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Manoel de Vilhena is renowned as the Grand Master who gave Valletta one of its architectural treasures – the Manoel Theatre. Not so widely known is the fact that in putting up this statue on the corner where East Street meets Archbishop Street, he was also giving Valletta its flag. This statue of a lion holding De Vilhena coat of arms resulted in Valletta adopting the lion symbol on its flag. Valletta started off as Humilissima Civitas Valletta—The Most Humble City of Valletta. Subsequent years saw the embellishment of the city with fortifications, palaces and other architectural gems, and these corner statutes and niches. A single lion does not make a pride, but the ruling houses of Europe would eventually move away from its humility to the pride of its nickname Superbissima – Most Proud!
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|Publisher||Aspekt B.V., Uitgeverij|
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