The Geology of the Maltese Islands

Geography: The Maltese Archipelago comprises the islands of Malta, Gozo and Comino, all of which are inhabited, together with some very small barren and uninhabited islets and rocks. The largest island, Malta has an area of about 246 km2, while its sister island, Gozo is only 67 km2. The maximum length and width of Malta are 27.36 km and 14.48 km respectively. The corresponding extensions for Gozo are 14.48 km and 7.24 km.
Maltese Archipelago from 228 km altitude

The group is situated in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea, with Malta being 93 km away from Sicily and 288 km from North Africa. Gibraltar is 1826 km to the west and Alexandria is 1519 km to the east. At their extreme points the Maltese Islands fall within the following points: Northern latitude 36o35'00", Southern latitude 35o48'00". Eastern longitude 14o5'00", Western longitude 14o10'30".

Geology: The Maltese Islands are composed of a block of Oligo-Miocene limestones and marls with very subsidiary Quaternary deposits. The Oligo-Miocene succession is a simple "layer-cake" arrangement of Lower and Upper Coralline Limestones with intervening layers of soft Globigerina Limestone, Greensand and Blue Clay. The Tertiary sequence represents a succession of sediments deposited within a variety of shallow water marine enviornments. The Archipelago probably emerged from below sea-level at the end of the early Pliocene period. Palaegeographical evidence suggests that throughout the Quaternary period, the Maltese Archipelago was connected at various stages to Sicily, east Mediterranean lands, Sardinia, Libya and Tunisia.

Related topics
The Changing Scenery
              Tectonic Phenomenon
              Erosive factors