Slavs live in Central Europe, Eastern Europe, Southeast Europe, Central Asia and North Asia. Present-day Slavic peoples are classified into West Slavs (mainly Poles, Czechs and Slovaks), East Slavs (mainly Russians, Belarusians, and Ukrainians), and South Slavs (mainly Serbs, Bulgarians, Croats, Bosniaks, Macedonians, Slovenes, and Montenegrins)
Albanians, Austrians, Hungarians, Romanians, Estonians, Lithuanians and Latvians live near the Slavic nations but are not Slavs themselves. There are more Slavs than any other ethnic group in Europe. Russians make up the most Slavs, followed by Poles and Ukrainians.
There are many small historic Slavic nations like Lusatia, Rusin, Kashubia and others. Russia is now the most powerful and populated Slavic country, but in the 10th century Serbs and Czechs were powerful, and in the 16th century Poland was the strongest nation in the area.
The Slavic languages are closely related. The largest similarities can be found within the same group (for example, Polish and Slovak, both West Slavic languages), but similarities exist even between Slavic languages from other different subgroups (such as Bulgarian and Russian).
However, the greastest similarities are between Serbian, Bosnian and Croatian, which are South Slavic languages are considered separate by the Bosnian and Croatian governments, but most linguists say they are one language, Serbo-Croatian (since Croatian, Bosnian and Serbian are more similar than those between variants of English, German. Dutch, or Hindi–Urdu, and mutual intelligibility between their speakers "exceeds that between the standard variants of English, French, German or Spanish).
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