Dwardu Fenech

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Rev Professor Dwardu Fenech was a poet and scholar of semitic languages.

Early life

Born in Ħ'Attard on 1 June 1933 Fenech studied at the Lyceum, St. Mark's College in Rabat, the Pontifical White Fathers College of Islamic Studies at La Manouba in [[Tunisia and the Institut Catholique de Paris during the summer of 1959. He graduated B.A. (Gen) in French, Italian and Maltese from the Royal University of Malta in 1964, B.A. (Hons) in 1966 and M.A. in Maltese in 1969, with a linguistic thesis on the translation of St. John's Gospel from Greek to other languages, including Arabic and Maltese.

He followed a course in linguistics and in phonetics with Reading University and another in Semitic studies with the University of Leeds between 1973 and 1975. He was ordained priest within the Augustinian Order on 23 March 1958.


Rev Professor Fenech served as an assistant teacher between 1966 and 1969 and then as assistant lecturer within the University of Malta between 1969 and 1975. He was nominated research assistant within the University of Leeds, Lecturer in the Faculty of Arts and the Faculty of Education at the University of Malta. Between 1987 and 1988 he served as acting head and between 1988 and 1998 as head of the department of Arabic. He was nominated associate professor in 1988 and assistant to the Dean of the Faculty of Arts. Professor Fenech was also the chairman of the admissions committee.


In 1969 he became member of the Akkademja tal-Malti and served as council member between 1976 and 1984. He was also a member of the University's Għaqda tal-Malti since 1964 and of the Historical Society. Fenech was elected fellow of the Royal Asiatic Society of London in 1979 and member of the International Register of Profiles in 1988. He was the co-founder and rector of the Augustinian Institute for Patristic Studies, founded in 1983. He was also and examiner of Maltese and Arabic at the University of Malta.


Along the years, Fenech published several books, including:

He was also the editor of the religious journal Augustinian Panorama between 1984 and 1990, published under the auspices of the Augustinian Institute.

Professor Fenech died unexpectedly at St. Augustine's Convent in Old Bakery Street, Valletta on Saturday 5 August 2006. He was 73-years-old. He is buried in one of the Augustinian vaults at the Addolorata Cemetery, Paola.

He died on 5 August 2006 At the age of 73