|Regions with significant populations|
|Ukraine||7,170,000 (2018) including Crimea|
(including Russian Jews and Russian Germans)
(excluding ethnic German repatriates)
|United States||3,072,756 (2009)|
(including Russian Jews and Russian Germans)
(including Russian Jews)
(Russian ancestry, excluding Russian Germans)
|Predominantly Eastern Orthodox Christianity, and Atheists Minority Judaism, Islam|
|Related ethnic groups|
|Other East Slavs (Belarusians, Ukrainians and Rusyns), Eastern South Slavs (Bulgarians, Serbs, Macedonians, and Montenegrins)|
The Russians (Russian : русские) are an East Slavic ethnic group native to Eastern Europe, who share a common Russian ancestry, culture, and history. Russian, the most spoken Slavic language, is the shared mother tongue of the Russians; and Orthodox Christianity is their historical religion. They are the largest Slavic nation, as well as the largest European nation.
The Russians were formed from East Slavic tribes, and their cultural ancestry is based in Kievan Rus'. The Russian word for the Russians is derived from the people of Rus' and the territory of Rus'. The Russians share many historical and cultural traits with other European peoples, and especially with other East Slavic ethnic groups, specifically Belarusians and Ukrainians.
Of the total 258 million speakers of Russian in the world,roughly 134 million of them are ethnic Russians. The vast majority of Russians live in native Russia, but notable minorities are scattered throughout other post-Soviet states such as Belarus, Kazakhstan, Moldova, Ukraine and the Baltic states. A large Russian diaspora (sometimes including Russian-speaking non-Russians), estimated at over 20-30 million people, has developed all over the world, with notable numbers in the United States, Germany, Brazil, and Canada.
The standard way to refer to citizens of Russia is "Russians" in English.There are two Russian words which are commonly translated into English as "Russians". One is "русские" (russkiye), which most often means "ethnic Russians". Another is "россияне" (rossiyane), which means "Russian citizens", regardless of ethnicity.
The name of the Russians derives from the Rus' people. It is not clear from whom the in West called Rus' people descended. ', like the Finnish name for Sweden (Ruotsi), is derived from an Old Norse term for "the men who row" (rods-) as rowing was the main method of navigating the rivers of Eastern Europe. It could be associated to the Swedish coastal area of Roslagen (Rus-law) or Roden , as it was known in earlier times. The name Rus' would have the same origin as the Finnish and Estonian names for Sweden: Ruotsi and Rootsi. Although Russian history and culture is shaped also by Germanic people such as the Vikings, there are also theories that Rus' is of a non-Germanic origin. According to the historian Lydia Groth, Roslagen in IX—XII centuries was unsuitable for life, as it was under water at a depth of 6–7 meters. Furthermore, the name Roslagen was first documented only in 1493. According to other theories the name Rus' is derived from Proto-Slavic *roud-s-ь ( from *rъd-/*roud-/*rуd- root), connected with red color (of hair) or from Indo-Iranian (ruxs/roxs — «light-colored», «bright»). There are also other lingual links to more southern peoples in Eurasia like the city Ruse in Bulgaria or the Elbrus in the Russian Caucasus. The word Rus' is also connected to the river Ros in Ukraine.The most prevalent theory in Germanic-speaking countries is, that the name Rus
Until the 1917 revolution, Russian authorities never specifically called the people "Russians", referring to them instead as "Great Russians," a part of "Russians" (all the East Slavs).
There are indications that today's Russia is the original home of the Russian ethnic group and various Slavic tribes.The modern Russians were formed i.a. from two groups of East Slavic tribes: Northern and Southern. These tribes included the Krivichs, Ilmen Slavs, Radimichs, Vyatiches and Severians. Genetic studies show that Russians are closest to Belarusians, Ukrainians, Poles, and other Slavs. Some ethnographers, like Zelenin, affirm that Russians overall are more similar to Belarusians and to Ukrainians than southern Russians are to northern Russians. Russians in some parts northwestern Russia share moderate genetic similarities with Baltic Finnic peoples, who lived in modern northwestern-central Russia, and were partly assimilated by East Slavs as they migrated northeastwards. The territory of Russia has been inhabited since 2nd Millennium BCE by Indo-European, Ural-Altaic, and various other peoples; however, not much is known about them. Slavic people are native to the western part of Russia. Outside archaeological remains, little is known about the predecessors to Russians in general prior to 859 AD, when the Primary Chronicle starts its records. By 600 AD, the Slavs are believed to have split linguistically into southern, western, and eastern branches.
The eastern branch settled between the Southern Bug and the Dnieper rivers in present-day Ukraine; from the 1st century AD through almost the turn of the millennium, they spread peacefully northward to the Baltic region, forming the Dregovich, Radimich and Vyatich Slavic tribes on the Baltic substratum. They developed some changed language features, such as vowel reduction. Later, both Belarusians and South Russians emerged from this ethnic linguistic ground or family.
From the 6th century onward, another group of Slavs moved from Pomerania to the northeast of the Baltic Sea, where they encountered the Varangians of the Rus' Khaganate and established the important regional center of Novgorod. The same Slavic ethnic population also settled the present-day Tver Oblast and the region of Beloozero. With the Uralic substratum, they formed the tribes of the Krivichs and of the Ilmen Slavs.
The traditional start-date of specifically Russian history is the establishment of the Rus' state in the north in 862 ruled by Vikings.Staraya Ladoga and Novgorod became the first major cities of the new union of immigrants from Scandinavia with the Slavs and Finno-Ugrians. In 882 Prince Oleg of Novgorod seized Kiev, thereby uniting the northern and southern lands of the Eastern Slavs under one authority. The state adopted Christianity from the Byzantine Empire in 988, beginning the synthesis of Byzantine and Slavic cultures that defined Orthodox Slavic culture for the next millennium. Kievan Rus' ultimately disintegrated as a state because of in-fighting between members of the princely family that ruled it collectively.
After the 13th century, Moscow became a political and cultural center. Moscow has become a center for the unification of Russian lands. By the end of the 15th century, Moscow united the northeastern and northwestern Russian principalities, in 1480 finally overthrew the Mongol yoke. The territories of the Grand Duchy of Moscow became the Tsardom of Russia in 1547.
In 1721 Tsar Peter the Great renamed his state as the Russian Empire, hoping to associate it with historical and cultural achievements of ancient Rus' – in contrast to his policies oriented towards Western Europe. The state now extended from the eastern borders of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth to the Pacific Ocean, and became a great power; and one of the most powerful states in Europe after the victory over Napoleon. Peasant revolts were common, and all were fiercely suppressed. The Emperor Alexander II abolished Russian serfdom in 1861, but the peasants fared poorly and revolutionary pressures grew. In the following decades, reform efforts such as the Stolypin reforms of 1906–1914, the constitution of 1906, and the State Duma (1906–1917) attempted to open and liberalize the economy and political system, but the Emperors refused to relinquish autocratic rule and resisted sharing their power.
A combination of economic breakdown, war-weariness, and discontent with the autocratic system of government triggered revolution in Russia in 1917. The overthrow of the monarchy initially brought into office a coalition of liberals and moderate socialists, but their failed policies led to seizure of power by the communist Bolsheviks on 25 October 1917 (7 November New Style). In 1922, Soviet Russia, along with Soviet Ukraine, Soviet Belarus, and the Transcaucasian SFSR signed the Treaty on the Creation of the USSR, officially merging all four republics to form the Soviet Union as a country. Between 1922 and 1991 the history of Russia became essentially the history of the Soviet Union, effectively an ideologically-based state roughly conterminous with the Russian Empire before the 1918 Treaty of Brest-Litovsk. From its first years, government in the Soviet Union-based itself on the one-party rule of the Communists, as the Bolsheviks called themselves, beginning in March 1918. The approach to the building of socialism, however, varied over different periods in Soviet history: from the mixed economy and diverse society and culture of the 1920s through the command economy and repressions of the Joseph Stalin era to the "era of stagnation" from the 1960s to the 1980s. During this period, Soviet Union won the World War II, becoming a superpower opposing Western countries in the Cold War. The USSR was successful in the space program, launching the first man into space.
By the mid-1980s, with the weaknesses of Soviet economic and political structures becoming acute, Mikhail Gorbachev embarked on major reforms, which eventually led to the overthrowal of the communist party and the breakup of the USSR, leaving Russia again on its own and marking the start of the history of post-Soviet Russia. The Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic renamed itself as the Russian Federation and became one of the several successors to the Soviet Union.
Ethnic Russians historically migrated throughout the area of former Russian Empire and Soviet Union, sometimes encouraged to re-settle in borderlands by the Tsarist and later Soviet government.On some occasions, ethnic Russian communities, such as Lipovans who settled in the Danube delta or Doukhobors in Canada, emigrated as religious dissidents fleeing the central authority.
After the Russian Revolution and Russian Civil War starting in 1917, many Russians were forced to leave their homeland fleeing the Bolshevik regime, and millions became refugees. Many white émigrés were participants in the White movement, although the term is broadly applied to anyone who may have left the country due to the change in regime.
After the Dissolution of the Soviet Union an estimated 25 million Russians began living outside of the Russian Federation, most of them in the former Soviet Republics. In Ukraine (about 8 million), Kazakhstan (about 3.8 million), Belarus (about 785,000), Latvia (about 520,000) with the most Russian settlement out of the Baltic States which includes Lithuania and Estonia, Uzbekistan (about 650,000) and Kyrgyzstan (about 419,000). In Moldova, the Transnistria region (where 30.4% of the population is Russian) broke away from government control amid fears the country would soon reunite with Romania.
There are also small Russian communities in the Balkans, including Lipovans in the Danube delta,Central European nations such as Germany and Poland, as well Russians settled in China, Japan, South Korea, Mexico, Brazil, Argentina and Australia. These communities may identify themselves either as Russians or citizens of these countries, or both, to varying degrees.
Significant numbers of Russians emigrated to Canada, Australia and the United States. Brighton Beach, Brooklyn and South Beach, Staten Island in New York City is an example of a large community of recent Russian and Russian Jewish immigrants. Other examples are Sunny Isles Beach, a northern suburb of Miami, and in West Hollywood of the Los Angeles area.
After the Russian Revolution in 1917, many Russians who were identified with the White army moved to China — most of them settling in Harbin and Shanghai. By the 1930s, Harbin had 100,000 Russians. Many of these Russians had to move back to the Soviet Union after World War II. Today, a large group of people in northern China can still speak Russian as a second language. And Russians (eluosizu) are one of the 56 ethnic groups officially recognized by the People's Republic of China (as the Russ); there are approximately 15,600 Russian Chinese living mostly in northern Xinjiang, and also in Inner Mongolia and Heilongjiang.
Russian (русский язык, tr. russkiy yazyk) is the most spoken native language in Europe, the most geographically widespread language of Eurasia, as well as the most widely spoken Slavic language in the world. It belongs to the Indo-European language family, and is one of the living members of the East Slavic languages.
Russian is the second-most used language on the Internet after English,one of two official languages aboard the International Space Station, and is one of the six official languages of the United Nations.
Russian literature is considered to be among the most influential and developed in the world, with some of the most famous literary works belonging to it.Russia's literary history dates back to the 10th century; in the 18th century its development was boosted by the works of Mikhail Lomonosov and Denis Fonvizin, and by the early 19th century a modern native tradition had emerged, producing some of the greatest writers of all time. This period and the Golden Age of Russian Poetry began with Alexander Pushkin, considered to be the founder of modern Russian literature and often described as the "Russian Shakespeare" or the "Russian Goethe". It continued in the 19th century with the poetry of Mikhail Lermontov and Nikolay Nekrasov, dramas of Aleksandr Ostrovsky and Anton Chekhov, and the prose of Nikolai Gogol, Ivan Turgenev, Leo Tolstoy, Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Mikhail Saltykov-Shchedrin, Ivan Goncharov, Aleksey Pisemsky and Nikolai Leskov. Tolstoy and Dostoevsky in particular were titanic figures, to the point that many literary critics have described one or the other as the greatest novelist ever.
By the 1880s Russian literature had begun to change. The age of the great novelists was over and short fiction and poetry became the dominant genres of Russian literature for the next several decades, which later became known as the Silver Age of Russian Poetry. Previously dominated by realism, Russian literature came under strong influence of symbolism in the years between 1893 and 1914. Leading writers of this age include Valery Bryusov, Andrei Bely, Vyacheslav Ivanov, Aleksandr Blok, Nikolay Gumilev, Dmitry Merezhkovsky, Fyodor Sologub, Anna Akhmatova, Osip Mandelstam, Marina Tsvetaeva, Leonid Andreyev, Ivan Bunin, and Maxim Gorky.
Following the Russian Revolution of 1917 and the ensuing civil war, Russian cultural life was left in chaos. Some prominent writers, like Ivan Bunin and Vladimir Nabokov left the country, while a new generation of talented writers joined together in different organizations with the aim of creating a new and distinctive working-class culture appropriate for the new state, the Soviet Union. Throughout the 1920s writers enjoyed broad tolerance. In the 1930s censorship over literature was tightened in line with Joseph Stalin's policy of socialist realism. After his death the restrictions on literature were eased, and by the 1970s and 1980s, writers were increasingly ignoring official guidelines. The leading authors of the Soviet era included Yevgeny Zamiatin, Isaac Babel, Vladimir Mayakovsky, Ilf and Petrov, Yury Olesha, Mikhail Bulgakov, Boris Pasternak, Mikhail Sholokhov, Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, Yevgeny Yevtushenko, and Andrey Voznesensky.
The Soviet era was also the golden age of Russian science fiction, that was initially inspired by western authors and enthusiastically developed with the success of Soviet space program. Authors like Arkady and Boris Strugatsky, Kir Bulychev, Ivan Yefremov, Alexander Belyaev enjoyed mainstream popularity at the time. An important theme of Russian literature has always been the Russian soul.
| Pushkin |
| Gogol |
| Turgenev |
| Dostoevsky |
| Tolstoy |
| Chekhov |
| Bulgakov |
| Akhmatova |
Some Russian writers, like Tolstoy and Dostoyevsky, are known also as philosophers, while many more authors are known primarily for their philosophical works. Russian philosophy blossomed since the 19th century, when it was defined initially by the opposition of Westernizers, advocating Russia's following the Western political and economical models, and Slavophiles, insisting on developing Russia as a unique civilization. The latter group includes Nikolai Danilevsky and Konstantin Leontiev, the early founders of Eurasianism.
In its further developments, Russian philosophy was always marked by a deep connection to literature and interest in creativity, society, politics and nationalism; cosmos and religion were other primary subjects. Notable philosophers of the late 19th and early 20th centuries include Vladimir Solovyov, Sergei Bulgakov, Pavel Florensky, Nikolai Berdyaev, Vladimir Lossky and Vladimir Vernadsky. In the 20th century Russian philosophy became dominated by Marxism.
| Bakunin |
| Kropotkin |
| Solovyov |
| Shestov |
| Berdyaev |
At the start of the 18th century the reforms of Peter the Great (the founder of Russian Academy of Sciences and Saint Petersburg State University) and the work of such champions as polymath Mikhail Lomonosov (the founder of Moscow State University) gave a great boost for development of science, engineering and innovation in Russia. In the 19th and 20th centuries Russia produced a large number of great scientists and inventors.
Nikolai Lobachevsky, a Copernicus of Geometry , developed the non-Euclidean geometry. Dmitry Mendeleev invented the Periodic table, the main framework of the modern chemistry. Nikolay Benardos introduced the arc welding, further developed by Nikolay Slavyanov, Konstantin Khrenov and other Russian engineers. Gleb Kotelnikov invented the knapsack parachute, while Evgeniy Chertovsky introduced the pressure suit. Pavel Yablochkov and Alexander Lodygin were great pioneers of electrical engineering and inventors of early electric lamps.
Alexander Popov was among the inventors of radio, while Nikolai Basov and Alexander Prokhorov were co-inventors of lasers and masers. Igor Tamm, Andrei Sakharov and Lev Artsimovich developed the idea of tokamak for controlled nuclear fusion and created its first prototype, which finally led to the modern ITER project. Many famous Russian scientists and inventors were émigrés, like Igor Sikorsky and Vladimir Zworykin, and many foreign ones worked in Russia for a long time, like Leonard Euler and Alfred Nobel.
The greatest Russian successes are in the field of space technology and space exploration. Konstantin Tsiolkovsky was the father of theoretical astronautics.His works had inspired leading Soviet rocket engineers such as Sergei Korolev, Valentin Glushko, and many others that contributed to the success of the Soviet space program at early stages of the Space Race and beyond.
In 1957 the first Earth-orbiting artificial satellite, Sputnik 1 , was launched; in 1961 on 12 April the first human trip into space was successfully made by Yury Gagarin; and many other Soviet and Russian space exploration records ensued, including the first spacewalk performed by Alexei Leonov, the first space exploration rover Lunokhod-1 and the first space station Salyut 1 . Nowadays Russia is the largest satellite launcherand the only provider of transport for space tourism services until May 2020.
Other technologies, where Russia historically leads, include nuclear technology, aircraft production and arms industry. The creation of the first nuclear power plant along with the first nuclear reactors for submarines and surface ships was directed by Igor Kurchatov. NS Lenin was the world's first nuclear-powered surface ship as well as the first nuclear-powered civilian vessel, and NS Arktika became the first surface ship to reach the North Pole.
A number of prominent Soviet aerospace engineers, inspired by the theoretical works of Nikolai Zhukovsky, supervised the creation of many dozens of models of military and civilian aircraft and founded a number of KBs (Construction Bureaus) that now constitute the bulk of Russian United Aircraft Corporation. Famous Russian airplanes include the first supersonic passenger jet Tupolev Tu-144 by Alexei Tupolev, MiG fighter aircraft series by Artem Mikoyan and Mikhail Gurevich, and Su series by Pavel Sukhoi and his followers. MiG-15 is the world's most produced jet aircraft in history, while MiG-21 is most produced supersonic aircraft. During World War II era Bereznyak-Isayev BI-1 was introduced as the first rocket-powered fighter aircraft, and Ilyushin Il-2 bomber became the most produced military aircraft in history. Polikarpov Po-2 Kukuruznik is the world's most produced biplane, and Mil Mi-8 is the most produced helicopter.
Famous Russian battle tanks include T-34, the best tank design of World War II,and further tanks of T-series, including T-54/55, the most produced tank in history, first fully gas turbine tank T-80 and the most modern Russian tank T-90. The AK-47 and AK-74 by Mikhail Kalashnikov constitute the most widely used type of assault rifle throughout the world – so much so that more AK-type rifles have been produced than all other assault rifles combined. With these and other weapons Russia for a long time has been among the world's top suppliers of arms.
| Lomonosov |
| Lobachevsky |
| Mendeleev |
| Mechnikov |
| Pavlov |
| Kovalevskaya |
| Korolyov |
| Sakharov |
Music in 19th-century Russia was defined by the tension between classical composer Mikhail Glinka along with other members of The Mighty Handful, and the Russian Musical Society led by composers Anton and Nikolay Rubinstein. The later tradition of Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, one of the greatest composers of the Romantic era, was continued into the 20th century by Sergei Rachmaninoff, who was one of the last great champions of the Romantic style of European classical music.World-renowned composers of the 20th century include Alexander Scriabin, Igor Stravinsky, Sergei Prokofiev, Dmitri Shostakovich and Alfred Schnittke.
Russian conservatories have turned out generations of famous soloists. Among the best known are violinists Jascha Heifetz, David Oistrakh, Leonid Kogan, Gidon Kremer, and Maxim Vengerov; cellists Mstislav Rostropovich, Natalia Gutman; pianists Vladimir Horowitz, Sviatoslav Richter, Emil Gilels, Vladimir Sofronitsky and Evgeny Kissin; and vocalists Fyodor Shalyapin, Mark Reizen, Elena Obraztsova, Tamara Sinyavskaya, Nina Dorliak, Galina Vishnevskaya, Anna Netrebko and Dmitry Hvorostovsky.
| Glinka |
| Mussorgsky |
| Tchaikovsky |
| Rimsky-Korsakov |
| Rachmaninoff |
| Stravinsky |
| Shostakovich |
Since the late Soviet times Russia has experienced another wave of Western cultural influence, which led to the development of many previously unknown phenomena in the Russian culture. The most vivid example, perhaps, is the Russian rock music, which takes its roots both in the Western rock and roll and heavy metal, and in traditions of the Russian bards of Soviet era, like Vladimir Vysotsky and Bulat Okudzhava. At the same time Russian pop music developed from what was known in the Soviet times as estrada into full-fledged industry.
Russian and later Soviet cinema was a hotbed of invention, resulting in world-renowned films such as The Battleship Potemkin . Soviet-era filmmakers, most notably Sergei Eisenstein and Andrei Tarkovsky, would become some of the world's most innovative and influential directors. Lev Kuleshov developed the Soviet montage theory; and Dziga Vertov's "film-eye" theory had a huge impact on the development of documentary film making and cinema realism. Many Soviet socialist realism films were artistically successful, including Chapaev , The Cranes Are Flying , and Ballad of a Soldier .
The 1960s and 1970s saw a greater variety of artistic styles in Soviet cinema. Eldar Ryazanov's and Leonid Gaidai's comedies of that time were immensely popular, with many of the catch phrases still in use today. In 1961–68 Sergey Bondarchuk directed an Oscar-winning film adaptation of Leo Tolstoy's epic War and Peace , which was the most expensive film made in the Soviet Union.In 1969, Vladimir Motyl's White Sun of the Desert was released, a very popular film in a genre of ostern; the film is traditionally watched by cosmonauts before any trip into space. In 2002, Russian Ark was the first feature film ever to be shot in a single take. Today, Russian cinema industry continues to expand and receive international recognition.
Russian architecture began with the woodcraft buildings of ancient Slavs. Some characteristics taken from the Slavic pagan temples are the exterior galleries and the plurality of towers. Since the Christianization of Kievan Rus', for several centuries Russian architecture was influenced predominantly by the Byzantine architecture, until the Fall of Constantinople. Apart from fortifications (kremlins), the main stone buildings of ancient Rus' were Orthodox churches, with their many domes, often gilded or brightly painted.
Aristotle Fioravanti and other Italian architects brought Renaissance trends into Russia. The 16th century saw the development of unique tent-like churches culminating in Saint Basil's Cathedral. By that time the onion dome design was also fully developed. In the 17th century, the "fiery style" of ornamentation flourished in Moscow and Yaroslavl, gradually paving the way for the Naryshkin baroque of the 1690s. After the reforms of Peter the Great led to Russia absorbing Western culture; the change of the architectural styles in the country generally followed that of Western Europe.
The 18th-century taste for Rococo architecture led to the splendid works of Bartolomeo Rastrelli and his followers. During the reign of Catherine the Great and her grandson Alexander I, the city of Saint Petersburg was transformed into an outdoor museum of Neoclassical architecture. The second half of the 19th century was dominated by the Byzantine and Russian Revival style (this corresponds to Gothic Revival in Western Europe).
Prevalent styles of the 20th century were the Art Nouveau (Fyodor Shekhtel), Constructivism (Moisei Ginzburg and Victor Vesnin), and Socialist Classicism (Boris Iofan). After Stalin's death; a new Soviet leader, Nikita Khrushchev, condemned the "excesses" of the former architectural styles, and in the late Soviet era the architecture of the country was dominated by plain functionalism. After the end of the Soviet Union the situation improved. Many churches demolished in the Soviet times were rebuilt, and this process continues along with the restoration of various historical buildings destroyed in World War II. As for the original architecture, there is no more any common style in modern Russia, though International style has a great influence.
Russia's largest religion is Christianity—It has the world's largest Orthodox population.As of a different sociological surveys on religious adherence; between 41% to over 80% of the total population of Russia adhere to the Russian Orthodox Church. However Non-religious Russians may also associate themselves with the Orthodox faith for cultural reasons.
After the October Revolution of 1917, the Christian churches (ROC, other branches of Orthodoxy, Protestant and Catholic) experienced serious persecution most of the temples, monasteries and houses of worship were closed, destroyed or turned into museums, warehouses, workshops, etc., at the highest level the ideology of atheism was introduced. Non-religious Russians today still make up a large amount of Russia today. Some Russian people are Old Believers: a relatively small schismatic group of the Russian Orthodoxy that rejected the liturgical reforms introduced in the 17th century. Other schisms from Orthodoxy include Doukhobors which in the 18th century rejected secular government, the Russian Orthodox priests, icons, all church ritual, the Bible as the supreme source of divine revelation and the divinity of Jesus, and later emigrated into Canada. An even earlier sect were Molokans which formed in 1550 and rejected Czar's divine right to rule, icons, the Trinity as outlined by the Nicene Creed, Orthodox fasts, military service, and practices including water baptism.
Other world religions have negligible representation among ethnic Russians. The largest of these groups are Islam with over 100,000 followers from national minorities,and Baptists with over 85,000 Russian adherents. Others are mostly Jewish, Pentecostals, Evangelicals, Seventh-day Adventists, Lutherans and Jehovah's Witnesses.
Since the fall of the Soviet Union various new religious movements have sprung up and gathered a following among ethnic Russians. The most prominent of these are Rodnovery, the revival of the Slavic native religion also common to other Slavic nations,Another movement, very small in comparison to other new religions, is Vissarionism, a syncretic group with an Orthodox Christian background.
Football is one of the most popular sports in Russia. The Soviet national team became the first European Champions by winning Euro 1960; and reached the finals of Euro 1988. In 1956 and 1988, the Soviet Union won gold at the Olympic football tournament. Russian clubs CSKA Moscow and Zenit Saint Petersburg won the UEFA Cup in 2005 and 2008. The Russian national football team reached the semi-finals of Euro 2008. Russia was the host nation for the 2018 FIFA World Cup, the first football world cup ever held in Eastern Europe.
Ice hockey is very popular in Russia; and it won the 1993, 2008, 2009, 2012, and the 2014 IIHF World Championships. Bandy is another traditionally popular ice sport in the country. The Soviet Union won all the Bandy World Championships for men between 1957 and 1979,and some thereafter too. The Russian national basketball team won the EuroBasket 2007; and the Russian basketball club PBC CSKA Moscow won the Euroleague in 2006 and 2008. Formula One is also becoming increasingly popular in Russia.
Historically, Russian athletes have been one of the most successful contenders in the Olympic Games;ranking third in an all-time Olympic Games medal count. Larisa Latynina holds the record for the most gold Olympic medals won by a woman. Olympic gold medalist Alexander Popov is widely considered the greatest sprint swimmer in history. Russia is the leading nation in rhythmic gymnastics; and Russian synchronized swimming is the best in the world. Figure skating is another popular sport in Russia, especially pair skating and ice dancing. Russia has produced a number of famous tennis players. Chess is also a widely popular pastime. The 1980 Summer Olympic Games were held in Moscow, and the 2014 Winter Olympics and the 2014 Winter Paralympics were hosted in Sochi.
Russia, or the Russian Federation, is a country spanning Eastern Europe and Northern Asia. It is the largest country in the world, covering 17,125,191 square kilometres (6,612,073 sq mi) and encompassing more than one-eighth of the Earth's inhabited land area. It extends across eleven time zones, and has borders with sixteen sovereign nations. Russia has a population of 146.2 million; it is the most populous country in Europe, and the ninth-most populous country in the world. Moscow, the capital, is the largest city in Europe, while Saint Petersburg is the nation's second-largest city and cultural centre. Russians are the largest Slavic and European nation; they speak Russian, the most spoken Slavic language, and the most spoken native language in Europe.
Russian is an East Slavic language native to the Russians in Eastern Europe. It is an official language in Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and is used widely throughout the Caucasus, Central Asia, and to some extent in the Baltic states. Russian belongs to the family of Indo-European languages, one of the four living members of the East Slavic languages alongside, and part of the larger Balto-Slavic branch.
Slavs are a European ethno-linguistic group of people who speak the various Slavic languages of the larger Balto-Slavic linguistic group of the Indo-European languages. They are native to Eurasia, stretching from Central, Eastern and Southeastern Europe all the way north and eastwards to Northeast Europe, Northern Asia (Siberia) and Central Asia, as well as historically in Western Europe and Western Asia. From the early 6th century they spread to inhabit most of Central, Eastern and Southeastern Europe. Today, there is a large Slavic diaspora throughout the Americas, particularly in the United States, Canada and Brazil as a result of immigration.
The Tale of Bygone Years, known in English-language historiography as the Primary Chronicle or Old Russian Primary letopis or, after the author it has traditionally been ascribed to, Nestor's letopis or The letopis of Nestor, is a history of the Kievan Rus' from about 850 to 1110, originally compiled in Kiev about 1113. The work’s name originates from the opening sentence of the text, which reads: “These are the narratives of bygone years regarding the origin of the land of Rus’, the first princes of Kiev, and from what source the land of Rus’ had its beginning.” The work is considered to be a fundamental source in the interpretation of the history of the East Slavs. The Chronicle's content is known to us today from several surviving editions and codices that have been revised over the years and evince a slight degree of variation from each other.
Ukrainian, historically also Ruthenian is an East Slavic language. It is the official state language of Ukraine and one of the three official languages in the unrecognized state of Transnistria, the other two being Moldovan and Russian. Written Ukrainian uses a variant of the Cyrillic script.
The Volga is the longest river in Europe. Flowing through Central Russia to Southern Russia and into the Caspian Sea, it has a length of 3,531 km (2,194 mi) and a catchment area of 1,360,000 km2 (530,000 sq mi). It is also Europe's largest river in terms of discharge and drainage basin. It is widely regarded as the national river of Russia. The old Russian state, the Rus' Khaganate, arose along the Volga river between the late-8th and mid-9th centuries CE. Historically, it was an important meeting place of Eurasian civilizations.
Ruthenia is an exonym, originally used in Medieval Latin as one of several designations for East Slavic and Eastern Orthodox regions, and most commonly as a designation for the lands of Rus'. During the early modern period, the term also acquired several specific meanings. The ancient land of Rus was ruled by the Rurik dynasty. The last of the Rurikids ruled as Tsars of all Rus/Russia until the 16th century.
Russian literature refers to the literature of Russia and its émigrés and to Russian-language literature. The roots of Russian literature can be traced to the Middle Ages, when epics and chronicles in Old East Slavic were composed. By the Age of Enlightenment, literature had grown in importance, and from the early 1830s, Russian literature underwent an astounding golden age in poetry, prose and drama. Romanticism permitted a flowering of poetic talent: Vasily Zhukovsky and later his protégé Alexander Pushkin came to the fore. Prose was flourishing as well. The first great Russian novelist was Nikolai Gogol. Then came Ivan Turgenev, who mastered both short stories and novels. Fyodor Dostoevsky and Leo Tolstoy soon became internationally renowned. In the second half of the century Anton Chekhov excelled in short stories and became a leading dramatist. The beginning of the 20th century ranks as the Silver Age of Russian poetry. The poets most often associated with the "Silver Age" are Konstantin Balmont, Valery Bryusov, Alexander Blok, Anna Akhmatova, Nikolay Gumilyov, Osip Mandelstam, Sergei Yesenin, Vladimir Mayakovsky, Marina Tsvetaeva and Boris Pasternak. This era produced some first-rate novelists and short-story writers, such as Aleksandr Kuprin, Nobel Prize winner Ivan Bunin, Leonid Andreyev, Fyodor Sologub, Aleksey Remizov, Yevgeny Zamyatin, Dmitry Merezhkovsky and Andrei Bely.
Ukrainians are an East Slavic ethnic group native to Ukraine, which is by total population the seventh-largest nation in Europe and the second-largest among the East Slavs after the Russians. The Constitution of Ukraine applies the term 'Ukrainians' to all its citizens. The people of Ukraine have historically been known as "Ruthenians", "Little Russians", and "Cossacks", among others. The connection with the Zaporozhian Cossacks especially, is emphasized in the Ukrainian national anthem, "We are, brothers, of Cossack kin". According to most dictionary definitions, a descriptive name for the "inhabitants of Ukraine" is Ukrainian or Ukrainian people. The majority of Ukrainians are Eastern Orthodox Christians.
Slavic paganism or Slavic religion describes the religious beliefs, myths and ritual practices of the Slavs before Christianisation, which occurred at various stages between the 8th and the 13th century. The South Slavs, who likely settled in the Balkan Peninsula during the 6th–7th centuries AD, bordering with the Byzantine Empire to the south, came under the sphere of influence of Eastern Orthodox Christianity, beginning with the creation of writing systems for Slavic languages in 855 by the brothers Saints Cyril and Methodius and the adoption of Christianity in Bulgaria in 863. The East Slavs followed with the official adoption in 988 by Vladimir the Great of Kievan Rus'.
Carpathian Ruthenia, Carpatho-Ukraine or Zakarpattia Rusyn: Карпатьска Русь ; is a historic region in the border between Central and Eastern Europe, mostly located in western Ukraine's Zakarpattia Oblast, with smaller parts in easternmost Slovakia and Lemkivshchyna in Poland.
Rusyns, or Rusnaks, are an East Slavic people who speak the Rusyn language. They have also been called Ruthenians, Carpatho-Ruthenians or, incorrectly, Carpatho-Russians. Rusyns descend from an East Slavic population that inhabited the northern regions of the Eastern Carpathians from the Early Middle Ages. Together with other East Slavs from neighboring regions, they were often labeled by the common exonym Ruthenians, or by the regionally more specific designation Carpathian Ruthenians, with subgroup designations such as Dolinyans, Boykos, Hutsuls and Lemkos. Unlike their neighbors to the east, who adopted the use of the ethnonym Ukrainians in the early 20th century, Rusyns kept and preserved their original name. As residents of northeastern regions of the Carpathian Mountains, Rusyns are closely connected to, and also sometimes associated with, other Slavic communities in the region, like the West Slavic highlander community of Gorals.
European Russia, is the western and historical portion of Russia in Europe. The portion extends from Central to Eastern Europe, and spans roughly 40% of Europe's total land area, with over 15% of its total population. European Russia is home to roughly 80% of Russia's total population. It covers a land area of over 3,995,200 square kilometres (1,542,600 sq mi), making Russia the largest country in Europe, as well as the most populous country in Europe, with a population of over 113 million residents.
The culture of the Russians, along with the cultures of many other minority ethnic groups in the country—has a long tradition of achievement in many fields, especially when it comes to literature, folk dancing, philosophy, classical music, traditional folk-music, ballet, architecture, painting, cinema, animation and politics. In all these areas Russia has had a considerable influence on global culture. Russia also has a rich material culture and a tradition in science and technology.
Russian nationalism is a form of nationalism that promotes Russian cultural identity and unity. Russian nationalism first rose to prominence in the early 19th century, and became closely related to pan-Slavism, from its origin during the Russian Empire to the Soviet Union and beyond. However, Russian nationalism in contemporary discussion is either viewed as a form of ethnic nationalism or multi-racial nationalism.
The history of Ukrainian nationality can be traced back to the kingdom of Kyivan Rus of the 9th to 12th centuries. It was the predecessor state to what would eventually become the Eastern Slavic nations of Belarus, Russia, and Ukraine. During this time, Eastern Orthodoxy, a defining feature of Ukrainian nationalism, was incorporated into everyday life.
Originally, the name Rus' referred to the people, regions, and medieval states of the Kievan Rus'. In Western culture, it was better known as Ruthenia from the 11th century onwards, Its territories are today distributed among Belarus, Northern Ukraine, Eastern Poland, and the European section of Russia. The term Россия (Rossija), comes from the Byzantine Greek designation of the Rus', Ρωσσία Rossía—spelled Ρωσία in Modern Greek.
Kievan Rus' or Kyivan Rus' was a loose federation of East Slavic and Finno-Ugric peoples in Europe from the late 9th to the mid-13th century, under the reign of the Rurik dynasty, founded by the Varangian prince Rurik. The modern nations of Belarus, Russia, and Ukraine all claim Kievan Rus' as their cultural ancestors, with Belarus and Russia deriving their names from it. The Rurik dynasty would continue to rule parts of Rus' until the 16th century with the Tsardom of Russia. At its greatest extent, in the mid-11th century, it stretched from the White Sea in the north to the Black Sea in the south and from the headwaters of the Vistula in the west to the Taman Peninsula in the east, uniting the majority of East Slavic tribes.
The All-Russian nation, also known as the pan-Russian nation or the triune Russian nation is an Imperial Russian and Russian irredentist ideology which sees the Russian nation as comprising the three sub-nations Great Russians, Little Russians and White Russians, which include modern East Slavs, rather than only modern Russia and ethnic Russians.
Vladimir Petrukhin is a Russian historian, archaeologist and ethnographer, Doctor of Historical Sciences, chief research fellow of the Medieval Section in the Institute of Slavic Studies in the Russian Academy of Sciences, professor of Higher School of Economics.