Medieval Jurats

The governing body was formed of the Captain of the City and four Jurats. Besides these principal officials there were others who attended the meetings and together formed the “Consiglio Popolare,” or the general assembly. Powers were delegated by the Consiglio Popolare to the Jurats of the Universita’ who were elected judges and defended the integrity of the respect due to ancient customs.  From 1530 onwards the Jurats were not only municipal authorities and senators but also served as the privy council to the Grandmaster.

The Electors were all heads of families: the elected were chosen from nobles, honoured citizens, professional people or those exercising a liberal art, secular priests, businessmen and artisans.  The election, which took place every year on the feast of Saint John (24 June), was made orally  and the votes were collected in the towns and in the casals, by the constable. They took office on 1st September, after receiving the ratification of their election from the Viceroy of Sicily.

Consiglio Popolare Jurats between 1403 and 1818 in Malta & Gozo

Reference: Galea Joseph, Malta’s Timeline, pg 126-148

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