Following the attainment of Independence in 1964, the island nation of Malta started issuing its own coinage. The English Pound system was retained until 1972, when the Maltese Lira decimal system was adopted. Eventually, the euro replaced the Maltese lira as the official currency of Malta on 1 January 2008.


The Knights of the Order of St John were driven out of the Maltese Islands by the French more than 220 years ago, but their legacy is still very much alive. This is particularly true with respect to their coinage, which features regularly in popular proverbs and idioms. Among them is the proverb ħabib fis-suq aħjar minn mitt skud fis-senduq’ (loosly translates to: a friend at the market is better than 100 scudi in the chest) and the idom ‘ma jiswiex Karlin’ (loosly translates to: not worth a carlino, meaning not worth much).