Infobox Ethnic group
group = "'Ukrainians'(Ukrayintsi)

caption = T. ShevchenkoN. MakhnoL. UkrainkaB. Khmelnytsky S. TymoshenkoA. DovzhenkoS. KorolyovA. Shevchenko
poptime = 44-45 millionFact|date=September 2008
popplace = flag|Ukraine: 37,541,700 [cite web|url=|title=Results / General results of the census / National composition of population|accessdate=2007-08-05|date=|year=2001|month=December 5|work=All-Ukrainian Census, 2001]
region1 = flag|Russia
pop1 = 2,942,961
ref1 = [cite web|url=|title= All-Russian population census, 2001. National composition of population by region.|accessdate=2007-08-05|date=|year=2002|month=October 9-16|work=Russian Federal Service of State Statistics|publisher=Демоскоп Weekly|language=Russian]
region2 = flag|Canada
pop2 = 1,209,805
ref2 = Statistics include non-primary ancestry reports. "Ukrainians" being of partial descent figured in numbers.] [cite web|title=Ethnic origins, 2006 counts, for Canada, provinces and territories - 20% sample data|url=]
region3 = flag|Brazil
pop3 = 950,000
ref3 = [ cite web
url =
title = Governo do Paraná
region4 = flag|United States
pop4 = 890,000
ref4 = [" [ Ancestry: 200] " "United States Census Bureau". June 2004. Retrieved on 2007-08-05.]
region5 = flag|Kazakhstan
pop5 = 550,000
ref5 = [ [ (2005 census)] ]
region6 = flag|Moldova
pop6 = 375,000
ref6 = [cite web|url=|title=Moldova
accessdate=2007-08-05|date=|year=2007|work=CIA - The World Factbook
region7 = flag|Argentina
pop7 = 305,000
ref7 = [cite web|url=|title=Article
region8 = flag|Belarus
pop8 = 248,000
ref8 = [cite web|url=|title=Belarus
accessdate=2007-08-05|date=|year=2007|work=CIA - The World Factbook
region9 = flag|Germany
pop9 = 128,100
ref9 = cite web|url=|title=Startseite
accessdate=2007-08-05|work=Statistisches Bundesamt Deutschland
region10 = flag|Paraguay
pop10 = 130,000
ref10 =
region11 = flag|Czech Republic
pop11 = 126,613
ref11 = [ [ Number of foreigners in the CR] , "Czech Statistics Office", 31 May, 2008]
region12 = flag|Italy
pop12 = 120,070
ref12 = [cite web|url=|title=Cittadini Stranieri. Popolazione residente per sesso e cittadinanza al 31 Dicembre 2007. Italia - Tutti i Paesi. |accessdate=2007-08-05|date=|year=2005|work=Statistiche demografiche ISTAT|language=Italian]
region13 = flag|Spain
pop13 = 69.081 ("2007")
ref13 = [Instituto Nacional de Estadística: "Avance del Padrón Municipal a 1 de enero de 2007. Datos provisionales." [] .]
region14 = flag|Portugal
pop14 = 66,048
ref14 = [cite web|url=|title=Imigrantes do Leste|accessdate=2007-08-05|work=Imigrantes|language=Portuguese]
region15 = flag|Latvia
pop15 = 61,589
ref15 = [cite web|url=|title=Latvia: Ethnic composition of resident population in regions, cities and districts at beginning of 2002|accessdate=2007-08-05|date=|year=2002|]
region16 = flag|Romania
pop16 = 61,350
ref16 = cite web|url=|title=Recensamant Romania 2002|accessdate=2007-08-05|date=|year=2002|work=Agentia Nationala pentru Intreprinderi Mici si Mijlocii|language=Romanian]
region17 = flag|Slovakia
pop17 = 55,000
ref17 = [cite web|url=|title=Slovakia
accessdate=2007-08-05|date=|year=2007|work=CIA - The World Factbook
region18 = flag|Kyrgyzstan
pop18 = 50,442
ref18 = [cite web|url=|title=National LIFE Strategy for Phase IV in Kyrgyzstan and Workplanfor 2001-2004|accessdate=2007-08-05|work=Life]
region19 = flag|Poland
pop19 = 40,000
ref19 = [cite web|url=|title=Poland: Stock of foreigners (selected components) by major citizenships, 2000.|accessdate=2007-08-05|date=|year=2004|]
region20 = flag|Turkey
pop20 = 35,000
ref20 =
region22 = flag|Australia
pop22 = 37,581
ref22 = [" [ 2006 Census of Australia] .]
region23 = flag|Azerbaijan
pop23 = 30,000
ref23 = [cite web|url=|title=Azerbaijan has preserved its `unique country' image because of thepopulation's ethnic composition|accessdate=2007-08-05|author=I. Umudlu|date=|year=2001|month=March 16|work=Ayna|publisher=Eurasianet]
region24 = flag|Lithuania
pop24 = 22,488
ref24 = [cite web|url=|title=Lithuania: Population by ethnic nationality* (2001)|accessdate=2007-08-05|date=|year=2001|]
region25 = flag|Estonia
pop25 = 22,300
ref25 = [cite web|url=|title=Estonia
accessdate=2007-08-05|date=|year=2007|work=CIA - The World Factbook
region26 = flag|Greece
pop26 = 14,149
ref26 = [" [ Data on immigrants in Greece, from Census 2001, Legalization applications 1998, and valid Residence Permits, 2004] " "". April 2004. Retrieved on 2007-08-05.]
region27 = Rest of world
pop27 = 200,000
langs = Ukrainian, Russian
rels=Predominantly Eastern Orthodoxy which in ukraine is Split between the Ukrainian Orthodox Church - Kiev Patriarchate, Ukrainian Orthodox Church - Moscow Patriarchate and the Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox Church, with a Greek Catholic minority in western Ukraine. Various Protestant churches have a growing presence among Ukrainians. Judaism and Islam are spread among non-Ukrainian ethnic minorities, though citizens of Ukraine.
related=Other Slavic peoples, especially East Slavs (Russians, Belarusians, Rusyns)

Ukrainians ( _uk. Українці, "Ukrayintsi", IPA | [ukrɑˈjinʲʦʲi] ) are an East Slavic ethnic group primarily living in Ukraine, or more broadly—citizens of Ukraine (who may or may not be ethnic Ukrainians). Some 200 years ago and times prior to that, Ukrainians were usually referred to and known as "Rusyny" ( _uk. Русини, commonly translated as Ruthenians).


Most ethnic Ukrainians, about 37 million in total, live in Ukraine where they make up over three-quarters of the population. The largest Ukrainian community outside of Ukraine is in Russia, about 3 million Russian citizens consider themselves ethnic Ukrainians, while millions of others (primarily in southern Russia and Siberia) have some Ukrainian ancestry.

There are also almost 2.1 million Ukrainians in North America (1.2 million in Canada and 890,000 in the United States). Large numbers of Ukrainians live in Brazil (950,000 - 1,000,000), Kazakhstan (about 500,000), Moldova (450,000), Poland (estimates from 300,000 to 400,000), Argentina (305,000), Belarus (estimates from 250,000 to 300,000), Portugal (100,000), and Slovakia (55,000). There are also Ukrainian diasporas in the UK, Germany, Romania, Latvia and former Yugoslavia.


Numerous nomadic tribes inhabited territories now known as Ukraine in antiquity. They included Iranic-speaking Scythians and Sarmatians, and also Greeks from the Black Sea colonies; Thracians from modern-day Bulgaria and Illyrians who were the ancestors of Albanians; Germanic-speaking Goths and Varangians as well as Turkic-speaking Bulgars, Khazars, Pechenegs and Cumans; and finally, the Crimean Armenians in the early 2nd millennia AD. However, Ukrainian origins are predominantly Slavic while non-Slavic nomads who mostly lived in the steppes of southern Ukraine had little influence on the ancestors of modern Ukrainians. [For alternative views, see Proto-Ukrainians.]

Gothic historian Jordanes and 6th century Byzantine authors named two groups that lived on the south of Europe: sclavins (western slavs) and Antes. The Anti are normally identified with proto-Ukrainians. The name anti is of Iranic origin and means people living on the borderland. The state of Anti existed from the end of 4th to early 7th century. In the 4th cen. the Anti fought against the Goths. In 375, the Gothic king Vinitar, facing the Antis, at first experienced defeat but later captured the king of Anti, Bozh, whom he executed together with his sons and 70 aristocrats. The Goths did not manage to subdue the Anti, since in the same year the Gothic union fell from the attack of the Huns. From the 6th century the Anti fought Byzantium and in the 6-7 cen. colonised the Balkan peninsula. From the end of 6th cen. they fought against the Avars. The Anti consisted of several East Slavic tribes, such as:

* Polans
* Drevlyans
* Severians
* Dulebes (that later likely became Volhynians and Buzhans)
* Tivertsi
* Ulichs

which lived on the territory of today's Ukraine. The Ukrainian language is an East Slavic language and Ukrainian people belong to the same subdivision of Slavs as Rusyn (Ukrainian offshoot, as all Ukrainians were referred as Rusyns or Ruthenians before, from Kievan Rus' state of proto-Ukraine), Russian (which emerged as vernacular from Church-Slavic) and Belarusian.

Slavic tribes inhabited modern-day lands of Ukraine from ancient times and by the 5th century A.D. became dominant there and founded the city of Kiev—later capital of a powerful state known as Kievan Rus'. Kniaz Volodymyr I of Kiev adopted Christianity in 988 and proceeded to baptise the whole Kievan Rus. Polans played the key role in the formation of the Kievan Rus' state.

Among the native Ukrainian population of the Carpathians, there are several distinct groups, namely the Hutsuls, Volhyns, Lemkos and Boyko, each with peculiar area of settlement, dialect, dress, anthropological type and folk traditions. There are a number of theories as for origins each of these groups, the Volhyns with Romanians or shared a Romance-Latin culture in the 10th century AD, the Lemko with Baltic Finno-Ugric peoples, some even connecting Boyky with the Celtic tribe of Boii Fact|date=August 2007 and Hutsuls with Uz people of Turkic stock.

It is argued that the oldest known population of Ukraine - Scythians and Sarmatians were of Iranian stock. They inhabited Ukraine in 7 b.c. — 3 a.d. Absence of sounds "g" (marking use of "h") and "f" (often spelled as "khv" in Ukrainian) in Ukrainian along with some folk traditions (as greeting with bread and salt, houses with straw-roof, popular through history selfdesigning terms "Roxolany", "Roxolana", "Sava"/"Sevae" and "Savromaty" among Ukrainians) is attributed to ancient Scythian language and culture. [ [ Гринчук. Формування українського етносу (in Ukrainian)] ]

Several other minor non-Slavic ethnic groups undoubtedly partially contributed to formation of Central Ukrainian ethnic type. These include a row of Turkic tribes, such as Chorni Klobuky, Berendei and Torks, who were settled along the river Ros and Rusava and eventually all being absorbed by Ukrainians. Many Turkic place names in Ukraine as Karabachyn, Torets, Torky, Berdychiv (lit. "of Berendychi" i.e. Berendei) remain in these areas. Likewise, a number of Circassians (the oldest indigenous people of Northwest Caucasus) merged with and played some role in formation of Ukrainian ethnicity. So the city of Cherkasy traces its name and origin to a Circassian settlement. Some Turkic and Circassian elements can be traced in Ukrainian language, last names, culture etc. [For Circassian influence, see: [ Maksidov A.A. Families of the Adyghe peoples in Ukraine] ru icon]

In Western Ukraine, ancient Dacian influences can be traced. From the middle of the 1 st century (the peak period of Dacian society) until early 3 century, the left bank of the upper Dniester was populated by the Dacian tribe of Costoboci Transmontani (mentioned in Geography of Ptolomeus), who were the carriers of Lipica culture (of Verkhnya Lypytsya, Maydan Holohirskyy, Remezivtsi, Voronyaky etc.) The Dacian roots of Lipica culture is evidenced by findings of ceramic types, burning burials, houses analogical to those of Dacians in Romania. Costoboci were the most northernmost branch of Thracodacians and bordered with the carriers of Przeworsk culture to the north-west (i.e. Przeworsk culture settlement in Pidberiztsi near Lviv), Zarubintsy culture to the north who were all succeeded by Chernyakhov culture. It is with Costoboci was the fight of Romans against the Free Dacians in the 2nd century mentioned in different written sources. In the beginning of 3rd century Dacian archeological elements in Upper Dniester disappear. [В.М. Цигилик. Населення Верхнього Подністров’я перших століть нашої ери (Племена Липицької культури). Київ: Наукова Думка, 1975 (in Ukrainian)]

So Roman chronicles of the 1st century report that in the Carpathians there was a Dacian tribe of Karpi. Karp-At meant mountains of Karpi. From possible Dacian meaning "mountains" may derive the name of people karpi—those who live in the mountains. At any case, the area of inhabitance of Free Dacians covered western Ukraine, and besides Costoboci, to the northern Dacians belonged are the Anarti and Teurisci. Ukrainian mountainiers Hutsuls, inhabiting the areas of old land of Free Dacians are often stated as being of Dacian stock. Archeologists also discovered several Celtic settlements in Zakarpattia Oblast of southwestern Ukraine. There were numerous cases of Jewish conversion to Eastern Orthodox or Catholic faith in Ukraine in medieval and early modern eras, whether forced (during the Deluge or Koliyivshchyna) or voluntary. Several cossack surnames are traced to such converts (see Jewish Cossacks). Though non-Slavic elements did have some impacts on the Ukrainians, as mentioned above, they are predominantly Slavs.

DNA tests of Y chromosomes from representative sample of Ukrainians were analyzed for composition and frequencies of haplogroups. In the Ukrainian gene, pool six haplogroups were revealed: E, F (including G and I), J, N3, P, and R1a1. The major haplogroup in the Ukrainian gene pool, Haplogroup R1a is thought to mark the migration patterns of the early Indo-Europeans and is associated with the distribution of the Kurgan archaeological culture. The second major haplogroup is haplogroup F, which is a combination of the lineages differing by the time of appearance. Haplogroup P found represents the genetic contribution of the population originating from the ancient autochthonous population of Europe. Haplogroup J and Haplogroup E mark the migration patterns of the Middle-Eastern agriculturists during the Neolithic. The presence of the N3 lineage is likely explained by a contribution of the assimilated Finno Ugric tribes. [ [ Gene Pool Structure of Eastern Ukrainians as Inferred from the Y-Chromosome Haplogroups.Russian Journal of Genetics, Volume 40, Number 3 / March, 2004.] ] A recent study (Rebala et al. 2007) studied several Slavic populations with the aim of localizing the Proto-Slavic homeland. A significant finding of this study is that according to the authors most Slavic populations have similar Y chromosome pools, and this similarity can be traced to an origin in middle Dnieper basin of the Ukraine. [ [ Rebala K et al. (2007), "Y-STR variation among Slavs: evidence for the Slavic homeland in the middle Dnieper basin", Journal of Human Genetics, 52:406-14] ]


Ukraine had a very turbulent history, a fact explained by its geographical position. Up to the fifteenth century, Ukrainians were part of the Old East Slavic stock which also gave rise to the Belarusians and Russians. However, long history of separation and foreign influences have perceptibly reshaped their ethnolinguistic identity splitting them from the rest of East Slavs.

The history of independent statehood in Ukraine is started with the Cossacks. The Cossacks of Zaporizhia since the late fifteenth century controlled the lower bends of the river Dnieper, between Russia, Poland and the Tatars of Crimea, with the fortified capital, Zaporizhian Sich. They were formally recognized as a state, the Zaporozhian Host, by treaty with Poland in 1649.

Modern day Ukraine encompasses the seats of six of the original twelve principalities of the ancient Kievan Rus empire which flourished from 882 to 1245 AD. Those principalities were Halych, Volodymyr-Volhynia, Kyiv, Pereyaslavl, Chernihiv, and Novhorod-Serverskyi and comprised the major centers of power of Kyivan Rus in its heyday. The 13th century Mongol invasion devastated Kievan Rus'. Kiev was totally destroyed in 1240. [ [ The Destruction of Kiev] ] Subsequent to the fall of a united Halych-Volodymr-Volhynia in 1342, Ukraine/Ruthenia became the Grand Duchy of Lithuania and later of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, and still later of the Russian, Ottoman and Austo-Hungarian empires, Poland and the Soviet Union, finally gaining its independence on August 24, 1991.

Modern Ukrainian national identity continued to develop, especially in opposition to foreign rule in the nineteenth century. In Imperial Russia the use of the Ukrainian language was discouraged and banned at different times in history; [ [ Encyclopedia of Ukraine "Ems Ukaz"] ] however, as many were illiterate, persecutions had little effect. During the Soviet era, the Ukrainian language was at times suppressed at others tolerated or even encouraged.

From 1932-1933 millions of Ukrainians starved to death in a famine, known as the Holodomor. Modern scholarly estimates of the direct loss of human life due to the famine range between 2.6 millionFrance Meslè et Jacques Vallin avec des contributions de Vladimir Shkolnikov, Serhii Pyrozhkov et Serguei Adamets, [ Mortalite et cause de dècès en Ukraine au XX siècle] p.28, see also France Meslé, Gilles Pison, Jacques Vallin [ France-Ukraine: Demographic Twins Separated by History] , "Population and societies", N°413, juin 2005] Jacques Vallin, France Mesle, Serguei Adamets, Serhii Pyrozhkov, [ A New Estimate of Ukrainian Population Losses during the Crises of the 1930s and 1940s] , "Population Studies", Vol. 56, No. 3. (Nov., 2002), pp. 249-264] and 3-3.5 millionStanislav Kulchytsky, "How many of us perished in Holodomor in 1933", Zerkalo Nedeli, November 23-29, 2002. Available online [ in Russian] and [ in Ukrainian] ] although much higher numbers are sometimes published in the media and cited in political debates.Peter Finn, [ Aftermath of a Soviet Famine] , "The Washington Post", April 27, 2008, "There are no exact figures on how many died. Modern historians place the number between 2.5 million and 3.5 million. Yushchenko and others have said at least 10 million were killed." ] As of March 2008, the parliament of Ukraine and the governments of several countries have recognized the Holodomor as an act of genocide.Sources differ on interpreting various statements from different branches of different governments as to whether they amount to the official recognition of the Famine as Genocide by the country. For example, after the statement issued by the Latvian Sejm on March 13, 2008, the total number of countries is given as 19 (according to "Ukrainian BBC": [ "Латвія визнала Голодомор ґеноцидом"] ), 16 (according to "Korrespondent", Russian edition: [ "После продолжительных дебатов Сейм Латвии признал Голодомор геноцидом украинцев"] ), "more than 10" (according to "Korrespondent", Ukrainian edition: [ "Латвія визнала Голодомор 1932-33 рр. геноцидом українців"] )]



Ukrainian (украї́нська мо́ва, "ukrayins'ka mova", IPA | [ukraˈjinʲsʲka ˈmɔʋa] ) is a language of the East Slavic subgroup of the Slavic languages. It is the only official state language of Ukraine. Written Ukrainian uses a Cyrillic alphabet. The language shares some vocabulary with the languages of the neighboring Slavic nations, most notably with Belarusian, Polish, Russian and Slovak.

The Ukrainian language traces its origins to the Old East Slavic language of the medieval state of Kievan Rus'. In its earlier stages it was called Ruthenian or Little Russian. Ukrainian, along with other East Slavic languages, is a lineal descendant of the colloquial language used in Kievan Rus' (10th–13th century). [cite web|url=|title=Ukrainian language|accessdate=2007-08-05|work=Encyclopædia Britannica]

The language has persisted despite several periods of bans and/or discouragement throughout centuries as it has always nevertheless maintained a sufficient base among the people of Ukraine, its folklore songs, itinerant musicians, and prominent authors.


Ukrainians are predominantly Eastern Orthodox Christians. In the eastern and southern areas of Ukraine the Ukrainian Orthodox Church under the juristiction of the Moscow Patriarchate is the most common. In central and western Ukraine there is support for the Ukrainian Orthodox Church - Kiev Patriarchate headed by Patriarch Filaret and also in the western areas of Ukraine and with smaller support throughout the country there is support for the Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox Church headed by Metropolitan Mefodiy. In the Western region konown as Galicia the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, one of the Eastern Rite Catholic churches has a strong membership. Various Protestant churches have a growing presence among the Ukrainian population. [For more information, see History of Christianity in Ukraine and Religion in Ukraine] There are also ethnic minorities who practice Judaism and Islam.


Main article Music of Ukraine


Ukrainian dance refers to the traditional folk dances of the peoples of Ukraine. Today, Ukrainian dance is primarily represented by what ethnographers, folklorists and dance historians refer to as "Ukrainian Folk-Stage Dances", which are stylized representations of traditional dances and their characteristic movements that have been choreographed for concert dance performances. This stylized art form has so permeated the culture of Ukraine, that very few purely traditional forms of Ukrainian dance remain today.

Ukrainian Dance is often described as energetic, fast-paced, and entertaining, and along with traditional Easter eggs ("pysanky"), it is a characteristic example of Ukrainian culture instantly recognized and highly appreciated throughout the world.


The national symbols of the Ukrainians are the Flag of Ukraine and the Coat of arms of Ukraine.

The national flag of Ukraine is a blue and yellow bicolor rectangle. The color fields are of same form and equal size. The colors of the flag represent a blue sky above yellow fields of wheat [ [ Government portal- State symbols of Ukraine] ] [ [ Encyclopædia Britannica] ] [ [ CIA World Factbook - Flag of Ukraine] ] . The flag was designed for the convention of the Supreme Ruthenian Council, meeting in Lviv in October 1848. Its colors vere based on the coat-of-arms of the Galicia-Volhynia Principality [ [ FOTW:Ukraine - History of the Flag] ] .

Another theory states that colours of Ukrainian flag flagicon|Ukraine stem from the Swedish flag flagicon|Sweden. This theory goes back to the Battle of Poltava of 1709 when some Ukrainian cossack regiments changed sides and joined Swedes. In order to distinguish themselves in battle from cossacks loyal to Russian tzar Peter I they put on scarfs of Swedish soldiers [Похлёбкин В. В. Словарь международной символики и эмблематики. М. 1995 (in Russian)] . From that time the blue-and-yellow colours of Swedish flag became a symbol of independence from Russia.

The Coat of arms of Ukraine features the same colours found on the Ukrainian flag: a blue shield with yellow trident—the symbol of ancient Slavic tribes that once lived in Ukraine, later adopted by Ruthenian and Kievan Rus rulers.

ee also

* List of Ukrainians
* Rusyns
* Ruthenians
* Ukrainians in Russia





Online sources

* "How Rusyns Became Ukrainians", Zerkalo Nedeli ("the Mirror Weekly"), July, 2005. Available online [ in Russian] and [ in Ukrainian] .
* "When Was the Ukrainian Nation Born", Zerkalo Nedeli ("the Mirror Weekly"), April 23 - May 6, 2005. Available online [ in Russian] and [ in Ukrainian] .
* "'We are more "Russian" then them', the History of Myths and Sensations", Zerkalo Nedeli ("the Mirror Weekly"), January 27 - February 2, 2001. Available online [ in Russian] and [ in Ukrainian] .
* "External Migration - the Main Cause of Ethnically non-Ukrainian Population in Modern Ukraine". Zerkalo Nedeli ("the Mirror Weekly"), January 26 - February 1, 2002. Available online [ in Russian] and [ in Ukrainian] .
* Halyna Lozko, "Ukrainian ethnology. Ethnographic division of Ukraine" (in Ukrainian). Available [ online] .

External links

* [ Ukrainians on Encyclopedia of Ukraine]
* [ Races of Europe 1942-1943] (English)
* ['s Racial map of Europe, 1919] (English) "National Alumni" 1920, vol.7
* [ of Europe / Die Voelker Europas 1914] (German)
* [ Ethnographic map of Europe 1914] (English)
* [ Divisions of Europe in 1914] (German)
* [ Ethnic Territory of the Ukrainian people in the Late Nineteenth and Early Twentieth Centuries] (English)

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