BELLA CIAO: Italian Resistance Song

“Bella ciao” is an Italian protest folk song from the late 19th century, originally sung by the mondina workers in protest against the harsh working conditions in the paddy fields of Northern Italy.

It is generally accepted that the song was modified and adopted as an anthem of the Italian resistance movement by the partisans who opposed nazism and fascism, and fought against the occupying forces of Nazi Germany, who were allied with the fascist and collaborationist Italian Social Republic between 1943 and 1945. However, some historians argue that there is little to no evidence that Italian partisans actually sang the song.

Versions of “Bella ciao” continue to be sung worldwide as a hymn of freedom and resistance.

O bella ciao, bella ciao, bella ciao ciao ciao
Una mattina mi sono alzato
E ho trovato l’invasor

O partigiano portami via
O bella ciao, bella ciao, bella ciao ciao ciao
O partigiano portami via
Che mi sento di morir, ir, ir-

O partigiano
Morir, ir, ir
Morir-ir
Morir-ir
O bella ciao, bella ciao, bella ciao ciao ciao
O partigiano, giano -ir
O partigiano, giano -ir
Morir, Morir
Bella ciao, bella ciao, bella ciao ciao ciao

O partigiano
O bella ciao, bella ciao, bella ciao ciao ciao
E se muoio da partigiano
Tu mi devi seppellir
E seppellire lassù in montagna
O bella ciao, bella ciao, bella ciao ciao ciao
E seppellire lassù in montagna
Sotto l’ombra di un bel fior, fior, fior

O partigiano
-Ir, morir, morir, morir
Bella ciao, bella ciao, bella ciao ciao ciao
O partigiano, giano -ir
O partigiano, giano -ir
Bella ciao, bella ciao, bella ciao ciao ciao