In Croatian there are 7 cases and 3 genders that are used to form a noun ( imenica ). Also we distinguish masculine and feminine form. Regarding these three characteristics, only genders are invariable, while cases and numerals change depending on the word they are referring to. 

Croatian genders

There are three genders in Croatian language:

  • ženski rod (feminine gender)
  • muški rod (masculine gender)
  • srednji rod (neuter gender)

As Croatian language doesn't have articles in front of the nouns, it is harder to remember the genders of the words. In general always the starting point in declination of nouns is a case in Nominative. Try to remember the endings of nouns!

Masculine gender

Masculine gender are the nouns with ending in an consonant. 

Ending Examples
-b zub (tooth)
-g grad (city)
-nj konj (horse)
-v crv (grub)

 

enlightenedAttention!

Exception are some nouns in -a, as for example "vođa, vojvoda".

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Feminine gender

Feminine gender are the nouns with ending in -a. 

Ending Examples
-a kuća (house)
  baka (grandma)
  majica (t-shirt)

 

Neuter gender

Neuter gender are the nouns with ending in -o and -e.

Ending Examples
-o oko, selo (eye, village)
-e more, kazalište (sea, theatre)
  jaje, dijete (egg, baby)

 

Examples of all groups:

Moj grad je velik. = My city is big.

Selo se nalazi 40 kilometara od autoceste. = The village is situadet 40km far from the highway.

Hrvatska ima Jadransko more. = Croatia has Adriatic sea.

Njena majica je plave boje. = Her t-shirt is blue.

 

Singular and plural

As in many other languages, Croatian language has grammatical numbers as well. Those are singular and plural. Forming plural in the feminine and the neuter genders is very straightforward. 

Plural of feminine

The -a at the end of the word changes into -e:

Singular Plural
kuća kuće (houses)
žena žene (women)
stolica  stolice (chairs)

 

Plural of neuter

The final -o or -e in the word is always changed into -a:

Singular Plural
slovo slova (letters)
more mora (sea)
vino vina (vines

 

Plural of masculine

In most cases the plural is formed by adding an -i at the end:

Singular Plural
prijatelj prijatelji (friends)
pas psi (dogs)
oko oči (eyes)

 

Exceptions in pluralisation of masculine nouns

For masculine nouns with only one syllabe, we add the ending -ovi

Singular Plural
most mostovi (bridges
trg trgovi (squares)

 

For the word that end in an -k , the plural changes to -ci

Singular Plural
momak momci (boys)
liječnik liječnici (doctors)

 

Masculine nouns of one syllable which end with a palatal consonant (i.e. č, ć, đ, dž, š, ž, lj, nj, j) receive the ending -evi

Singular Plural
miš miševi (mouses)
muž muževi (husbands)

 

Words which end in -ac, lose the final -a and receive the ending -ci

Singular Plural
policajac policajci (policemen)
komarac komarci (mosquitos)

 

A few common words don’t follow any of these rules, which it's best just to learn by heart.

Singular Plural
čovjek ljudi (people)
brat braća (brothers)
kći kćeri (daughters)
dijete djeca (children)

 

enlightenedThere are some nouns which don't change their form when in plural, in general they indicate only one object (for ex. it can be a body part, leđa = back), or other nouns like: hlače, ljestve, vijesti, vrata, novine, usta, pluća (pants, ladders, news, doors, newspapers, mouth, lungs). On the other side some non-count nouns have only plural form, as for example scissors (nožice).

Examples

Kupila sam dvoje hlače. - I bought two pants.

Njena kuća ima četvora vrata. - Her kouse has a four doors.

Dnevno čitam troje novine. - I read three newspapers daily.

 

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