The Persians are an Iranian ethnic group who natively speak the Persian language. They share the same Persian culture, cuisine and history. In Western writings, it is common to name all ancient Iranian peoples as Persian, although some of them were not of the Persian culture, and did not speak the Persian language.
|c. 52.5 million|
|Regions with significant populations|
|Iran||49,312,834 (61–65% of total population)|
|Russia||172,303[not in the source given]|
|Persian Caucasian Tat, and Judeo-Tat), Luri|
|Primarily Shia Islam, Sunni Islam, Sufi Islam|
Irreligion, Bahá'í, Zoroastrianism
In terms of religion, most Persians today follow the Shia Islam branch of Islam while there is a sizeable population of ethnic Sunni Persians mostly living in southern Iran in Fars province. Historically, the religion of the Persians was Zoroastrianism however this religion declined after the Muslim conquest of Iran and Persians began to gradually convert to Islam and become Muslim.