The Medieval Time Period in Malta and Count Roger II of Sicily

The beginning of the medieval time period in Malta, is characterized by various quarreling dynasties taking over the islands. It is believed that this part of the history of Malta, left the island in a state of chaos and disruption, since during that period Malta changed hands many times.


medieval time period malta

Re-creation of a medieval tavern during one of the many Medieval re-anactments that take place in the city of Mdina


This all paved the way for Count Roger II of Sicily to conquer Malta in 1127.

Count Roger’s plan was to strengthen and secure his hold on Sicily, and his eyes fell on Malta to reach these objectives.

It is said that Roger II of Sicily captured Mdina with ease and by the following year he had made himself the master of the islands.

Legend says that the Maltese people got the Malta flag from Count Roger.

medieval time period maltese flag

It is believed that the Count cut off a small part of his own red standard and gave it to the locals for their flag.

They added a white half to it, and so the Maltese flag was born.

During this period, Malta slowly moved back into the European orbit, something that they had somewhat lost under Arab rule.

The close association with Sicily (Malta was incorporated with the Sicilian Crown and was an appendage of Sicily for 440 years) and the many cultures that the Maltese people experienced over the centuries formed the backbone of the Maltese identity, which can be said to be a unique mixture of Western European and North African identities.

Count Roger II of Sicily made an agreement with the Arabs that they were to continue governing the islands, on condition that they paid him an annual tribute.

The Norman Period lasted until 1194. Almost nothing remains of this period, as regards to buildings, sites, etc.

Following that period, Malta once again was sold and resold to various rulers such as the Aragonese, Swabians and Angevins to name a few.

Eventually, the islands became the property of the Spanish throne in 1282.


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