The Copts are the native Egyptian Christians, a major ethnoreligious group in Egypt and the largest Christian group there. Christianity was the majority religion during the 4th to 6th centuries AD and until the Muslim conquest of Egypt and remains the faith of a significant minority population. Historically they spoke the Coptic language, a direct descendant of the Demotic Egyptian spoken in the Roman era, but it has been near-extinct and mostly limited to liturgical use since the 18th century. They now speak Arabic. Copts in Egypt constitute the largest Christian community in the Middle East, as well as the largest religious minority in the region, accounting for an estimated 10% of Egyptian population. Most Copts adhere to the Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria. The remainder of around 800,000 are divided between the Coptic Catholic and various Coptic Protestant churches.
Contributions by Lanternix, Zerida, and Egyegy.