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Resources for learning Moldovan?

I'm interested in learning the Moldovan dialect of Romanian, but I can't find anywhere to study it. Does anyone have recommendations for websites, podcasts, or videos? Or should I learn standard Romanian first and then study the Moldovan dialect?

January 8, 2018

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  • 1675

Learn standard first and then the dialect. You simply won't find a lot of material out there focusing on a dialect when the core language is the same.

I learned Spanish throughout high school and college, but I became fluent after all of that, in Buenos Aires, Argentina, where they speak the so-called Rioplatense dialect, one of the most different variants of Spanish from 'standard'. By the time I was really comfortable speaking, I had absorbed all of the major traits of the dialect. Now, no matter who I speak to, whether they're Spanish, Mexican, Colombian, non-native Spanish speaker, whatever, I have traits of the Buenos Aires dialect (which is either great or terrible, depending on how you feel about it, haha.) There were definitely some additional difficulties to overcome and things to learn along the way, but they were really small in comparison to the task of understanding how the language actually functioned, which I had pretty much already taken care of.

From what I've seen and heard, the differences between the Moldovan dialect(s) and the various Romanian dialects are fewer/smaller in scope than the differences between Rioplatense and 'standard' Spanish. You should really have no problem understanding or picking up the dialect once you've gotten good enough at 'standard' Romanian to tell the difference.

All that said, you WILL, of course, have to go to Moldova if you really want to pick up the dialect.


I suppose standard Romanian it is. I was wondering, if not in English, are there any resources available in Romanian that teach the Moldovan dialect? ( most preferably the one written in the Cyrillic alphabet )


As a Romanian, I've never actually seen any materials for teaching Moldovan before and I'm 95% sure that there aren't any, at least not in Romania. I mean, honestly, we don't need to learn it anyways, since it's so close to "standard" Romanian it's hard to even think of it as a dialect. They pronounce a lot of words a bit different, but unless they mix in Russian words or something else, there's no way other Romanians won't understand them.


Moldavian does not use Cyrilic alphabet. USSR forced ROMANIANS living in SSR Moldovia to use this alphabet and to create a national identity to separe them from their origin. Immediately after the collapse of the USSR, Moldovian Republic adopted the latin alphabet. In 2013, the official language became ROMANIAN. Moldovian does not exist anymore as a separate language. Moldovian differs just a little bit in pronunciation and that's all. So if you learn Romanian you learn Moldovian too. ;)

  • 1675

I don't know of any off the top of my head, but I've never really looked. I'll give it a shot a bit later.

I'm pretty sure that the alphabet used is independent of the dialect - basically all you need to do is learn the cyrillic alphabet, which is not too hard and should only take a few weeks at most. You seem to have already done a few lessons of Russian here on Duolingo so you're probably most of the way there.

Wikipedia tells me that the only place where cyrillic is still actively used with the Romanian language is Transnistria, which primarily speaks Russian, so I doubt that there are many substantial modern learning materials out there (post-1989, anyway).

In any case, good luck!


Moldovan Romanian written in Cyrillic is only found in old Soviet signs or documents, or in very informal contexts such as YouTube comments and grafitti, pretty much.

One of my favourite Moldovan youtubers did a video on some frequently used Russian words in Moldova. Video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Fhivt4fmF4 (It's in Romanian, though)

Moldovan nationalists do sometimes use Cyrillic as well. A Moldovan band called Che-MD (They participated to Eurovision once) publish all their music videos in Cyrillic. Their channel is this one: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCYe8TdtW_nkeSGqlQ7ouq1w

Also, until very recently there used to be a version of Wikipedia written in Moldovan Cyrillic. It used to be on mo.wikipedia.org, but this link now redirects you straight to ro.wikipedia.org.


The best thing you can do to study the Moldovan dialect is get acquainted with Moldovan music :) Some artists I would recommend are Carla's Dreams, Pavel Stratan and Kapushon :)

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