Mongolian People

Photo by Markus Spring

Where they live:
Mongolia (2,700,000) , China (5,800,000) , and Russia (1,000,00)
Total population:
Language Branch:
Altaic, Mongolic, Central Mongolian, Khalkha (Halh) Mongolian
Mostly Tibetan Buddhism and Shamanism with small numbers of Christian and Muslims
Related to:
Buryat, Hazara, Duars, Tuvans, Kalmyks


The Mongolian people live mostly in Mongolia and Inner Mongolia which is now in China. They speak an Mongolic language and are closely related to to the Mongolic Buryats, the Turkic Tuvans, and the "Indo-Altaic" Hazara (Hazara speak an Indo European language with Mongolian and Turkic words. Their DNA is Mongolic and Persian which is a Indo-European people). They belong to the Mongolic branch of the Altaic family and are closely related to the Turkic and Tungusic branches. They are famous for building the Mongol Empire. The Mongol Empire was the largest land empire and the second largest overall empire in world history. Another name for Mongolian is Mongol.

History of the Mongolian People

The most well known Mongolians was the powerful Genghis Khan. He brought together the many tribes and clans of the Mongols and founding the Mongol Empire. The Mongols ruled most of Europe and Eastern Europe, Iran, Central Asia, part of south east Asia, and all of China. Many Turkic peoples joined the Mongolian armies in their conquests. The Uyghur Turks voluntary joined the empire. They even helped the Mongols create a written language of their script.

Culture and lifestlye

The Mongolian people share many customs with the nearby Turkic peoples. They both live in yurts which is called ger in Mongolian. They both have nomadic tradition and both have the wolf in their culture. They are both known to be amazing horsemen, warriors and archers. They both practiced Tengriism (Turko-Mongol shamanism). They both drink airag which is called koumiss by the Turkic peoples.
Photo by Jerrold

The Mongolian traditional drink is called airag.
It is made with mares' milk and is said to be very good for you.
Mongolian being nomadic eat a lot of meat. Meat from sheep and goat is very common. Sometimes horse meat was eaten.
Picture of Airag: The favorite drink of Mongolians and Turks

Like the Tuvans the Mongolians throat sing. The morin khuur or horse head fiddle is a symbol of their culture and people. It can be found in almost all traditional music. The "Jew harp" or khomuz is also played. The Mongolian "Long Song" is a traditional way of singing. It is called "Long Song" because each syllable of text is extended for a long duration. Here a long song

Traditional Costumes


The traditional costumes of the Mongolians was made to fit their nomadic lifestlye. Unlike the costumes of China, Japan and Korea Mongolian costume sleeves were not wide and long. Wide and long sleeves would not work out with horse riding and daily work. So sleeves were narrow even though sometimes women's sleeves were long and hanged down to their knees (Which sometimes can be rolled up). Picture Boots are the favorite foot wear of Mongolians. They are worn by both men and women. The toes of the boots are turned up so the rider will keep his/her feet in the stirrups.
The Mongolian traditional costume for both men and women is called a deel. It is worn by the Mongolic and Turkic peoples of Central Asia and Siberia. They can be made of cotton, silk, or brocade. On the right side of the deel there is a series of 5 or 6 clasps to hold the right flap in place. This includes one clasp below the armpit, three at the shoulder, and either one or two at the neckline. [1] A silk belt usually completes the deel outfit. Women's deels are mostly longer then men's deels. This outfit is similar to the Manchurian cheongsam. Picture

Please note that the cheongsam, even though popular in China, is not Han Chinese but Manchurian. The traditional Manchurian cheongsam was not as tight as the ones today and much longer.

Traditional costumes video
Some are traditional and some are traditional mixed with modern style


Beautiful music video showing traditional costumes. The sung is a traditional Mongolian lullaby.


The Mongolians have three favorite sports which are known as the "Three Manly Skills". They are wrestling, archery and horsemanship. 237932750_8be7b6366b.jpg

Archery is an important part of Mongolian culture and lifestlye. Mongolians are both highly skilled in foot archery and the most used horseback archery. This skill helped the Mongols build the largest land empire in history. Unlike European bows the Mongolian bow was shorted and curved giving it more power. The bows were made of horn and bamboo.

Music Samples

Photo_by_Edwin_Lee_and_under_Creative_Commons_Attribution-No_Derivative_Works.jpgSamples of traditional Mongolian music.

These links work.
Folk Music From Group Egschiglen
Click Here

Folk Music From Inner Mongolian Group Hanggai
Click Here

Nice Mongolian Song


Traditional Music

Videos About Culture, Music or Dance
Mongolian Traditional Show 1 (Two minority dances)
Mongolian Traditional Show 2 (Palace Dance)
Mongolian Traditional Show 3 (Jalam Khar dance)
Mongolian Traditional Show 4 (Stylistic folk dance)