Kharkiv, Ukraine

Kharkiv (Харків, also known as Kharkov (Харьков) from Russian), is the second-largest city in Ukraine. Population: 1,439,036 (2017 est.)

The city was founded in 1654 and after a humble beginning as a small fortress grew to be a major center of Ukrainian industry, trade, and culture in the Russian Empire.

Kharkiv was the first capital of the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic, from December 1919 to January 1934, after which the capital relocated to Kiev.

Presently, Kharkiv is a major cultural, scientific, educational, transport and industrial center of Ukraine, with 6 museums, 7 theatres, and 80 libraries.

Some sources indicate that the city may have been named after the Hunnic name for ‘swan’: kharka. Other sources offer that the city was named after its near-legendary founder, Kharko (CharitonUkrainianХаритон,or ZechariahUkrainianЗахарій).

Among other names, there are Charkow, Charkov, Zakharpolis.