- Point of Interest
- Viale Pasteur, 1, 00144 Roma RM, Italy
The EUR district, southern of Rome, is one of the biggest examples of fascist urban planning and architecture in Italy. Mussolini planned to build a new Rome looking towards the future, and the EUR district represents the legacy of the fascist rationalist architecture.
EUR was designed in the second half of the 1930s for an exposition that had to celebrate the twentieth anniversary of the March on Rome and of the fascist rule. Originally known as E42, its name was changed into EUR, acronym for Rome Universal Exposition (Esposizione Universale di Roma). Due to the outbreak of the Second World War, the exposition, that was to begin in 1942, never took place and the original planning was never completed.
The district is inspired by classic Roman city planning, with some elements of Italian rationalism. The planning includes a large road system and towering, massive and squared buildings, mostly made of marble and travertine to resemble temples and buildings of the Roman age. The symbolic building of this architecture model is the so-called Squared Colosseum, a nickname for the Palace of Italian Civilisation, inspired by metaphysical art.
The region of Lazio in central Italy was the scene of heavy fighting during WWII: here the battles of Monte Cassino and Anzio were fought before the Allies could capture the capital of Rome. Recall the landings of Anzio and
Recall the course of the Italian Campaign of WWII while exploring a country immensely rich in culture and history. Start your journey in Sicily, where the first Allied landings occurred in July 1943. Then walk through war cemeteries in Catania
Rome was the first capital to be liberated from Nazi German occupation on 4 June 1944. Rome had been declared an open city which meant that it could be captured without any fighting. This was a welcome relieve after the heavy fought campaign of Cassino.
The war cemetery in Rome was built after the entry of the Allied force into Rome in June 1944. It contains 426 Commonwealth graves from the Second World War. An inscription recalls the period of the war and commemorates the
In October 1943, the Nazis deported over 1.000 Jews from the former Jewish Ghetto in Rome. The Roman Ghetto had a long history that stretched back for many centuries.
On 24 March 1944 German forces executed 335 Italian prisoners in the Ardeatine Caves (Fosse Ardeatine) just outside of Rome. The executions were an act of reprisal for an attack on German forces
which took place in Via Rasella, in Rome. None of the people executed were involved in the attack.
In the Lateran Palace, in Rome, many Italian antifascists and politicians found shelter between 1943 and 1944. After the liberation, many of these wrote the new Italian Constitution and they subsequently governed the country.
Venice Palace (Palazzo Venezia), in Rome, was the headquarters of the fascist government. Mussolini used its Globe Room (Sala del Mappamondo) as his personal office. From its balcony, Mussolini used to harangue the crowds on the most important occasions, such as 10 June 1940, when fascist Italy decided to enter the war.
The Wedekind Palace (Palazzo Wedekind) on the Colonna Square (Piazza Colonna) in Rome was the headquarters of the National Fascist Party during the period of Fascist rule in Italy. After Italy’s capitulation came the Nazi occupation during which many Italian fascists reappeared on the scene again centering around the Palazzo.
The city of Rome survived the German occupation in an atmosphere of terror, deprivation, and cold. People began to raid bakeries and delivery trucks carrying bread for the German military. The reprisal was quick: ten women were shot at the guardrail of the Ponte di ferro (Iron Bridge), also known as Ponte dell’industria (Industry Bridge).
In the aftermath of the capitulation of Italy, on 8 September 1943, Rome was left alone; the army and dozens of civilians tried to resist the German attack on Rome at Porta San Paolo, to no avail. The Germans eventually occupied the city.
One of the crucial moments for Italian history is 19 July 1943, when the Allies bombed the San Lorenzo district, speeding up the fall of Mussolini, who a week later was defeated after a vote of no-confidence by the Great Council of Fascism and arrested.
On 23 March 1944, in Via Rasella, in the centre of Rome, a bomb by GAP (Patriotic Action Group) partisans killed 33 Nazis. As a reprisal, the German command ordered the shooting of ten Italians for every German killed.