Differences between standard Serbian, Croatian and Bosnian language

Translate Serbian, Croatian and Bosnian

    Serbian (српски), Croatian (Hrvatski) and Bosnian (Bosanski) are closely related, mutually intelligible Southern Slavonic languages formerly known collectively as Serbo-Croat. They have about 18.5 million speakers, mainly in Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Montenegro.

Morphology

    There are three variants of the Štokavian dialect  that stem from the different uses of the reflexive proto-Slavic vowel Jat. The jat appears in modern dialects in the following way: the Church Slavonic  word for child, děte, is:

  • dete in Ekavian
  • dite in Ikavian
  • dijete in Ijekavian

The Serbian language recognises ekavian and ijekavian as equal variants, while Croatian and Bosnian use only ijekavian. In Bosnia and Herzegovina (regardless of the official language) and in Montenegro, ijekavian is used almost exclusively.

Ikavian is limited to dialectal use in Dalmatia, Lika, Istria, Western Herzegovina, Bosanska Krajina, Slavonia and northern Bačka (Vojvodina). So, for example:

English ekavian ijekavian ikavian
wind vetar vjetar vitar
milk mleko mlijeko mliko
to want hteti htjeti htiti
arrow strela strijela strila
But:
small arrow strelica strelica strilica

English Croatian Serbian
add by pouring* dolijevati dolivati*
diarrhea proljev proliv
gulf, bay zaljev zaliv
to influence utjecati uticati
English Serbian Bosnian and Croatian
tobacco duvan duhan
to cook kuvati kuhati
dry suvo suho
deaf gluvo gluho
English Bosnian Croatian Serbian
easy lahko lako lako
soft mehko meko meko
coffee kahva kava kafa
English Bosnian Croatian Serbian (ijekavian)
point tačka točka tačka
correct tačno točno tačno
municipality općina općina opština
priest svećenik svećenik sveštenik
male student student student student
female student studentkinja studentica studentkinja
male professor profesor profesor profesor
female professor profesorica profesorica profesorka
scientist naučnik znanstvenik naučnik
translator prevodilac prevoditelj prevodilac
reader čitalac čitatelj čitalac
diver ronilac ronilac ronilac
But:
assembly skupština skupština skupština
male president predsjednik predsjednik predsjednik
female president predsjednica predsjednica predsjednica
male Black crnac crnac crnac
female Black crnkinja crnkinja crnkinja
thinker mislilac mislilac mislilac
teacher učitelj učitelj učitelj

Phonetics

Feature Croatian Serbian English
Opposition -u/e burza berza stock-exchange
porculan porcelan porcelain
Opposition -u/i tanjur tanjir plate
Opposition -l/-o after o sol so salt
vol vo ox
kolčić kočić stick
Serbian often drops letter H in
the initial and medial position:
čahura čaura cartridge
hrvač rvač wrestler
hrđa rđa rust

Pronouns

English Bosnian and Serbian Croatian
What did he say? Šta je rekao? Što je rekao?
Ask him what he said. Pitaj ga šta je rekao. Pitaj ga što je rekao.
What he said was a lie. To što je rekao je laž. To što je rekao je laž




English Bosnian and Serbian (ijekavian) Croatian
Where will you be? Gdje ćeš biti? Gdje ćeš biti?
Where will you go? Gdje ćeš ići??
(Kuda ćeš ići?)
Kamo ćeš ići?
Which way will you go? Kuda ćeš ići? Kuda ćeš ići?



Vocabulary

Examples




English Serbian Croatian Bosnian
one thousand hiljada tisuća hiljada
January januar siječanj januar
factory fabrika tvornica fabrika
tvornica
rice pirinač riža riža
carrot šargarepa mrkva mrkva
trousers pantalone hlače hlače
pantalone
bread hleb kruh hljeb
spinach spanać špinat špinat
football fudbal nogomet fudbal
nogomet1
train voz vlak voz
wave talas val talas
val
person lice
osoba
osoba lice
osoba
uncivil nevaspitan neodgojen neodgojen
one's own sopstveno
vlastito
osobno
vlastito
vlastito
sopstveno
road put
cesta
drum
džada
cesta
put
(cesta ≠ put)
put
cesta
drum
džada
road toll drumarina
putarina
cestarina putarina
But:
dad tata tata tata
babo
tomato paradajz rajčica paradajz



English Serbian Croatian Bosnian
to accept prihvatati prihvaćati prihvatati
happy, lucky srećan
sretan
sretan sretan
to comprehend shvatati shvaćati shvatati
But:
to catch hvatati hvatati hvatati



Names of the months

English Croatian Serbian Bosnian
January siječanj januar januar
February veljača februar februar
March ožujak mart mart
April travanj april april
May svibanj maj maj
June lipanj jun juni
July srpanj jul juli
August kolovoz avgust august
September rujan septembar septembar
October listopad oktobar oktobar
November studeni novembar novembar
December prosinac decembar decembar







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