Maltese--the other Semitic Language

So you have heard about language families, right? The most familiar one is that of the Romance Languages which are heavily based on Latin: Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, French, and Romanian.

Arabic is by far the largest language language in the Semitic Family. Others are Hebrew, Syriac, Aramaic (what Jesus spoke mostly), and...Maltese:

Maltese is the national language of Malta, and an official language of the European Union. It is descended from Maghrebi Arabic, but is not considered to be an Arabic dialect. It is the only Semitic language written in the Latin alphabet in its standard form. There have been some claims that it is descended not from Arabic but Phoenician, but this view has no support among linguists.

Apart from its phonology, Maltese bears considerable similarity to urban varieties of Tunisian Arabic and other North African Arabic dialects. In the course of history, the language has adopted numerous loanwords, phonetic and phonological features, and even morphological and syntactic patterns from Sicilian and Italian, while many words (some with their plural forms) are also borrowed from English.

From Wikipedia, of course.


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