ǲ̌ (titlecase form; all-capitals form Ǳ̌, lowercase ǳ̌) is the seventh letter of the Croatian and Bosnian alphabets, and the Latin forms of Serbian, Montenegrin and Macedonian, after D and before Đ. It is pronounced [d͡ʒ]. Dž is a digraph that corresponds to the letter Dzhe (Џ/џ) of the Cyrillic script used for writing the Serbian, Montenegrin and Macedonian languages. It is also the tenth letter of the Slovak alphabet.
Note that when the letter is the initial of a capitalised word (like Džungla or Džemper, or personal names like Džemal or Džamonja), the ž is not uppercase. Only when the whole word is written in uppercase, is the Ž capitalised.
In Croatian, Bosnian, Serbian, Montenegrin and Macedonian, when the text is written vertically rather than horizontally (on signs, for instance), dž is written horizontally as a single letter; in particular, dž occupies a single square in crossword puzzles. Also, in cases where words are written with a space between each letter, dž is written together without a space between d and ž. These characteristics are also shared by Lj and Nj. Similarly, when a name beginning with Dž is reduced to initial, the entire letter is initial, not just D. For example, Dženan Ljubović becomes Dž. Lj. and not D. L. This behaviour is not the case in Slovak, where it is often split into D/d and Ž/ž.
Czech does have the sound d͡ʒ, but in native Czech words it only occurs as a replacement of [t͡ʃ] before other voiced consonants. Therefore, [t͡ʃ] and [d͡ʒ] are written in native words using the same letter č. This is not possible in loanwords, and Czech adopted the Dž orthography in this case (for example džus). In this case, the two letters are always split when text is written vertically. Lithuanian and Latvian similarly use Dž without considering it a separate letter.
A Dž ligature is found in Unicode at code points 0x01C4 (uppercase, Ǆ), 0x01C5 (titlecase, ǅ), and 0x01C6 (lowercase, ǆ). The ligatures are very rarely used in digital media, which tends to favor the corresponding two-character combinations. Manufacturers of computer keyboards and typewriters for Croatian and Bosnian users typically do not provide a single key for the letter.
- Hrvatski pravopis - Slova (Croatian)
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