Help wanted identifying this Italian WWII dagger
I have a question about a dagger I came across while assessing the private WWII collection that two friends of my recently inherited.
Over the past 60 years or so, their father has built up and restored an interesting collection of WWII vehicles, weapons and equipment. Some of the it quite unique like the original Packard 1942 that Eisenhower used during the first 2 months of the ETO campaign and the original Jeep Gen. Gavin used during operation Market garden. Since his (and my friends') expertise are all about the "rolling part" of the collection, they asked me to take care of the equipment and weapons, both in very often a neglected state. It is here that I came across this dagger. After careful but thorough cleaning this it what it looks like:
Not a newbie when it comes to the US and German military of that era but my knowledge of WWII Italian forces is close to zero. The casted loop on the scabbard would suggest this being a dress dagger (?). Would anybody be able to help identifying this piece in general? Any information is greatly appreciated !
The grips revealed some interesting markings to identify. It is clear that the previous owner did some creative engraving to the aluminum grip:
It reads "Roma" and "CR" on the grip. Closest to the finial it is marked "1941 XIX".
I could only make out an engravement of the palm tree here.
The "XIX" marks the so-called "Era fascista" or fascist era used between 1922-1945. The rest of the markings is where my wild guessing starts...
The "Roma" text, could it refer to an Italian division bearing that name?
As for the mark "CR": could it be the unit the owner belonged to was stationed on the island of Crete perhaps? Especially since he marked "1941" and created a palm tree ...Or may it refer to the first part of a facsist slogan "Credere, obbedire, combattere" (believe, obey, fight)?
05-02-2012 06:45 AM
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