Statistical analysis of the source origin of Maltese

In: Corpus linguistics around the world

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Abstract

This paper presents the results of the first ever large-scale statistical analysis of Maltese using the newly formed Maltilex Corpus. Traditional etymological and categorical analyses were supplemented with data mining techniques to provide accurate results with reduced effort.

Statistics about the relationship between etymology and word classes were analysed from different viewpoints. Maltese grammar and morphology remain to this day largely Arabic, but with distinct Romance and English morphological accretions. Italian lexical influence upon present day Maltese has exceeded the Arabic content in a quantitative sense, enriching Maltese from a purely root based morphology with additional productive Romance features.

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