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Languages of Russia

Languages of Russia

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Of all the languages of Russia
Russia
Russia or , officially known as both Russia and the Russian Federation , is a country in northern Eurasia. It is a federal semi-presidential republic, comprising 83 federal subjects...

, Russian
Russian language
Russian is a Slavic language used primarily in Russia, Belarus, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan. It is an unofficial but widely spoken language in Ukraine, Moldova, Latvia, Turkmenistan and Estonia and, to a lesser extent, the other countries that were once constituent republics...

 is the only official language. 27 different languages are considered official languages in various regions of Russia, along with Russian. There are over 100 minority languages spoken in Russia today.

History


Russian was the sole official language of the Russian Empire
Russian Empire
The Russian Empire was a state that existed from 1721 until the Russian Revolution of 1917. It was the successor to the Tsardom of Russia and the predecessor of the Soviet Union...

 which existed until 1917. During the Soviet
Soviet Union
The Soviet Union , officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , was a constitutionally socialist state that existed in Eurasia between 1922 and 1991....

 period, the policy toward the languages of the various other ethnic groups fluctuated in practice. The state helped develop alphabet
Alphabet
An alphabet is a standard set of letters—basic written symbols or graphemes—each of which represents a phoneme in a spoken language, either as it exists now or as it was in the past. There are other systems, such as logographies, in which each character represents a word, morpheme, or semantic...

s and grammar
Grammar
In linguistics, grammar is the set of structural rules that govern the composition of clauses, phrases, and words in any given natural language. The term refers also to the study of such rules, and this field includes morphology, syntax, and phonology, often complemented by phonetics, semantics,...

 for various languages across the country that had previously been lacking a written form. Though each of the constituent republics had its own official language, the unifying role and superior status was reserved for Russian.

Russian lost its status in many of the new republics that arose following the 1991 dissolution of the Soviet Union
Dissolution of the Soviet Union
The dissolution of the Soviet Union was the disintegration of the federal political structures and central government of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , resulting in the independence of all fifteen republics of the Soviet Union between March 11, 1990 and December 25, 1991...

. In Russia, however, the dominating status of the Russian language continued. Today, 97% of the public school students of Russia receive their education only or mostly in Russian, even though Russia is made up of approximately 80% ethnic Russians
Russians
The Russian people are an East Slavic ethnic group native to Russia, speaking the Russian language and primarily living in Russia and neighboring countries....

.

Official languages


Although Russian
Russian language
Russian is a Slavic language used primarily in Russia, Belarus, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan. It is an unofficial but widely spoken language in Ukraine, Moldova, Latvia, Turkmenistan and Estonia and, to a lesser extent, the other countries that were once constituent republics...

 is the only federally official language
Official language
An official language is a language that is given a special legal status in a particular country, state, or other jurisdiction. Typically a nation's official language will be the one used in that nation's courts, parliament and administration. However, official status can also be used to give a...

 of the Russian Federation, there are several other officially-recognized languages within Russia's various constituencies – Constitution of Russia only allows the republics to establish official languages other than Russian. This is a list of languages that are official only in certain parts of Russia
Russia
Russia or , officially known as both Russia and the Russian Federation , is a country in northern Eurasia. It is a federal semi-presidential republic, comprising 83 federal subjects...

 (the language family in which the language belongs is given in parentheses).
  1. Abaza
    Abaza language
    The Abaza language is a language of the Caucasus mountains in the Russian Karachay-Cherkess Republic by the Abazins...

     (Northwest Caucasian
    Northwest Caucasian languages
    The Northwest Caucasian languages, also called Abkhazo-Adyghean, or sometimes Pontic as opposed to Caspian for the Northeast Caucasian languages, are a group of languages spoken in the Caucasus region, chiefly in Russia , the disputed territory of Abkhazia, and Turkey, with smaller communities...

    ; in the  Karachay-Cherkess Republic
    Karachay-Cherkessia
    The Karachay-Cherkess Republic , or Karachay-Cherkessia is a federal subject of Russia . Population: -Geography:*Area: *Borders:**internal: Krasnodar Krai , Kabardino-Balkar Republic , Stavropol Krai ....

    )
  2. Adyghe
    Adyghe language
    Adyghe language , also known as West Circassian , is one of the two official languages of the Republic of Adygea in the Russian Federation, the other being Russian. It is spoken by various tribes of the Adyghe people: Abzekh, Adamey, Bzhedugh; Hatukuay, Kemirgoy, Makhosh; Natekuay, Shapsigh; Zhane,...

     (Northwest Caucasian
    Northwest Caucasian languages
    The Northwest Caucasian languages, also called Abkhazo-Adyghean, or sometimes Pontic as opposed to Caspian for the Northeast Caucasian languages, are a group of languages spoken in the Caucasus region, chiefly in Russia , the disputed territory of Abkhazia, and Turkey, with smaller communities...

    ; in the  Republic of Adygea)
  3. Altay
    Altay language
    Altay is a language of the Turkic group of languages. It is an official language of Altai Republic, Russia. The language was called Oyrot prior to 1948. There were ca...

     (Turkic
    Turkic languages
    The Turkic languages constitute a language family of at least thirty five languages, spoken by Turkic peoples across a vast area from Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean to Siberia and Western China, and are considered to be part of the proposed Altaic language family.Turkic languages are spoken...

    ; in the  Altai Republic
    Altai Republic
    Altai Republic is a federal subject of Russia . Its capital is the town of Gorno-Altaysk. The area of the republic is . Population: -Geography:...

    )
  4. Avar
    Avar language
    The modern Avar language belongs to the Avar–Andic group of the Northeast Caucasian language family....

     (Northeast Caucasian
    Northeast Caucasian languages
    The Northeast Caucasian languages constitute a language family spoken in the Russian republics of Dagestan, Chechnya, Ingushetia, northern Azerbaijan, and in northeastern Georgia, as well as in diaspora populations in Russia, Turkey, and the Middle East...

    ); and Azerbaijani
    Azerbaijani language
    Azerbaijani or Azeri or Torki is a language belonging to the Turkic language family, spoken in southwestern Asia by the Azerbaijani people, primarily in Azerbaijan and northwestern Iran...

     (Turkic
    Turkic languages
    The Turkic languages constitute a language family of at least thirty five languages, spoken by Turkic peoples across a vast area from Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean to Siberia and Western China, and are considered to be part of the proposed Altaic language family.Turkic languages are spoken...

     in the  Republic of Dagestan)
  5. Bashkir
    Bashkir language
    The Bashkir language is a Turkic language, and is the language of the Bashkirs. It is co-official with Russian in the Republic of Bashkortostan.-Speakers:...

     (Turkic
    Turkic languages
    The Turkic languages constitute a language family of at least thirty five languages, spoken by Turkic peoples across a vast area from Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean to Siberia and Western China, and are considered to be part of the proposed Altaic language family.Turkic languages are spoken...

    ; in the  Republic of Bashkortostan
    Bashkortostan
    The Republic of Bashkortostan , also known as Bashkiria is a federal subject of Russia . It is located between the Volga River and the Ural Mountains. Its capital is the city of Ufa...

    )
  6. Buryat
    Buryat language
    Buryat is a Mongolic variety spoken by the Buryats that is either classified as a language or as a major dialect group of Mongolian. The majority of Buryat speakers live in Russia along the northern border of Mongolia where it is an official language in the Buryat Republic, Ust-Orda Buryatia and...

     (Mongolic
    Mongolic languages
    The Mongolic languages are a group of languages spoken in East-Central Asia, mostly in Mongolia and surrounding areas plus in Kalmykia. The best-known member of this language family, Mongolian, is the primary language of most of the residents of Mongolia and the Mongolian residents of Inner...

    ; in Agin-Buryat Okrug and the  Buryat Republic)
  7. Chechen
    Chechen language
    The Chechen language is spoken by more than 1.5 million people, mostly in Chechnya and by Chechen people elsewhere. It is a member of the Northeast Caucasian languages.-Classification:...

     (Northeast Caucasian
    Northeast Caucasian languages
    The Northeast Caucasian languages constitute a language family spoken in the Russian republics of Dagestan, Chechnya, Ingushetia, northern Azerbaijan, and in northeastern Georgia, as well as in diaspora populations in Russia, Turkey, and the Middle East...

    ; in the  Chechen Republic
    Chechnya
    The Chechen Republic , commonly referred to as Chechnya , also spelled Chechnia or Chechenia, sometimes referred to as Ichkeria , is a federal subject of Russia . It is located in the southeastern part of Europe in the Northern Caucasus mountains. The capital of the republic is the city of Grozny...

    )
  8. Chuvash
    Chuvash language
    Chuvash is a Turkic language spoken in central Russia, primarily in the Chuvash Republic and adjacent areas. It is the only surviving member of the Oghur branch of Turkic languages....

     (Turkic
    Turkic languages
    The Turkic languages constitute a language family of at least thirty five languages, spoken by Turkic peoples across a vast area from Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean to Siberia and Western China, and are considered to be part of the proposed Altaic language family.Turkic languages are spoken...

    ; in the  Chuvash Republic)
  9. Erzya
    Erzya language
    The Erzya language is spoken by about 500,000 people in the northern and eastern and north-western parts of the Republic of Mordovia and adjacent regions of Nizhniy Novgorod, Chuvashia, Penza, Samara, Saratov, Orenburg, Ulyanovsk, Tatarstan and Bashkortostan in Russia...

     (Uralic
    Uralic languages
    The Uralic languages constitute a language family of some three dozen languages spoken by approximately 25 million people. The healthiest Uralic languages in terms of the number of native speakers are Hungarian, Finnish, Estonian, Mari and Udmurt...

    ; in the  Republic of Mordovia
    Mordovia
    The Republic of Mordovia , also known as Mordvinia, is a federal subject of Russia . Its capital is the city of Saransk. Population: -Geography:The republic is located in the eastern part of the East European Plain of Russia...

    )
  10. Ingush
    Ingush language
    Ingush is a language spoken by about 413,000 people , known as the Ingush, across a region covering Ingushetia, Chechnya, Kazakhstan and Russia. In Ingush, the language is called ГІалгІай Ğalğaj .-Classification:...

     (Northeast Caucasian
    Northeast Caucasian languages
    The Northeast Caucasian languages constitute a language family spoken in the Russian republics of Dagestan, Chechnya, Ingushetia, northern Azerbaijan, and in northeastern Georgia, as well as in diaspora populations in Russia, Turkey, and the Middle East...

    ; in the  Republic of Ingushetia
    Ingushetia
    The Republic of Ingushetia is a federal subject of Russia , located in the North Caucasus region with its capital at Magas. In terms of area, the republic is the smallest of Russia's federal subjects except for the two federal cities, Moscow and Saint Petersburg...

    )
  11. Kabardian
    Kabardian language
    The Kabardian language, also known as East Circassian , is a Northwest Caucasian language, closely related to the Adyghe language. It is spoken mainly in the Russian republics of Kabardino-Balkaria and Karachay-Cherkessia and in Turkey and the Middle East...

     (Northwest Caucasian
    Northwest Caucasian languages
    The Northwest Caucasian languages, also called Abkhazo-Adyghean, or sometimes Pontic as opposed to Caspian for the Northeast Caucasian languages, are a group of languages spoken in the Caucasus region, chiefly in Russia , the disputed territory of Abkhazia, and Turkey, with smaller communities...

    ; in the  Kabardino-Balkar Republic
    Kabardino-Balkaria
    The Kabardino-Balkar Republic , or Kabardino-Balkaria , is a federal subject of Russia located in the North Caucasus. Population: -Geography:The republic is situated in the North Caucasus mountains, with plains in the northern part....

     and  Karachay-Cherkess Republic
    Karachay-Cherkessia
    The Karachay-Cherkess Republic , or Karachay-Cherkessia is a federal subject of Russia . Population: -Geography:*Area: *Borders:**internal: Krasnodar Krai , Kabardino-Balkar Republic , Stavropol Krai ....

    )
  12. Kalmyk
    Kalmyk language
    The Kalmyk language , or Russian Oirat, is the native speech of the Kalmyk people of the Republic of Kalmykia, a federal subject of the Russian Federation. In Russia, it is the normative form of the Oirat language , which belongs to the Mongolic language family...

     (Mongolic
    Mongolic languages
    The Mongolic languages are a group of languages spoken in East-Central Asia, mostly in Mongolia and surrounding areas plus in Kalmykia. The best-known member of this language family, Mongolian, is the primary language of most of the residents of Mongolia and the Mongolian residents of Inner...

    ; in the  Republic of Kalmykia
    Kalmykia
    The Republic of Kalmykia is a federal subject of Russia . Population: It is the only Buddhist region in Europe. It has also become well-known as an international chess mecca because its former President, Kirsan Ilyumzhinov, is the head of the International Chess Federation .-Geography:*Area:...

    )
  13. Karachay-Balkar
    Karachay-Balkar language
    The Karachay-Balkar language is a Turkic language spoken by the Karachays and Balkars. It is divided into two dialects: Karachay-Baksan-Chegem which pronounces two phonemes as and , and Balkar, which pronounces the corresponding phonemes as and .- Alphabet :Modern Karachay-Balkar Cyrillic...

     (Turkic
    Turkic languages
    The Turkic languages constitute a language family of at least thirty five languages, spoken by Turkic peoples across a vast area from Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean to Siberia and Western China, and are considered to be part of the proposed Altaic language family.Turkic languages are spoken...

    ; in the  Kabardino-Balkar Republic
    Kabardino-Balkaria
    The Kabardino-Balkar Republic , or Kabardino-Balkaria , is a federal subject of Russia located in the North Caucasus. Population: -Geography:The republic is situated in the North Caucasus mountains, with plains in the northern part....

     and  Karachay-Cherkess Republic
    Karachay-Cherkessia
    The Karachay-Cherkess Republic , or Karachay-Cherkessia is a federal subject of Russia . Population: -Geography:*Area: *Borders:**internal: Krasnodar Krai , Kabardino-Balkar Republic , Stavropol Krai ....

    )
  14. Khakas
    Khakas language
    Khakas is a Turkic language spoken by the Khakas people, who mainly live in the southern Siberian Khakas Republic, or Khakassia, in Russia...

     (Turkic
    Turkic languages
    The Turkic languages constitute a language family of at least thirty five languages, spoken by Turkic peoples across a vast area from Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean to Siberia and Western China, and are considered to be part of the proposed Altaic language family.Turkic languages are spoken...

    ; in the  Republic of Khakassia
    Khakassia
    The Republic of Khakassia or Khakasiya is a federal subject of Russia located in south-central Siberia. Its capital city is Abakan, which is also the largest city in the republic...

    )
  15. Komi-Zyrian
    Komi-Zyrian language
    Komi-Zyrian language, or simply Komi, Zyrian or Zyryan, is one of the two regional varieties of the pluricentrical Komi language, the other regional variety being Komi-Permyak....

     (Uralic
    Uralic languages
    The Uralic languages constitute a language family of some three dozen languages spoken by approximately 25 million people. The healthiest Uralic languages in terms of the number of native speakers are Hungarian, Finnish, Estonian, Mari and Udmurt...

    ; in the Komi Republic
    Komi Republic
    The Komi Republic is a federal subject of Russia .-Geography:The republic is situated to the west of the Ural mountains, in the north-east of the East European Plain...

    )
  16. Mansi
    Mansi language
    The Mansi language is a language of the Mansi people. It is spoken in territories of Russia along the Ob River and its tributaries, including the Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug and the Sverdlovsk Oblast...

     (Uralic
    Uralic languages
    The Uralic languages constitute a language family of some three dozen languages spoken by approximately 25 million people. The healthiest Uralic languages in terms of the number of native speakers are Hungarian, Finnish, Estonian, Mari and Udmurt...

    ; in  Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug
    Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug
    Khanty–Mansi Autonomous Okrug , also known as Yugra, is a federal subject of Russia . Population: The people native to the region are the Khanty and the Mansi, known collectively as Ob Ugric people...

    )
  17. Mari
    Mari language
    The Mari language , spoken by more than 600,000 people, belongs to the Uralic language family. It is spoken primarily in the Mari Republic of the Russian Federation as well as in the area along the Vyatka river basin and eastwards to the Urals...

     (Uralic
    Uralic languages
    The Uralic languages constitute a language family of some three dozen languages spoken by approximately 25 million people. The healthiest Uralic languages in terms of the number of native speakers are Hungarian, Finnish, Estonian, Mari and Udmurt...

    ; in the  Mari El Republic
    Mari El
    The Mari El Republic is a federal subject of Russia . Its capital is the city of Yoshkar-Ola. Population: -Geography:The republic is located in the eastern part of the East European Plain of Russia, along the Volga River. The swampy Mari Depression is located in the west of the republic...

    )
  18. Moksha
    Moksha language
    The Moksha language is a member of the Finno-Volgaic subdivision of the Uralic languages with about 500,000 native speakers. Moksha is the majority language in the western part of Mordovia....

     (Uralic
    Uralic languages
    The Uralic languages constitute a language family of some three dozen languages spoken by approximately 25 million people. The healthiest Uralic languages in terms of the number of native speakers are Hungarian, Finnish, Estonian, Mari and Udmurt...

    ; in the  Republic of Mordovia
    Mordovia
    The Republic of Mordovia , also known as Mordvinia, is a federal subject of Russia . Its capital is the city of Saransk. Population: -Geography:The republic is located in the eastern part of the East European Plain of Russia...

    )
  19. Nogai
    Nogai language
    Nogai , is a Turkic language spoken in southwestern Russia. Three distinct dialects are recognized: Qara-Nogay , spoken in Dagestan; Nogai Proper, in Stavropol; and Aqnogay , by the Kuban River, its tributaries in Karachay-Cherkessia, and in the Mineralnye Vody District...

     (Turkic
    Turkic languages
    The Turkic languages constitute a language family of at least thirty five languages, spoken by Turkic peoples across a vast area from Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean to Siberia and Western China, and are considered to be part of the proposed Altaic language family.Turkic languages are spoken...

    ; in the  Karachay-Cherkess Republic
    Karachay-Cherkessia
    The Karachay-Cherkess Republic , or Karachay-Cherkessia is a federal subject of Russia . Population: -Geography:*Area: *Borders:**internal: Krasnodar Krai , Kabardino-Balkar Republic , Stavropol Krai ....

    )
  20. Ossetic
    Ossetic language
    Ossetian , also sometimes called Ossete, is an East Iranian language spoken in Ossetia, a region on the slopes of the Caucasus Mountains....

     (Indo-European
    Indo-European languages
    The Indo-European languages are a family of several hundred related languages and dialects, including most major current languages of Europe, the Iranian plateau, and South Asia and also historically predominant in Anatolia...

    ; in the  Republic of North Ossetia-Alania
    North Ossetia-Alania
    The Republic of North Ossetia–Alania is a federal subject of Russia . Its population according to the 2010 Census was 712,877.-Name:...

    )
  21. Tatar
    Tatar language
    The Tatar language , or more specifically Kazan Tatar, is a Turkic language spoken by the Tatars of historical Kazan Khanate, including modern Tatarstan and Bashkiria...

     (Turkic
    Turkic languages
    The Turkic languages constitute a language family of at least thirty five languages, spoken by Turkic peoples across a vast area from Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean to Siberia and Western China, and are considered to be part of the proposed Altaic language family.Turkic languages are spoken...

    ; in the  Republic of Tatarstan
    Tatarstan
    The Republic of Tatarstan is a federal subject of Russia located in the Volga Federal District. Its capital is the city of Kazan, which is one of Russia's largest and most prosperous cities. The republic borders with Kirov, Ulyanovsk, Samara, and Orenburg Oblasts, and with the Mari El, Udmurt,...

    )
  22. Tuvаn
    Tuvan language
    Tuvan , also known as Tuvinian, Tyvan or Tuvin, is a Turkic language spoken in the Republic of Tuva in south-central Siberia in Russia. The language has borrowed a great number of roots from the Mongolian language and more recently from the Russian language...

     (Turkic
    Turkic languages
    The Turkic languages constitute a language family of at least thirty five languages, spoken by Turkic peoples across a vast area from Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean to Siberia and Western China, and are considered to be part of the proposed Altaic language family.Turkic languages are spoken...

    ; in the  Tuva Republic
    Tuva
    The Tyva Republic , or Tuva , is a federal subject of Russia . It lies in the geographical center of Asia, in southern Siberia. The republic borders with the Altai Republic, the Republic of Khakassia, Krasnoyarsk Krai, Irkutsk Oblast, and the Republic of Buryatia in Russia and with Mongolia to the...

    )
  23. Udmurt
    Udmurt language
    Udmurt is an Uralic language, part of the Permic subgroup, spoken by the Udmurt natives of the Russian constituent republic of Udmurtia, where it is coofficial with Russian. It is written in the Cyrillic script with five additional characters. Together with Komi and Komi-Permyak languages, it...

     (Uralic
    Uralic languages
    The Uralic languages constitute a language family of some three dozen languages spoken by approximately 25 million people. The healthiest Uralic languages in terms of the number of native speakers are Hungarian, Finnish, Estonian, Mari and Udmurt...

    ; in the  Udmurt Republic
    Udmurtia
    The Udmurt Republic , or Udmurtia is a federal subject of Russia . Its capital is the city of Izhevsk. Population: -History:...

    )
  24. Yakut (Turkic
    Turkic languages
    The Turkic languages constitute a language family of at least thirty five languages, spoken by Turkic peoples across a vast area from Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean to Siberia and Western China, and are considered to be part of the proposed Altaic language family.Turkic languages are spoken...

    ; in the  Sakha Republic)

Unofficial languages


There are numerous migrant workers from former USSR republics and other countries living in Russia.
Armenian
Armenian language
The Armenian language is an Indo-European language spoken by the Armenian people. It is the official language of the Republic of Armenia as well as in the region of Nagorno-Karabakh. The language is also widely spoken by Armenian communities in the Armenian diaspora...

 
Georgian
Georgian language
Georgian is the native language of the Georgians and the official language of Georgia, a country in the Caucasus.Georgian is the primary language of about 4 million people in Georgia itself, and of another 500,000 abroad...

 
Tajik
Tajik language
Tajik, Tajik Persian, or Tajiki, is a variety of modern Persian spoken in Central Asia. Historically Tajiks called their language zabani farsī , meaning Persian language in English; the term zabani tajikī, or Tajik language, was introduced in the 20th century by the Soviets...

Azerbaijani
Azerbaijani language
Azerbaijani or Azeri or Torki is a language belonging to the Turkic language family, spoken in southwestern Asia by the Azerbaijani people, primarily in Azerbaijan and northwestern Iran...

 
Kazakh
Kazakh language
Kazakh is a Turkic language which belongs to the Kipchak branch of the Turkic languages, closely related to Nogai and Karakalpak....

 
Turkish
Turkish language
Turkish is a language spoken as a native language by over 83 million people worldwide, making it the most commonly spoken of the Turkic languages. Its speakers are located predominantly in Turkey and Northern Cyprus with smaller groups in Iraq, Greece, Bulgaria, the Republic of Macedonia, Kosovo,...

Belarusian
Belarusian language
The Belarusian language , sometimes referred to as White Russian or White Ruthenian, is the language of the Belarusian people...

 
Korean
Korean language
Korean is the official language of the country Korea, in both South and North. It is also one of the two official languages in the Yanbian Korean Autonomous Prefecture in People's Republic of China. There are about 78 million Korean speakers worldwide. In the 15th century, a national writing...

 
Turkmen
Turkmen language
Turkmen is the national language of Turkmenistan...

Mandarin Chinese  Kyrgyz
Kyrgyz language
Kyrgyz or Kirgiz, also Kirghiz, Kyrghiz, Qyrghiz is a Turkic language and, together with Russian, an official language of Kyrgyzstan...

 
Ukrainian
Ukrainian language
Ukrainian is a language of the East Slavic subgroup of the Slavic languages. It is the official state language of Ukraine. Written Ukrainian uses a variant of the Cyrillic alphabet....

Czech
Czech language
Czech is a West Slavic language with about 12 million native speakers; it is the majority language in the Czech Republic and spoken by Czechs worldwide. The language was known as Bohemian in English until the late 19th century...

 
Latvian
Latvian language
Latvian is the official state language of Latvia. It is also sometimes referred to as Lettish. There are about 1.4 million native Latvian speakers in Latvia and about 150,000 abroad. The Latvian language has a relatively large number of non-native speakers, atypical for a small language...

 
Uzbek
Uzbek language
Uzbek is a Turkic language and the official language of Uzbekistan. It has about 25.5 million native speakers, and it is spoken by the Uzbeks in Uzbekistan and elsewhere in Central Asia...

Estonian
Estonian language
Estonian is the official language of Estonia, spoken by about 1.1 million people in Estonia and tens of thousands in various émigré communities...

 
Lithuanian
Lithuanian language
Lithuanian is the official state language of Lithuania and is recognized as one of the official languages of the European Union. There are about 2.96 million native Lithuanian speakers in Lithuania and about 170,000 abroad. Lithuanian is a Baltic language, closely related to Latvian, although they...

 
Yiddish
Yiddish language
Yiddish is a High German language of Ashkenazi Jewish origin, spoken throughout the world. It developed as a fusion of German dialects with Hebrew, Aramaic, Slavic languages and traces of Romance languages...

Finnish
Finnish language
Finnish is the language spoken by the majority of the population in Finland Primarily for use by restaurant menus and by ethnic Finns outside Finland. It is one of the two official languages of Finland and an official minority language in Sweden. In Sweden, both standard Finnish and Meänkieli, a...

 
Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

 
German
German language
German is a West Germanic language, related to and classified alongside English and Dutch. With an estimated 90 – 98 million native speakers, German is one of the world's major languages and is the most widely-spoken first language in the European Union....

 
Polish
Polish language
Polish is a language of the Lechitic subgroup of West Slavic languages, used throughout Poland and by Polish minorities in other countries...

 

Endangered languages in Russia


There are many endangered language
Endangered language
An endangered language is a language that is at risk of falling out of use. If it loses all its native speakers, it becomes a dead language. If eventually no one speaks the language at all it becomes an "extinct language"....

s in Russia. Some are considered to be near extinction and put on the list of endangered languages, and some may have gone extinct since data was last reported. On the other hand, some languages may survive even with few speakers.

Some languages have doubtful data, like Serbian
Serbian language
Serbian is a form of Serbo-Croatian, a South Slavic language, spoken by Serbs in Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Croatia and neighbouring countries....

 whose information in the Ethnologue
Ethnologue
Ethnologue: Languages of the World is a web and print publication of SIL International , a Christian linguistic service organization, which studies lesser-known languages, to provide the speakers with Bibles in their native language and support their efforts in language development.The Ethnologue...

 is based on the 1959 census.

Languages near extinction


Most numbers are according to Michael Krauss, 1995. Given the time that has passed, languages with extremely few speakers might be extinct today. As of 1997, Kerek
Kerek language
Kerek was a language of Russia that belongs to the northern branch of the Chukotko-Kamchatkan languages. On historical linguistic grounds it is most closely related to Koryak...

 and Yugh
Yugh language
Yugh is a Yeniseian language, closely related to Ket, formerly spoken by the Yugh people, one of the southern groups along the Yenisei River in central Siberia. In the past it was regarded as a dialect of the Ket language, which was considered to be a language isolate...

 have now become extinct.
  • Ainu
    Ainu language
    Ainu is one of the Ainu languages, spoken by members of the Ainu ethnic group on the northern Japanese island of Hokkaidō....

     (15)
  • Enets
    Enets language
    Enets is a Samoyedic language spoken by the Enets people along the lower Yenisei River in Krasnoyarsk Krai, Russia. There are two distinct dialects - Forest Enets and Tundra Enets - which may be considered separate languages. There are only about seventy speakers in total, with slightly more...

     (70)
  • Tofalar (25 – 30)
  • Mednyy (10) (an Aleut
    Aleut language
    Aleut is a language of the Eskimo–Aleut language family. It is the heritage language of the Aleut people living in the Aleutian Islands, Pribilof Islands, and Commander Islands. As of 2007 there were about 150 speakers of Aleut .- Dialects :Aleut is alone with the Eskimo languages in the...

    -Russian creole language
    Creole language
    A creole language, or simply a creole, is a stable natural language developed from the mixing of parent languages; creoles differ from pidgins in that they have been nativized by children as their primary language, making them have features of natural languages that are normally missing from...

    )
  • Orok
    Orok language
    Orok is the Russian name for the language known by its speakers as Ulta or Ujlta. Similarly, the people are called Oroks or Ulta. It is counted among the Tungusic languages...

     (30 – 82)
  • Sami, Akkala
    Akkala Sami
    Akkala Sami is a Sami language that was spoken in the Sami villages of A´kkel and Ču´kksuâl, in the inland parts of the Kola Peninsula in Russia...

     (extinct since 2003)
  • Sami, Ter
    Ter Sami
    Ter Sami is the easternmost of the Sami languages. It was traditionally spoken in the northeastern part of the Kola Peninsula, but now it is a moribund language; in 2004, only ten speakers were left...

     (2)
  • Udege
    Udege language
    The Udege language is the language of the Udege people. It is a member of the Tungusic family.-Vocabulary:...

     (100)
  • Vod (25)
  • Yukaghir, Northern
    Northern Yukaghir language
    The Tundra Yukaghir language is one of only two Yukaghir languages.Last spoken in the tundra belt extending between the lower Indigirka to the lower Kolyma basin...

     (30 – 150)
  • Yukaghir, Southern
    Southern Yukaghir language
    The Southern, Kolyma or Forest Yukaghir language is one of only two Yukaghir languages.Last spoken in the forest zone near the sources of the Kolyma, divided between the Sakha Republic and the Magadan Oblast , previously in the wider area of the upper Kolyma region.-Classification and grammatical...

     (10 – 50)

Other endangered languages

  • Chukchi
    Chukchi language
    The Chukchi language is a Palaeosiberian language spoken by Chukchi people in the easternmost extremity of Siberia, mainly in Chukotka Autonomous Okrug...

  • Chulym
    Chulym language
    Chulym , also known as Chulim, Chulym-Turkic, Küerik, Chulym Tatar or Melets Tatar is the language of the Chulyms. The name the people use to refer to themselves, and also to their language, is Ös, literally ‘self’ or ‘own’...

  • Erzya
    Erzya language
    The Erzya language is spoken by about 500,000 people in the northern and eastern and north-western parts of the Republic of Mordovia and adjacent regions of Nizhniy Novgorod, Chuvashia, Penza, Samara, Saratov, Orenburg, Ulyanovsk, Tatarstan and Bashkortostan in Russia...

  • Ingrian
    Ingrian language
    The Ingrian language is a Finnic language spoken by the Izhorians of Ingria. It has approximately 500 speakers left, most of whom are aging...

  • Ket
    Ket language
    The Ket language, formerly known as Yenisei Ostyak, is a Siberian language long thought to be an isolate, the sole surviving language of a Yeniseian language family...

  • Ludian
  • Moksha
    Moksha language
    The Moksha language is a member of the Finno-Volgaic subdivision of the Uralic languages with about 500,000 native speakers. Moksha is the majority language in the western part of Mordovia....

  • Seto
    Seto language
    Seto or Setu language is a dialect of the South Estonian or Võro language , spoken by about 5,000 people...

  • Udmurt
    Udmurt language
    Udmurt is an Uralic language, part of the Permic subgroup, spoken by the Udmurt natives of the Russian constituent republic of Udmurtia, where it is coofficial with Russian. It is written in the Cyrillic script with five additional characters. Together with Komi and Komi-Permyak languages, it...

  • Veps
    Veps language
    The Veps language , spoken by the Vepsians , belongs to the Finnic group of the Uralic languages...

  • Votic
    Votic language
    Votic or Votian is the language spoken by the Votes of Ingria. It is closely related to Estonian and belongs to the Finnic subgroup of Uralic languages. Votic is spoken only in Krakolye and Luzhitsy, two villages in the Kingisepp district, and is close to extinction...


See also

  • Languages of the Caucasus
    Languages of the Caucasus
    The languages of the Caucasus are a large and extremely varied array of languages spoken by more than ten million people in and around the Caucasus Mountains, which lie between the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea....

  • Russification
    Russification
    Russification is an adoption of the Russian language or some other Russian attributes by non-Russian communities...

  • Russian Academy of Sciences
    Russian Academy of Sciences
    The Russian Academy of Sciences consists of the national academy of Russia and a network of scientific research institutes from across the Russian Federation as well as auxiliary scientific and social units like libraries, publishers and hospitals....

    , the language regulator in Russia
  • Japanese language education in Russia
    Japanese language education in Russia
    Japanese language education in Russia formally dates back to December 1701 or January 1702, when Dembei, a shipwrecked Japanese merchant, was taken to Moscow and ordered to begin teaching the language as soon as possible...


External references

  • Languages of European Russia (Ethnologue
    Ethnologue
    Ethnologue: Languages of the World is a web and print publication of SIL International , a Christian linguistic service organization, which studies lesser-known languages, to provide the speakers with Bibles in their native language and support their efforts in language development.The Ethnologue...

    )
  • Languages of Asian Russia (Ethnologue
    Ethnologue
    Ethnologue: Languages of the World is a web and print publication of SIL International , a Christian linguistic service organization, which studies lesser-known languages, to provide the speakers with Bibles in their native language and support their efforts in language development.The Ethnologue...

    )
  • Minority languages of Russia on the Net project, which aims at presenting the languages of Russia to the Web and at facilitating their usage on the Web (most information is in Russian; it provides scientific references on each individual language as well as links to online language descriptions, educational and scientific institutions related to the language, resources on computer-processing of the language and some sites written in this language)
  • Population by mother tongue and districts in 50 Governorates of the European Russia in 1897