Żejtun dialect

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

One of the dialects found in the Maltese language is the Żejtuni Dialect (in general Maltese termed as Żejtuni and by the speakers as Żejtewni). This dialect is used by many of the Żejtun inhabitants and in other settlements around this city like Marsaxlokk, that consists of about twelve thousand people.

There many words that find it in the Maltese dialect only example[clarification needed]:

  • For kite the Maltese word is tajra but in this dialect it is found as manuċċa.
  • For foggy weather the Maltese word is ċpar but in this dialect it is found as ċlambu.


All the vocal letters in this dialect possess a liquid versatility which allows the position, emphasis and tone of the vowels to change without any distinct rule; in some words the consonant letters are found to change as well. Such variations in the dialect are innate to native speakers.

The Vocal 'A'[edit]

The vowel 'A' in the Żejtun dialect is changed into 'U' or 'E'. Example:

English Maltese Żejtun Dialect
newspaper gazzetta gezzette
meat laħam leħem
fat xaħam xeħem
coal faħam feħem
water ilma ilme
burner spiritiera spiritiere
home dar dur

This form happens to roughly all of the words that end in the vowel ' A ', but when the sentence construction does not allow the vowel 'A' to transmute into 'E', such as in the Maltese equivalent of potato, i.e. ' patata ', a different vowel has to be used to elongate the syllable. Here, the word does not become petete but changes into ' Û ', becoming patûta.

The Vowel 'E'[edit]

The vowel 'E' changes into the vowels 'A' or also 'I'. Example:

English Maltese Żejtun Dialect
wild selvaġġ salvaġġ
seriousness serjetà sirjitu
seminary seminarju siminurju
when meta mite

The Vocal 'O'[edit]

The vocal ' O ' in this dialect changes into ' U ', however it demands an element of phonetical emphasis to differentiate this changed ' U from the previous one. In philology such emphasis requires an accent, hence ' Ù '. Example:

English Maltese Żejtun Dialect
school skola skùla
wheel rota rùta
pan borma bùrma
sack xkora xkùra
corner rokna rùkna
roll romblu rùmblu

This form occurs in many other words that have 'O' as their first vocal letter.

The Vocal 'U'[edit]

When the last vocal of the word is the U, it is changed into the vocal O with the consonant W with a muted-ending . Sometimes the U is changed into EW. Example:

English Maltese Żejtun Dialect
ship vapur vapowr
Mr. sinjur sinjowr
stick bastun bastown
vase vażun vażown
money flus flews
fish ħut ħewt
shop ħanut ħenewt