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  • "Lovely visit, my 5 year old son enjoyed the children's activity trail which we did together - very engaging, thank you!"
  • "Thank you to the kind man at reception who helped with Dad’s wheelchair! Great museum!"
  • "St John Ambulance saved my life on 1st March 2015 so I came here to learn more. Keep up the good work!"

News and events

The Museum is currently closed, but we're open online...

The Museum, its buildings and Cloister Garden are currently closed, but we are working behind the scenes to get ready to welcome you back later in the year 

Tickets are now on sale for our online talks series, and the Your Visit page is full of other ways you can visit us virtually.

Thank you for supporting the work of the Museum of the Order of St John, we look forward to seeing you again soon. 

Portrait Bust of Jean de la Valette LDOSJ4000 ©MOSJ Click to expand image Portrait Bust of Jean de la Valette LDOSJ4000 ©MOSJ
Booking essential, Evening Lecture, Online event

Wednesday 10th February

Treasures from the Museum with Dr Jeremy Warren A Grand Master in Miniature: the Portrait Bust of Jean de la Valette

Jean Parisot de Valette was the 49th Grand Master of the Order of St John and founder of the city of Valletta, the capital of Malta. He is best known for organising the defence of Malta during the Great Siege of Malta in 1565. Outnumbered by the large Ottoman force, the Order resisted the siege for over three months until the Turkish forces retreated. The victory brought Valette a great deal of prestige across Europe and he received many gifts to commend his brave leadership. This bust, the finest known portrait of this historical figure, is an example of such a gift and has been recently attributed to the important Renaissance sculptor Giovanni Bandini. Through Jeremy Warren’s research this talk will examine this exquisite artwork and the enigmatic and often difficult man it portrays.

Dr Jeremy Warren is Librarian to the Priory of England and the Islands of the Most Venerable Order of the Hospital of St John of Jerusalem, Honorary Curator of Sculpture for the Ashmolean Museum and Sculpture Research Curator for the National Trust. Dr Warren was formerly Collections and Academic Director at the Wallace Collection. He is a specialist in sculpture and works of art and has published extensively on the subject, including the award-winning catalogue of the collections of the Ashmolean Museum.

All proceeds from this talk, and others in the Treasures from the Museum of the Order of St John series, will be put towards the conservation of the books and bound manuscripts in the Museum’s internationally significant library collection.

Booking essential, Evening Lecture, Online event

Wednesday 17th February

Treasures from the Museum with Professor Timothy Wilson Italian maoiolica pharmacy jars and the Order of St John Collection

The fifteenth and sixteenth centuries saw a great artistic flowering of pottery-painting in Italy, which elevated maiolica to the level of a branch of Renaissance art. Among the most important markets for Italian maiolica workshops were pharmacies, both in religious hospitals and in commercial street operation. The Museum of the Order of St John holds a notable collection of maiolica jars, many of them made for the Order of St John in Malta. The lecture will discuss some of these in the context of the wider art of maiolica.

Timothy Wilson was from 1990 to 2017 Keeper of Western Art at the Ashmolean and (from 2010) Professor of the Arts of the Renaissance at the University of Oxford. He is an Emeritus Fellow of Balliol College, Oxford, and now writes, organizes exhibitions, and lectures, principally on Italian Renaissance pottery.

All proceeds from this talk, and others in the Treasures from the Museum of the Order of St John series, will be put towards the conservation of the books and bound manuscripts in the Museum’s internationally significant library collection.

Booking essential, Evening Lecture, Online event

Wednesday 24th February

Treasures from the Museum with Caroline Tonna Portraits of Costume in Malta

The virtual lecture attempts to show that fashionable dress was an essential part of good taste and luxury for the Maltese gentry and nobility of the 18th century mirroring contemporary styles emerging from European fashion centres. The focus will be on portraits of costume in Malta in the rich collection of the Museum of the Order of St John, London.

Caroline Tonna is an art historian and curator at Palazzo Falson Historic House Museum Mdina. She holds Bachelor degrees in Anthropology, and Art History and has obtained a Master of Arts degree in Art History. She has contributed in local and foreign papers and delivered lectures on her specialised subjects in dress history and photography. Caroline has extensive experience in publishing, radio and television cultural productions.

All proceeds from this talk, and others in the Treasures from the Museum of the Order of St John series, will be put towards the conservation of the books and bound manuscripts in the Museum’s internationally significant library collection.

Booking essential, Evening Lecture, Online event

Wednesday 3rd March

Treasures from the Museum with Francesca Balzan A whirlwind tour of Jewellery in Malta of the Knights

In this online lecture art historian and author Francesca Balzan will give us a flavour of the jewellery prevalent in Malta, from the 16th to the 18th centuries, when the Order of St John governed the Maltese islands. Not only will we be looking at stylistic development but we will also delve into the meaning of the jewellery and the context in which it was produced, the superstitions and quirks that made this jewellery so deeply personal yet reflective of society of the time.

Francesca Balzan is an art historian, author and practicing artist. She has specialised in the research and publication of the history of jewellery in Malta and has lectured extensively on the subject. She was curator of Palazzo Falson Historic House Museum from its opening to the public in 2007 until 2018 and was recently engaged in the design of a new museum. Francesca has curated several exhibitions and written catalogues and monographs to accompany them. She is visiting lecturer at the University of Malta.

All proceeds from this talk, and others in the Treasures from the Museum of the Order of St John series, will be put towards the conservation of the books and bound manuscripts in the Museum’s internationally significant library collection.

  • View of the interior of the Priory Church of the Order of St John The Priory Church of the Order of St John. Photography by Shaun Le Gassick
  • View of the interior of the Crypt of the Priory Church of the Order of St John The Crypt. Photography by Shaun Le Gassick
  • View of the Link Gallery of the Museum of the Order of St John The Link Gallery. © MOSJ
  • ALT= The Cloister Garden. © MOSJ
  • ALT= The Chapter Hall. © MOSJ

Blog

Screenshot of a Zoom call showing three women imposed on three different backgrounds: a garden, a panelled room and a Museum gallery. The Museum team have been trying out the new backgrounds in their meetings.
Buildings, Uncategorized

Brighten up your video calls with our free downloadable backgrounds

Museum of the Order of St John Rachel Job, Collections and Engagement Assistant

Inspired by the Museum of the Home, we've created our very own video call backgrounds that you can download for free. Where would you like to take your next call from? There are three options to choose from... How about our Council... Read more

Black and white photograph of four men in St John uniform standing in a row. The four volunteers pictured outside St John’s Gate, where the Museum is housed. PHA 814
Uncategorized

The King’s Stretcher Bearers 

Museum of the Order of St John Rachel Job, collections and engagement assistant

There were two flights of stairs to be negotiated… but we were thoroughly rehearsed. The King said, ‘thank you’ when finally we had deposited him by the side of his bed. Afterwards the Queen sent for us, and we lined up before her. She shook... Read more

Uncategorized

A Christmas gift from the First World War

Museum of the Order of St John Emily Bourne, Learning and Access Officer

This year we are all preparing to celebrate Christmas in extraordinary circumstances, and there’s no doubt that gifts exchanged will take on extra significance as a token of joy at the end of a challenging year. In the Museum, it is possible to... Read more

Photograph of people standing in a car park holding signs that together read "We volunteer for you. Please stay home for us." Volunteers and staff at Mountbatten House send out a message to the public on social media.
Uncategorized

Museum staff support St John Ambulance's Covid-19 response

Museum of the Order of St John Rachel Job, collections and engagement assistant

Following the temporary closure of the Museum in mid-March, some Museum staff were redeployed into other roles in order to help St John Ambulance support the NHS in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. Museum assistant Rachel Job went to work at... Read more

St John Youth

The History of the Badgers and Cadets

Museum of the Order of St John Rachel Job, Museum Assistant

[caption id="attachment_10983" align="alignright" width="712"] All five siblings of the Pring family from Bristol were St John Ambulance Cadets and were photographed together for the St John Review April 1977[/caption] 2022 will mark the... Read more

Sponsors

The Museum of the Order of St John would like to thank all those who have supported and continue to support its work. In particular, the Museum would like to thank the following for their generosity: