New & now
Throwback: Maltese expat takes to newspaper to find an ‘English-speaking wife’
Things were different back then!

Francesca Xuereb

If you want to find love, there are different avenues that one can take, such as being set up by a friend, the ‘go out and meet someone!’, or dating apps – which have become more popular than ever. However, one method has all but vanished: the personal ad.

The personal advertisement could be found in the classified section of newspapers and would be penned by a writer seeking some form of companionship – be it friendship, a romantic relationship, or even marriage. As the printed newspaper waned in popularity with the rise of digital media, so did the personal ad.

Pictured here is a personal advertisement from 1937! This advertisement, written in the newspaper called Il-Berqa (The Flash), is from a man called Carmelo Micallef. Micallef, 30 at the time, was from Rabat and lived in North Queensland, Australia.

The advertisement states that he possesses land and capital worth £5,000 (approximately £237,809 or €284,239 adjusted for inflation) – and that he is searching for a Maltese woman who speaks English in order to marry her.

Since he’s a man of means, he is even willing to pay for the prospective bride’s passage from Malta to Australia! His address is provided at the end for those who would wish to contact him.

Do you remember personal ads?

 The National Archives of Malta/Facebook

3rd August 2022


Francesca Xuereb
Written by
Francesca Xuereb
Equipped with puns and references galore, Francesca is a writer who's interested in almost anything and everything. When not creating or consuming memes, she can probably be found listening to music, playing video games, reading, and going down endless Internet rabbit holes.

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