On April 25, most everything closes in Italy and Italians gather in the piazze to celebrate one of their more beloved holidays, la Festa della Liberazione, or Liberation Day.
Liberation Day honors the Italian Resistance, the fallen partisans who fought against the fascist regime as well as the Nazi occupation during the Second World War. The Italian Resistance was composed of independent soldiers, many of whom took to guerrilla warfare. About 35,000 of those who fought were women.
In just about every Italian town on this day, you’re likely to hear rousing renditions of “Bella Ciao,” the simple folksong that tells the story of the partisan who died for freedom, asking only to be buried in the mountains under the shade of a beautiful flower.
Listen to Bella Ciao here.