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Entrenchments : The Ultimate Guide To Malta’s Prolific Fort-Building History, Part 5

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Lovin Malta’s Forts Competition Series is coming to an end soon — we saw how we built walls, forts and also towers. But there’s still some room for surprises.

Today we will be talking about military trenches, usually either a wall or an actual hole in the ground.

1. Falca Lines, Mġarr

As we all know by now, the Knights of St. John had the incessant need to win at everything — including this competition. So they built a bunch of stuff like the Falca Lines just to get a better chance at winning. Kind of like those singers who enter the Eurovision with two songs.

Anyway, nowadays these lines kind of lie in ruins and only bits of them still exist. You can still look at the remains of this once-promising entry on the boundary between St. Paul’s Bay and Mġarr.

Falca Gap Entrenchment

By Nitramserolf – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/…

2. Spinola Entrenchment, St. Julian’s

The coastal entrenchments of St. Julian’s form part of this ambitious plan the Knights had — to surround the island of Malta with entrenchments. They did not have enough men to guard the existing fortifications, so they built entrenchments instead.

Unfortunately, they didn’t built all of them. They ran out of money eventually and had to stop midway. The Spinola entrenchment stretches on to St. George’s Bay.

3. Ta’ Kassisu Entrenchment, Mellieħa

These are part of the coastal entrenchments which the Knights ran out of funds for. Unlike the St. Julian’s ones, however, Ta’ Kassisu is in a better state.

It was built as part of an emergency pants-shitting drill by the Knights, who were expecting another Ottoman attack in the 18th Century.

4. Louvier Entrenchment, Mellieħa

This Armier entrenchment is one of the best-kept on the island. Again, the Knights seemed to have a bit of a problem with budgeting.

They stopped midway through the digging of a ditch near the Louvier due to lack of funds. Come on guys.

5. Naxxar Entrenchment

Another addition to the ‘we don’t have money to finish this thing we came up with’ series by the Knights of St. John. It’s in ruins nowadays, but we can still see some of their remains.

Part Of The Naxxar Entrenchment V Shaped

By Continentaleurope at English Wikipedia, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/…

6. San Luċjan, Marsaxlokk

San Luċjan was used as a supply base for the British during the French blockade. The fort was built by the Knights, but the entrenchment was built by the British, who had the habit of updating other people’s stuff.

7. Xrobb l-Għaġin, Marsaxlokk

The entrenchment at Xrobb l-Għaġin is a De Redin entry. He did not have enough fingers in the tower pie apparently, so he dipped one in the entrenchment pie too. It can still be seen to this day, but is in a sorry state due to neglect and erosion. This can also be said for the Xrobb l-Għaġin tower.

Tag someone who would love to dig a hole

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