As a multilingual translation agency, ITC has worked with experienced and highly qualified Croatian translators and linguists for many years in order to anticipate and satisfy the demands of our clients. We can provide quality translation services from and into Croatian for many industries.

5 million

people have Croatian as their mother tongue

3 dialects

make up the Croatian language

4 countries

have Croatian as their official language

History of the Language: Translation into Croatian

The standardized variant of Croatian is the result of various linguistic, political and historical movements. Although the history of Croatia dates back to the seventh century, the basis of its standard language dates to about ten centuries later in the medieval period. At the time, the inhabitants of these regions spoke three different dialects: Tchakavian, Kaikavian and Chtokavian. The most powerful dynasties of this period, the Zrinskis and Frankopans, wanted to create a single standardized language that would serve as the linguistic basis for a politically unified Croatia. However, the prominent figures of this movement, Petar Zrinski and Fran Krsto Frankopan, were later executed by Leopold I of the Holy Roman Empire, so their plan to establish a combined standard variant could not be realized.

In the 19th century, the Illyrian movement made a second attempt to combine the three main dialects into a single South Slavic language. The leader of this movement, Ljudevit Gaj, introduced standardized Croatian spelling based on the Latin alphabet. The dialect that he chose to create this standardized variant was one of the dominant ones, Neo-Shtokavian, which led to the creation of the Croatian language we know today.

It is also important to note that since Croatia’s integration into the European Union in 2013, Croatian is the 24th official language of the European Union.

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Specific Features of the Croatian Language

Croatian (Hrvatski) is a language mainly spoken in Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and the Serbian province of Vojvodina. Since this language shares many grammatical characteristics and much of its vocabulary with Serbian, foreigners tend to refer to these two languages as one Serbo-Croatian language. However, Croatian linguists strongly advocate that the two variants are independent linguistic entities, representing a unique cultural symbol for their respective nations.

The base structure of Croatian, its alphabet, consists of 30 letters. Some letters are actually digrams, such as , lj and nj. There are also letters using diacritics, such as č, ć and š. These have been modeled on the Polish and Czech alphabets. In addition, Croatian uses seven cases for the declension of nouns, pronouns and adjectives: nominative, genitive, dative, accusative, vocal, locative and instrumental. This language also uses three genders (masculine, feminine and neuter) and two grammatical numbers (singular and plural).

In Croatian, verbs are divided into two broad categories, depending on whether they describe an action that has been completed or is in progress. Although the basic syntax in Croatian is subject – verb – object, the rules are not as strict as in other languages, and deviations from the norm are often possible. Finally, the basic standard stress applied in standard Croatian is that of the Shtokavian dialect.

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