Glottocode: roma1330

Romani is a group of divergent varieties deriving from Indo-Aryan (Indic) languages. The largest varieties are Vlax Romani, Balkan Romani and Sinti Romani. Romani is known as "romani čhib/ćhib/šib" by its speakers.

Migration and mass expulsion ensured an extremely disperse spread of Romani from its regions of origin over huge parts of the Middle East, Europe, and the Americas. Due to the wide spatial distance, the individual varieties have been exposed to strong influences of the respective umbrella language which have largely contributed to the diversification of Romani. Some Romani communities speak mixed languages based on the surrounding language with retained Romani-derived vocabulary.

Romani shows a multitude of dialects and a lack of a standardized language. Although Romani is used mainly as an oral language, some Roma do write in Romani. It is written mainly in the Latin alphabet.

Settlements represented in our collection