Romanian (limba română/român)

Romanian is a Romance language spoken by about 24 million people in Romania, Moldova and Ukraine. Romanian retains a number of features of Latin, such as noun cases, which other Romance languages dispensed with a long time ago. Romanian contains many words taken from the surrounding Slavic languages, and also from French, Old Church Slavonic, German, Greek and Turkish.

Romanian first appeared in writing during the 16th century mainly in religious texts and other documents. The earliest known text in Romanian dates from 1521 and is a letter from Neacşu of Câmpulung to the mayor of Braşov. Neacşu wrote in a version of the old Cyrillic alphabet similar to the one for Old Church Slavonic, and which was used in Walachia and Moldova until 1859.

From the late 16th century a version of the Latin alphabet using Hungarian spelling conventions was used to write Romanian in Translyvania. Then in the late 18th century a spelling system based on Italian was adopted.

A version of the Cyrillic alphabet was used in the Soviet Republic of Moldova until 1989, when they switched to the Romanian version of the Latin alphabet.

Old Romanian alphabet

This version of the Latin alphabet was used during the transition from the Cyrillic to the Latin alphabets. It is still used, though mostly in church writings.

Old Romanian alphabet

Cyrillic alphabet for Romanian (16th century - 1860)

Cyrillic alphabet for Romanian (16th century - 1860)

Modern Romanian alphabet
A a Ă ă Â â B b C c D d E e F f G g H h I i Î î J j K k
a ă â be ce de e ef ge has i î ca
L l M m N n O o P p R r S s Ș ș T t Ț ț U u V v X x Z z
el em en o pe er es șî te țî u ve ics zet

Q (chiu), W (dublu ve) and Y (i grec) are also used, but mainly in foreign loanwords.

Romanian pronunciation

Romanian pronunciation

Notes on Romanian pronunciation

Sample text in Romanian

Toate ființele umane se nasc libere și egale în demnitate și în drepturi. Ele sunt înzestrate cu rațiune și conștiință și trebuie să se comporte unele față de altele în spiritul fraternității.

A recording of this text by Georgescu Alexandru Cristian

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)

Information about Romanian | Phrases | Kinship terms | Tower of Babel | Learning materials

Links

Information about the Romanian language
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Romanian_language
http://www.kwintessential.co.uk/language/about/romanian.html

The Letter of Neacşu of Câmpulung (the first written document in Romanian)
http://www.cimec.ro/Istorie/neacsu/eng/

Online Romanian lessons
http://www.romanianlessons.com
http://www.simplyromanian.com
http://www.easyromanian.com
http://rolang.ro/Free-lessons.php

Romanian phrases
http://wikitravel.org/en/Romanian_phrasebook
http://www.bbc.co.uk/languages/other/quickfix/romanian.shtml
http://www.linguata.com/linguata/Romanian_Phrases.html

Online Romanian dictionaries
http://www.dictionare.com
http://ro-en.gsp.ro
http://dexonline.ro
http://www.dictionarroman.ro
http://dictionarromanfrancez.net
http://www.dictionar-finlandez.net/main.php?page=diconline
http://www.alcor.com.au/romanian_rhyming_dictionary.asp
http://www.dictionar.us
http://hallo.ro

Romanian Electronic talking dictionaries
http://www.ectaco.com

Online Romanian radio
http://www.rri.ro
http://www.europalibera.org
http://www.europafm.ro
http://www.kissfm.ro
http://doctorulfm.blogspot.co.uk/

Televiziunea Româna (Romanian Television - includes live online programmes)
http://www.tvr.ro

Online Romanian news
http://www.expres.ro
http://www.ziare.com
http://www.jurnalul.ro
http://www.cotidianul.ro
http://www.romanialibera.ro

Romance languages

Aragonese, Aranese, Aromanian, Asturian, Catalan, Corsican, French, Friulian, Galician, Gallo, Genoese, Guernésiais, Italian, Jèrriais, Ladino, Ladin, Latin, Lombard, Mirandese, Moldovan, Occitan, Piedmontese, Portuguese, Romanian, Romansh, Sardinian, Sicilian, Spanish, Venetian, Walloon

Other languages written with the Latin alphabet

Thanks to Adrian Homutescu and Bogdan Banu for providing material and suggestions for this page.


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