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100 Biggest Soviet Cities in 1989 with a Map

With the help of a map, try to name the 100 biggest cities in the Soviet Union during its 1989 census.
Source: citypopulation.de when available, and Wikipedia
Quiz by Jeremy
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Last updated: February 16, 2023
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First submittedMay 15, 2020
Times taken18,647
Average score37.0%
Rating4.95
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Republic
Population
City
Russia
8,967,232
Moscow
Russia
5,023,506
Leningrad
Ukraine
2,587,945
Kiev
Uzbekistan
2,072,459
Tashkent
Belarus
1,612,472
Minsk
Ukraine
1,609,959
Kharkiv
Russia
1,438,133
Gorky
Russia
1,436,516
Novosibirsk
Russia
1,364,621
Sverdlovsk
Russia
1,254,460
Kuybyshev
Georgia
1,243,150
Tbilisi
Armenia
1,201,539
Yerevan
Ukraine
1,177,897
Dnipropetrovsk
Azerbaijan
1,150,055
Baku
Russia
1,148,418
Omsk
Russia
1,141,777
Chelyabinsk
Kazakhstan
1,127,884
Alma Ata
Ukraine
1,115,371
Odesa
Ukraine
1,109,102
Donetsk
Russia
1,094,378
Kazan
Russia
1,090,944
Perm
Russia
1,082,052
Ufa
Russia
1,019,305
Rostov-on-Don
Russia
998,894
Volgograd
Russia
912,629
Krasnoyarsk
Latvia
910,445
Riga
Russia
904,643
Saratov
Russia
886,844
Voronezh
Ukraine
883,909
Zaporizhzhia
Ukraine
790,908
Lviv
Ukraine
713,059
Kryvyi Rih
Moldova
667,082
Chisinau
Russia
635,109
Izhevsk
Russia
633,838
Vladivostok
Russia
632,991
Yaroslavl
Russia
630,543
Tolyatti
Russia
626,135
Irkutsk
Russia
625,155
Ulyanovsk
Russia
620,516
Krasnodar
Kazakhstan
613,797
Karaganda
Kygyzstan
610,630
Frunze
Russia
601,811
Barnaul
Russia
600,623
Khabarovsk
Russia
599,947
Novokuznetsk
Tajikistan
595,820
Dushanbe
Lithuania
576,747
Vilnius
Russia
546,501
Orenburg
Russia
542,612
Penza
Russia
539,980
Tula
Russia
520,263
Kemerovo
Republic
Population
City
Ukraine
518,933
Mariupol
Russia
514,638
Ryazan
Belarus
511,706
Gomel
Russia
509,210
Astrakhan
Ukraine
502,776
Mykolaiv
Russia
501,963
Tomsk
Russia
500,309
Naberezhnye Chelny
Ukraine
496,813
Luhansk
Russia
481,042
Ivanovo
Russia
480,020
Murmansk
Estonia
478,974
Tallinn
Russia
476,869
Tyumen
Russia
452,160
Bryansk
Russia
450,941
Kalinin
Russia
449,635
Lipetsk
Russia
440,321
Magnitogorsk
Russia
440,240
Kirov
Russia
439,521
Nizhny Tagil
Ukraine
430,201
Makiivka
Russia
424,239
Kursk
Russia
419,592
Cheboksary
Lithuania
418,087
Kaunas
Russia
415,921
Arkhangelsk
Russia
401,280
Kaliningrad
Turkmenistan
401,135
Ashgabat
Russia
399,688
Grozny
Kazakhstan
392,977
Chimkent
Ukraine
374,304
Vinnytsia
Uzbekistan
367,031
Samarkand
Russia
365,754
Chita
Belarus
359,188
Mogilev
Belarus
357,446
Vitebsk
Ukraine
356,123
Sevastopol
Russia
355,517
Kurgan
Ukraine
355,379
Kherson
Russia
352,530
Ulan-Ude
Russia
349,702
Vladimir
Ukraine
343,565
Simferopol
Russia
341,483
Smolensk
Ukraine
338,106
Horlivka
Russia
336,862
Oryol
Russia
336,514
Sochi
Kazakhstan
334,402
Semipalatinsk
Kazakhstan
330,748
Pavlodar
Kazakhstan
324,478
Oskemen
Russia
318,298
Stavropol
Russia
317,475
Makhachkala
Russia
315,325
Komsomolsk-on-Amur
Ukraine
314,740
Poltava
Russia
312,128
Saransk
42 Comments
+8
Level 59
May 16, 2020
This is my dream quiz. Can you accept Salingrad for Volgograd?
+21
Level 74
May 16, 2020
Stalingrad was changed to Volgograd in 1961, quite a while before 1989. I decided to only accept names that were in use during 1989 or currently (as well as a few differences in transliteration).
+3
Level 59
Feb 5, 2023
I mean, there are a lot of people of currently know it only by that name
+9
Level 73
Feb 6, 2023
Like who, exactly?

People who don't remember the collapse of the soviet union?

+4
Level 28
Mar 7, 2023
Those are called "Americans", yes. Not me, though, y'all stay safe.
+24
Level 23
Oct 10, 2020
OUR dream quiz
+10
Level 75
May 8, 2021
Karagandy should probably be accepted
+6
Level 65
Nov 25, 2021
Krasnodar was missed
+9
Level 65
Nov 25, 2021
Samara also had a different name in 1989.
+3
Level 62
Nov 27, 2021
Nice one!
+4
Level 70
Mar 30, 2022
Zaporizhzhia is the correct one
+2
Level 70
Mar 30, 2022
anyways, great quiz!
+8
Level 84
Mar 30, 2022
I wouldn't have gotten Kherson or Mariupol without the war in Ukraine. Couldn't remember Mykolaiv, but at least I'm aware of it now.
+2
Level 71
Mar 30, 2022
makiivka is the incorrect spelling of makayevka
+6
Level 84
Apr 26, 2022
Missing the R in Kyrgyzstan.
+1
Level 59
Feb 5, 2023
Must be changed.
+1
Level 51
Apr 3, 2024
desperately
+3
Level 85
Dec 25, 2022
You should pick whether you want to use 1989 names or modern names and go with it. Some (Gorky, Sverdlovosk, etc) use 1989, and others, (Kyvyi Rih, Samara, etc.) Same thing with inconsistencies with transliterations, pick between Kharkiv and Kyiv or Kiev and Kharkov.
+3
Level 73
Feb 6, 2023
I agree that it's better to be consistent, but to be fair, there is no consistent transliteration system in the first place. Ий is sometimes written as i, y, iy, yy, yi, regardless of using Russian or Ukrainian transliterations, and that's just one example..
+1
Level 83
Feb 6, 2023
Yes but before even considering that you need to decide if you use Ukrainian or Russian names
+1
Level 59
Feb 6, 2023
congrats on the feature. well deserved.
+2
Level 73
Feb 6, 2023
Will someone explain why my brain just straight-up refuses to learn how to spell Zaporizhia? It's not even the double zh thing - I can't get that far into the name. I'm like it's zapo... zapro... zarpo... zapzhzhizhzhzhia... I give up.

Yet somehow no problem learning off Yekaterinburg, Dnipropetrovsk, Arkhangelsk, Karsnoyarsk, Yaroslavl, etc. ...

+4
Level 72
Feb 6, 2023
In many maps Zaporizhia is spelled with a double "zh". Can it be accepted as well?
+2
Level 83
Feb 6, 2023
Mykolaiv, Makiivka and maybe others don't have the Russian name accepted. Even Ukrainian spelling could be generous about y/i.
+3
Level 81
Feb 6, 2023
Only on JetPunk would the average score be 47 and a score of 78 only beat 86% of takers.
+1
Level 70
Feb 7, 2023
Shouldn't Kishinev/Kishinyov be accepted for Chisinau?
+3
Level 84
Feb 8, 2023
Krasnodar?
+3
Level 74
Feb 11, 2023
Didn't show up in citypopulation's source, same with Voronezh. I did some personal research and it's now here.
+2
Level 69
Feb 10, 2023
Damn these spellings really mess me up sometimes😭
+1
Level 80
Feb 10, 2023
Surely Krasnodar should be here.

Krasnodar - Historical Population Data

Year Population Growth Rate

1990 623,000 0.32%

1989 621,000 0.65%

1988 617,000 0.98%

+1
Level 71
Feb 15, 2023
The dot for Bishkek/Fruzne is missing
+3
Level 65
Feb 19, 2023
Some advices:

Makiivka is between Gornivka and Donetsk, not at the place of Kramatorsk. And accept Nikolayev for Mykolaiv, accept Zaporozhe to Zaporizhia, thanks.

+5
Level 88
Mar 7, 2023
Great quiz!

FYI, some of the dots don't display the city name when you hover over them after the quiz ends. Specifically, I noticed the issue with Vilnius, Samarkand, Bishkek, the northernmost dot in Kazakhstan, several dots in eastern Ukraine including Kharkiv & Donetsk, and all the dots in Belarus except Minsk.

+3
Level 74
Mar 9, 2023
Yep, looks like some of them only count the outline as being part of the SVG object (or there's something else on top of them) and some don't work at all.
+1
Level 72
Mar 7, 2023
Voroshilovgrad for Luhansk? It was the official name in 1989.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Luhansk#History

+2
Level 60
Mar 8, 2023
Makiivka is completely off of the map. Should be bordering Donetsk.
+1
Level 66
Mar 11, 2023
Could you add Russian names for Ukrainian cities, such as Vinnitsa, Gorlovka, Makeevka, Nikolayev or Zaporozhye, as valid?
+2
Level 73
Mar 12, 2023
KyRgyzstan

610,630

+3
Level 81
May 7, 2023
Some of the cities do not display their names when hovering over them, Makiivka is places in the wrong spot.

The cities affected are:

Bishkek

Pavlodar

Samarkand

Kharkiv

Donetsk

Makiivka

Gomel

Mogilev

Vitebsk

Vilnius

+1
Level 74
Nov 28, 2023
It works if you hover over the black border on the dot, at least for me. Kyrgyzstan is spelled wrong however.
+1
Level 38
Aug 3, 2023
oryol is placed in the wrong spot

its tambov, not oryol

+1
Level 57
Apr 19, 2024
Kishinev should be here