Articles in the Definitive Treaty of Amiens,
relative to Malta, and the Sovereign Order of St. John of Jerusalem.
Source: Boisgelin de Kerdu, Louis de. ANCIENT AND MODERN MALTA , AND THE HISTORY OF THE KNIGHTS OF ST. JOHN OF JERUSALEM, 3 Volumes bound together. G & J Robinson, London 1804 , Volume 3, Book 3, Appendix No XVI
Regulations in the definitive Treaty of Amiens relative to Malta and the
Sovereign Order of St John of Jerusalem.
Article X of the Treaty.
The Treaty was signed 27th March 1802.
islands of Malta, Gozo and Comino, shall be restored to the order of St John
of Jerusalem, to be held on the same conditions on which it possessed them
before the war, and under the following stipulations.
1. The knights of the order whose language shall continue to subsist, after the exchange of the ratification of the present treaty, are invited to return to Malta as soon as the exchange shall take place. They will there form a general chapter, and proceed to the election of a grand-master chosen from among the natives of the nation which preserve their language, unless the election has been already made since the exchange of the preliminaries.
It is understood that an election made subsequent to the epoch shall alone be considered valid, to the exclusion of any other that may have taken place at any period prior to that epoch.
2. The governments of the French republic and of Great Britain, desiring to place the order and island of Malta in a state of entire independence with respect to them, agree that there shall not be in future either a French or English language, and that no individual belonging to wither the one or the other of these powers shall be admitted into the order.
3. There shall be established a Maltese language, which shall be supported by the territorial revenues and commercial duties of the island. This language shall have its peculiar dignities, an establishment and an hotel. Proofs of nobility shall not be necessary for the admission of knights of this language; and they shall moreover be admissable to all offices, and shall enjoy all privileges in the same manner as the knights of the other languages. At least half of the municipal, administrative, civil, judicial, and other employments depending on the government, shall be filled by inhabitants of the islands of Malta, Gozo and Comino.
4. The forces of his Britannic majesty shall evacuate the island and its dependencies within three months from the exchange of the ratifications, or sooner if possible. At that epoch it will be given up to the order in its present state, provided the grand-master, or commissaries fully authorised according to the statutes of the order, shall be in the island to take possession, and that the force which is to be provided by his Sicilian majesty, as is hereafter stipulated, shall have arrived there.
5. One half of the garrison, at least, shall be composed of native Maltese; for the remainder, the order may levy recruits in those countries only which continue to posses the languages (posséder les langues). The Maltese troops shall have Maltese officers. The command in chief of the garrison, as well as the nomination of officers, shall pertain to the grand-master; and this right he cannot resign, even temporarily, except in favour of a knight, and in concurrence with the advice of the council of the order.
6. The independence of the isles of Malta, Gozo and Comino, as well as the present arrangement, shall be placed under the protection and guarantee of France, Great Britain, Austria, Spain, Russia, and Prussia.
7. The neutrality of the order and island of Malta with its dependencies, is proclaimed.
8. The ports of Malta shall be opened to the commerce and navigation of all nations, who shall there pay equal and moderate duties: these duties shall be applied to the cultivation of the Maltese language as specified in paragraph 3, to that of the civil and military establishments of the island, as well as to that of a general lazaretto, open to all colours.
9. The states of Barbary are excepted from the conditions of the preceding paragraphs, until, by means of an arrangement to be procured by the contracting parties, the system of hostilities which subsists between the states of Barbary and the order of St John, or the powers possessing the languages, or concurring in the composition of the order, shall have ceased.
10. The Order shall be governed, both with regard to spirituals and temporals, by the same statutes which were in force when the knights left the isle, as far as the present treat shall derogate from them.
11. The regulations contained in the paragraphs 3, 5, 7, 8, and 10, shall be converted into laws and perpetual statutes of the Order, in the customary manner; and the grand-master, or, if he shall not be in the island at the time of its restoration to the Order, his representative, as well as his successors, shall be bound to take an oath for their punctual observance.
12. His Sicilian majesty shall be invited to furnish two thousand men, natives of his states, to serve in garrison of the different fortresses of the said islands. That force shall remain one year, to bear date from their restitution to the knights; and if, at the expiration of this term, the order should not have raised a force sufficient, in the judgement of the guarantying powers, to garrison the island and its dependencies, such as is specified in the paragraph, the Neapolitan troops shall continue there until they shall be replaced by a force deemed sufficient by the said powers.
13. The different powers designated in paragraph 6, viz. France, Great Britain, Austria, Russia, Spain, and Prussia, shall be invited to accede to the present stipulations.
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