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The aim was to serve the ambitions of the regime by politicising the memory of the dead.
Designed by architects sympathetic to the regime, the ossuaries were built along former front lines in north-eastern Italy, and under the patronage of a special commission of the Ministry of War (now the Ministry of Defence).
During the First World War, over 600,000 Italian soldiers died in a relatively small geographical area that stretched across the regions of Trentino, Friuli and Veneto, and into what is now Slovenia.
Originally, those who fell in battle were buried in makeshift graves, as burials took place amidst the chaos of war.
Certainly, the study of war monuments benefits from a "layered" approach that addresses their significance on different levels, which may range from the meanings drawn by individuals and families, to those generated at local, national and international levels.
Hence, the creation of the ossuaries can be examined in a way that contributes to an understanding of the wider political context, in which it illustrates the value of war cemeteries as sources of political history, and to recent cultural approaches to the memory of the First World War.
 In that this paper examines the architecture of the ossuaries with a view to uncovering the political forces behind their construction, it addresses the relationship between aesthetics and meaning, or how aesthetic characteristics, such as form, scale, proportion, texture and composition, were bound together to express meanings that were central to Fascist ideology.
 The aesthetic characteristics of the ossuaries can be analysed under the three headings of space, context and style.
As argued below, the spatial structures of the ossuaries can be seen as concrete manifestations of Fascist ideals of a society and its social hierarchy, and of symbolic meanings that stemmed from the conditions under which those spatial structures were created.
Their construction was essential to a campaign that involved the demolition of existing military cemeteries and the repression of local initiatives to commemorate the fallen.