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The medical aspects of the 1565 Great Siege of Malta
  1. Charles Savona-Ventura
  1. Correspondence to Prof Charles Savona-Ventura, Humanities, Medicine & Science Foundation, University of Malta, Tal-Qroqq, Msida MSD 2090, Malta;charles.savona-ventura{at}


The 1565 Siege of Malta served as a turning point in the westward Ottoman advance. The 4-month long siege was resisted by the indomitable belief of the defenders that their cause was just and holy. It also required prior detailed organisation to ensure sufficient war materials and that the overall health of the combatants and non-combatants was maintained throughout the months of the siege. This article reviews the contemporary and historical sources relating to the conflict to identify the medical operational plans used by the military during this historic siege.


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