Russian language in Belarus

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The Russian language in Belarus is one of the two official languages (the other being Belarusian). Being dominant in the media, education and other areas of public life, Russian is de facto the main language of the country.

After 1995[edit]

In 1995, according to the results of the 1995 Belarusian Referendum, the Russian language was declared the second official language. According to the Belarus Census (2009), 41.5% of the Belarusian population declared Russian as their mother language and 70.2% declared Russian "the language spoken at home" (the second language-related question of the Census).

Excerpt from the Russian Empire Census results
Guberniya* Total Population Belarusian (Бѣлорускій) Russian (Вѣликорускій) Polish (Польскій)
Vilna 1,591,207 891,903 78,623 130,054
Vitebsk 1,489,246 987,020 198,001 50,377
Grodno 1,603,409 1,141,714 74,143 161,662
Minsk 2,147,621 1,633,091 83,999 64,617
Mogilev 1,686,764 1,389,782 58,155 17,526
Smolensk 1,525,279 100,757 1,397,875 7,314
* See also: Administrative-territorial division of Belarus and bordering lands in 2nd half 19 cent. (right half-page) and Ethnical composition of Belarus and bordering lands (prep. by Mikola Bich on the basis of 1897 data)


External links[edit]