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Exhibition on archeology of Medieval Gozo

Exhibition on archeology of Medieval Gozo

Running until February 2022 is an exhibition focusing on the archeology of Medieval Gozo, which has just been launched at the Romegas Hall of the National Museum of Archeology in Valletta.

An Island in Transition – 700 to 1700 AD: The Archeology of Medieval Gozo provides visitors with an overview of Gozo’s medieval heritage as seen from an archeological perspective. It’s the second event in the medieval Malta exhibition series, an initiative of Heritage Malta and the National Museum of Archeology, aimed at promoting greater public appreciation of Malta’s heritage. The first was dedicated to the archeology of Malta’s Dark Ages, the 9th and 10th century AD.

Jose Herrera, minister for national heritage, the arts and local government, said that though this exhibition focuses on medieval times, the four case studies that are presented, each of which deal with a different aspect of medieval culture, are still very relevant today.

The four case studies are maritime trade, art, the rural landscape and artisanal production. In particular, the exhibition focuses on a central question: was medieval Gozo peripheral or was it a well-connected island?

Kenneth Gambin, Heritage Malta’s COO, spoke of how this exhibition has benefited greatly from the additional collaboration of the superintendence of cultural heritage, as well as the Sannat local council. Along with the exhibition of Giorgio Preca’s paintings at MUŻA, the showing enhances the visitor experience at Valletta’s museums and sites, especially during the Christmas period.  Heritage Malta also plans on setting up the exhibition in Gozo next year.

Gozo’s medieval millennium

According to Nathaniel Cutajar, principal curator at the National Museum of Archeology, Gozo’s medieval millennium is in many ways, uncharted territory. No secure information currently exists on Gozo before the mid-13th century. Following that date, historical information starts becoming more available, albeit sporadically, and inly for limited aspects of social life.

Gozo irretrievably lost most of its medieval archives and artistic heritage after the dramatic invasion of 1551 – an entire millennium had been essentially erased from the historical record. Therefore, archeology plays an important role in filling out some of these historical gaps.

Want to check out An Island in Transition – 700 to 1700 AD: The Archeology of Medieval Gozo? Entrance is free and is located at the National Museum of Archeology in Valletta.