Serbian/Main Contents/Level 1/Lesson 2

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Serbian language can be hard to master for foreigners, because words tend to have different forms in different contexts, then some words can sound similar to other non related words. Serbian has, like most Slavic languages, noun cases, and verbs tend to inflect quite liberally. Good news is that Serbian uses both Cyrillic and Latin alphabets, exception among European languages. Variation of Latin alphabet that Serbian uses is shared with two other languages, Croatian and Bosniak.

Basic vocabulary and useful phrases[edit]

English Serbian
I Ја/Jâ*
You (sing.) Ти/Tî*
He Он/Ôn*
She Она/Òna*
It Оно/Òno*
We Ми/Mî*
You (pl.) Ви/Vî*
They Они/Òni (оне/òne, она/òna)*
Good morning Добро јутро/Dobro jutro
Good afternoon Добар дан/Dobar dan
Good evening Добро вече/Dobro veče
Good night Лаку ноћ/Laku noć
Thanks Хвала/Hvala
Goodbye (formal) Довиђења/Doviđenja ('till seeing)
You're welcome Нема на чему/Nema na čemu
Here you go Изволи/Izvoli (can also mean What do you want?)
You're welcome Молим/Molim (can also be used as What? and Please)
Bye Здраво/Zdravo, Ћао/Ćao (from Italian word Ciao)
Man Мушкарац/Muškarac
Woman Жена/Žena (can also mean wife)
Yes Да/Da
No Не/Ne
My name is... Зовем се/Zovem se... (lit. I call myself) or more rarely Име ми је/Ime mi je...
Water Вода/Voda
Food Храна/Hrana
I love you Волим те/Volim te or Ја те волим/Ja te volim
Next Следећи/Sledeći
Fool Будала/Budala
Hello, hi Здраво/Zdravo (also means healthy), Ћао/Ćao

*Diacritics here are used only for easier pronunciation, they are normally not used when writing Serbian

Nominative case of nouns[edit]

Serbian language has three grammatical genders (Masculine, Feminine and Neuter) and two grammatical numbers (Singular and Plural), in the past there was a third number, Dvojina used only for exactly two objects, but it is not used in modern Serbian.

Jednina/Singular[edit]

Masculine nouns in nominative usually do not have fixed ending. Student, Profesor, Radnik are all masculine nouns.

Feminine nouns have several endings -ica (Radnica), -ka (Profesorka), -kinja (Studentkinja), -a (Plaža)....

Neuter nouns usually end with -o (Vino) or -e (Dete).

Muški rod (Masculine) Ženski rod (Feminine) Srednji rod (Neuter)
Student Student + kinja = Studenkinja Víno
Radnik Radnik + ica = Radnica* Dete

* K in Radnik is lost in feminine form Radnica

Množina/Plural[edit]

When masculine nouns are in plural usually have suffix -i (Profesori) or -ovi (Gradovi)

Feminine nouns in plural loose -a and add -e onto ending

Neuter nouns when in plural replace -o and -e with -a onto end. Some nouns insert -en between word itself and ending (Ramena). Some nouns also have irregular plural, in that case -a suffix isn't applied (Uho (ear)-Uši; Oko (eye)-Oči)