This essay deals with the crisis of the democratic forces in Italy during the biennium 1924- 1925, when Mussolini’s dictatorship was nearing completion. Fulcrum of the analysis the discussion occurred at the time between two democrat exponents, Silvio Trentin and Ivanoe Bonomi, as witnessed by the letters of the former to the latter, here below published for the first time (see Appendix). While in February 1924 Trentin appears to move in the orbit of Bonomi for a sort of ideological affinity, twelve months later - having the assassination of Matteotti and the Aventino behind his back - he has become a strenuous supporter of Giovanni Amendola, of whom, unlike Bonomi, embraces the project of uniting all the democratic forces by transforming their loose association (the Unione nazionale) in a veritable political party. From the examination of Trentin’s letters one can draw a significative spectrum of the courses tried by democrat exponents of dissimilar outlooks in order to face up the political cataclysm represented by the rise of Fascism.
Keywords: Silvio Trentin, Ivanoe Bonomi, Giovanni Amendola, Fascism, anti-Fascism, Unione nazionale