Moscow (pronounced /ˈmɑskaʊ/ or /ˈmɒskəʊ/ in English, Russian: Москва (help·info), tr. Moskva, IPA [mɐˈskva]; see also other names) is the capital and the largest city of Russia. It is also the largest metropolitan area in Europe, and ranks among the largest urban areas in the world. Moscow is a major political, economic, cultural, religious, financial, educational, and transportation centre of Russia and the world, a global city. It is also the seventh largest city proper in the world, a megacity. The population of Moscow (as of 1 June 2009) is 10,524,400.
It is located on the Moskva River in the Central Federal District, in the European part of Russia. Moscow sits on the junction of three geological platforms. Historically, it was the capital of the former Soviet Union, Tsardom of Russia and the Grand Duchy of Moscow. It is the site of the Moscow Kremlin, one of the World Heritage Sites in the city, which serves as the residence of the President of Russia. The Russian parliament (the State Duma and the Federation Council) and the Government of Russia also sit in Moscow.
Moscow is a major economic centre and is home to one of the largest numbers of billionaires in the world; in 2008 Moscow was named the world's most expensive city for foreign employees for the third year in a row. However, in 2009, Moscow moved to third after Tokyo and Osaka came in first and second, respectively.
It is home to many scientific and educational institutions, as well as numerous sport facilities. It possesses a complex transport system, that includes 3 international airports, 9 railroad terminals, and the world's second busiest (after Tokyo) metro system which is famous for its architecture and artwork. Its metro is the busiest single-operator subway in the world.
Over time, the city has earned a variety of nicknames, most referring to its pre-eminent status in the nation: The Third Rome (Третий Рим), Whitestone (Белокаменная), The First Throne (Первопрестольная), The Forty Forties (Сорок Сороков.)
A person from Moscow is called a Muscovite in English, Moskvich in Russian.
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