Erected between 1570 and 1580, this is another Girolamo
Cassar inspired palace, its origins going back to the beginning of the Order of St. John
in Malta. A magnificent and beautiful building, it is today the seat of the President and Parliament of the Republic
of Malta. Nevertheless, one can still visit important parts of the palace, such as the Armoury, which among other
things it features the armour of Grandmaster Alof de Wignacourt,
weighing over 110 pounds, and the fabulous armour of Grandmaster Jean Jacques de Verdelin. The Armoury gives one
a concentrated view of the technical achievements and developments of weapons up to the 18th Century.
Opposite the Grandmaster's Palace one can see the former Main Grand, which was originally the Chancellery of the
The Armoury at the Grand Master's Palace
The Armoury at the Grand Master's Palace in Valletta ranks among the greatest collections of arms and armour
in the world. Unlike most such collections formed in modern times, the Palace Armoury constitutes a rare example
of a military arsenal surviving in its original building. It is made more interesting by the fact that it includes
not only the massed armours of the common soldiery but also the enriched personal arms and armoury
of the nobility - the Knights. In fact, the Palace armoury serves both as a museum and also as a repository for
a large collection of arms and armour of mainly Italian, French, Flemish, German and Spanish origin. However, it
also contains, but to a much lesser degree, a varied collection of Turkish armour.
Aside from its obvious attraction to the student of arms and armour, the Palace Armoury collection is also meaningful
to the people of Malta. This is because it constitutes a tangible link to one of the most important historical
periods in the Island's past; that is the rule of the Knights of the Military Order of St. John.