“Pawlu Mizzi endeared the Maltese to Maltese language books”

At the Museum Ħaġar il-Pjazza San Ġorġ, Gozo, an exhibition has opened to commemorate publisher Pawlu Mizzi who passed away in August last year aged 89. To mark the opening of the exhibition, the Museum’s Curator who was a personal friend of Mizzi, Reverend Fr, Dr Ġużepp Farrugia, said one cannot conceive Gozo in the 20th Century without the presence of Pawlu Mizzi.

Known as the Father of the Maltese Book, publisher Mizzi is remembered for his great contribution to the publication of books in the Maltese language. Mizzi was an educator in various Government and private schools for 20 years before being appointed an assistant librarian. He was also the Gozo Correspondent for ‘The Times of Malta’ between 1948 and 1962. He is also recalled as the founder of the Klabb Kotba Maltin in 1970 and later Midsea Books.

‘Mill-Qalb t’Għawdex għar-ruħ tal-Letteratura Maltija’ (From the Heart of Gozo to Maltese Literature) is the name of the exhibition that contains a number of photographs and quotations in bilingual publications that are linked to Pawlu Mizzi, as well as a television programme about him. Dr Ġużepp Farrugia said that Mizzi, was born and raised in Gozo and was one of the most important personages in Gozo during the 20th Century.

He was known for his identification with the lives of common persons, such as market vendors, and he helped them considerably and became one of Gozo’s most important personalities. He further said it is not possible to speak of Gozo in the 20th Century without mentioning Pawlu Mizzi, together with other personages like Ġorġ Pisani, maestro Joseph Vella, all giving the definition of a concept of Gozo. It was Mizzi who promoted a love of the people of Malta and Gozo to books in the Maltese language.

Also present for the occasion were Mizzi’s relatives and friends as well as his widow Maria Mizzi who unveiled the plaque embodying the exhibition. The exhibition also includes a presentation covering his autobiographic writings. The exhibition will remain open up to 25th August.

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