|Learn to speak Croatian|
Croatian is not an easy language to learn, as Croatians themselves will tell you. It is a Slavic language with very few borrowings from either Latin or English so it will appear very unfamiliar to western Europeans. It has several genders, a complicated grammar and inflections on the nouns as well as the verbs when changing tenses. However, mercifully for western Europeans, the written language does use Latin script and the words are written phonetically, so once you familiarises yourself with the sound of the letters, you should be able to read and pronounce the words, even if, at first, you wont know what they mean.
It is not our goal here to teach you the Croatian language, as there are books and CDs on the market which can do it far better. We would simply like to introduce the language to you. Happily, most Croatians can speak several languages very well, including English, German & Italian, but there is nothing more impolite, we think, than being a visitor to a country and not being able to speak any words of their language at all, and one should at least be able to say thank you and please. Firstly, well give you the Croatian alphabet, with their pronunciations, and then well give you the bare minimum of words that we think are essential to learn. Please note that there are no silent letters in Croatian, so all the letters in a word are pronounced, including any vowels at the end.
The Croatian Alphabet
|Alphabet ||Pronunciation ||Sounds like (letters in bold type) |
happy (with the roof of the mouth, almost a k)
right (rolled. When between 2 consonants it is ur)
|Pronunciation ||Sounds like (letters in bold type) |
The accented vowels have such subtle differences to the non-accented ones and are so rarely used we have excluded them, so as not to confuse you. Please note that browsers will not show accented letters properly without having Croatian fonts installed, which will be the case for the majority of non-Croatians. For clarity, all accented letters in Croatian place names mentioned on this website appear as just the root letter, without an accent.
SOME USEFUL WORDS & SHORT PHRASES
|English word or phrase ||Croatian |
How are you?
I like it
I dont like it
Do you speak English?
Halo! or Bok!
Dobro dosao!(m) dosla!(f)
Ja to volim
Ja to ne volim
Da li govorite Engleski?
We hope these few words will help you out a little. Good luck!