For most dictators fame is but fleeting. This is especially true for those deposed by military action. Usually the first thing that the populace does when freed is pull down all the statues.
Fascism being particularly out of vogue these days I did not expect to find much in Italy to remember Benito Mussolini. I was wrong.
The biggest surviving monument is at the Foro Italia, which under the Previous Management had been called the Foro Mussolini. Here's a modern obelisk engraved Mussolini Dux.
Dux, or Duce as it was often said, was another attempt by Mussolini to recapture the Glories of Rome in the modern era. It was a title going back to Republican days that meant "leader of troops". In the latter Empire it became formalized in variations such as "Dux Brittanica", the Duke of Britain, indicating the commander of troops in that province.
The Foro Mussolini was primarily a sports complex. It was begun with the hopes that Rome would get the Olympics in 1944. Deteriorating political conditions caused Rome to lose out in the voting in 1939. Hmmm, what is it with Sports and Authoritarian Regimes? Berlin 1936. The cancelled Tokyo 1940 Games, along with with Rome's near miss....
By the way, it is known that under the obelisk is a time capsule. It contains a few gold coins, a medallion showing Mussolini wearing a lion skin reminiscent of Hercules, and a 1200 word manuscript in Latin extolling Mussolini, the Fascist movement generally and the construction of the sports complex specifically.
Here's an odd building. It was along one of the bus routes we traveled. It seemed to have active young people generally around it so I started calling it "Fascist High". The text translates roughly to: "If Victory is Necessary then Battle is Necessary".
Because I actually do a little research after arriving home I can report that this is not a school but another sports complex. The message while not specifically political does have a bit of the old goose step about it.
Now imagine my surprise when I saw this:
Near the river Tiber, not far from the famous Boca Veritas we find a substantial public building with a surviving dedication to Benito Mussolini Duce. The next line appears to memorialize somebody named Petrus Colunna as "Praf Ubs" I assume this means Prefect of the City. (Odd spelling aside this is certainly a reference to Piero Colonna, twice Mayor of Rome and once Governor of same (1936-1939)
It looks to me as if everything else has been removed in a sort of modern "damnatio memoria" but this part is nice and clean as if it has been until recently covered up by some other signage. Rome being Rome it will likely be years before anybody does anything about this.
The building is on the busy Via Luigi Petroselli. It is still the Town Hall for the Municipio of Central Rome, i.e. the historic central city.
If brutal cement dystopias are your thing - and hey, I'm not here to judge - the EUR center is the place to go. I did not make it out there but one of our fellow travelers did and has some swell photos of same including a depiction of Mussolini in a modern version of Trajan's column. Go visit MooseandHobbes.