How Different Are Russian and Ukrainian???

This video is all about the differences (and similarities!) between Russian and Ukrainian!
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Special thanks to Dani Volynsky for his Russian audio samples, and Anton Som for his Ukrainian audio samples, ideas, and feedback. And additional thanks goes to some other native speakers who gave valuable input and feedback for this video, including Ihor Khodzhaniiazov (and others!).
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The following images are used under Creative Commons Sharealike license: . Author: Lvivske. Adaptation: Anton Som. . Author: Russianname. . Authors: Krzysztof, Knutux. . Author: SeikoEn. . Author: Koryakov Yuri. . Author: Samotny Wędrowiec.
Still images which contain the above images (or adaptations thereof) are offered for use under the CC Sharealike license.
Main: "Gisele Revisited" by South London Hifi.
Outro: "In the Corner" by John Deley.

Komentáře: 25 581 

  1. pokrec


    They are VERY distinct.

  2. T. Anderson

    T. Anderson

    I am a linguist and a historian who speaks Russian, Belarusian, Ukrainian and Polish languages of which the first two are my native languages, and I endorse this video as correct, well researched and informative. Well done!

  3. S S

    S S

    Very interesting. As a Pole, I was surprised how much common Ukrainian has with Polish. I’ve always thought that it’s way closer to Russian. Being taught Russian at schools, it’s easier for me to listen to Russian than Ukrainian. Younger generation of Poles doesn’t have that bias. They don’t get either Russian or Ukrainian.😉

  4. Mike Aleksandrov

    Mike Aleksandrov

    As a Ukrainian, who knows both languages, I would say that the strongest argument to highlight that these both languages are different would be to give the same text in 2 audio versions to compare. Vocally and phonetically they are very easy to differentiate.

  5. Onions Eggplant

    Onions Eggplant

    As a person who grew up in the south of Russia, which was populated by the settlers from Zaporozhye (Ukraine), I find it very easy to understand Ukrainian. I'd suspect that ppl from around Moscow would have a harder time with Ukrainian.

  6. Danylo Bonk

    Danylo Bonk

    I am a Ukrainian from Lviv and am shocked by how accurate this guy is. As a person who speaks Ukrainian and recently learned how to speak fluent Russian, I had really seen and understood the differences between the two languages. Their relationship is similar to that of Italian and Spanish.

  7. Ally


    Před rokem

    I am from the Netherlands and if I got a euro for every time someone told me: "if you speak German, you basically speak Dutch, trust me." I would be rich. I imagine it is kind of the same for Ukraine. The fact that it sounds the same at first doesn't mean it is the same. XD

  8. Lana R

    Lana R

    A word "фляжка" ("flyazhka") in Russian language also exists. It means pocket flask for alcoholic drinks.

  9. Alex S.

    Alex S.

    I was visiting Ukraine in September 2021 - as per my observation 80% of Kyiv speaks Russian, 90% of Kharkiv speaks Russian, and 99% of Odesa speak Russian! My wife's family (she is from Poltava) speaks Russian as well, even though everyone considers themselves to be Ukrainian). Truly it is a puzzlefactory!

  10. オリジナルイタリア人


    I’m Italian and I speak Russian. I would say that I can understand 60% of an Ukrainian dialogue. For me (although it is a very simplistic comparison), the difference between Ukrainian and Russian is similar to the difference between Italian and Spanish.

  11. hadaka ufkelke

    hadaka ufkelke

    the Russian language received a huge influence of the Bulgarian language, while the Ukrainian language received the influence of the Polish but not so much

  12. Yurkee


    As Croatian and us being Slavs aswell there's around 50-60% of me flat out simply understanding what is being said (especially with use of some Polish and Germanic words that our Northern dialects have picked up on like "Cukar", while south Croats say "Šećer")... In a pinch if you put different Slavs in one room they would either understand eachother or kill eachother... Or both 😂

  13. Kandesbunzlerin Merkela Angel

    Kandesbunzlerin Merkela Angel

    This video is probably getting a good amount of attention now.

  14. Jessica Hebin

    Jessica Hebin

    Interesting that theres a Ukrainian-Russian mashup language. Kind of like how Latin America has Spanglish! (Spanish/English)

  15. Александр Бигулов

    Александр Бигулов

    Před 21 dnem

    As a Russian with only one native language I can say that Ukrainian can become clearly intelligeblly after several months of reading something on it with translator.

  16. Viatorina


    I'm a Pole and they sound pretty similar to me, although Russian seems to have more soft consonants and very different rhythm - it's more sing-songy, while Ukrainian seems more guttural, making it more similar to Polish. And indeed it seems like there is more familiar vocabulary.

  17. Wezz


    I’m a Russian learner, and I can say that Russian looks easier than Ukranian after watching this video 😂

  18. Zoran Davidović

    Zoran Davidović

    Fun facts: In Serbian "chas" or "čas" or "час" means both "time" and "hour", "nedilya" or "nedelja" or "недеља" means both "sunday" and "week", "layati" or "layat" or "lajati" or "лајати" means both "to bark" and "to scold" or more accurately "to swear" or to "talk dirty" or "to talk big but do nothing".

  19. Bahador Alast

    Bahador Alast

    Před 2 lety

    Thanks Paul. That was great!

  20. Nata Nata

    Nata Nata

    It's true, the differences are palpable. Anyway it is possible for a Russian-speaking person to understand the Ukrainian language. Despite of the fact that Ukrainian belongs to the East Slavic languages, such as Russian and Belarusian, it is much closer in pronunciation and vocabulary to the West Slavic languages (Polish, Czech, Slovak). I'm Russian-speaking, it's easier for me to understand a Belarusian than Ukrainian. Also, Russian speakers are closer to the South Slavic language group (Bulgarian, Serbo-Croatian, Slovenian, etc.). I communicate with a girl from Bosnia, almost in Russian. That is, she understands my Russian, and I understand her Bosnian. So if do you want to find languges that have more similarities with Russian consider Balcan ones.