Mistra Battery

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Mistra Battery_table_infobox_0

Mistra BatteryMistra Battery_header_cell_0_0_0
CoordinatesMistra Battery_header_cell_0_1_0 Mistra Battery_cell_0_1_1
TypeMistra Battery_header_cell_0_2_0 Artillery batteryMistra Battery_cell_0_2_1
Site informationMistra Battery_header_cell_0_3_0
OwnerMistra Battery_header_cell_0_4_0 Government of MaltaMistra Battery_cell_0_4_1
Controlled byMistra Battery_header_cell_0_5_0 Fondazzjoni Wirt ArtnaMistra Battery_cell_0_5_1
Open to

the publicMistra Battery_header_cell_0_6_0

NoMistra Battery_cell_0_6_1
ConditionMistra Battery_header_cell_0_7_0 IntactMistra Battery_cell_0_7_1
Site historyMistra Battery_header_cell_0_8_0
BuiltMistra Battery_header_cell_0_9_0 c. 1761Mistra Battery_cell_0_9_1
Built byMistra Battery_header_cell_0_10_0 Order of Saint JohnMistra Battery_cell_0_10_1
In useMistra Battery_header_cell_0_11_0 c. 1761–1798Mistra Battery_cell_0_11_1
MaterialsMistra Battery_header_cell_0_12_0 LimestoneMistra Battery_cell_0_12_1

Mistra Battery (Maltese: Batterija tal-Mistra), formerly also known as Despirasse Battery (Maltese: Batterija ta' Despirasse), is an artillery battery in Mistra Bay, Mellieħa, Malta. Mistra Battery_sentence_0

It was built by the Order of Saint John in the 18th century as one of a series of coastal fortifications around the coasts of the Maltese Islands. Mistra Battery_sentence_1

The battery is considered as the best preserved of the Order's batteries in Malta, since it retains all of its original features. Mistra Battery_sentence_2

Many other batteries have been destroyed or otherwise modified, and very few have survived in their original state. Mistra Battery_sentence_3

History Mistra Battery_section_0

The first plans to construct a battery at Mistra Bay were made in 1714, where the knight Mongontier donated 133 scudi for its construction. Mistra Battery_sentence_4

The battery does not appear in the 1715-1716 list of coastal fortifications, but possibly a gun platform was built some years later. Mistra Battery_sentence_5

However, the battery as it is today was built over forty years later in 1761 due to the insistence by the military engineer Bourlamaque, during the reign of Grand Master Manuel Pinto da Fonseca. Mistra Battery_sentence_6

The battery has a roughly semi-circular gun platform, with its northern face having a parapet with three embrasures. Mistra Battery_sentence_7

There was no parapet around the rest of the platform. Mistra Battery_sentence_8

The battery is partially surrounded by a shallow rock hewn ditch that was left unfinished. Mistra Battery_sentence_9

The battery has two blockhouses, which are linked together by a redan with musketry loopholes. Mistra Battery_sentence_10

The redan also contains the main entrance, which is surmounted by the coats of arms of the Order, of Grand Master Pinto and of the Bailli de Montagnac. Mistra Battery_sentence_11

When completed in 1761, the battery had an armament of three 24-pounder and six 8-pounder iron cannons. Mistra Battery_sentence_12

By 1770, the armament was reduced to just a single 8-pounder cannon, and all armaments were removed by 1785. Mistra Battery_sentence_13

The battery was later rearmed once again with 18-pounder cannons. Mistra Battery_sentence_14

These were removed by Maltese insurgents during the French blockade of 1798-1800, and were taken to Għargħar Battery. Mistra Battery_sentence_15

Mistra Battery was included on the Antiquities List of 1925, and it was the only coastal battery to be specifically mentioned in this list. Mistra Battery_sentence_16

Present day Mistra Battery_section_1

At some point, the battery's parapet with embrasures was demolished. Mistra Battery_sentence_17

The battery was used as a store by P2M Fisheries, and a number of alterations were made, in which some parts of the battery were destroyed. Mistra Battery_sentence_18

The fisheries company obtained new premises in 2012 and restored the battery before returning it to the government. Mistra Battery_sentence_19

Despite this, the battery and the surrounding area was vandalized repeatedly. Mistra Battery_sentence_20

Since then, more restoration works were undertaken by Fondazzjoni Wirt Artna. Mistra Battery_sentence_21

The destroyed embrasures and musketry loopholes were rebuilt, and layer of concrete over the gun platform was removed. Mistra Battery_sentence_22

The battery's ditch was also restored. Mistra Battery_sentence_23

Currently, work is being done to build replicas of the battery's cannons. Mistra Battery_sentence_24

The battery is currently closed to the public due to ongoing restoration works, however Fondazzjoni Wirt Artna plans to open it as a cultural attraction in 2015. Mistra Battery_sentence_25

As of April 2016, the battery is at final stages of restoration, but not yet open to the public (as per sign on main entrance). Mistra Battery_sentence_26


Credits to the contents of this page go to the authors of the corresponding Wikipedia page: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mistra Battery.