Russian belongs to the Slavonic side of the Indo-European language family. It is intimately related to other Slavic languages including Polish, Czech, and Serbo-Croatian. Russian is one of the three surviving members of the East Slavic languages. The Russian language reflects the global opinion of its people, their demeanor, and stereotypes. So, as with many languages, Russian is a language you need to live and “feel.”
Here are some of the most interesting facts about Russian language.
The Russian alphabet is written using the Cyrillic script.
The Russian alphabet uses Cyrillic script and has 33 letters; this is more letters than the English language. Cyrillic is used to write many Slavic languages including Belorussian, Bosnian, Bulgarian, Macedonian, Montenegrin, and Serbian. It is also used for other non-Slavic languages such as Kyrgyz and Tajik.
Russian is spoken across the globe.
Russian is the largest native language in Europe, spoken by over 144 million people. It has official status in Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Kyrgyzstan. Due to Soviet influence, Russian is widely-spoken in many countries throughout Eastern Europe and Asia. Russian is an official language of the United Nations and the International Criminal Court.
Russian is ranked eighth in the top ten list of languages, according to Internet World Stats. There are over 109 million Internet users who speak Russian.
Russian is used widely in the United States as well.
In the United States, Russian is ranked in the top fifteen of languages spoken (based on Census data). Most Russian Americans and Russian speakers live in major urban centers. New York, especially New York City, houses the largest Russian-speaking community in the United States.
Russian is an important language for literature.
The Golden Age of Russian literature was the 19th century. Alexander Pushkin is considered the founder of modern Russian literature. During this era, we saw the rise of internationally renowned novelists Leo Tolstoy and Fyodor Dostoyevsky. Anton Chekhov became a famous short story writer. There are five Russian-born Nobel Laureates in literature: Ivan Bunin (1933), Boris Pasternak (1958), Mikhail Sholokhov (1965), Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn (1970), and Joseph Brodsky (1987).
Russia is a very popular tourist and cultural destination.
There are 28 UNESCO world heritage sites in Russia, with 12 more on the tentative list.
The most important guideline for Russian translators is to discern the cultural context of the material. Russian translators must be able to comprehend the expressions and idioms which befit the translation situation and client’s needs.
Russian translations remain in high demand, even many years after the dissolution of the former Soviet Union. Whether you are looking to have a document translated from Russian into English, or if you are looking for an English to Russian translation, it is important to work with a qualified translator who is a native speaker of the target language.