Word Origin & History
1921, from It. partito nazionale fascista, the anti-communist political movement organized 1919 under Benito Mussolini (1883-1945); from It. fascio "group, association," lit. "bundle." Like fascism, originally used in English in its Italian form, as an Italian word. [Fowler: "Whether this full anglicization
of the words is worth while cannot be decided till we know whether the things are to be temporary or permanent in England" -- probably an addition to the 1930 reprint, retained in 1944 U.S. edition.] Fasci "groups of men organized for political purposes" had been a feature of Sicily since c.1895; the 20c. sense probably influenced by the Roman fasces
(q.v.) which became the party symbol. Related: Fascistic.