1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Romanian
  4. >
  5. What does Romanian sound like…

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SamuelCristea

What does Romanian sound like to you?

Hello! I was wondering what does Romanian sound like to foreigners?

I've been learning the language for quite some time and I feel like I've gotten used to the sound that I don't know what languages to compare it to. I know that sounds weird, but if I were to describe it: it literally sounds like a vampire language. I feel like Dracula would approve of this language (I know that Vlad Tepes is considered to be Dracula but the Dracula I'm referring to is the fictional character of who Dracula is). Try saying, "Buna, Draga" (Boo-nuh Drah-guh) with an evil voice and you'll get what I mean.

To me, it defiantly sounds similar to Italian and a lot of the words are based off of Latin but I heard people say that the accent itself sounds slavic. I personally don't feel that Romanian sounds that slavic as Russian. It's just that when I come across people they usually say it sounds Russian, like for instance when I ask a Spanish speaker they would say it sounds like a Slavic language. But I can agree that Romanian spoken in Moldova does sound more Slavic than Romanian in Romania.

But like I said before I made this discussion because I want to know what Romanian sounds like to your ears. Here is a short video of Romanian being spoken: https://youtu.be/6M4yKJa5ieQ

Once you watch the video, write in the comments what you think Romanian sounds like to you. Describe the language in great detail and whether you like how it sounds or whether you dislike it? Tell me your thoughts! Thanks.

June 16, 2017

23 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Oritteropo1

Some of the words sound Slavic, and others sound French or Italian. The overall effect, then, is very hard to describe. Perhaps I'd describe it as a cross between Polish and French.

I really like the sound though.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Fayke

It sounds very close to Italian to me (French/Dutch native), with maybe some Slavic touches in the pronunciation here and there. But the fact that I can understand entire sentences while having never learned anything in Romanian makes it sound very "latin" to me. The rhythm is probably what makes me say Italian instead of Spanish or French.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SamuelCristea

I totally agree with you!!!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Boujleba

Do you intentionally only study languages with 3 vertical stripes on duolingo? =)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SamuelCristea

Dude!!! I was expecting someone to say that one of these days! No it's just a coincidence. Jk XD


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/matfran2001

The rhythm is a bit similar to Italian, and the amount of consonant-ending words reminds me of Catalan a bit, but it has also a clear slavic flavour too (sound and words).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/piguy3

This version of the trailer has some more extended speech snippets that seem to be at a more everyday intonation. I can see why you mention Italian. I heard the "zza" sound several times. I also heard "da" a number of times, which gives it a touch of Russian feel, plus some Slavic-type hushing and fricative sounds. Particularly after listening to the trailer version I linked, I think it sounds like Catalan because there seemed to be a lot of words ending in prominent consonant sounds (particularly "t"), which reminds me most of Catalan among the Romance languages I'm familiar with. Overall, then, I'd say it sounds like someone speaking Catalan with a Slavic accent :)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JDSamurai

I just started Romanian today, and my first thought was "this is Catalan with a Slavic accent." :-) It's cool, though.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/wyqtor
  • 2122

You are right about the phonetic similarities to Catalan. Consider the following words:

foc = fire

tot = everything

bou = ox

They are exactly the same in both languages. And these are just a few that I can recall off the top of my head. Then there are other words that differ only by one sound:

nebot (ca) = nepot (ro) = nephew

pruna (ca) = prună (ro) = plum


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/piguy3

Sounds like the first person plural verb conjugations can be (well, sound; have no idea how Romanian is spelled) the same, too.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SamuelCristea

I agree with you that Romanian sounds like Catalan with a Slavic accent because most the words end with a constant sound. Thanks for the comment and telling me your thoughts. I really appreciate!! XD


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LavethWolf

To me, Romanian sounds kind of like what would happen if you combined Spanish with Bulgarian. I'm pretty sure everyone will disagree, but that's my opinion from my first few impressions with Romanian.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DragonPolyglot

Personally I think it sounds like French's and Russian's baby who grew up around Hungarian and Turkish who became the best friends Romanian moved in with, and they all kept their perks even after adopting each other's speech.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/belstar128

It sounds like a combination of latin and a west slavic language like polish


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Adriana249464

as somebody who is half Romanian, and has heard it spoken by her family her whole life, I am curious as well :P


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Nous-Nous

Sometimes it just sounds like its own thing but sometimes to me, it sounds like French with a Ukrainian Accent. This music video, her pronunciation sounds very east slavic. Lots of fricatives and zza sound as well as the hard ponunciation where the L is always in the back like in Russian(opposite to French) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n7Ol0t3_Clo&list=PLN33iQ6QXld37x5DTLS4rB1tuJEeghwTQ&index=8


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ivomoreira42

It sounds like italian, latin, but with a little bit of russian or another slavic accent. If I found a romanian talking to another, I'd probably would recognize, because, as a Brazilian, I'm familiarized with french, spanish, italian and, of couse, portuguese, my native language. To me, all these languages are easy to identify, what makes the romanian language so unique and very nice to listen to. Furthermore, the "sh", "ch" and "rrr" sounds does really make a nice combination. Something that it seems dark and rustic, but, at the same time, lovely.

Learn Romanian in just 5 minutes a day. For free.