Russian (Russian Русский язык) is the most widely spoken of the Slavic languages.
It is primarily spoken in Russia and other nations of the former Soviet Union, and was also widely taught in schools in member countries of the Warsaw Pact. In Soviet times, Russian was often strongly promoted to the detriment of other local languages. While many of the countries of the former Soviet Union are now promoting their local languages rather than Russian, Russian remains widely spoken in these areas and is often used for intercommunication between these countries.
Russian is one of the official languages of the United Nations.
Russian is written using the Cyrillic alphabet.
See also: Common phrases in different languages
|Capital||Small||Name||Sound||typical SAMPA value¹|
|Ъ||ъ||Hard Sign||N/A²||neutralizes palatalization |
of preceding consonant
|Ы||ы||Yery||ui||(IPA i with stroke)|
|Ь||ь||Soft Sign||N/A²||/j/ - palatalization|
- These are only approximate indicators. While Russian is by and large a phonemic orthography, there are occasional exceptions - most notably "ЕГО" (his), which is pronounced /jevo/.
- Note on Hard Sign and Soft Sign: When a iotated vowel (one whose sound begins with /j/) follows a consonant, the consonant will become palatalised (the /j/ sound will mix with the consonant). The Hard Sign will indicate that this does not happen, and the /j/ sound will appear only in front of the vowel. On the other hand, the Soft Sign will indicate this palatalization does happen, even though the following vowel has no /j/ sound.