Bust of Jean de la Valette, 47th Grand Master of the Order of St John of Jerusalem by Leone Leoni

Jean de la Valette was one of the greatest figures in the history of the Order of St John and his defence of Malta against the Turks in 1565 one of the most famous events in European history.


Silver & gilt bronze
Height: 23 cm
Art Fund grant:
£35,000 ( Total: £350,000)
Acquired in:
Daniel Katz Ltd

He was hailed as a hero and showered with gifts by leaders of many lands. This bust is attributed to Leone Leoni, one of the leading Renaissance artists who specialised in portrait busts and medals. He worked extensively for members of the Habsburg family, who were active supporters of the Knights. The fact that the bust is first recorded in a sale of objects from the great collector and scholar Eugene Piot strongly suggests that it was part of the booty taken from Malta by Napoleon in 1798. The rich collection of the newly refurbished Museum contains objects from all phases of the Order’s history, especially the story of Malta. This acquisition will enhance their ability to inspire, inform and educate their visitors.


M.E. Piot sale1860; Gallerie Kugel, Paris; Daniel Katz Ltd.

Venue details

Museum of the Order of St John St John's Gate, St John's Lane, Clerkenwell, LONDON London EC1M 4DA 020 7324 4005 www.museumstjohn.org.uk

Entry details

Free to all
Offers with National Art Pass

Mon – Sat: 10am – 5pm

Sun: 10am – 5pm (July, August and September only)