Russian language

Article

July 6, 2022

The Russian language (Russian: ру́сский язы́к, MFA: [ˈruskʲɪi̯ jɪˈzɨk] ( listen), the historical exonym is Muscovite) is an East Slavic language of the Indo-European language family, one of the Slavic languages ​​included in the larger Balto-language Jan branch. It is the national language of Russians and the state language of the Russian Federation, one of the two state languages ​​of the Republic of Belarus, one of the official languages ​​of the Republic of Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz Republic and is widely used as a lingua franca in the Caucasus, Central Asia, and to some extent in the Baltic countries and Ukraine. It was the de facto language of the USSR before its collapse; and was used in an official capacity or in public life in all post-Soviet states. With more than 258 million speakers worldwide, Russian is the most spoken Slavic language, the most spoken native language in Europe, and the most widely spoken language in Eurasia. The number of people who speak Russian in the Russian Federation is 137.5 million people (2010). A large number of Russian speakers are residents of other countries, such as Israel and Mongolia. It is the seventh most spoken language in the world and the eighth most native speakers after Chinese, English, Hindi, Bengali, Arabic, Portuguese and Spanish. Russian is the second most widely used language on the Internet after English, and is one of the two official languages ​​aboard the International Space Station, as well as one of the six official languages ​​of the United Nations. The Russian script uses the Cyrillic alphabet; it distinguishes consonant phonemes with and without palatal secondary articulation—the so-called "soft" and "hard" sounds. Almost every consonant has a hard or soft counterpart, and this distinction is a prominent feature of the language. Another important aspect is the reduction of unstressed vowels. The phonological system of the Russian language is historically characterized by a system of consonantism, which includes 37 consonant phonemes, and a less complex system of vocalism, which includes 5 or 6 vowel phonemes. At the same time, both in the system of vowels and in the system of consonants, a great variety of positional changes is noted. In particular, vowels in an unstressed position are weakened in a number of cases