St. Paul's Catacombs description and photos - Malta: Rabat. Detailed information about the attraction. Description, photographs and a map showing the nearest significant objects. The name in English is St. Paul's Catacombs.
Photo and description
The Catacombs of St. Paul are an extensive system of underground galleries and burials. The natural caves near Rabat, which were used as burial grounds under the Romans and served as a secret refuge and meeting place during the early Christians, have now become one of the local tourist attractions. Their study in 1894 was carried out by a local archaeologist Dr. Antonio Annette Caruana. They are currently managed by Heritage of Malta, which cares about the preservation of many of the historical monuments on the island.
Tourists can visit only two underground shelters out of 24. They got their name from the nearby grotto, in which, according to tradition, the Apostle Paul lived for some time. The entrance to the catacombs is located on St. Agatha Street. There are the private catacombs of Saint Agatha in a small alley about 100 meters away.
The Catacombs of Saint Paul are part of a large cemetery founded outside the walls of the ancient Greek city of Melite, over which Medina and Rabat are now located. The cemetery probably dates from the Phoenician-Punic period. The Phoenicians, like the Romans, had a custom to bury their dead outside the city walls.
In the catacombs of St. Paul there are no bright frescoes on the walls. Here you can see two stone agape tables for funeral meals, niches for icon lamps and excavated tombs. It is hot in the catacombs and there is almost no fresh air. Stone low ceilings seem to be pressed to the ground. Claustrophobic people shouldn't go down into these dungeons.
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Topic: St. Pauls Catacombs description and photos - Malta: Rabat.