|Native to||Kosovo, Albania and North Macedonia|
|60,000 (2011 census)|
Area where Torlakian dialects are spoken. Number 4 (in southern Kosovo) indicates the Gora dialect area.
|South Slavic languages and dialects|
The Gorani (also Goranski) or Na?inski (literally meaning "our language") language, is the variety of South Slavic spoken by the Gorani people in the border area between Kosovo, Albania, and North Macedonia. It is part of the Torlakian dialect group, which is transitional between Eastern and Western South Slavic languages.
Spoken across the Gora region in 19 villages in Kosovo, 11 in Albania, and 2 in North Macedonia. In Kosovo and North Macedonia, it is sometimes written in either the Serbian or Macedonian Cyrillic Alphabets, whereas in Albania, the Latin Albanian alphabet is used. In the 1991 Yugoslav census, 54.8% of the inhabitants of the Gora Municipality said that they spoke the Gorani language, roughly in proportion to the number who considered themselves ethnic Gorani. In the same census, a little less than half of the inhabitants of Gora considered their language Serbian.
Related to the neighbouring Torlakian dialect varieties spoken in the Prizren-South Morava area to the northeast, also spoken in the southern half of Kosovo and in southeastern Serbia, as well as to the northernmost dialects of North Macedonia. In relation to Macedonian dialectology, it is described as having particular close links to the Tetovo dialect of the Polog and Tetovo regions, which are situated just opposite the Gora area on the other side of the ?ar Mountains.
Gorani has also been classified as a part of the Bulgarian dialect area, by Bulgarian as well as some foreign anthropologists. In 2007, the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences sponsored and printed the first Gorani-Albanian dictionary (with 43,000 words and phrases) by Goranian researcher Nazif Dokle, who considers the language a Bulgarian dialect.
On the other hand, former Yugoslav linguists Vidoeski, Brozovi? and Ivi? identify the Slavic dialect of the Gora region as Macedonian. According to some sources, in 2003, the Kosovo government acquired Macedonian language and grammar books to be taught in Gorani schools.
Gorani shares with standard Serbian, the northernmost dialects of Macedonian, and western dialects of Bulgarian, the vocalisation of earlier syllabic /l/ in words like vuk ('wolf') (cf. Macedonian volk, standard Bulgarian v?lk). With Serbian it also shares the reflex of */tj, dj/ as /t?/, as opposed to standard Macedonian /c/ (⟨?⟩). With the westernmost Macedonian varieties, as well as most of the Bulgarian varieties, it shares the reflex of "big Yus" (*//) as /?/ (?) in words like p?t ('road') (cf. Macedonian pat, Serbian put). With standard Macedonian and some Bulgarian dialects it shares the reflexes of */?, ?/ as /e, o/ in words like den ('day') and son ('dream'). With standard Macedonian, standard Serbian and some Bulgarian dialects it shares the retention of syllabic /r/ in words like krv ('blood').
The dialect makes a distinction between three genders (masculine, feminine and neuter), seven cases (nominative, genitive, dative, accusative, vocative, locative, instrumental) and two numbers (singular and plural).
Nouns have three grammatical genders (masculine, feminine and neuter) that correspond, to a certain extent, with the word ending so most nouns with -a are feminine, -o and -e neuter, and the rest mostly masculine but with some feminine. The grammatical gender of a noun affects the morphology of other parts of speech (adjectives, pronouns, and verbs) attached to it. Nouns are declined into seven cases: nominative, genitive, dative, accusative, vocative, locative, and instrumental.
Nominative: D?mà ni je ubava. Our house is good. ?o?
Genitive: D?mà ni je ubava. Our house is good. Koj?
Dative: D?m?´je ubavo. The house is fine. Komu?
Accusative: Nacrtau negua D?m?. He drew his house. Kogo?
Vocative: Dóm?, ni trebe! We need a house!
Instrumental: Ja ?ivuem so d?m?. I live with a house. So ?o?
Locative: Ja som (vo) D?má. I am at the house. ?e de?
|Nominative||d?mà, mask. (home, house)||s?lò, neutr. (village)||r?n?, fem. (wound)||d?m?||s?lá||r?n?|
|Vocative||dóm?||s?l?, sél||rán?, ráná||dóm?v?||sél?tá||r?né|