Union of Soviet Socialist Republics Commonly called Soviet Union or Russia
A former country of northern Eurasia with coastlines on the Baltic and Black Seas and the Arctic and Pacific Oceans. Established by the union (1922) of the Russian SFSR (proclaimed after the Russian Revolution of 1917) and various other soviet republics in the former Russian Empire, the USSR quickly became a totalitarian state under Communist rule. After the defeat of Nazi Germany in World War II, the competing geopolitical ambitions of the USSR and its former Western allies led to the Cold War. In 1991, most of the constituent republics declared their independence, and the USSR was officially dissolved. Moscow was the capital.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2019 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.