Hal-Qormi


 

Bronze Age use of a cave in the limits of the present village marks the earliest evidence for settlement in this area.  The population appears to have flourished in Phoenician times, a fact revealed by the presence of a number of tombs found during this century at  Hal-Qormi   Beyond that, the history of this village remains obscure until it emerges as one of the first parishes in fifteenth century Malta.

Despite a number of adverse events, the villagers managed to build the largest parish church in the countryside at the time.  Inspired by the works of Sebastiano Serlio,  an as yet anonymous architect managed to design a church which has a facade that combines elegance and grace with an underlying mannerist style.   In the seventeenth century the church was crowned by a dome designed by Malta's foremost architect Lorenzo Gafa.  Through the years the church managed to gather a number of paintings by the islandsí leading artists namely Stefano Erardi,  Francesco Zahra, Giuseppe Cali and Joseph Briffa. The titular painting is a work by Mattia Preti.

The village's population grew over the years and earlier this century the eastern part of the village was proclaimed as a new parish.  A new church was built and dedicated to St. Sebastian.  Imposing on the surrounding landscape, the church's interior has remarkable pieces of sculpture in local limestone.

Qormi is known for its numerous bakeries which until recently supplied most of the southern side of the island.  The life in the village is punctuated by a number of events.  In Holy Week, one of the largest Good Friday processions occurs at Hal-Qormi, an event which attracts a large number of maltese people and tourists .

In the summer months the Maltese celebrate a number of traditional festas. Hal-Qormi also makes its contribution.  For two weeks the village's life rotates around celebrations dedicated to the two patron saints. Street and church decoration , fireworks and  brass band marches make this occasion an unforgettable event
 

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