Author: Michael Cassar

In the 1850s, Lawrence Farrugia Bugeja, the Malta Steam Flour Mill Co., and the Malta and Mediterranean Gas Co. set up business on the quay below the Floriana crownworks from the Advanced Marina Gate (Magazine Bastion) to the fishpond (Il-Menqa). There were proposals to link Marsamxett and Grand Harbour by deepening the ditch between Floriana and Valletta, tunnelling east of the Customs House, or (a third option by Giuseppe Bonavia), by ship canal from the Menqa to Pietà. Robert Stephenson, son of George Stephenson, whose Rocket of 1825 made railway history, arrived on the yacht Titania on February 5, 1857.…

Read More

A study carried out by marine geologist Dr Aaron Micallef (‘Malta’s submerged landscape’, Times of Malta, January 4, 2013), found that the archipelago was two-and-a-half times larger and the sea level 130 metres lower during the last Ice Age. The subsequent rise in sea levels created bays and harbours, mainly in a south-southeast to northeast direction, including Grand Harbour, the Marsa l-Kbira (Mers el Kebir) and its innermost creek, Ix-Xatt tal-Marsa, the stretch of water beyond an imaginary line drawn between Ras Ħanżir and the spur below the Capuchin convent at Floriana. Ancient toponyms offer windows on history, being mainly…

Read More