This article is part of the article Czechoslovakia
Population (1991): 15,6 millions, out of which Czechs 54.1%, Slovaks 31%, Moravians 8.7%, Hungarians 3.8%, Gypsies 0.7% (de-facto more – they are among the other nations, esp. the Hungarians), Silesians 0.3%, Ruthenes, Ukrainians, Germans, Poles.
Population growth rate 2.7% in 1985, 1.7 % in 1990, decreasing tendency – more decreasing in the Czech Republic than in Slovakia. In 1989 life expectancy was 67,7 years for men and 75,3 years for women. About 23, 1 percent of the population was under the age of 15, and 19 percent was over the age of 60.
Population density (1986): approximately 121 persons per square kilometer. The most densely settled geographic region was Moravia, which had about 154 persons per square kilometer. The figure for Bohemia was about 120, and for Slovakia about 106. The major cities and their estimated populations in January 1986 were as follows: Prague (CZ) 1.2 million; Bratislava (SK) 417,103, Brno (CZ) 385,684, Ostrava (CZ) 327,791, Kosice (SK) 222,175; and Plzen (CZ) 175,244. Czechoslovakia remained essentially a society of small cities and towns, in which about 65 percent of the population were classified as urban dwellers.
Czechoslovakia's ethnic composition in 1987 offered a stark contrast to that of the First Republic (see History). No large secessionist German community troubled the society, and Carpatho-Ukraine (poor and overwhelmingly Ukrainian and Hungarian) had been ceded to the Soviet Union following World War II. Czechs and Slovaks, about two-thirds of the First Republic's populace in 1930, represented about 94 percent of the population by 1950. The aspirations of ethnic minorities had been the pivot on which the First Republic's politics turned. This was no longer the case in the 1980s. Nevertheless, ethnicity continued to be a pervasive issue and an integral part of Czechoslovak life. Although the country's ethnic composition had been simplified, the division between Czechs and Slovaks remained; each group had a distinct history and divergent aspirations. From 1950 through 1983, the Slovak share of the total population increased steadily. The Czech population as a portion of the total declined by about 4 percent, while the Slovak population increased by slightly more than that. The actual numbers were hardly such as to imperil a Czech majority; in 1983 there were still more than two Czechs for every Slovak. In the mid-1980s, the respective fertility rates were fairly close, but the Slovak fertility rate was declining more slowly.
For details on ethnic groups see also: