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The national language is Romanian, but many of the people still speak Hungarian, German and Ukrainian. The records of Romania have been kept in Romanian, Hungarian, German, Latin, Ruthenian (Ukrainian), Russian, Turkish, Greek, and Old Church Slavonic; Jewish Records were often written in Yiddish.
Romanian was often written in the Cyrillic alphabet before 1863, when the Roman alphabet was adopted, and from 1945-1989. (Some Romanian writers used the Cyrillic alphabet as late as the 1920s.) For more information about Romanian Cyrillic see the article in Wikipedia, Romanian Cyrillic Alphabet. Modern Romanian writing with its present system of diacritic marks took several years to develop.
Romanian is in the same language family as Latin and French. Grammatically, Romanian is an inflected language. This means that the endings of words can change depending on how they are grammatically used. There are three genders in Romanian: masculine, feminine and neuter. Masculine and neuter nouns end in a consonant, in -u, short -u, short -i, and -e. Feminine nouns end in -ă, -e, -ea, -a. In the plural form, masculine nouns generally end with -i and short -i. Feminine nouns end with -e, short -i, -ale and -ele. Neuter nouns in -uri, -e, and short -i. Other consonants are ş and ţ. Q, W, and Y are often preserved in words of foreign origin.
- The words on this list may be encountered in a different form than that which is listed here. The following are endings which are commonly found:
- Plural endings: -i, -e, -le, -uri, / -d in the singular can become -z in the plural, -a can become -e. The endings meaning "of" and "for" on singular words are: -ui, -lui, -ei and -lei. For possessive plural words the endings are: -or, -lor. In addition the endings -le and -ul can mean "the".
Other Word Lists
For word lists and help researching in Romanian records, see: