Title: Count
Title in succession:
Date created: 
Maria Theresia , Empress of Austria, Queen of the Kingdoms in Italy
and by the Vatican as Papal Palatine Count.
Grant by:  Maria Theresa Empress of Austria and all her Kingdoms and the Pope.
Granted To: Salvatore Baldassare Sant 
Rep: Sant (Jurat of Notabile)
Remainder to:
his male descendants in order of Primogeniture
Present Holder: J.A Sant Cassia (this title was never registered with the Committee of Privileges)
Sant Fournier Count Palatine Sant (Senior Line) Sant Manduca
Count Palatine Sant (Senior Line) Sant Cassia Count Palatine Sant and Sant Barbaro (Extinct)
Other related titles: Gheriexem and Tabia
Further notes: Count Sant


A modern creation into Nobility , the Family of Sant were ennobled in Vienna in 1770 by Maria Theresia , Empress of Austria, Queen of the Kingdoms in Italy, with the remainder to his male descendants in order of Primogeniture. 

Salvatore Baldassare Sant , Nobilis melitensis was created a Count by Maria Theresia, Empress of Austria, and Queen of Hungary and Bohemia-in recognition of the 'heroic deeds of his ancestors' who has occupied many important offices and had also accompanied King Ferdinand I and Emperor Charles V in naval expeditions against the African corsairs and the Ottoman invaders. This grantee was, however, requested by the Empress to purchase a fief in Lombardy, and to pay the dues of 3000 florins to the crown for his title.

Salvatore Baldassare Sant, a Jurat of Notabile . His Family can trace their Ancestors back to a Bertu Sant in the Late 16th Century. They herald from Naxxar, Malta about the 16th century, but was given land by his father.

The title of Conte Palatine Sant created in 2nd August 1769 by Pope Clement XIV, and confirmed on 13th November 1769 and to be inherited by male to male descendants, acknowledged by the Cardinal Negrone.

The Barons Pisani and Galea-Feriol, Marquis Testaferrata and Count Sant were the first titled Jurats ever to serve together in 1776.

Salvatore had married to a Maria Antonia Ciantar-Gimbert (a descendant of the Sceberras , de Guevara, Spanish Nobility, and King Henry II of Castile (r1366-79). 

Two of their Children married into the Maltese Nobility (3rd Marquis di San Vincenzo Ferreri , 1st Marquis di Fiddien and a dei Conti Magro di Susa ) 

The 2nd Count Sant, Gio Francesco Sant married into Nobility in the year 1777, to Chiara Bonici-Platamone-Cassia, 7th Baroness di Ghariexem e Tabia. (see House of Cassia History), and sired several children. 

One of them , Rev Publio Maria Sant became the Archbishop of Malta (r1847-57). 

Another son married an heiress (Countess Fournier) and adding to their name Fournier, (see Fournier for full details of the descendants). 

The younger son of the 2nd Count married to a daughter of the Marquis di San Giorgio and their descendants uses the surnames of Sant-Manduca, or Sant-Barbaro. (Note: The descendants of Sant-Manduca are from this connection)

Gio' Francesco Sant, 2nd Count was born 1748 and purchased large amount of property in Valletta, such as Casa Rocca Grande, Casa Rocco Piccola, Palazzo Messina, and Palazzo Marina. An astute businessman and a survivor, he led the Maltese aristocracy in the burning of their patents of nobility during the French occupation. Three of his sons were selected for education in France, but manage to buy them out. He was inside Valletta during the seige. Sant had been a Capitano della Verga under the Order, then a Lord Lieutenant under Sir Alexander Ball to whom he would eventually present the sword of Honour.

Gio Francesco Sant was succeeded by his eldest son , Luigi (1778-1867). 

Luigi Sant Cassia, became 3rd Count Sant and 8th Baron di Ghariexem e Tabia 

He too continued the newly established tradition of marrying into the nobility. 

Luigi married in 1805 to Angela dei Marchesi Testaferrata-Olivier (also a noble family). 

Luigi was made a Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George for his service to the British in Malta. 
He was the first in his line to use the name of 'Sant-Cassia'. He was renowned for his wealth, but his reputation was exaggerated. He quarreled with his father who left much of the family wealth to his other sons, and keep a chapel in the Palazzo Rocco Grande. 

Under the French occupation, the parents had to pay 800 livres for their sons' board and lodging, and 600 livres for their passage on board French warships. The chosen students had to wear 'blue trousers and waistcoats, red cuffs, and facing and white pipings'. Those families who refused to send their sons to France were to be fined 1000 scudi. Among those who were initially chosen were the young Count Fontani, the three sons of Count Sant, and four other boys whose fathers were respectively Baron Galea, Marquis Mallia, Count Manduca, and Marquis Testaferrata.

Luigi , died in 1867 and was briefly succeeded by his son Gio Francesco Sant Cassia (1806-78) as 4th Count Sant and 9th Baron di Ghariexem e Tabia, married in 1830 to a Giovanni Rosa Apap-Bologna dei Marchesi di Gnien-Is-Sultan. 
He had an unhappy marriage, and his wife Giovanna Rosa left him and 'escaped' to Floriana.
Gio Francesco Led an unusual life, extra marital affairs in his life with both sexes. Though he is remembered as the hero of the poor (especially in the country and around his properties) and traveled to Europe regularly.

Gio Francesco , died in 1878, and succeeded by his son, Giovanni (1849-1903) 

Giovanni Sant Cassia married in 1883 to a Maria Anna Galea (a Descendant of the Barons of San Marciano and the Roman Nobility , such as Principe Guistinini, Ruspoli’s, Cesi’s, Gonzago’s, Pamphili’s Corsini’s, Cybo’s and many others. Also from this connection Being related to Many Popes from the 18th Century and beyond) 
He married a country girl by the name of Marianna Galea, whom as noted above had such an interesting blood connection.
Giovanni was a splendid Victorian eccentric. He would travel to Siggiewi at night arriving at about 2am and demanded a haircut for his son for which he paid a gold sovereign. An amicable and boisterous character, he was know to shoot wine bottles with the approval of publicans while stopping on his night rides. 
He always paid the bill. He was the owner of the Roman Villa and fought Count Strickland physically when it was acquisitioned in the public interest (Strickland was first Secretary to the Government). Sant Cassia bought Guarena Palace with the proceeds from the sale of Mtarfa Bridge to the Government. Because of him, 1st class on the Malta train was divided into 'OFFICIAL' or 'Otherwise'.

His son, Francesco Sant Cassia became the 11th Baron di Ghariexem e Tabia, and 6th Count (1899-1947) and married firstly in 1910 to Mary Manduca-Piscopo-Macedonia dei Conti MontAlto and sired three daughters. Mary died several years after their marriage. 

Francesco married Mary’s sister, Concetta in 1915 and sired five sons and four Daughters. 
He was only 13 years old when he inherited his father. He was brought up by the Baroness di Djar-il-Bniet e Buqana.

He entetained King George V to lunch at St Paul's Bay. He was one of the first Maltese owners-drivers of a car and he even owned a bus to carry all of his twelve children in.
He left the island for Australia and returned. It was Francesco who sold the Casa Rocco Piccola to Antonio Cassar-Torreggiani O.B.E in 1918.

Francesco died after World War Two, in 1947 and was succeeded by his son Francis Sant Cassia as 12th Baron and 7th Count (1920-91) 

Francis served with the Royal Malta Artillery as Captain , and was President of the Committee of the Maltese Nobility from 1984 till the Late 80s. 

Once the Committee of Privileges ratified the act of nomination inter vivos by which Nicholas de Piro who succeeded his father as Marquis de Piro, others quickly became attracted to the idea!.

After all, ‘what is sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander’! 

Thus, on 19th. December 1984 (15 months after the de Piro incident), Francis Sant Cassia, 7th. Count Sant and 12th. Baron of Ghariexem and Tabia, who was now himself President of the Committee of Privileges, renounced his title of Count Sant and nominated (inter vivos), his son John to succeed him. 

The Committee of Privileges could hardly fail to ratify this act of nomination inter vivos by its own President. 

After all it had done the same a few months earlier for his predecessor, Baron Jerome de Piro d’Amico Inguanez. 

Thus in March 1985, the Committee most obligingly ratified this act of nomination inter vivos despite the fact that FACT:

a. the title of Count Sant was (is) not disposable by nomination; it was granted by Empress Maria Teresa of Austria in her Kingdom and provinces of Italy with remainder to the male descendants in order of primogeniture 

and that 

b. even if it were disposable by nomination, it most certainly could not be disposed of by an act of nomination, inter vivos, lacking the Sovereign’s assent. 

Baron & Count Francis Sant Cassia died on 27th. October 1988. 

As seen above, even a straightforward succession takes about one year, so 

John Sant Cassia became a de jure title-holder in 1989. 

Thus, between 1984 and 1989, he had no right to hold the title of Count Sant (see footnote below). 

John Sant Cassia, who lives outside Malta, took no part in any Committee elections; he did not serve on the Committee during this time. He took no part in any decisions taken by that body. 

However the Committee’s ratification of his father’s nomination, did serve to consolidate the precedent set by the de Piro's and quickly led on to yet another act of nomination inter vivos being accepted by the Committee. 

After his death in 1988 he was succeeded by his son , John , who is the (presumed 8th Count and) 13th and Present Baron, a Company Director.

John’s heirs are his sister to the Barony di Ghariexem e Tabia, and his Uncle to the Count Sant.

Another note, the Sant Title is a Papal Palentine title, of which the title Count is also allowed to every family hereunder:

Sant Fournier (Senior Line) Sant Manduca (Senior Line) Sant Cassia (Senior Line)


See Genealogical tree......

Giovanni "sives Gio Maria" Sant, married 1644 to Matteola Mifsud, with issue

1. Gio Maria Sant-See Below.
2. Gio Domenico Sant, Abitante of Naxaro, married 1677 to Imperia Attard
3. Rosa Sant, married 1686 to Salvatore Mifsud
4. Grazia Sant, married 1684 to Simone Sceberras

Gio Maria Sant, Abitante of Valletta, married 1676 to Caterina Camilleri

1. Gio Francesco Sant-See Below.
2. Evangelista Sant, married 1693 to Giovanni Xerri

Gio Francesco Sant, married in 1701 to Diane Galea,

1. Salvatore Baldassare Sant, 1st Count Sant and Count Palatine Sant
2. Aloisea Sant, (1708-75), married 1733 to Giorgio Fournier, 1st Count Fournier, 1st Barone de Pausier, with issue. - See Fournier, and de Pausier.
3. Modesta Sant, (1702-67), 'nun', dunm.
4. Giovanna Rosa Sant, (1704-28), dunm.
5. Lorenza Sant, (1706-63), 'nun', dunm
6. Fra. Giuseppe Sant, (1713-), Canon, dunm.
7. Felice Sant, (1717-24), dunm.

Salvatore Baldassare Sant, (1715-91) , Created Count Sant in 1770 at Vienna, and Count Palatine Sant 1769, married in 1740 to Maria Antonia Ciantar-Gimbert.

1. Felice Sant, (1741-infant), dunm.
2. Rosalea Sant, (1742-43), infant, dunm.
3. Diane Sant, (1746-), married Firstly 1763 at Palermo, Sicily to Antonio dei Conti Magro di Susa, (d.1775 at Rome), with issue. married Secondly 1779 to Salvatore Mallia-Tabone, 1st Marquis of Fiddien, with issue.
4. Gio Francesco Sant, 2nd Count-
5. Girolamo Sant, (1751-52), infant, dunm.
6. Agata Sant, (1752-54), infant, dunm.
7. Giuseppe Sant, (1755-59), infant
8. Marie Sant, (1758-), Married to the 3rd Marquis of San Vincenzo Ferreri, with issue.

Gio Francesco Sant,( 1748-..), 2nd Count Sant,

Married 1777 to Chiara Bonici Platamone Cassia, (1757-1821), 7th Baroness of Ghariexem e Tabia, with issue.

Press here to view the Barony of Ghariexem e Tabia

1. Luigi Sant Cassia, CMG., 8th Baron-
2. Rev. Publio Maria Sant, (1779-1864), Archbishop of Malta, dunm.
3. Baldassare Sant, (1789-1858),
Count Palatine Sant, married 1811 to Luigia Fournier, 3rd Baroness de Pausier, Countess Fournier, with issue.- See title Fournier and de Pausier.
4. Giuseppe Sant, (1792-1877), married 1821 to Francesca Barbaro dei Marchesi di San Giorgio, with issue.
4.1. Francesco Saverio Sant, (1882-90), married 1844 to Maria Teresa dei Conti Manduca, with issue
4.1.1. Giuseppe dei Conti Sant Manduca, (1847-85), married 1867 to Agnese Micallef, (Daughter of Sir Anthony Micallef, G.C.M.G, LL.D.), with issue Salvino dei Conti Sant Manduca, (1878-1938), married 1906 to Stella Camilleri, dsp. Luigi dei Conti Sant Manduca, (1881-1938), married 1908 to Giovanna Maempel, with issue Giuseppe dei Conti Sant Manduca, (1909-58), married 1936 to Maud Cassar Torreggiani, with issue Chev. John Mary dei Conti Sant Manduca, (1938-, married 1965 to Louisette Bonici Mallia,(See Tabria), with issue Peter dei Conti Sant Manduca, (1966-, married 1991 to Alexandra Anne Apap Bologna dei Marchesi di Gnien is-Sultan Nicholas dei Conti Sant Manduca, (1971- Maria dei Conti Sant Manduca,(1870-1956), married Giovanni Bugeja Caruana, with issue Edward Vincent Bugeja Caruana, (1891- Alfred Bugeja Caruana, (1892- Josephine Bugeja Caruana, (1893-
4.1.2. Marianna dei Conti Sant Manduca, married 1872 to Paolo Giorgio Falzon, with issue Alfred Falzon Sant Manduca, (1878- , married 1900 to Beatrice Gatt, with issue Victor Falzon Sant Manduca, (1908- Major Albert Falzon Sant Manduca (..., married Mary dei Marchesi Cassar Desain, -See Cassar-Desain and Tabria. Maria Falzon Sant Manduca, (1903- Elena Falzon Sant Manduca, (1904- Maria Dolores Falzon Sant Manduca, (1875-, married 1905 to Count Charles Zimmermann Barbaro, with issue, (See Zimmermann-Foreign Titles)
4.2. Luigi Sant (1824-66), married Maria Aloisea dei Marchesi Barbaro, with issue
4.2.1. Carmela Sant Barbaro (1861-, married 1897 to Temistocle Bruno Olivier, with issue
4.3. Chiara Sant (1828-89), married 1861 to Ramiro dei Marchesi Barbaro, with issue
4.4. Carmela Sant, (1830-, married 1861 to Arturo dei Marchesi Barbaro, with issue

Luigi Sant Cassia, C.M.G, (1778-1867), 8th Baron of Ghariexem e Tabia, 3rd Count Sant,

Married 1805 to Angela dei marchesi Testaferrata Olivier, with issue.

1. Gio Francesco Sant Cassia, 9th Baron-See Below.

Gio Francesco Sant Cassia, (1806-87), 9th Baron of Ghariexem e Tabia, 4th Count Sant,

Married 1830 to Giovanna Rosa Apap Bologna dei Marchesi di Gnien-is-Sultan, with issue.

1. Giovanni Sant Cassia, 10th Baron-
2. Carmelo Sant Cassia (1855-, married Susanna Gauci, with issue
2.1. Giuseppe Amodeo Sant Cassia, (1885-, married Giuseppina Fenech, with issue
2.1.1. Henry Sant Cassia, (1917-, married 1943 to Anna de Piro Gourgion, with issue Dr Louis Sant Cassia M.D.., (1946-, married 1974 to Antoinette Ferro, with issue Henri Sant Cassia, (1977- Emma Sant Cassia, (1980- Maria Susanne Sant Cassia, (1949-, married 1973 to Dr Noel Arrigo LL.D, Former Chief Justice of Malta, (r 2002-) , with issue Edward Arrigo, (1975- Alexander Arrigo, (1976- Joseph Arrigo, (1979- Francesca Maria Arrigo, (1983-
2.1.2. Anthony Sant Cassia, (1919-1999), married 1967 to Mary Rose dei Conti Manduca, and dsp..
2.1.3. Dr Mario Sant Cassia, M.D, (1924-, married 1953 to Melina Boffa, with issue Dr Paul Sant Cassia, M.A, Ph.D, (1954- Peter Sant Cassia, (1961-, married Graziella Debono, with issue. Simone Peter Sant Cassia, (1990-. Mark Anthony Sant Cassia, (1993-. Dr Suzanne Sant Cassia, LL.D, (1956-, married Dr. Mario Felice LLD, with issue. Maria Felice. Chiara Felice. Joanne Sant Cassia, (1965-, married Joseph Debono, with issue. Andrea Debono, (1990-. Christian Debono.
3. Susanna Sant Cassia,' Nun', dunm.
4. Maria Sant Cassia, (1853-, married Gaetano Gauci Tramblett, with issue
4.1. Emma Gauci Tramblet, married Gio Pio de Piro Gourgion, with issue
4.1.1. Dr Alessandro de Piro Gourgion, LL.D, (1917-
4.1.2. Anna de Piro Gourgion, married 1943 to Henry Sant Cassia, (See Above)

Giovanni Sant Cassia, (1849-1903), 10th Baron of Ghariexem e Tabia, 5th Count Sant,

Married 1883 to Maria Anne Galea, (Formerly the House Servant from Gozo), with issue.

1. Francis Sant Cassia, 11th Baron-
2. Beatrice Sant Cassia, (1885-, married 1907 to Capt. Charles Fowler Wyncoll, R.E, with issue
2.1. Elizabeth Fowler Wyncoll, (1908-39), dunm
2.2. Margaret Fowler Wyncoll, (1929-
3. Mary Sant Cassia, (1888-, married 1910 to Tancred Curmi,, with issue
3.1. Lt-Col. George Tancred Curmi OBE. 'Ambassador to the European Community', (1911-78), married Helen Cassar Torreggiani, with issue
3.1.1. John Curmi, (1946-, married 1974 to Sheila Whish, with issue Mathew Curmi Serena Curmi
3.2. Kathleen Curmi, (1913-
3.3. Margaret Curmi, (1916-

Francis Sant Cassia, (1889-1947), 11th Baron of Ghariexem e Tabia, 6th Count Sant,

Married Firstly 1910 to Mary Manduca dei Conti di Mont'Alto, with issue.

Married Secondly in 1915 to Concettina Manduca dei Conti di Mont'Alto, with further issue.

1. (First Marriage) Victoria Sant Cassia, (1910-75), married 1942 to Carmelo Camilleri, with issue.
1.1. Mary Camilleri, (1943-, married 1970 to Carmelo Gatt, with issue
1.1.1. John Gatt, (1972-
1.1.2. Jessica Gatt, (1974-
2. (First Marriage) Mary Elisabeth Sant Cassia, (1911-) , married 1952 to Capt. John Zawadzki, with issue.
2.1. Alfred Francis Zawadzki, (1953-
3. (First Marriage) Maud Sant Cassia, (1912-) , married 1961 to Peter Sydorenko.
4. (Second Marriage) John Sant Cassia, (1919-38), Baronicino di Ghariexem e Tabia, Contino Sant, dunm.
5.(Second Marriage) Francis Sant Cassia, 12th Baron-
6.(Second Marriage) Philip Sant Cassia, (1921-, married 1948 to Mabel Pace Bonello, with issue.
6.1. Francis Sant Cassia,(1949-, married Karen Smith, with issue.
6.1.1. Sean Sant Cassia, (1979-
6.1.2. Russell Sant Cassia, (1981-
6.2. Anne Sant Cassia, (1950-, Married to N.N. Morris with issue
6.2.1. Joanna Morris, (1974-, with issue Dylan...
6.2.2. Darren Morris, (1978-
6.3. Stephen Sant Cassia, (1954-. Dept of Births, Deaths and Marriages, Malta. Birth Certificate No: 0665630. Married to Denise Lovegrove, with issue.
6.3.1. Ryan Sant Cassia, (1991-
6.3.2. Miles Sant Cassia, (1993-
6.4. Joanna Sant Cassia, (1952-. ,married (1) NN, Married (2) 2003 to Edward Wilson., with issue.
6.4.1. Michelle
6.4.2. Lisa
7. (Second Marriage) Anthony Sant Cassia, (1922-, married Brenda Cameron, with issue.
7.1. Susan Sant Cassia, married Calum Meadows, with issue
7.1.1. James Cameron Meadows, (24.09.1985-
7.1.2. Dominic Calum Meadows, (18.07.1987-
8. (Second Marriage) Bernard John Sant Cassia, (1928-85), dunm.
9. (Second Marriage) Norah Sant Cassia, (1916-), married 1957 to James William Marsh-May, (Died 1974) and dsp.
10.(Second Marriage) Carmelina Sant Cassia, (1917- 2004), dunm.
11. (Second Marriage) Josephine Sant Cassia, (1924-, Married 1950 to Antoine Cachia Caruana, with issue.
12. (Second Marriage) Yvonne Sant Cassia, (1925-

Francis Sant Cassia, (1920-88), 12th Baron of Ghariexem e Tabia, 7th Count Sant,
Married 1958 to Jennifer Dowden, with issue

1. John Sant Cassia (1956- ,
Acknowledged by the C.O.P as the 8th Count Sant and 13th Baron of Ghariexem e Tabia.
2. Chiara Sant Cassia, (1957- , Married to N.N. Damiant, with issue.
2.1. Myles Damiant

All corrections are welcome....


1) Gauci,C.A.," The Genealogy and Heraldry of the Noble Families of Malta", Gulf Publishing Ltd, Malta, 1981.
2) Gauci,C.A.," The Genealogy and Heraldry of the Noble Families of Malta, Volume Two", Publishers Enterprises Group (PEG) Ltd, 1992.
3) Gauci,C.A and Mallet, P.,"The Palaeologos Family- A Genealogical Review" ,Publishers Enterprises Group (PEG) Ltd, 1985
4) Gauci, C.A.," A Guide to the Maltese Nobility", Publishers Enterprise Group (PEG) Ltd, Malta, 1986.
5) Montalto, J., "The Nobles of Malta-1530-1800", Midsea Books Ltd, Malta, 1980.
6) De Piro, N., "Casa Rocco Piccola", The Conde' Nast Publications 1999.' Http:// '
7) Giles Ash, S., "The Nobility of Malta", Publishers Enterprises Group (PEG) Ltd, 1988.
8) Unpublished material by Sant Fournier
9) Said Vassallo, C.M., Unpublished research papers.
10) Said Vassallo, C.M., genealogical tree and  Research site


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