What writing system(s) does this language use?
Slovenian is written in its own version of the Latin alphabet, like English. Unlike English, however, Slovenian does not have the letters Q, W, X and Y. The Slovenian alphabet also includes the letters Č, Š and Ž.
Because of these differences, has 25 letters. The Slovenian alphabet is:
How many people speak this language?
Slovenian is spoken by more around 2.3 million people. Around 2 million Slovenian speakers live in Slovenia (click here to learn about Slovenia), with large Slovenian communities in the border areas of Italy (Trieste and other parts of the region of Friuli Venezia-Giulia), Croatia and Hungary. Slovenian is one of the 23 official languages of the European Union.
Slovenia is a member of the Southern Slavic group of languages and so it is closely related to Croatian, Bosnian, Serbian, Bulgarian and Macedonian. It is related also in many ways to other Slavic languages like Polish, Russian and Czech.
Where is this language spoken?
Slovenian is mainly spoken in Slovenia. There are also Slovenian speakers in neighbouring countries such as Italy (click here to learn about Italy), Croatia and Hungary as well as small immigrant communities throughout the European Union, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Serbia and the United States.
What is the history of this language?
Slovenian is a Slavic language and like all Slavic languages it evolved from a language that disappeared over 1000 years ago. The oldest distinctly Slovenian writing is from about 1000AD.
During the 16th century Slovenia was a part of the Austrian Empire. In this empire German was a dominate language and Slovenian speakers inherited and adapted many German words for Slovenian.
In recent history, during world war II, Nazis controlled the Slovenia and tried to suppress the use of the language. After the war was over Slovenia became a part of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. It was an official language of this country. When Yugoslavia dissolved and Slovenia became its own country Slovenian was made the official language.
France Prešeren is Slovenia's greatest poet. The day of his death (8th February) is a national holiday. Ivan Cankar is a famous Slovene short story writer. Both France and Ivan were featured on Slovenian banknotes before Slovenia began using the Euro in 2007.
What are some basic words in this language that I can learn?
What is a simple song/poem/story that I can learn in this language?
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