Italy's population is about 60.5 M, and their "natural" death rate in 2019 was 10.566 per thousand people (1.0566%). That works out to 1,750 deaths per day. 973 deaths is 56% of that.
Italy's current Covid-19 death rate is
Italy saw 457,000 deaths in WW2 (military and civilian), with a population of 44 million. They fought for 3.25 years, from June 1940 to Sept 1943. That works out to an average death rate of 141,000 deaths per year, or 385 deaths per day, or 0.32% per year.