Ukrainian Translation Services
Ukrainian Language: Key Facts
Initially known as Ruthenian, the Ukrainian language is an East Slavic language spoken in Ukraine and other South-Eastern European countries. Referred to as Ukraïns’ka mova, Ukrainian derives from the colloquial language spoken between the 10th and 13th centuries in Kievan Rus, the first East Slavic State.
What brings Ukrainian closer to languages like Russian and Belarusian is the use of the Cyrillic alphabet and geographic proximity. It was not until after the 13th century that Ukrainian idiomatically distinguished itself from these two languages. However, it is less similar to Russian than Belarusian is.
After the demise of Kievan Rus in the 13th century, the unique dialectal characteristics between Ukrainian and Belarusian and Russian became prominent. However, it was not until the end of the 18th century that the Ukrainian literary language emerged from the vernacular language.
Containing numerous words borrowed from Polish and fewer from Church Slavonic than Russian, Ukrainian is spoken in countries like Moldova, Kazakhstan, Poland, Romania, Lithuania, and Slovakia, where there are affluent Ukrainian communities.
Literary Ukrainian Language
The first-ever Ukrainian works written in Kievan Rus between the 11th and the 13th century were produced in Church Slavonic and are part of the shared cultural heritage of the Russians and Belarusians. After the Mongol invasion of the 13th century, Ukrainian literature saw a decline that continued until the 16th century, when it saw a miraculous revival. Before the dawn of the 19th century, the Ukrainian language had become the primary means of literary expression. It was the start of a prolific Ukrainian writing era.
• 1798 – Ivan Kotlyarevsky heralds the era of Ukrainian epic poetry with his Eneida, a burlesque travesty of Virgil’s Aeneid famous for transforming the classic heroes into Ukrainian Cossacks.
• 1834 – Hryhorii Kvitka-Osnovianenko starts off the era of modern Ukrainian prose, with his novel Marusya.
• 1917 – Ukrainian gains equal status with Russian as a language of the administration
• 1930s – Attempts of massive russification hindered the affirmation of Ukrainian as the sole official language of the land.
• 1989 – Ukrainian becomes the official language of Ukraine.
• 1996 – Its status as the country’s sole official language is enshrined in the Ukrainian constitution.
There are three main dialects in Ukrainian, varying per region:
• Southwestern (південно-західне наріччя or pivdenno-zakhidne narichchia): Podilian, Volhynian, Upper Dniestrian, Pokuttia-Bukovina, Hutsul, Upper Sannian, Boyko, Lemko, Transcarpathian
• Southeastern (південно-східне наріччя or pivdenno-skhidne narichchia): Middle Dnieprian, Slobozhan, Steppe
• Northern (північне наріччя or pivnichne narichchia): Eastern Polissian, Central Polissian, Western Polissian
The sound of Ukrainian language
Population vs. Internet Penetration
31,100,000 (31.10 million)
Data according to
worldometers.info & dataportal.com
Ukrainian is the 26th most widely spoken language globally by the number of speakers.
It is the first language of 37 million people and the second language of 15 million of the world’s population.
According to the dictionary of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, modern Ukrainian has 256,000 words and is included in the list of languages still evolving at present.
The first Ukrainian ABC book (Азбука) was printed by Ivan Fedorov in 1574, in Lviv.
Ukrainian Translation Tips
One of the particularities of the Ukrainian language is inflexion. A word may have dozens of endings (suffixes), making it challenging to manage specific terminology with generic QA tools.
Word order in Ukrainian is very different from English, for example. So, don’t break sentences apart.
Context is king. Make sure to give your translators as much context as possible. A simple English word such as “Email” may be translated differently if the word appeared on a button on an email platform to send an email, or if it denoted a communication technology solution, or a request to provide an email address on an online form.
Your Ukrainian Translation Service Partner
Need help translation government-issued documents or perhaps a touch of creativity to your marketing materials? You can count on Pangea Global. We know exactly how to bring your content to life in Ukrainian. Just drop us a line!
Our Ukrainian language services include translation and localization from and to Ukrainian, with a focus on rendering this language’s uniqueness into 75+ target languages. Our services span legal and certified translation, marketing translation and localization, technical and scientific translation, pharmaceutical, healthcare translation, finance translation and localization, and content creation. We know exactly how to bring your content to life in Ukrainian. Just drop us a line!