The Palace Armoury is one of the world’s greatest arms collections housed in their original buildings, with the most visible and tangible symbols of the past glories of the Sovereign Hospitallier Military Order of Malta (The Knights of St. John).
Grand Master Alof de Wignacourt transferred the arsenal to the palace in 1604. Apart from being lavishly adorned with impressive arms trophies, it held enough arms to equip thousands of soldiers. It was housed in the hall at the rear of the building, right above its present location, which were originally the stables. In 1975, the entire collection was transferred to its present ground floor location to make way for the Islands’ new House of Representatives.
Although only a fraction of its original splendour, the Armoury still contains abundant material of Italian, German, French and Spanish origin from principal arms production centres. Exotic examples of Turkish armour are also displayed in the Islamic & Ottoman section.