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Last Surviving ‘Dgħajsa Tal-Latini’ To Get Some Well-Needed TLC

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One of the last surviving examples of a “dgħajsa tal-latini” , acquired by Heritage Malta this year, is set to be restored to its full glory.

Also known as the Gozo boat, dgħajsa tat-tagħbija or tal-pass, it was used as a Malta-Gozo shuttle vessel for passengers and supplies for at least a century.

It was painted in traditional colours of green, blue, red and yellow, measured between 45 and 50 feet and earned its name from its lateen sails which it depended on for motion.

The origins of the boat are lost in the pages of history, but there is evidence this type of boat was being constructed on the shores of the Grand Harbour as early as 1520.

It eventually lost its importance when steamboats were introduced as a means of transport between Malta and Gozo. The last few were converted into fishing boats or left to rot.

Arts Minister Jose Herrera announced today that it will be restored at Heritage Malta’s headquarters in Kalkara, with the intention of displaying it at the old Pixkerija, which could be transformed into a maritime museum.

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