Survival Maltese

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<p>SURVIVAL MALTESEBy Grazio Falzon</p> <p>MERHBA! WELCOME! This SURVIVAL MALTESE is intended for pleasure, especially to those planning a trip to the Maltese islands. Being able to speak even a few words will guarantee an appreciative and warm response. I suggest that you follow the initial sequence of this Survival Maltese, esp. in regards to pronunciation and basic expressions. This gives you not only a minimum vocabulary, but also helps you get used to pronouncing the language. The phonetic transcription enables you to pronounce every word. The imitated pronunciation should be read as if it were General American English. Of course, the sounds of any two languages are never exactly identical; but if you follow the indications provided here, you'll be able to read my transcriptions in such a way as to make yourself understood. I tested out my transcription method on my California wife; she could pronounce perfect Maltese by reading off my transcriptions. I am deeply appreciative to linguist Bjarne Skov (University of Oslo, Norway) and Hector Barca (Madrid Spain) for their invaluable feedback. I hope you have as much fun learning some basic Maltese as I had working on this project. Grazio N.B. For details about a printed much-expanded version of SURVIVAL MALTESE, please see: Maltese Dictionary &amp; Phrasebook</p> <p>CONTENTS -----------------------Pronunciation Some Basic Expressions Arrival Accommodation Eating Out Travelling Around Sightseeing Relaxing Making Friends Shopping Guide At the Bank At the Post Office Telephone Doctor Dentist Emergency THE ALPHABET -------LETTER APPROXIMATE PRONUNCIATION ------ ------------------------A sala B C D E F G G H short, like 'u' in 'shut' long, like 'a' in 'far' like Eng. b like ch in 'church' like Eng. d short, as e in 'shed' long, as ai in 'hair' like Eng. f like j in 'join' like g in 'great' silent within a word; SYMBOL -----a a: b ch d e e: f j g blu coff demm dell gelu frott gbejna gardell fehem EXAMPLES -------raba</p> <p>pronounced like h in hen when at the end of a word H I J K L M N O GH P Q like h in 'house' short, as i in 'fit' long, as ee in 'jeep' like y in 'yes'</p> <p>h h i i: y k l m n o o:</p> <p>fih hamsa fitt ilu jannar kelma landa mans nisel bott sod boghod</p> <p>like k in 'kit' like l in 'life' as in Eng. as in Eng. short, like o in got long, like aw in law mostly silent (*) gharef as in Eng. glottal plosive sound produced by the closure of the vocal chords followed by their sudden separation</p> <p>p '</p> <p>patata dqiq</p> <p>R trilled like Scottish r marsus S T like s in 'sea' like t in French 'tante' s t</p> <p>r sinjur tfajla u u: v w sh iva werwer xadina zunzan pinzell hut</p> <p>U short, like u in 'full' pulptu long, like oo in 'fool' V W X Z Z as in Eng. like w in 'war' like sh in 'sheep' voiced, like z in 'fuzz'</p> <p>z ts</p> <p>unvoiced, like ts in 'hats'</p> <p>(*) 'GH' is regarded as a single letter in Maltese. When it precedes or follows any one of the vowels 'a', 'e', 'o' it prolongs the sound of the vowel. In my phonetic transcription this is shown by : after the vowel concerned.</p> <p>When 'GH' is followed by the vowel 'i' it takes the sound of 'ay' in the English word 'bay'. When 'GH' is followed by the vowel 'u' it takes the sound of 'ou' in the English word 'soul'. When 'GH' is the final letter in a word, it is pronounced as a soft aspirate sound like 'h' in the English word 'hair'. The phonetic transcription will show the correct variation in pronunciation. N.B.(1) General rules governing the length of vowels: -- All vowels at the end of a word are short and unstressed. -- All vowels are long when they are stressed and are followed by one consonant. They are short when followed by more than one consonant. -- A long vowel becomes shorter when the word in which it occurs is followed by a word beginning with a consonant and carrying the main stress. E.g. dar sabiha.</p> <p>N.B.(2) My phonetic transcription will also show the differences in pronunciation of 'g' in 'gobon' and 'g' in 'gidba', 'z' in 'zija' and 'z' in 'zarbun', and between silent and pronounced 'h'. N.B.(3) Doubled consonants are to be lengthened phonetically at the beginning of a word or inside it. Thus ll in 'falla' must be pronounced not with one l as in English 'fuller' but with the first l closing the first syllable and with the second l opening the second syllable. Approximate phonetic analogy in English would be the pronunciation of "full life".</p> <p>SOME BASIC EXPRESSIONS --------English Expression ------Yes No Please Thank you Thank you Maltese Translation (without diacritics) -------------------Iva Le Jekk joghgbok Grazzi Grazzi hafna Phonetic transcription ------------iva le yek yo:jbok gratsi gratsi hafna</p> <p>very much You're welcome M'hemmx mn'hiex memsh mni:sh</p> <p>Greetings ------Good morning Good evening Good night Good-bye So long See you later This is Mr. Mrs. Miss Pleased to meet you. How are you? Very well, thanks. And you? I beg your pardon? Excuse me Sorry! Bongu Bonswa Il-lejl it-tajjeb Sahha Caw Narak iktar tard Dan is-Sinjur Din is-Sinjura Din is-Sinjurina Ghandi pjacir Kif inti? bonju bonswa illeyl itayeb sahha cha:w narak iktar ta:rd dan isinyu:r diyn isinyu:ra diyn isinyu:ri:na a:ndi pyachi:r kiyf inti</p> <p>Tajjeb(masc),tajba(fem) tayeb/tayba hafna. U inti? hafna u inti Skuzi? Skuzi! Skuzani! skuzi skuzi skuza:ni</p> <p>Questions ------------Where? How? When? What? Why? Who? Which? Where is...? Fejn? Kif? Meta? X'hini? Ghaliex? Min? Liema? Fejn hu...? feyn kiyf meta shiniy a:li:sh miyn lima feyn uw</p> <p>Where are...? Where can I find...? How far...? How long...? How much/many...? How much does this cost? When does.... open/close? What do you call this/that in Maltese? What does this/ that mean? Do you speak English? Is there anyone here who speaks...? yitkellem... I don't speak (much) Maltese. Could you speak more slowly? Could you repeat that? Could you spell the word? Please write the word down. Can you translate titraduchi:li this for me? I understand. I don't understand. Do you understand?</p> <p>Fejn huma...? Fejn insib...?</p> <p>feyn uma feyn insi:b</p> <p>kemm hi(fem), hu(masc) kem iy/u/uma huma (pl) boghod...? bo:d Kemm iddum...? Kemm...? Kemm tqum din?(f) iqum dan?(m) X'hin ... jiftah/jaghlaq? Kif tghid dan/dak bil-Malti/ Xi jfisser dan/ dak? Titkellem bl-Ingliz? Hawn xi hadd li jitkellem..? Ma nitkellimx (tajjeb) bil-Malti. Tista' titkellem iktar bil-mod? Tista' tirrepeti dak? Tista tispelli l-kelma? Jekk joghgbok iktibli l-kelma. Tista tittraducili dan? Nifhem. Ma nifhimx. Qed tifhem? kem iddu:m kem kem t'u:m diyn i'u:m dan sh hiyn... yiftah/yala' Kiyf teyd dan/dak bil malti shiyfisser dan/ dak titkellem bl ingli:s a:wn shi had li ma nitkellimsh (tayeb) bil malti tista titkellem iktar bil mo:d tista tirrepeti dak tista tispelli: il kelma yek yo:jbok iktibli ilkelma tista dan nifem ma nifimsh 'ed tifem</p> <p>Can you show me? I can't. Can you tell me? Can you help me? Can I help you? Can you direct me to...?</p> <p>Tista' turini? Ma nistax. Tista' tghidli? Tista' tghinni? Nista' nghinek? Tista tghatini d-direzzjonijiet ghal...?</p> <p>tista turiyni ma nistash tista teydli tista teyni nista neyneyk tista tati:ni id diretsyoniyi:t al</p> <p>Wanting -------I'd like... We'd like... What do you want? Give me... Bring me... Show me... I'm looking for... I'm hungry. I'm thirsty. I'm tired. I'm lost. It's important. It's urgent. Hurry up! Nixtieq... Nixtiequ... X'ghandek bzonn? Aghtini... Gibli... Urini... Qed infittex... Ghandi l-guh. Ghandi l-ghatx. Jien ghajjien. Intlift. Importanti. Urgenti. Ghaggel! nishti:' nishti:'u sha:ndek bzon a:tini jiybli uriyni 'ed infittesh a:ndi il ju:h a:ndi la:tch yi:n a:yi:n intlift importanti urjenti a:jjel</p> <p>It is / there is ------------It is... It isn't... Hi(ja)...(fem.) Hu(wa)...(masc.) M'hix...(fem.) M'hux...(masc.) iy(ya) uw(wa) miysh muwsh</p> <p>Here it is. Hawn hi. (fem.) Hawn hu. (masc) aawn oo Here they are. There it is. There is/are... Is there/are there...? Ther isn't/aren't. Hawn huma. Hemm hi. (fem.) Hemm hu. (masc.) Hemm... Hemm...? M'hemmx.</p> <p>awn iy awn uma em iy em uw em em memsh</p> <p>It's -------------big small hot cold easy difficult heavy light right/good wrong/bad old new old young m/f sing. plural kbir / kbira kbar zghir / zghira zghar shun / shuna shan kiesah / kiesha keshin facli difficli tqil / tqila tqal hafif / hafifa hfief tajjeb / tajba tajbin hazin / hazina hziena qadim / qadima qodma gdid / gdida godda xih / xiha xjuh zaghzugh zaghzuha kbi:r / kbi:ra kba:r zeyr / zeyra za:r s hun / s huna s ha:n kisah / kis ha kes hin fachli diffichli t'il / t'ila t'a:l hafif / hafifa hfi:f tayeb / tayba taybin hazin / hazina hzi:na 'adim / 'adima 'odma jdid / jdida joda shih / shiha shjuh zazuh / zazuwa</p> <p>zaghzagh beautiful ugly better worse early late cheap expensive near far first last Quantities ----------a little / a lot much / many more / less enough Prepositions ---------on in after before (time) before (place) for from with without towards to until during fuq gewwa / go wara qabel quddiem ghal minn ma' minghajr lejn ghal sakemm matul ftit / hafna hafna iktar / inqas bizzejjed sabih / sabiha sbieh ikrah / kerha koroh ahjar aghar kmieni tard irhis / irhisa irhas gholi / gholja gholjin vicin = qrib il-boghod l-ewwel l-ahhar</p> <p>zazah sabih / sabiha sbi:h ikrah / kera koroh ahyar a:r kmi:ni tard irhis / irhisa irha:s o:li / o:lya o:lyin vichin / 'rib il bo:d lewel lahar</p> <p>ftiyt / hafna hafna iktar / in'as bizzeyed</p> <p>fu' jewa / jo: wara 'abel 'udi:m a:l min ma mina:yr leyn a:l sakem matul</p> <p>next to behind between since above below inside outside</p> <p>hdejn wara bejn mindu fuq taht gewwa barra</p> <p>hdeyn wara beyn mindu fu' taht jewa barra</p> <p>A few more useful words --------------and or never always nothing something none too, also but soon now then again perhaps only u jew qatt dejjem xejn xi haga hadd anki izda malajr issa imbaghad mill-gdid forsi / aktarx biss u yew 'at deyem sheyn shi haja had anki izda malayr issa imba:d mill jdiyd forsi / biss</p> <p>aktarsh</p> <p>Personal Pronouns -------I / I'm not You / You are not He / He isn't She / she isn't We / We aren't You / You aren't They / They aren't Numbers -----0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 xejn wiehed tnejn tlieta erbgha hamsa sitta sebgha tmienja disgha ghaxra hdax sheyn wi:hed tneyn tli:ta erba: hamsa sitta seba: tmi:nya disa: a:shra hda:sh Jien / M'iniex Int / M'intix Hu / M'hux Hi / M'hix Ahna / M'ahniex Intom / M'intomx Huma / m'humiex yi:n/mini:sh int/mintiysh uw/mush iy/mish ahna/mahni:sh intom/mintomsh u:ma/mumi:sh</p> <p>12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100 101 200 300 400 500 600 700 800 900 1000 1250 2000 3000 1000000 first second third fourth fifth sixth seventh eighth ninth tenth</p> <p>tnax tlettax erbatax hmistax sittax sbatax tmintax dsatax ghoxrin wiehed u ghoxrin tnejn u ghoxrin tletin erbghin hamsin sittin sebghin tmenin disghin mija mija u wiehed mitejn tlitt mija erba' mija hames mija sitt mija seba' mija tminn mija disa' mija elf elf mitejn u hamsin elfejn tlitt elef miljun l-ewwel it-tieni it-tielet ir-raba' il-hames is-sitta is-seba' it-tmienja id-disa' il-ghaxra darba darbtejn tlitt darbiet nofs kwart terz par ta'... tuzzana</p> <p>tna:sh tletta:sh erbata:sh hmista:sh sitta:sh sbata:sh tminta:sh tsata:sh o:shriyn wi:hed u o:shriyn tneyn u o:shriyn tletiyn erbeyn hamsin sittin sebeyn tmenin diseyn miya miya u wi:hed miteyn tlit miya erba miya hames miya sit miya seba miya tmin miya disa miya elf elf miteyn u hamsin elfeyn tlit elef milyuwn lewel it ti:ni it ti:let ir raba il hames is sitta is seba it mi:nya id disa il a:shra darba darbteyn tlit darbi:t nofs kwart terts pa:r ta tuzzana</p> <p>once twice three times half a quarter one third a pair of... a dozen one per cent</p> <p>wiehed fil-mija wi:hed fil miya</p> <p>3/4 1995</p> <p>tlitt kwarti</p> <p>tlit kwarti</p> <p>elf disa' mija elf disa miya u hamsa u hamsa u disghin u diseyn</p> <p>Year and Age ------------year leap year decade century this year last year next year each year 2 yrs ago in 1 year in the 80s in the 12th century in the 20th century how old are you? sena sena bisestili deakadu seklu din is-sena is-sena li ghaddiet is-sena d-diehla kull sena sentejn ilu f'sena fit-tminijiet fis-seklu tnax fis-seklu ghoxrin kemm ghandek zmien? sena sena bizesti:li dekadu seklu diyn is sena is sena li a:ddi:t is sena idi:hla kull sena senteyn i:lu fsena fit tminiyi:t fis seklu tna:sh fis seklu o:shriyn kem a:ndek zmi:n a:ndi tletin sena twi:led/twi:ldet flelf disa miya u sittin kem a:ndu a:nda zmi:n</p> <p>I'm 30 yrs old. Ghandi tletin sena. He/she was born in 1960. What is his/ her age? Twieled/twieldet fl-elf disa' mija u sittin. Kemm ghandu/ ghandha zmien?</p> <p>Seasons, Months, Days -----------spring summer autumn winter January February March April May June July August September October ir-rebbiegha is-sajf il-harifa ix-xitwa jannar frar marzu april mejju gunju lulju awissu settembru ottubru ir rebbi:ya: is sayf il harifa ish shitwa yanna:r fra:r martsu april meyu junyu lulyu awissu settembru ottubru</p> <p>November December in May since March the end of of the month What day is today?</p> <p>novembru dicembru f'mejju minn marzu l-ahhar tax-xahar x'gurnata hi illum?</p> <p>novembru dichembru fmeyu min martsu lahhar tash sha:r shjurnata iy illum uw lewel ta lulyu fil o:du matul il jurnata wara nofs ina:r fil a:shiya bil leyl il bi:rah illum a:da yumeyn iylu fi tlit iyi:m il jima id di:hla il jima li a:di:t hmista:sh vakantsa</p> <p>It's July 1st. Hu l-ewwel ta' lulju. in the morning fil-ghodu during the day matul il-gurnata in the wara nofs in-nhar afternoon in the evening fil-ghaxija at night bil-lejl yesterday il-bierah today illum to-morrow ghada 2 days ago jumejn ilu in 3 days' time fi tlitt ijiem next week il-gimgha d-diehla last week il-gimgha li ghaddiet fortnight hmistax holiday vakanza Wishes -------------Merry Christmas! Happy New Year! Happy Easter! Happy Birthday! Best Wishes! Congratulations! Good luck! Regards... Goodbye! Bye! Il-Milied it-Tajjeb! Is-Sena t-Tajba! L-Ghid it-Tajjeb! Awguri tal-birthday! Awguri!/Xewqat Sbieh! Nifrahlek! Ix-Xorti t-Tajba! Inselli ghalik Sahha! Ciao!</p> <p>il mili:d it ta yeb is sena it tayba leyd it tayeb awguri tal 'birthday' awguri/shew'at sbi:h nifrahlek ish shorti it tayba inselli a:lik sahha chaw</p> <p>What time is it? -----------Excuse me. Can you tell me the time? It's ten past three. It's a quarter past five. It's twenty to seven. Skuzi. Tista tghidli x'hin hu? It-tlieta u ghaxra. Il-hamsa u kwart. Is-sebgha neqsin ghoxrin. skuzi tista teydli sh hin uw it tli:ta u a:shra il hamsa u kwart is seba: ne'sin o:shriyn</p> <p>It's half past six. It's noon. It's midnight. In the morning. In the afternoon. In the evening. The clock is fast. the clock is slow.</p> <p>Is-sitta u nofs. Nofs in-nhar. Nofs il-lejl. Fil-ghodu. Wara nofs in-nhar. Fil-ghaxija. L-arlogg ghandu l-quddiem. L-arlogg sejjer lura.</p> <p>is sitta u nofs nofs ina:r nofs ileyl fil o:du wara nofs ina:r fil a:shiya larloj a:ndu il'udi:m larloj seyer lura</p> <p>ARRIVAL ----------Here's my passport. I'll be staying... a few da...</p>