Irrigating a Semi-Arid Landscape: The Medieval Maltese Context
Dr Keith Buhagiar
on Thursday, 18 February
at 18:15 (complimentary refreshments will be served at 18:45) venue: Corinthia Palace Hotel, Attard
The annexation of the Maltese archipelago to Norman Sicily in AD 1127 appears to have been characterised by a centralised coordinated effort aimed at increasing the hydrological and agricultural output of specifically designated countryside areas in north and northwest Malta. Known as viridaria or giardini, these agricultural estates had access to a series of perennial springs. Many of these originated from a series of man-excavated perched aquifer galleries, a number of which subscribe to qanat-type water extraction systems. This lecture seeks to investigate water gallery typologies and physiognomy, as well as the role these had in the transformation of the rural Medieval Maltese landscape.
Keith Buhagiar is a Ph.D. graduate in archaeology from the University of Malta specialising in hydrology, medieval and early modern Maltese cave-settlements and their related water management systems, as well as rural landscape development. Dr Buhagiar is a visiting lecturer in palaeochristian and medieval archaeology at the Department of Classics and Archaeology at the University of Malta. Research interests include central Mediterranean, North African and Near Eastern water management systems, cave-dwelling and Mediterranean settlement location and distribution.