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Your Guide to Malta and Gozo - Argotti Gardens

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Argotti Gardens

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This lush green spot,  perched on the St. James Bastion was conceived as a location for the cultivation of medicinal plants for the Knights and built by Manuel Pinto de Fonseca who would later be elected Grand Master. De Fonseca also commissioned the construction of the Dolphin Fountain. Ownership of the gardens was passed to Bailiff Ignatius de Argote in 1741. Argotti became a botanical garden in 1855. A section of Argotti is the University of Malta's botanic garden whilst the remaining area is accessible to the general public. A large fountain within this public area was originally located by the church of Liesse, within which the statue of Neptune that now adorns the courtyard of the Grand Masters' palace used to stand. This fountain was dismantled and lay forgotten for many years until it was saved from oblivion in 1956 when it was reconstructed at Argotti.

                                              

 
 

St. Philip's Garden

St. Philip's Garden, named after the bastion on which it is built was formerly known as the General's Garden. It was annexed to the Argotti complex in 1941. The garden's main fountain consists of three ribbed bowl-like tiers, the largest and bottommost of which is supported on the tails of badly weathered limestone fish. The fountain's original location was St. George's Square in Valletta but this was transferred here soon after the British took possession of the islands to make room for military parades. A tunnel through which the train passed until 1931 is located beneath these gardens. This spot offers a splendid view of the Porte des Bombes.