Language

Maltese, the official language of Malta, has a fascinating linguistic history. It is a Semitic language that evolved from the Arabic dialect spoken in Sicily during the Arab rule in the 9th century. Over time, Maltese incorporated various influences from other languages, resulting in a unique blend.

Apart from Arabic, Maltese has been influenced by Italian, Sicilian, and English. Due to Malta’s proximity to Italy, Italian loanwords and grammatical structures have made their way into the language. Sicilian, being geographically close, has also contributed to the vocabulary and phonetics of Maltese.

English influence on Maltese began during the British colonial period, which lasted from 1800 to 1964. English loanwords and expressions related to administration, education, and technology have become part of the Maltese lexicon.

The Maltese language has its own distinct grammar and pronunciation, making it a unique Semitic language. Despite its influences, Maltese has retained its Semitic roots and is written in the Latin script.

Today, Maltese is the primary language spoken by the majority of the Maltese population. It is also an official language of the European Union. The cultural significance of the Maltese language lies in its ability to connect the people of Malta to their rich historical and linguistic heritage.

Sense of Community

One aspect of Maltese culture that stands out is their strong sense of community and hospitality. The Maltese are known for their warm and welcoming nature, often going out of their way to make visitors feel at home. Family values are highly cherished, and gatherings with extended family members are common, especially during festive occasions.

Religion

Religion also plays a significant role in Maltese culture, with the majority of the population being Roman Catholic. Religious festivals and processions are an integral part of the Maltese calendar, showcasing their deep-rooted faith and devotion.

Traditional Crafts

The arts and craftsmanship are highly valued in Maltese culture. Traditional crafts such as lace-making, pottery, and filigree jewelry are still practiced and celebrated. The Maltese also have a strong tradition of storytelling, with folk tales and legends passed down through generations.

Cuisine

Cuisine is another important aspect of Maltese culture. Traditional Maltese dishes often feature fresh seafood, locally sourced ingredients, and a blend of Mediterranean flavors. Pastizzi, rabbit stew, and ftira (a type of bread) are just a few examples of the delicious and unique Maltese cuisine.

Historical sites

The Maltese also take pride in their historical sites and architectural wonders. The island is home to ancient temples, medieval fortresses, and charming old towns, all of which reflect the rich history and cultural heritage of Malta.

The Maltese Islands have three sites inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List. These are the City of Valletta, the Megalithic Temples and the ─Žal Saflieni Hypogeum.

 

Overall, the Maltese people have a deep appreciation for their cultural roots and strive to preserve and celebrate their traditions. Their strong sense of community, religious devotion, artistic expressions, and culinary delights all contribute to the vibrant and diverse cultural fabric of Malta.