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Facts And History Of The Maltese Language

History

It is an official language of Malta Island. It is closely associated with the various dialects of Arabic, Tunisia, and Algeria. Even though it has an Arabian Influence it is written in Latin Alphabets and has an influence on the language spoken in Sicily. It has a Semitic influence as the people belonging to the Semitic group played a very prominent role in the development of Maltese and other languages in the Middle East for over four thousand years.


Amazing Facts about the Maltese Language


Origin


The Maltese Language has Semitic origin. Even though it has an Arabic origin it is written in Latin Alphabets. It was mentioned in a ballad that was first written by Caxaro Pietro in the fourteen hundreds. Moreover,  the Knights of Malta also tried to write and define the characters of the Maltese language. It is also a widely held belief that the Phoenicians who came to the island of Malta in 750 BC were responsible to lay the foundations of the Basic Maltese language which was further developed and influenced by the various invaders and civilizations that ruled the region. It was mainly after the Norman Conquest of 1090 that the process of the evolution of Maltese began.


Speakers

Almost around half a million people speak Maltese language all over the world. The percentage of people speaking the Maltese language outside Malta is very low.


It has an Arabic Influence: Back in the nineteenth century, Malta was populated by Arabs who managed to make a mark on this land for four hundred years. It is, for this reason, Arabic food, music, and culture have a huge impact and influence on the Maltese language particularly the name of weeks, places, numbers, and some extremely basic conversational phrases. The surnames of people in the Maltese language are quite similar to Arabic and the name of God in Maltese is the same as Arabic i.e. "Allah".


Many Words are the same as English and Italian (Loan Words)


Around twenty percent of the loan words from English make up the vocabulary of the Maltese language. However, according to some sources this percentage is the amount is not more than six percent. This discrepancy probably exists because some new words in the English language have not yet been included in the Maltese Dictionaries. There are various words in the Maltese language that are similar to English and Italian for example futbol as football, Frigg as fridge, klabb as club, and baskitbol as basketball. The influence of Italian Language can be seen in words such as repubblika as repubblica, gvern as governo, and skola as scuola.


Official Language

Along with the English language, the Maltese language is considered as the co official language of Malta.


Alphabet

The Maltese language has 30 alphabet letters and 6 vowels.


French Influence

Maltese also has a bit of French Influence which can be proven by certain words such as Qamis as Chamissie Shirt, Ingravatta as Cravat tie and, Bonswa Bon Soir as Good Evening.


Script

The Maltese language is written in the Latin script. It is actually the only Semitic language that still follows the Latin script.


Dialects: There are six popular dialects of the Maltese language. These are Gozo, Port Maltese, East Maltese, Zurrieq, and West Maltese. The rural Maltese is significantly different from the Urban Maltese which is closer to the standard Maltese. The rural dialects are mostly more Semitic  and their plurals are more broken down than the standard Maltese language.



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