St. John Bastion and Adjoining Curtain

St. John Bastion is one of the two main bastions making up the land front defences of Birgu. It is the principal bastion that contains the main entrance into the city and was reinforced with special outworks for this purpose. Its most striking feature was the system of Baroque gateways protecting the passage into the city and the casemated flank of St. John Bastion with its falsabraga. Theinner most gate, the so-called Porta Superiore, situated in the right flank of the bastion, was designed by the Order’s French resident military engineer, Charles François de Mondion. The bastion was unfortunately breached in the early decades of the 20th century to help facilitate the entry of vehicular traffic into the city. Mondion was also responsible for all the alterations to the Birgu land front fortifications undertaken during the course of the 1720s which resulted in the present shape of the fortress. The ERDF 039 project has sought to repair and restore the ramparts’ consumed masonry fabric and also to fill in the missing lacunae created by the breach in the face of St. John Bastion with the construction of an arch. This was done to provide a physical continuity to the line of the ramparts. The project also sought to remove a large mound of debris that was dumped along the left flank of the bastion after World War Two, during the course of which an old sally-port was unearthed.