What is the Origin of the Word People?
A person is a political subdivision or group of people having common interests, aspirations and of common culture. There are different peoples in the world, each with their own languages, cultures, communities and social systems. The idea of a people has been used in the context of the polity of a nation or a state for many centuries now. At times the term is used to refer to a nationality or ethnic group.
In legal contexts, people can be categorized into groups, whether for economic, social, political, cultural or other reasons. For example, there can be one person owning property and another who is the legal owner of the same property. There can also be one people owning property and another who is the legal owner of that same property. However, when talking about people this refers to their rights and entitlements.
When used in legal contexts, people are usually described as an individual or group. A group may be grouped by race, nationality, tribe, social grouping, color, sexual orientation, age, disability, or marital status. In some contexts the word people may also be used to describe an entity such as a corporation, a government department, an association, an institution or a political subdivision. The word people has also been used to describe an act, an instance, an event or an action. In legal contexts, the word people is used to describe an individual or group.
In etymology, the word people refers to members of a social group but is derived from Greek, meaning “a man”. It is also related to the verb gaminos, which means “to be”. The root words for people and for gaminos go back to the Indo-European period. So, people literally means “men” and “group”. Over time, the meaning of people has changed slightly and is now used to describe groups of people, instead of men, women and so forth.
Some people refer to persons as individuals. Other people refer to persons as groups. Still other refer to persons as all different types of people. It is difficult to think of any group of people that could be termed “people”, except perhaps the ethnic groups. The word people seems to stem from the fact that all people have some kind of inborn characteristics or traits that can be classified as human.
Criminal prosecution is based on identity, as well as race, sex and religious affiliation. To be granted bail, a person must usually prove that he or she does not belong to any particular ethnic group or race. Thus, in most cases, if a defendant cannot prove that he or she is not of a certain ethnic group, his or her name will be marked as a foreign name, and will not be allowed to be used during future proceedings. The same would be true if a defendant were to provide a birth certificate showing that he or she is not a native of that particular country.