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Republic of Mordovia (English)
Республика Мордовия (Russian)
Мордовия Республикась (Mordvin)
-  Republic  -
Map of Russia - Republic of Mordovia (2008-03).svg
Coordinates: 54°11′N 45°11′E / 54.183°N 45.183°E / 54.183; 45.183Coordinates: 54°11′N 45°11′E / 54.183°N 45.183°E / 54.183; 45.183
Coat of Arms of Mordovia.svg
Coat of arms of Mordovia
Flag of Mordovia.svg
Flag of Mordovia
Anthem National Anthem of the Republic of Mordovia[citation needed]
Political status
Country Russia
Political status Republic
Federal district Volga[1]
Economic region Volga-Vyatka[2]
Capital Saransk[citation needed]
Official languages Russian[3]; Russian, Mordvin (Moksha and Erzya)[4]
Population (2002 Census)[5] 888,766 inhabitants
- Rank within Russia 62nd
- Urban[5] 59.8%
- Rural[5] 40.2%
- Density 34 /km2 (100/sq mi)[6]
Area (as of the 2002 Census)[7] 26,200 km2 (10,115.9 sq mi)
- Rank within Russia 68th
Established January 10, 1930[citation needed]
License plates 13
ISO 3166-2:RU RU-MO
Time zone MSK/MSD (UTC+3/+4)
Government (as of November 2008)
Head[8] Nikolay Merkushkin[9]
Legislature State Assembly[8]
Constitution Constitution of the Republic of Mordovia
Official website

Republic of Mordovia (Russian: Респу́блика Мордо́вия, Respublika Mordoviya; Moksha/Erzya: Мордовия Республикась, Mordoviya Respublikas') or Mordvinia is a federal subject of Russia (a republic). The direct romanization of the republic's name is Respublika Mordoviya.



The Republic is located in the eastern part of the East European Plain of the Russian Federation. The western part of the republic is situated in the Oka Don Plain; its eastern and central parts in the Volga Elevation.



There are 114 rivers in Mordovia. Major rivers include:


There are approximately five hundred lakes in Mordovia.

Natural resources

Natural resources include peat, mineral waters, and others.


Climate is moderately continental.

  • Average January temperature: −11 °C (12.2 °F)
  • Average July temperature: +19 °C (66.2 °F)
  • Average annual precipitation: ~500 mm (20 in)

Administrative divisions


  • Population: 888,766 (2002)
    • Urban: 531,478 (59.8%)
    • Rural: 357,288 (40.2%)
    • Male: 408,556 (46.0%)
    • Female: 480,210 (54.0%)
  • Females per 1000 males: 1,175
  • Average age: 38.7 years
    • Urban: 36.8 years
    • Rural: 41.3 years
    • Male: 35.9 years
    • Female: 41.2 years
  • Number of households: 332,995 (with 866,749 people)
    • Urban: 197,923 (with 525,808 people)
    • Rural: 135,072 (with 340,941 people)
  • Vital statistics
Source: Russian Federal State Statistics Service
Births Deaths Birth rate Death rate
1970 15,423 9,048 15.0 8.8
1975 14,983 9,689 14.9 9.7
1980 14,320 10,287 14.6 10.5
1985 15,123 11,152 15.7 11.6
1990 12,910 11,018 13.4 11.4
1991 11,537 11,079 12.0 11.5
1992 10,215 11,574 10.6 12.0
1993 9,276 13,217 9.7 13.8
1994 8,916 14,748 9.3 15.4
1995 8,589 13,460 9.0 14.1
1996 7,883 13,579 8.3 14.4
1997 7,493 13,631 8.0 14.5
1998 7,469 13,116 8.0 14.1
1999 6,994 14,200 7.6 15.4
2000 7,148 14,838 7.8 16.2
2001 7,049 14,200 7.8 15.7
2002 7,131 14,918 8.0 16.7
2003 7,433 15,170 8.4 17.2
2004 7,689 14,768 8.8 16.9
2005 7,394 14,823 8.6 17.2
2006 7,367 13,981 8.6 16.4
2007 7,728 13,320 9.2 15.8
2008 8,215 13,167 9.8 15.7
  • Ethnic groups

The Mordvin people are a Finnic group speaking two related languages, Moksha and Erzya. The two languages have been dealt with at various times as dialects of one Mordvinian language. In reality there are two orthographies with parallel newsmedia in the Republic of Mordovia where approximately only one third of all Mordvinian live. During the Soviet period, school textbooks were published in each language.[10]

According to the 2002 Census, Russians make up 60.8% of the republic's population, while ethnic Mordvins are only 31.9%. Other groups include Tatars (5.2%), Ukrainians (0.5%), and a host of smaller groups, each accounting for less than 0.5% of the total population. 3,700 people (0.4%) did not indicate their nationalities during the Census.

census 1939 census 1959 census 1970 census 1979 census 1989 census 2002
Mordvins 405,031 (34.1%) 357,978 (35.8%) 364,689 (35.4%) 338,898 (34.2%) 313,420 (32.5%) 283,861 (31.9%)
Russians 719,117 (60.5%) 590,557 (59.0%) 606,817 (58.9%) 591,212 (59.7%) 586,147 (60.8%) 540,717 (60.8%)
Tatars 47,386 (4.0%) 38,636 (3.9%) 44,954 (4.4%) 45,765 (4.6%) 47,328 (4.9%) 46,261 (5.2%)
Ukrainians 7,586 (0.6%) 6,554 (0.7%) 6,033 (0.6%) 5,622 (0.6%) 6,461 (0.7%) 4,801 (0.5%)
Others 8,884 (0.7%) 6,468 (0.6%) 7,069 (0.7%) 8,012 (0.8%) 10,148 (1.1%) 13,126 (1.5%)


Mordovia map

Early history

Earliest archaeological signs of human beings in the area of Mordovia are from the Neolithic era. Finno-Ugric Mordvins are mentioned in written sources in 6th century. Later, Mordvins were under the influence of both Volga Bulgaria and Kievan Rus. Mordvin princes sometimes raided Muroma and Volga Bulgaria, and often despoiled each other's holdings.

Mongol rule

The Mongols conquered vast areas of Eastern Europe in 13th century. They established the khanate of the Golden Horde in 1241, subjugating the area of Mordovia. Mordvins fought against Mongols and later alongside with Russians[citation needed]. Mordvin lands territorially belonged to Mukhsha Ulus. The Golden Horde disintegrated in 1430s, which resulted in some Mordvins becoming subjects of Khanate of Kazan, whereas other were incorporated to the Muscovy.

Russian rule

When Ivan IV of Russia annexed the khanate of Kazan in 1552, the Mordovin lands were subjugated to the Russian tsars. The Mordvin elite rapidly assumed Russian language and customs, whereas 1821 saw the publication of the New Testament in Erzya to address the non-elite population. In rural areas, Mordvin culture was preserved. Russians started to convert Mordvins to Orthodox Christianity in mid-1700s. Mordvins gave up their own shamanist religion only slowly, however, and many of shamanist features were preserved as parts of local culture though the population became nominally Christian. Translations of literature to Mordvin languages were mostly religious books. In 1700s, the Latin alphabet was used in writing Mordvin, but from the mid-1800s, Cyrillic was used.

Part of the Soviet Union

During the Russian revolution and civil war, Mordovia was held mostly by opponents of Bolsheviks. When the Bolsheviks prevailed in the war, Mordovia became a part of the Soviet Union. In 1925, the Soviet government founded autonomous districts and village councils in the area of Mordvins. During the Soviet era, two written languages were developed: based on the Erzya dialect in 1922 and on the Moksha dialect in 1923, both using Cyrillic script. The autonomous district of Mordvins was founded on 16 July 1928 and it was elevated to autonomous area on 10 January 1930. The autonomous area was formed as the Autonomous Socialist Soviet Republic of Mordovia on 20 December 1934.

Part of the Russian Federation

When the Soviet Union disintegrated, ASSR of Mordvins proclaimed itself the Republic of Mordovia in 1991, and remained a part of Federation of Russia. The Republic of Mordovia in its present form has existed since January 25, 1994.


The head of government in the Republic of Mordovia is the Head of the Republic. As of 2004, the head of the republic is Nikolay Merkushkin, who was elected in 1995.

The State Assembly is the legislature of the republic.


The most developed industries are machine building, chemical, woodworking, and food industries. Most of the industrial enterprises are located in the capital Saransk, as well as in the towns of Kovylkino and Ruzayevka, and in the urban-type settlements of Chamzinka and Komsomolsky.


There are many museums in Mordovia. The largest ones include the Mordovian Republican United Museum of Regional Studies and the Museum of Mordvinian Culture in Saransk.

The National Library of the Republic of Mordovia is the largest library in the republic.

The State Puppet Theater of the Republic of Mordovia, located in Saransk, is well-known in Russia. Most of the plays played in this theater are Russian fairy-tales.

Erzya literature experienced a renaissance in the 1920s and 1930s.


The most important facilities of higher education include Mordovian State University and Mordovian State Pedagogical Institute in Saransk.


The prevailing confession is the Russian Orthodox Church. Sunni Islam, practiced mostly by Tatars, is the biggest religious minority.


  1. ^ Президент Российской Федерации. Указ №849 от 13 мая 2000 г. «О полномочном представителе Президента Российской Федерации в федеральном округе». Вступил в силу 13 мая 2000 г. Опубликован: "Собрание законодательства РФ", №20, ст. 2112, 15 мая 2000 г. (President of the Russian Federation. Decree #849 of May 13, 2000 On the Plenipotentiary Representative of the President of the Russian Federation in a Federal District. Effective as of May 13, 2000).
  2. ^ Госстандарт Российской Федерации. №ОК 024-95 27 декабря 1995 г. «Общероссийский классификатор экономических регионов. 2. Экономические районы», в ред. Изменения №5/2001 ОКЭР. (Gosstandart of the Russian Federation. #OK 024-95 December 27, 1995 Russian Classification of Economic Regions. 2. Economic Regions, as amended by the Amendment #5/2001 OKER. ).
  3. ^ According to Article 68.1 of the Constitution of Russia, Russian is the official language on the whole territory of the Russian Federation. Article 68.2 further stipulates that only the republics have the right to establish official languages other than Russian.
  4. ^ Constitution, Article 13
  5. ^ a b c Федеральная служба государственной статистики (Federal State Statistics Service) (2004-05-21). "Численность населения России, субъектов Российской Федерации в составе федеральных округов, районов, городских поселений, сельских населённых пунктов – районных центров и сельских населённых пунктов с населением 3 тысячи и более человек (Population of Russia, its federal districts, federal subjects, districts, urban localities, rural localities—administrative centers, and rural localities with population of over 3,000)" (in Russian). Всероссийская перепись населения 2002 года (All-Russia Population Census of 2002). Federal State Statistics Service. Retrieved 2010-03-01. 
  6. ^ The value of density was calculated automatically by dividing the 2002 Census population by the area specified in the infobox. Please note that this value may not be accurate as the area specified in the infobox is not necessarily reported for the same year as the Census (2002).
  7. ^ Федеральная служба государственной статистики (Federal State Statistics Service) (2004-05-21). "Территория, число районов, населённых пунктов и сельских администраций по субъектам Российской Федерации (Territory, Number of Districts, Inhabited Localities, and Rural Administration by Federal Subjects of the Russian Federation)" (in Russian). Всероссийская перепись населения 2002 года (All-Russia Population Census of 2002). Federal State Statistics Service. Retrieved 2008-10-17. 
  8. ^ a b Constitution, Article 10.3
  9. ^ Official website of the Republic of Mordovia. Nikolay Ivanovich Merkushkin (Russian)
  10. ^ Barbara A. Anderson and Brian D. Silver, "Equality, Efficiency, and Politics in Soviet Bilingual Education Policy, 1934-1980," American Political Science Review 78 (December 1984): 1019-1039.


  • Конституционное собрание Республики Мордовия. 21 сентября 1995 г. «Конституция Республики Мордовия», в ред. Закона №20-З от 20 мая 2008 г. (Constitutional Assembly of the Republic of Mordovia. September 21, 1995 Constitution of the Republic of Mordovia, as amended by the Law #20-Z of May 20, 2008. ).

See also

External links



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