Valletta
A glimpse from 1858! Sketch of Valletta Street shows St Paul feast procession back in the day
See how the feast of St Paul was celebrated 166 years ago in Malta!

Emma Galea

This sketch dating all the way back to 1858 gives us a detailed glimpse into how St Paul feast celebrations looked like 166 years ago.

The detailed sketch shows the procession with the St Paul statue passing through the St Paul Street in Valletta as hundreds if not thousands gather around to watch the statue pass them and pray to the saint.

One can even see the mighty St Paul Church standing alongside many typical Maltese houses as the traditional Maltese balconies adorn them.

Till this very day many across the island are strongly devoted to St Paul as it is believed that after he was shipwrecked in a storm and landed in Malta, he brought Christianity to the islands.

The sketch was likely commissioned as back then some speculated that St Paul landed in Malta on the year 58AD, marking 1800 years since St Paul arrived on the island.

The feast is typically celebrated on the 10th February of each year. It’s even a public holiday here in Malta but this year the day of the feast fell on the same weekend as carnival so the procession will grace Valletta’s streets this Saturday, 24th February. You can find more information about the feast here.

20th February 2024


Emma Galea
Written by
Emma Galea
Emma is a Gozitan writer who loves all things related to English literature and history. When not busy studying or writing you will either find her immersed in a fictional book or at the cinema trying to watch as many films as she possibly can!

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