The Church of the Assumption of Our Lady (more commonly known as the Rotunda of Mosta) has the distinction of being a hugely important landmark of World War II as well as having the honor of being the third largest unsupported dome in the world.
Located directly in the center of the city of Mosta, the center of the island of Malta, this church is rather unassuming as you round the corner into the city center, but the more you learn about the building the more the intrigue builds, which, although it is not in one of the more popular tourist cities like Rabat or St. Julian’s, it is worth the trip to visit this landmark.
The construction of the Rotunda of Mosta began in 1833 and was based on the plans of the Pantheon in Rome. During the 30 years of construction the church that had originally been located in the spot remained there and open for the locals to have a place to worship while the giant rotunda was built around it.
On April 9, 1942, during World War II a bomb was dropped on the church, falling through the ceiling and landing amongst the 300 worshippers that were in the building. Miraculously the bomb did not explode and no one was killed by the bombing. In later years the military person responsible visited the city to offer a public apology which was extremely well received by the local people.
Be sure to check out of the Rotunda of Mosta while you are visiting Malta.