Ethnic Groups of Nepal
Anthropologists divide the people of Nepal into about 50 'ethnic groups'.
This is a convenient term to encompass the various categories of tribe, clan,
caste and race. The two major groups in Nepalese society are Tibeto-Burman, or
Mongoloids from the north, and Indo-Aryans from the south. Many customs are
inherited from both sides and have been developed by the influences of the land,
climate and available resources. Each ethnic group has its own culture and
traditions. Everyone is proud of their embarrassment when asking someone about
their ethnicity (jaat or thar in Nepali). Often it's not even necessary to ask,
as many people use the name of their ethnic group, caste or clan as a surname.