Celebrating one of Malta’s first inhabited areas at the Żejtun museum

The Żejtun Parish Church Museum houses some wonderful treasures from the city’s past, including furniture, sculptures, etchings, and a painting from the School of Caravaggio.
The Zejtun parish church is home to a number of historical treasures. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Malta is home to a number of national museums that showcase our natural, archaeological, and artistic heritage, yet there are also plenty of smaller museums dotting the island which tell stories about the islanders, their communities, their devotions, and their artistic expressions. The Żejtun parish church museum is one such place.

Located adjacent to the parish church dedicated to Saint Catherine, the Żejtun Museum is easy to spot – there’s a huge sign above the door – but that doesn’t mean it’s easy to get into. In fact, at the time of writing, the museum is only accessible by appointment. 

Even so, it is well worth the hassle as it’s home to a wealth of artefacts from across the centuries that tell the story Żejtun, one of the first inhabited areas on the islands, as well as its parish church. 

The most noteworthy object here has to be the portrait of the beheading of St Catherine, which is from the School of Caravaggio. The dramatic scene, executed in the signature chiaroscuro technique, is a feast for the eyes, and you can easily while away a morning looking at the different details in the painting.

But there is a lot more to see too, with furniture, fine glass, ceramics unearthed during archaeological digs, etchings, paintings, and sculptures making up a collection that the Żwieten are, understandably, very proud of.

The museum itself is also a stop on the Żejtun Religious Heritage Trail, where joiners can meander through medieval streets, view the ancient church of Saint Gregory, and lots more.
For more information, call on 2166 3866.

To read more Sunday Circle magazine features about Malta’s less known museums check out this feature about the Tunnara Museum or this piece about the Zabbar Sanctuary museum.

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