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Xewkija

Trip Planner Europe  /  Malta  /  Island of Gozo  /  Xewkija
Xewkija is a village on Gozo Island, Malta. The population of Xewkija is 3,300 as of March 2014, which is the fourth largest in Gozo, after Victoria, Xagħra and Nadur .HistoryXewkija, which is situated between Għajnsielem and the capital city, Victoria, is the oldest village in Gozo. It became the first parish outside Victoria on 27 November 1678. It was separated from the Matrix by Bishop Glormu Molina and Dun Grezz Farrugia from Valletta, became its first parish priest. It became the first district 'contrada' to be known as 'casale' or village.The name is derived from the Maltese word "", meaning "thistles" or "thorns". Xewkija is famous for its church, The Rotunda of Xewkija, which is dedicated to St. John the Baptist. It is the Seat of the Knights of the Order of St. John, and was built from Maltese stone by local masons and craftsmen. It is the largest in Gozo and its dome dominates the village. Its architect was Joseph D'Amato. It replaced an older church. The titular statue of Saint John the Baptist was sculpted in wood by Pietro Paolo Azzopardi in 1845.On the site where the present church is, it was said that there was a stone known as 'Maqghad ix-Xih'. Near it there is a small ancient chapel known as Madonna tal-Hniena (Our Lady of Charity) which was dedicated to San Bartilimew. The tower of Santa Cecilja had been in the limits of Xewkija. There is another tower with the oldest sundial in Xewkija. Remains of Tinghi Tower disappeared in the last century. These towers date back to 1613. A 14th century tower used by the Grandmasters as a summer residence, the Tower of Gorgion, was demolished during the Second World War to make way for a temporary airport.
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