The Valletta Fortification Plans have returned, at least for some time, to the place they originally referred to. Dating from 1566, the Valletta Fortification Plans were prepared by architect Francesco Laparelli.
Paper gave way to life and activity in the years between 1566 and 1571, when a whopping four thousand workers were utilized to build some of the most advanced fortifications of their time.
The Valletta fortifications are truly magnificent. It is said that even Napoleon Bonaparte was impressed as he took over Malta without any resistance.
The Valletta Fortification Plans will be on show at The Fortress Builders – Fortifications Interpretation Centre (ex Biagio Steps) in St. Mark’s Street Valletta till May. There will also be a number of talks on different as aspects of Malta’s fortifications between Monday 18th and Friday 22nd February.
The walls of Valletta were built to fend off the enemy of the time. Today, Valletta opens its doors and its fortifications to a fascinating mix of culture, history, lifestyle, creativity and commerce.
Taking a glimpse of the Valletta Fortification Plans and witnessing the majestic realities they turned out to be, makes one imagine the heights of human endeavour; the thousands cutting huge stone slabs, pushing, carrying and building together; the perseverant ingenuity of the technical people and the discipline of the overseers, and the awe felt by all those who came in through the passageways of the new city.
The fortifications stand tall and proud. Bruised but not beaten, they are now experiencing their much awaited renaissance. They stand expectantly for an unknown enemy, uncannily battling the ravages of time. They stand, as Mike Oldfield wrote in his classic track ‘Crises’: ‘The Watcher and the Tower, waiting, hour by hour…’
The Valletta Fortification Plans exhibition. Don’t miss it.