Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic

The Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic (Ukrainian SSR, UkrSSR or UkSSR; Ukrainian: Украї́нська Радя́нська Соціалісти́чна Респу́бліка, romanized: Ukrayins'ka Radians'ka Sotsialistychna Respublika, УРСР; Russian: Украи́нская Сове́тская Социалисти́ческая Респу́блика, УССР), also known as Soviet Ukraine, was one of the constituent republics of the Soviet Union from the Union's inception in 1922 until its breakup in 1991.[9] In the anthem of the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic, the republic was referred to simply as Ukraine. The republic was governed by the Communist Party of the Soviet Union through its republican branch, the Communist Party of Ukraine, as a union republic of the Soviet Union, which existed as a highly centralized one-party state.

Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic
  • Українська Радянська Соціалістична Республіка (Ukrainian)
  • Ukrayins'ka Radians'ka Sotsialistychna Respublika
  • Украинская Советская Социалистическая Республика (Russian)
  • Ukrainskaya Sovetskaya Sotsialisticheskaya Respublika
1941–1944: German and Romanian occupation
Motto: Пролетарі всіх країн, єднайтеся! (Ukrainian)
"Proletari vsikh krayin, yednaitesia!" (transliteration)
"Workers of the world, unite!"
Anthem: Інтернаціонал  (Ukrainian)
Internatsional  (transliteration)
Державний гімн Української Радянської Соціалістичної Республіки  (Ukrainian)
Derzhavnyy himn Ukrayins'koyi Radyans'koyi
Sotsialistychnoyi Respubliky
Location of the Ukrainian SSR (red) within the Soviet Union (red and light yellow) between 1954 and 1991
StatusIndependent Socialist Republic (1919–1922)
Union Republic (1922–1990)
(with priority of Ukrainian legislation; 1990–1991)
CapitalKharkov (1919–1934)[1]
50°0′16″N 36°13′53″E
Kiev (1934–1991)[2]
50°27′00″N 30°31′24″E
Largest cityKiev
50°27′00″N 30°31′24″E
Official languagesRussian[3][4]
(Ukrainian declared as official in 1990)a[5]
Recognised languagesBelarusian, Crimean Tatar, Hungarian, Moldovan/Romanian, Polish
State atheism (de facto)
Russian Orthodox Church
Greek Catholic Church
Sunni Islam
Demonym(s)Ukrainian, Soviet
Unitary Marxist–Leninist one-party Soviet socialist republic
Unitary parliamentary republic
First Secretary 
 1918–1919 (first)
Emanuel Kviring
 1990 (last)[6]
Stanislav Hurenko
Head of state 
Grigory Petrovsky
 1990–1991 (last)
Leonid Kravchuk
Head of government 
 1918–1919 (first)
Georgy Pyatakov
 1988–1991 (last)
Vitold Fokin
LegislatureCongress of Soviets (1919–1938)[7]
Supreme Soviet (1938–1991)[8]
 Declaration of the Ukrainian Soviet republic
10 March 1919
30 December 1922
15 November 1939
2 August 1940
 Admitted to the United Nations
24 October 1945
16 July 1990
 Declaration of independence, Ukrainian SSR renamed to Ukraine
24 August 1991
1 December 1991
10 December 1991
 Dissolution of the Soviet Union (Ukraine's independence formally recognized)
26 December 1991
28 June 1996
1989 census603,700 km2 (233,100 sq mi)
HDI (1990)0.725
CurrencySoviet ruble (руб) (karbovanets) (SUR)
Calling code7 03/04/05/06
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Ukrainian People's Republic
Free Territory
Second Polish Republic
Kingdom of Romania
Reichskommissariat Ukraine
General Government
Polish People's Republic
Kingdom of Hungary
Crimean Oblast
Kholodny Yar Republic
Kingdom of Romania
Moldavian SSR
Reichskommissariat Ukraine
General Government
Polish People's Republic
Today part ofUkraine (de jure)
Russia (de facto some parts internationally unrecognized)
  1. Law of Ukraine "About languages of the Ukrainian SSR"

The Ukrainian SSR was established by the Bolsheviks following the defeat of the Ukrainian People's Republic in the Soviet–Ukrainian War during the Russian Civil War. As a Soviet proto-state, the Ukrainian SSR became a founding member of the United Nations[10] along with the Byelorussian SSR, even though they were legally represented by the All-Union state in its affairs with countries outside of the Soviet Union. Upon the Soviet Union's dissolution and perestroika, the Ukrainian SSR was transformed into the independent state of Ukraine.[11]

Throughout its 72-year history, the republic's borders changed many times, with a significant portion of what is now Western Ukraine being annexed by Soviet forces in 1939 from the Republic of Poland, and the addition of Carpathian Ruthenia from Hungary in 1945. From its establishment, the eastern city of Kharkov served as the republic's capital. However, the seat of government was subsequently moved in 1934 to the city of Kiev, Ukraine's historic capital. Kiev remained the capital for the rest of the Ukrainian SSR's existence and remained the capital of independent Ukraine after the breakup of the Soviet Union.

Geographically, the Ukrainian SSR was situated in Eastern Europe to the north of the Black Sea, bordered by the Soviet republics of Moldavia, Byelorussia, and Russia. The Ukrainian SSR's border with Czechoslovakia formed the Soviet Union's westernmost border point. According to the 1989 Soviet Census, the republic had a population of 51,706,746 inhabitants, which fell sharply after the breakup of the Soviet Union.