- A former empire of eastern Europe and northern Asia. From a collection of mostly Slavic principalities dominated by the Tatars, Russia emerged as a unified state centered around Moscow between the 14th and 16th centuries. The empire spread quickly to the east and south, becoming a world power by the 18th century. In the 19th century, Russia experienced a flowering of the arts and literature and some liberal social reforms, but popular discontent with the conservative Tsarist government led to revolutions in 1905 and 1917, the collapse of the empire, and the formation of the USSR in 1922.
- Officially Russian Federation A country of eastern Europe and northern Asia stretching from the Baltic Sea to the Pacific Ocean. Formerly the Russian Soviet Federated Socialist Republic, the largest of the constituent republics of the USSR, it became an independent state in 1991 with Boris Yeltsin as the country's first directly elected president. In that same year, with Belarus and Ukraine, Russia formed the Commonwealth of Independent States, which was eventually joined by 12 of the 15 former Soviet republics. In March 1992 Russia signed a treaty with most of the semiautonomous ethnic territories within its borders, establishing the Russian Federation. Moscow is the capital.
- See Union of Soviet Socialist Republics.
See also communism.Decembrist one of those who conspired to overthrow Russian Czar Nicholas I in December, 1825. Also Dekebrist. Kremlinology study of the policies, doctrines, programs, etc., of the government of the Soviet Union. —Kremlinologist, n. Russianism something characteristic of or influenced by Russia, its people, customs, language, etc. Russomania an obsession with Russia and things Russian. Russophilism great fondness for or interest in Russia, its people, customs, language, art, etc. — Russophile, n., adj. Russophobism Russophobia. Slavicist one who specializes in the study of Slavic languages, literatures, or other aspects of Slavic culture. Also Slavist. Slavophilism enthusiasm for or admiration of things Slavic, as Slavic literature, language, culture, customs, etc. —Slavophil, Slavophile, n., adj. Slavophobia fear or hatred of things Slavic, especially of real or imagined Soviet political influence. —Slavophobe, n. —Slavophobic, adj. sovietism, sovietism 1. the soviet system of government and the principles and practices of such a government. 2. a policy, action, etc., typical of the Soviet Union. —Sovietist, sovietist, n., adj. Sovietology study of the Soviet Union, especially its government, policies, etc. —Sovietologist, n.