Traditional Weather Lore of Malta

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05 Jun 2024

Weather Folklore and Superstitions in Maltese Culture

Malta, with its rich cultural heritage, has numerous weather-related superstitions passed down through generations. Here are a few intriguing examples:

Saint Paul’s Shipwreck

On February 10th, the Feast of Saint Paul’s Shipwreck, the weather is seen as an omen for the rest of the month. Sunny weather predicts fair conditions ahead, while rain or storms suggest more bad weather.

Halcyon Days in January

The “Halcyon Days” in January are believed to be a period of calm and pleasant weather. This tradition, rooted in ancient mythology, leads locals to expect and plan for milder conditions during this time.

Saint Lucy’s Day

The weather on December 13th, Saint Lucy’s Day, is believed to predict the next forty days. A sunny day suggests a continuation of good weather, while rain indicates a wet period ahead.

Wind Directions

  • Northwest Wind (Il-Majjistral): Brings clear skies and good weather.
  • South Wind (Ix-Xlokk): Known for hot and humid conditions.
  • Northeast Wind (Il-Grigal): Brings cold, damp weather and storms.

Animal Behavior

  • Cicadas: Loud chirping indicates hot weather.
  • Swallows: Flying high means fair weather; flying low suggests rain.

Cloud Formations

A ring around the moon is seen as a sign of impending rain.

Red Sky Phenomenon

“Red sky at night, shepherd’s delight; red sky in the morning, shepherd’s warning” indicates good weather if the sky is red at sunset, and bad weather if red at sunrise.

These superstitions, though ancient, remain a fascinating part of Malta’s cultural fabric and reflect the islanders’ deep connection with nature.

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