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People, Language & Religion


According to the 2001 census, the vast majority of the inhabitants of the Czech Republic are Czechs (94.24%). The most numerous national minorities are: Slovaks (1.89%); Poles (0.51%); Germans (0.38%); Ukrainians (0.22%); Vietnamese (0.17%); Hungarians (0.14%); Russians (0.12%); Romani (0.11%); Bulgarians (0.04%); and Greeks (0.03%). According to some estimates, there are actually more than 200,000 Romani people in the Czech Republic.

There were 436,116 foreigners residing in the country in October 2009, according to the Czech Interior Ministry, with the largest groups being Ukrainian (132,481), Slovak (75,210), Vietnamese (61,102), Russian (29,976), Polish (19,790), German (14,156), Moldovan (10,315), Bulgarian (6,346), Mongolian (5,924), American (5,803), Chinese (5,314), British (4,461), Belarusian (4,441), Serbian (4,098), Romanian (4,021), Kazakh (3,896), Austrian (3,114), Italian (2,580), Dutch (2,553), French (2,356), Croatian (2,351), Bosnian (2,240), Armenian (2,021), Uzbek (1,969), Macedonian (1,787) and Japanese (1,581).

The Jewish population of Bohemia and Moravia, 118,000 according to the 1930 census, was virtually annihilated by the Nazis during the Holocaust. There were approximately 4,000 Jews in the Czech Republic in 2005.


Czech, which belongs to the Slavic language group, is the major and official language. In addition to the letters of the English alphabet, the Czech language has both vowels and consonants with acute accents (indicating length) and háceks: á, é, í, ó, ú, y´, c, dc, e, n, r, š, t, z, as well as u˚ (the circle also indicates length). In Czech, q, w, and x are found only in foreign words. There are numerous dialects. Many older Czechs speak German; many younger people speak Russian and English. Slovak is also spoken.


The Czech Republic, along with Estonia, has one of the least religious populations in the world. Historically, the Czech people have been characterised as "tolerant and even indifferent towards religion". According to the 2001 census, 59% of the country is agnostic, atheist or non-believer, 26.8% is Roman Catholic and 2.5% is Protestant. According to the census, the fastest growing religions during the intercensal period between 1991 and 2001 was the non-religious by 19.1%. Christianity showed negative growth, especially the Roman Catholic Church which lost more than 1 million of its members in 10 years.





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