All Countries of the World


Asia Africa Europe Oceania Caribbean European Union Middle East North America Central America South America

You are here: Home > Countries in Europe > East Europe Countries > Belarus

Belarus Population

People in Belarus

9.5 million people live in Belarus. The majority of them live in a city, namely 79 out of 100 people. Minsk is the largest city with just under two million inhabitants. Gomel, Mahiljou, Vitebsk, Hrodna and Brest are other large cities with at least 300,000 inhabitants.

The birth rate is low with 1.5 children and so the population has been falling since 1993. In 1989 more than ten million people lived in the country. The population is also getting older.

Most of the residents are Belarusians, namely 83 percent. The largest minority are Russians with 8.3 percent. Poles and Ukrainians are represented with 3.1 and 1.7 percent.

Languages in Belarus

Belarusian and Russian are the two official languages ​​in the country. However, the majority of 75 percent speak Russian on a daily basis. The language of instruction is also Russian. Only twelve percent speak Belarusian every day. Then there is a mixture of both languages. This mixed language is called Trassjanka.

Belarusian developed from a common language with Russian and Ukrainian. To a certain extent, the speakers understand each other. Like these two languages, Belarusian is also written in the Cyrillic alphabet. But there is also the letter ў and again three letters that occur in Russian are missing (и, щ and ъ).

Spelling follows the sounds in Russian. While in Russian an unstressed o is pronounced like a, in Belarusian it is actually written with a. Water is written in Russian вода, in Belarusian вада. But the words are pronounced the same ( wadá ). However, the sounds h and g are both represented by the letter г. Hence, Gomel and Homel are names for the same city.

Belorussian also differs from Russian by a few borrowings from Polish, i.e. its western neighbor. The vocabulary also shows some other differences.

Religions in Belarus

82 percent of the population belong to the Russian Orthodox Church. The remainder are divided between Roman Catholic, Protestant, Muslim and Jewish communities. Copyright 2020 All Rights Reserved