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Slovak Romanies establish their official language

Bratislava, 29.6.2008 20:55, (ROMEA/CTK)

Representatives of Slovak Romany (also called Roma, Romani, Gypsy) intellectuals today signed a declaration with which they have established the foundations of new joint rules of Romany language.

Romanies hope that the "standardised language" will widen its use at schools and help develop their culture.

"Romany language is alive and today it enters the hall of world languages," Anina Botosova, government spokeswoman for Romany affairs, told CTK when signing the declaration.

The first rules of Romany were accepted in the former Czechoslovakia during its codification in the 1970s.

"However, standardised language will be a platform upon which the language will be developed on a professional basis," Botosova said.

The standardised language is to be applied mostly in education, Botosova said.

At present, there is a number of textbooks of Romany with differing rules in Slovakia.

"The authors of the textbooks will agree and create a united grammar that will be authoritative for the creation of textbooks," Botosova said.

Thanks to the standardisation, is to be also taught at the Constantine the Philosopher University in Nitra, West Slovakia, Botosova added.

Eastern Slovak dialect of Romany has become the basis for the united language of Slovak Romanies as there is the highest concentration of Romanies in Slovakia. The dialect is spoken by about 85 percent of Slovak Romanies.

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