A Bosnian speaker, recorded in Kosovo
Bosnian 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 Montenegrin
varieties. Therefore, the Declaration on the Common Language
of, Croats, Serbs, Bosniaks and Montenegrins was issued in 2017 in Sarajevo.
Until the 1990s, the common language was called Serbo-Croatian and that term is still used in English, along with "Bosnian-Croatian-Montenegrin-Serbian" (BCMS), especially in diplomatic circles.
Table over the modern Bosnian alphabet in both Latin and Cyrillic, as well as with the IPA value:
School book of Latin and Bosnian, 1827
Bosnian Grammar, 1890
Old Bosnian alphabets: bosančica
(top line) and arebica
(bottom line), compared with contemporary latinica
Although Bosnians are, at the level of vernacular idiom
, linguistically more homogeneous than either Serbians or Croatians, unlike those nations they failed to codify
a standard language in the 19th century, with at least two factors being decisive:
- The Bosnian elite, as closely intertwined with Ottoman life, wrote predominantly in foreign (Turkish, Arabic, Persian) languages.Vernacular literature written in Bosnian with the Arebica script was relatively thin and sparse.
- The Bosnians' national emancipation lagged behind that of the Serbs and Croats, and because denominational rather than cultural or linguistic issues played the pivotal role, a Bosnian language project did not arouse much interest or support amongst the intelligentsia of the time.
The modern Bosnian standard took shape in the 1990s and 2000s. Lexically, Islamic-Oriental loanwords are more frequent; phonetically: the phoneme /x/ (letter h
) is reinstated in many words as a distinct feature of vernacular
Bosniak speech and language tradition; also, there are some changes in grammar, morphology and orthography that reflect the Bosniak pre-World War I
literary tradition, mainly that of the Bosniak renaissance at the beginning of the 20th century.
Controversy and recognition
A cigarette warning
"Smoking seriously harms you and others around you", ostensibly in three languages. The "Bosnian" and "Croatian" versions are identical and the "Serbian" is a transliteration
of the same.
The name "Bosnian language" is a controversial issue for some Croats
, who also refer to it as the "Bosniak" language (Serbo-Croatian
/ бошњачки; [bǒʃɲaːtʃkiː]
). Bosniak linguists however insist that the only legitimate name is "Bosnian" language (bosanski
), and that that is the name that both Croats and Serbs should use. The controversy arises because the name "Bosnian" may seem to imply that it is the language of all Bosnians, while Bosnian Croats
reject that designation for their idioms.
The language is called Bosnian language
in the 1995 Dayton Accords
and is concluded by observers to have received legitimacy and international recognition at the time.
Most English-speaking language encyclopedias (Routledge
register the language solely as "Bosnian" language. The Library of Congress registered the language as "Bosnian" and gave it an ISO-number. The Slavic language institutes in English-speaking countries offer courses in "Bosnian" or "Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian" language, not in "Bosniak" language (e.g. Columbia,
). The same thing in German-speaking countries, where the language is taught under the name Bosnisch
, not Bosniakisch
with very few exceptions.
The majority of Serbian linguists hold that the term Bosniak language
is the only one appropriate,
which was agreed as early as 1990.
The constitution of Republika Srpska
, the Serb-dominated entity within Bosnia and Herzegovina, did not recognize any language or ethnic group other than Serbian.
Bosniaks were mostly expelled from the territory controlled by the Serbs from 1992, but immediately after the war they demanded the restoration of their civil rights in those territories. The Bosnian Serbs refused to make reference to the Bosnian language in their constitution and as a result had constitutional amendments imposed by High RepresentativeWolfgang Petritsch
. However, the constitution of Republika Srpska
refers to it as the Language spoken by Bosniaks
because the Serbs were required to recognise the language officially, but wished to avoid recognition of its name.
Serbia includes the Bosnian language as an elective subject in primary schools.Montenegro
officially recognizes the Bosnian language: its 2007 Constitution
specifically states that although Montenegrin
is the official language, Serbian, Bosnian, Albanian and Croatian are also in official use.
Historical usage of the term
- In the work Skazanie izjavljenno o pismeneh that was written between 1423 and 1426, the Bulgarian chronicler Constantine the Philosopher, in parallel with the Bulgarian, Serbian, Slovenian, Czech and Croatian, he also mentions the Bosnian language.
- The notary book of the town of Kotor from July 3, 1436 recounts a duke buying a girl that is described as a: "Bosnian woman, heretic and in the Bosnian language called Djevena".
- The work Thesaurus Polyglottus, published in Frankfurt am Main in 1603 by the German historian and linguist Hieronymus Megiser, mentions the Bosnian dialect alongside the Dalmatian, Croatian and Serbian one.
- The Bosnian Franciscan Matija Divković, regarded as the founder of the modern literature of Bosnia and Herzegovina, asserts in his work "Nauk krstjanski za narod slovinski" ("The Christian doctrine for the Slavic peoples") from 1611 his "translation from Latin to the real and true Bosnian language" ("A privideh iz dijačkog u pravi i istinit jezik bosanski")
- Bosniak poet and Aljamiado writer Muhamed Hevaji Uskufi Bosnevi who refers to the language of his 1632 dictionary Magbuli-arif as Bosnian.
- One of the first grammarians, the Jesuit clergyman Bartolomeo Cassio calls the language used in his work from 1640 Ritual rimski (Roman Rite) as naški ("our language") or bosanski ("Bosnian"). He used the term "Bosnian" even though he was born in a Chakavian region: instead he decided to adopt a "common language" (lingua communis) based on a version of ShtokavianIkavian.
- The Italian linguist Giacomo Micaglia (1601–1654) who states in his dictionary Blagu jezika slovinskoga (Thesaurus lingue Illyricae) from 1649 that he wants to include "the most beautiful words" adding that "of all Illyrian languages the Bosnian is the most beautiful", and that all Illyrian writers should try to write in that language.
- 18th century Bosniak chronicler Mula Mustafa Bašeskija who argues in his yearbook of collected Bosnian poems that the "Bosnian language" is much richer than the Arabic, because there are 45 words for the verb "to go" in Bosnian.
- The Venetian writer, naturalist and cartographer Alberto Fortis (1741–1803) calls in his work Viaggio in Dalmazia (Travels into Dalmatia) the language of Morlachs as Illyrian, Morlach and Bosnian.
- The Croatian writer and lexicographer Matija Petar Katančić published six volumes of biblical translations in 1831 described as being "transferred from Slavo-Illyrian to the pronunciation of the Bosnian language".
- Croatian writer Matija Mažuranić refers in the work Pogled u Bosnu (1842) to the language of Bosnians as Illyrian (a 19th-century synonym to South Slavic languages) mixed with Turkish words, with a further statement that they are the speakers of the Bosniak language.
- The Bosnian Franciscan Ivan Franjo Jukić states in his work Zemljopis i Poviestnica Bosne (1851) that Bosnia was the only Turkish land (i.e. under the control of the Ottoman Empire) that remained entirely pure without Turkish speakers, both in the villages and so on the highlands. Further he states "[...] a language other than the Bosnian is not spoken [in Bosnia], the greatest Turkish [i.e. Muslim] gentlemen only speak Turkish when they are at the Vizier".
- Ivan Kukuljević Sakcinski, a 19th-century Croatian writer and historian, stated in his work Putovanje po Bosni (Travels into Bosnia) from 1858, how the 'Turkish' (i.e. Muslim) Bosniaks, despite converting to the Muslim faith, preserved their traditions and the Slavic mood, and that they speak the purest variant of the Bosnian language, by refusing to add Turkish word to their vocabulary.
Differences between Bosnian, Croatian and Serbian The differences between the Bosnian, Serbian, and Croatian literary standards are minimal. Although Bosnian employs more Turkish, Persian, and Arabic loanwords—commonly called orientalisms— mainly in its spoken variety, it is very similar, to both Serbian and Croatian in its written and spoken form.
"Lexical differences between the ethnic variants are extremely limited, even when compared with those between closely related Slavic languages (such as standard Czech and Slovak, Bulgarian and Macedonian), and grammatical differences are even less pronounced. More importantly, complete understanding between the ethnic variants of the standard language makes translation and second language teaching impossible."
The Bosnian language, as a new normative register of the Shtokavian dialect, was officially introduced in 1996 with the publication of Pravopis bosanskog jezika
in Sarajevo. According to that work, Bosnian differed from Serbian and Croatian on some main linguistic characteristics, such as: sound formats in some words, especially "h" (kahva
versus Serbian kafa
); substantial and deliberate usage of Oriental ("Turkish") words; spelling of future tense (kupit ću
) as in Croatian but not Serbian (kupiću
) (both forms have the same pronunciation).[better source needed]
2018, in the new issue of Pravopis bosanskog jezika
, words without "h" are accepted due to their prevalence in language practice.
Nationality rather than an ethnic identity.
- ^ "Accredited Language Services: An Outline of Bosnian Language History". Accredited Language Services. Archived from the original on 1 August 2016. Retrieved 12 August 2012.
- ^ Alexander 2006, pp. 1–2.
- ^ David Dalby, Linguasphere (1999/2000, Linguasphere Observatory), p. 445, 53-AAA-g, "Srpski+Hrvatski, Serbo-Croatian".
- ^ Benjamin V. Fortson, IV, Indo-European Language and Culture: An Introduction, 2nd ed. (2010, Blackwell), p. 431, "Because of their mutual intelligibility, Serbian, Croatian, and Bosnian are usually thought of as constituting one language called Bosnian-Croatian-Serbian."
- ^ Václav Blažek, "On the Internal Classification of Indo-European Languages: Survey" retrieved 20 Oct 2010, pp. 15–16.
- ^ See Art. 6 of the Constitution of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, available at the official website of Office of the High Representative in Bosnia and Herzegovina
- ^ "European charter for regional or minority languages: Application of the charter in Serbia"(PDF). Council of Europe. 2009. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2014-01-03.
- ^ a b "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2009-06-17. Retrieved 2009-03-18. See Art. 13 of the Constitution of the Republic of Montenegro, adopted on 19 October 2007, available at the website of the Ministry of Justice of the Republic of Montenegro
- ^ Driton Muharremi and Samedin Mehmeti (2013). Handbook on Policing in Central and Eastern Europe. Springer. p. 129. ISBN 9781461467205.
- ^ Tomasz Kamusella (15 January 2009). The Politics of Language and Nationalism in Modern Central Europe. Palgrave Macmillan. ISBN 978-0-230-55070-4. In addition, today, neither Bosniaks nor Croats, but only Serbs use Cyrillic in Bosnia.
- ^ Algar, Hamid (2 July 1994). Persian Literature in Bosnia-Herzegovina. Journal of Islamic Studies. Oxford. pp. 254–68.
- ^ Balić, Smail (1978). Die Kultur der Bosniaken, Supplement I: Inventar des bosnischen literarischen Erbes in orientalischen Sprachen. Vienna: Adolf Holzhausens, Vienna. p. 111.
- ^ Balić, Smail (1992). Das unbekannte Bosnien: Europas Brücke zur islamischen Welt. Cologne, Weimar and Vienna: Bohlau. p. 526.
- ^ Nosovitz, Dan (11 February 2019). "What Language Do People Speak in the Balkans, Anyway?". Atlas Obscura. Archived from the original on 11 February 2019. Retrieved 6 May 2019.
- ^ Zanelli, Aldo (2018). Eine Analyse der Metaphern in der kroatischen Linguistikfachzeitschrift Jezik von 1991 bis 1997 [Analysis of Metaphors in Croatian Linguistic Journal Language from 1991 to 1997]. Studien zur Slavistik ; 41 (in German). Hamburg: Kovač. pp. 21, 83. ISBN 978-3-8300-9773-0. OCLC 1023608613. (NSK). (FFZG)
- ^ Radio Free Europe – Serbian, Croatian, Bosnian, Or Montenegrin? Or Just 'Our Language'? Živko Bjelanović: Similar, But Different, Feb 21, 2009, accessed Oct 8, 2010
- ^ "Collection of printed books in Arabic, Turkish and Persian". Gazi Husrev-begova biblioteka. 2014-05-16. Archived from the original on 2014-05-17. Retrieved 2014-05-16.
- ^ Alexander 2006, p. 409.
- ^ Greenberg, Robert D. (2004). Language and Identity in the Balkans: Serbo-Croatian and Its Disintegration. Oxford University Press. p. 136. ISBN 9780191514555.
- ^ "ISO 639-2 Registration Authority". Library of Congress.
- ^ Sussex, Roland (2006). The Slavic Languages. Cambridge University Press. pp. 76. ISBN 0-521-22315-6.
- ^ "Bosnian". Glottolog.
- ^ "Bosnian". Ethnologue.
- ^ Bernard Comrie (ed.): The World's Major Languages. Second Edition. Routledge, New York/London, 2009
- ^ "Spring 2016 Bosnian-Croatian-Serbian W1202 section 001". Columbia University. Archived from the original on 2016-01-28.
- ^ "BCS 1133 – Continuing Bosnian-Croatian-Serbian I – Acalog ACMS™". Cornell University.
- ^ "Courses". University of Chicago.
- ^ "Bosnian Croatian Serbian". University of Washington.
- ^ "Why Study Bosnian, Croatian, Serbian (BCS) with the KU Slavic Department?". University of Kansas. 2012-12-18.
- ^ "Institut für Slawistik » Curricula". University of Vienna.
- ^ "Bosnisch/Kroatisch/Serbisch". University of Graz. Archived from the original on 2016-07-03. Retrieved 2015-08-26.
- ^ "Slavistik – Bosnisch-Kroatisch-Montenegrinisch-Serbisch". University of Trier. 28 July 2015.
- ^ Central Bureau of Statistics of the Republic of Croatia Census of 2001, Population by native language
- ^ Central Bureau of Statistics of the Republic of Croatia, Census of 2011, Population by native language, retrieved January 19, 2014
- ^ "[Projekat Rastko] Odbor za standardizaciju srpskog jezika". rastko.rs.
- ^ Svein Mønnesland, »Language Policy in Bosnia-Herzegovina«, (pp 135–155.). In: Language : Competence–Change–Contact = Sprache : Kompetenz – Kontakt – Wandel, edited by: Annikki Koskensalo, John Smeds, Rudolf de Cillia, Ángel Huguet; Berlin ; Münster : Lit Verlag, 2012., ISBN 978-3-643-10801-2, p. 143. "Already in 1990 the Committee for the Serbian language decided that only the term 'Bosniac language' should be used officially in Serbia, and this was confirmed in 1998."
- ^ "Constitution of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina". High Representative for Bosnia and Herzegovina. Archived from the original on 1 March 2002. Retrieved 3 June 2010.
- ^ Decision on Constitutional Amendments in the Federation, High Representative for Bosnia and Herzegovina, archived from the original on May 13, 2002, retrieved January 19, 2014
- ^ Washington Agreement (PDF), retrieved January 19, 2014
- ^ "The Constitution of the Republika Srpska". U.S. English Foundation Research. Archived from the original on 21 July 2011. Retrieved 3 June 2010.
- ^ "Decision on Constitutional Amendments in Republika Srpska". High Representative for Bosnia and Herzegovina. Archived from the original on 18 January 2012. Retrieved 3 June 2010.
- ^ Greenberg, Robert David (2004). Language and Identity in the Balkans: Serbo-Croatian and its Disintegration. Oxford University Press. pp. 156. ISBN 0-19-925815-5.
- ^ Rizvanovic, Alma (2 August 2005). "Language Battle Divides Schools". Institute for War & Peace Reporting. Retrieved 3 June 2010.
- ^ "Crna Gora dobila novi Ustav". Cafe del Montenegro. 20 October 2007. Archived from the original on 2007-10-21. Retrieved 12 August 2017.
- ^ a b Muhsin Rizvić (1996). Bosna i Bošnjaci: Jezik i pismo (PDF). Sarajevo: Preporod. p. 6.
- ^ Aleksandar Solovjev, Trgovanje bosanskim robljem do god. 1661. - Glasnik Zemaljskog muzeja, N. S., 1946, 1, 151.
- ^ V. Putanec, Leksikografija, Enciklopedija Jugoslavije, V, 1962, 504.
- ^ Muhsin Rizvić (1996). Bosna i Bošnjaci: Jezik i pismo (PDF). Sarajevo: Preporod. p. 7.
- ^ Ivan Lovrenović (2012-01-30). "DIVKOVIĆ: OTAC BOSANSKE KNJIŽEVNOSTI, PRVI BOSANSKI TIPOGRAF". IvanLovrenovic.com. Archived from the original on 12 July 2012. Retrieved 30 August 2012.
- ^ hrvatska-rijec.com (17 April 2011). "Matija Divković – otac bosanskohercegovačke i hrvatske književnosti u BiH" (in Serbo-Croatian). www.hrvatska-rijec.com. Archived from the original on 17 January 2012. Retrieved 30 August 2012.
- ^ a b Muhsin Rizvić (1996). Bosna i Bošnjaci: Jezik i pismo (PDF). Sarajevo: Preporod. p. 24.
- ^ "ALJAMIADO AND ORIENTAL LITERATURE IN BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA (1463-1878)"(PDF). pozitiv.si. Archived from the original(PDF) on 2014-02-02.
- ^ a b Muhsin Rizvić (1996). Bosna i Bošnjaci: Jezik i pismo (PDF). Sarajevo: Preporod. p. 8.
- ^ a b Vatroslav Jagić, Iz prošlost hrvatskog jezika. Izabrani kraći spisi. Zagreb, 1948, 49.
- ^ Alberto Fortis (1774). Viaggo in Dalmazia. I. Venice: Presso Alvise Milocco, all' Appoline, MDCCLXXIV. pp. 91–92.
- ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-04-25. Retrieved 2014-01-09.
- ^ Matija Mažuranić (1842). Pogled u Bosnu. Zagreb: Tiskom narodne tiskarnice dra, Lj. Gaja. p. 52.
- ^ Ivan Franjo Jukić (Slavoljub Bošnjak) (1851). Pogled u Bosnu. Zagreb: Bérzotiskom narodne tiskarnice dra. Ljudevita Gaja. p. 16.
- ^ Ivan Kukuljević Sakcinski (1858). Putovanje po Bosni. Zagreb: Tiskom narodne tiskarnice dra, Lj. Gaja. p. 114.
- ^ "Serbian, Croatian, Bosnian, Or Montenegrin? Or Just 'Our Language'?". Radio Free Europe.
- ^ Šipka, Danko (2019). Lexical layers of identity: words, meaning, and culture in the Slavic languages. New York: Cambridge University Press. p. 166. doi:10.1017/9781108685795. ISBN 978-953-313-086-6. LCCN 2018048005. OCLC 1061308790.
- ^ Sotirović 2014, p. 48.
- ^ Halilović, Senahid (26 April 2018). "Halilović za N1: Dužni smo osluškivati javnu riječ" [Halilović for N1: We Have to Listen to the Public Word]. TV show N1 na jedan (host Nikola Vučić) (in Serbo-Croatian). Sarajevo: N1 (TV channel). Retrieved 26 November 2019. (6-13 minute)
Sources and further reading
- Alexander, Ronelle (2006). Bosnian, Croatian, Serbian, a Grammar: With Sociolinguistic Commentary. pp. 1–2. ISBN 9780299211936.
- Gröschel, Bernhard (2001). "Bosnisch oder Bosniakisch?" [Bosnian or Bosniak?]. In Waßner, Ulrich Hermann (ed.). Lingua et linguae. Festschrift für Clemens-Peter Herbermann zum 60. Geburtstag. Bochumer Beitraäge zur Semiotik, n.F., 6 (in German). Aachen: Shaker. pp. 159–188. ISBN 978-3-8265-8497-8. OCLC 47992691.
- Kafadar, Enisa (2009). "Bosnisch, Kroatisch, Serbisch – Wie spricht man eigentlich in Bosnien-Herzegowina?" [Bosnian, Croatian, Serbian – How do people really speak in Bosnia-Herzegovina?]. In Henn-Memmesheimer, Beate; Franz, Joachim (eds.). Die Ordnung des Standard und die Differenzierung der Diskurse; Teil 1 (in German). Frankfurt am Main: Peter Lang. pp. 95–106. ISBN 9783631599174. OCLC 699514676.
- Kordić, Snježana (2005). "I dalje jedan jezik" [Still one language]. Sarajevske Sveske (in Serbo-Croatian). Sarajevo (10): 83–89. ISSN 1512-8539. SSRN 3432980. CROSBI 430085. ZDB-ID 2136753-X. Archived from the original on 21 September 2013. Retrieved 22 August 2014. (COBISS-BH).
- —— (2011). "Jezična politika: prosvjećivati ili zamagljivati?" [Language policy: to clarify or to obscure?] (PDF). In Gavrić, Saša (ed.). Jezička/e politika/e u Bosni i Hercegovini i njemačkom govornom području: zbornik radova predstavljenih na istoimenoj konferenciji održanoj 22. marta 2011. godine u Sarajevu (in Serbo-Croatian). Sarajevo: Goethe-Institut Bosnien und Herzegowina ; Ambasada Republike Austrije ; Ambasada Švicarske konfederacije. pp. 60–66. ISBN 978-9958-1959-0-7. OCLC 918205883. SSRN 3434489. CROSBI 565627. Archived (PDF) from the original on 30 March 2013. (ÖNB).
- Sotirović, V.B. (2014). "Bosnian Language and ITS Inauguration: The Fate of the Former Serbocroat or Croatoserb Language". Sustainable Multilingualism. 3 (3): 47–61. doi:10.7220/2335-2027.3.5.
- This article incorporates public domain material from the CIA World Factbook document: "2006 edition".
Wikivoyage has a phrasebook for Bosnian
Last edited on 26 April 2021, at 16:45
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