AskDefine | Define Mordvinian

Dictionary Definition

Mordvinian

Noun

1 a member of the agricultural people living in the central Volga provinces of European Russia [syn: Mordva, Mordvin]
2 the Finnic language spoken by the Mordvin people [syn: Mordva, Mordvin]

Extensive Definition

The Volgaic Finns are people who speak languages of the Finno-Volgaic branch of the Finno-Ugric language family.
Less than one third of Volgaic Finns live in the autonomous republic of Mordovia, Russian Federation, in the basin of the Volga River. The rest are scattered over the Russian oblasts of Samara, Penza, Orenburg and Nizhni Novgorod, as well as Tatarstan, Kazakhstan, Central Asia, Siberia, Far East, Armenia, Australia and USA.
There are three separate nations of Volga Finns: Erzya ( Ersa ), who speak Erzya; Mari, who speak Mari; and Moksha, who speak Moksha.
The Qaratay Mokshan ethnic group live in Kama Tamağı District of Tatarstan, and have shifted to speaking Tatar, albeit with a large proportion of Mordvin vocabulary (substratum). Erzya ethnic group (Teryukhan), ( Terjuhan ) living in the Nizhny Novgorod Oblast of Russia have switched to Russian in the 19th century. The Teryukhans recognize the term Mordva as pertaining to themselves, whereas the Qaratay call themselves Muksha.
There is also western group of the Erzyans Shoksha (or Shoksho). For some reason, this name is rarely mentioned in literature. The Shoksha live isolated from the bulk of the Erzyans, and their dialect has been influenced by the Mokshan dialects.
Since 1950s the number of Erzyas and Mokshas in Mordovia, and their knowledge of their mother tongues has decreased. In 2003 there were around 845,000 Mordvins.
The Mokshan and Erzyan national epic is called Mastorava, which stands for "Mother Earth". It was compiled of separate Mokshan and Erzyan folklore heritage by A. M. Sharonov and first published in 1994.

List of notable Mokshas and Erzyas

List of Erzya papers

  • Chilisema (for children)
  • Erzyan pravda (newspaper)
  • Moksha (literature, culture)
  • Mokshen pravda (newspaper)
  • Syatko (literature, culture)
  • Yakster Tyashtenya (for children)

List of Moksha papers

  • Moksha (literature, culture)
  • Mokshen pravda (newspaper)
  • Yakster Tyashtenya (for children)

External links

General Mordovia news Mordvin toponymy (in Mordovia and throughout the Middle Volga region):
Mordvinian in German: Wolga-Finnen
Mordvinian in Russian: Волжские финны
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