Russian Language History

The language of astronauts

YES! Astronauts worldwide are now required to learn the Russian language to aid in their understanding of space technology, especially at the International Space Station. This is just one example of how the primary language in Russia is growing in importance worldwide. This is also a good reason Russian translations to English are growing in popularity.

The Russian language is the eighth most commonly spoken language globally, according to the world’s league table of languages. It is an Eastern Slavonic language closely related to Ukrainian and Belarusian. There are about 160 million native speakers of the Russian language, and another 60 million speakers who speak it as a second language. Some of the largest populations of Russian speakers are in Russia, Ukraine, Kazakhstan, and Belarus.

Countries such as Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, and Bulgaria also speak Russian. It is the most geographically widespread language in Russia and all of Eurasia, and the most widely spoken of the Slavic languages. The Russian language is the largest native language in Russia and all of Europe. It is also one of the six official languages of the United Nations.

The Official Language

Russian is the official language in Russia and three other countries: Belarus, Kyrgyzstan, and Kazakhstan. Russian is primarily a phonetic language characterised by a flexible ordering of words in sentences.

The 19th and 20th centuries were great times for the Russian language. During this period, many works of literature and classical work took place. The works of authors like Dostoyevsky, Tolstoy, Chekhov, and Nabokov have gained immense popularity across the globe. The popularity of these works has made Russian translation to English services sought after more than ever before.

The Russian language is growing more and more popular as the world itself becomes more universal. In fact, there are over 38 million people learning the Russian language around the world. However, the number of people learning Russian has fallen sharply since the collapse of the Soviet Union.

Origins & Roots of the Russian Language

The Slavs, often credited for the birth of the Eastern Slavonic languages, including Russian and Belarusian. There are three primary groups in the Slavonic language family: the western, the southern, and the eastern. Within this language family, the same grammatical structure takes precidence. That means they could use one common written language: the Old Church Slavonic. This written language in Russia was mostly used for religious texts. This made it easier for large multitudes of people to understand with fewer problems.

Constantine and Methodius

Two missionaries named Constantine and Methodius had an important task. Their task was translating the scriptures into Old Church Slavonic so that more people could understand the Bible. Constantine invented an entirely new alphabet to translate the scriptures. The Greek language largely inspired the Russian alphabet and, hence, the Russian alphabet eventually became known as the Cyrillic alphabet.

The earliest known writing in Russia dated from the 10th century and was found at Novgorod. The principal languages written on them were Old Russian and Old Church Slavonic. Russia started appearing in writing regularly during the reign of Peter the Great (1672-1725).


Peter the Great

Peter the Great introduced a revised alphabet and encouraged authors to use a literary style closer to their spoken language. Knowledge of the Russian language was widespread during the Soviet era because of the enormous area that Russia covered. Though the language in Russia was widespread, there were not a lot of subjects to write about.

The modern form of the language, however, came after the Communist Revolution in 1917. Archaic letters left the alphabet during this modernisation of the language. After the reformation of the language, the Russian language has reached the level we know it today. The modern Russian alphabet is a variant of the Cyrillic alphabet and contains 33 letters.


Russian Translation Services

At Renaissance Translations, we offer high quality Russian translations to English as well as many other languages. Our translators are experts in their field with an extensive experience in multiple content types such as business, energy & mining, engineering, medical and many others.

If you have a document to translate, just get in touch and we can help. One of our friendly project managers will understand your project’s requirements and we can deliver your high quality translation in no time.