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Your Guide to Malta and Gozo - The French Occupation

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The French Occupation 

Napoleon Bonaparte

French rule in Malta was short lived. They plundered the churches and used the silverware as raw material to manufacture coins, other grieviances included an increase in the Mount of Piety interest rates from 4% to 6%, pensions ceased to be granted and new and hefty taxes were introduced. The Maltese would endure no more and their ire culminated in nationwide attacks on the French occupiers, led by Emmanuel Vitale, Francesco Saverio Caruana and Vincenzo Borg.

Luigi Briffa was sent to King Ferdinand IV of Naples, demanding help so that the French may be ousted. Shortly thereafter, a squadron of British vessels reached Malta, under Sir Alexander Ball.

They outperformed the French in battle, the French surrendered on September 5th 1880. Pigot and Martin for the British, and Vaubois and Villenueve for the French signed a treaty and thus Malta became a British colony.