Highlights of the month

Isola di Malta – Map of the 1614 Turkish attack on Malta, known as the Gili map

Aloisio Gili (Maltese, 17th century)
1614 – 1635
Black ink on laid paper – Engraving
41.5 x 27.3 cm
‘Europe Gallery – A Noble Space’
Grand Master Alof de Wignacourt (1547-1622) coordinated the defence of Malta from the attack, known as 'razzia', of a Turkish fleet in 1614. The attack was concentrated on the village of Żejtun. The Ottomans were defeated by men from the fleet of the Order of St John and by Maltese militia. The map by Aloisio Gili illustrates the landing of the Ottoman fleet and their attacks on the Maltese villages. Gili was a silversmith and cartographer coming from a Sicilian family. This is the first printed map produced by a Maltese. All the towns on the island are numbered and their names are provided at the bottom, giving us an insight into old place names, especially of towns that no longer exist. Photograph courtesy of the Malta Study Center at the Hill Museum & Manuscript Library, MUŻA, and Heritage Malta