Pripyat River

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Pripyat River
Origin Ukraine
Mouth Dnieper
Basin countries Ukraine, Belarus
Length 761 km (473 mi)
Source elevation  
Avg. discharge 377 m3/s
Basin area 121,000 km2 (47,000 sq mi)
Left tributaries Pina, Yaselda, Tsna, Lan, Sluch, Ptsich, Braginka
Right tributaries Horyn, Stokhid, Styr, Turija, Ubort, Zhelon, Slovechna, Uzh

The Pripyat River or Prypiat River (Ukrainian: Прип’ять, pronounced [ˈprɪpjɑtʲ]; Belarusian: Прыпяць, Prypiać, [ˈprɨpʲat͡sʲ]; Polish: Prypeć, [ˈprɨpɛtɕ]; Russian: Припять, [ˈprʲipʲɪtʲ]) is a river in Eastern Europe, approximately 761 km (473 mi) long.[1] It flows east through Ukraine, Belarus, and Ukraine again, draining into the Dnieper.

The Pripyat passes through the exclusion zone established around the site of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster. The city of Prypiat, Ukraine (population 45,000) was completely evacuated after the Chernobyl disaster.

Pripyat has catchment area of 121,000 km2 (47,000 sq mi), 50,900 km2 (19,700 sq mi) of which are in Belarus. 495 km (308 mi) of the whole river length lies within territory of Belarus.[1]

Name etymology[edit]

Pripyat River at Mazyr, Belarus
Map displaying the passage of the river through southern Belarus through the cities of Mazyr, Pinsk and Brest.

Max Vasmer in his etymological dictionary notes that the historical name of the river mentioned in the earliest East Slavic document, Primary Chronicle is Pripet (Припеть) and cites the opinion of other linguists that the name meant "tributary", comparing with Greek and Latin roots. He also rejects some opinions which were improperly based on the stem -пять, rather that original -петь.[2]

It might also derive from the local word pripech used for a river with sandy banks.[3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Main Geographic Characteristics of the Republic of Belarus. Main characteristics of the largest rivers of Belarus". Land of Ancestors. Data of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environmental Protection of the Republic of Belarus. 2011. Retrieved 27 September 2013. 
  2. ^ Max Vasmer, Etymological dictionary of the Russian language, article "Припять" in Russian translation
  3. ^ Room, Adrian (1997). Placenames of the World. Jefferson, North Carolina: McFarland. 

External links[edit]


  • (in Russian, English and Polish) Ye.N.Meshechko, A.A.Gorbatsky (2005) Belarusian Polesye: Tourist Transeuropean Water Mains, Minsk, Four Quarters,
  • (in Belorussian, Russian and English) T.A.Khvagina (2005) POLESYE from the Bug to the Ubort, Minsk Vysheysha shkola, ISBN 985-06-1153-7.

Coordinates: 51°09′31″N 30°29′27″E / 51.15861°N 30.49083°E / 51.15861; 30.49083