Until within the last 18 years, that which is called the Giants Tower, was only a mass of colossal stones, half hid in the brow of a hill; at that period Colonel Otto Bayer, a man of great scientific taste, was Lieut. Governor of the Island, and Mr James Somerville Chief Magistrate. Those two gentlemen combined in the idea of excavating this extraordinary looking place; and by permission of Governement, with a gang of convicts put at their disposal, they commenced their labours.
As they advanced in their work, every step became more interesting; and finally, after having removed an immense quantity of earth and rubbish, they cleaned out and brought to light, what had been intended for a temple, but which to all appearance had never been finished…
Thomas McGill, A Handbook or Guide for Strangers visiting Malta, Malta 1839.