Kyiv, the Capital of Ukraine

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Kyiv, the Capital of Ukraine

Kyiv is the capital and the largest city of Ukraine, located in the central part of the country on the river Dnipro. It is an important industrial, scientific, educational and cultural centre of Eastern Europe. It is home of many high-tech industries, higher educational institutions and world-famous historical landmarks.

The name Kyiv is said to derive from the name of Kyi, one of four legendary founders of the city (brothers Kyi, Shchek, Khoryv, and sister Lybid). During its history Kyiv, one of the oldest cities in Eastern Europe, passed through several stages of great prominence and relative obscurity.

Geographically, Kyiv belongs to the Polissya ecological zone. However, the unique landscape distinguishes it from the surrounding region. Kyiv has a humid continental climate. The Dnipro naturally divides Kyiv into the Right Bank and the Left Bank. Historically located on the western right bank of the river, the city expanded into the left bank only in the 20th century. Most of the Kyiv’s attractions as well as the majority of business and governmental institutions are located at the right bank. The eastern Left Bank is predominantly residential. There are large industrial and green areas in both the Right Bank and the Left Bank. According to the All-Ukrainian Census, the population of Kyiv in 2001 was 2,611,300.

Kyiv is known as a green city with two botanical gardens and numerous large and small parks. The horse-chestnut tree has become the symbol of the city. The center of Kyiv (Independence Square and Hreschatyk Street) becomes a large outdoor party place at night during summer months, with thousands of people having a good time in nearby restaurants, clubs and outdoor cafes. The central streets are closed for auto traffic on weekends and holidays. Andriyivskyi Descent is one of the best known historic streets and a major tourist attraction in Kyiv.

Kyiv was the historical centre of the East Slavic civilization and a major cradle for the Rus Christianization. Its sacred sites, which include the Kyiv Pechersk Lavra and the Saint Sophia Cathedral are probably the most famous, attracted pilgrims for centuries and now recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, remain the primary religious centers as well as the major tourist attraction. The above mentioned sites are also part of the Seven Wonders of Ukraine’s collection.

Kyiv theatres include the Kyiv Opera House, Ivan Franko National Academic Drama Theatre, Lesya Ukrainka National Academic Theatre of Russian Drama, Kyiv Puppet Theatre, October Palace and National Philharmonic of Ukraine and others.

The most important of the city’s 40 museums are the Kyiv State Historical Museum, Museum of the Great Patriotic War, National Art Museum, Museum of Western and Oriental Art, Pinchuk Art Center and National Museum of Russian art.

Kyiv hosts many universities, the major ones being the Kyiv National Taras Shevchenko University, the National Technical University “Kyiv Polytechnic Institute”, and the Kyiv-Mohyla Academy. Scientific research is conducted in many of the institutes of the higher education and, additionally, in many research institutes affiliated with the Ukrainian Academy of Sciences. There are many libraries in the city with the Vernadskyi library affiliated with the Academy of Sciences being the largest and the most important one.

Public transportation in Kyiv includes the metro, busses, trolleybuses, trams and funicular. Suburban transportation is provided by buses and short-range trains. The city represents the focal point of the Ukrainian national roads system and is linked by high-quality road to many of the principle cities of Ukraine. The city has a developed railroad infrastructure including a long-distance passenger stations, 6 cargo stations. Air passengers arrive to Kyiv through one of two airports: the Boryspil Airport, which is served by international airlines, and the smaller Zhulyany Airport, serving mostly domestic flights.


1. Where is Kyiv situated?

2. What is the name of Kyiv derived from?

3. Kyiv is one of the oldest cities of Eastern Europe, isn’t it?

4. Has Kyiv a humid continental or dry tropical climate?

5. When did Kyiv expend into the left bank of the Dnipro?

6. What is the population of Kyiv, according to the All-Ukrainian Census?

7. What tree has become the symbol of Kyiv?

8. What central streets are famous for?

9. What Kyiv sacred sites are recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site?

10. What Kyiv theatres do you know?

11. What are the most famous Kyiv museums?

12. The Kyiv-Mohyla Academy is one of Kyiv major higher educational institutions, isn’t it?

13. What kinds of public transportation are there in Kyiv?

14. Suburban transportation is provided by funicular, isn’t it?


Vocabulary and Speech Exercises


I. Give English equivalents of the following words and word-combinations.

Промисловий, науковий, освітній і культурний центр східної Європи; історичні віхи, відомі у всьому світі; процвітання і забуття; унікальний ландшафт; визначні місця Києва; урядові заклади; переважно житловий; каштан; ближній ресторан; Андріївський спуск; колиска християнства на Русі; святі місця; туристична принада; сім чудес України; національна філармонія; ляльковий театр; музей західного і східного мистецтва; науково-дослідницькі інститути; приміське сполучення; пасажирські станції дальнього слідування; міжнародні авіалінії.


II. Arrange the following words in synonymic pairs. Use them in the sentences of your own.

· Modern, focal, underground, milestone, housing, main, remarkable, scenery, emblem, well-known, surrounding, funicular, load.

· Major, landmark, symbol, central, high-tech, prominent, cargo, famous, metro, cable way, neighbouring, residential, landscape.

III. Fill in the blanks with the appropriate words given below.

Kiev has many … football clubs, including Dynamo Kyiv, Arsenal Kyiv and FC Obolon Kyiv which play in the … . Of these three, … has had the most success over the course of its history.

Prominent … in the city include: the Sokil Kyiv ice hockey club and BC Kyiv basketball club. Both of these … play in the highest Ukrainian leagues for their respective. They play their home games at the … .

During the 1980 … Kyiv held the preliminary matches and the … of the football tournament at its Olympic Stadium, which was reconstructed specially for the event. From the 1st of December 2008 the stadium underwent a … in order to satisfy standards put in place by … for hosting the Euro 2012 football tournament. The … took place in the presence of president Viktor Yanukovych on the 8th of October 2011, with the first major event being Shakira concert which was specially planned to coincide with the stadium’s re-opening during … .Other notable … in Kiev include the Lobanovskyi Dynamo Stadium, the Palace of Sports.

(Euro 2012; teams; Ukrainian Premier League; Summer Olympics; UEFA; professional and amateur; sport stadiums; Dynamo Kyiv; full-scale reconstruction; non-football sport clubs; opening ceremony; quarter-finals; Kyiv Palace of Sport).


IV. Insert a correct preposition.

1. Kyiv is located (at, in, on) both sides (from, of, through) the Dnipro river.

2. The highest ever temperature recorded (in, at, on) the city was 39.4°C (in, on, at) July, 31 1936.

3. There are numerous songs, paintings, photos dedicated (towards, to, for) the city.

4. It is said that one can walk (in, of, from) one end (of, in, from) Kyiv (to, towards, at) the other (at, on, in) the summertime without leaving the shade (from. of, in) its many trees.

5. Hidropark is accessible (on, at, by) metro or car.

6. The 100-year-old Kyiv Zoo is located (in, on, at) 40 hectares and the zoo has 2,600 animals (from, of, into) 328 species.

7. Kyiv is noted (from, by, for) its research in medicine and computer science.

Grammar Exercises

The teacher wants Nick (him) to tell about Kyiv Fortress. ↓ The Objective Infinitive Complex The tourists heard the guide tell interesting facts about the history of Kyiv foundation. He wanted me to visit the National Art Museum of Ukraine. We consider Kyi to be the founder of Kyiv. My friend advised some famous Kyiv monuments to be seen. The teacher let us walk about Podil.


I. Translate the following sentences. Pay attention to theObjective Infinitive Complex.

1. We observed a group of tourists take pictures in the background of St Michael’s Golden-Domed Cathedral.

2. I would like you to feast your eyes with the baroque-style St Andrew’s Church.

3. The folklorists consider Pyrohiv village to be the largest outdoor museum of folk architecture and life in Ukraine.

4. We wanted the professor to deliver a lecture on the Kyiv fortress.

5. Historians believe the Golden Gate to have been constructed by Yaroslav the Wise, Prince of Kyiv.

6. Citizens of Ukraine know Kyiv to be the largest city of our country in terms of both population and area

7. We asked the musician to perform the song “How not to Love you, Kyiv of mine?”.

8. Ukrainian people found the 50th annual Eurovision Song Contest, held in Kyiv, to have become one of the major events of the cultural life.

9. Our teacher advised the National Botanical Garden to be seen.

10. His deep knowledge let him enter the Kyiv-Mohyla Academy, one of the most prestigious higher educational establishments in Ukraine.

II. Translate into English.

1. Студенти уважно слухали, як лектор розповідав про стародавній Київ, центр культури східних слов’ян.

2. Я вважаю, що Національний академічний театр ім. Франка є найкращим театром Києва.

3. Батьки дозволили мені піти з друзями в Гідропарк.

4. Товариш дуже хотів, щоб ми відвідали Києво-Печерську Лавру.

5. Батько порадив сину побувати на грі хокейного клубу Сокіл у палаці спорту.

6. Глядачі бачили, як прекрасно пройшла церемонія відкриття стадіону Олімпійський.

7. Ми порадили туристам доїхати до Хрещатика на метро.

8. Викладач порекомендував мені шукати матеріали стосовно мого наукового дослідження у бібліотеці ім. Вернадського.

Lesson 5

Ivano-Frankivsk Region


Text: Ivano-Frankivsk

Grammar: The Objective Infinitive Complex

Active Vocabulary


plain to join mention anniversary to rename fortress partition property foothill dawn to overrun liberation baroque steeple to yield to wander bulwark [pleIn] [GOIn] ['menS(q)n] ["xnI'vE:s(q)rI] ["rJ'neIm] ['fLtrqs] [pR'tIS(q)n] ['prPpqtI] ['fVthIl] [dLn] ["qVvq'rAn] ["lIb(q)'reIS(q)n] [bq'rPk] ['stJpl] [jJld] ['wPndq] ['bVlwqk] рівнина з’єднуватися згадка річниця перейменувати фортеця поділ, розділення власність передгір’я світанок захопити звільнення стиль бароко шпиль поступатися блукати вал, бастіон


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