Ian in Communism Land

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The Meaning of 'CCCP'

I wrote this article because I've been asked twice, by two different people, in the past two days, (and many more times over the years) as to what the 'CCCP' written on the Soviet dictators means.

CCCP on Stalin CCCP on Khrushchev
'CCCP' on Stalin
25 May 2000 drawing
'CCCP' on Khrushchev
6 July 2004 drawing

'CCCP' literally means 'USSR,' the former Union of Soviet Socialists Republic. In Russian, it's called the Soyuz Sovetskikh Sotsialisticheskikh Respublik, or 'SSSR.'

Russia does not use the Roman alphabet, instead using the Cyrillic alphabet. In Cyrillic, the Russian name of the 'SSSR' is 'Сою́з Сове́тских Социалисти́ческих Респу́блик.'

In Cyrillic, the Roman 'S' and 'R' are characterized as 'C' and 'P,' respectively. Thereby, 'USSR' means the same as 'CCCP.'

CCCP on Gagarin 'CCCP' on the helmet of Yuri Gagarin, the first man in space, 12 April 1961.
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Updated 18 November 2004.
Engaged 18 November 2004.