Church of Mary's Nativity within the Fort

Valletta, Malta

Church of Mary's Nativity within the Fort

The Church of the Nativity of Mary is a Roman Catholic church located within the historical Fort St. Angelo, in Birgu, Malta.

The origins of this church, built within the fort walls, is unknown. However it is known that by 1274, the church already existed. Historians assume that the church was probably built during the late 11th century, after Roger I of Sicily arrived in Malta and reconquered the island from the Moors. It is said that the church was built as a thanksgiving by the Christians for the liberation of Malta from Muslim rule. The church is mentioned for the first time in 1274, under the name of St Angelo, when an inventory of the items located in the church was listed. Other records also list this church as the first parish church of the Castrum Maris or Castle by the Sea, as the fort was named in that time. In 1409, Blanche I of Navarre assigned the church under the care of Canon Ruġġieru Segona. By time, the church was used less frequently as people started to use the Parish church of St Laurence in Birgu instead. Consequently, the church was given under the jurisdiction of the Archpriest of Birgu.

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