Bosnian - interesting facts


Bosnian is the native language of about 3 million people (about 0.05% of the world's population). It ranks outside the top 100 most spoken languages in the world regarding the number of native speakers.

Bosnian is the official language of Bosnia and Herzegovina (along with Serbian and Croatian). In addition, it is recognized as the language of national minorities in Serbia, Montenegro, Macedonia and Croatia.

Bosnian belongs to the group of Slavic languages, specifically to the South Slavic subgroup. It is considered one of the four varieties of the Serbo-Croatian polycentric language. Its history coincides with the development of Serbian, Croatian and Montenegrin languages.

The Bosnian variant within the Serbo-Croatian language was isolated by linguists only in the 1970s. In 1995, Bosnian became a national language (since then the name Bosnian has been used). It was only during this period that the process of standardization and codification of this language took place.

The Bosnian language is usually written in the Latin alphabet. There is an alternative Cyrillic script, but it is rarely used in practice (mainly by Bosnian Serbs).

Bosnian has many similarities to the languages spoken in other countries of the former Yugoslavia, i.e. Serbian, Croatian and Montenegrin (the users of these four languages communicate without major problems due to their mutual comprehensibility).

Like other Slavic languages, Bosnian has a very extensive inflexion. Nouns and adjectives change by seven cases and two numbers. There are also three grammatical types. The Bosnian language is characterized by rich inflexion and complicated grammar. It has many forms of verbs, cases and types. The language is also rich in vocabulary related to the culture and history of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

An interesting feature of the Bosnian vocabulary is the occurrence of the names of the months, which are derived from Latin (similar to Serbian, and unlike Croatian, in which the names of the months are of Slavic origin).

Compared to Serbian and Croatian, another characteristic feature of Bosnian is the presence of many orientalisms, i.e. borrowings from Arabic, Persian and Ottoman Turkish. This is undoubtedly because the people of Bosnia are largely followers of Islam.
In Bosnian, there are difficult to pronounce consonant clusters. A significant challenge may be the correct pronunciation of such words as stvrdnuti ("harden") or mortno ("mortally").

The Bosnian language is an integral part of the culture of Bosnia and Herzegovina. This language plays a key role in Bosnian literature and poetry, and many works of art and films are produced in this language. Bosnian is also an important tool in interpersonal and business communication in the country, and its knowledge is essential for those who want to understand and integrate into the culture of Bosnia and Herzegovina.


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Practical Bosnian Dictionary




yes da
no ne
please molim
thank you hvala
I'm sorry oprostite
good morning dobar dan
good evening dobra večer
goodbye laku noć
good night doviđenja
hi zdravo
how are you?  Kako si?
well dobro
My name is... Zovem se…
I don't understand Ne razumijem



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