Friday, 13 July 2012

Lebanese people

The Lebanese people (Arabic: الشعب اللبناني‎ / ALA-LC: al-sha‘ab al-lubnānī, Lebanese Arabic pronunciation: are a nation and ethnic group of Levantine people originating in what is today the country of Lebanon, including those who had inhabited Mount Lebanon prior to the creation of the modern Lebanese state.

The cultural and linguistic heritage of the Lebanese people is a rich blend of both indigenous elements and the foreign cultures that have come to rule the land and its people over the course of thousands of years.
Lebanon does not collect official census data on ethnic background and therefore is difficult to have an exact demographic analysis of Lebanese society, with the last census conducted by the French Mandate government in 1932. The largest concentration or people of Lebanese ancestry is in Brazil having an estimated population of 6 to 7 million. As with their predecessors, the Lebanese have always travelled the world, many of them settling permanently, most notably in the last two centuries.

Religiously, descendants of Lebanese Christians comprise the overwhelming majority of Lebanese people worldwide, according to some estimates, outnumbering Lebanese Muslims (both Sunni and Shi'a) at a 3:1 ratio, and concentrated principally in the diaspora.

Reduced in numbers and estimated to have lost their status as a majority in Lebanon itself, largely as a result of their emigration, Christians still remain one of the principal religious groups in the country.