Actually, it looks to me like one of the very late in the war 9mm TZ45 submachine guns designed by Toni and Zorzoli Giandoso in 1944. Crude, grip safety behind the magazine housing, and with a collapsable wire stock. The only thing that does not resemble the TZ45 is the absence of a barrel jacket, but I suppose things like that could be jettisoned late in the war.
Are you *sure* he's a partisan and not a member of the Italian Social Republic post-rescue of Mussolini armed forces in the north of Italy? The neat Alpini hat could be an actual uniform element...
Yes, I am sure that it war a partisan: he was a member of the "Monterosa" Division that defected after his arrival in Italy. I have some other pictures of these men and they all had the Alpini hat.
I don't think that it was a TZ45 without the barrel jacket: the space between the grip and the magazine house is too much. If it isn't a Beretta it is perhaps a "Variara" of which few units were produced for the partisans.
PS, please: Tonon, Zorzoli & Giandoso, three different individuals.
To put a finer point on the TZ 45 name: Zorzoli was Aldo Zorzoli, who together with a lieutenant colonel who was the director of the SFARE in Gardone and whose surname was Tonon (his first name remains unknown) designed the TZ 45. The TZ 45 was actually produced by Ermenegildo Giandoso and Son. Ralph
Thanks for the corrections. Respectfully, I simply don't think it is a Beretta. Every Beretta I've seen has a solid wood stock all the way to the magazine well. Even the versions that have a collapsable wire stock, or an MP40-ish folding stock. Also, the Beretta has two triggers, which does not appear to be the case here. Your eyes are almost certainly better than mine. Nonetheless, I think it is a 9mm TZ45. I'm not familiar with the Variara.
So in saying he's a member of the Monterosa Division, he was a member of the RSI military who defected to the partisans, yes? Hence the Alpini hat, since that was their uniform when they were in the RSI military? Wouldn't they have gone over with their issued weapons? Hence, might it not be an Ermenegildo Giandoso TZ 45?