Definition of Malta in US English:


proper noun

  • An island country in the central Mediterranean Sea, about 60 miles (100 km) south of Sicily; population 419,000 (estimated 2015); capital, Valletta; official languages, Maltese and English.

Historically of great strategic importance, the island has been held in turn by invaders that have included the Greeks, Arabs, Normans, and Knights Hospitaller. It was annexed by Britain in 1814 and was an important naval base until independence within the Commonwealth of Nations in 1964. Besides the island of Malta, the country includes the islands of Gozo and Comino