The Muong is the third largest of Vietnam_s 53 minority groups, with an estimated population of 1.2 million. The Muong people inhabit the mountainous region of northern Vietnam, concentrated in Hoa Binh Province and the mountainous districts of Thanh Hoa Province. They are most closely related to the ethnic Vietnamese. While the Muong are believed to be related to the Vietnamese, some ethnologists theorize the Muong remained in the mountains and developed independently while the Vietnamese moved to the low country and became influenced by Chinese culture resulting from the 111 BC invasion by Chinese Han Emperor Wu Ti. The Muong and the Tai have had a mutual influence on each other_s culture. So, today the Muong are ethnically close to the Vietnamese, but culturally and socially similar to the Tai. The Muong speak the Muong language, a close relative of Vietnamese.
Contributions by Neweco, Ish ishwar, and Badagnani.