Palazzo Stagno Malta

Architecture

In his book β€œThe Building of Malta during the period of the Knights of St. John of Jerusalem 1530-1795”, Quentin Hughes says that β€œthe carvings on the facades of the Stagno palace are most original and interesting. The triple rolls of the Melitan mouldings are even fatter and more bulbous than usual, but they are strangely combined with delicately carved leaf decoration on the consoles which support the window pediments. These consoles rest upon grotesque heads and tall narrow panelled pilasters which lie against the architrave of the windows. The frieze is richly carved with a flat strap decoration and all the mouldings are unorthodox by any but Maltese standards. The carving of these friezes is more reminiscent of Spanish colonial work from Peru or Mexico than anything usually associated with Malta. The heads have an untamed appearance strangely disquieting.”

Apart from these strange carvings, the palazzo boasts several other intriguing architectural puzzles and wonders. The windows and doorways are haphazardly placed just as they occur with no attempt at symmetry and none of the 167 apertures are the same size. The garden was dug out of the bedrock and the quarried stones were used to build the palazzo as well as, it is said, the nearby church of St. George. The garden is served by 3 wells, amongst which is one of the largest dome-shaped wells on the island.