Back in Soviet times the Ukrainian language was neglected and underestimated. It lost its official status since Ukraine was part of the great Soviet State and was subject to its policy and regulations. Thus, it was not allowed to have its own official language. In 1993, only 31 million Ukrainian residents (slightly over 59%) spoke Ukrainian, but after the country gained its independence, the number of people willing to learn and speak it at home has started to increase. And today about 67.5% of Ukrainian citizens refer to the language as to their mother tongue despite the previously pressing influence of the Soviet Union.
A great number of linguists consider Ukrainian to be one of the languages recognized from the earliest times, a few even believe it’s the parent and the oldest one among other Slavic languages. And although it is hard to trace its history down to the pre-written period, it is obvious that the Ukrainian language existed early enough to leave written symbols on items dated back to the beginning of the Bronze Age. Most of those writings looked like Greek, but there is no doubt that they belonged to the local language spoken in the ancient settlements of northern Black Sea area.
You are probably wondering what about the situation with Ukrainian is today. Luckily, the government realized the importance of preserving the beautiful songlike Ukrainian language and giving it enough room to develop. And today the great majority of offices and administrative bodies use it for communication as well as correspondence. It is spoken during sessions in Rada, by the President, by the Prime Minister and a considerable part of deputies and officials. Moreover, such extensive use of the language by bureaucracy leads to the widening of Ukrainian language studies both in schools and higher educational establishments. Still more books, textbooks and manuals are published in the national language and indeed more people have started to write books in Ukrainian.
Due to mass media, the Ukrainian language has outgrown the country’s borders and is gaining a stable, consolidated and more significant position among other important languages, broadening horizons and introducing our unique Ukrainian culture to other nations. There is no doubt that sooner or later the whole of the population of the country will speak Ukrainian as a mother tongue or, at least, that there will be many bilinguals and polyglots speaking not only the national language, but also Russian and, for example, English, French or German as well.