- One of the earliest buildings to be erected in Valletta after 1571 was the Palace of the Grand Master. The principal hall was known as the Sala del Maggior Consiglio and was decorated with a running frieze depicting episodes of the 1565 Great Siege of Malta when the Knights Hospitallers emerged victorious against a formidable armada of the Ottoman Turks. In 1575 the Knights entrusted this commission to Matteo Perez D`Aleccio (1547- after 1628). After his work in Malta, he published in Rome a collection of engravings, practically reproducing his frieze paintings of the Great Siege in the Palace of the Grand Master. The same copper plates were slightly worked over again by the Florentine engraver Antonio Francesco Lucini, and published in 1631. This work is one of the sixteen engravings from the set published by Lucini.
- This engraving represents the deployment of the Turkish invading forces against Fort Saint Elmo on 27th May 1565. It was strategically placed so that its guns covered the entrances to both harbours flanking the Sciberras peninsula as well as the southern section of the peninsula overlooking the Grand Harbour, which meant reducing Fort St. Elmo, with which the Knights maintained a risky life-line of men and provisions. When that life-line was finally cut off, the fate of the heroic defenders was doomed. They requested the Grand Master`s permission to withdraw. On recieving the Grand Master`s reply threatening to replace them by volunteers, the surviving garrison immediately signaled their readiness to defend the fort to the bitter end.
- Inscription: Captioned: "L`Assedio e Batteria di Santermo a di XXVII di Maggio"
- Inscription: L ASSEDIO E BATTERIA DI SANTERMO A DI XXVII DI MAGGIO /In questa forma staua la batteria dintorno a Santermo che il Bascia Mastafa uolse che fusse la prima impresa p[er] guadagnar il porto di Marzamusetto accio lArmata hauesse /Il loco sicuro. Alli 30 di Maggio il Bascia Mustafa con circa a 80 Galere une da Marzasirocco alla cala di S. Giorgio doue si sbarco molte monitione per Sanfermo. /A. Castell S Angelo /B. Il Borgo /C. La Burmula /D. LIsola di S. Michele /E. Santermo /F. La Renella /G. Il Saluatore /H. Il Curadino /I. Ponta delle forche /K. Il Casale di S.. Caterina /L. S. Margherita /M. Porto di Marzamusetto /N. Barche cõ il soccorso a Santermo /O. Ponta di Dragut cõ il soccorso a Santermo /P. Artegliaria che conducano a p[er] Santermo /Q. Padiglione dellBasscia Mustafa /R. Cala di S. Giorgio donde il Bancia fece smontare molte monitioni /S. Li doi Basscia di Mare e di Terra con lOcchiali Calaurese /T. Turchi che conducano li legni p[er] fare li gabioni allartiglieria /V. Scaramuccie oue li li nostril piu uolte ebbeno uittoria /Z. Turchi che marciauano uerso Santermo /J. Scaramucce doue furno morti alcuni turchi /X. Dua batterie una di canoni 14 e laltra di 10 /Y. Luogo doue si accamporno mentre batterno Santermo /F°. V
- Repository/Location: National Museum of Fine Arts (Valletta, Malta)
- The engraver Antonio Francesco Lucini dedicated this set of engravings to the Italian Cardinal Antonio Barberini (1607- 1671), the nephew of Pope Urban VIII (1568- 1684), who was a big patron of the arts in Italy. The artist wrote his dedication on the top left side of the first page of the set of engravings. There is also the Barberini family symbol with the three bees in the cartouch in the centre of the page. [Create]
- Lucini, Antonio Francesco [Create]
- : 44 x 58 cm (without frame)
- Baroque [Create]
- 1631 [Create]
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