Valletta, Malta Archbishop Michael Gonzi valletta anniversary
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Valletta marks a very special anniversary

Description

This colour footage from the archives shows special events in Valletta in 1966 to mark the city’s 400th anniversary.

The Archbishop of Malta Sir Michael Gonzi led the celebrations with a procession through the streets of the capital, ending at Fort St Elmo

A special service was held at the historic fort to give thanks for Valletta’s 400th birthday.

The foundation stone of Valletta was laid on March 28, 1566.

The building of the city was spread over many years. Although the first houses for the Knights were sufficiently advanced to be occupied when the Order took official residence in the city in 1571, the Auberges we know today were completed at a later date.Valletta was named after by Grand Master Fra Jean de la Vallette, who succeeded in defending the island from an Ottoman invasion during the Great Siege of Malta.

The city is Baroque in character, with elements of Mannerist, Neo-Classical and Modern architecture, though the Second World War left major scars on the city, particularly the destruction of the Royal Opera House on Kingsway in 1942.

To this day, Valletta is noted for its fortifications, consisting of bastions, curtains and cavaliers, along with the beauty of its Baroque palaces, gardens and churches.

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