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Serbian language

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Serbian (Serbian Cyrillic: Српски, Serbian Latin: Srpski, pronounced [ˈsr̩pskiː]) is a South Slavic language, spoken chiefly in Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Croatia, and in the Serbian diaspora. Standard Serbian is based on the Shtokavian dialect, like the modern Croatian and Bosnian, with which it is mutually intelligible, and was previously unified with under the standard known as Serbo-Croatian. It counts among the official languages of Serbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina and among recognized languages in Montenegro, Croatia, Romania, the Republic of Macedonia and Hungary.

The alphabet used to write Serbian is a variation on the Cyrillic alphabet, that was devised by Vuk Stefanović Karadžić. The Serbian Latin alphabet is based on Ljudevit Gaj's reform.

Serbian is an example of synchronic digraphia. Both the Cyrillic and the Latin alphabet are widely used in Serbia in a large variety of contexts, and most people are literate in both scripts.

Serbian orthography is very consistent: it is an approximation of the principle "one letter per sound". This principle is represented by Johann Christoph Adelung's saying, "Write as you speak and read as it is written", the principle used by Vuk Karadžić when reforming the Cyrillic orthography of Serbian in the 19th century.

Most European linguists from outside the Balkans still regard the Serbian, Croatian, Bosnian and Montenegrin languages as just one language — Serbo-Croatian.

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