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Maltese is a
Semitic language closely related to the dialects of Arabic spoken in Algeria and Tunisia. It is spoken by some 400,000 people in Malta.

English is the other official language of Malta and is the medium of instruction. Italian was the official language of the country until 1934 and it is still understood by a large sector of the population. Literature in Maltese flourished during the 20th c.

While Maltese grammar is largely Semitic,
Romance verbs are sometimes added Arabic prefixes ans suffixes. On the other hand, vocabulary was strongly influenced by the dialect of Italian spoken in Sicily. It also includes many English loanwords. The language is written in a modified form of the Roman alphabet.
    Updated: 2017 January 1
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