The Mdina Cathedral / St Paul’s Cathedral
In the year 60 BC apostle Paul and some other prisoners were on their way to Rome and were shipwrecked on Malta. At the present location where, according to history, St. Paul’s Cathedral is now, St. Paul and the Roman Governor Publius met each other.
The first cathedral was built in Melite (Mdina) and was dedicated to the Holy Virgin Mary. After the Aghlabid invasion in 870 the church had been plundered and became dilapidated during the Arab period.
In 1091 the Norman invasion took place and christianity returned again to Malta.
The cathedral, dedicated to St. Paul, was built in gothic and Roman style in the 12th and 13th century and after that it was changed and enlarged several times.
The cathedral suffered several damages during the earthquake in 1693. Because Bishop Miguel Jerónimo de Molina had already plans in 1679 to replace elements of the cathedral in baroque style, it was decided to rebuild the cathedral in baroque style designed by architect Lorenzo Gafà. The rebuilding started in 1696 and was completed in 1705. The cathedral was inaugurated by Bishop Davide Cocco Palmieri in 1702.
The cathedral was again damaged by an earthquake in 1856. Frescoes from the 18th century on the Dome were destroyed.
During the building artefects of the cathedral from before 1693 were again brought in.
In this cathedral one finds several paintings and frescoes from the 15th century of, among others: Francesco Grandi, Mattia Preti, Pietro Gagliardi, Vincenzo Francesco Zahra, Bartolomeo Garagona, Luigi Moglia, Domenico Brushi and Alessio Errardi. But also sculptures and other artworks of, among others: Claudio Durante, Francesco Zahra, lessandro Algardi, Vincent Apap and Guiseppe Valenti.
Additional Online information
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A double cross, also called an archiepiscopal cross or a crux gemina.
A cathedral is a church which is also the "seat," in the bureaucratic sense more than the literal sense, of a bishop or in some denominations, another comparably high-ranking ecclesiastical figure.
A church is a "house of worship," a building in which Christians gather to perform the rituals of their religion and interact with one another and hold religious functions. They can be very plain, very simple.
You therefore ordinarily see just one cathedral per denomination per city. Because bishops are responsible for an area in Catholicism a diocese a cathedral can also be thought of as the church associated with the administration of an area.
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