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Rusyn: Language OR Dialect?

Hi, I study Ukrainian a lot and also have an interest in Slavic languages in general. I'm just wondering, according to Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rusyn_language#Classification) Ukrainians regard this language as a dialect of Ukrainian. So I'm just wondering, is Rusyn a language? Also if it is, how different is it from Ukrainian? Like, is it Spanish & Italian different?

April 16, 2016



Questions like this are very politicized. Mostly because some countries use them to endorse separatism and destabilize other countries or, on the contrary, to deny other countries' independence and sovereignty. Moreover, there is no a rigorously defined and widely accepted rule to tell a dialect form a language.


A "language" is just a popular dialect. The labeling of various dialects as "real languages" happens for political reasons. This is closely related to nationalism, and trying to deny speakers of minor dialects independence.


Thanks, do you know how similar the two languages are?


Nope, sorry, no idea :-)


i know Norwegian has many dialects too))


I haven't studied Rusyn yet, but it's on my list of languages I want to explore soon. From what I've read it is similar to Ukrainian, but distinct enough to be its own language. As for how distinct it is, I do not know but I would like to find out.


When you begin studying it, let me know :)


I'm Polish and it sounds shockingly similar to my native language, I felt like Czech and Slovak, but they use Cyrillic. I'm not even sure about this right now.


Ukrainians consider Rusyn as its dialect because it is said to be originated from Ukrainian. But it was a long time ago and Rusyn is very independent today. It has also its own dialects which depends on where you live. Because of its origin it is similar to Ukrainian, but it's also similar to other Slavic languages (e.g.Slovak, Polish, Russian). But there are also many differences. The alphabet differs a bit and also the vocabulary differs a lot.


I would say language. Love this beautiful language, hope will have time to learn.

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