Armenians in Russia

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Armenians in Russia
Ivan Lazarev by Lampi.jpg
LorisMelikov Aivazovsky.jpg
Aivazovsky - Self-portrait 1874.jpg
Vakhtangov Yevgeny-1.jpg
Анастас Иванович Микоян.jpg
Aram Khachaturian, Pic, 17.jpg
Stamp GSS-Bagramyan 1995 (cropped).jpg
Armen Jigarhanian.jpeg
Евгений Петросян.jpg
Irina Allegrova.jpeg
Sergey Lavrov 17.03.2010.jpeg
Karen Shakhnazarov.jpg
Margarita Simonyan 14 April 2010.jpg
Total population
1,182,388 (2010 census)[1]
2,000,000[2]—2,500,000 (estimates)[3]
0.8%-1.7% of the Russian population
Regions with significant populations
Moscow, Krasnodar Krai, Stavropol Krai, Rostov Oblast
Armenian, Russian
Christianity (predominantly Armenian Apostolic), non-religious

Armenians in Russia or Russian Armenians[n 1] are one of the country's largest ethnic minorities and the largest Armenian diaspora community outside of Armenia. The 2010 Russian census recorded 1,182,388 Armenians in the country. Various figures estimate that the ethnic Armenian population in Russia is actually more than 2 million. Armenians populate various regions, including Moscow, Saint Petersburg, Krasnodar Krai in the North Caucasus and as far as Vladivostok in the East.


Early period[edit]

There has been an Armenian presence in Russia since the Late Middle Ages, when various artisans, merchants and traders ventured north to the Crimea and the northern Caucasus in order to set up trade ties and conduct commerce.

Russian Empire[edit]

Soviet Russia[edit]

Russian Federation[edit]

According to the Union of Russian Armenians, there are 2.5 million Armenians living in Russia today. According to the same source, about 850,000 are immigrants from Armenia, 350,000 from Azerbaijan and 250,000 from Georgia, including 100,000 from Abkhazia and 180,000 from Central Asia, mostly Tajikistan and Turkmenistan.[4]

The Russian government is encouraging Armenians to immigrate and settle in Russia and is providing financial and settlement incentives.[5]


Distribution of Armenians in Russia, 2010
Rank Federal subject 1897 1959[6] 1970[7] 1979[8] 1989[9] 2002[10] 2010[1]
1 Krasnodar Krai 13,926[11] 78,176 98,589 120,797 182,217 274,566 281,680
2 Stavropol Krai 5,385[12] 25,618 31,096 40,504 72,530 149,249 161,324
3 City of Moscow 1,604[13] 18,379 25,584 31,414 43,989 124,425 106,466
4 Rostov Oblast 27,234[14] 49,305 53,620 56,902 62,603 109,994 110,727
5 Moscow Oblast N/A 5,353 5,683 7,549 9,245 39,660 63,306
6 Volgograd Oblast N/A N/A 2,898 4,229 6,784 26,974 27,846
7 Saratov Oblast 168[15] 1,046 1,815 3,531 6,404 24,976 23,841
8 Samara Oblast N/A 1,027 1,629 2,216 4,162 21,566 22,981
9 City of Saint-Petersburg 753[16] 4,897 6,628 7,995 12,070 19,164 19,971
10 North Ossetia 2,093[17] 12,012 13,355 12,912 13,619 17,147 16,235
11 Adygea N/A 3,013 5,217 6,359 10,460 15,268 15,561


The Armenian Cathedral of Moscow, completed in 2011

The 2010 Russian census put the number of Moscow Armenians at 106,466. Another 63,306 Armenians lived in Moscow region at the time. There are various estimates on the number of Armenians in Moscow: 400,000,[18] 600,000,[19] 1,000,000.[20][21] Moscow is often regarded as the largest Armenian community outside of Armenia.

Saint Petersburg[edit]

In 1708 the first Armenians came to St. Petersburg, and in 1710 in the city already existed “Armenian offices”. In 1730, under the leadership of the priest Ivan Sheristanova organized the first parish of the Armenian Apostolic Church. Throughout the 20th century Armenian population of St. Petersburg has been steadily increasing. The number of Armenians in St. Petersburg increased from 1,759 in 1926 to 19,164[10] in 2002.

According to Soviet 1989 census 47% Armenians speak Armenian as native language, 52% speak Russian as native language. At the same time almost all fluent in Russian language. About half of the Armenians have higher education and, consequently, higher social status.[22]


See also: Cherkesogai and Hamshenis

Krasnodar Krai[23] Armenian diaspora of Krasnodar Krai is one of the biggest communities of the Armenian diaspora. According to Russian 2002 census there are 274,566 Armenians and 211,397 of them spoke Armenian as native language and 6,948 had Armenian citizenship. In an earlier census in 1989, the Krasnodar Territory was home to over 182 thousand Armenians (34,2% of the total number of Armenians in the Russian SFSR). In the period between the censuses of 1989 and 2002, Armenians became the second largest ethnic community after Russians in Krasnodar.


Historically, the Don region was home to the largest Armenian community on the territory of modern Russian Federation. Armenians were resettled from Crimean Khanate in 1779 by orders of Catherine the Great and founded several settlements around the territory of modern Rostov-on-Don (largest of them, Nakhichevan-on-Don, was merged into the Rostov city in 1928). Armenians still constitute majority of Myasnikovsky District population. In 2010 Rostov-on-Don had third largest Armenian population of all Russian cities (after Moscow and Sochi, Krasnodar Krai).

Notable Russian Armenians[edit]

Notables are arranged in chronological order

Arts and entertainment[edit]

Politics and military[edit]

  • Valerian Madatov (1782–1829), prince, a lieutenant-general of the Russian Empire
  • Vasili Bebutov (1791–1858), Adjutant General of the H. I. M. Retinue, General of the Infantry
  • Ivan Lazarev (1820–1879), general
  • Movses Silikyan (1862–1937), Major General in the Russian Imperial Army
  • Mikhail Loris-Melikov (1825–1888), General of the Cavalry, Ministers of Interior of Russia in 1880–1881
  • Anastas Mikoyan (1895–1978), Soviet statesman and diplomat, the First Deputy Chairman of the Council of Ministers of the Soviet Union (second highest figure in the Soviet Union) from 1955 to 1964
  • Ivan Bagramyan (1897–1982), Marshal of the Soviet Union
  • Hamazasp Babadzhanian (1906–1977), Chief Marshal of the Mechanized Forces of the USSR, Hero of USSR
  • Nelson Stepanyan (1913–1944), Two times Hero of USSR, dive bomber pilot during WWII
  • Ivan Isakov (1894–1967), military commander, Chief of Staff of the Soviet Navy, Deputy USSR Navy Minister, and held the rank of Admiral of the Fleet of the Soviet Union
  • Sergei Khudyakov (1902–1950), Marshal of Aviation
  • Artem Mikoyan (1905–1970), Brother of Anastas, aircraft designer, designed many of the famous MiG military aircraft
  • Sergey Lavrov (b. 1950), Foreign Minister of Russia since 2004 (father's side)


  • Leon Orbeli (1882–1958), the founder of the evolutionary physiology
  • Andronik Iosifyan (1905–1993), scientist and inventor, the father of electromechanics in USSR
  • Norair Sisakian (1907–1966), one of the founders of space biology, pioneer in biochemistry of sub-cell structures and technical biochemistry
  • Abraham Alikhanov (1904–1970), Soviet physicist, one of the founders of nuclear physics in USSR
  • Semyon Kirlian (1898–1978), founder of Kirlian Photography, discovered that living matter is emitting energy fields.
  • Ivan Knuniants (1906–1990), chemist, one of major developers of Soviet chemical weapons program
  • Mikhail Chailakhyan (1902–1991), founder of hormonal theory of plant development
  • Gurgen Askaryan (1928–1997), physicist, inventor of light self focusing
  • Alexander Kemurdzhian (1921–2003), designer of the first rovers to explore another world: first moon rovers and first Mars rovers
  • Tateos Agekian (1913–2006), astrophysicist, one of the pioneers of Stellar Dynamics
  • Sergei Adian (b. 1931), one of the most prominent soviet mathematicians[25]
  • Boris Babaian (b. 1933), the father of supercomputing in the former Soviet Union and Russia
  • Artur Chilingarov (b. 1939), polar explorer, member of the State Duma from 1993 to 2011



See also[edit]


  1. ^ Note that this article is about the Armenians living within Russia's current borders. Through the 19th and 20th century, part of the Armenian homeland (known as Russian Armenia or Eastern Armenia) was under Russian and later Soviet rule. For Armenians in countries that have been part of Russia in the past, see Armenians in Azerbaijan, Armenians in Georgia, Armenians in Ukraine, Armenians in Belarus, Armenians in Moldova, Armenians in the Baltic states, Armenians in Central Asia and Armenians in Poland.
  1. ^ a b (Russian) Национальный состав населения по субъектам Российской Федерации
  2. ^ Harutyunyan 2010, p. 129.
  3. ^ В России проживает более 2,5 млн армян [2,5 million Armenians live in Russia] (in Russian). RIA Novosti. 16 December 2002. Retrieved 5 January 2013. 
  4. ^ В России проживает более 2,5 млн армян (in Russian). РИА "Новости". December 16, 2002. Retrieved July 21, 2012. 
  5. ^ Armenia Urges Russia to Discourage Armenian Migration
  6. ^ Демоскоп Weekly - Всесоюзная перепись населения 1959 года.Национальный состав населения по регионам России
  7. ^ Демоскоп Weekly - Всесоюзная перепись населения 1970 года.Национальный состав населения по регионам России
  8. ^ Демоскоп Weekly - Всесоюзная перепись населения 1979 года.Национальный состав населения по регионам России
  9. ^ Демоскоп Weekly - Всесоюзная перепись населения 1979 года.Национальный состав населения по регионам России
  10. ^ a b National composition of population for regions of the Russian Federation
  11. ^ (Russian) Кубанская область
  12. ^ (Russian) Ставропольская губерния
  13. ^ (Russian) Московская губерния
  14. ^ (Russian) Облась Войска Донского
  15. ^ (Russian) Саратовская губерния
  16. ^ (Russian) г. Санкт-Петербург
  17. ^ (Russian) Терская область - Владикавказский округ
  18. ^ (Russian) В России армян "обласкали и дали им охоту"
  19. ^ (Russian) В России проживает более 2,5 млн армян
  20. ^ (Russian) Сколько русских осталось в Москве?
  21. ^ Armenian population in the world
  22. ^ Бизнес Санкт-Петербурга
  24. ^ "Philipp Kirkorov". Retrieved 12 June 2013. 
  25. ^


External links[edit]