Discussion in 'Other Slavic Languages' started by Pivra, Feb 22, 2006.

  1. Pivra Senior Member

    I would like to know about this language. My friend from Novi Sad said he can speak it. I searched in Wikipedia and it says that its an extinct language. I am pretty sure I could find it in this forum. Anyone know this language? Could you please give me some phrases?
  2. chuff

    chuff Senior Member

    Sample text

    Тож Шануйме Рідне Слово
    Од Велика Аж До Мала
    Вшытко Інше Зме Стратили
    Лем Бесіда Нам Остала
    Sample text

    Respect your native language
    From the oldest to the youngest
    While we've lost everything
    Only our language has remained

    Couldn't find much, sorry...
  3. DaleC Senior Member

    Why don't you first read Wikipedia about "Ruthenia" and "Carpathian Ruthenia"? Then you might have a better idea of what you're looking for.

    Just to read about Ruthenia, it's almost certain your friend is very confused. Novi Sad is in the north of present day Serbia. Ruthenia has not been used to refer to any part of Yugoslavia for centuries, if it ever was.

    In the last century, the term "Ruthenia" has consistently been used to refer to a part of Ukraine. From
  4. Xopxe Member

    Ruthenian - is a group of dialects, mainly in Transcarpathian oblast of the Ukraine.
    I`ve been there. I had severe problems with understanding of this language. Locals use it in informal speech. However most of them consider themselves Ukrainians. Separatist movement is marginal.
    The dialects have a lot of borrowings, mainly from Hungarian. For example, варєш - town.
    Солонина - lard, крумплі - potatos.
    The most prominent modern poet that uses local speech in his poems is Petro Midyanka, Петро Мідянка, a teacher from Широкий Луг. It is very hard to understand what he means :)) But sounds great.
  5. Blacklack Senior Member

    Ruthenians (Latinized form and supposedly derived from a Celtic tribe name) or Rusins (Rusyns) were originally applied (by people living to the west of them) to all the Ukrainians, especially those living in W. Ukraine which was in XIV – early XVII centuries the only densely populated Ukranian land. Ukrainians of Galicia called themselves "Rusyny" even in the beginning of XX c. Then this name remained only for Transcarpathian Ukrainians living in modern Ukraine and E. Slovakia. The most famous ethnic Ruthenian is Andy Warhol (Varchola).

    No confusion at all. There were two waves of W. Ukrainian emigration to former Yugoslavia beginning from XVIII c. The first one consisted of Carpathian Rusyns with no Ukrainian national identity (and later in Transcarpathia there was a strong movement to unify with Russians, which still has some supporters), the second one were Galician Rusyns already deeming theirselves Ukrainian.

    The Ruthenian language I think may be considered a rarely used literary language based on westernmost Ukrainian dialect.
  6. Grosvenor1 Member

    Scottish, resident in England, language English
    Anatole Lieven (I think that is how his name is spelled) made a passing reference to Ruthenian in a book about the Baltic states at the time of the USSR collapse. He was commenting on the Polish used by the Polish minority in Lithuania, and how Poles from Poland saw it as inaccurate and substandard. They attributed it to the influence of Russification but according to Lieven, the reason was more profound: The real language of Lithuanian Poles was either a form of Polish, or a form of Belorussian, or neither but a language he referred to as "Ruthenian", which he said was spoken in a dialect chain stretching south from the Baltic to Yugoslavia. Lieven did not claim in his book to speak any Slavic language, and I think he might have been misinformed.

    "Ruthenian" was also the word used in the Austro-Hungarian empire for the West Ukrainian spoken in the north-east corner of the empire.
  7. Kolan Banned

    Montréal (Québec)
    Russian (CCCP)
    It's probably worth of mentioning that there is a metal from the platinum group called Ruthenium. This name given to the chemical element by Osann in 1827 is believed to be a Latin name for Russia (Ruthenia) since the original sample was extracted from the Ural mountains ore.
  8. Blacklack Senior Member

    The northern border of Ruthenian (i.e. Ukrainian) lands cannot be anything near Baltic but... 1) Ukrainian nationalists claim that Belarussians inhabiting southern part of Belarus and Polish territory in the Białystok area (that's pretty close to Lithuania) are in fact ethnic Ukrainians and 2) Belarussians could have been called Rusins/Ruthenians as primarily Rus' (pl., sing.: Rusin) was name of all the Eastern Slavs and in times of Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth of ancient Ukrainians and Belarussians.
  9. Duya Senior Member

    Not in WR world
    Back to the topic, a (shortish) Wikipedia entry on the language originally referred (back then) in this thread is at Pannonian Rusyn language .
  10. franknagy

    franknagy Senior Member

    Gentle List Member:

    Is the Rusin a language or a dialect?
    The ideologists of the Russian expansion including Stalin denied the existence of the Ruthenian nationality and the Ruthenian language when the took away the Закарпатскую Область from Hungary and Czechoslovakia and annexed it to the Soviet Union.
    The Hungarian propaganda states that Rusin is a language because they were the only nationality in 1848-49 which did not rebel against Hungary unlike all others.

    In general what is a language and what is only dialect is a political question.
    The linguists argue in vain when political interest are stronger.
    pikk 028.png
  11. francisgranada Senior Member

    No, if we are speaking about the Rusyn (also Rusnak). It is spoken in some regions of Eastern Slovakia, and it is definetely not a Slovak dialect, even if nowadays influenced by the Slovak language (mainly East Slovak dialects).
  12. swintok Senior Member

    English - Canada
    The question of the Rusyny (Ruthenians) and their language is an interesting one, since a lot depends on the political leanings of the person speaking. What is clear is that the term "Ruthenian" is the Latin rendering of the Slavic adjective руський (to use the Ukrainian spelling). The term руський was used by a large part of the East Slavs for centuries as a self-identifier for themselves and their language. For Ukrainians and Belarusan, the term was gradually replaced with український and беларускі starting in the mid-19th century, mainly for political reasons to distinguish themselves from the Russians, who continue to use the term русский. For a further historical perspective on the term, see the following link:

    This article is obviously written from a Ukrainian point of view. From this perspective, the people who still call themselves Ruthenians are either:
    1. Ukrainians who do not yet realise it since they never developed a Ukrainian national consciousness because they were separated from the rest of Ukraine (through political boundaries or emigration) at a certain point of history; or
    2. Russian agents or Russophiles who continue to insist on a separate identity in order to divide the Ukrainian nation and who hold separatist views (in Transcarpathia).

    This is obviously a simplification of the Ukrainian perspective, but it is often what the conversation about Ruthenians degenerates to in Ukrainian circles in Ukraine and in the Ukrainian communities abroad.

    Though the Russians still call themselves русский, they obviously do not use the term Ruthenian to describe themselves. Politically, however, the Ruthenian movement in Transcarpathia and eastern Slovakia was historically supported by Moscow to emphasise the view that all East Slavs are the same people and as a counter to Ukrainian nationalism. As franknagy pointed out, however, in Soviet times Moscow actively discouraged a separate Ruthenian identity to prevent irredentist claims on the eastern borderlands of the USSR and also to provide an excuse to meddle in Czechoslovak and Polish affairs. Some argue that Moscow has come full circle and is again supporting the Ruthenian cause in order to create a Transdnistria-type situation in Western Ukraine.

    The Austro-Hungarian Empire was at various points of the 19th century favourable to a separate Ruthenian identity (i.e., their East Slavs were different from the East Slavs living in the Russian Empire). Politically, they were threatened by irredentist claims by Moscow that all people who called themselves руський were Russian and therefore should be united in the Russian Empire (or Soviet Union). Secondly, as franknagy pointed out, the Hungarians liked the Ruthenians because they felt that the Ruthenians did not betray them by rising up in 1848-49.

    In the former Yugoslavia, the East Slavs that settled in Bosnia and Serbia are divided between those who define themselves as Ruthenian and those who define themselves as Ukrainian (a much smaller number). Those that define themselves as Ruthenian left what is now Western Ukraine and settled in Bosnia and Serbia in the early- to mid-19th century, before the areas they left began to adopt a Ukrainian national identity. Those that define themselves as Ukrainians often came from the same regions and even the same villages as the earlier settlers, but migrated to Bosnia and Serbia in the late-19th and early 20th centuries, after their areas had adopted a Ukrainian national identity.

    For a further study on the controversy of the whole Ruthenian (Rusyn) question, see:

    For the perspective of a vocal proponant of a seperate Ruthenian (Rusyn) identity, Dr. Paul Magosci, see the following:

    Since questions of language and identity are by definition political and sociological rather than linguistic, in Western Ukraine, Eastern Slovakia, Bosnia, Serbia, and the United States you can find people even within the same family who adopt opposing identities and ways of describing themselves and their language. One brother is adamant that he is Ruthenian and speaks Ruthenian, another brother is adamant that he is Ukrainian and speaks Ukrainian (despite speaking the same language as his brother), and a third is adamant that he is Russian and speaks a dialect of Russian.
  13. franknagy

    franknagy Senior Member

    Respected Swintok,
    Thank you for the detailed arguments and the cited opposing articles and especially for the "History of Ukraine" which helps me fill the gap between the foundation of the Russian State in Kiiv and the Tartar invasion in my knowledge of history.
    (I have been taught only about the Hungarian trials to conquest Halich.)
    I had a private chemistry pupil whose family immigrated from The Ukraine to Hungary. The family was partly Ucranian and party Russian.


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