Severed from its parent language and from the other vernaculars, as well as
from the Islamic culture and religion, the peripheral Arabic dialect of
Malta has for the last nine centuries been exposed to large-scale contact
with Medieval Sicilian, Italian and, later, English. Modern Maltese thus
incorporates a great mass of borrowed words.
This volume is a description of the processes by which Romance and English
loan verbs have been integrated to varying degrees into the Arabic
structure of Maltese morphology. It also proposes a typological
classification of borrowed verbs in a continuum ranging from
fully-integrated types to practically "undigested" loans.
The contact situation described here is of special interest both to
Arabists and to scholars with an interest in language contact phenomena,
especially in view of the basic incongruence between the languages
involved, the long period of contact, and the small area in which it