Map of Bosnian, Croatian and Serbian speaking areas

Bosnian, Serbian, Croatian and Montenegrin and all are grouped under the term Serbo-Croat. Its speakers can easily understand each other, having been derived from the same language ancestry.

The map of the former Yugoslav countries shows Bosnian (dark blue), Serbian (blue) and Croat (light blue) speaking areas:

Bosnian and Croatian predominantly uses the

  • Latin script (Croat-Hrvatski) (Bosnian-Bosanski)

Serbian uses the

  • Cyrillic script (Serbian-српски)

Serbian, Bosnian and Croatian

All three are very similar and are easily understood by eachothers speakers. Bosnian and Croat can be written in the Cyrillic script although unusual. Serbian is written in the Cyrillic script.

The reason for the difference in scripts is due to Religion. Serbia is predominantly Eastern Orthodox Christian where as the Croats are Roman Catholic Christian and the Bosnians, Muslim (from the Ottoman Empire).

Latin and Cyrillic script

The Belarussian language and use of the Latin script has become more popular since the 1990 fall of the Soviet Union and Independance although Russian still seems a major language and on a par with Belarusian with its use.

Serbo-Croat Latin and Cyrillic Text Samples

Bosnian (Latin script)
Sva ljudska bića rađaju se slobodna i jednaka u dostojanstvu i pravima. Ona su obdarena razumom i sviješću i treba da jedno prema drugome postupaju u duhu bratstva.

Translation

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. (Article 1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights)

Croatian (Latin script)
Sva ljudska bića rađaju se slobodna i jednaka u dostojanstvu i pravima. Ona su obdarena razumom i sviješću i trebaju jedna prema drugima postupati u duhu bratstva.

Translation

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. (Article 1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights)

Serbian (Cyrillic script)
Cвa људскa бићa рaђajу сe слoбoднa и jeднaкa у дoстojaнству и прaвимa. Oнa су oбдaрeнa рaзумoм и свeшћу и трeбa jeдни прeмa другимa дa пoступajу у духу брaтствa.

Translation

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. (Article 1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights)

 

Serbo-Croat Latin Alphabet

 

The Serbo-Croat Latin script does not use Q or W.

It does use accents and digraphs (two letters used together), see below:

Additions to Latin Alphabet (Digraphs)

To type accents with ALT codes, hold down the ALT key, then on the numeric keypad type the three or four digits listed here. However not with laptops, ALT codes only work with the numeric keypad, NOT the row of numbers across the top of your keyboard, as on laptops.

c with acute accent
   ć      Ć  

c with caron
   č      Č  

dž digraph
           

đ with stroke
   đ      Đ  

Lj digraph
   Lj      LJ  

Nj digraph
   Nj      NJ  

s with caron
   š      Š  

z with caron
   ž      Ž  

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