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14 October 2014
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Belarusian, Belarusan

Related languages Belarusian is an Eastern Slavonic language, most closely related to Russian and Ukrainian.
European speakers 10,200,000 speakers
Territories Belarus is the official language in Belarus. Home speakers can be found in Poland, Latvia, Lithuania, Russia, Ukraine and Estonia.
Alphabet Cyrillic, although the newspaper Nasha Niva ('Our Cornfield'), first published in 1906, appeared in 1991 in both Latin and Cyrillic editions, catering for the large Catholic population.
First examples Belarusian first appeared in a rare and important historical document, the 1229 treaty between the regional rulers of Smolensk, Riga and Gotland.
Other facts Other languages have dominated Belarus since the 16th century, in particular Polish and then Russian. When Belarus became independent in 1991, Belarusian was made the sole official language, and was pushed forward in place of Russian: in three years all place names, personal names had to be renamed in Belarusian; civil servants were given five years to learn the language, and in ten years it was to become the sole means of communication in law and education. But it proved too great an upheaval in too short a space of time, and in 1995 the tongue-tied population voted to give the more familiar Russian equal official status.

Key Phrases
Pryemna naznaiomitstsa.
Pleased to meet you.
Da pabachen'nia.
Thank you.
Maio imia ...
My name is ...
Tsi Vy razmauliaetse pa-angel'sku?
Do you speak English?
Prabachtse, ia ne razmauliaiu pa-belarusku.
I'm sorry, I don't speak Belarusian.
Dalamazhytse, kali laska.
I need help.
Padkazhytse, kali laska, dze tut prybiral'nia?
Where is the toilet, please?

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