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First marshal of the empire

First Marshal of the Empire
Primo Maresciallo dell'Impero
Rank insignia of primo maresciallo dell'impero of the Italian Army (1940).png
First Marshal of the Empire sleeve rank insignia.
Country Kingdom of Italy
RankSix-star (unofficial)
NATO rank codeOF-11
Non-NATO rankO-12
Formation2 April 1938
Abolished1945
Next lower rankMarshal of Italy
Mussolini (right) in 1940; his "First Marshal of the Empire" insignia is visible at the end of his sleeve.

First Marshal of the Empire (Italian: Primo Maresciallo dell'Impero) was a military rank established by the Italian Parliament on March 30, 1938. The highest rank in the Italian military, it was only granted to King Victor Emmanuel III and Duce Benito Mussolini. The rank was abolished following World War II.

Mussolini's decision to create for himself and the King a new military rank created a crisis between himself and Victor Emmanuel III. For the first time in the history of the House of Savoy, the Prime Minister of Italy bore a rank equal with that of the head of the royal house giving him a mortgage on the high command of the Italian military, a power of the King under the provisions of Statuto Albertino.

Sources

  • Montanelli, Cervi Storia d'Italia 1935/1943

See also


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