Gheriexem and Tabia


Title: Baron
Title in succession:
Date created: 
Grant by:  
Grand Master Jean Paul Lascaris de Castellar
Granted To: Giacinto Cassia
Rep: Sant Cassia
Remainder to:
his descendants in perpetuity
Present Holder: J.A Sant Cassia (UK)


Giammaria Cassia who vanished mysteriously and did not claim his vast and grand inheritance. 
Rumour has it that he was captured by Turks for ransom. 
The more cynical others say that he was brutally murdered by his brother in law, Stanisloa Xara.

The first recorded Cassia was a Judge Gaddao I Cassia in 1481. A highly regarded Judge of his day. This family were well inter-breed with other landed gentry families in Malta , and Sicily.

 Also claims to be descendants of the d'Aragona's ,who were Kings of Sicily and Aragon, Spain.

At the same time , thru  marriages of   noble families , such as Vassallo, who claimed much descendants and alliances to the d'Aragona's.

In the 16th Century, the Cassia's married very well to families , such as Baglio's, di Lenzo's and Cumbo's  increased their stake hold of Land in Malta.

In 1568, Gio Maria Cassia bought the fief of Ghariexem e Tabia, from the Noble Inguanez Family. He's son Giacinto was later Created a Baron over that Fief by the Grand Master of Malta.

A  Noble marriage occured in 1579, when Imperia Cassia married to Gregorio Scerri, 4th Baron di Castel Cicciano.

The family now were in important posts, and  1613, Gincinto Cassia married  Maddalena Scerri, future Baroness of Castel Cicccino which secured the family to be now Nobles.

Giacinto Cassia was a Jurat in Mdina and Valletta  and in 1638, Grand Master Jean Paul Lascaris de Castellar Created Giacinto a Baron, with remainder to all descendants in perpetuity. So Husband and Wife were titled, and it was the first time in this families History to have two titles.

Baron Giacinto died in 1655, and his son Gio Antonio Cassia succeeded as the 2nd Baron di Ghariexem e Tabia, and 7th Baron di Castel Cicciano. Gio Antonio died without issue in 1658, and was succeeded by his Brother Pietro.


The Surdo's were a Family of Ancient Lineage, with many connections to nobility and royalty. They were well descendants of the Scerri's  and the Mego's the Earlier Barons of Castel Cicciano.

The Barony of Castel Cicciano  is a fief in Naples, Italy, and was created in 1560 by King Phillip 1 of Naples and Sicily.

The MEGO'S ( The original title holders were granted the right of Civil and Criminal jurisdiction over their Inhabitants (some thing like a principality).

The Latin Phase used in the Letter's Patent was " IMPERIO MERO E MISTO".

 The third Baron di Ghariexem e Tabia married Eugenia d'Anastasio (a descendant of the Abela's De guara  and Cassia's Families (also of Italian and Spanish Noble descent) Pietro sired several daughters and died in 1686.

Pietro was a Fiscale and Capitano della Verga of Malta 1659-60.

The eldest daughter became the 9th Baroness di Castel Cicciano, and married in 1674 to Paolo Testaferrata, also they were later created Baron and Baroness di Gomerino.

The younger daughter , Domenica Cassia, Became 4th Baroness di Baron di Ghariexem e Tabia, and married Stanislao Xara (a Capitano della Verga 1671-72), in 1666.  

The Xara's were also well connected with the landed gentries  and can traced their lineages to Families like Bonici's, and Cassia's . The Xara's mainly married into Sicilian and Maltese Nobility.   

Domenica died in 1721, and was succeeded by her Son, Pietro Paolo Xara-Cassia as the 5th  Baron di Ghariexem e Tabia.

Pietro Paolo Xara-Cassia married twice, Though his second wife Costanza Leocata had sired several children , and a much needed son to carry on the family name.

Pietro Paolo died died in 1749 Stanislao (Xara) Cassia, the 6th Baron di Ghariexem e Tabia, was  Secreto to the Grand Master de Rohan and died without issue in 1794.

His sister had married to a Gregorio Bonici-Platamone and sire several children.

When Baron Stanislao died in 1794, his closed male heir had died some years back in 1783.

So Stanislao sister's eldest daughter became the 7th Baroness di Ghariexem e Tabia Chiara Bonici-Platamone-Cassia (1757-1821) married in 1777 to a gio Francesco Sant, 2nd Count (Conte) Sant. (Title to the remainder of male to male descent) Chiara's sister married the premier Baron of Malta ( Djar-il-Bniet et Buqana).

 This is where the Union of Sant Cassia came about where both families joint by blood. (the two Surnames of the first Title Holders ).

The first time in use was in 1778, when the eldest son was born ( Luigi  Sant Cassia ) who became  the  8th Baron di Ghariexem e Tabia and 3rd Count Sant.

It was a celebration in 1977, for the 200 years of this union and usage of this surname.

Today, there are other Families of Sant with stem off this Union such as Sant Manduca, Sant Fournier and Sant Barbaro.

All Members today can trace their lineages back to the 4th century in the dark Centuries, through much royalty and noble connections.

The Present Title Holder is John Sant Cassia, the 13th Baron di Ghariexem e Tabia and 8th Count Sant, his heirs are Chiara Sant Cassia, Baronessina  di Ghariexem e Tabia  ( John's sister ), and Phillip Sant Cassia , Contino Sant ( John's Uncle).


This Present Family are closely related and next of Kins to the Counts of Montalto,  Barony of Buleben, and the Italian Count Palatine Buzzi's and Rainier.


Lastly, The House of Cassia will live forever as part of the House of Sant name, as a true Testament of Nobility and Heritage.




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