Sinte Romani
  • Sintitikes
  • Manouche
Romanes, Sinto, Sintitikes[1]
Native toGermany, Austria, Switzerland, Czech Republic, Italy, France, Netherlands, Serbia, Croatia, Romania, Bulgaria, Turkey
Native speakers
210,000 (2000–2014)[2]
DialectsAbbruzzesi, Bijale, Eftawagaria, Estracharia, Gadschkene, Kranaria, Krantiki, Lallere, Manouche (Manuche, Manush, Manuš), Piedmont Sintí, Praistiki, Serbian Romani, Venetian Sinti
Official status
Recognised minority
language in
Language codes
ISO 639-3rmo
ELPSinte Romani

Sinte Romani (also known as Sintitikes, Manuš) is the variety of Romani spoken by the Sinti people in Germany, France, Austria, Belgium, the Netherlands, some parts of Northern Italy and other adjacent regions. Sinte Romani is characterized by significant German influence and is not mutually intelligible with other forms of Romani.[4] The language is written in the Latin script.


The name Romani derives from řom, the historical self-designation of speakers of the Romani language group. Romani is sometimes written as Romany (in English), but native speaking people use the word Romani for the language. Historically, Romani people have been known for being nomadic, but today only a small percentage of Romani people are unsettled[5] due to forced assimilation and government interventions.

Sinte Romani is a dialect of Romani and belongs to the Northwestern Romani dialect group, which also includes Finnish Kalo.[6] Sinti is the self-designation of a large Romani population that began leaving the Balkans early on in the dispersion of the Romani language group, from the end of the 14th century on, and migrated to German-speaking territory.[7][8] Sinti in France typically also speak Sinte Romani but refer to themselves as Manuš (or Manouche).[8][9] Among French Sinti and Manouche people, its use has been largely superseded by a dialect of French usually known as Voyageur.[10]

Today Sinte is mainly spoken in Germany, France, Northern Italy, Switzerland, Serbia, and Croatia, with smaller numbers of speakers in Austria, the Czech Republic, and the Netherlands.[4][6][7] Sinti form the largest sub-group of Romani people in Germany, and Germany, in turn, is home to the largest number of Sinte Romani speakers.[7][8] Nearly all Sinte Romani speakers speak multiple languages, the dominant language of the country they live in being the most common.[7][11]


Sinte Romani is a non-tonal language with 25 consonants, 6 vowels, and 4 diphthongs.[7]


Example vocabulary for Sinte Romani is given below, based on samples from Austria, Italy, and Albania collected in the Romani Morpho-Syntax Database (RMS) hosted by the University of Manchester. Words that show the influence of historical German vocabulary are marked with an asterisk (*).

Sinte Romani Vocabulary[12]
Austria Italy Albania
Nouns Sinti/Roma sinto sinti gipter / sinto
non-Roma gadžo gadžo xujle
friend mal mal māl
father dad dat dād
grandmother mami nonna** mami
horse graj graj graj
dog džukel / džuklo džukal džuklo
hedgehog borso niglo* niglo*
fur hauta* xauta* hauta*
hand vast vas vas
leg heri xeri pīru
stomach buko stomako** magaker muj
heart zi zi zi
time ciro siro ciro
weather wetra* siro ciro
moon čon luna** montu*
month enja/čon monato* čon
cabbage šax kavolo** šax
egg jāro jaro jāro
butter khil kil butro**
Verbs speak rakar- rakarava rakr-
call khar- karava ker- pen
live dživ- vita** dži-
love kam- kamava kam-
Adverbs today kau dives kava divas kaldis
tomorrow tajsa tejsa tajsa
yesterday tajsa u war divas vāverdis
a little je bisla* ja pisal* pisa*
enough dosta doal doha
Adjective long laung** lungo** dur

* Words borrowed from historical German

** Words borrowed from the modern dominant languages (i.e., German, Italian, or Albanian)

See also


  1. ^ Peter Bakker, Donald Kenrick et al.: What is the Romani language? Series: Interface Collection. Centre de recherches tsiganes and University of Hertfordshire Press, Hatfield (Hertfordshire) 2000, p. 58 (ISBN 1-902806-06-9).
  2. ^ Sinte Romani at Ethnologue (19th ed., 2016) Closed access icon
  3. ^ "Welke erkende talen heeft Nederland?". Rijksoverheid (in Dutch). 11 January 2016. Retrieved 24 March 2020.
  4. ^ a b International Encyclopedia of Linguistics: AAVE - Esperanto. Oxford University Press. 14 March 2018. ISBN 9780195139778 – via Google Books.
  5. ^ Peter Bakker, Donald Kenrick et al.: What is the Romani language? Series: Interface Collection. Centre de recherches tsiganes and University of Hertfordshire Press, Hatfield (Hertfordshire) 2000, p. 44 (ISBN 1-902806-06-9).
  6. ^ a b "Varieties, Dialects, and Classification". Romani Project. University of Graz (Austria). Retrieved 2019-03-27.
  7. ^ a b c d e "Romani, Sinte". Ethnologue, Languages of the World. 15 March 2014.
  8. ^ a b c Margalit, Gilad; Matras, Yaron (2007). "Gypsies in Germany-German Gypsies? Identity and Politics of Sinti and Roma in German". In Stauber, Roni; Vago, Raphael (eds.). The Roma: A Minority in Europe: Historical, Political and Social Perspectives. Budapest: Central European University Press. pp. 103–116. ISBN 9781429462532. OCLC 191940451.
  9. ^ "Romani Dialects". ROMLEX (Romani Lexicon). University of Gratz. Retrieved 2019-03-28.
  10. ^ Nahon, Peter (2024), "The French linguistic varieties of Gypsies and Travellers: an original diastratic variation perspective", Zeitschrift für romanische Philologie, 140 (1): 30-76, doi:10.1515/zrp-2024-0002
  11. ^ Engbring-Romang, Udo (December 2016). "Romani, the Language of the Sinti and Roma: Preferably, Only Spoken". Das Goethe. Goethe-Institut. Retrieved 2019-03-27.
  12. ^ "ROMANI Project - Manchester". Retrieved 2019-03-27.


Further reading