|српски језик / srpski jezik|
|Native to|| Serbia |
Bosnia and Herzegovina
|c. 12 million (2009)|
Official language in
|Regulated by||Board for Standardization of the Serbian Language|
Countries/regions where Serbian is an official language.
Countries/regions where it is recognized as a minority language.
Serbian (српски / srpski, pronounced [sr̩̂pskiː] ) is the standardized variety of the Serbo-Croatian language mainly used by Serbs. It is the official and national language of Serbia, one of the three official languages of Bosnia and Herzegovina and co-official in Montenegro and Kosovo. It is a recognized minority language in Croatia, North Macedonia, Romania, Hungary, Slovakia, and the Czech Republic.
Standard Serbian is based on the most widespread dialect of Serbo-Croatian, Shtokavian (more specifically on the dialects of Šumadija-Vojvodina and Eastern Herzegovina),which is also the basis of standard Croatian, Bosnian, and Montenegrin varieties and therefore the Declaration on the Common Language of Croats, Bosniaks, Serbs, and Montenegrins was issued in 2017. The other dialect spoken by Serbs is Torlakian in southeastern Serbia, which is transitional to Macedonian and Bulgarian.
Serbian is practically the only European standard language whose speakers are fully functionally digraphic, latinica) was designed by the Croatian linguist Ljudevit Gaj in the 1830s based on the Czech system with a one-to-one grapheme-phoneme correlation between the Cyrillic and Latin orthographies, resulting in a parallel system.using both Cyrillic and Latin alphabets. The Serbian Cyrillic alphabet was devised in 1814 by Serbian linguist Vuk Karadžić, who created it based on phonemic principles. The Latin alphabet used for Serbian (
Serbian is a standardized variety of Serbo-Croatian,a Slavic language (Indo-European), of the South Slavic subgroup. Other standardized forms of Serbo-Croatian are Bosnian, Croatian, and Montenegrin. "An examination of all the major 'levels' of language shows that BCS is clearly a single language with a single grammatical system." It has lower intelligibility with the Eastern South Slavic languages Bulgarian and Macedonian, than with Slovene (Slovene is part of the Western South Slavic subgroup, but there are still significant differences in vocabulary, grammar and pronunciation to the standardized forms of Serbo-Croatian, although it is closer to the Kajkavian and Chakavian dialects of Serbo-Croatian ).
Figures of speakers according to countries:
Serbian was the official language of Montenegro until October 2007 when the new Constitution of Montenegro replaced the Constitution of 1992. Amid opposition from pro-Serbian parties,Montenegrin was made the sole official language of the country, and Serbian was given the status of a language in official use along with Bosnian, Albanian, and Croatian.
In the 2011 Montenegrin census, 42.88% declared Serbian to be their native language, while Montenegrin was declared by 36.97% of the population.
This section needs expansion. You can help by adding to it. (November 2012)
Standard Serbian language uses both Cyrillic (ћирилица, ćirilica) and Latin script (latinica, латиница). Serbian is a rare example of synchronic digraphia, a situation where all literate members of a society have two interchangeable writing systems available to them. Media and publishers typically select one alphabet or the other. In general, the alphabets are used interchangeably; except in the legal sphere, where Cyrillic is required, there is no context where one alphabet or another predominates.
Although Serbian language authorities have recognized the official status of both scripts in contemporary Standard Serbian for more than half of a century now, due to historical reasons, the Cyrillic script was made the official script of Serbia's administration by the 2006 Constitution.
The Latin script continues to be used in official contexts, although the government has indicated its desire to phase out this practice due to national sentiment. The Ministry of Culture believes that Cyrillic is the "identity script" of the Serbian nation.
However, the law does not regulate scripts in standard language, or standard language itself by any means, leaving the choice of script as a matter of personal preference and to the free will in all aspects of life (publishing, media, trade and commerce, etc.), except in government paperwork production and in official written communication with state officials, which have to be in Cyrillic.
To most Serbians, the Latin script tends to imply a cosmopolitan or neutral attitude, while Cyrillic appeals to a more traditional or vintage sensibility.
In media, the public broadcaster, Radio Television of Serbia, predominantly uses the Cyrillic script whereas the privately run broadcasters, like RTV Pink, predominantly use the Latin script. Newspapers can be found in both scripts.
In the public sphere, with logos, outdoor signage and retail packaging, the Latin script predominates, although both scripts are commonly seen. The Serbian government has encouraged increasing the use of Cyrillic in these contexts.Larger signs, especially those put up by the government, will often feature both alphabets; if the sign has English on it, then usually only Cyrillic is used for the Serbian text.
A survey from 2014 showed that 47% of the Serbian population favors the Latin alphabet whereas 36% favors the Cyrillic one.
Latin script has become more and more popular in Serbia, as it is easier to input on phones and computers.
The sort order of the ćirilica (ћирилица) alphabet:
The sort order of the latinica (латиница) alphabet:
Serbian is a highly inflected language, with grammatical morphology for nouns, pronouns and adjectives as well as verbs.
Serbian nouns are classified into three declensional types, denoted largely by their nominative case endings as "-a" type, "-i" and "-e" type. Into each of these declensional types may fall nouns of any of three genders: masculine, feminine or neuter. Each noun may be inflected to represent the noun's grammatical case, of which Serbian has seven:
Nouns are further inflected to represent the noun's number, singular or plural.
Pronouns, when used, are inflected along the same case and number morphology as nouns. Serbian is a pro-drop language, meaning that pronouns may be omitted from a sentence when their meaning is easily inferred from the text. In cases where pronouns may be dropped, they may also be used to add emphasis. For example:
|Kako si?||How are you?|
|A kako si ti?||And how are you?|
Adjectives in Serbian may be placed before or after the noun they modify, but must agree in number, gender and case with the modified noun.
Serbian verbs are conjugated in four past forms—perfect, aorist, imperfect, and pluperfect—of which the last two have a very limited use (imperfect is still used in some dialects, but the majority of native Serbian speakers consider it archaic), one future tense (also known as the first future tense, as opposed to the second future tense or the future exact, which is considered a tense of the conditional mood by some contemporary linguists), and one present tense. These are the tenses of the indicative mood. Apart from the indicative mood, there is also the imperative mood. The conditional mood has two more tenses: the first conditional (commonly used in conditional clauses, both for possible and impossible conditional clauses) and the second conditional (without use in the spoken language—it should be used for impossible conditional clauses). Serbian has active and passive voice.
As for the non-finite verb forms, Serbian has one infinitive, two adjectival participles (the active and the passive), and two adverbial participles (the present and the past).
Most Serbian words are of native Slavic lexical stock, tracing back to the Proto-Slavic language. There are many loanwords from different languages, reflecting cultural interaction throughout history. Notable loanwords were borrowed from Greek, Latin, Italian, Turkish, Hungarian, English, Russian, German, Czech and French.
Serbian literature emerged in the Middle Ages, and included such works as Miroslavljevo jevanđelje (Miroslav's Gospel) in 1186 and Dušanov zakonik (Dušan's Code) in 1349. Little secular medieval literature has been preserved, but what there is shows that it was in accord with its time; for example, the Serbian Alexandride, a book about Alexander the Great, and a translation of Tristan and Iseult into Serbian. Although not belonging to the literature proper, the corpus of Serbian literacy in the 14th and 15th centuries contains numerous legal, commercial and administrative texts with marked presence of Serbian vernacular juxtaposed on the matrix of Serbian Church Slavonic.
By the beginning of the 14th century the Serbo-Croatian language, which was so rigorously proscribed by earlier local laws, becomes the dominant language of the Republic of Ragusa.However, despite her wealthy citizens speaking the Serbo-Croatian dialect of Dubrovnik in their family circles, they sent their children to Florentine schools to become perfectly fluent in Italian. Since the beginning of the 13th century, the entire official correspondence of Dubrovnik with states in the hinterland was conducted in Serbian.
In the mid-15th century, Serbia was conquered by the Ottoman Empire and for the next 400 years there was no opportunity for the creation of secular written literature. However, some of the greatest literary works in Serbian come from this time, in the form of oral literature, the most notable form being epic poetry. The epic poems were mainly written down in the 19th century, and preserved in oral tradition up to the 1950s, a few centuries or even a millennium longer than by most other "epic folks". Goethe and Jacob Grimm learned Serbian in order to read Serbian epic poetry in the original. By the end of the 18th century, the written literature had become estranged from the spoken language. In the second half of the 18th century, the new language appeared, called Slavonic-Serbian. This artificial idiom superseded the works of poets and historians like Gavrilo Stefanović Venclović, who wrote in essentially modern Serbian in the 1720s. These vernacular compositions have remained cloistered from the general public and received due attention only with the advent of modern literary historians and writers like Milorad Pavić. In the early 19th century, Vuk Stefanović Karadžić promoted the spoken language of the people as a literary norm.
The dialects of Serbo-Croatian, regarded Serbian (traditionally spoken in Serbia), include:
This section needs expansion. You can help by adding to it. (June 2008)
Vuk Karadžić's Srpski rječnik , first published in 1818, is the earliest dictionary of modern literary Serbian. The Rječnik hrvatskoga ili srpskoga jezika (I–XXIII), published by the Yugoslav Academy of Sciences and Arts from 1880 to 1976, is the only general historical dictionary of Serbo-Croatian. Its first editor was Đuro Daničić, followed by Pero Budmani and the famous Vukovian Tomislav Maretić. The sources of this dictionary are, especially in the first volumes, mainly Štokavian. There are older, pre-standard dictionaries, such as the 1791 German–Serbian dictionary or 15th century Arabic-Persian-Greek-Serbian Conversation Textbook.
The standard and the only completed etymological dictionary of Serbian is the "Skok", written by the Croatian linguist Petar Skok: Etimologijski rječnik hrvatskoga ili srpskoga jezika ("Etymological Dictionary of Croatian or Serbian"). I-IV. Zagreb 1971–1974.
There is also a new monumental Etimološki rečnik srpskog jezika (Etymological Dictionary of Serbian). So far, two volumes have been published: I (with words on A-), and II (Ba-Bd).
There are specialized etymological dictionaries for German, Italian, Croatian, Turkish, Greek, Hungarian, Russian, English and other loanwords (cf. chapter word origin).
Article 1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in Serbian, written in the Cyrillic script:
Сва људска бића рађају се слободна и једнака у достојанству и правима. Она су обдарена разумом и свешћу и треба једни према другима да поступају у духу братства.
Article 1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in Serbian, written in the Latin alphabet:
Sva ljudska bića rađaju se slobodna i jednaka u dostojanstvu i pravima. Ona su obdarena razumom i svešću i treba jedni prema drugima da postupaju u duhu bratstva.
Article 1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in English:
All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.
|South Slavic languages and dialects|
Serbo-Croatian – also called Serbo-Croat, Serbo-Croat-Bosnian (SCB), Bosnian-Croatian-Serbian (BCS), and Bosnian-Croatian-Montenegrin-Serbian (BCMS) – is a South Slavic language and the primary language of Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Montenegro. It is a pluricentric language with four mutually intelligible standard varieties, namely Serbian, Croatian, Bosnian, and Montenegrin.
Bosnian, sometimes referred to as Bosniak language, is the standardized variety of the Serbo-Croatian pluricentric language mainly used by ethnic Bosniaks. Bosnian is one of three such varieties considered official languages of Bosnia and Herzegovina, along with Croatian and Serbian. It is also an officially recognized minority language in Croatia, Serbia, Montenegro, North Macedonia and Kosovo.
Standard Bosnian, Croatian, Montenegrin, and Serbian are different national variants and official registers of the pluricentric Serbo-Croatian language.
Montenegrin is a normative variety of the Serbo-Croatian language mainly used by Montenegrins and is the official language of Montenegro. Montenegrin is based on the most widespread dialect of Serbo-Croatian, Shtokavian, more specifically on Eastern Herzegovinian, which is also the basis of Standard Croatian, Serbian, and Bosnian.
The South Slavic languages are one of three branches of the Slavic languages. There are approximately 30 million speakers, mainly in the Balkans. These are separated geographically from speakers of the other two Slavic branches by a belt of German, Hungarian and Romanian speakers.
Shtokavian or Štokavian is the prestige supradialect of the pluricentric Serbo-Croatian language and the basis of its Serbian, Croatian, Bosnian and Montenegrin standards. It is a part of the South Slavic dialect continuum. Its name comes from the form for the interrogative pronoun for "what" što. This is in contrast to Kajkavian and Chakavian.
Chakavian or Čakavian is a South Slavic supradialect or language spoken by Croats along the Adriatic coast, in the historical regions of Dalmatia, Istria, Croatian Littoral and parts of coastal and southern Central Croatia, as well as by the Burgenland Croats as Burgenland Croatian in southeastern Austria, northwestern Hungary and southwestern Slovakia as well as few municipalities in southern Slovenia on the border with Croatia.
Gaj's Latin alphabet, also known as abeceda or gajica, is the form of the Latin script used for writing Serbo-Croatian and all of its standard varieties: Bosnian, Croatian, Montenegrin, and Serbian.
The Bunjevac dialect, also known as Bunjevac speech, is a Neo-Shtokavian Younger Ikavian dialect of the Serbo-Croatian pluricentric language, preserved among members of the Bunjevac community. Their accent is purely Ikavian, with /i/ for the Common Slavic vowels yat. There are three branches of the Neo-Shtokavian Younger Ikavian dialect: Dalmatian, Danubian, and Littoral-Lika. Its speakers largely use the Latin alphabet and are living in parts of Bosnia and Herzegovina, different parts of Croatia, southern parts of Hungary as well in northern parts of the autonomous province Vojvodina of Serbia. Bunjevac dialect has been included in the list of official public administrative languages of the Subotica Municipality in Serbia since 2021. And Croatia added in 2021 the Bunjevac dialect to the list of protected intangible cultural heritage. Within the Bunjevac community and between Serbia and Croatia is for several decades an ongoing language battle about the status of Bunjevac speech.
The romanization of Serbian or latinization of Serbian is the representation of the Serbian language using Latin letters. Serbian is written in two alphabets, Serbian Cyrillic, a variation of the Cyrillic alphabet, and Gaj's Latin, or latinica, a variation of the Latin alphabet. The Serbian language is an example of digraphia.
Asim Peco was a renowned Bosnian linguist, academician, professor, author and editor.
The Vienna Literary Agreement was the result of a meeting held in March 1850, when writers from Croatia, Serbia and Carniola (Slovenia) met to discuss the extent to which their literatures could be conjoined and united to create a standardized Serbo-Croatian language.
The agreement recognized the commonality of South Slavic dialects and enumerated a basic set of grammar rules which they shared.
The Montenegrin alphabet is the collective name given to "Abeceda" and "Азбука", the writing systems used to write the Montenegrin language. It was adopted on 9 June 2009 by the Montenegrin Minister of Education, Sreten Škuletić and replaced the Serbian Cyrillic and Gaj's Latin alphabets in use at the time.
Ivan Klajn was a Serbian linguist, philologist and language historian, with primary interest in Romance languages and Serbian. He was a regular member of the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts, and the editor-in-chief of the Matica srpska's journal Jezik danas. Through his paternal family, which lived in Vukovar for generations, he was of Croatian-Jewish descent.
Croatian is the standardised variety of the Serbo-Croatian pluricentric language mainly used by Croats. It is the national official language and literary standard of Croatia, one of the official languages of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, the Serbian province of Vojvodina, the European Union and a recognized minority language elsewhere in Serbia and other neighbouring countries.
Serbo-Croatian is a South Slavic language with four national standards. The Eastern Herzegovinian Neo-Shtokavian dialect forms the basis for Bosnian, Croatian, Montenegrin, and Serbian.
The dialects of Serbo-Croatian include the vernacular forms and standardized sub-dialect forms of Serbo-Croatian as a whole or as part of its standard varieties: Bosnian, Croatian, Montenegrin, and Serbian. They are part of the dialect continuum of South Slavic languages that joins through the transitional Torlakian dialects the Macedonian dialects to the south, Bulgarian dialects to the southeast and Slovene dialects to the northwest.
Marin Temperica or Marin Temparica was a 16th-century Ragusan merchant, Jesuit and linguist. In 1551, after receiving basic education in Dubrovnik, he moved to Ottoman part of Balkans and spent 24 years working as a merchant. Temperica was one of the first chaplains of the Jesuit household in Istanbul. He returned to Dubrovnik in 1575 and continued his activities in Jesuit religious congregation of the Catholic Church.
Serbo-Croatian or Croato-Serbian, rarely Serbo-Croat or Croato-Serb, refers to a South Slavic language that is the primary language of Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Montenegro, as well as a minority language in Kosovo.
The Dictionary of Serbo-Croatian Literary and Vernacular Language or the Dictionary of the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts is the official dictionary of the Serbo-Croatian language published by the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts. The publication of the Dictionary has started in 1959, and is ongoing. So far, 21 volumes have been published, with the latest, 21st volume, published in 2020 covering words starting with letter "p". About fifty more years are needed for the completion of the whole project. It is a historical dictionary whose entries are based on primary sources of actual usage in the last two centuries.
Serbian, Bosnian, Albanian and Croatian shall also be in the official use.
Podle čl. 3 odst. 2 Statutu Rady je jejich počet 12 a jsou uživateli těchto menšinových jazyků: ..., srbština a ukrajinština
The debate about the status of the Serbo-Croatian language and its varieties has recently shifted (again) towards a position which looks at the internal variation within Serbo-Croatian through the prism of linguistic pluricentricity
Obwohl das Kroatische sich in den letzten Jahren in einigen Gebieten, vor allem jedoch auf lexikalischer Ebene, verändert hat, sind diese Änderungen noch nicht bedeutend genug, dass der Terminus Ausbausprache gerechtfertigt wäre. Ausserdem können sich Serben, Kroaten, Bosnier und Montenegriner immer noch auf ihren jeweiligen Nationalsprachen unterhalten und problemlos verständigen. Nur schon diese Tatsache zeigt, dass es sich immer noch um eine polyzentrische Sprache mit verschiedenen Varietäten handelt.
Following Vuk's reform of Cyrillic (see above) in the early nineteenth century, Ljudevit Gaj in the 1830s performed the same operation on Latinica, using the Czech system and producing a one-to-one symbol correlation between Cyrillic and Latinica as applied to the Serbian and Croatian parallel system.
Serbo-Croatian, which features four ethnic variants: Serbian, Croatian, Bosnian, and Montenegrin