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Types of inhabited localities in Russia: Map


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The classification system of the types of inhabited localities in Russia, the former Soviet Unionmarker, and some other post-Soviet states has certain peculiarities compared to the classification systems in other countries.

Modern classification in Russia

During the Sovietmarker times, each of the republics of the Soviet Union, including the Russian SFSR, had its own legislative documents dealing with classification of inhabited localities. After the dissolution of the Soviet Union, the task of developing and maintaining such classification in Russia was delegated to the federal subjects. While currently there are certain peculiarities to classifications used in many federal subjects, they are all still largely based on the system used in the RSFSR. In all federal subjects, the inhabited localities are classified into two major categories: urban and rural. Further divisions of these categories vary slightly from one federal subject to another, but they all follow common trends described below.

Urban localities

  • Cities and towns ( , gorod; pl. , goroda). Cities and towns are classified by their level of jurisdiction (district/federal subject/federal). While the Russian language has no separate words for "town" and "city" (" " is used for both), in translation, the word "city" is traditionally applied to the urban localities with a population of at least 100,000.

  • Urban-type settlements ( , posyolok gorodskogo tipa; pl. ) is a type of smaller urban locality. This type of urban locality was first introduced in the Soviet Union in 1924, with the following subcategories:
    • Urban-type settlement proper—mostly urban population of 3,000–12,000.
      • Work settlement ( , rabochy posyolok)—mostly urban population occupied in industrial manufacture.
      • Suburban (dacha) settlement ( , dachny posyolok)—typically, a suburban settlement with summer dachas.
      • Resort settlement ( , kurortny posyolok)—mostly urban population occupied in beach services.
In 1957, the procedures for categorizing urban-type settlements were further refined.

Rural localities

Multiple types of rural localities exist, some common through the whole territory of Russia, some specific to certain federal subjects. The most common types include:
  • Villages ( , derevnya; pl. , derevni)
  • Selo ( , selo; pl. , syola)
  • (Rural-type) settlements ( , posyolok (selskogo tipa); pl. ). The "rural-type" ( ) designation is added to the settlements the population of which is mostly occupied in agriculture, while posyolok ( ) proper indicates a mix of population working in agriculture and industry.
  • Stanitsas ( , stanitsa; pl. , stanitsy)—historically, a Cossack rural locality. The name is still currently in use, with the basic meaning of "village".
  • Slobodas ( , sloboda; pl. , slobody)—historically, a settlement freed from taxes and levies for various reasons. The name is still currently in use with the basic meaning of "village".
  • Khutors ( , khutor; pl. , khutora)—translated as "hamlet", "farmstead", or "village".
  • Pochinoks , pochinok; pl. , pochinki)—a newly formed rural locality of one or several families. Pochinoks are established as new settlements and usually grow into larger villages as they develop.
  • In some federal subjects, ethnic (Turkic or Pashto) terminology is used in the Russian language. Such locality types include (aul), (aal), and (kishlak).

Historical terms

  • Krepost ( , a fort), a fortified settlement. A Kremlin, Russian citadel, is a major krepost usually including a castle and surrounded by posad. Ostrog, on the other hand, was a more primitive kind of krepost which could be put up quickly within rough walls of debarked pointed timber.
  • Posad ( ), a medieval suburban settlement.
  • Mestechko ( , from ; ), a small town in Western Krai annexed during the Partitions of Poland; typically with Jewish majority.

See also


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