“Izradu internetske stranice sufinancirala je Europska unija iz Europskog fonda za regionalni razvoj.” EU projekt Učka 360
Vlashki jezik

Vlashki language

The highly endangered language called the Vlashki language (vlåška limba), or according to the place of origin “brijanski”, “novošanski”, “šušnjevski”, etc. Another variation is the Zheyanski language of the village Žejane (žejånska limba). The term Istro-Romanian language is a linguistic construct indicating the historic link between the Vlashki and Zheyanski languages and the east Romance, i.e. Romanian group of languages, as the east Romance group of languages is also called. Today the Vlashki / Zheyanski language is a part of the List of intangible cultural heritage of the Republic of Croatia and it has been included in the UNESCO’s atlas of endangered languages of the world. To be more specific, in the past forty years, the natural transition of language from parents to the children was interrupted, so today the youngest native speakers are fifty years old. According to estimates from 2019, there are about seventy speakers of the language in the villages Brdo, Jesenovik, Nova Vas and Šušnjevica.


On 18 March 1930, “zona franca”, or duty-free zone, was declared in the part of the Kvarner district (It. Provincia di Carnaro). The Kvarner district encompassed the area of the city of Rijeka and its wider surroundings, including the towns Opatija with Volosko, Ičići, Ika, Lovran, Medveja, Mošćenička Draga, Matulji, Klana, and the area of the city Ilirska Bistrica, today a part of the Republic of Slovenia. The duty-free zone included only a part of the coastal territory of the Kvarner district from Rijeka to Mošćenička Draga and to Matulji. The Italians introduced this measure to stimulate the development of tourism which remained largely constant in crisis years and to make this area more competitive towards the Crikvenica and Vinodol rivieras. The consumer goods in this zone were considerably cheaper than in the rest of the Kingdom of Italy. In this new situation, the local inhabitants saw an opportunity to ensure additional income. They started to contraband – smuggle goods from the duty-free zone. The smuggled goods were transported along the mountain paths of Učka and then resold.