Standard Russian

The standard well-known form of Russian is generally called the Modern Russian Literary Language (Современный русский литературный язык). It arose in the beginning of the 18th century with the modernization reforms of the Russian state by Peter the Great. It developed from the Moscow (Middle or Central Russian) dialect substratum under some influence of the Russian chancellery language of the previous centuries. It was Lomonosov who first compiled a normalizing grammar book in 1755. In 1783 the first explanatory dictionary of Russian by Russian Academy of Science appeared. During the end of the 18th and 19th centuries Russian went through the stage (known as “Golden Age”) of stabilization and standardization of its grammar, vocabulary and pronunciation, and of the flourishing its world-famous literature, and became the nationwide literary language. Also until the 20th century its spoken form was the language only of the upper noble classes and urban population, Russian peasants from the countryside continued speaking in their own dialects. By the middle of the 20th century Standard Russian finally forced out its dialects with the compulsory education system, established by the Soviet government, and mass-media (radio and TV). Though some dialectical features (such as fricative /ɣ/) are still observed in colloquial speech.

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