Ever wondered, if you didn’t visit Egypt yet, who are the current residents of the land of the pharaohs, Egypt? Who are the Egyptians living currently in Egypt? Okay, don’t wonder any more cause we are going to answer this question.
Egyptians are an ethnic group of people living in Egypt; an ethnic group running since the time of the Pharaohs. Simply put, the people and citizens living in Egypt today, the Egyptians, are the descendants of a very old and long-running culture since the days of the Pharaohs. Although, this said, they are of a very mixed and diverse nature due to the large number of exposures the Egyptians have faced … in addition, to the multiple mixture of other cultures and peoples who lived in Egypt across time and during multiple conquests of Egypt. In the really old days, Egyptians were living in the Pharaonic era, then they were occupied by the Greeks, then again by the Romans, then yet again by the Arabs. In addition, in the modern history of Egyptians, Egypt was also mixed with the Turks, Armenians, Syrians (Levantine people), the French, and the British during the colonial eras of those nations.
Besides history, and to make things clear … Egypt was always structured as Upper Egypt and Lower Egypt (sorry, another small historic tip: Upper and Lower Egypt, i.e. the Egyptian race, were unified thousands of years ago by a great Pharaoh called Narmer or “Mina” in Egyptian). In addition, there are Egyptian people living in the western deserts and the Eastern deserts of Sinai. So, what makes up the Egyptians today? Here is a list:
- Upper Egypt (Southern people): Commonly called “Saidi” people in the Egyptian language. They are the residents of the old Upper Egypt of the Pharaonic empire. This region has its own traditions, considerably different from the North and the Capital, Cairo. Nowadays, and as cities in this region are becoming urbanized, the cultural gap is closening to a great extent. People living in the extreme south, are a special type of African-Egyptian people called Nubians … they have a very special, friendly and truly Egyptian culture since the times of the Pharaonic eras. Many Egyptians from this region have a darker skin complexion. Big cities here include Luxor, Aswan , Assiut, and Hurghada (on the Red Sea).
- Lower Egypt (Northern people): those are the Egyptians of Cairo (although Cairo, as a capital, is mixed with all Egyptians from all regions), the delta, Alexandria and Mediterranean cities. They have more of a Mediterranean culture and physical characteristics. This region had the biggest effect in the modern times from Turkish, Greek, Italian, and French cultures. Many Egyptians of this region have a lighter (or white) skin complexion. Big cities here include Cairo, Alexandria, Mansoura, and Port Said.
- Western desert: those Egyptians have a large similarity to the berber culture of the North West of Africa. Includes villages and towns like Siwa.
- Sinai deserts and mountains (East): those Egyptians are mainly consisting of Egyptians with a large effect by the Arabian culture (from the Arabian peninsula). Includes big cities like Sharm El-Sheikh (in South of Sinai, this city is very international and cosmopolitan, it is commonly known as the city of peace and tourism) and El-Arish (in North of Sinai, more tribal Egyptians live here).
As can be seen by the description above, Egyptians are very diverse people with a lot of diverse cultures … yet, all Egyptians from all regions share the same language (Modern Egyptian, which is a special blend of Arabic with the old Coptic language, Greek, Turkish, Italian and French). All Egyptians speak the colloquial Egyptian language, however, different regions can have slight/medium dialect differences, but still the language and dialects are totally mutually understandable by all Egyptians from the different regions. The most popular dialect (which is commonly used in the movies, music and television) is the Cairene dialect of the Egyptian language.
All Egyptians also share the same (more or less) sense of humour, cuisine, interests, emotions, and religions (Abrahamic religions: Islam, Christianity, and Judaism). Different regions have different physical traits, different levels of education and economical development, and some small cultural differences though, yet all Egyptians seem to share the same running-blood of the Pharaohs with all its similarly positive values! 🙂
It must be said here that Egyptians, internally in Egypt, are totally mixed. It is very common today to find families interlinked between the different Egyptian regions listed above. Therefore, the Egyptian race is actually very tightly-coupled and interlinked.
Most Egyptians have those common characteristics: they are funny, kind, have a good sense of humour, they are very warm-hearted and open to foreigners, they are very loving, and very friendly / caring. Most Egyptians enjoy seeing justice, kind treatment of others, and deny all sorts of evil. This makes them one of the most friendly people on the planet, we can claim!! 😀
What do the Egyptians of today look like? We give you an idea using the photo-mashup below (collected online, all rights reserved to their respective owners) having Egyptian sports teams, international actors, and youth. Note, however, most of those photos show Egyptians from the biggest four cities having 25% of the Egyptian population, all part of Lower Egypt, apart of Giza which can be considered part of Upper Egypt: Greater-Cairo, Alexandria, Giza and Port Said! 😀