Outline Of Malta
The following outline is provided as an overview of and topical guide to Malta:
Malta is a small and densely populated sovereign island nation located in the Mediterranean Sea. Malta comprises an archipelago of seven islands, of which the three largest are inhabited. Malta is located 93 km (58 mi) south of Sicily, and 288 km (179 mi) north of North Africa, giving the country a warm, Mediterranean climate. The nation's de facto capital is the historic city of Valletta.
Throughout much of its history, Malta has been considered a crucial location due in large part to its position in the Mediterranean Sea. It was held by several ancient cultures including Sicilians, Romans, Phoenicians, Byzantines and others. The island is commonly associated with the Knights of St. John who ruled it. This, along with the historic Biblical shipwreck of St. Paul on the island, ingrained the strong Roman Catholic legacy which is still the official and most practised religion in Malta today.
The country's official languages are Maltese and English, the latter a legacy from Malta's period as a British colony – the United Kingdom is the most recent outside ruling power. Malta gained independence in 1964 and is currently a member of the Commonwealth of Nations, as well as the European Union, which it joined in 2004.
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