loops on the scabbard as well as a small part of the scabbard tip are missing. This Italian Youth Fascist Dagger is a fine example. The condition is a strong very good.
Historical Description: The first Italian youth Fascist organizations were formed in 1919 and 1922. The Opera Nazionale Balilla (ONB), was formed in 1926. Originally a volunteer organization, it was eventually made compulsory for boys aged 6 to 18, and girls aged 8 to 14. Young men and women aged 18 to 21 would join additional organizations of the ONB, and there was a preschool program for children younger than 6. A paramilitary organization, it was tasked with indoctrinating young people as well as educating them. Male members of the ONB wore a uniform that was based on that of the Fascist Blackshirts. In 1937, the ONB was rolled into the consolidated Fascist youth movement, the Gioventù Italiana del Littorio (GIL). At the outbreak of WWII, male GIL members over the age of 18 were called up to serve in the military. Later, youth organization members as young as 16 were drafted. The uniforms and regalia of the Italian fascist youth movement are sought-after historical items.
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