Map of the percentage of population able to speak Russian in the EU by country

by Jakub Marian

Tip: See my list of the Most Common Mistakes in English. It will teach you how to avoid mis­takes with com­mas, pre­pos­i­tions, ir­reg­u­lar verbs, and much more (PDF Version).

Russian used to be the first foreign language most inhabitants of the former Eastern Bloc learned. Understandably, the number of Russian speakers has been declining since the fall of the iron curtain, as Russian ceased to be an obligatory subject in most of those countries. Nevertheless, it is still one of the most popular foreign languages spoken in the region.

In fact, there are still more speakers of Russian than English in Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania, and even in the rest of the former Eastern Bloc, Russian is not lagging much behind English.

The map is based on the “Special Eurobarometer 386” and on the number of native Russian speakers in the respective countries (the data is from 2012, so Croatia is not included).

If you want to share the map, please share a link to this webpage instead of sharing just the picture. The underlying blank map was made by Tindo and licensed from


By the way, I have written several educational ebooks. If you get a copy, you can learn new things and support this website at the same time—why don’t you check them out?

Enter the discussion 0