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Roman Villa?

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Roman Villa?
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View looking at a ridge west of San Pawl Milqi where there may have been a Roman Villa—on the crest of the hill on the left side of the image.  Mark Gatt indicates that there are ancient remains there, but no excavation has taken place.

Could this be the site of the home (Villa) of Publius, who was the "chief official of the island?"  If so, then San Pawl Milqi would have been one of the farmsteads associated with his estate. From this crest there is a clear view Salina Bay, and Publius could have seen the plight of the large Roman Grain Ship that Paul and 275 others were on!


San Pawl Milqi is a Roman farmstead that was built at the end of the 2nd century/1st century B.C.  It overlooks the Burmarrad Plain and the Salina Bay (1 mi. away) to the northeast.  It was part of a large agricultural estate—possibly owned by Publius.  A fire in the mid–3rd/beginning 4th century A.D. caused the abandonment of the farmstead.

Tradition has associated this place as the Villa of Publius, who was the "chief official of the island."

Acts 28:7     There was an estate nearby that belonged to Publius, the chief official of the island. He welcomed us to his home and for three days entertained us hospitably.  8 His father was sick in bed, suffering from fever and dysentery. Paul went in to see him and, after prayer, placed his hands on him and healed him

There is no certain proof that would make this is true, but the farmstead was in existence in Paul's day and it is not too far from three bays that have been proposed as where Paul's ship was wrecked:  Salina Bay 1 mi. to the northeast, St. Paul's Bay 1 mi. to the northwest, and Mellieha Bay 3.5 mi. to the northwest.