Scriptwriter passes away


The Maltese literature lost one of its most prolific and successful script-writers when Frans Sammut passed away today aged 65.


Frans Sammut (born 1945 in Malta) was a Maltese author. He studied at the Zebbug Primary School, St Aloysius College, St Michael's Teacher Training College, the University of Malta (B.A., S.Th.Dip./Diploma in Sacred Theology, M.Ed.) and the Perugia University (Diploma to teach Italian abroad).


Sammut first gained recognition in the late 1960s when he co-founded the Moviment Qawmien Letterarju – the Literary Revival Movement. Later he served as Secretary of the Akkademja tal-Malti – the Maltese Language Academy.


He published numerous works, among which the best-selling novels Il-Gagga(1971) [The Cage], Samuraj (1974), and Il-Holma Maltija (1994) [The Maltese Dream], about which literary critic Norbert Ellul-Vincenti said that "there is nothing of its magnitude in Maltese literature."[citation needed] Sammut also published Paceville in 1991 which won the Government's Literary Medal. He published collections of short stories, Labirint (1967) [Labyrinth], Newbiet (1998) [Seasons] and Hrejjef Zminjietna (2000).


His non-fiction works include Ir-Rivoluzzjoni Franciza: il-Grajja u t-Tifsira(1989) [The French Revolution: The Story and the Meaning], Bonaparti f'Malta (1997) [Bonaparte in Malta] (which has been translated in French, as Bonaparte à Malte, and has been published in 2008), and On the Da Vinci Code (2006), a bilingual (English and Maltese) commentary on the international bestseller. He also edited Mikiel Anton Vassalli's Lexicon (2002). Vassalli (d. 1829) is considered the Father of the Maltese Language. In 2006, Sammut's translation of Vassalli's Motti, Aforismi e Proverbii Maltesi (1828) was published as Ghajdun il-Ghaqal, Kliem il-Gherf u Qwiel Maltin". In 2007 his Il-Gagga was published for the fourth time and his Il-Holma Maltija in translation represented Malta in the Esperanto collection of classic literary books by Mondial Books of New York.