The Carpatho-Rusyns are a distinct Eastern Slavic people who lived for more than a thousand years in remote villages scattered along the foothills and valleys of the Carpathian Mountains of East Central Europe.
Their villages were located mostly among those of Western Slavs (Slovaks and Poles), Hungarians (Magyars), Romanians (Vlachs) and Ukrainians.
The name Rusyn identifies them as descendants, in part, of a people from the vast lands of ancient Rus' who were converted to the Eastern Christian Church in the 9th century. Rusyn can, in fact be interpreted as inhabitant of Rus'
Over the years, Rusyns have also been known by a variety of other names - Carpatho-Russians, Carpatho-Ukrainians, Rusnaks, Ruthenes, Ruthenians, Uhro-Rusyns and Podkarpats'ki Rusyny, to name a few. Rusyns typically referred to themselves as Rusnaks or Lemko for those who settled on the northern slopes of the Carpathians.
C-RS National Emblem
The Carpatho-Rusyn national emblem is a shield divided vertically into 2 fields. The left field is divided into 7 horizontal blue and gold alternating stripes, representing the seven largest rivers of the land; the Tisa, Teresva, Tereb'la, Rika, Borzhava, Latoryca and Uzh. In the right field on a silver background, which represents the rich salt mines of the area, a red bear is depicted, as king of the snowy Carpathian Mountains.
You might be Rusyn if....