Original Italian WWII Fascist Youth GIL Cadet Dagger with Black Grip and Scabbard
Original Item: Only One Available. Here we have a World War II Italian Fascist Youth Dagger Knife, produced for G.I.L. cadets. This is the standard black handle model worn by regular members, as opposed to officers and instructors. It comes complete with the original blued steel scabbard with an integral belt loop that keeps the dagger at a nice angle for wearing on the left hip.
The dagger features a gilded brass hilt with eagle head and capstan. The black lacquered grip is in excellent condition with with all of the original brass wire present. Measures 11" overall with 6 3/8" nickel-plated steel spear point blade. Condition of is very good, with some oxidation and plating wear on the blade, as shown.
A very nice example of an rare dagger!
Blade length: 6 3/8”
Blade Style: Spear Point Knife
Overall length: 11”
Crossguard: 2 7/8”
Scabbard length: 7 1/2"
The Gioventù Italiana del Littorio (GIL) (English: Italian Youth of the Lictor) was the consolidated youth movement of the National Fascist Party of Italy that was established in 1937 to replace the Opera NSDAPonale Balilla (ONB). It was created to supervise and influence the minds of all youths, that was effectively directed against the influence of the Catholic Church on youths.
The organization surpassed its purpose as a cultural institution that was intended to serve as the ideological counterpart of school, and served as a paramilitary group (training for future assignments in the Italian Army), as well as education in the career of choice, technology (including postschool courses for legal adults), or education related to home and family (solely for the girls). It carried out indoctrination with a message of Italian-ness and Fascism, training youths as "the fascists of tomorrow".
Moreover, the GIL took charge of all activities initiated by schools, and pressured teachers to enlist all students. Aside from the usual "Fascist Saturdays", children would spend their summers in camps (which included the national-level Campi Dux, reunions of Balilla and Avanguardisti).
Male children enrolled wore a uniform adapted from that of the Blackshirts: the eponymous black shirt, the fez of Arditi tradition, grey-green trousers, black fasces emblems, and azure handkerchiefs (i.e.: in the national color of Italy). During military exercises, they were armed with scaled-down version of Royal Italian Army service rifle, Moschetto Balilla (the rifles were replaced with replica versions for the Figli della Lupa).
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