Written in Latin on parchment Benito Mussolini's 'message to the future' is buried along with gold coins.
Researchers have uncovered Italian dictator Benito Mussolini's 'message to the future' - a text hidden underneath a 300-tonne obelisk in Rome that throws new light on his fascist regime and how it wished to be seen by future generations.
Written in Latin on parchment, the text is buried along with gold coins at the base of the Mussolini Obelisk in the Foro Italico sports complex in Rome.
The existence of the text was uncovered by two scholars, Bettina Reitz-Joosse from University of Groningen in the Netherlands and Han Lamers from Humboldt University Berlin.
They are first to translate the Codex Fori Mussolini, which is buried at the base of the 300-tonne monument erected in 1932.
The researchers pieced together what they believe to be an accurate version of the text from three obscure sources found in libraries and archives in Rome. The original text remains out of reach in the base of the obelisk.
"The obelisk was a major spectacle but the existence of the text wasn't reported at all. It was meant for an audience in the remote future," Ms Reitz-Joosse, was quoted as saying by the 'BBC News'.
The 1,200-word eulogy describes the rise of fascism and Mussolini's feats. It was written by a classical scholar, Aurelio Giuseppe Amatucci in three parts.
"The text presents Mussolini as a kind of new Roman emperor, but also, by using biblical language, as the saviour of the Italian people," Mr Lamers said, who also works with the Catholic University of Leuven.
Accompanying the text is a medal depicting Mussolini wearing a lionskin over his head.