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Valletta(vəlĕt`ə), city (1994 est. pop. 9,129), capital of Malta, NE Malta. It is strategically located on a rocky promontory between two deep harbors. Dockyards line the harbors and employ more workers than any other industry. Tourism is also an important industry. A 16th-century town, with many relics of the Knights of St. John of Jerusalem (the Knights Hospitalers, or Knights of Malta), Valletta contains a 16th-century cathedral, the old governor's palace, the Royal Univ. (1769), a National Museum of Fine Arts, and a library with a museum of antiquities. The city was severely damaged by air raids in World War II.
capital of Malta, situated on the northeastern coast of the island of Malta, on a rocky peninsula between two natural Mediterranean inlets, Marsamxett and Grand Harbor. The climate is mediterranean, with hot dry summers and mild rainy winters (minimum temperature, 4°C; maximum, 36°C). Annual precipitation, approximately 500 mm. Population, 15,600 (1970; with suburbs, 140,800).
Founded in the 1550’s, Valletta was named after the Grand Master of the Order of St. John, J. Parisot de La Valette. During World War II (1939-45) the city was severely damaged by German and Italian bombing raids.
Valletta is an international port, a junction for Mediterranean trade, and a commercial center. Its fueling transit base and shipyards employ a considerable portion of the city’s inhabitants. Valletta is the site of a university (founded in 1592) and the National Museum of Malta (founded in 1905). Valletta is a tourist center.
Valletta has retained its rectangular plan; some of the streets lead into stairways. The forts of Sant’ Elmo and Sant’ Angelo, as well as several other 16th-century fortifications, have been preserved. Architectural monuments include the late-renaissance Italian Court (16th century; architect G. Cassar), the hospital of the order (c. 1580), and St. John’s Cathedral (1573-75; architect, G. Cassar); the baroque Palace of the Grand Masters (mid-17th century; architect, B. Ganga da Urbino), the II Gèsu church (early 17th century; architect, F. Buonamici da Lucca), and the Church of San Giacomo (c. 1710; architect, G. Barbara); and the classical library (1786-96; architect, S. Ittar).