Mussolini: The Rise and Fall of Il Duce

Mussolini: The Rise and Fall of Il Duce


By (author) Christopher Hibbert

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  • Publisher: Palgrave MacMillan
  • Format: Paperback | 400 pages
  • Dimensions: 146mm x 220mm x 28mm | 620g
  • Publication date: 29 August 2008
  • Publication City/Country: Basingstoke
  • ISBN 10: 0230606059
  • ISBN 13: 9780230606050
  • Illustrations note:
  • Sales rank: 395,719

Product description

With his signature insight and compelling style, Christopher Hibbert explains the extraordinary complexities and contradictions that characterized Benito Mussolini. Mussolini was born on a Sunday afternoon in 1883 in a village in central Italy. On a Saturday afternoon in 1945 he was shot by Communist partisans on the shores of Lake Como. In the sixty-two years in between those two fateful afternoons Mussolini lived one of the most dramatic lives in modern history. Hibbert traces Mussolini's unstoppable rise to power and details the nuances of his facist ideology. This book examines Mussolini's legacy and reveals why he continues to be both revered and reviled by the Italian people.

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Author information

CHRISTOPHER HIBBERT, "a pearl of biographers" (New Statesman), is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and the author of many highly acclaimed books, including Disraeli, Edward VII, George VI, The Rise and Fall of the House of Medici, and Cavaliers and Roundheads. He lives in Henley-on-Thames, England.

Review quote

"Christopher Hibbert is a wonderful narrative historian who has illuminated many corners of Italian life and history. He has the gift of creating scenes and characters, of rendering the vividness of the past. His ""Mussolini"" is no exception. He manages to convey both the charisma and ""dilettantismo"" of Mussolini the revolutionary leader as well as the later folly of "Il Duce", the dictator who began increasingly to believe his own rhetoric -- ''Mussolini is always right' -- in leading his country into World War and ruin." --Alexander Stille, award-winning author of ""Benevolence and Betrayal: Five Italian-Jewish Families Under Fascism"", and of ""The Sack of Rome: Media + Money + Celebrity = Power = Silvio Berlusconi"" Praise for Christopher Hibbert: "Hibbert is a remarkably prolific popular historian, who can take on almost anything, from Dickens to General Wolfe, from Agincourt to Garibaldi." - "The Observer""An excellent account...balanced and perceptive in outlook...well-written and entertaining."--"Economist" "[Hibbert] is a superbly skillful historical writer."--"The Spectator""" "An adroitly written evocation of a compelling but enigmatic personality, a man whose ambition, idealism and opportunism would not seem out of place on the political scene today."--"Publishers Weekly "on" Disraeli" "Hibbert's lively and engaging portrait of Benjamin Disraeli joins the author's numerous other well-received, popular biographies...A supremely readable and enjoyable study of a colorful, often astonishing and modern character."--"Library Journal "on" Disraeli"

Table of contents

Preface Family Tree Showing Mussolini's Ancestry and Descendants PART I: THE FIGHT FOR POWER The Young Rebel July 29, 1883-December 1912 The Interventionist October 1913--May 1915 The Fascist in the Making August 1915--October 28, 1922 The Head of the Government October 28, 1922--June 13, 1924 The Dictator June 13, 1924--June 10, 1940 PART II: EMPIRE AND AXIS The Diplomat October 28, 1922-June 10, 1940 The Commander-in-Chief June 10, 1940--October 23, 1942 PART III: THE FALL OF THE COLOSSUS 'The War is Going Badly' October 23, 1942--January 23, 1943 The Conspirators November 1942--July 24, 1943 The Grand Council Meeting July 24-25, 1943 The Rest at Villa Savoia July 25, 1943 The Prisoner July 25, 1943--August 28, 1943 On the Gran Sasso August 28, 1943--September 12, 1943 The Rescue from Gran Sasso September 12, 1943 The Meeting at the Fuhrer's Headquarters September 15, 1943 The President at Gargnano-- The First Year September 27, 1943--September 27, 1944 The Civil War November 1943--December 1944 The President at Gargnano-- The Final Months December 1944--April 1945 The Germans Surrender February--April 1945 The Move to Milan April 19-25, 1945 The Flight from Milan April 25-27, 1945 The Capture April 27, 1945 'Colonel Valerio' April 27-28, 1945 Death at Villa Belmonte April 28, 1945 The Piazzale Loreto April 29, 1945 Notes on Sources Bibliography Index